Wednesday, July 29, 2015

july 27, 2015 letter

Dear Family:
I first off wanted to write and tell you thank you so much for the package that you sent me! And also for the letters, they meant a lot. It was kind of funny, we check the mailbox every night, normally to no avail, but religiously do it anyway, and i was shocked to find a key in my mail box, and a letter! It definitely made for a good surprise, so thank you (: 

This week, was a better week, but still a little discouraging. I would say that one of the things that is the most frustrating right now is that we have so many people that are just on the cusp of being baptized, but because of members, or other situations, we are not able to get into the home. There are about 8 or so people that have expressed a desire to join the church, but a large majority are hard to get into, because we have to go through a member to get to them, which is a really good thing considering the acceptance rate of those who are invited by members, but adds another obstacle into the equation. We are holding out hope for those people, but at this point haven't gotten very far with them. A lot of the obstacle to overcome is the fear of the members ruining a relationship with their friend. That does happen on occasion, but for the vast majority, whether they accept or not, it will bring them closer together because it shows the openness in their relationship. So right now, aside from that obstacle, we are trying to find on our own, which, at least in the united states, has proven to be astronomically low in success.  

The Lord was merciful this week and helped build my confidence and faith in finding on my own. One of the cool experiences that I had this week was when it was about 8:45 pm, just before we were to be home. We were supposed to run by our investigators to help her clean up some of her yard sale, but I got the distinct impression while i was driving that there was someone walking by the park that we needed to give a book of Mormon to and testify of its truth. I turned to Elder Adams and said "There is somebody here that needs the Gospel." and right as I had finished saying that, we drove past a lady walking to her home. I immediately pulled the car over and jumped right out in front of her with a book of Mormon in my hands. I began to speak with her and testify of the book of Mormon and how it can help us resolve our concerns in our life and how God had sent us here to speak to her. She immediately began to cry and said that she was looking for a way to get help from God and that she couldn't overcome what she was going through. We testified that if she read the book of Mormon, God would answer her prayers. She took the book of Mormon and we got her number and she went on her way. Sadly she lives in Washington so we won't be able to teach her, but we will be able to get some missionaries out there to start helping her out. 

A couple days later, while following the spirit, we decided to stop the car in the middle of nowhere and start walking towards a lady on the street. As we were walking we offered some help to a man and woman putting stuff into their car and they politely declined. But the guy, who is about 34 said, "Hey, are you the Mormon Missionaries?" And we said, "Well, yes we are!" As we talked to him, we found out that he had been the vice president of his seminary class growing up and had wanted to go on a mission as a young adult but went to Australia a couple weeks before putting his papers in and got involved with the wrong crowd and began to drink. When he returned home there was a new bishop because his had been called to be a stake president. He was so discouraged at that, that he didn't ever want to come back to church. About 13 years down the road, he finds us walking in the middle of nowhere, and asks for us to teach him. Again, he is sadly someone who doesn't live in our boundaries, but we will be able to get other missionaries hooked up with him. 

Another story of just opening our mouth and talking to people was with our neighbor who lives just below us and to the left. He had rented a brand new 2015 mustang convertible, so we went and began to talk to him about his car. He expressed that he had a friend who was LDS and went on a mission to Africa and would love to learn more about our religion and to stop by and knock on his door any time. Finally we found someone who lived in our area (; But I am very grateful for how merciful the Lord was this week in helping us open our mouths and filling them with the words we needed to say. 

On a more sad note, one of the Elders in our zone and his old companion in another zone, got sent home.  But I felt really bad for the elder that had stayed in our zone because he was really trying to change. I went on an exchange with him just a few days before he had to leave, and I just tried to push him as hard as I could, knowing that he may never be able to serve again. We had a blast and saw many miracles as we forgot ourselves and served the Lord. The STL's will now be covering their area as well, and Elder Adams and I will be the district leaders over that district on top of our other duties. It will be an exciting time! But my prayers go out to the two young men who got sent home and hope that they will still be able to stick to the tree. 

We also spent a large majority of the week helping an investigator with a yard sale. It was a lot more work than I believe anyone thought it would be, but we had already taken a bite and couldn't stop! The sale was going on Friday to Sunday. Sadly it started raining for the first time in a very long time and she had to cover everything up. But I think it was God's way of telling her she needed to come to church (; 

This week was filled with many different emotions, but mainly the emotion of gratitude for my family! Thank you again for all of the support you give me and for going out of your way to help me in any way you can. I definitely have the best family.
Love, Elder Romney.

I like this Voodoo donut!

There are a lot of random berries on the side of the road!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

july 20, 2015 letter

Dear family:
So this week has been good, but it has also been a pretty discouraging week. I just didn't feel super good and I felt somewhat complacent and at a plateau in my progression in the gospel.  Then one of our investigators broke up with her boyfriend and was kicked out of the house and sent to Portland, so we aren't able to teach her anymore, so this week started out pretty tough. 

But I was so glad that i was going to be able to have interviews with president! We went to a youth conference just before interviews on Saturday and he gave an amazing talk on overcoming challenges and fears. He talked about David & Goliath and how David had to overcome something so much bigger than himself and had to turn to God to help him. Some interesting facts about Goliath:  he was 9' 9" and his armor weighed 150 pounds.  President had us write down what we needed to change on 5 smooth rocks, like David used to kill Goliath. It really seemed to help me focus, and the interview with president was so good. He can really read you and he answered every question I had. The spirit of discernment is real. 

On a happy note, our other investigators are still doing so amazing, and we are hoping they will move their baptism date up still!  This week was a big testimony builder of my love for Jesus Christ, I know that He lives and I know that He loves us and will help us through any trial. 
Elder Romney (:

Calling people in the zone at night!!

Awesome new bike!

I guess we were jammin' out too hard to MoTab in the car!

A little boy I think kind of looks like me

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

july 13, 2015 letter

Dear family:
This last week our investigator, asked us if we could watch her garden for her while she was gone, so we offered to water her garden at night while she was away. She called us just before she left and told us that she had left a thing of macaroni salad by the front door and that she left it unlocked and to just reach in and grab it and then lock the door. So we went over there around 8 pm to grab the salad and water the garden that night. We opened the door and we could hear something coming from the living room and saw that the lights were on in there, so we opened the door a little wider and saw that the macaroni salad wasn't there and that we could hear the TV on in the living room. So we started knocking on the door saying their names and asking if anyone was there. We didn't get any response so we walked into the living room and turned off the lights and the t.v. and went into her backyard to water her garden like she had asked. I kept getting this creepy feeling that someone or something was watching us from the upstairs window from the master bedroom, so after we were done watering the garden, we decided to go upstairs and make sure there wasn't someone who had broken into the house. We entered through the back door and I went to the kitchen and grabbed some scissors and we started to make our way upstairs. We got to the top and all the lights were off and all the doors were shut, so we were getting ready to check each room. When we had opened the first door, we realized there wasn't anyone in it, so we moved onto the master bedroom. Elder Adams got to the end of the hall and just stopped in his tracks and said, "I hear music and the shower going.  There is someone in there." And, not really wanting to confront a robber or whomever was in there taking a shower, we decided to leave and go sit in the car and have a stakeout to see if anyone came out of the house. We waited for a little while until someone in our ward drove by and we decided to go and talk to him about it and ask for his advice. We wanted to ask him because he is an attorney and knows a lot more about the law, as to what we should or shouldn't do. We decided to contact her son on Facebook through a message and not to go back in the house so we wouldn't be responsible for anything, and so something didn't happen to us. We would have called her but she was up in the woods with her husband and they had no service, so we just had to wait it out. Turns out when they got home, we talked to them about the situation and they told us that they had left the t.v. on for their cats that stayed in the house... haha we both felt dumb about freaking out about a t.v. being on and her not telling us about leaving it on. So in the end, the only threat behind that door was a harmless house cat! Kind of lame sauce, I was sort of hoping it was some crazy guy (; 

We were teaching a girl, who is Brother T's, brother's girlfriend, the one who has accepted to be baptized, and Brother T's whole family decided that they wanted to come. Brother T's brother, who has been less active. came and sat down to listen, so we started to teach him too. When Brother T began to bear his testimony of the restored gospel, his brother started to freak out and yell at us. We were all able to handle it calmly, but he was persistent in getting in what he didn't agree with. It was kind of weird, because i could feel the spirit enter into me and i just began to testify even more boldly to her about living prophets. It was a cool experience to see that even though there was an opposition in the room, we were able to keep the spirit in there. 

All our investigators are doing really well, and are progressing toward baptism! We looked over all the people that we are teaching, and there are about 8 or so people who should be baptized, but there is just something in the way. so if you could keep them in your prayers, that would be soo nice! Thank you! 
Elder Romney (:

 Having fun in Tillamook

At a Chinese restaurant in Tillamook

This was a while ago, but those M&M's got spread everywhere and Elder Adams was doing something crazy, so this was my look to him... Haha I bet you've seen that face before!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

july 6, 2015 letter

Dear Family:
This week was really good! I would have to say that the biggest thing that happened was during MLC (Mission Leadership Council) where all the zone leaders and the ap's get together with the president and usually talk about the whole mission and what we need to do to improve, but this MLC was quite different. 

As you all know, the law was passed for legalizing gay marraige in all of the states in the U.S., and we talked for 6 hours about this and the importance of  the family. President Samuelain said that when this happened, it was one of the darkest times. He said that the way we react to this situation will greatly determine our happiness in this life, and that the biggest battle that we will fight in this life is the fight for the family. It says in the scriptures that in the last days, good things will be called bad and bad things will be called good, and that this is one of the biggest signs of it. Yes, we shouldn't descriminate and should let people practice what they desire, but when a whole nation decides wickedness, the wrath of God is upon that nation. This is the beginning of the end, and prophesies of old are coming to pass. It's a sensitive subject to a lot of people, and we should tread very lightly, but it doesnt change the commandments of God. We as a church didnt make them up, the Almighty God did.  It's going to be crazy to see what happens in the next little while and to see what other prophesies will come to pass.  

We were also able to teach the young women and the high priests and the elders quorum about the importance of the family and we were able to get a lot of referalls from all of them. All my investigators are doing well! I want to testify of the importance of the family and all that they will do for us on this earth and in the eternities. 
I love you all so much!
Love, Elder Romney

Playing tennis baseball on Pday