Monday, March 28, 2016

Week 39: "Hoppy" Easter

Hello family and friends. Hoppy Easter. I hope your Easter was very Hoppy. This week was awesome we had a lot of fun. It was also pretty long. In our area we have to put in all the old paper records into our record keeping app on our iPads (called the Area Book). We have so many to do and all of them need to be done by Tuesday, so we have been doing a lot of that, but it's been a lot of fun finding old investigators to see if they are prepared now or later.

Some of the highlights that happened this week was we had some great lessons. We had a lot of chances to go finding and had pretty great lessons with some new investigators. We also got a few members to go out with us. One of which was a guy named Alan. He is a stud. He went on his mission to Portugal and got home about a year ago. We went to go see one of our new investigators. He had a lot of good questions and he kept talking about how his brother died and he doesn't understand why God would do that to him. We taught the restoration and focused on the keys of the kingdom of God. We told him that through the power of God he can live with his family forever and see his brother again. It was a great lesson. After, Alan bought us crawfish. It was the first time I ate crawfish and it was really good.

So there were a lot of great things that happened this week, but the biggest one is I feel so grateful for the sacrifice of my savior Jesus Christ. I can be clean from any sin, any struggle, any hardship that I come across and he will take it away. I believe that is the greatest gift of all. I feel the peace and love of my Savior. I'm grateful for this Gospel and I know that the church is true! There is no possible way that it could be false. I know that God has blessed my life with heroes in my life to help guide me find the truth as well. I invite all y'all to check out "The Priesthood Man by President Henry B Eyring April 2014". Look for the heroes that have helped change your lives, and also look how y'all can impact the lives of others. This talk was given to men, but could be related to everyone.

I love all of you! Have a great week!

Love, Elder Heiner

My supplements from mom.

Yummy Food.

My Desk

Monday, March 21, 2016

Week 38: Contacting Works!!

This week was one of the slowest and fastest weeks I've had! I don't know how that works but it does. But I'm so excited to talk to all of y'all today. First thing is Happy Easter next week🐰🍳 (I couldn't find a normal egg so I guess that's just what I'm going to have to work with)!!!!! But I'm so excited for Easter; we have been going around and sharing the new Hallelujah video with everyone. I absolutely love my savior for giving me the opportunity to live again, especially with my family. Well Elder Phister and I have been contacting off the wazoo. We went contacting almost every day this past week and we had very little success. But each and every one of those days where we went out and contacted we saw small blessings come. It wasn't until Sunday where we had a load of blessings come in. But one of the things that Elder Phister and I say all the time is, with so much emphasis is: "Contacting Works!!"  Because as we focus on the positive, our lives are more positive. The same goes with the negative, as we focus on the negative our lives will be more negative. But this week was pretty darn positive!

Did y'all know at Spanish is difficult to learn, I didn't realize that until I jumped back into a Spanish Ward. Well it is pretty tough, but wow, Spanish is awesome! I feel like a brand new missionary, talking about this, haha. But what's even more awesome are the people who speak Spanish. Each and every person (casi) who speaks Spanish is so nice! The culture is so much different and it is a blast because there are so many people from so many different places here. For example, we have 3 main investigators and they are all from different countries. One is from Honduras (he's very difficult to understand), one from Venezuela, and the other is from Mexico. So I love being a part of the different cultures otra vez.

One of the highlights of the week was that we got the chance to go to the temple. Our president is very big on Family History work, so for the past few months he has planned for each of us to have the chance to go to the temple only if we have one of our family names. I got one!!! None of the work had been done for the family member I found so I got the chance to do all the work in the temple for him. It was such a great experience to be able to do baptisms, confirmations initiatories, and the endowment. It was a very spiritual moment! I'm so grateful that we have the opportunity to give those who have passed on a chance to hear and accept the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is incredible that our loving Heavenly Father has provided the way for these miracles to occur. I encourage all those reading this to get a temple recommend, if you don't have one do all you can to do so. But if you already have one, stay worthy of it, and go as much as you can! There is no other place on Earth where you can feel more peace! Uhh, the temple is amazing!!!

On Friday and Saturday we went out finding for most of the day, and we found a lot of closed doors and Jehovah Witness flyers (we were collecting them to see how many we could get, I had 6 by the end). But one miracle was, after a hard day of contacting, we had this kid come up to us and ask us if we could help him find a job. We told him our church is all service but if he comes to church someone could help him out. He also told us that he is super excited because he has been trying to come closer to God. It's pretty incredible, when we go out and do the work of the Lord, he will bless us!

