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.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Medalian family baptism, Medalian family, Mission leader who everyone says looks like he could be my brother, Lakewood zone

The Lord sees weaknesses differently than rebellion.

Pretty humbling the one about The Lord sees weaknesses differently than rebellion. I've gotten those two confused for a long time. I was taught and always raised up that when you serve a mission, you serve your hardest. You give everything and you obey everything. It's been hard to see missionaries not do that. It stinks being around missionaries and to not feel the Spirit from them. It really stinks that consecrated missionaries that follow God's will more than their own will can be rare. I can quickly jump to the conclusion that they're rebelling and instead I need to really work on loving and seeing it as a temporary set back. My calling isn't Abiniadi's. These are still some amazing young men and women and they deserve a lot more love.

Yes I'm outtie. I'm getting transferred out. Our guess is to Centennial which I think is the Stutz's stake so that'll be interesting.

Elder Rhoades has amazing leadership and efficiency skills. He's one of the best zone leaders in the mission with how easily he gets along with missionaries and gains their trust and how prepared he is for everything as a zone leader. He's like a Gadianton Robber infiltrator. He can make friends with the most disobedient missionaries and gain their trust and find out everything thats going on in the mission that needs to get reported. In my bye bye book (a journal that missionaries have other missionaries and investigators and members sign) he wrote, "Your probably the most christlike missionary I've met and served with. You stand up and live exact obedience under every circumstance, I have mad respect for you" It meant a ton for me to hear that for him. I testify that facing with the Savior is always worth it despite the trials and pressure we may be under! This transfer was tough but I've learned a ton and have grown a lot. I've been brought to my knees and humbled and because of that I've realized the need for improvement and am working on it. I could have been a lot more Christlike in my correction. I'm working on my patience still haha.

I got to go on exchanges with an Elder Jensen! My 5th exchange with him! I was his zone leader back in Grand Junction and he has grown a TON since the first time we served with each other. He was so afraid and timid and has grown to be so much more confident and capable and social able. It's so great to see his improvement. Together we taught 6 lessons, found 3 new investigators and set 2 of those new investigators on date. We make a great team!!

We set a 17 year old girl Mikayla on date for March 22. She's been struggling a lot in her youth to find happiness and has been trying different churches out and trying to be closer to God. She said "yes" before I could finish the baptismal invite haha. I'm so bummed I won't be able to teach her. Edthnie is a 28 year old with a 6 year old that wants to find the truth. She asked if it was alright if her sister came to church with her because she wants to find the truth too. HECK YA!!! The day before that I called a new investigator that my companions had found on exchanges while I was gone a woman in her 30's. I called to set up an appointment but she said she's not sure with a lot of things going on her life. So I kept talking to her and asked what was going on and she said a lot of emotional struggles that she's been dealing with for the past 10 years. I asked if she wouldn't mind sharing and then suddenly someone I've never met told me in tears how she's been lesbian and dating a girl for the past 10 years and just recently broke up with her because she feels God wants her to start a family with a husband and she wants to follow God. She said she's afraid of what people would say if they knew she was meeting with us but she agreed that this phone call was definitely a sign from God that she needed to. Ever since she's loved reading the Book of Mormon and so I told her I'd be at her baptism and finally meet her since I'm being transferred haha.

I got to see the Medalens one last time before I get transferred. We had dinner with them and it was so great to see that family. I've loved my time here. I've loved my trials here and the refiners fire. It's taught me to be more confident and stand up to lead. It's taught me be definitely be more charitable and to see the best in my companions and in missionaries no matter what they say about me or what decisions they make.

In our Zone Leader Conference Call we have on Tuesdays to report upcoming baptisms, our mission president counselor quoted Elder Rhoades, their area 70 who said "Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ will always make sure that there will always be an abundance of low hanging fruit". I definitely know it's true where ever you are! I've grown in so much more faith in miracles on my mission! If you hold out faithful God will bless you with that low hanging fruit. If we hold out through our trials, stay faithful to God and not to man and see the blessings of our hardships and trials from even other people's faults, God will send us to the promised land!

I love you all!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Praying to see others positive side

Shout out to Jasmine Reffnar, and Bruce Anderson! You wrote me an awesome letter and I accidentally threw away the envelope so I have no idea what your address is!! Please email or write me again!
Shout out to anyone else that might have written me the past 5 weeks. The letters got lost when I got transferred out to Denver.

Maaaaaannnnn oh man!!!! I love my mission!!! This week was a great improvement. I don't ever like talking about negative things but I think it's appropriate to show the change that happened this week. This has been the hardest companionship to get along in for me. My companions and I are just different in the way we do things and we've butted heads and clashed a bit. It's been pretty miserable at times worrying if they hate my guts and also being a jerk back to them. We've also struggled being effective because of the contention and conflicts so we've struggled. This week was the hardest but also the best. I decided to reflect a few mornings in a row for my personal study and to wake up early to have extra time to ponder on how I could be better in this companionship. I fasted and prayed a lot and realized how judgmental I've been and have been blinding myself to their positive side. So I decided to stop judgments completely and start focusing on their good and we had a great few days. Then on Sunday we had a comp inventory and all apologized for our wrongs. That last day we worked our hardest and saw miracles and had our best week the whole transfer. It's helped me to finally learn things I've struggled with my whole mission of being judgmental and not as loving to missionaries.

I went on exchanges with Elder Mataalii on bikes. We taught 5 lessons together and set 2 people on date after just meeting them. We found this lady named Letty and her 3 kids. Ely who is 13 and the only one over the age of 8. She said that her sister converted when she was 18 but she wasn't ready to look into it then but felt she would in the future. When she saw us though she said she got excited for us to teach her and when we asked if she'd be baptized she was hesitant as people normally are so we got nervous but then said "well I have to have my brother in law do it so as long as he can, ya" It was a great testimony that the Lord is preparing people all over the world and in our zone.

On Wednesday our mission president, President Murdock came out with us for a few hours. It was awesome being able to teach with him. And hear him testify to our investigators.

Natasha and Ben decided to move to Indiana! Her nephew doesn't really have functioning parents right now so she and Ben talked and they decided to move down to take care of him and gain custody. Everything has been going so perfectly for them. Ben found a new job that pays 3 X's more money and is way more fun. They already bought a great house with 8 acres for super cheap. They already called the Bishop and are excited to drag Natasha's parents to church as well. Our President came with us to teach them and is getting in contact with the mission president over there so we're not worried at all about the transition.

As I mentioned before I've done a lot of thinking and praying. I wondered a lot on how I could be a better leader and what a leader was in the first place. I thought a lot about the example of the Savior's leadership and how he was perfectly loving and understanding to everyone. He never judged his people. When they lifted them up all instead of thinking "man these guys are idiots!!! Why don't they ever get it!? Why are they so deficient?" He said "Father forgive them. For they know not what they do." I've been humbled a lot this transfer in the way that I treat others and the need to focus on their positive and to just have an unconditional love for them despite their weakness. I'm so grateful for Atonement helping me to change my nature and to be able to keep getting up and trying again. I'm so grateful for my mission. I'd be in a gutter if I hadn't served the Lord and given up my desires to do the will of the Father.

Funny/awesome story: Last night an older lady refused to talk to us or let us in when it was freezing cold outside. We joked around with her about how cold it was but she had a little bit of an attitude and told us that we thought we were Christians but really weren't. Elder Rhoades with so much love for her said, "Jesus would let us in. You can claim that your Christian all you want but until you prove it through your works, you're not a true Christian." BAM LADY!!

I love you all!!

Elder Edgel