Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas is Coming

I love that chapter [Alma 14I use it a lot when people want to know whey there is suffering in the world. When ever I teach that I cry. I feel there pain and I want to do the same for people here just take away all there pains. Then think about all the people that God has to let them feel the pain. How much he loves all of us and all the pain that he has went though because of other peoples choices. 

This week was cool we baptized a kid form Korea his name is Dohyung Kim (AKA Jade). It was really cool. His friend baptized him. Very spiritual moment. We also confirmed him the next day and a Korean said the confirmation. The confirmation was in Korean so no one understood it.  I could still feel the spirit. We then taught a class of 12 and 13 year old in church about how to be more efficient in missionary work. I keep thinking of Robert. Jade the kid that was baptized was also 13 years old so he was Robert's age when he was baptized. I think that is cool. Happy birthday Robert you are now 14 years old and have more responsibility. Do you know what all of it includes? Ask Ben to show you in the Doctrine and Covenants. He is very knowledgeable in the scriptures. 

Christmas has been changed a little. I will get about 1 hour to Skype home. and I will not be able to visit people in our mission anymore. :( Our mission president said not to visit people outside of our area. 

Elder Kolpakov will be going home in 2 days. That is crazy to me. Also this week is transfers so me and Elder Mansfield might not be together. That would be bad. He is such a good companion and we are really getting the work moving in this stake. I don't want things to be switched up, but that is how missionary work goes sometimes. I already have a family that we are going to Skype at soon we have to figure out a time that we can do that.

Well this week has been great. 
Elder Walker

Monday, December 9, 2013

Facing the Lord

It is really cold here. About 9 degrees in the morning and in the day it gets up to about 15 degrees. Very warm. Haha. I love it anyways. It helps people feel compassion for us so it is more likely that we will be able to go into people's homes and teach a message. It also causes people to be home more so we are not knocking on so many empty doors. That is nice.

This past week has been an interesting week. We had talked to lots of return missionaries that are less active and it makes me sad to see that. There was one person who was an AP on his mission and he went less active and has a difficult time believing in God. He still reads the Book of Mormon and watches conference and lets his wife and kids go to church, but he is struggling so much. It is sad to see that backwards progression. There have been lots of those people here. We have apartments in our area. It is different than most of my other areas. We get to see families that have strange relationships (gays lesbians). We try to get in and teach them and most of them used to be active members and they just went astray. It is different. They now want nothing to do with the Church.

We have an investigator from Korea and he is an exchange student and wants to be baptized. He will be baptized this week. I am really excited for that to happen. He is having another foster kid who is 16 do the baptism. That will be a neat experience. I am excited. We are doing well in this area. I learned a lot from our mission president this past week. We had a mission leadership training meeting and it was very inspirational. I loved it.  There are huge changes happening in our mission. He is changing a lot of the things of our last mission president. Our mission was a little unique because we were so close together we could do workouts together in the morning. Now that is gone. We also used to have district lunch about 2 times a week and that is gone as well. He just went through the whole mission and changed everything. Lots of missionaries are mad at him for the changes. I think it was necessary to make those changes. He told us a principle:
Are you facing the lord?
Now I am going to try to explain this, but it will be hard.
If I were to line people up each facing one direction (so you were looking at the back of a person's head) the first person is Christ. The next is the prophet then the mission president then zone leader then district leader and finally the missionary. (The missionary is not facing anyone). Do you see the picture? 
So now if I were to turn the zone leader and face the mission president. That would symbolize him back talking the mission president or not taking his advice. 
Now a huge problem arose. We have a leader who does not like what the mission president said. It causes so much contention in the rest of the line. Do you now see who we have to face? Not the Lord, but those we have stewardship over and the ones that the Lord is facing. We need to go in his direction and not the opposite way. 
I hope this all made sense. I wish I could draw a picture. 
Now what we all need to do is to follow our leaders, even if we do not understand. Our mission president said that he even does not understand why he is doing this. He said it was Revelation from the Lord! That is cool to be able to see inspiration happen in our mission. Now my job is to support him the best I can and I need to support the Lord's decision on everything.

Rumor in our mission is that we will all get iPads at the beginning of the new year! I hope it is true. 
Cool thing that also happened. So Dad, you said that I might cover the prison in my mission. It is in my district and I ate lunch at the Serving Time Cafe (a restaurant on the prison ground and run by inmates). A doctor that works there payed for us and said that anytime we go in we say his name and they will put it on his tab. He said to do it as much as possible to show the inmates that work there an example. That was cool. He was a very nice guy and the food there is about $8 for both our our costs combined. I love that place. No we will not abuse it Mom we will be respectful of him and his kindness. It was still really cool. 

I love my mission. It is a wonderful time to be a missionary. We have so many resources that we get to use. I love my mission. I could do this the rest of my life. The joys are so great and the spirit is so strong. This is the most righteous I have ever been in my whole life and I love it! I still have lots to work on, but I know that will the Lords help I can over come all! and I mean all!

I love you family. Have a happy Christmas! 
Robert keep being the kind kid I know you as even as you grow up 
Monica keep these great times in your life a memory.
Ben keep doing a great job at inspiring many people.
Alex and Bj I love your example for us. I remember when I was studying in your house. Alex and you were reading the scriptures and how much you loved them. Keep it up
Mom I love your letters and the example of a great Mom and the willingness to follow Christ in the responsibility he places on your shoulders. (example when your shoulder was frozen and did not move that did not stop you from going to the temple and from cooking us dinner and every day things [Ed. note: or directing the choir]. I was thinking about that in the temple a little bit ago and I felt your pain) you are a great Mom even when you need help to get dishes off the top of the shelf.
Dad I think of you often. Last night me and Elder Mansfield were talking about scouting and the love that both of us had in going on trips with our fathers. I see so many people that do not have fathers or fathers that don't do any thing with them. I am so lucky to have you as my father.

Thanks family for being so strong in the faith. It helps me a lot. I see many families that have one person that does not go to church or does not believe in Christ or many other things. I am grateful that I was born in this world with this family and this life. I can't thank you guys enough. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Beginning of the Christmas Season

I am doing really good. This week we were tracking and knocked on this door and a guy answered it. He was from Alabama. He had lived in Utah for 5 years and had never talked to missionaries. We went in and taught a lesson. It went really well. He loved the Book of Mormon. He said  "I have always wanted one!" He told us to give him time to read it. We are going back tomorrow. That was cool. I do not get very many teaching opportunities to teach from cold door tracking. We had been working so hard this week and we were blessed. The total amount of doors we probably knocked on to find that one guy is 200+ doors! We are teaching many people and doing great work. Things are looking up here. I love it!

My companion is legit. He is a powerful teacher and really diligent in the work. It makes things so good when your companion works hard with you. I see some missionaries really wanting to work, but have a hard time because their companion doesn't want to do anything. I have been blessed in all my companions that I have had. They are wonderful. 

I remember when Russell came back and I did companion study with him and Ryan. [Editor's Note: Russell Fischer left for his mission the same time as Ben. He came home for about a month so he could have surgery. During that time, he took Joshua and Ryan Burnham and helped them further prepare for their missions.  It was a great experience for all of them.]  That feels like so long ago. Time is strange on a mission. Things out side it seem so far away, but everything on it seems to go so fast . 

We have a nativity in our Stake. it is kinda like the one in California. About 15000 people come to it. It is a great opportunity to have people invite their neighbors to something that will help them come closer to Christ, especially near Christmas. It is cool. I will be there a lot this next few days just talking to people.