On Sunday we had a great day at church, and I got the chance to go to the young men's classroom and share a thought with them. It went really well. We are focusing on everyone being missionary minded, and all the youth said that they would love to come out with us. So we are going to get them and their parents out with us. At church we had one of our English class members come named Jose, and we got to teach the Restoration with him after church. We taught it at a park, and it was freezing cold yesterday! As we taught it Elder Phister were both tripping up on our words because of the cold, but the spirit really took over. He came to America from Venezuela to learn English, so he could go back and teach kids how to talk and write in English. He said that he was going to a church, but he felt like he needed something more. So when he came to our church he stayed for the whole 3 hours and was telling everyone that he feels like this could be the church he is looking for. At the beginning of the lesson we had with him he asked u what the name of this lesson is and we told him it is the Restoration, he was confused but we told him to wait just a bit and we will explain. As we started he really understood the need for prophets and why they were so important. He understood all of Christ's earthly ministry but didn't think that the church of Jesus Christ fell. But Elder Phister pulled out Matthew 21:43 and he was blown away. As we shared the restoration of the gospel through Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon he understood why the lesson was called the Restoration. He said that he was really excited to read the Book of Mormon as well. He also accepted a soft baptismal invitation. He is awesome and so prepared. I love it! He was also telling us that he wants his family in Venezuela to go to this church too! Aaaaahhhhhhhh it was amazing! Isn't it incredible that after a long week of little success the Lord gives us a diamond, someone who is looking and searching for the Gospel? I love this work!!!

Throughout the rest of the day we went contacting and we had a ton of success. It's funny how that works! We even found a family that had been baptized but is extremely less active. They aren't even in our records, and we had a lesson with them and committed them to church. So many miracles happened this week. It was just incredible!

Spiritual thought: I had the opportunity to read Mosiah 5 this past week and it is a very powerful chapter. My favorite verse is one that many of you may have read over many times, but it is verse 15. This scripture describes and promises the blessings that we will have only when we are steadfast, immovable and always abounding in good works. I encourage all y'all to read Mosiah 5 and find ways to how you can apply this chapter to your lives!

I love all of you so much and hope you have a fantastic week!

Love, Elder Heiner

Monday, March 14, 2016

Week 37: Es Rico No? (Is It Not Rich?)

Hello, hello family and friends! I am so excited to tell you about this week. I am finally in an area that is pure Spanish. I am so excited! I am in The Woodlands. It is one of the richest areas in the whole mission, and there is a ton of people here. So it is much different than the country and different than the ghetto, but I am so happy to be here. I knew I was leaving Navasota, so I am pumped to be here in The Woodlands. My new companion is Elder Phister. He is a stud! He has been out for just over a year and we have been working really hard. I learned so much from Navasota, especially with contacting and talking to everyone because there were very few people there. Now that I'm back in the city, I talk to everyone still and it is so much fun, because there are SO many people, oh and there are a lot of stop lights too (which is not as fun)! But we had some really spiritual moments, and I'm excited to tell all y'all.

Tuesday: Elder Thorne and I left from Bryan/Navasota and drove down to the mission office. Elder Thorne finished his mission on Wednesday, and it was sad to see him go. I also had to say goodbye to one of the Hermanas, Hermana Larson, in my first district in the field leave. It is so crazy how fast time goes, it is literally mind blowing! Well I left with Elder Phister to The Woodlands. Elder Phister's companion was still with him, Elder Guzman, because he was waiting for his VISA 
and flew out to Trinidad that night. So we got to be in a trio companionship all day. It was a lot of fun! Trio companionships are the best! On Tuesdays we always get the chance to help out at a special needs facility for some of the older folks, and we get to play board games with them. It's so much fun and really cute to watch everyone. Service is amazing, it just makes you so happy for the opportunity to help those in need.

Wednesday: One of the members here is renovating his house, and we had the chance to go help him paint and work on his bathroom. We pulled a really funny move, we worked for 2 hours trying to get one of the sides of the shower in and right when we got it in, we realized the side was upside down. It was one of those moments when you just have to laugh, because it took us another 3 hours to get it all fixed. It was a funny but sad moment, but we finally got it done. That night we went and saw our main investigator named Angel. He has problems with the Word of Wisdom, and he is trying to stop his problem, and he is doing an excellent job at it. He is really close to stopping completely, and he feels so happy, because he really wants to be baptized. It was amazing to see the light in his eyes. Man, The Church is true!!!

Thursday: We have the chance to do Family History in the morning and find our ancestors. It is really fun, because we are all able to find our ancestors who have passed on. It is incredible! After, we had the chance to plan our week. This area is in need of a lot of help, and Elder Phister and I went over all of the concerns. So right now we are going to do a cleanse. We have planned to drop some of the investigators who are not progressing, and find those more prepared. We also have a lot of great plans for how we are going to help the members help the investigators. We are really excited for the blessings that we come our as we are faithful servants of the Lord.

Friday: We had a crazy lesson with an investigator. He had us read his religious text because we gave him a Book of Mormon. It had a lot of weird words in Spanish , and I didn't understand it very well. But he was really funny because he was obsessed with religious text. It was a fun lesson!

Saturday and Sunday: were pretty great we had the chance to see one of our investigators named Salvador and his mom, 
both days. We taught them the rest of the Rest . . . Oration haha! It was a really spiritual lesson. At the beginning I was struggling with my Spanish but then I stopped thinking and my Spanish just flowed. It was amazing! I also had the chance to meet a lot of the members in our barrio (neighborhood) and it was really cool to get to know new people! I love this area already and I'm happy to be here.

Today was a party. We had the chance to go to Top Golf with the new district. Then later we went to this burger place and it was sooo good. Then after we came back to our apartment and played beach
volleyball. We kept seeing people walk by and we invited them to come as well. It was a blast. It took me back to volleyball at home. It was so fun! It has been an amazing week!

Spiritual thought: One of the most powerful talks that I have listened to is Safety for the Soul by Jeffery R Holland April 2009 general conference. I invite all of you to watch the talk and when you are done, take a moment and listen to the spirit. This talk gave me the chills when I listened to it, and it definitely strengthened my testimony of the divine witness of the Book of Mormon! The Book of Mormon is true. I know it is with all my heart! It is amazing and I will never deny the truth of the Book of Mormon. When you know the Book of Mormon is true, you will know with out of doubt the Church of Jesus Christ is true!
I love you all so much! Have a great week and enjoy the pics! The Word of the day made me laugh so hard! Enjoy!

Love, Elder Heiner

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Week 36: Adios Navasota!

Well transfer calls are in, and I am leaving the metropolis of Navasota. It has been so much fun and I learned so much! I have been taught so much through the spirit, members, Elder Atkinson , and our investigators. I'm going to miss it! 

Shout out to the coolest 16 year old girl ever named Madison Heiner! She's Turing 17 tomorrow!! Man, my sister is almost as old as me haha! Happy birthday Maddy!

Alright so this week was awesome! We had a lot of good things happen, and the spirit was amazing! I'm pumped to tell all y'all about it!

We shall start the week with Wednesday. We had a really good lesson with Pablo and Lupe. We had them teach us the Restoration, and they did really good. It was their first time teaching us a lesson and they had a whole outline, and they taught it way better than I ever did in the MTC. It was pretty incredible to watch. They are so prepared for baptism they just need to take that leap of faith, and watch the blessings come! Later we went on a Easter egg hunt in the dark. We filled Easter eggs with little finger lights and they glowed so well. With the huge help of a member in our ward we got Pablo and Lupe there, and they went Easter egg finding with their 3 kids. It was really fun!

We had a great day on Thursday, and did a lot of finding, we actually talked to a lot of borrachos (drunk people). We talked to this one who was preaching to us about the resurrection and he said, " This will blow y'alls minds, Jesus Christ died for us and then rose on the seventh day," his buddy said, no its the third day, and then the first guy was like, I know that's what I said; the third day, and he did it so we can live again, doesn't that just blow your mind (he said it all in a drunk accent)! We were like yeah, that's crazy man, haha! It was fun, but it is awesome to see that people, even when drunk, have a strong faith in Jesus Christ!

Friday we had Zone Conference and we learned a lot. I have been out for so long that a lot of the things that we talk about, I have already learned, so it was a great review! We also had the chance to do service at the Birthday Bash. It was a giant party in Navasota. We talked to a lot of good people, and did some great service.

Saturday was a ton of fun, but in the morning I had no desire to work, but then I had the idea to read Jacob 6 and it is very straight forward, and it was really powerful. After I had a change of heart the day went really well.

Sunday was really good as well and we had a lot of success. We shared a few lessons and all of them went well.

My spiritual message today is about Alma 36. In Alma 36 it talks about A
lma the younger and the experience he had with the Angel. In the chapter it talks about Alma being "harrowed" up. If you don't know what a harrow is, I invite you to look it up. But in that moment Alma was being harrowed up and was finally able to feel at peace. I know that when we look into our lives and let the spirit harrow us up we can feel at peace.

I love y'all so much and hope you have a great week!

Love, Elder Heiner