Monday, December 29, 2014

The happiest person I know / getting ready for baptism

ahhhhhhh thanks for all the pictures it looks like you all had a really fun time, so did I. by the way I dont have a better tan i think  that you guys are casting judgement to soon. I was in a computer place that is not well lit, so it only appears that way. it sounds like you all enjoyed the season as i did as well, the usually things are good, i dont think i enjoyed them enough but i am enjoying my life now that is what is important. I think I waisted time trying to look forward to the future before loving the present, but not a big deal to most people, i am just saying this because i think its pretty hard to change unless you choose to. well i hopĂ© you all enjoy the wonderful marvioulous glorious season-  this was a good week we got to teach the lesson in church and that is one of the things I learned. The lesson was on,  basically work. I learned that our work is important because it is not just our work, we can work for something better than our own purposes and get better blessings. The happiest person I know works a lot I am sure, He created the earth. I have a testimony that we will be most happy as we serve the Lord. there is that one scripture that says -if you lose yourself you will find yourself- basically I know we will find ourselves as children of God if we keep the commandments, I have shared this but I love this scripture D&C 93:28 (He that keepeth his commandments receiveth truth and light , until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things.) it is cool because it tells just one of the blessings we can have if we keep the commandments. I know that Heavenly Father wants us to serve because He knows it will bring a good deal of happiness to a lot of people Moses 1:39
Love you see ya
Elder N. H. Seffker

not a lot of time for a long update today.Ya it was good to see y'all too! I Don't think I had much of a chance with the "tanness" contest with Nate. Haha, Maybe on P-day today we'll have to go to a tanning bed (just kidding). 
It was a good week. Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! 
We've been working a lot with Mike lately. He's doing good. He's getting ready for baptism. Well haha, I don't have a lot of time sorry. But I love y'all! 
love, Elder Russell

a few pictures...
one is a large lemon a member gave us a lot of
another one is a random thing I drew on a missionary's pillow case who was leaving (he wanted everyone to draw something
another is of me and some missionaries I came out with.

Monday, December 15, 2014

good Samaritan / have a "blessed day"

I like the quote that is a good Christmas quote, are you guys doing the "He is the Gift" thing? it seems really cool that the Church would try to tell everyone about the whole meaning of Christmas. I really love that video even though if I wasn´t a member it would seem a little interesting. You guys can watch it on your ipads as you drive around in your spaceships, I think it will be a little bit before we get ipads here. I know they are going to do some kind of change soon in the mission starting January, I have no idea what it could be.
     This week was another good week, I really feel like I am learning how to follow the Spirit better and I still have a lot to learn. 
This week was good, but regularly good, like every week. One thing I remember is we help a hobo guy yesterday, we were just walking and walked past a guy just laying on the sidewalk and I think we said hi but then my companion said we could get his reference and teach him later, many times these kind of people want to change, as we were talking to him we noticed his arm was bleeding and a little part of his foot seems to be missing, so my companion asked him if he needed help obviously he did, he had the look of that in his eyes- they were red, so we offered to call the police and stuff but we ended up getting him some water and brought him some food from our house. that was all yesterday and we saw him today on a park bench a couple benches away than the one yesterday so I guess he is making progress, the sad thing is the police and some of the people that walked by already know him as a drug addict of some sort and he drinks too so they don´t bother to much to help him. that is what is sad is if you want to help him like a good Samaritan you have to help heal his head not just his body., I thought that was cool that we could at least help him a little bit, we gave him our number so he could call us if he finds a phone i guess he doesn't really have a house either, i dont think he cares that much but he probably does want to change and he can if he has faith in Christ, we were talking with two other people like that after we gave a blessing to a sick guy the day before I think. we were just walking along and they called us over to share some of God´s word. They had faith to change, we invited them to church and they never came so we just need to follow up. We got to share some scriptures with them and explain that it is possible through Jesus Christ. one thing cool about that is they happened to be on the very edge of our area, I was really hoping they were in our area and I figured that out after the lesson. and this lady has a daughter that wants to be baptized that is 9, we will see how that goes. It is good to here what is happening up there. it is hard to imagine snow, I was thinking about that today as I grabbed something out of the freezer.
love ya, Elder Seffker
This week we had our ward Christmas party. It went really well. I love our ward. The members are awesome. I feel like I know the ward well now. Sometimes it's hard to get that feeling after being transferred. The members are so helpful though. 
We had a challenge given by our stake president a while ago to finish the Book of Mormon by Christmas and when I got transferred here in this area I had to make some goals so that would be able to happen. I love reading and learning in the little spare time we get as missionaries--I have a binder full of cool ensign articles by Hugh Nibley and a bunch of other good talks and excepts from manuals and I always read out of it. The other night I had a little time and I wanted to read an interesting article or something before we had to get ready for bed but I felt that I should read the Book of Mormon instead even though I had read the portion I needed to read for the day to hit my goal to finish by Christmas. I decided to read and read Ether 4. I felt after reading that there is such an amazing power in the Book of Mormon. Articles, talks, and manuals are great! but nothing can produce the effect that the Book of Mormon has when the Spirit is there. I love that Book. Ether 4 is an amazing chapter too! I hadn't realized that before. 
this week we've been working a lot with less-active members. I've felt over and over again that that's where we need to focus at this time in this ward. We've been trying to work with all the families that aren't coming but are close--many of which have family members who aren't members. We're helping a non-member husband of a lady in our ward with some Christmas decorations this Friday. He's really against the Church but he's a great guy and really nice. 
Well i'm outta time but ya'll have a "blessed day" (as Texans say).
love, Elder Russell

