Monday, June 19, 2017

April - May 2017

April 3, 2017

This week was great! It just felt like a spiritual recharge. To answer some of your questions - I have played the piano on my mission, mainly just for district meetings if no one else can play the piano. It definitely makes me wish I would have practiced more because I am not that great. As far as my teeth I'd say they are pretty good. Well we had transfers this week and it went really smooth which was nice. We have been using the new “Prince of Peace” video which has been great. It is a really powerful message that we have been able to share. This weekend was really busy and we didn't have a whole lot of time to proselyte. On Friday we had Mission Leadership Council. It was really great. President Mendenhall, showed all of the past Easter initiative video's and had us share one word that described when we felt the spirit was very strong and that meeting had a big impact on me. One thing I am trying to do when I talk to people is to imagine what the Savior would do and then follow him. It’s helped me talk to everyone because I know the Savior would talk to everyone. General Conference was also really special it was my last one on my mission and it was a very special conference. I love President Monson’s talk on the Book of Mormon. Some people may not like how short his talks are but I think it makes it even more important to heed his council. He could have spoken on anything and he chose to speak on the Book of Mormon and the anchor it is for our souls. His invitation was simple - read it every day - how long or in what detail he didn't say. Just read it. I also loved Elder Rasband’s talk to not only recognize the spirit but to respond. It is something I am trying to do better to act on promptings I receive. Sunday night was so cool. I just felt such a desire to talk to everyone. We talked to people up on their balconies on the phone it didn't matter I wanted to sound a trumpet that this gospel is restored. Also Saturday night we were leaving the Priesthood Session and I felt we need to stop by B's. My companion felt the same and we did. We committed him to watch General Conference and when we followed up the next day he did. He listened to the Prophet and for the first hour of the Sunday morning session. It was really powerful because I don't think B would have if we didn't heed the Prompting to act. I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to share the Gospel. It is so great and a special privilege. My GOTO scripture this week is John 12:26 "If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me him will my father honour." I am trying my best to follow Christ I know as I do he will be with me.


April 10, 2017

This week was really awesome. We had a car fast on Tuesday and of course Tuesday was the coldest day this week and we did a lot of finding, it was pretty funny - we were tracting and we met a man who was a member but wasn't on the directory. He wanted us to keep in contact with him but what was funny was that he lived right behind the church. Also we were able to find a couple new people to teach. We taught two Sister's in our ward that are coming back to church and I felt we really needed to emphasize on preparing for the temple and when we invited her to do that she told us she had met with the Relief Society President earlier that day and had talked about a plan to prepare for the temple. It’s pretty cool that we were able to reconfirm that for her. Thursday night we felt prompted to stop by an Investigator but he wasn't home. What was really cool was that someone we had been trying to meet with for the last transfer pulled over next to us and we scheduled to meet with her the next day. Her name is K and when we stopped by the next day she told us she had been called into work earlier but she just ignored it because she wanted to meet with us. We taught her and her two sons the Restoration and invited her and her son who is 9 to be baptized and they accepted a date for May 13th. We are really excited for them, but we definitely have a lot more to teach them. Saturday night we had a really cool lesson we stopped by D’s, she is Christian but is really just searching for truth, and she told us she was on the phone and that after we could talk with her.  While we waited we talked to one of her room mates, M. He believes in Native American beliefs and was telling about the Sweat lodge, and then another room mate came down, C. He believes in all scripture basically Christianity, Hinduism, and probably something else, but at first I was wondering how we were going to teach three different people with three very different beliefs our message. The great things is the Gospel can be related to everything and since their beliefs probably all came from the fullness of the gospel we were able to teach the Plan of Salvation and answer all there question. The funny part was partway through the lesson D grabbed this quartz rock and only the person who held the rock could talk. It was a lesson to remember. Also this week I finished the Book of Mormon for the fourth time. It took me over a year because I had been thoroughly studying it and not to mention I read the Book of Mormon in between for the Book of Mormon challenge. It was kind of like Book of Mormon inception. I know that the Book of Mormon is true it has strengthened me so much and brought me closer to Christ.


