Monday, July 28, 2014

Q & A

Hello again family!

I will start by answering questions that Mom has sent me.  It's tons easier to answer questions that to actually think of things to write.  I'm excited.  

[Is it hot and humid there?]

Yes.  All the time.  It's disgusting.  Every morning, walk out onto the porch, take a deep breath, and say out loud:

"Man, I am so glad I live in Vancouver, Washington."

Seriously, it's the Garden of Eden up there.  

[Are you getting along with your companion?]

Yep!  We just had transfers.  It was super sad seeing elder Sorenson go, but it was his time.  He was excited, but nervous to go home.  And it probably didn't help that I kept finding him articles about marriage in the Ensign.  

Elder Seastrand is my new companion.  He and I were actually in the same district last transfer, and we've been on exchanges before, so we get along.  He just bought a bunch of Pokemon cards today, so that was awesome.  

[How is the ward treating you?]

Pretty good.  The problem is that they had a bad missionary a couple of years back, and everyone remembers him.  So it's hard getting them to trust us.  But we have several fantastic families in the ward that are willing to do a lot to help us further the work.  

[What keeps me firm in the Gospel when I experience doubts and challenges?]

Several things.  Diligent scripture study is a big help, as well as prayer.  I also try to always remember the spiritual experiences I've had in my life.  Satan is really good at getting us to forget the things that built up our faith in the first place.  I ask God to help me remember the events in my life that have developed my testimony, and that helps a lot.  

Not much has happened this week. I got to see elder Rowley from my MTC district and talk to him about this business idea elder Klake and I had in the MTC.  He's totally on board.  Good thing we don't have to worry about that for a while, but still, exciting! 

I also figured out that Slenderman is real.  He's Cain.  It all makes sense.  

What kind of car did you get?  I want pictures!  Also, i'm working on taking more pictures, so expect some of me next week.  

I can't think of much else to say.  We have a couple of investigators that are progressing, and we're excited about them.  The biggest thing that has helped me with missionary work is genuinely caring about the people you serve.  That's a big one.  All our investigators are awesome.  

I hope everything is going well back home!  I keep thinking about Spongebob for some reason.  You should watch another episode for family home evening.  Maybe the one where he rips his pants.  Or the one where they deliver the pizza.  Or the marching band one.  Or the one where Patrick helps Spongebob pass his boating exam.  Those ones are all awesome.  

Elder Jordan Morgan

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

If The Nineth Lion Ate the Sun

Hello again family!  

What is new... The crazy bible basher lady has started to ignore us when we see her.  We think it's a combination of our refusal to argue, us helping her sister find her house, and one of our investigators talking to her.  Make a note: Being Christlike is good.  It only took me 21 years.  Go figure.  =)

So people always ask "What advice do you have for someone who is preparing to go on a mission?"  It's a hard question to answer, because you don't want to say something that is super obvious, like "Read the scriptures." (You should, though.  Read the scriptures.) You also don't want to say something really nebulous, like "Become a disciple of Christ."  You want to give something easy to understand, and practical.  So this week as I was pondering this, I had a flash of inspiration.  Something that really, truly helped me prepare for my mission.  So to all those who are wondering what you can do to prepare to serve a mission, this is the advice I give:

Work in retail.  

I am not joking in the slightest.  A large chain shopping market is preferable.  Lowe's, Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Wal-Mart if you're particularly brave.  I can't think of anything I did back home that gave me more practical experience for what the mission field is like than working customer service at Lowe's.  So that is the advice I give you all.  

This week has been good.  Three of our investigators have doing super well.  Like, they're about ready to fall into the font.  It's going to be awesome.  One is a black couple in their 80's, and they are pretty much some of the coolest people out there.  And I've met his mom, who is 99, about to turn 100, so my idea of "old" has been changed forever.  We're super excited for all of them.  Imagine that?  The thing I like most about my mission so far is meeting new people!  Maybe it's because I don't have the internet anymore.  But people are like a human internet!  Does that make sense?  Probably not.  Oh well.  

So I found out that my new companion is Elder Seastrand, who is actually in our district already, and he's awesome.  We've been on exchanges before!  Also, this will be my fourth transfer in Plainfield, which I am totally fine with, because Plainfield is pretty awesome and I love the people here.  We're going to convert the whole city, Dan Jones style.  Or like that episode of the Simpsons with The Leader.  "A Leader Bean!"  

Also, elder Seastrand and I have decided to start every morning by leaping out of the bed at 6:30 and high-fiving in the air.  We just want to get each day started off on the right foot.  It's going to be awesome. 

So has anything interesting happened back home?  We really don't hear anything.  And we're fine with that, because we've learned that the world is an awful place.  Like elder Sorenson was scrolling down on facebook and saw that someone he knew posted the trailer for 50 shades of grey, and everyone was super excited.  Showed me some of the comments people were making, and I was like "We live in Babylon!"  It's alright.  Christ is coming back.  And there's going to come a point where the world is going to need to lean on the members of this church.  

I hope everything is going well, because things are going great here.  I've found out that I'm in charge of what I like, so I'm not worried about losing my personality, or doing anything that I don't like, because I can just decide to like it!  It works super well, you should all try it if you're not doing it already.  I love you all!

Elder Jordan Morgan

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Pros and Cons

This week has been a little bit eventful:

We found 5 new potential investigators this week.  That was pretty sweet.  We teach them tonight and tomorrow.  They're all totally getting baptized.  

The members do feed us really well.  I've become a legend in the ward because I don't eat a ton.  I'm just not a big fan of food in general.  Which is fine, because it keeps me from gaining weight.  Seriously, you look at the pictures of some of the missionaries out here before their mission, and you can hardly recognize them.  

My favorite parts about being on a mission are: 

1. The time goes really fast, because you are really busy.  
2. You get to spend all of your time teaching/talking to people about the gospel.
3. You get to meet cool people and find out more about them. 
4. You get to see really weird things.  Like, really weird.  
5. You get to make some cool friends.  Elder K is one of my best friends now, and we're going to start a business together when we get back from our missions.  

There are more, but I can't think of any off of the top of my head.  

Some things that are challenging:

1. People won't listen to you. 
2. Our ward in particular doesn't exactly trust missionaries.  I guess the ones they've had in the past were a little lacking.  Like the one who, while living with members, would sneak out at night to go spend time with a less active girl in the ward.  And then, after his mission, came back and married her.  That sort of thing tends to make people not trust missionaries that well.  
3. I miss the internet.  The internet is awesome.  I also realize how much fun stuff I had to do back home, and how I never did any of it.  Seriously, i'm never going to even be able to be bored again.  

But my mission has been fantastic so far, and it's only going to keep getting better.  It's weird to think that i've served six months.  And there was a year in between two of those, so it went by really fast.  I'm glad I'm out here.  

I hope everyone is doing well.  It's super great to hear about everyone being super spiritual.  Please do everything you can to keep that up, because it'll be awesome.  I've seen what happens to families that start to relax when it comes to spiritual things out here, and it's not good.  

I will write again next week.  Have fun!