Wednesday, August 27, 2014

August 26, 2014

Hello everyone!!! Another week down and everything about it was good! Last week was really slow. We had lots of things happen but not very many lessons or discussions taught. But sill lots of cool things that happened! Before we get to that, there were some questions asked that I want to answer! I think that Tanner Galloway is going to go to California somewhere. And I think that Trevor Bursach is going to Argentina or somewhere in Europe. Things are really changing back home aren't they. I have been told by a lot of people that missionaries come home and are super disappointed because they are expecting things to be pretty much the same but it is not at all. People move, friends get married, unfortunately even some people pass away. I knew things were going to be different when the family moved to the new house but I didn't quite know how much different it would be. I still don't know I guess but it good to know that most things are changing for the better!

It is always sad to hear about people leaving the church and getting divorced. Even in the church, there are people who are actively going to church that still have lots of problems. I think that is because satan knows that we are on the right path and has to spend that much more time on us instead of those that aren't on the path. An example of this is in Lehi's dream in 1st Nephi chapter 8. There are a few different people mentioned. There are those that never grab onto the rod, those who grab on but let go halfway on the path to the Tree of Life, those who make it to the tree and taste of the fruit but fall away, and those that taste of the fruit and keep eating of it! Notice how it says that the people that were holding onto the rod and that made it to the Tree of Life were mocked. It doesn't say those who never grabbed onto the rod were made fun of or laughed at. The tree can be taken as the Church of Jesus Christ. There are many many people that are on their way to make sacred convenants such as baptism and there are many people that make it into the church! But it is these people that were mocked. After people fell away, they weren't mocked anymore, it was so much "easier" than staying on the path or staying at the Tree of Life. That is because satan knows this church is true and doesn't want anyone else to come to that same knowledge. And it tells us why those people that were at the Tree of Life fell away. It says "after they had partaken of the fruit". They stopped eating it! They stopped coming to church and reading their scriptures and praying. Whereas the other people were pressing "forward continually" toward the Tree and were mocked for continually "partaking" of the fruit. The only way that we can remain true to our covenants and to the church is by continually doing the things we know we must do.

There is my Spiritual thought for the letter. :) My clothes are fitting great! I have torn 2 of my pants though because my legs are getting so big (not from fat, muscle all the way!!). I have plenty of shirts and socks and garments. My shoes are holding up and I have more than enough ties! Elder Gilsons birthday was this last week!

On Thursday I learned something pretty interesting. Our church is not the only church to believe that we can become God's someday! To other churches, it is known as "Deification". I found a talk thing all about it from Keith E. Norton online. It was really interesting to find out that not all the truths were lost, but they were just scattered among all the other churches in the world. But it was the Priesthood that was lost/taken from the earth. Also, I found out that the Earth was in a "terrestrial" state when Adam was in the Garden of Eden. This also means that Adam and Eve had "terrestrial bodies" which is why they couldn't have children. After the Fall, the Earth "fell" too making it turn from a "terrestrial" state to "telestial" state. When Christ comes again, it will again be turned to a "terrestrial" state and then after the Resurrection and Final Judgement, it will become a "Celestial" state, even the Celestial Kingdom where the righteous will go to become Gods! Just some cool information to know! Later that night we got to attend a missionary setting apart for Calleigh Summers. She is going to Georgia. I would have loved to go down that way but I love it here even more so that's okay. :)

Friday we were asked by one of the missionaries out here, Elder Charles, to go visit a family he used to teach. Their name is the Boswell's. They weird thing to me was brother Boswell is the young mens president and all of him family is very active! So we stop by and his wife greets us warmly and quickly invites us inside to have strawberries with cool-whip. She told us that has been meaning to call us so that we can teach her daughter. Tori is 10 years old and not really their kid. Well, yet anyway. For the past 2 years, the Boswell family has been trying to adopt her. She has been coming to church for those 2 years and has begged her real parents to let her get baptized. But for whatever reason, her real parents have told her no. So she has just been reading her scriptures and praying and coming to church just like she knows she needs to because she knows it's the right thing to do. The cool thing is, the Boswell's should finalize the adoption papers by the 19th or 20th of September! That means Tori can get baptized! So we talked with her and set a baptism date for the 20th of September so she can get baptized right after the adoption which is what both she and her parents want. She is such an inspiration to me! How often do we want something really really bad but are told no and so we just give up. She knew what she wanted and it was a righteous desire and the Lord is most definitely going to bless her and her family for their continual diligence to the right, even though it was a hard and long process.