Elder Walker

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

'We Sometimes Need to Show a Little Faith'

We had an amazing week. As you know I was whitewashed into this area. (Don't know why but I think it had to do with the last missionaries). It is really hard to be white washed in because you know no one and no one knows you. So the first week we taught no one. The next week we taught 1 person and now we have 5 people on date to be baptized in December! This week has been a huge blessing week. We are teaching so many. My area is projecting 1/2 of our zone. It is truly a blessing from God that we are able to find and teach so many. One of the kids' names is Jade. We had a lesson with him about 1 hour ago. He is going to be baptized on December 14. He is Korean and speaks a little English. We watched the Restoration video in Korean. I could almost quote it in English because of how many times I saw it. That was a cool experience to have. I can't wait until he is baptized. I still get to teach people that are not from America here. I think God sends people here to Utah so that they can hear the gospel and take it back to where they came from. 

We are also teaching a person named Ben. We took him to Temple Square on Saturday and he loved it. It is fun because we get taught as well because the sister missionaries lead out in the discussion. I love that opportunity that we get to go down there. We have so many experiences that happen each and every day that just testifies of Christ and of God's love for everyone. Especially on the hard days.

I am learning so much more then I thought I would on my mission. One of the best things that I am grateful for the talent that I have developed is the ability to make friends. It is so much easier for me to go up to someone and introduce myself and make friends. I also believe it is easier to do that in Utah when you have a name tag on (maybe I will make a name tag and where it around after my mission 'Hello my name is Walker') lol, it is also a lot easier to make enemies, but they are not mad at me but the church. That is another blessing I have God's protection and help even from mean people. I don't feel the least degree of anger towards them any more. I am just sad that they have such a hard heart. There are very few mean people here in Utah so that is good. 

A good story to go along with your faith proceeds confirmation from God. 
It is in the Old Testament about the ark of the covenant. They had to take it across a river and the water was too deep. God told them that they had to get their feet wet and walk in there with the Ark of the Covenant before he would stop the water. (Joshua 3). So they had to show faith then God would do his thing. He will always help us if we show a little faith. Same thing happened to Nephi when he had to go in the city to get the plates. He had tired everything he could but he had to show more faith and God helped him by providing the way. 
Relating it to us we sometimes need to show a little faith by trusting in our feelings and getting baptized even if you might not happen for you the same as everyone else. 

Remind me sometime to relate the Butterfly Circus movie to this. We watched it at zone conference with our mission president.

Monday, November 18, 2013

One of the Most Eventful Weeks

So much has happened this week. It was probably one of the most eventful week of my whole mission. Crazy right? A lot of it I will not talk about because it involves other people, but something that did happen is I got news from my former companion that a excommunicated person that I was teaching and loved very much in my last area just died. (I was at his funeral this morning that is why I am emailing so late.) That was really sad. Question that I have been pondering and one I can't find. What happens to those who die and who are excommunicated? I heard that you can't do baptisms for the dead for them so what happens? 

I can't believe that Sean is back! Every one that left for their mission before me is almost back. That is strange to think about. 

I have had so many meetings my last week I have been to a total of 27 hours of them this week including church. Crazy right? Every day of the week I have had something. I like meetings a lot more then I did before my mission. I think it is because I know that I can learn so much more and I realize how much I do not know. 

We found a new investigator this week. That was fun. His wife is a recent convert to the church with a really strong testimony of the gospel and every lesson she cries and tells him how much she wants him to be baptized and then sealed in the temple. He is on date to be baptized on December 7 and he is working really hard to get there. 

We are finally finding work in this stake. It is difficult to get work started in a stake when missionaries have both got pulled out of the area. We had to start from scratch. I believe that the rewards are greater when you have greater struggles. That is why I am thankful for my mission. I have grown so much and am growing so much more then I ever have. (and no Mom I am not taller than Ben) unless Ben shrunk. Haha. I love my mission.

Two more things I need for my mission. First I would love a shoulder bag. All the missions have been required to get one instead of backpacks. My companion got one that has a wast strap so when you are riding a bike it does not go in front of you. I would love one like that. I need the shoulder bag no later than the new year. 

Also tell Robert that Elder Kolpakov bought me a present and it was a chess game. I have played it once. I won, but it was close. That is our p-day game. 

I would love to be in a class with Ben and Sean teaching it. That would be so cool. 

Have I told you all the service opportunities I have had? I have fixed a tiller, made a fence, put in sod for many people, I have put in dry wall and have done mudding for them as well, mowed hundreds of lawns and hundreds more of leaves raked up. OK probably not a hundred, but too much to count, I have put in insulation for a house (fiberglass), fixed someone's electricity in their house, have dug lots of holes for miscellaneous things. I have put stucco on a house, painted a whole garage (that one hurt my neck because I did the ceiling). Fixed a sprinkler system. (kinda put in a new one actually) I have tried to fix a printer and a weed wacker unsuccessfully, but worked hard on it. Have fixed a table and made it look really nice. The holes where the screws were stripped so it would not stand and there were missing pieces. We made new holes and made it look way nicer then it had been. I have picked up apples and also peaches (sound familiar) from the ground. I love those opportunities to do this. I have learned so much from all of it. I was able to do a lot of it because of Dad and the things we did together like putting up the light above the fireplace or fixing the sprinkler system. There were more then one baptism that came because of these things that we did. 

Love Elder Walker. Have a great week everyone!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Temple Visit

This week was interesting. We had a week filled with appointments but the people do not always keep appointments. We have a whole bunch of investigators it is just hard to meet with them because of things going on in their life. It is nice to know that we we have people to teach.

We got to go the the temple. That was a lot of fun. I don't think that I have ever been at the temple at night before. It was cool to see the lights of the temple and be able to go at night. We had about half of our mission in the celestial room at one time. And the celestial room is not that big. That was also fun. 

We have transfers this week again. I have been with Elder Kolpakov for about 6 months. That is four times as long as I have had any of my other companions. We hope that we will stay together next transfer as well. my companion is going home on December 17 so this will be his last transfer. He is going to get married almost as soon as he gets home. 

I cant think of what really happened this week. I normally remember because I write in my journal at least 2 times a week but I did not get the chance this week so I don't remember what happened. We are baptizing a boy named Ayden this week. That will be fun. We also picked up 2 new investigators that are Russian. It is interesting the mom has married an active member from here. She moved and is now going to church with her son for 1 year. She wants to be baptized, but lies to us about coffee her husband said that she is badly addicted to it. She lied to Elder Kolpakov that and said that she was willing to be baptized and did not drink any coffee. They were speaking in Russian so I did not understand neither did the husband because she was speaking Russian and he does not speak Russian. It is a little strange situation that we are working on.

It snowed yesterday in the valley. We had to ride our bikes thought it. That was fun. For some reason my hands get really cold so when I shake people hands it kinda startles them.  

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Interesting Times

This week was really interesting. We were supposed to have 4 baptisms but on the day of their interviews they freaked out because the zone leader told them that their uncle could not baptize them because he was not worthy (I still have not really met the family). Read last weeks email and I explained it a little better. All of the kids want to be baptized but the mom will not let them now. We went by the next day with the Spanish missionaries that were doing the teaching. She told us that she was going to call the cops on us if we did not leave. It is sad to see the family suffer because of this incident. I am pretty sure that the family will eventually get baptized. This was the most interesting thing that happened this week. A 12 year old girl will be baptized this up coming week. Her name is Nevada. She had met with the missionaries for a long time. She goes off and on for this long. Now she is finally ready for her baptism. That is exciting. 