April 17, 2017

This week has been really great! It’s so cool to hear about all these mission calls. Also I am glad Tyler had a great time at youth conference. I think those experiences had a big impact on my life and helped me a lot in my life. 

This week was great. First off on Saturday, I was able to attend the Baptism of H. I found her when I was in Aurora in the Sable Ward. It is so cool to see the progression in her conversion. I remember knocking on her door and how excited she was to first meet us and this weekend she made the covenant of baptism. I attached a picture.  She said she didn't really want it on social media though. It was a great Baptism. Elder Dale was able to baptize her and hopefully her husband C will follow soon. We had Zone Conference this week and it was a great meeting. I was able to learn a lot and I really desire to have my eye single to the glory of God or in other word to see others as our Heavenly Father see them. We had a great Easter and we were trying to get as many people to sacrament as possible. F and M went to Sacrament Meeting which was really great and also the R family were there (they are recent converts that haven't been to church in a while). We have spent a lot of time finding this week and we were able to share the “Prince of Peace” message with quite a few people as well. We met a man named V and it was really cool because we were in these apartments and I had felt prompted to knock on their door before but no one answered. Well we were walking by their door and I felt we should knock on it again and this time they opened. They are from India and are Hindu but he was really open to reading from the Book of Mormon so that was a neat experience. Also we had a lesson with D, M, and C. It was a crazy lesson. C is the most interested out of everyone I think, so we will see where that goes. Also we have been doing lessons with the members to find people who are ready. It’s just beginning, but over time I think it will really help. Have you been able to invite anyone lately? Just curious…Well my GOTO scripture this week is Alma 34:32 "For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors." Have a great week!


April 24, 2017

This week has been a great week - some great things are happening in our area. Really quick one thing that they don't tell you to bring is a GPS. It’s pretty useful. I don't know if Josh would be able to use one but most missionaries use them. I have one that I bought from a missionary. Well we did two exchanges this week. The first was with Elder Cluff - he is a really great missionary. We had to drive to the Denver Temple to meet a senior missionary who had packages for us, so that was fun. We had a great time as went about sharing the gospel and had a lot of good conversations, but one of the coolest experiences was when stopped by a member who is getting married or got married to a non-member. We didn't get to meet the non-member but we were able to talk to her about teaching him. On Wednesday I was on exchanges with Elder Hartwig in the Auburn Hills and Newlin Meadows Ward. They are some nice areas with really nice homes. That area had been struggling with finding but we were able to find a new person to teach. His name is M and he is Jewish. He was really nice. We had a cool lesson with a part member family later that night but the nonmember wasn't home. It was still a really good experience because we were able to help the member open up and invite the whole family to read and pray together. The rest of the week we spent a lot of time finding. We were tracting one night and this older man opened the door and said “you tracted into me come on in.” We were a little confused but this man was actually a less active member that had moved in about a week ago. That was pretty cool. We have to move K’s baptismal date back because she wasn't able to make it to church. Anyways this should be a good week My GoTo Scripture is Matthew 26:39.