Saturday we did some service for one of our investigators, Edward Seale. Ed is in his late 60's and lost his wife about a year ago. But it is still hurting very much and he is still down on himself for that loss. He has good reason to be sad but I am so so thankful to have the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation! It really lightens the burden and sting of death. Anyway, because of this loss, he has lost all desire to get work done around his house, especially his yard. So we came over with the sister missionaries and attacked his front yard with weed-eaters and rakes. It took us about 2 hours to get his yard done, that's how big it was. We didn't even rake it all cause we ran out of time. The weeds were easily over 4 feet tall throughout his yard! The ones against his house were over 6 feet tall! I couldn't see over them!! But we got it all down and mostly cleaned up and he couldn't help but cry. He is a very emotional gentleman and he definitely had a softening of his heart from this act of service! Keep him in your prayers that he will continue to feel of the Lord's Spirit and accept the message that we have. :) Something very sad happened on Saturday though... I lost my CTR ring... I was putting get in my hair after helping some members move and I remember taking it off to wash my hands and then we left right afterward. Somewhere either at their house or on the way to our house, it got lost. I can't find it in the truck and they've looked all over their house. It is sad but I've learned to let little things go that I have no control over. Like when I got my long board stolen, I was upset but I was able to let it go cause it is just a material thing, both that and my CTR ring can be replaced. I hope I find it someday but if not, life will go on!

Sunday was kinda awkward. We went to a farewell out in Fort Thomas ward. The whole meeting was off... The first speaker didn't look up from her paper for her entire talk. She kept the same dull tone the whole way through and took up 35 minutes of the meeting. That left Kody McNair with 10 minutes to speak. He started off by pulling out his phone and said, "Bare with me for just one second. I have to record this talk for those people that aren't here today." I'm pretty sure that isn't allowed... But the Fort Thomas ward is just kinda weird like that. Everyone is super close so you will hear people from the audience yell up from the congregation to the speaker in the middle of his talk! It is super weird...  But then Kody said, "Bishop asked me to speak on how I prepared myself for a mission. But instead, I want to talk on friends." I can see how you can tie friends into preparing yourself for a mission but he didn't even do that! He just blew off the topic Bishop had asked him to speak on. It was a very weird sacrament meeting.

But the highlight of my week was of course our Zone Conference with Elder Malm of the Seventy! Oh, he was AMAZING!! He didn't just stand up there and give some speech about what he thought our mission could do to improve. He stepped down from the pulpit, came in front of us missionaries, and talked with us like we were having just a normal discussion! He asked us what we thought we could work on to improve our mission. We talked about desires and obedience and perseverance when things look bleak. These are a few notes I wrote down from the meeting.

- Matthew 14:16-21 is the feast with 5 loaves of bread and 2 fishes. Christ took what they had, blessed them, and then gave it back to the apostles to give out to the people. It makes me think of Ether 12:27 where is says that the Lord will take our weaknesses and make them strengths. This is not for our benefit, it is for the benefit of those were are serving. The catch is, the apostles gave Him all they had for him to work with. We can't hold back anything from the Lord if we want to become the missionary (or member) we want to be someday.

- Matthew 14:25-31 is when Christ and Peter walk on water. We know that Peter took his eyes off of Christ and started to sink. Christ of course caught him and saved him. But then what? It doesn't say but we know it was stormy and the boat couldn't have traveled to where they were that quickly. So did they get back to the boat? This means (it is not doctrine but an opinion) that Peter walked back to the boat with Christ holding him up. Christ won't just catch us when we fall, but will walk with us when we need Him.

- STUDY HELAMAN 5!!! It is all about Nephi and how amazing of a missionary he was. There is something to be learned in EVERY verse in that chapter.