Ben will be a great help for you in your lesson preparations for seminary. I would use him as much as possible. It will help him to keep studying the scriptures in order to help other people and not just himself. I found out that a lot of returned missionaries will read for about 3 months then it goes away. I believe that is because they are used to doing it for the benefit for others and not themselves. It is almost like why it is easy to help your neighbor fix their sprinklers but not your own. If that makes sense.

Also tell Ben to write me. I love his letters that he sent on his mission. I think that FHE tonight will be a good one.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Conference Weekend

First no I was not transferred neither was my companion Elder Kolpakov. 

I loved conference as well. I also noticed lots of references to prayer in Conference. I thought that it was really good. I can now officially say that I have been to President Monson's favorite session of Conference. (Sunday morning) I went to 2 sessions in the Conference Center. One was Saturday afternoon and the other was Sunday morning. That is such a blessing to be able to actually see the prophet and the apostles in person. 

I have also heard about the government shutting down. If you listened to the conference they talked a lot about enduring to the end and that if we have faith in Christ that we will be able to overcome all challenges. President Monson said this along with other general authorities.  I believe that hard times are going to hit us hard this next 6 months. I also think that is why President Monson talked a lot about home teaching in Priesthood Session.

We had a good week. We found 4 new investigators. That was cool. The stake that we are in loves us so much. We get compliments from so many people in this stake. The missionaries that were in this stake before us did not do much work, so when missionaries do come in that want to work, it gets going fast. I really like the area we are in. There are always so many things we can do as missionaries. 
It is also really cool to see your recent converts continue to come to church and prepare to receive the Aaronic priesthood. I love that as well. I am excited for you Ben. I know that you will be able to see such changes in  your daily life outside of a mission. 

I think that you will be able to help Robert grow in ways that he did not think he could grow. As well as others around us. By the way I want you to record Ben when he comes home and when he teaches lessons to our family so I will be able to watch them in the future. I think that would be really cool to be able to see that later. 

Somebody gave me a harmonica because they want me to be able to play a duet with Elder Kolpakov when he plays a song on his accordion. It is harder to play then it looks, but I am learning. 
I love you all and I love the things that I am doing here. 
Elder Walker

Pray always.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


I will be at General Conference this week Saturday night -- not the Priesthood Session. So look for me. I will be in the back because those are the only tickets that we were able to get.  :)

We baptized a boy named Quincy this last Saturday. He was one of the smartest 9 year old boys that I know.  We gave him a Book of Mormon Story book to read and he finished it within 4 days. Then we gave him the Old Testament Story book and he finished that as well really fast. Finally we told him to just read the Book of Mormon and he is now in 2 Nephi and when we asked his favorite part he told us, "I like the part when he gets tied up on the boat and his brothers are being really mean to him, but then God loved Nephi so he caused the bothers to let him go." I love that kid. His Mom is not returning back to church and his whole family came up here for the baptism. They are not all members including her husband. We also taught the Restoration while they were changing after the baptism. (Ben is that something that you were asked to do by your mission president? Because that is what our mission president told us to do). Something that made it really good was my companion played the piano while I was giving the first vision. It was really good and you could feel the Holy Ghost really strong there.

There is already snow!
I was also asked to give the talk on the Holy Ghost at the baptism and I also had about 2 min to think about what I was going to say. I believe that I did a really good job. I had lots of people say that I did a good job.  I like it when time does not matter and you just move as the Spirit directs. (That is one of the reasons that my role plays and or talks in sacrament meeting don't feel genuine because I am always rushed for time or feel like I have to fill the whole time.)

Robert I agree that lots of the questions that are asked in the church can be answered with "The Atonement." I remember when I was your age we had what we called SMA or Standard Mormon Answers. You could answer any question with the same answer, but that led me down the path that I thought I knew most everything. So just remember that there is so much more you can learn, even from the lesson that they teach over and over and you feel like you have the lesson memorized. There is still more you can learn.

Also, yesterday was the 5th Sunday and I went to the combined class at the end of church. One of our bishops taught. He talked about video games. He went through some video games and was very blunt about what they do in the video game. For example, Grand Theft Auto: he said that this is one of the most common games in the world. This game is a really bad game. He said that first off you are the criminal and never the good guy. You go around killing people, cops, and stealing things. The more cops you kill, the more destruction you make, and the more people you steal from, the more money you make. And what you do with the money is worse. You go and sleep with a prostitute and then you have the option to kill her and get your money back. And it goes on. 

Now this was not the worst game he mentioned but is is one of the most popular games and it is only rated M for mature.  There is only one higher and that is only because they add in gambling games. The bishop told this to all of the adults to warn them that the world is changing. They are in games that any kid can go to the store and buy. There are horrible things that are out there in members homes and corrupting people and people lose the Holy Ghost when they play these games. Read Deuteronomy 11:26-28: things are given for a reason, but Satan changes those things and makes it bad. 
Read D&C 59:6: don't kill.
Last scripture Articles of Faith 1:13: If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report, or praiseworthy we seek after those things. 
I just wanted you to know this as well parents.

A U of U fan we put a BYU flag on it. Our ward mission leader.
I am eternally grateful to my family for the things that you have done for me and the things that I have been taught by all of you.
Proverbs 3:5:Lord with all thine heart: and lean not unto thine own understanding. 

Trust in the
Believe this scripture and live it.

Love Elder Walker

Monday, September 23, 2013

Being A Missionary

I keep forgetting to take a picture. Sorry I don't wear my suit other than meetings any more or else I would just take it right now and send it.

Mom, an idea came to me while you were talking about the Lungs. You should ask them if they want to receive our letters to you in email. I don't mind who reads mine and I think that they would benefit from them. Dad told me that his secretary reads them and enjoys them very much (or I think Dad told me that).

Being here in Utah I see a lot of people coming to Church because of missionary farewells or homecomings that would never normally go to Church. If Ben does not mind I think that you should invite everyone you know to come to Church with you. We do that when we have talks in a ward. We run around telling everyone in the ward that we are giving talks and surprisingly, a lot show up to listen to us. So I think that everyone in our family should invite the people that they home teach and visit teach to go to Church, and Robert you should invite your friends to church and tell them that your older brother will be coming home from a mission and he will be talking and that you want them to come with you. That goes for you too Monica :)
I believe that it is a easy missionary tool that can bring people in church and give them a reason to come to church and feel the Spirit that Ben will bring him.

I still think it would be hard for me to give 3 hour trainings. I like environments where I can ask questions and get a response from the people I am teaching. I don't really like it when you are up there just talking and expect everyone just to accept the ideas you are throwing out there. Conversations are a lot easier to bring the Spirit if you ask me.

Transfers are this week. I think that one of us will be transferred. I have learned a lot from Elder Kolpakov and have enjoyed him as a companion. He told me the other day that I am the only companion that he has ever gotten along with. I hope that he has learned a thing or two from me and that it will help him. He reminds me a lot of you Ben. I like that.

Ben did you know that I look up to you a lot. I see you progressing in your letters and I love to see the difference in you. I remember the day that I got my mission call and you sent me a letter. This letter was filled with scripture references. I loved it and set a goal for myself to be able to quote as many scriptures as you do. I hope that you will keep sending me letters. I love the letters that you send.

We have been teaching this boy. He is one of the smartest young boys I have ever known. He is going to be baptized this Saturday.  I love him. You grow such a close relationship with the people you teach it is hard when you have to move on and you can't spend all day with them.

Also quick question for you. I went on an exchange and one of the elders is really lazy and I don't know how to motivate him to do anything. Before my mission I never expected missionaries to do anything bad, but I have found out that that is not true and I don't know how to motivate them. I am very blessed to be with missionary companions that want to be here and want to work. Ben I am sure that you have dealt with that and I want to ask you how you deal with it.

