Elder Edgels wisdom:

Elder Edgel's wisdom: I knew God was a Heavenly Father who loved me beyond anything I could ever imagine and was going to do His best to help me along.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Skype picture

It was a very Merry Christmas since we were able to talk to Elder Edgel. He really is doing great! He looks so wonderful!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Its so humbling to think that the Savior was born for US.

Elder Condie while on exchanges and talking about the missionary pictures (all leaders have pictures of the missionaries in their jurisdiction) said jokingly every time he sees my picture it makes him happy because of how purely happy I look hahaha. Thank you for the smile momma! That's a compliment to your wonderful contagious smile!

How can i cook with chicken breast?

All my dirty boys, I'm currently trying to write letters to each of you. I can only write letters on P-days and mostly we don't even have time to be in the appartment. I love you all though. Something that came to mind though, my companion studied some hymns this morning and got a whole lot out of it. Did you know Nearer My God to Thee is based off the story of Jacob in the old testament? If just reading scriptures is boring to you, try annotating the hymns and reading the scripture references. I think you music talented kids might like that. I thought of you. I'm sure you could understand music a whole lot more just by studying music written by the Spirit.

I asked Fred one day if i could come back after my mission and work with him for a summer. He said ya of course and brought it back up another time. He's another one of those extremely hard working men. He's very smart. A little more on Fred. He's a native here and grew up on owl eggs and elk milk since they were so poor they just domesticated their own wild animals. He's a convert to the church at around age 21. As soon as he read the BoM he knew it was true and couldnt stop reading. He served in Vietnam, has a twin sister (who just passed), has been in prison where he constantly was singing teach me to walk in the light, has had a pet beaver, skunk, seal, racoon, built his own boat to make some money as a fisherman in Alaska, abducted his kids from Alaska got past border patrol twice after the whole continent was looking for him (you might be able to find that in the news if you search. it was a big deal. People were sending him money and supporting him) and is a very very spiritual man. He always tells of the story when he was in the middle of the ocean in shipwreck pass with 3 story tall waves around him in his small boat feeling like he would die and literally seeing the waves calm around him as he prayed so earnestly our Heavenly Father and sailing safely through the night. He's an amazing man. He's rough around the edges and secretly sensitive, but a very good man. I would love for my family to meet him and Don Ella. Such wonderful people. So helpful to the ward. Call Don Ella some time, momma. She would love to talk with you. Make sure you get to have Fred say hi as well. And ensure that pops says to them.

Well He did. Heavenly Father is giving me a testimony of leadership. I was bitter about it but He's teaching me to not overlook it. I feel such unearthly love for these missionaries. It's been really great to be a part of. I love how He works with us and gives us what we need to be stronger. In Gospel Principles as were talking about The Fall a less active lady told about how she had gone through a divorce and car wreck and how she's not totally glad that it's all happened, she's at peace with it and knows it was there to help her and knows that if it weren't for the fall and the pain that we get to experience, we wouldn't grow and become stronger. She doesn't talk about her trials much so it was so special to be a part of. We just hope she continues coming to church. Such a simple thing such as church attendance can bless our lives spiritually in so many ways. Especially the way that God has set up His organization in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. There are so many testimonies that point to this being His Church. Find your own testimony. Find out for yourself and experiment upon the Book of Mormon and see if it can't help your life even more.

I love you all. Merry Christmas and remember the reason for the Season. It's so humbling to think that the Savior and Redeemer was born on THIS earth for US. That the one person who had a perfect love and perfect being came for US. Remember His love.

-Elder Edgel

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Sometimes the Lord uses ice cream to do His work

THANK YOU THANK YOU for the package! It was so exciting and perfect! The music is perfect. It reminds me of being gathered around a Christmas tree reading stories and drinking hot cocoa. The songs on them were really good so thank you a ton for sending them!

If anyone has any recipe for meals I'd like them.

I would like the story of both you and Dad's conversion. How old were you and how old was Jeremy?

Not sure if I already shared this, but reading through my journal, my favorite parts were when I was working with my family. Some families favorite thing is watching movies, playing cards (our poor mother likes it and her grumpy boys hate it), our family likes to just work. I love doing that with my dad and brothers. I didn't do enough of it.

Joe is coming around quite well. He said that he only wanted to say one thing that he was grateful for on Facebook for Thanksgiving and said he talked about the missionary program in the church.