- A General Authority asked to people to come up to the stand as he was giving his talk. He handed them each an end to a piece of string that extended the entire length of the stage they were standing on. He walked to the middle of the string and tied another string into a knot around the long string. He then said, "This long string represents time and eternity. This knot is our life compared to the rest of it." Our life is so miniscule compared to the expanses of eternity! What am I going to do now to make this life actually mean something afterwards. Thinking about my mission, compared to the rest of my earthly life, this time is so small! And yet there is part of my mission that I can unfortunately say I was degressing or not learning anything at all instead of progressing and becoming the missionary I want to be. How will I look at my earthly life in a million years? Will I say I have lived it well or will I look back with regret? Then make those changed now.

- Never Run Faster Than The Holy Ghost!!! The Holy Ghost is the teacher and we are just the tools to help it come into their hearts. If we rush through a lesson, if we don't follow the promptings, or if we cut it off by talking, it will leave. Silence is the greatest tool the Spirit can use to teach people. That is one reason why the Celestial room is so amazing and why we can learn so much. Notice how there is little noise and that takes away most of the things that would distract us from listening to the Spirit.

- Ask ward council these 4 questions:
1) What is the goal for this ward?
2) Where do we want it to be in 2 years compared to now?
3) What goals do you want to accomplish?
4) What do we need to do to get this ward where the Lord wants it to be?

All of it was amazing but these are the major points that hit me and are helping me want to change the way I think about things and the way I do things. I got pictures with him afterward! I also got pictures with Elder Hickenlooper and our descendants! I forgot my card reader by accident so I will send them to you soon! I have just about filled up my card by the way. I think I have like 200 pictures left is all. I will send it home soon!

I love you guys so much! Thank you for your emails and helping me become the person the Lord wants me to be! I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!

~Elder Kyle Harris

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

August 20, 2014

Hello Family!! I am very sorry that I had to wait until Wednesday to email you guys! This week was transfers but Elder Gilson and I are staying companions and in the same area. I have mixed emotions about it. I love Elder Gilson and when we are talking about the Gospel or serving each other, there is most definitely a different Spirit around. We haven't really been fighting, but we do get into little quarrels and arguments. I have never really been good at remembering things, that what our planners are for. So if we talk about something 4 days in advance and we don't right it in our planners, I will most likely not remember. But Elder Gilson remembers everything. Well, "remembers" everything. Haha. But I'm learning that little things don't matter. It is better to be wrong than to drive away the Spirit.

The two people that sent you guys those pictures were Sister Brown and Sister Judd. Sister Brown is our bishops wife. We ate with them on Sunday. the other lady isn't even in our ward! She is in the Sister's ward! But her parents live in Pima 4th ward and we cover that one. Her mom is a less-active member but doesn't go because of her non-member husband. So we went over to Sister Judd's to set up a time that we could go eat with them and invite her parents over as well. Both of these families out here are amazing! 

Just a heads up as well, this upcoming week will be different. On Monday, we have Elder Malm from the 70 coming to talk to us as a mission. He is going to talk twice so that we can split the mission in half. Unfortunately, our day to listen to him speak is going to be next Monday. This means that our P-Day is going to be on Tuesday instead of Monday. 

This week was full of miracles and awesome stories! And the best part about writing in my journal is that I remember all the details from my week to make this a great email! The biggest and best thing that happened this week was I TURNED 14 months old!! I can't believe it but I am almost 14 and a half which means that I have single digits before I come back home... weird...