I think it is funny that Ben has 2 wards. It would be such a different mission if you only had one ward council to know. It would also be strange to talk to someone who has never known any LDS people.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Notes and Baptism

I have just recently read that talk. (Ed. Note: It is in this month's Ensign about GraceThe one on the Ensign is a shorter version of the original one online. I have actually have been teaching this to family at our dinner appointments. I think that it is funny that me and Ben have read this talk and then you had it given in your sacrament meeting.

This last Sunday was stake conference. We had 2 members of the 70, Elder Golden and Elder Ketch. They gave great talks. I think because of the talks I am going to change how I teach people.

So I will be brief and give part of my notes to you that I took.

Some people think that they need to be perfect and if they are not they are really disappointed in oneself. God does not want us to feel bad.
So Satan normally pushes us far away from righteousness. He makes us feel like we don't want to do anything good or things like that, but people overcome that so he ends up pushing the other way. He pushes us so far the we feel like we have to be perfect and if we are not we are failing. It is a tricky way that Satan gets us to feel bad about ourselves.
Gordon B Hinckley said "Just do the best you can." God does not expect us to be perfect here on Earth. we are supposed to make mistakes. That is why he sent a way out of all the mistakes that we would ever make.
They went a lot more into detail about this but this is just the brief version.

Next, Elder Golden talked about the Spirit of the Lord. I learned so much from this. I have completely been underestimating the power and purpose of the Holy Ghost. He first said that all people get some influence of the Holy Ghost. They can get a (teacher/testifier) this is what the Holy Ghost can do for non members.

Members get a (teacher/testifier) as well, but the difference between the two are astronomical. He then shared the example from Joseph Smith–History 74. Read this verse. What had Joseph Smith been doing all of the time before. He had done amazing things and understood so much, but after he had the Gift of the Holy Ghost so much more was open before him. When we are confirmed the Holy Ghost can do two more crucial things (sanctification/converter).

Now here is a good question fro you. Why do we go to the temple, pray, read, go to church, etc...  I have always answered this question like so. We are doing these things because they are a commandment, we will receive knowledge, we will feel better about ourselves and so on. Elder Golden said that these reasons are all correct, but the main reason is to have the Holy Ghost more in our lives. This is something that I need to study more on.

Also how often do you think you gave the Holy Ghost with you. 1/8 of the day, 1/4th of the day, 1/2 of the day. Elder Golden said they we have it the rest of our life after we receive it just at different strengths. A lot of the people believe that you have to be doing something spiritual to have the Holy Ghost with you, but when you are doing mundane tasks you don't have it with you. He told us that the only way for us to completely lose it is if you do something that can get you excommunicated. That surprised me, but made sense. We had been teaching this older man that had been excommunicated about 20 years ago. He said that he feels so lonely and he can tell he does not have the Holy Ghost. He loves it when we come over because he tells us he can feel the Holy Ghost so much more when we are there. He is literally craving the Holy Ghost. He is just not wanting to get it himself (not keeping the commitments we gave him ever) so we had to stop visiting so much. I thought that was really interesting.

Our life is a roller-coaster and some think that only at the high parts when you can really feel the Holy Ghost is the only time it is there. It is there almost all the time. We are just not always looking for it so we don't always notice it.

Sometimes we read a scripture with a nonmember and they read it and then they look at you like that have no idea what they read and they don't. I look at it and it is so simple to me and something I wonder if they are even trying. I was told that it is so much easier for me, a member of the church with the Holy Ghost, to understand the scriptures than that of someone without it.

We had a baptism this week. Yay! Brother Maltsberger finally got baptized. It was the coolest baptism I have ever been a part of. We had a brother of the ward who is about 80 and is not expected to live past this year because of the cancer he has) baptize him. Me and Elder Kolpakov helped baptism him because Bro Riggs could not even stand by himself. So I helped put Bro Maltsberger under the water and Elder Kolpakov held Bro Riggs so he would not fall in the water. It was really special. Bro Riggs has been his faithful home teacher for 10 years. He was so happy that he was able to perform the baptism. That was one of the best days in my mission.

We also have had 4 new bishops in our stake and a new stake president in the past 4 1/2 months that I have been here. That is a lot of new bishops that I have to meet.

I can't believe that Colton is 8 already. That is so cool.

Also Mom I know that money should not be the goal and he should work by faith and not his own works. He is just going to have to learn that when he is not able to make it one month and is going to have to make a decision God or Money.

I have seen a life size cardboard picture of a missionary that is out serving. They made it for a wedding of the missionaries sisters wedding so that she could stand in the line and not be left out. Now thy leave it in their living room. I think it is kinda creepy. Always just standing there smiling.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sick and Work

I think that is funny Ben that you teach that all the time. I almost always teach part member families so they at least know some of the things that we are talking about.

Question, how do you go about facing issues like reincarnation? There is this lady we are teaching and she believes in that as well as every thing else we teach. She is not willing to give up that belief. She told us that she knows it is true and she has received answers from God and psychics and other strange people like that and they told her those beliefs. The problem is that if we straight out tell her she is wrong then she will get mad at us and have us leave, but she is close to being baptized.

Right now I am sick. I can't talk at all. I have to whisper everything. Luckily my companion doesn't mind talking so he can do it.
Mom do you remember when I was sick when school started and I was frustrated because I could not ask any questions? This is like that except worse because I am the teacher and not the student any more. [I had a] blessing. I got sick about 2 days ago and I was worried because I had to give 2 talks in Sacrament meeting that day. I was blessed to be able to make it though my 2 talks and most of the night. Another blessing is that I rarely just sit there and don't say anything so this time I get to observe and see their body language and then when I want to say something I whisper really loud. It is kinda like a Russian appointment, but I can understand what they are saying.
One of the other disadvantages is that I don't want to shake people's hand so I don't get them sick as well but everyone wants to shake the "missionaries" hand. So I have to explain in a whisper that I am sick and I can't shake their hand unless they want to get sick as well.
The talks went well. I truly am getting better at them. I gave a 20 min talk when I was only supposed to give a 15 min talk. I think that is the longest I have ever stood at the pulpit at Church my whole life. The first subject was on studying the doctrine of Christ and the next topic was easy it was the Plan of Salvation so I did not even write any notes. We as missionaries get to teach that all the time so it was an easy topic. The blessing of it though is that missionaries normally teach it different then ward members because we teach it to people who know nothing about the gospel or very little. So it is easier to understand.
The main thing that is hard about talks is you don't get any response from the audience. Instead of a discussion we just talk not knowing if any of it went through at all to their heads.