Elder Blackham


May 3, 2017

Sorry I forgot to tell you are P-day is on Wednesday this week because we had a temple trip today. Well this week was really great and I had a lot of fun. So last Monday we had Zone P-Day we played some pretty fun games, like glow in the dark capture the flag, indoor foosball, and this balloon came where you tied balloons to your ankles and tried to step on other people’s balloons. We went on exchanges with the AP's on Wednesday and had a really good exchange while we were there we tried a prank that Elder LaPerle did to me a week earlier, where he put one of those Easter Egg tablets into the shower head and for the first couple seconds the water looked like Kool-aid. Well it kind of back fired when we tried it on the AP's because it launched the shower head off. I guess it built up to much pressure but we eventually got it working again. We had a great lesson where we really listened to the investigator's comments and where able to teach to her needs. We actually taught some really good lessons that day. We had Interviews with President this week. That was really great - President and Sister Mendenhall are awesome! Friday evening and all day Saturday it snowed, yeah in April it was crazy but we saw some huge miracles from that. We first met M. He just moved from Alabama and his family is moving here soon. He let us teach him and we had a great lesson and he was really willing to search for himself. The second was on Saturday night we hadn't really found anyone to teach and it was almost 8pm. We first met C who let us schedule a time to come back. We were then on the third floor of an apartment building and my feet were wet and freezing and we knock on a door and this lady lets us come in and teach her family. She has two sons and we had a great lesson with them. Her kids were asking tons of questions and they have been looking for a church to go to. We are really excited to start teaching them and helping their family even more. We had a car fast yesterday and even though we had all our appointments fall through it was a really good day and we met a man that just moved from Florida and would like us to come back and teach his family. I have really seen huge blessings this week for being diligent and enduring to the end because that is where the Lord truly blesses us. My GoTo Scripture this week is 3 Nephi 27:13 "Behold I have given unto you my gospel, and this is the gospel which I have given unto you—that I came into the world to do the will of my Father, because my Father sent me." I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ it has brought me so much peace in my life and helped me do things I didn't think I could do.


May 8, 2017

So transfers are this week I am leaving Parker and I am going up to Denver North to the Quail Valley and Trail Winds Ward. I have never really been to that part of the mission so it should be a lot of fun. Also I am going to be with Elder Reynolds. He came out with me but I haven't really served around him so this should be great! I am really going to miss Parker though. This is such a great area and I have meet some incredible members. This area is great and hopefully it will continue. We have had some pretty awesome experiences. We had a lesson with our investigator C. We were able to teach her sons as well and we had a great lesson, they had a lot of questions that we answered and we are going to be able to continue teaching them. Also we had this crazy experience where we were in an apartment complex and some lady told us to not be surprised if people were rude. Well we knocked 5 doors in a row and they all opened said we aren’t interested and then closed the door. Well we kept knocking and we meet A and we are going to be able to start teaching her and her family. Also last Tuesday night as we were finishing up the night we talked really shortly with this young couple and they told us to stop by. Well when we stopped by they let us in and we were able to teach them. It was a really cool lesson and we are going to be able to continue teaching them. My GOTO scripture this week is Moroni 7:33 "And Christ hath said: If ye will have faith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me." I am grateful for the opportunity I have to serve, I need to use the time I have now to the fullest.


May 15, 2017
I really enjoyed talking with everyone last night. Everyone seemed to be doing great and I was excited to here that Josh has done a lot of preparations for his mission. Could you really encourage him to go out with the missionaries? I never did that and I wish I had, also another thing that would help him would be to give a copy of the Book of Mormon to a friend. I'll always remember one of the missionaries back home who said the one thing he regrets was not giving his friend a Book of Mormon. That really helped motivate me to give a Book of Mormon to Paul.

Anyways this week was a great week, it was bittersweet to leave Stonegate - I really loved that area. Tuesday before I left was really great. We first drove Elder Fry to the mission home - he just finished his mission. I was able to stop by a couple families before we left and that night we had a great lesson with the B Family. We were able to begin teaching them the Plan of Salvation and it was a really great. Also that night before we were heading home I got to talk to C and F and say good bye to them. Transfers went really well, I am excited to be serving with Elder Reynolds, I have learned a lot from him already. We are really excited for this transfer and to make the most of it. We had some really solid lessons this week one with M. She was really open to our message and wanting to learn,
and she was going to be at sacrament meeting this Sunday but she wasn't able to leave work. The other was with D. He has been reading from the Book of Mormon a lot and we were able to help him begin to recognize the spirit and help strengthen his testimony. We had a Leadership meeting on Friday and I was able to take away a lot. Two things I am trying to focus on are: Accounting to God in my Prayers and also finding ways to express my love for Christ. My GOTO scripture this week is Alma 5:26 "And now behold, I say unto you, my brethren, if ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so
now?" I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to be serving here on my mission