At our last district meeting we all talked about what we learned this past transfer. The most quiet spoke up and admitted to what he has learned. Everyone said profound things. One had wanted to go home, not sure if I told you, said he learned how God is there and that he's decided to stay. Sweat almost came out of my eyeballs. It was such a reward to have him stay. My district in one transfer has had 2 ETs. That was a good reassuring start of how well I was doing. It's so important to know what's going on in everyone's lives. I love my district so much. I feel so unworthy to be their leader sometimes but I when I forget that, and focus on the love I feel toward them, it all works.

No one in Steamboat was transferred! Only two in my district, but they are still in my district.

We had very cool OYMing experiences. Stoner method. One person who had his headphones in and was quite awkward, when asked what he thought of when he saw the picture of Christ holding the lamb on the pamphelt paused, looked at it and said, I'll be honest with you guys, I needed this right now. I'll tell you something I haven't told anyone. I feel very lucky to have met you. It was such an amazing experience. We're going to see him soon sometime. We also met someone wanting to have Christ more in his life and struggling. We promised him that because of his open heart, he could be filled. He said he was very grateful to hear that because not many of his friends tell him good job for being open minded.

We had a powerful lesson with some kids of a member. They've been inactive for awhile. It was very powerful just going over the first lesson. Whenever the Spirit is strong I always know it's because that person we're teaching needs it. I'm learning to not be afraid of being bold and confident and loving.

We've been playing basketball every Tuesday night (just found out we weren't supposed to. Whoops!) at the ward building with a lot of non members and one of our investigators. We've been having a spiritual thought every time and in the last one we asked them to read the BoM and one of the boys asked us for one before we could offer it and was excited to read it. It was so special. My comp has been struggling a lot with confidence in himself. In the car he said he never feels the Spirit when he talks and said he feels like he ruined the thought after he spoke. After saying things I thought were necessary for him to hear I shut my fat mouth. Then felt to tell him that he was good enough for the mission and good enough for the Lord. He asked me "how did you know to say that?" in his tears. It was so special to be there for him. He's really improved so much since that and has greater confidence in himself. I'm learning a lot to be more sensitive to him and love him more as the Lord does. We get to be together another 6 weeks which is really special to me.

There's a lot of drama going on with the people that the Sisters teach and in the ward. So at waffles today Don Ella was in a room with a sobbing investigator while everyone was cooking and eating. I noticed Sister Tew grab ice cream from the freezer and two spoons and slip into a room. I started asking "what was tha - oh." Then as she was talking to another investigator had to take her to the room. Then a recent convert had to be led into the room hahahaha. And another tub of ice cream and spoons were thrown in. It was so good for those sisters to have that. Don Ella is an amazing woman.

Elder Dean stories! While OYMing a cute/kinda flirtatious walked by. Elder Dean: Hey how's it going what's your name. girl: I'm (whatever)! I have to go but don't worry you'll see me again in your dreams! Elder Dean: *after she's walked off a little ...Can we give you our number?!?!
He's been slipping on ice and falling at least once every single day this week. Poor guy.

OYMd three girls "hey have you guys every talked to mormon missionaries?" No not yet. *stood willing to talk Elder Dean walks away. Bahahahaha! So they asked if he needed help getting back to his apartment or something. Finally I came up and helped him out and set up a time to see them latter. Elder Dean asked, do you think they're hookers since they offered to come back with us to our apartment?

While guessing what transfers was going to be he said how most the elders would be whitewashed. I asked do you know why missionaries are white washed? That's a little rude Elder. No I just like saying whitewash.

Elder Dean has a lot to talk about! Such an awesome kid. In my journal I wrote down all this gifts to help me love him more. And what is in my power to help him. It's helped us a lot to grow closer with one another.

The biggest thing I'm learning right now is inspiring in others a motivation to learn more about the Gospel. That's all we can do at times. I've come to find for myself that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints offers so much peace and solace. It has helped me to feel happy. I would be 100Xs more of a grump than I am now. Everyone that has ever truly and honestly opened their heart to if the Book of Mormon is truth and is honestly willing to act on it, has been made happier. Kirk is so much happier. My parents are happier who came from hard lives, my brothers are happier who were in the middle of despair. And I've been given hope that life is worth something and that I should keep mine. I've been given peace that there is a being who created and loves me infinitely and knows what's perfect for me in order to be happy. There is a master plan for each of us by this being who profess to be our Heavenly Father.