We had a good week. Two weeks ago we only taught 1 lesson with a member present because we did not have any investigators to teach. This week we found 4 new investigators to teach so we will finally be teaching more people. Missionary work becomes hard when you don't have anyone you can teach.
We did a lot of tracting last week and I found my first new investigator though tracting in my whole mission. That was really cool. His name is Quince and he is 9 years old in a part member family. I always gain a great love for those I teach. I think I need to work on loving those that I don't teach (or the ones that don't love us) as well. I have got to do so much service in this area. Last week I got to lay sod (grass) for a potential investigators. They kinda set it up for a test. They told us afterwards that they came out right then because they wanted to see if we would offer to help instead of doing the lesson we had planned on doing. Of course we asked and they said that we could help. So in my white church clothes and in my dress pants we laid sod. It was hard work and afterwards we were so dirty we did not have on white shirts any more they were more of a brown color and my pants that were gray turned much more green then I thought that they could get. They washed off, but they were extremely nice to us afterwards. They love missionaries a lot more because of that experience so hopefully we will be able to transfer that to God and not us when we are able to come back over and do a lesson.
We also mowed a lawn, fixed a chicken coop, and helped one of our ward mission leaders move this really heavy couch by ourselves down this stairway. (That was way hard. We had to take so much of the couch apart to even fit it in the door. That took about 2 1/2 hours). Funny thing about that the wife started with a prayer to pray that we would be able to fit it in the door and get it down the stairs and then by the end of the 2 hours she was praying "I don't care about the couch just protect the missionaries so they don't get hurt."
I really enjoy doing charity for people.
I love you family
Elder Walker

P.S. Dad I was reading my patriarchal blessing the other day and it reminded me what a special home that I lived in and the circumstances. As a missionary we get to see the very desperate that can't even pay for food for their family and how grateful I am that I did not have to go through that. Also in Sunday School we talked about the role of family members and that also made me realiz
e how well you have followed the commandments that God gave fathers in families and I just hope I will be able to emulate you when I become a father. A mission helps you appreciate a lot of the things that we were given in life physical mental and spiritual.

Thanks Dad, keep up the good work.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Teaching Lessons

Ben I have found that more people here in Utah have gardens then people in California. I find that kinda funny.

This week we had a lesson with a baptist ordained minister. That was the strangest lesson I have ever had. I am now wondering if that is all the lessons that Ben teaches. It is so different then the lessons that I have taught. We started with a song and I started to start singing with my companion playing his electric piano. He stopped singing half way through because we were sing too fast. Have you ever heard a baptist sing? It is way different then the way that we sing. Then he said the prayer which was normal. We had the lesson, I am not sure how much of it he believed. When I was giving the first vision and talking about Joseph Smith he busted up laughing at me so hard. That was strange. I have never had that happen to me. When I give the first vision I slow down and say each word clearly. When Baptists talk they get really loud and say it strangely. He was laughing at me for about 2 min straight and we were just staring at him as if to say "what did we say". Then as we said the closing prayer he was saying things like "I love you Lord" or "thank you Jesus" and this was during the prayer that my companion was saying. Very strange. I do not know very much about other religions so I don't know what to expect when I have a lesson with someone that is not a religion that I have taught before.

Also, there is a man that we are teaching. He is way fun I loving going over to his house and teaching. He is a nonmember, but lives right next to the church and has never been inside. His wife is a member less active. He now wants to be baptized, but he does not know how he is going to pay tithing. We promised him that he would be ok and would not lose his house if he was to start paying tithing. He thinks he should be able to be baptized even if he does not pay tithing right away. We told him he could not. So, he is now taking classes to become a really good stock trader so he can pay for tithing. He does not really understand how to rely on Christ. He is working on it. He is now a "dry Mormon" or active non Mormon. Last week he had a dream telling him that he was ready and has always been ready. So he now has a baptism date of September 12 and also wants to get his daughter (age 35 or something) to be baptized with him on that day as well.  We have not met her yet, but he is trying to set something up with her so we can meet her as well so she can be baptized. This is a family that I will for sure visit later in my life. I will stay in contact for a very long time with them.

Miracles do happen I see them every day. I love the things that we do for God as missionaries and I love being able to recognize the miracles that happen to us each day.

Also I think you would get a kick out of this. last week I was saying that I really still don't like giving talks. Next week, I will be giving 2 talks in 2 different wards. I think God is trying to tell me something.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

More Baptisms!

We had another baptism in our stake Saturday. He is slightly autistic, but he loves the water. Missionaries have been working with him for about 2 years and he is finally baptized. His father was the one who baptized him. He was baptized about 2 years ago and last week he received the aaronic priesthood. He has been working so hard for that. He had to be baptized 6 times before Kayden went all the way under the water. I think his Dad was nervous about everything. Kayden loved it. He would come up. Look at his Dad and his Dad would look at the witnesses and they would say do it again. Lots of practice makes perfect.

After in the changing room Kayden said that that was the coolest bath tub he has ever seen. He loved it. When we were teaching Kayden we were wondering if he really was accountable because he would act completely different, but on the interview day he became really calm and answered the questions so much better then when we were practicing them. I believe that it was God helping Kayden. That was a really cool miracle. He has a really hard time sitting still as well so I was a little worried about his baptism and if he could sit that whole time. He did wonderfully. The Lord continues to bless everyone that follows him.

After he was baptized we had no investigators that were on date or no progressing investigators. So, last week we did lots of tracting. Probably more then I ever have done in my entire mission. We found some potentials, but no new investigators. I actually like tracting. You meet so many interesting people, but this Sunday we had a girl come with the Relief Society President to Church. She was a former investigator that dropped my companion before I was in the area. She said that she would like to meet again. So yesterday, at 4:30 we had an appointment and she is now on date for baptism on September 7! I am excited. we have been having good success in this area. The only problem is that we are baptizing all the investigators that we find so we have no one to teach.

Right before the baptism there was a crazy rain storm. It came in really fast and rained really hard. That was so much fun I love the rain. then it started to hail so we stopped and knocked on a random door so that we could be protected a little. No luck on the door but we did not get bruised from the hail. I have heard a saying for Utah. If you don't like the weather you wait 5 minutes. that is the most true saying I have ever heard describe Utah. The weather changes so fast. Last year it snowed 2 feet in June. Crazy.

Also happy birthday to you Mom. I am really bad at remembering the birthday of people as well. That is one of the reasons that I liked the newsletter. So I can remember when my family's birthdays are. I know that Monica is now rolling her eyes at me because I don't remember all of my family's birthdays. O well.

We also had a zone conference last week. I wrote a letter to Ben describing it. I can't describe it all in the time I have on the computer, but know that I learned a lot from it. I am glad I am not a Zone leader or district leader because I am still learning and I don't want to be the one teaching yet. Ben I am glad there are missionaries out there that like talks as much as you do. I really still don't like talks even if I am getting better at them. They don't scare me as much as they used to, but if I was asked to give a talk with out any forewarning I would tell the congregation that I am going to read lots of scriptures to them and just explain it. That is all that they would get out of me. If they wanted a better talk then they better give me more time to prepare it. Maybe I will change my attitude later in my mission, but for now that is what I am sticking to. I would read a really deep doctrine verse and discuss that verse for 15 min and then I would be done. Ex: I would talk about 2 Nephi 31:20 that would be my whole talk.  I would also talk very slow (unless there was an investigator there then I would talk about the importance of being baptized and would read 3 Nephi 11:33-34) just kidding. You have to read the verse to get my joke.

Ben the most I have ever ridden in a car in my whole mission is when I was on an exchange with the Tongan Elders and they cover the whole mission I was probably in the car for a whole 40 min once. and that was across my whole mission.

Robert I sent your letter today. Just still love me even with what I said OK! I also wrote you a letter Monica, but it was a lot shorter then the one that Robert got. Sorry Robert's letter is 2 pages long and took me an hour and a half to write it. I was tired after that. Sorry Monica.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Baptisms and Scriptures

About the fence. I have completely rebuilt a fence for a service project and it was a lot of fun. We did it for a nonmember. Since you share the fence with the neighbors I would suggest to ask the missionaries to come over and help rebuild the fence. The only problem will be when they are able to do it because they can't do it on Saturday, Sunday, or Monday, and in the evening is when most of the appointments are. So it would have to be on a Friday when Dad is home so he can direct them. Then afterwards, have a BBQ and invite the neighbors and the missionaries so they can know who helped build their fence. This is a great way to invite the missionaries to meet with someone. This is one of the best things in missionary work. Service is a great way for people to feel comfortable around missionaries and let them know that they are regular people too. Extra bonus they do service for you as well. It helps build your trust in them as well as our neighbors trust in them. (By your fruits ye shall know them) Matt 7:15-20 also somewhere in 3 Nephi. This is how the people will recognize us as missionaries of Jesus Christ. That is also why we are always dressed up in church clothing.

