Thursday, October 24, 2013

My Missionary...

I sent this funny story I found online (sorry no source) to my missionary and he quite enjoyed it, thought yours might too :)

It was late fall or early winter, and Elder Thurman was bemoaning the lack of snow in our Southern California town, while his Utah hometown was enjoying good "skiing weather." One evening, following a particularly good DA, the homesick elder and his companion were riding down a long, sloping street when Thurman sat up, took his hands off the bars and put them in his pocket while leaning left and right in a slalom course down the middle of the street.
Elder Sorenson lagged behind, knowing that trunkiness cometh before a fall and preferring to be an observer than a participant. Trouble soon arrived with the dip in the road, which left Thurman's bike out of control as he tried in vain to pull his hands out of his pockets. He and his bike slide along the curb before finally tumbling end over end, filnging tracts and discussion manuals all over Glendora, and Elder Thurman parted ways with his bike while Elder Sorenson sat on his bike, laughing . . .
. . .as Elder Thurman came to rest on the lawn of some people who had been watching this whole circus coming toward them. They ran to him asking if he was all right, and his instant response:
"Now that I've got your attention, what do you know about the Mormon Church?!"
I have always considered this the Ultimate Door Approach . . .

Image from

Future Missionaries

For all those Men and Women coming to the missionary age and wondering if they are ready, or if they should go, when they should prepare or how:

An article I recently read on and enjoyed. Sharing in a FHE or young men's or young women's activity or giving to your future missionary in your home to read; are all great ways to share the advice shared here :

Now that I’m in the mission field, here are some things I wish I’d learned before I left.

Dear Future Missionaries


two girls and a boy talking(click to view larger)
Photo illustrations by Welden C. Andersen
Editor’s note: While serving as a full-time missionary in the Mexico Torreón Mission, Elder Porter wrote this letter home to the younger members of his family.
I wanted to share some insights I have gained on how to better prepare to serve a full-time mission. These insights have come to me gradually with experience and time, and I hope by sharing them that I can encourage you to begin to prepare now to have greater success in your missionary efforts.

Learn to Talk to People

One of the first things I learned is the importance of being able to carry on a conversation with people face-to-face. Texting and social media can be wonderful tools, but they cannot replace the dynamic exchange that takes place while you’re simply conversing with someone. If you are in the grocery line, talk with the person next to you, even if it’s simply about the weather.
The best place to start is in your own home. Have conversations with your family. Talk with your parents and siblings about various things, and tell them how you feel. Learn how to express yourself. Your missionary efforts will be more successful if you can lessen your fear of talking to people, especially to complete strangers, about things that matter to you.
Talking to strangers can be hard, but it’s a reality of missionary work—you will be talking with strangers for the majority of your mission. The more you can learn to look someone in the eye and share your feelings, the greater the opportunities you will have to invite the Spirit to be a part of your conversations. You will also learn that even though folks may be “strangers” to you initially, all are in reality your brothers and sisters, so do not be afraid to “open your mouths” (D&C 33:8–9).

Learn to Listen and Then Act

You will be spending a lot of time listening to those you teach. They will share with you their thoughts, feelings, and even their doubts. Learn to sincerely listen. This will help you to more easily recognize the challenges your investigators may be facing and to more specifically address their concerns (see Preach My Gospel [2004], 185–86). Begin now by learning to listen sincerely to your sisters, brothers, parents, and friends. While you’re listening, learn to forget yourself in the process. Don’t focus on how you’re going to fix other people’s problems or respond to their concerns. Instead, just listen and allow the Spirit to direct you on what you should say and when.
This can be challenging, especially if you’re learning a new language. I have noticed that if I become too focused on what to say or how to say things correctly with the language, then I often lose the chance for the Spirit to guide my thoughts and words. I have begun to learn how to focus on acting when the Spirit prompts me.

Learn to Follow the Spirit

One of the biggest blessings during my time of service has been learning the importance of acting on promptings when they are received. When the Spirit tells me to do something, I try to do it, no matter how small it may seem. For instance, I felt prompted to pray for rain while teaching a family for the first time. The little ranchero where I am serving has been in drought for several years and rarely sees rain, but the Spirit prompted me to ask for rain. That night, it rained. This made such a strong impression that the family asked us to return to continue to teach the gospel.

Learn to Ask Questions

I have learned the importance of asking questions when prompted by the Spirit. To you future missionaries, I would recommend that you practice asking questions. In doing so, learn to be direct so that you can help others get to the heart of their concerns. From my brief observations, I have seen that successful missionaries are those who have learned the principle of listening and then asking questions that promote pondering. This approach has been much more successful for me than trying to force a conversation that is one-sided or trying to prove the truthfulness of the gospel by logic alone. I have instead learned the significance of inviting others to learn for themselves by asking important gospel questions that invite deeper contemplation, reflection, and personal study.

Learn to Be Bold

I have learned the importance of being bold. We sometimes invite those we teach to set a baptismal date during our first visit. Initially, this was really scary for me, but I have seen many times the fruits of extending the invitation of baptism during that first visit. As I was reading the Book of Mormon, I realized that one of the first things Christ did during his visit to the Americas was to invite those He taught to be baptized in His name (see 3 Nephi 11:23). Baptism is the gateway that allows individuals to partake of the gospel and eventually receive temple blessings. This is one reason we serve missions—to extend the same invitation and blessings to all of God’s children.
Therefore, be bold with those around you. Invite your friends to seminary, Church services, and activities. Invite them to hear the missionary lessons if prompted. Invite them to hear your testimony. As missionaries, you will have both the responsibility and authority to invite people to repent and “come unto Christ” (D&C 20:59). Remember, you have something of “great price” to share; there is no reason to hold back. Learn to be bold and direct.

Learn to Love

Perhaps most important, learn to sincerely love those you will have the opportunity to teach. Pray for them, serve them, and show them that you care, and they will begin to have confidence in you as a representative ofJesus Christ.
If you begin to prepare now by talking to others, listening to their concerns, asking questions as prompted by the Spirit, and then learning to be bold and to love, I know the Lord will bless you in your missionary efforts.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

My missionary ...

I enjoy writing my brother every week and I am going to start a new set of posts including anything my missionary especially liked in my email, usually the spiritual thought at the end.

I thought I would start with this story, I sent my brother near the beginning of his mission back in April. He mentioned how much he liked this story and I thought your missionary might too :)

Excerpt from my email,

Excerpt from Elder Richards The Joy of Serving a Mission talk:

Image from Mormon Voice
Now I like a little story that President Grant used to tell about the love that converts have for their missionaries. He told about a couple who came here from one of the Scandinavian countries. They hadn’t been taught much about the gospel. All they knew was that it was true. And so the bishop went to this couple and taught them the law of tithing. They paid their tithing. Then later the bishop went to them and taught them about the fast offering. They paid their fast offering. And then the bishop went to them again to get a donation to help build a ward meetinghouse. They thought that ought to come out of the tithing, but before the bishop got through with them, they paid their donation on the meetinghouse.

Then the bishop went to the father to get his son to go on a mission. Now I can hear President Grant standing here, saying, “That was the straw that broke the camel’s back.” The man said, “He’s our only child. His mother will miss him. We can’t let him go.” Then the bishop countered, “Brother So-and-So, who do you love in this world more than anyone else outside of your own relatives?” And he thought for a few minutes. He said, “I guess I love that young man who came up to the land of the midnight sun and taught me the gospel of Jesus Christ.” Then the bishop countered, “Brother So-and-So, how would you like someone to love your boy just like that?” The man said, “Bishop, you win again; take him. I’ll pay for his mission.”

Link here: