Wednesday, February 19, 2014

6 month mark!

Greetings once again from Chino, CA!  The work continues to go well here and I feel incredibly blessed and humbled to be a missionary for our Savior's church.  What a wonderful opportunity it is to preach the gospel and cry repentance all day long!  What a terrible feeling it is when 95% of people reject you!  But what an even more wonderful feeling it is when you teach the 5% that accept you and share with them the blessings of the restored gospel!  It's a give and take sort of life out here, haha.  We make the best of it though.

This week I officially hit the six month mark on my mission.  Crazy!  I can't believe that I'm already a quarter of the way done!  It's gone by so fast.  I can't vouch and say that this is the best two years of my life quite yet, because I haven't finished the whole two years, but I can without a doubt say that these past six months have been the ABSOLUTE best of my life.  A complete vacation from all worldly cares and a time to serve the Lord with all my might, mind, and strength.  Who could ask for more?

Anyways, since I turned six months it's customary to burn a tie.  So on Valentine's Day Elder Wagstaff and I were getting ready to do that in the evening.  As we were walking to an appointment we found a box that said, "Free Stuff" on the corner of a street.  We were intrigued so we looked through it and found a whole treasure trove of useless junk, but among it was a Twilight book.  Elder Wagstaff remarked, "Good kindling for your tie."  It was at that moment that I realized I had never lit a book on fire before.  Why not try it now?  So we took the book, doused it in rubbing alcohol when we got home, through it in a wheelbarrow to keep the fire from spreading, and lit it on fire.  It was awesome.  It did indeed make good kindling for my tie.

Elder Wagstaff and I have continued our walking efforts.  We've ditched the bikes and are on foot from now on. #bikestrike2014 We're calling it "Walkupy Chino."  Get it?  Like, Occupy Wall Street?  I thought it was pretty clever.  The other bike area in the zone has also joined the bike strike!  Soon we'll have the whole mission on foot!  It'll be great.

Speaking of the zone, I love my zone.  The elders and sisters I've met here have become some of my best friends that I've ever had.  It'll be sad to see some of us transferred away but I enjoy the moments we have together right now.  I think that's been one of the greatest parts of my mission, the friendships I've made.  Whether they be with members, missionaries, or non-members, I've made some great friends out here, people who I'll remember for the rest of my life.

We're emailing on Tuesday today because the library was closed so we just got out of district meeting.  I love district meeting.  It's a great time to be strengthened and uplifted by all the other missionaries in the district.  Today we had a great training from one of the Sister Trainer Leaders on extending commitments and how Captain Moroni did the same when he raised the Title of Liberty in the Book of Mormon.  It was great and I took a lot away from it, but what I took away the most is that if I want people to keep commitments I should tear my clothes off and write things on them, like Captain Moroni.  I'm not sure if that was her point, but I'm going with it.

One of the new investigators we found this week is the daughter of a less-active member of the ward.  We had a great lesson with her Sunday evening and she asked lots of great questions.  We're really excited about being able to work with her more.

I went on exchanges with my district leader this week into his area, which was awesome.  I learned a lot and had a great day.  One thing we were working on was talking with everyone we saw.  As missionaries we're constantly told that we absolutely HAVE to talk with EVERYONE that we see.  This is within reason, of course.  I'm not jumping in front of cars because I saw someone on the passenger side, haha.  Well, on exchanges we saw a man and his wife and his two girls.  We went up and just asked a casual question to get the conversation started but it kinda fizzled out and didn't go anywhere.   We started walking away and I thought, "Y'know, that man could be sealed with his wife and kids forever in the Celestial Kingdom of God if I would just go and talk to him."  So I turned around and began to bear my testimony of eternal families to him.  Nothing came out of it, we gave him a card and left, but I'll be darned if I'm going to let his salvation be jeopardized because of my unwillingness to act.

That's about all I can think of for now.  Thanks for all the support from back home!  I love receiving all of your letters and I'm sorry that I don't have time to respond to every single one of them.  Just know that I do appreciate them and love the support!

Your friend,
Elder Carter David Morgan

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