Question when does my plaque say I will be getting home? On my ministerial certificate it says I will start in year 2013 Jan and end in 2014 Dec 31 if you only look at the years it looks like I will only be out for a year. I thought that was kinda cool.

We had a baptism this week for Olivia. It was very spiritual baptism. She is really shy. (Which I did not know until her baptism because she is definitely not shy in her house where we teach her.) When she was confirmed (they do it at Sacrament Meeting) she was so scared she had her head down the whole time, but I know that she loved it any way even if she was scared.

We have had the most Russians that Elder Kolpakov has ever taught on his mission. One of then was texting Dad. We had a Russian baptism kinda she was taught here. (she was here for vacation for about 2 months because her husband is working for the Church and had to come down here for work) She was baptized in Nauvoo when she went on the pageant. They have there. I have never talked to her, (because I can't speak Russian) but I could feel the spirit in the lessons. I think I sent a picture home of her. That was cool. She is now back in Russia.

I have heard a lot about the new movie in the temple. I can't wait to see it. Strange that they are having so many changes in the Church lately.

D&C 84:14 The stakes in Zion must be strengthened. This is what needs to happen. a quick activity that you could do in FHE tonight: write down all the things that the church has been doing to help strengthen Zion. Then write down what you can do to help the Lord in this work as well. Then execute the ideas. To help get some Ideas watch the video hastening the work of salvation (I Will Go Where You Want Me To Go). It is on this website you just watch the video that is 5 min and 45 sec then pray about things you can do for people in everyone's life. As missionaries we do this. We have every one write down all the non-members that they know and then they will pray about which one of the names will be receptive and then finally put a star next to the ones you feel inspired to do. We ask people not to talk during it so they do not get distracted and then at the end you will probably have some of the same people as stars on each of the papers. This is just an idea that came from a general authority that did a tour though our area.

Well I hope that you will have a great day and remember if the Lord stopped blessing you, you would stop breathing (Mosiah 2:21). Always remember that the Lord will never stop blessing you. You just have to remember that all blessings are based on obedience (D&C 130:20-21). I don't know what law I am being obedient that I am able to breath. So the more obedient you are the more blessings you will get. I thought this was kinda funny. You have to read the scripture. It goes on Mosiah 2:21-24

I hope all of this makes sense. It makes sense in my head so hopefully you will understand it.
A huge spider (for utah) that we found in our apartment
My bike popped 4 times this week. This was the second to the last time.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Unusual P-Day

We have a mission tour on Monday then transfers on Tuesday so our p-day has to be today. we had a good week we found 2 new investigators. This is the first family that I have ever taught that is not a part member family and is actually accepting of the gospel!

These are people who were recently baptized. One of them was a Russian that I could not say a word to her. Second picture is that one.

We have an elder in our district that wants to go home. He is way funny and is a good missionary but doesn't feel like he can do the work. He has only been out for he has already made up his mind that he will go home on Tuesday (transfer day). This makes me sad. I know that if he were to stay a little longer that he would see the excitement of missionary work.

Have I ever told you that I don't like transfers? lol I really don't, but I have to trust the Lord and our mission president that the right choice will be made and that I will grow from the experiences.

I don't know what else to say so I love you family
Elder Walker

p.s. Mom you will be proud of me. I am starting to play the piano again. A little bit. We have a keyboard in our home and when my companion is doing language study. I will be playing hymns on the keyboard. Problem is that is if one of us gets transferred we will have no language study time so I will not have any time to practice any more. :(

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Children and Tithing

I have the new scripture mastery card and they are all new ones. It is cool. Thanks for answers for my question. I did know that it was easier for people to repent here on earth with those conflicts that we have to deal with, but what I don't understand is what if you never received the gospel here on earth. So you never received a testimony of Christ in the flesh? Then what? I understand that God is fair, but the scriptures don't lie.

I talked to my district leader about intelligences. He believes that we have first an intelligence than a spirit and then a body. So we still have intelligence but we also have a spirit and a body, each one makes it so we can progress more and more. I will read the D&C scripture thanks Ben.

We had a baptism this week for A. She is 9 years old. She was very excited but her attention span is about 5 min so she was crawling on the floor after the baptism when there were talks. It was kinda funny to see the adults try to deal with her. I have learned how to deal with those kids. You just have to have patience. Also would you thank the Chapman kids for me. I have learned so much better how to have kids enjoy experiences and enjoy your presence. (Some missionaries don't know how to deal with them in a fun way. They just get frustrated when they do not cling to every word.) I have learned this by babysitting the Chapmans. I have learned a valuable skill that I am so glad that I have. I think it will help me throughout my life. I have a much greater love for children. Other ways that this helps. 1) the parents trust you a lot more when their kids like you. The kids are a lot easier to gain trust than the parents 2) the kids listen to you so much better when you make it fun for them.

Question for you Ben.
How do you teach the law of chastity to kids?
What we do is:
"Don't think about (point at your head), don't look at (point at your eyes), don't talk about (point at your mouth) and don't touch (put your hands out) anything that is under the swimsuit. and that is about it. If you have any questions talk to your parents."
We call it the swimsuit rule.
This is how I was taught by my trainer and how every one in the whole mission does it, but if that was me I would be confused as a 9 year old. I think that there are better ways but I cant figure it out. What does your mission do?

I love teaching about tithing.
I use Leviticus ch 27 v 30: And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land,or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s: it is holy unto the Lord.

So every thing is the Lord's anyway. Then we read Malachi 3:8-10
8 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.
9 Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.
10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
Then, if they are worried about not being able to pay it I use the story of Elijah:
8 And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying,
9 Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee.
10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink.
11 And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand.
12 And she said, As the Lord thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.
13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son.
14 For thus saith the Lord God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the Lord sendeth rain upon the earth.
15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days.
16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord, which he spake by Elijah. (1 Kings 17:8-16).
Why would a prophet of God be so inconsiderate of the women and her child? Why must he be feed first? How would you feel? You have one meal left and a man of God says to her, feed me. Then if you feed me then you meal will not waste. so relating that to tithing. you can't make the payments now and you say. How does the Lord expect me to pay him tithing and I can't even pay tithing now?  That seems like a bad God. (Then they say something like I will pay it when I can) now back to the story. The woman knew she could not live much longer (can't pay the rent) and she is supposed to now feed someone else as well (pay tithing) how does that work? the Lord works by miracles if we have the faith that he will help us in our time of need.

Then we get extra blessings. Later her son dies.
17 And it came to pass after these things, that the son of the woman, the mistress of the house, fell sick; and his sickness was so sore, that there was no breath left in him. (1 Kings 17:17).
So Elijah raises him from the dead.
22 And the Lord heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived.
23 And Elijah took the child, and brought him down out of the chamber into the house, and delivered him unto his mother: and Elijah said, See, thy son liveth. (1 Kings 17:22-23).
So many blessing come from tithing. It is one of the coolest commandments because you can see first hand the blessings it provides.

Quick story I sometimes tell you look at you fireplace and say, "When you give me heat I will give you wood." And then the fireplace tells you, "When you give me wood I will give you heat."

This is a huge commandment of faith.