My mission birthday was on the 12th which was this last Tuesday. Also, Tuesday was "The Day" which means mission wide exchanges! I was with Elder Hales in the YSA wards. Elder Hales was my District Leader and it was BOMB!! We started off our day doing Crossfit. It was very much exhausting... We did a 15 minute AMRAP (As Many Reps As Possible) including:
- 10 Pull-ups
-100 Meter Run
5 cleans at 95 pounds (a clean means that you pick up the bar and have to bring it to your shoulder height then go with the bar in the air down into a full squat.)
- 100 Meter Run
That was 1 rep.... I did 6! :) It was extremely difficult but always feels good when you finish. Plus, I look more toned and muscular! I want to try and find a crossfit for when I come home but they are pretty expensive so we'll see. Because we were serving on the college campus and it was the YSA wards, there were teenagers and young adults everywhere! Oh it was so amazing being able to actually connect with people and be friends with people my age! Almost all of my friends in my wards have been 27 or 28, sometimes older. So talking to people my age was refreshing! I was kinda nervous cause I know how cute college girls are, but the really cool thing that I noticed was that I wasn't really attracted to any of them! I mean, sure they are cute but it wasn't like, "Oh I want to date them." It was just acknowledging they were cute and that was it! Look at who's growing up and maturing. :) Anyway, because school started this week, that meant that a lot of people were moving in from summer break. So we did a LOT of service. Actually, the very fist person that we saw needed help was an older gentleman and his daughter that were struggling to get things out of the back of the truck. So we went over and offered our help. Elder Hales jumped into the bed of the truck. I pulled the tailgate down and as I stepped up to get in and help, I heard a rip and felt a cold breeze run down my leg. I had torn my pants from the middle of the crotch in my pants to my knee on the inside seam of my leg. But instead of being super embarrassed, I just let them continue moving things and I walked over to my bag and grabbed my first aid kit. I had 2 safety pins that I used to close up the hole until I could change my pants. The gentleman felt so bad for me! He went into his wallet and pulled our $40! He said that 20 of it was for new pants and the other 20 was for lunch. He refused to take it back so we had to take it. We went and I had a change of pants at the house then we walked to lunch. As we finished ordering, I was reaching into my wallet to grab the $20 when someone grabbed my shoulder and reached past me giving their debit card to the cashier saying there were going to pay it. Of course, she was a member and was just on break. So we got $20 each for new clothes! :) Later, as we were street contacting, we were talking to this guy who was putting gas into his girlfriends car (she had run out just 3 blocks from a gas station). He was talking to his girl friend through her window to tell her that she should have enough gas to get to the gas station and so we were standing next to his truck waiting. The wind picked up and I felt some sprinkles of rain, it felt SO good! But Elder Hales said, "On no..." I looked down the street and we could see a wall of rain coming right at us... Within seconds, we were being down-poured on! The guy we were talking to got into his girl friends car and drove off. We ran under a tree but we were already both really wet. After a minute or two, Elder Hales said, "I wish this rain would stop so we could go do some work." We agreed that since we were both already wet, we could walk in the rain and be fine. Right as we stepped out from under the tree, the rain stopped instantly. We pointed out that we asked God for it to stop raining, then we put our faith in God by stepping out into the rain, and God answered our prayers right then! It was really cool to piece it all together. Nothing else really happened Tuesday and I just realized how lame those stories were but I spent like 10 minutes on them so I'm not going to get rid of it. :)

Wednesday, we got more fresh milk from Sister Squires! After district meeting, we went out to lunch at the Golf Course. We had all you can eat wings for just $4! Talk about a deal!! Of course, I took advantage of that and stuffed myself full. The only problem was that it was about 3 o clock when we left. We had to be in Fort Thomas for a lesson by 5:30 so our dinner asked us to come over at 4... When we showed up, I wasn't hungry at all.... They made steak with potatoes and fresh corn from their corn field in the back yard. I actually ate everything on my plate! Elder Gilson asked for a to-go container cause he was full. He didn't even touch his steak and very little of everything else. I was kinda mad cause I felt like it was disrespectful to hardly touch what was given to us. But, they were just fine with it! So we drove up to our appointment in Fort Thomas and as we walked in, Terry Fisher (our investigator we are working with in Fort Thomas Ward) said, "I hope you boys are hungry! I made steaks and potatoes for you guys! My stomach was already hurting eating so much, the last thing I wanted to do was eat more. But we did. It was great steak though! And I, once again, ate everything on my plate. I could hardly hold it down but I did it. Elder Gilson once again asked for a to go box cause he was so full! I totally won today in who could eat the most! Speaking of which, my appetite has been going down the drain since I've been on my mission. I used-ta-could eat a whole subway sandwich and now, I can only eat a 6 inch. I used-ta-could eat a whole burrito from Cafe Rio and now, I eat half of a burrito and I'm stuffed. I'm losing weight but it's not from fasting, it's from not being able to eat as much. It's weird for me but saving money so I'm not complaining! :)