May 22, 2017
Hey Dad I heard you were called in the Stake Presidency. How did you feel when you received that call? I know you have been called by revelation and because that is so, I know you will be supported and Strengthened in your calling. I love this quote by Elder Maxwell "God does not begin by asking us about our ability, but only about our availability, and if we then prove our dependability, he will increase our capability!" This week has been a really great week. It has been really great working here in the Thornton area. Elder Reynolds and I have really been working hard. We have been doing a lot of tracting and talking with everyone we see and we have seen blessings from that. We have a couple investigators that we are working with consistently. First we met with M this week and we were able to bring a member from our ward to that lesson. The spirit was really strong and we focused on how we can receive an answer that the Book of Mormon is true. We also met with D he has been reading the Book of Mormon and that has helped him a lot and he is praying to know if he should be baptized. We had some really cool experiences while we were finding this week. On Tuesday I was on splits with another Elder because Elder Reynolds and another Elder went to a leadership meeting. While they went to the meeting we were finding and the first person we met was a lady from Pueblo who was living with family here and she had been dealing with some trials. We were able share part of the plan of salvation with her and we are going to start teaching her. Also it was crazy at the end of the week it was snowing and we met a member that was living with her daughter's family who weren't members. We stopped by the next day and taught the grandson, it was a great opportunity and I am grateful we had the chance to teach him. The other really cool experience we had was with K. We had been tracting all day and we met him. He had met with missionaries in the past and had been to church before and we are excited to start teaching his family. My GOTO scripture this week is Mosiah 28:3 "Now they were desirous that salvation should be declared to every creature, for they could not bear that any human soul should perish; yea, even the very thoughts that any soul should endure endless torment did cause them to quake and tremble." I am grateful to be able to share the Gospel and for the time I have left to continue to do that

May 30, 2017
I appreciate your letters, it is really cool to here that Josh went through the temple and that he is going to be a temple worker. This week was a really good week. We had Zone Conference this week and so that took up a lot of time. We spent quite a bit of time getting ready for a training that Elder Reynolds and I had to give at Zone Conference. We trained on teaching with your companion in unity and something I took away is sometimes I think for things to be fair or equal within a companionship it has to be I do 50% and you do 50% and that equals a 100%, but that’s not the right way. It works best when I give 100% and you give 100%. We also had to drive all the way down to the south side of the mission to help with car inspections so that took up a lot of time. Zone Conference was really great. It was President and Sister Mendenhall's last Zone Conference so it was pretty special. The theme was Strive. Some things I took away were that my mission is a turning point in my life and that I never need to turn
back and if I do my best now that will prepare me for the future. Also I learned to use Teaching in the Savior's Way - it is a really cool manual and I had never really read it before, it is a great tool to help me evaluate myself as a teacher. So during the beginning of the week we didn't get to as much proselyting as we would have liked and it made it even harder when D and also M dropped us. But we pressed forward and continued finding and we had some really cool experiences. We felt we needed to rely more on the Lord and so we set some goals to pray more as a companionship. As we did that we found a lot of people that were willing to let us come back and share more of our message with them. One specifically was G. I saw his family outside while we were on the phone and I felt we should go talk to them, so we went and knocked on their door. We began to talk with G and teach him the restoration and he had never heard these things before. So as we taught him he was willing to search for himself and meet with us again. My GOTO scripture this week is Matthew 4:20 "And they straightway left their nets, and followed him" I am grateful for the opportunity I have to serve the Lord. Yes I am asked to give much up but as the Apostles left their nets I have left mine and will continue in service to Christ.
Elder Blackham


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