This plan is called The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This plan is found in the Book of Mormon and missionaries can help you find it out for yourself. Don't wait till you're broken hearted to find if this can help. Try to open your heart now. I wouldn't dedicate 2 years of my life going against all that is natural to me to do something I didn't know for a surety is not only just a good thing to do, but is THE truth to help us all. Not to push around, but to lift us up. I know that is true. I know it can help all and I am eternally grateful for the chance to give it to others.

Read the Book of Mormon. Talk to the missionaries. I love you all and think you of you all.

Elder Edgel

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Pics of baptism, thanksgiving drawing

So you have my name in the left corner which is in of itself saying what I'm grateful for (did you catch that? hehe) The BoM, Snowboarding, bottom left corner is supposed to be the Vegas lights, there's a ski lift of Eagle point, my family. That one gets a little tricky. I had to hurry so I didn't get much detail for it. But you have a hammer underneath dad for how hard working he is, a bridge underneath Jared for his engineering, a trailer for Tyler since he's a hick wood chopper now, a jack hammer for Jeremy since he's the loco guero at work running the jack, money by Jacob since he's rich and doesn't even work, a Y for Janea since she's at the Y. Then for a DMB a book underneath Brandi since she never has time for us since she's always doing homework, truck and name tag for Elder Herdt, ipod for Chase since he's always got his ipod, a tanktop for Robert since he's always wearing a tank top, a book and name tag for Alec since he's always reading a book, writting a book, or making music, a terribly drawn chess piece for Bret since he's into that kind of thing, and spray paint and a tag for Elder Velazquez since that's all I could think of and he wanted to try spray painting. Mint at the bottom right corner and my best friend Whitney and then a sun because so crayon drawing is complete without a sun with sunglasses.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The light shines after gratitude

It's so good to hear about the family all getting together. Who all came down? Oh man our Thanksgiving was so incredible.

So to start off about Turkey Day last week!

Steamboat had never had nor heard of a Turkey Bowl. I was dead set on organizing a football game so we did and Steamboat had it's very first ever Turkey Bowl! Only one member family from the ward came and 3 youth hahaha. But a ton of non members came so it was a success. Even a family visiting came! So that was good, building ward unity bit by bit! Then we played games with non members and members in the Ward Mission leader's home and had some awesome food. I even splurged and had dessert! Then back to work. It was a very succesful day with awesome lessons at the end with Joe and Nichole.

The light has begun to really shine in my life again beginning on Thanksgiving morning. I just prayed and said things I was thankful for and didn't ask for anything like my mommy used to challenge us to do. That really helped me to have confidence. My prayers have been desperate and in fear. That helped me to have confidence in His power and ability to help this area through whatever comes our way. Instead of, "please bless us this day to have success and have the Spirit because I'm really scared I'll mess it up and won't." "Thank you for your infinite power and willingness to help me this day if I truly focus on thee." Kinda like already knowing He's going to help us. That's real faith isn't it? So ya, that's filled me with such fantastic joy because now I know everything will fall into place even more than I did before. I trust 100 X's more than I ever had. Then for personal study I read over my journal to see all the revelation I've received in my life. I've been so ungrateful in forgetting what amazing things God has done for me in my past. Giving me so much peace, and inspiriation and guidance with school, friends, peace, and especially you. That helped me to see that I can still have that guidance out here. I forgot I was capable of that. It was a reminder that we all are. It also taught me to be myself out here. To act completely natural with everyone. To not be fake so that was really good. Man I just love the guidance we receive from the Spirit when we try to get it. After so much faking it till I make it, I feel I've made it. There is still so much more to come though.

Highlights for this week:

We're getting so much more work here and are doing so much better with OYMing everyone around us. You never know who's interested so it's so important to talk to everyone. And more important than just talking to them, caring about them. Not being afraid and hoping to get told no so that you can leave as soon as possible. But really talking with them. We've gotten so much more potentials and investigators. In OaPhYa. (Oak Creek, Phippsburg, Yampa) The 3 small towns that we cover we had dinner with a member. (I've sent a picture with their family) we talked about the Word of Wisdom with the Bro. He's never been real active but is seeing more and more importance in the Gospel and the truth and wanting to be a part of it. He's really awesome and holds true to the Gospel at work when people are hard on Mormons. He's a real stud. He apparently hasn't gone without chewing for a few months or years. He has gotten down to somedays only having one. So we challenged him to go a whole week without a single one. We felt to tell him to fill his mind with other things, scripture verses, hymns, pictures, his family, the temple, anything! And to write it down. And most importantly, come to church. While he didn't come to church because he couldn't make it in time for sacrament and had to be at work, he did go the whole week which was a miracle.