Thursday we ate with the Reed family. Dad, you know that trick where you have a coin or ring in your hand and you tell the kid you are doing the trick to that you are going to count to 3 and then they need to grab it but you put it on your head instead? Well, I have really been working on that one. And I have done it with a lot of kids out here. And all of them love it! Well, that is, except the Reed kids. They saw it once and all of them at the same time said, "That's not magic. You just put it on your head." Talk about a tough crowd... But the dad went to the Cook islands and taught me a new word in whatever language they speak over there: Aka'tomukamuka means cloudy or overcast. It has been aka'tomukamuka here recently and it's been fantastic! :) Later that night, we went over to a less-active members house called the Hines. The father buys and sells antiques like grandpa Harris! He had some pretty cool things too. The newest cool thing he has was a sword from the civil war! He let us hold it and take pictures with it! The rumors say that if you ever get to see one in person, let alone hold one, then it will bring you good luck for the rest of your life! I like those odds. :)

Friday we went on exchanges again. Elder George, my district Leader, came to my area with me. We were up till past 1 a.m. talking then up at 5:30 for crossfit. That day, we did:
- 30 Double-unders (you have to jump rope but instead of just going under you once, it has to go under you twice for each jump. Or you could do 60 normal jumps.)
- 15 power cleans (You have 55-75 lbs [or more] and you have to lift from the ground up and over your head in one fluid motion.)
It was just those 2 things but it was another AMRAP for 6 minutes. I did 4 reps plus 30 double-unders and 5 power cleans making 4 +35. Afterwards, we helped the sister tract. We went out into the boonies of Pima and knocked out there. In an hour, we only knocked 4 houses cause we were having so much success! The first was a girl named Angelica. She was 15 but looked 20. She and her family are catholic but she has lots of Mormon friends. In fact, her best friend had taken her to girls camp for the last 3 or 4 years! And she loved it! She said that when they read from the Book of Mormon up there and talked about Christ, she would always feel a drive to do better when she came home. We gave her her own copy of the Book of Mormon and she could hardly believe that we were just giving it to her! The sisters were supposed to go over on Saturday but I don't know if they did, I will have to ask for next time! The next door we got rejected but the sisters will try back again on Saturday too. The 3rd house was very damaged and looked completely abandoned. No one answered but we met a guy on the street on our way to house number 4 who lived in that broken down home. His name is Ray Delgado. He had just gotten out of jail that day and came home to his house broken into and vandalized and everything stolen. This was his story: 6 months ago his wife passed away... He couldn't handle it and the only way to push those memories and thoughts of her out of his head was to drink them away. Well one day about a month after her passing, he walked into someones yard looking for his friend. The lady that owned the house was very scared cause she was a widow and someone had broken into her house a few nights ago and so she sicked her dog on him. For self protection, he grabbed a shovel and hit the dog. The lady bent down to grab the dog by the leash and somehow scratched herself. When the police showed up, she said that he was trespassing, abusing her dog, and hit her. He was arrested and put in jail for 5 months. He tried to kill himself and so they released him after that 5 months to go to a mental hospital. But he realized that while he was in jail, he got over his addictions for drugs, alcohol and came closer to God! He then said, "I know me being in jail was a blessing for me." That day he got out, he went right to that lady's house and apologized to her and forgave her for everything. He told us that he knew God loved him and that the Bible was true but he could tell it was missing some things. So we talked to him about the Book of Mormon and about the Plan of Salvation for him and his wife. The sisters are going to be meeting with him too and helping him get over his depression and come closer to God and Jesus Christ! The last house we got chased off by dogs. Like, a 100 meter dash to stay away from the dogs! It was kinda scary but kinda funny cause neither of us was expecting it! That night we went to a family named the Buckmister's. Sheran, the wife, is a non-member. She had just gone through a very dangerous and extensive surgery. She had cancer in her mouth which basically ate away the bone in her jaw. So she had her Tibia taken our of her left leg and that's what they used to reconstruct her jaw. She was going to have to go through another surgery soon too to finish taking out the cancer or something like that. We offered to give her a blessing to which she happily responded. In the blessing, she was told that she would heal fully and there would be little pain. She was told about God's love for her and that if she continued to pray and come closer to God, she would have little pain and that her next surgery would go well too. She was crying at the end of it, as was her husband, John. John was born in the church but fell away after marrying her. Since then, his family has been non-stop praying for them to come back to the church and he said that this was an answer to their prayers. I felt like I was on cloud 9! The Spirit was so strong in that house. I love missionary work!!!