I hope that all makes sense. I don't really have any time to check if it does. It is a lot easier to teach it then to write it all down.  :)

Also watch: "Lessons I Learned as a Boy" this was taken in my area really close to our bishop. If you look close you can see faded houses in the distance that is most of my area. I thought that was cool. I have ridden on that dirt rode with my bike that they show in the movie.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Questions for Brother, Elder B. Walker

[Elder J. Walker's questions and response to his brother's Elder B. Walker's email home.]

I also gave a talk yesterday, but I had time to prepare. I can't believe that you only are 155 pounds Ben. I am bigger then you now. It will be strange when we stand next to each other after my mission. I don't think I have gained any weight lately. I am still about 170. I think that is because I am now on a bike a lot more often. Me and my companion race sometimes. The max speed I got to on level ground is about 35 MPH. That is fun when you are going the same speed as the cars next to you.

We had 2 baptisms this week, Eddie Woodson and Mike Pearson. Mike read the whole Book of Mormon in 3 weeks. That was before he was baptized. He was the most prepared investigator I have ever taught. I love those people where they are like unto little children because they are so willing to learn and accept new ideas.

Ask any of the elders in your area Ben if they are from Sandy, West Jordan, Riverton, South Jordan, Draper, Kearns, or Hairmen. Those are the only cities in my mission.

Also Ben, we have a ward and a branch in our area that I have never gone to their Sacrament Meeting because we have had no work there and we have had to be at other sacrament meetings instead due to investigators. So I know very few people from that area.

Most of the kids in Utah have already started school. It is strange to think that I don't have to worry about school for a long time.

Mike's Friends
We have a lot of work in this area. When I first came into it we have 1 person on date and 2 lessons with a member present a week. I remember struggling because we were working so hard to get those people and nothing was coming. Then about 3 weeks later we would get calls from people and tell us that they have a friend that wants to learn about the gospel. This happened quite a lot. Eddie was a media referral and Mike's girlfriend's Dad called us and told us that he has someone that wanted to receive the lessons. We now have 10 lessons with a member present a week and 4 people on date to be baptized even when we already baptized 2 people on Saturday. This is a valuable lesson to me because it shows me that I can't do it by myself. We have to rely on the Lord to help us as we do His work. (This was the topic of my talk yesterday). It says in Preach My Gospel page 97 that "No man can preach the Gospel without the Holy Ghost." It also says to not rely on yourself, but on the Spirit. How much can we do by ourselves? Basically nothing. We would not be here if we only relied on ourself.

 21 I say unto you that if ye should serve him who has created you from the beginning, and is preserving you from day to day, by lending you breath, that ye may live and move and do according to your own will, and even supporting you from one moment to another—I say, if ye should serve him with all your whole souls yet ye would be unprofitable servants.
(side note if we serve him with our whole soul we would still not profit God anything. We are so small compared to God, but we have the potential to become like him)
 22 And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; and he has promised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land; and he never doth vary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do keep his commandments he doth bless you and prosper you.
 23 And now, in the first place, he hath created you, and granted unto you your lives, for which ye are indebted unto him.
 24 And secondly, he doth require that ye should do as he hath commanded you; for which if ye do, he doth immediately bless you; and therefore he hath paid you. And ye are still indebted unto him, and are, and will be, forever and ever; therefore, of what have ye to boast?
We do have the potential to become like him. D&C 76:58: "Wherefore, as it is written, they are gods, even the sons of God—"

Russian New Member
That is my lesson for the day.

Also I have 2 questions that I have been thinking of this past week I want someone to help me answer them:

1)  D&C 76:74: "Who received not the testimony of Jesus in the flesh, but afterwards received it."
This is the people that will go to the terrestrial kingdom, but why if they except it in the spirit world do they not get to receive the celestial glory only because they did not receive it in the flesh? So does that mean when I teach someone and they don't receive it that I have condemned them because I taught them and they were not willing to progress?

2) What is an intelligences? Abraham 3:22: "Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intelligences that were organized before the world was; and among all these there were many of the noble and great ones;"
Is it like the dust of the Earth? like our physical bodies were created? Did we think for ourselves while we were intelligences?

Just some questions that I don't know and was wondering if you could find the answers for me.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Weather and Day-to-Day

I also would like to swap weather here in Utah for Modesto weather. It changes every 5 min. I think it is kind annoying. You don't know whether to go out in rain, snow, or really hot sun.

I got pictures of BJ parent's house [Elder J. Walker's brother-in-law's parents]. We were driving about 3 minutes away from it and I decided to get a picture of it. I thought that was kind cool. We have an elder who lives with his aunt. He is a Tongan elder.

We have 5 people on date. 2 of them are going to be baptized this week. Yay. I love it when people come closer to the waters of baptism. I took lots of pictures this week. (I always think of you when I take a picture Mom).

A lot happened this week I just cant think of it right now. As you can tell we are writing later then normal. We did some service for a really cool investigator that we picked up. He came to church yesterday. I was so excited. 

Well I will try to write more next week. 

Elder Joshua Walker

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Warm Rain

So I laughed at the first part of [Elder B. Walker's] letter because I am sitting here right now drenched in rain. It is still hot even when it is raining. I don't like warm rain. You can't put on a jacket because it is too hot, but if you don't you will be drenched! Oh well. We had an 8 year old baptism the other day. It was a less active family that we have been trying to help and their son got baptised the other day. Yay! I love being a missionary even with the hard times there is one good moment that makes us for a million bad ones and I have not had a million bad one 

Well I started way late today so I don't have any time.
Love you all

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Utah Experiences

My companion and a Member
Here in Utah it is very hot. About the same as it is in California I am sure, but in California I was not outside all the time. Ben, I am drenched sometimes at people doors too, but not from a storm but from sweating so much. There was a record high about 4 days ago for June. It was 105. We had a car this week, but the problem is that we don't ever drive very far. We drive at the most 5 min and at that time the car is just starting to get the same temp as outside. The car is about 130 inside when we start, and about 95 when we get out. 

Interesting story. We were going through the unbaptized kids list and the very first door we knocked on was an anti-Mormon guy. He came out with a paper and a pen and asked for the people that sent us there. We told him that no one sent us to his door, but God and that we were representatives of Jesus Christ. He then got really mad and told us to tell who ever sent us that they don't want any thing to do with him. So basically he said he doesn't want anything to do with God. He then started to swear at us and told us that he was going to go to church and find out who our leader is and yell at him in the middle of sacrament. So then we told him when church starts and that he is welcome to come. (We were not trying to be mean). He then got really really mad and got into his car. Almost ran over our bikes and drove off and told us that we were going to be sorry. (By the way, this is not super unusual. It does not happen much but every once in awhile we will knock on a door and something like that will happen.) The strange thing is that he actually did something. The next day we had correlation meeting and the Stake President showed up and told us that he [the anti-Mormon man] went to the temple (it is like 10 min from his house). He [anti-Mormon] tried to go in and the Temple President talked to him. (I don't know exactly what happened there, except that he was really mad and told the temple president that he does not want any one coming by his house again). He told us earlier that he was going to call the police. He did call them, but he probably got a hold of a Mormon there because they told him that the missionaries did nothing wrong and that they are allowed to do that.

This experience went into my journal.
I was debating whether to tell you or to wait until I get home. I don't want you to think I am harmed from any of it because I am not, but I want you to be aware that even though we are on the Lord's mission (all of us not just missionaries) we still face trials.