When something cool happens that tickles Elder Dean's peach he jumps up and down going "OOOOOOHHHHH!!!!!" really excitedly. When he eats on the couch he bounces up and down so I tried taking video of it. It cracks me up the way he does, I can't describe they way he does it. I wish I could take video of him all the time it's so funny the things he does. He'll brush his teach with both hands holding the toothbrush. One time after getting hot dogs at a gas station he goes "good thing I jacked some ketchup packets before I left! I mean I didn't actually jack ketchup. It was out for anyone to take. I didn't steal it." Or will say "I swear. I mean I actually don't swear. That's bad" While OYMing someone and in the middle of talking to him Elder Dean just stares at him in the eye extremely intently and gets closer and cuts us off asking if he has green eyes. Another time a guy walked past us and I left him to Elder Dean to OYM so he turns around and goes, "are you eating pizza!?" "no" *starts walking after him "Do you like pizza?!" *silence "have a good night." I ask, so what could we have done better? Elder Dean pouting: "I don't think he even heard me say have a good night" Or I'll ask someone, "hey have you every talked to Mormon Missionaries?" "no man that's not my thing I'm not interested in religion." He'll ask "why not?" and they'll get offended and get mad at us hahahaha. Poor guy. The ward is really supportive of him though. It's great to see.

The other night we had a lesson with Joe. He admitted that he'd been avoiding church and was too lazy to come to the baptism we had on Saturday. (2 baptisms in Steamboat back to back! One for the Elders and One for the Sisters!) He also admitted that his biggest hold back was marijuana. He feels the prophets today are of God, and while he loves his gay friends, he understands homosexuality isn't the most happy plan that God wants for us. He admits his biggest hold back is getting rid of marijuana. He knows he uses it as a crutch, escape and addiction which is amazing. He does want the Spirit and understands he has to find out for himself why it's not good and not be spoon fed by the prophets on what to do and what not to do. He'll very easily make it back in strength because he's admitted all these things and wants it. Luckily he's too broke to have weed haha.

Kirk's baptism was so peaceful. The most spiritual things to me aren't overwhelming. They're just very peaceful and comforting. They do give me so much energy to keep going through the awkward stuff. There is such a change in Kirk now when we see him. It's so unique how you can just tell there is something different. He told us the biggest thing he's learned is God's love for him. He says how happy he is now. He's invited his family to talk to missionaries and learn more even without us! It's amazing. He's so laid back. For a little he felt confused why he didn't feel some amazing rush from the Spirit even at baptism like some people talk about. But he now is content with what he has and talks about how happy he is and peaceful he feels in his life. He's even talked about his conversion with people at work so that's really neat. He's so awesome. I've learned such a love for him. He had Fred baptize him and Elder Dean and myself give talks and the sisters give a musical number.

Then Fransisco's baptism this week as well! 2 back to back! Kirk even came to it so it was neat for him. Fransisco is the Sister's investigator. He's 24 from Mexico. They sisters met him while teaching his ex-wife. He invited himself to the lesson and asked what he had to do to be baptized and invited himself to church as well all within first meeting them. He for a little thought he needed a greater answer. The sisters were really bummed about that. On Thanksgiving I asked when he was going to be baptized when it was just him and my companion and myself and he said his date so we talked about how it's so important and he knows enough. That caught the sisters off guard when they found that out haha. He has shared the Gospel with a lot of his co-workers and family members already before he was baptized and now wants to serve a mission which is amazing to see his desire to share with others. Fortunately he cannot because he's been married. Sisters haven't had the heart to tell him yet. He had me give a talk on baptism which I felt very honored to do. He also had Fred baptize him. And Elder Dean gave his testimony. It's the dearest thing when he gives his testimony. "It's just so wonderful now that you're baptized. You can be happy and stuff and it's so just wonderful. I just feel so happy for you. It's just so great." Letting the words out little by little and beaming the whole time talking.

There you have it. An extremely long letter to make up for last week and since my companion wanted to email for extra long today. I've been in this library for way too long haha.

I love you all and think of you all. The work is amazing. Maybe next time I won't be burnt out from writting some wisdom at the end haha.

-Elder Edgel

Letter to Dad

Can we see snowboarders and skiers? Oh yes... Yes we can. A bitter amount of times. We can see them as they come down the slopes. We see them on the streets... In all honestly it isn't painful. It's really fun to be around if anything. To see it and be around it is fun and the next best thing. At least everyone around me understands the magic of shredding.