Saturday was transfer calls. Of course, we know that I am staying and so is Elder Gilson. So we spent a lot of time Saturday night talked with other missionaries about what is happened with them for transfers. My son, Elder Flake, is still training out in Silver City, NM. This is his second son which means that I have 2 grandsons! And my first grandson, Elder Cunningham, is training too which means that I am a great-grandfather at only 14 months old! 3 transfers ago, Elder Flake, Elder Cunningham and I all got together and had a 3 generation picture. This upcoming Monday though, for the half mission conference with Elder Malm, there will be Elder Hickenlooper (my dad), me, Elder Flake, Elder Cunningham, Elder Flakes new son, and Elder Cunninghams new son! We Will have a 5 Generation Picture!!! I know this isn't all that big for you guys but it is so fun out here to have a family since you guys are all so far away! Plus, we have Momma Despain who takes care of us out here. Saturday night she needed some help with her computer. I tried for an hour and a half but we can't get her administrative password for her windows 7 desktop computer to work. I tried like 10 different things but to no avail. I have one more idea but I can't try it till later this week when I have the right program downloaded onto my thumb-drive.

Sunday we went out to Bylas after Fort Thomas ward. We tried to visit a lot of people but no one was really home. That's when we remembered 2 referrals we had received earlier in the week. The first was named Niki Way. Niki's older brother just got baptized last week and she walked up to the missionaries in his ward and asked what she needed to do to get baptized too. She is 22 and has 2 kids: a 5 year old and a 2 year old. We went over and taught her the Restoration of the Gospel. Honestly, it was a very rocky lesson... Neither Elder Gilson nor I were working off of each other and we were jumping around everywhere and she had a lot of questions that should have been covered if we had worked together better. But she felt the Spirit and accepted a baptism date for the 20th of September! :) The other referral is named something Dwayne. I think Rachel or Samantha or Rebecka or something like that... :) Anyway, she was too busy right then so we will go back later this week and see her then! I guess missionaries had met with her in the past and she liked them coming over so we are going to get started with her this week!

Monday was kinda a slow day. We didn't have a dinner cause we usually don't have dinners on p-days which is usually on Mondays. So grandma Despain invited us over and we stayed over there for like 2 and a half hours talking and laughing and such. We made a cake for the Lansings (another part member family we are working with) and brought it over Monday night. They invited us in and we just talked and laughed and built up our friendship with them. All in all, Monday was kinda a laid back day but it's okay cause we killed it last week. :)

Yesterday was Elder Gilsons Birthday. He turned 19! Whoopee! We threw him a surprise party with cake and ice cream and then we played volleyball for like 45 minutes. But with it being transfers and there only being like 5 cars in all of the Gila Valley, we had to leave sports to go help out with people needed to go to the transfer sight and people needed to come back from the sight. That's why we were so busy yesterday. Also, we got 3 cakes from members for Elder Gilsons birthday. They are all sitting in our fridge and I have no idea what we are going to do with them! I love cake but not that much cake... :P

How is school going? Any problem kids yet? Gavin and Connor: You guys aren't beating up on anyone right? Good :) I love you all so much! Thank you for your emails and prayers! I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

~Elder Kyle Harris

Monday, August 11, 2014

August 11, 2014

Hello family! this week was a great one! I wrote down in my journal every night and planned on typing what I wrote so that I wouldn't forget anything. Well.... Guess who forgot their journal.... :/ But I still remember quite a bit! I will do my best to try to remember the details! But there was so much that happened this week that I don't think I will be able to remember everything. Sorry... :)