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

God has everything all worked out / learn to enjoy facing your challenges and trust in God

This week I'm emailing on Tuesday because we went to the temple this morning. I loved it. It's always great. We have had some great days this past week. I love being a missionary. I love everything about it. I was thinking about it the other day and the missionary schedule is so awesome! being able to study so much and have time to keep things organized and set and track goals. It might sound odd but I wish I could continue to have this kind of schedule ( i think I'll definitely keep a lot of parts of it). Anyway, on to the update for the week: We have this couple we've been teaching. They're a young newly wed couple and the girl is pregnant and they're having a rough time right now it seems. Their apartment when you walk in is completely empty. We wanted to help them out and the other day we were riding our bikes down the road and stopped to talk to a guy who was in his driveway. He started, "I don't need Jehovah's Witnesses." we told him we were missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints and he said, "I don't need help from Mormons." We started talking to him more and found out he had rented out the house he was in front of and the tenants left some of their furniture in it and he said things were going really rough in life for him right now and nothing was working out. He said the problem was that he didn't know how he would get rid of the furniture. He wanted to throw it away. We told him we could help him out. We called up President Monson and he helped us out and drove a truck over on saturday to load up the furniture. (by the way, President Monson is our Elder's quorum president). We gave the furniture to Maria (the girl whose apartment was empty). It's awesome how God has everything all worked out. We had a great lesson the other night with a guy named Mike. We have this awesome member (Brother Allison) who came with us. He is such a good missionary! He fellowships investigators really well too. Mike accepted to be baptized and I think he will get baptized. He has good intent. He's a great guy. On Sunday we had dinner at the Allison's house and invited an investigator named Abla and a less-active named Nathan. It was great. After dinner we watched the Christmas Devotional on tv. That was a great Devotional. 
Well, I hope y'all have a good week! Don't forget to read, pray, and be your best.
 I love y'all,
Elder Russell

