Friday, September 25, 2015

Sept 15, 2015

Sept. 15, 2015

So today they let us Email since we couldn't yesterday, and a lot has happened in the last couple of weeks.

Monday in the MTC we had our first TRC investigator, A. When we had our lesson with him we realized how under prepared we were. First off, we forgot to ask him to turn off the Music and so it was hard for us to teach with the spirit. Anyway… we really weren't able to teach him because he kept getting off track with really deep discussions about Christ; even though he invited us to hear what we believed. After our lesson my companion and I realized we needed to step it up, so we began to prepare for A. We felt that in our next visit we should apologize about our last lesson and ask if he would be willing to hear the message we had prepared. We weren't quite sure if this was what we needed to do, but after Bishop Causse spoke Tuesday about “being a bold missionary,” we knew it was the right thing to do. So, Thursday we fasted for A and we went forward with the plan we prepared for A. While we taught we could feel the spirit strongly and we were able to reteach our lesson. After our lesson he told us that he thought of us as his sons. He was very impressed at the way we taught and told us that after the first lesson he started to pray for us, because we needed help and told us that we really impressed him in our second lesson.

While I was in the MTC I had some really cool revelations about the Book of Mormon. I realized how powerful the first two books of Nephi are, because the story of Lehi's Journey can be applied to our lives. We are all searching for the Promised Land (exaltation) and we have to be willing to give up the ways of the world (leaving Jerusalem with only your family). We continually give ourselves up to God to get closer to the Promised Land. This allegory made me realize that this story was put in the beginning of the Book of Mormon for a reason, because when we start reading the Book we do it because we want to become closer to God and in order to do that we have to be willing to give something up. I am trying to apply this in my life as I am giving my will to the Lord's will.

So, Monday I woke up at 3:00am to get to the airport. We arrived in Denver around 11:00am. We met President Mendenhall and as soon as I saw him I knew he was a great person and I am so grateful to have him as my mission President. We did orientation and then I got assigned a trainer.
My Companion is Elder Sevilla from the Philippines. I know that he is the right companion for me. We are serving in Bible Park and it’s a biking mission. We got to start tracking at 7:00 and we were able to teach two potential investigators. The first was M and the second was T. It was pretty overwhelming doing door approaches and I learned that it is really important to rely on the spirit. I am so excited to be serving and am ready to push myself.

I love you mom and the rest of the family and I am so grateful for this experience. I've learned that as I rely on the Lord he takes away the burdens of leaving home and changing environments.


Elder Blackham

Sept. 21, 2015

Hi Family,

This week was pretty exciting. Denver is awesome the weather is great. The area I am in (Bible Park) isn't quite like where we live it’s a lower income part of town and there are a lot of apartment complexes. There are some homes but the majority is apartments. There are also some pretty interesting things about the stake there are a lot of inactves. The ward with the highest activity rate is 50% and some wards have as many as 700 inactive members it’s kind of crazy. The ward I'm in has a lot of young families the bishopric look like they are all in their twenties and there are a lot of old folks as well. They combine YM and YW with another ward which means we have sacrament meeting third hour. So there is definitely a lot of work to be done.

Tuesday was a little rough we were trying to get a bike and my debit card locked up on me. So long story short and we spent a couple hours driving around with the Zone Leaders to ATM and my card wouldn't work the nearest Bank of America was Downtown but before that I was finally able to call the Bank and have them take the Security Locks of my card and so I was able to purchase a bike. It’s a pretty nice bike. One of the Zone Leaders, Elder Fisher was a Bike mechanic so that was helpful and by the way my other Zone Leader, Elder Sundwall is from the Scott's ward in Katy and I'm pretty sure he is also the Foster's cousin. Anyways... after we got my bike we went to a dinner appointment and when I was locking our bikes around a pine tree I got sap all over my arm. I didn't get it off till that night when I used a wire sponge to scrub the sap of my arm and I'm pretty sure I lost some of my arm hair. It was a pretty funny experience. Wednesday was very busy I had to wake up at 4:00am for a 6:00am session at the temple it was great. The Denver temple is awesome and it’s cool to see the differences between temples. After that we had zone meeting. We've spent a lot of time tracking and teaching less actives. Saturday was great I punctured a tire but while we were tracking I had a great experience. On Saturday when Elder Sevilla and I were tracking in an apartment complex we knocked on two doors on the bottom floor and no one answered. We walked away from the complex and I turned to my companion and said why don't we try the two apartments above. We went up the stairs and knocked and a lady named B opened the door. As we talked to her and taught her the first discussion we realized that she was prepared and we are so excited to follow up with her. This has been such a great experience, so far and I am really excited for this week.

So on Saturday I ripped the front of my brown shoes. I was borrowing a bike because mine had a flat tire. This bike was terrible and I was going down a hill and as I was pedaling and my chain slipped and my foot slammed on the concrete and ripped my shoe. Is there a warranty for when we bought them or some way I can get them fixed? If there isn't anything that Mr. Mac can do about it then I will probably take them to a shoe repair store or if you have any suggestions.
I took a picture of it so if you could check with Mr. Mac that would be great. Or if you have any suggestions I would appreciate it I'll wait to hear back till next week.

I love you guys very much and I am praying for you guys.


Elder Blackham