Monday, October 26, 2015

Happy Halloween!!

New Investigator!

Boo Berry Love!!
Hey everyone! How has the week been? Everything here in Sumterville has been pretty good this week. We were able to see of those new "gators" I talked about, and found another! She is super awesome! She apparently met some missionaries back in the 80's. But with her moves, she lost the Book of Mormon she had! She believes it is true already, so we will see how that goes!!

Overall, it was a pretty hard week for door knocking. We knocked SO many doors, but sadly no one was ever. So we were not able to get in contact with most of them. And the few we met, basically ran us off of their property haha!! BUT on the bright side...HALLOWEEN IS THIS WEEK! I just love Halloween! We found some SWEET homes decorated in the villages and so I'll attach a picture of one. Also, this Halloween I'm most likely going to dress as a missionary, or maybe a Ninja Turtle..haven't decided quite yet!! haha. AND Halloween also means the best cereal is out! BooBerry! I had to get some.

We somewhat set a baptismal date with the twins this week. We talked about baptism with them, but we will have to wait for the head of households approval for them. They are super excited, so I hope that comes soon for them!

My physical therapy went well! I had my reevaluation, and the therapist said she could notice physical improvements in my movement! So I updated President Berry, and he said he was going to talk with the mission nurse and get me set up with the missionary department to get me three more weeks of physical therapy. So we will see how that ends up.

I have only a quick scripture and quote today sadly... This is Mosiah 4:6, talking about how we can CONTINUE to apply the atonement in our lives. " I say unto you, if ye have come to a knowledge of the goodness of God, and his matchless power, and his wisdom, and his patience, and his long-suffering towards the children of men; and also, the Atonement which has been prepared from the foundation of the world, that thereby salvation might come to him that should put his trust in the Lord, and should be diligent in keeping his commandments, and continue in the faith even unto the end..." "If we are going to receive everything that the father hath, it's not going to happen without giving all that we have in return."

Anyway, thanks for everything everyone. I hope you all have an amazing week ahead of you! Thank you for all of the prayers. I'm always praying for you guys. Have a great Halloween!

-Elder A. Olson 

District P-Day Pumpkin Carving!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Twas a Week of Finding!

Working on shoe art!

Hey everyone, how have you all been? Things have been going pretty well here, and the area has definitely been progressing! This week was quite different than most that we have in Sumterville, mainly because it was all based around finding.. Which was pretty exciting. It was quite successful too!! Basically, we just went through our lists of Former Investigators/Potentials and went visiting those people again. We got to meet some pretty awesome people that way, we knocked some doors, and visited a few Media Referrals! Overall, we ended up finding 5 new investigators to start teaching!!

We found one investigator-Manya, who is way awesome!! She recently went to Utah and while there, she visited the church museum. She really enjoyed it and it sparked some questions inside her!! So we will see where that takes us!
We got to meet with the Twins this week, luckily, health didn't get in the way too much! We had a good lesson with them talking about baptism and they are both just the most excited kids in the world to be baptized! We were able to set a rough date for them as of right now. So we hope and pray they will able to be baptized November 7th or possibly the 14th. We are super pumped for them! I'm glad they have come to realize why we need baptism and truly how important the role of the Holy Ghost is in our lives!

This week I did (for the most part) finish my physical therapy sessions. I do have a physical re-evaluation with them this week to see if there were any improvements. I do feel a little better. I mean, obviously it wasn't going to get solved that quick, but I can tell a slight difference! The pain is still there, is just isn't as persistent as it once was I guess! So we will see what they feel about it. Thanks everyone for the prayers and for caring about it! It's been awesome to have the support group I have!

For this week's thought I strayed away from the General Conference talks for now, only because I found an AMAZING quote given by Dieter F. Uchtdorf and Rosemary M. Wixom... " President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said, “God sent you here to prepare for a future greater than anything you can imagine. That future, a day at a time, comes alive when you do more than just exist; it comes alive when you live your life to fill the measure of your creation. This invites the Lord into your life, and you begin to let His will become yours."

We need to do more than just 'exist' right now. We need God's ways to become ours. We need to try and live up to our divine potential. We need to do our best to show our Heavenly Father that we care and desire to be our personal best and act on our faith.

Thank you! I do love and miss you all! I hope you all have a safe, and overall great week ahead of you! You truly are the best. And I hope you know of my love and prayers towards you all!

-Elder A. Olson

Monday, October 12, 2015

Powda Blue Suit!!

Sporting my Powda Blue Suit!!

Hey everyone! I Hope you all had another awesome week! Ours was pretty interesting, but a very good one at that and we are still on this awesome spiritual high from General Conference. The week started out with transfers on Tuesday and yes, Elder Uber and Cooper both left to go home! I hate to see them go, but they have served well and are great examples to the missionaries who remain in the field! Elder Cooper was my trainer so it was kind of weird to see him go! He gave me an awesome gift though.. I'll definitely attach pictures. Let's just say it's like a super retro "Powda' Blue Suit". Totally awesome!!