I love the new truck! I think that I will look great behind the wheel of it. ;) But the biggest thing that has been on my mind is this virus that's going around. I know that in Utah, we are safer because we are farther away but we need some sort of a plan just in case things go south. I want you to know, (And I have prayed harder for this not to happen than anything else I've ever prayed for) that if someone from the family gets sick, I want to come home. I couldn't handle being out here while someone I love is failing. I know this is a grim subject but I want to make sure that we are all on the same page just in case anything like this were to happen. I will continue to pray that this doesn't have to be an option but this is the option I want to take if it comes to choosing staying here or going home. What are your thoughts? I need to know what you think would be best for us as a family, not just for me.

Now off of that terrible subject, and onto my great week!

Tuesday was going to be a slow day. We didn't have a lot planned and the little that we did wasn't very time efficient. But we were trying very hard to come up with something productive to do and to set appointments but there was nothing coming to mind and no one was home. Well, our low tire pressure light in our truck was on again and I felt like we should check it out. We had to go buy a tire pressure gauge and realized the tire that we had fixed last week was still losing lots of air. So we took it in and explained the situation. They took a closer look at it and said that it was a good thing that we brought it in because there was a lot of wear they hadn't noticed before on both front tires and both needed to be replaced very badly. They showed where the wear was and sure enough, it was pretty bad and could have, supposedly, blown out if we hadn't replaced it. This was one of my first times realizing the stupor of thought when we were trying to plan and we couldn't think of anything. If we had appointments, we wouldn't have got our tire fixed!

After we got the tire fixed, we were trying to find someone to visit and Elder Gilson asked if we should go visit the Beals. Loa Beals is the one that you've talked to about my nick name being Sebastian, remember? :) Anyway, we made our way to their house and right as we got there, they were just about to leave and asked us to come with them (Loa looked really concerned so we didn't ask any questions). So we drove behind them to Taylor Freeze where we dropped off her daughter for work, then pulled into the Library's parking lot. She said that just about an hour earlier, her and her kids were swimming and Jacob, the second youngest, cut his foot on something and they were on their way to the doctors. Something you should know about the Beals is the only time their kids go to the hospital is for when they break a bone and when they were born. They firmly believe in being able to provide for themselves without having to go to the doctors. So this was obviously something bigger than just a little scrape. He showed us his right foot and on the inside of his foot, just below his ankle, he had a cut about 4 inches long. It was so deep that you could see the layer of fatty tissue (which is about 3 layers down) coming through the cut. She wanted him to have a blessing before they left. This was an answer to her prayers. As they were leaving their house, she really wanted him to have a blessing and that's when we showed up! It was an awesome miracle! Jacob had to get stitches and is on crutches but is recovering a lot faster than anticipated! Power of the Priesthood! :)