We baptized Brandon on Saturday. The water heater did not work so we heated some water in the kitchen. My companion did the actual baptism and he said that the water was freezing. It reminded me of Ben's baptism where the water was really cold. I did the confirmation the next day. We were doing it at 9 and we also were going to give talks at 9 in a different ward. So we did the confirmation and then hurried over to the other ward and walked in about 15 min late and gave our talks then we gave 2 more presentations for primary. It was really busy yesterday. Sundays are crazy for missionaries and I thought that we were commanded to rest on the Sabbath Day.

Also give my thanks to the Chapmans. I am really good at getting along with kids because of them. We are teaching two 9 year olds and one came in the other day and said "McKenzie has a crush on you," then turns to McKenzie and said "I told him your secret." lol I thought that was really funny. My companion thought it was hysterical. I really do get along with kids really well. I know how to play with them while still being a missionary. I think that is due to babysitting the Chapman kids.

Elder Joshua Walker

Monday, June 24, 2013

Notes from "Hastening the Work of Salvation" Broadcast

Yesterday, there was a worldwide church broadcast about missionary work and some changes. It can be found here. Elder J. Walker received bullet point notes from his mission president, President Miller. Elder J. Walker included his own notes in italics and parentheses.

Last time I will see President Miller
Message from the President:
Worldwide Leadership Training- Work of Salvation
23rd June 2013
Jeffrey R. Holland
  • Women need to be heard in ward councils (Very important they have a different view about things then we do as men.)
  • There are 405 mission presidents
  • Area 70’s in charge of transmitting information through coordinating councils.  This meeting used to carry the title Member Missionary Coordinating Council.  This indicates what the major purpose of this meeting is about.
  • Christ will direct you in your efforts far beyond your capacity. (Always rely on the Lord. Interesting thing I learned. The reason we are only allowed to call home is not because we will get homesick, but because we need to learn to rely on the Lord and not our family like we have our whole life.) 

Elder L. Tom Perry
  • We need to teach every kindred tongue and people.   The need has never been greater. (That is why they are letting Missionaries go out earlier not the other way around. They need the gospel spread now) 
  • Never a more exciting time. (Yay this is the best time to do missionary work)
  • Baptize repentant, qualified individuals. (Don't baptize for a number)
  • The key to missionary work is with the bishops and the ward mission leaders. (Us as missionaries can't do it alone tracking does not work very well. there are better ways.)
  • Keys of stake presidents and mission presidents must be joined together for the common cause. (They need to put all the keys together for it to work the best way)
  • New tools coming to missionaries: internet, Face book, Tablets There will need to be close monitoring of the missionaries using these tools. (I don't know when this is coming, but when it does it will make the work become a lot more efficient and force missionaries to fill out their paper work.)
  • Missionaries will be at meeting houses to give tours. (I have never done this don't know how it will work.)
  • Adapting to the times, the way we share the gospel is evolving; the mandate given by the Savior to preach the Gospel has not changed.  The old ways of door to door contacting are no longer workable. (Again tracting is bad does not work very well. There are better ways)
  • We have 70,274 missionaries now serving in 405 missions throughout the world. (One of those numbers is me)
  • Kids soccer analogy- Same goal but disorganized.  In the beginning all the players hover over the ball until they are taught a more effective way of playing various positions.  Knowing our role brings greater success. We must coordinate our efforts with the members and the missionaries. Ward councils are the key to this effort. (This reminded me of Robert. When he was younger He had great skill but he did not know how to use it the best way. this is like missionaries we might be good at teaching but we all can do better)
  • Ward mission leaders are to assure that missionaries’ planners are filled with productive activities  and the missionaries are engaged all day long. (I feel this is one of the hardest part of missionary work. If this actualy happened I would be so happy.)
  • Small % of converts receives the new member discussions. (We have been doing a really good job at this. I hope they are doing this in my last area)
  • Anxiously engaged.  Don’t wait to be asked or assigned.  Act vs acted upon- not just doing a checklist or following a handbook.
  • Internalize the covenant of baptism- that is when you will go and do. Act, not wait to be asked.
  • We must stand as a witness of Jesus Christ at all times and in all places.

VIDEO ON THE IMPORTANCE OF MISSIONARY SERVICE WAS SHOWN  Care must be taken to keep from having action to avoid action.  We must carefully plan service with a purpose.  (Side note from mission president: too much service can be bad because we will not be teaching and teaching is central to what missionary's do (this is in Preach My Gospel))

Jeffrey R. Holland:  Some are afraid to extend the invitation but if done in love there is no reason to fear.  All must be baptized to enjoy eternal life. (Never be afraid to invite to be baptize if you don't you are following the Devil he is the one who scares us and tells us that they will not be our friends if we ask them. I have invited people to be baptized that I have seen on the streets that I did not know I this that way cool especially when I am not afraid to do it.)

Elder Neil L. Anderson
  • Work begins on our knees. (Always pray)
  • When we feel spiritual impressions – go with them.  Christ will not let us fail when we do our part. (One of my favorite scriptures is Moses 6:31-32 read that then read Moses 7:13)
  • Stake and ward councils are to look after the members, active and inactive alike.
  • We are entitled to the Lord’s help.   It’s his work.  He won’t let us fail if we do our part. act
  • Help investigators feel needed, the church needs him/her. (Some people leave the church because they feel they are not needed don't let that happen tell they how much you love when they come to church or an activity)
  • Miracles don’t always come the way we expect; the Lord blesses us with miracles his own way, if we act. (Another scripture Mormon 9:19-20)
  • We can’t just wait and expect things to happen; we must act for the Lord to bless us (Ward councils make visits)- Pres. Monson quote.  “Wishing will not make it so, action is needed.” 

Elder Russell M. Nelson
  • There must be unity between members and missionaries, no divisions between different facets of the work.
  • Act out of love rather than being acted upon
  • The bishop and the ward mission leader are the two key players. The Bishop holds the keys. (Bishops need to not delegate the missionary work to another person it needs to be them, but as missionaries we do not have the right to tell them that. that would just cause problems. we can't tell our leaders what to do.)
  • It’s the WML’s job to fill the missionaries’ planners, to the point that the missionaries don’t have to knock doors.  He should be the best friend of the missionaries.  The WML makes the connection between the missionaries and the members. The goal of each ward should be that the missionaries teach 20 lessons per week. 
  • Handbook explains the what, not the ‘how’. (Handbook is way cool I want one. the way for everything is basically told in that handbook.)
  • Members and missionaries need to get to know one another.  Missionaries should be a part of the ward. (This is really hard for us because I have to go to 7 wards and a branch I need to work on this.) 

President Boyd K. Packer
Teaching is the key
  • Revelation doesn’t come until after you act (open your mouth).  We must depend more on the Lord. 
  • Trust the spirit.
  • Repent=Repeat, go back to where you went wrong and fix it, you can’t move on until this is done.
  • The atonement is the mighty healer. (I have seen the atonement work in people and heal people)
  • When I leave this earthly realm I will begin a new realm and a new school.
  • I know the Lord lives.  I know the Lord. (This is big. He Knows the Lord. He has seen the lord in gentile speech) (this is according to our mission president)

President Thomas S. Monson
  • There is NOTHING more explicit than the Savior’s mandate to preach the gospel and baptize.
  • When we act the Lord blesses us with success.
  • Door to door contacting is not the way to proclaim the gospel.  Members must become involved.  This is the better way. (Always a better way then door to door contacting)
Someone who was baptized in my last stake. I was able to go back to see his baptism. I taught him for a long time,
By the way I stayed in the south mission if you did not know. 

I spent too long going thought the notes so I dont have any time so good bye.

Elder Walker. 

P.S. If you did not guess, there are lots of spiders where I live.
Another spider.
A spider
A spider that was in an apartment
Helicopter with a gun on the front of it.