With Elder Cooper (My Trainer)
Then sadly, we weren't able to set a date with the Twins this week. I ended up getting sick Wednesday so we couldn't meet with them. Then their grandma got sick on Friday for our next appointment. All we know thus far is that it will be sometime in November! WOOHOO! 

Also, speaking of baptisms, I found out that Jessica, who I helped teach back in Ocoee, was able to get baptized! YAY!! I was super happy to hear the news, but sad I wasn't able to attend. Also, another surprise is that my old MTC companion has returned to this mission! Maybe I'll see him around!

I started my Physical Therapy this week as well. I only had three visits this week and sadly, not much has changed yet. I have noticed it doesn't hurt all day, but the pain still comes when I sit too long for lessons, drive anywhere, or stand or walk too much. So we will see how this next 3 visits this week end up. Thanks for all of your prayers, fasting and thoughts. I'm very grateful for you all and the constant support I get!! You are my heroes!!!

Nothing else exciting really happened.. We got a new mission car to drive around. That's pretty cool! But other than that I'm still just pushing along and trying to do my best!!

For this weeks General Conference thought, I've been thinking a lot about Neil L. Anderson's talk titled " Faith is Not by Chance, it's by Choice" Seriously this talk was amazing! He talks about how faith isn't a birthright. It's something that is to be picked up along the way, and hopefully confirmed to us that it's true! Faith, like the title says, isn't something placed upon us so we abide by it. It's something that we have to choose to live, choose to want in our lives, and choose to continue in. Because, like Elder Anderson says, faith is either growing or diminishing. How we live our lives increases or diminishes our faith. Prayer, obedience, honesty,purity of thought and deed, and unselfishness increase faith. Without these, faith diminishes.

Overall, the most important question to ask ourselves is "How does the Lord see MY Faith?" I hope that we all are increasing in our faith in our Savior Jesus Christ, and His Atonement. Because I know that this is how we truly grow closer to Him and our Heavenly Father. And to close this out, I will share an amazing quote from that talk. "I don't know everything, but I do know enough to continue on the path of true discipleship."

Thanks for all you guys do for me, I love and miss you all. And hope you have an amazing week ahead of you!

-Elder A. Olson 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Mini Exchange, Baptisms and Conference!!

Conference Breakfast with the Elders!

Hey everyone! How was your week this past week?! We made it through another week here in Sumterville and had a pretty awesome week! It started out pretty average, with the same meetings and stuff like that.  I also scheduled my first physical therapy session, which begins this Wednesday, because sadly they didn't have any openings until then. So I will be doing that and some more assessments!! Then this past Friday, Elder Uber and Elder Cooper got to drive down and do a final Temple Session. (Uber goes home this week) so Elder Thompson, Ashworth, and I got to spend most of the day in their area, Eustis, which is super close to Deland. It was so cool seeing familiar terrain and surroundings! We got the opportunity to go and teach some of their investigators, and see the people they visit. It was definitely a good learning experience/mini day exchange!

Also, we got permission from President Berry to set a baptismal date with the twins this week, so we will be doing that! They are hoping that we can do it mid-November, so that is what we are shooting for!! 
With us being in a branch that rents a little building, they were unable to broadcast General Conference to it. So we got permission to spend that time with the Lecanto Elders watching General Conference and boy oh boy was it awesome! I truly think I learned more from this last general conference than ever before! Those messages were exactly what I needed, and I was grateful that I had questions answered! Those men and women truly are called of God and inspired to lead, guide, and share what they did! And that's why I believe Elder David A. Bednars' talk was one of the absolute best with him expressing where we would be without our leaders and that they are truly called servants of God.  Many of you mention that you saw our frail prophet standing at the pulpit, as weak as possible, but still caring enough, loving enough to continue the message he knew we, as children of God, needed to hear. I love that man! The years of service and the love he has offered us has been priceless! The feelings you receive as you listen to the General Authorities is amazing, and the spirit that radiates from them is undeniable. This truly completes the scripture in Moroni 7:12 "Wherefore, all things which are good cometh from God.." 

There were so many good talks given though and it really did change a lot within me. And so over he next few weeks I'm going to highlight some of these talks in my email and explain why I like them. If that's alright?! So since I've already talked about Elder Bednar's talk, here's what I took from the beginning of his talk... "When you can not do what you've always done, then you only do what can be done. You will not always be eased from limitations or physical restrictions, you will be blessed with strength to continue on, and press forward."

Thanks for all the prayers, and thoughts, and support. I truly do appreciate and love you all. I hope you have an amazing week ahead of you, and you enjoyed  General Conference! Thanks again!!

- Elder A. Olson