Thursday we were trying to plan out Giovani's baptism, which was this Saturday. We definitely procrastinated and the time we asked for to schedule the Building, 5 p.m., was already taken by another ward. So we had to do a lot of scurrying and rushing to make sure the Gibbons could do 4 instead, which they said they wouldn't have an answer till the next morning. The only problem was I was going on exchanges with our district leader and would be leaving the area. Elder Gilson told me that he would take care of everything, and he did! He got it set up and called a BUNCH of people from the ward to come too. The only bad thing was, Elder Gilson forgot to call the baptismal planners in the ward (mostly because he didn't know we had baptismal planners called in the ward). When we talked to them on Thursday, we told them 5 because we hadn't found out the building wasn't available until after we talked to them. Well, Elder Gilson didn't tell them it was changed to 4... So we show up on Saturday at the Stake Center at 3:15 and NO ONE IS THERE!! We don't have keys to the stake center to fill the font ourselves and the 3 people that have keys (that we know of at least) weren't answering their phones! We called each person about 15 times and no one answered... We drove to our bishop's house and to his counselors house but no one was home or they didn't have keys. So we were kinda freaking out when we saw it was 3:45 and we didn't have keys to let anyone into the building let alone fill the font. As we are drive around frantically, we see one of the stake presidency members walking out to their car. We drove up and explained our situation and he could obviously see that we were having a melt-down so he gave us his keys. He told us though that the font takes at least 45 minutes to fill.... We sped over to the church and started filling the font and right as we turned the water on, people started showing up. So here we are, freaking out that the font won't be ready till 4:30 and there is another scheduled baptism at 5 so we couldn't wait till then. By 4:05, we only had it about 1/3 of the way full and the room was packed... Our ward mission leader waited until 4:10 to start but 5 minutes wasn't going to make a whole lot of a difference. We decided to keep the water running until the talk was over then we'd go in and us as much water as was in the font to do the baptism. This is where Elder George and Elder Cunningham saved us. They basically took matters into their own hands and while the baptism was going, they were in the back, filling up mop buckets, and dumping them into the font! They filled up 8 buckets worth, which is about 80 gallons of water! Right as the speaker finished her talk, we stood up and turned the water off. When we opened the doors to the font, it was perfect! The water was the exact height and the perfect temperature. It was a miracle! The baptism was great and very spiritual. There was so much stress going into that baptism but peace filled the room as Giovani came up out of the water. It was absolutely amazing! Plus, we learned why not to procrastinate. :)

Also on Saturday, just before the baptism, we went out to Bylas to visit our investigators. We drove to Dean and Shawna's house first but they weren't home. As we were going to our next investigator, we thought we saw them drive past. So we said we'd go back after we visited Keith Pike. Keith wasn't home either so we went back to Dean's but they weren't home again. So we started driving to Shawnie's and again, we thought we saw Shawna drive past us. We said we'd go back after Shawnie. Well, Shawnie wasn't home so we drove back to Dean's and they still weren't home! So we started to go to Marina's and we waved at Shawna as she drove past, we said we'd go back after Marina's cause we were already in her driveway. But Marina had family over and couldn't meet with us. So we went back one last time to Dean and Shawna's house and still, no one was home... We didn't understand it! We saw them 3 times, we know we did! But no one was home. We saw across the street, a neighbor working on his car. We casually walked over and started up a conversation with this gentleman and offered our help. His name is Kirby. He declined but kept talking with us. Turns out, he is a less-active member who has been contemplating coming back to the church! "Coincidence, I THINK NOT!!!" (Quoted from 'The Incredibles'). After about 20 minutes, he asked us to go see his brother, Randall. Randall is also a less-active member and was just in a terrible car accident about 2 months ago. He, his wife, and his 3 kids were drive out of Bylas to head for Tucson for vacation. There was an 18 year old boy, texting and driving, coming in the opposite direction. This boy slowly merged to the right shoulder and hit the bumps to warn you that your drifting and over corrected. He hit Randalls truck head on with his own truck. Randall suffered a shattered hip, shattered knee, broken foot, broken ribs, and a broken collar bone. His wife and 3 kids passed away on impact.... Randall has since moved out of his home and in with this parents to help him recover from the surgeries he's had to go through. The ward had no idea where he moved to and no number to get ahold of him on. He received a blessing in the hospital but had wanted one for the mental anguish and pain he was suffering though. Because our appointments out in Bylas fell through, because we went back 4 times to Dean and Shawna's house, and because we talked with everyone around us, we were able to find Randall and give him the blessing that he needed. I don't know why bad things happen to good people, but I know that we as members of the church can be instruments in the Lord's hands to help those people we need love most. The Lord knows best and Randall realized that but he was still questioning "Why?". I don't remember one thing that was said in that blessing, but I do know that Randall received his answer.

The biggest lesson I've learned this week is never second guess whether a thought is coming from you or from the Holy Ghost. Even if you don't know why you need to go talk to this person or take that road to work even though it may take a little longer. There is no reason for any of us not to follow those promptings. I urge you guys, all of you, to covenant with your Father In Heaven to follow those promptings. Pray for the inspiration to know when those promptings come and use every opportunity to build your faith and your testimony.

I love you all so much. Thank you for your emails and your prayers. I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers. I love you.

~Elder Kyle Harris