Today is kind of an interesting day, lots of people go to this place to adore the virgin Mary, i think they think she appeared in that city
Yeah the language is coming along good, my new companion is from columbia, for some reason when I translate what he is saying in my head, sometimes it sounds like he is British, he is pretty cool. I am still in the same area as I was with my last companion. it seems like it was a while ago when I changed companions it really was like 5 days ago. I am learning probably at a faster rate now than I ever had at home, at least in weeks of time, the Lord has really blessed me. I am not just learning Spanish, as you have said living the gospel seems to sharpen all of your abilities. one thing I liked about my last companion is he seemed to visit people because he loved them not so he could write another tally mark, I remember visiting a few people with him that we just visited because they were old or crazy or something, not so we could get higher numbers. I thought I would be more scared or stressed if I ended up getting left here with someone new because I would have to remember things about the area and people. but the time came and I felt more ready, it is interesting how that happens because sometimes a while back I would have the same feeling unless me having the responsibility wouldn´t fall through, I remember before the change I just felt calm kind of cool because I was talking about grace in my prayer the night before, that really is a blessing to feel calm like that. To live a happy and peaceful life here on earth your not going to be able to just avoid every problem you are going to have to learn to enjoy facing your challenges and trust in God. I feel that over this past while I have become just a little bit more brave or faithful, better at not believing in the lie of fear and all that. One thing I like about my companion now is that he likes to obey an important rule in missionary work, a rule that some missionaries who are known to obey the rules seem to skip out on sometimes, the rule to enjoy the rules. the rules are the blessings but we cant enjoy them if we dont look around, if we dont try to have a good atitude it is like we didnt do anything, I think there is a scripture about that somewhere. 
Love you
Elder Seffker

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The weather today is really good, it sort of looks like it is about to rain and has some wind. My companion speaks english as good as me  and is from Orem, Ut.  another cool thing that has happened this week is that I have started to think some words in Spanish naturally, and my english is changing very slightly
  yeah our culture is actually pretty different it is funny because my comp talks fluent spanish too, his family is from mexico so he has sort of two cultures it seems like.

This week was a good one we did this thing they called ´´casa abierta´´ it is just our chapel´s official name i guess but anyway it was pretty cool, we got to give people somewhat of a tour through the church and then ask them for some references. We didnt have too many people come but I still thought it was fun, this week we did that and mostly the regular stuff, finding people. After the casa abierta thing this lady dropped a cane on the members needing to do more missionary work, me and my companion thought it was alright though it is true, if every one were like mom the church´s attendance would explode but the thing I guess i am saying is just take the little opportunities to do missionary work and you will find it is not so hard or even scary.  Love ya Elder Seffker
We finally got a picture of Elder Seffker and the missionary in front of him has his arm in his face.. Oh well, the rest of him looks good! Ha Ha 

A frog from Paraguay!!

This week was great. We had a good thanksgiving. We started it out by playing some football at a park with some guys from the ward. We were going to play soccer and I was way excited too--especially because our friend richard from nigeria (who played professional soccer div. 1 in Nigeria) was going to play with us.. but no one brought a soccer ball. But it was still fun. It's pretty embarrassing but I was a little bit sore from it the last few days. Anyway, then we ate with the slack's. They're an awesome family. It was fun to be over there. Sister slack is amazing at the organ. She plays it really well in church. She's really good. She even knows the Mormon tabernacle organists and stuff. 
We had a good lesson with a guy named Diego this week. He had some good questions when we met with them and I feel like they were efficiently answered (sometimes I don't feel like that happens haha). I love the scriptures. We also met with this guy named Jesse. He's really old. We met with him the first time and went over to meet with him yesterday and he was out racking leaves. He's 87 so it was surprising to see what he had done. He was over by his neighbors yard doing it. He's a really good guy. We helped him out. Later we had a lesson with him. He's kind of interesting. He says he gets letters from aliens and he mostly reads from the Urantia instead of the Bible and hasn't opened up the Book of Mormon yet (the Urantia is a book that I guess would best be classified as psuedopigrypha--kind of an interesting sounding book). But he's a good guy. Pray for him. Well sorry I gotta go. Love y'all. Check out It's a new thing the church is doing. 
love, elder russell