Cold, why yes...In the negatives! It was amazing! President held (tried) us in doors for a little even. It feels so good to me. Church sounds awesome. I told one of the counselors about the stoner method Bishop shared with us and he asked if it was working. Anything on that? It's so great to see youth being so valiant. We can't ever overlook the potential of youth. We may be annoying and unlearned and way too energetic but man, they are so valiant in sharing the Gospel. Youth bond easier with one another I suppose.

I'm loving my mission so much. The infinite amount of things I'm learning and growing from and how it will prepare me for my future life. I'm so glad to have the example of my father. Currently I'm learning trust in our investigators/less actives/recent converts/Elder Dean to be able to learn and grow. To trust the Spirit to teach them the most valuable things. I can't change them. Only they can.

Kirk and Joe are definitely progressing. There is such a change in Kirk and Joe is realizing how he needs to change.

More in my epistle.

Elder Edgel

Thursday, December 5, 2013

God loves us and the Gospel is very important and makes us more happy.

I'm trying to learn the full velocity of what I'm doing as a missionary. It's quite enormous. The importance of the Gospel is hard to grasp. All I know is that God loves us and the Gospel is very important and makes us more happy.

My district is amazing. They're so awesome. Last week we had a zone conference. Our zone is small with only two districts. Elder Jordan and I. My pops and I as the DL's. :) That's pretty cool. I'm so glad I can stay in contact with him and sit with him in zone meetings and hear his wisdom throughout the meeting. He goes home after this transfer though.

This week we had a training by Elder Hamblin and myself on finding. Every training we have is on finding and member presents. The zone leaders attended this district meeting. Our standard is to find 6 new investigators a week and have 8 member presents. Ask the missionaries what they're standards of excellence are. Stay involved with them. It's hard but we know it's inspired and we can reach it.

We went on exchanges with the zone leaders. Elder Condie came to Steamboat. He's a great missionary. He may sound very monotonous but he loves the work and does have a passion in talking with people. He taught me a lot. We OYM'd everyone. (street contact, open your mouth). He runs up to them when they're all the way down the street and shares the gospel. And it works. We found a pretty solid potential that way. It was really cool. He told us that he'd been looking for something to fill him with serenity. So he taught me to run to people with a smile. "I lit myself on fire and they came to watch me burn." Light yourself up with excitement and people will wonder, "why on earth is this weirdo running up to me and so happy?" It's helped me a lot to not care what people think and just love them and the Gospel.

One night after a very spiritual experience we were oyming and saw a figure in the distance so we ran all the way down the street (in 15 degrees on ice) and caught her just as she was about to go inside. (we called out to her and didn't sneak up on her like previous). She was completely weirded out. Why are you running in 15 degrees? "because our message has changed our lives so much that we want to share it with everyone!" Ok... well I'm going to go inside now...

In district meeting today doing role plays. Elder Dean role playing on a bus talking to a non member.
"how's it going" "pretty good" Do you like riding buses?" No." "Why are you on a bus?" Because I have to." "we ride buses so we can corner people and talk to them because they don't have anywhere to go." (seriously) I come in and say we're going to start over and not creep them out and be more serious. Investigator pretends to text. "....Who are you talking to?" (serious straight faced.) hahahahha everyone started busting up laughing. He's a hit.

OYMing is hard for me because sometimes I feel I do it because I have to and it's not from the heart. So I start feeling weird. But I'm learning to put my heart in the right place with love and charity. It's been stressful and my mind has been cluttered thinking about what I can do better. A lot of peace has come to me accepting these trials and realizing I need to put my heart in the right place.

Kirk is being baptized this Saturday! :) We had his interview and have been teaching him about repentance and the law of chastity. The Law of Chastity was actually a really good lesson on how relationships and lives can be so much happier. Our lessons have never been amazingly Spirit filled, yet Kirk sees the difference. The Spirit works to what we need. It's so amazing.

Joe is having questions on the church. He's wondering if we're in an apostasy and the prophets have been faltered. He doesn't want to accept no marijuana and no gays. So we had a powerful lesson on how he has to be ready to give those up if he wants answers. Reminded me of Alma 12:10-11. If we harden our hearts things will literally be taken from us. Knowledge, reassurance, our testimony. If you hold your testimony dear, if you want a better one, then keep your heart open to the fact that you just may be wrong. I've had to do that this week because I've noticed the Spirit is not with me as strong. God will give amazing things to our understanding when we are humble.

I love you all. The church is so true. Even I am gaining more and more of a testimony of it everyday.

-Elder Edgel