Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Selwin Dreads the Cold

So, this week has been really good.  It could have been better, but hey, at least we got the opportunity to teach the gospel to a few people we met, including one really nice lady who asked us to come back.  You know I will, but it's not about me, it's about sharing the gospel.

Yep, but as you know there is and will always be opposition against anything good, including the message of the gospel we share.  We know this battle has already been won.  We just have to stand firm and hold steadfast to His words and show our faith in Him. As I was doing my personal study this week I was reading in the Book of Mosiah, chapter 10.  In this chapter it talks a lot about how the Lamanites hatred came about and why they fought the Nephites.

And then I looked at how the Nephites were trying so badly to bring their brethren to the truth and to share the knowledge they had concerning God and His words. Then it brought to life the words the prophet Joseph Smith said, "The worth of every soul is important in the eyes of God" and I totally agree with him. So do all you can to help those around you see the light and don't you give up on them because God wouldn't and neither should you.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Booking in Brockett

So, I’ve been transferred to Brockett, and guess what else?  I am companions with another Guyanese … Elder Stewart, so now I have a home boy at my side.  

Anyway, this week with me transferring into my new area and all, we were out doing a lot of finding as we are not teaching anyone as yet but we will. The place gets cold at night here so I cherish the sunshine every chance I get because I know more cold is coming.  I am trying to get prepared. For the past few days we have met quite a lot of people and have done alot of talking which is okay in my book as I love talking about the gospel.  There is one member here who served his mission in Guyana and he has a super huge flag from Guyana so we are best friends now!  It really is all about the gospel and the joy it brings to our lives.  

Celebrating Hallowe'en at the ward Trunk or Treat event
But, as we strive to help others have the same joy, the adversary often likes to jump in when he is not welcomed.  Then we have to kick him out and, hey, give him a good kick, too because we do not want him back!  We met some pretty cool people and, of course, the not-so-cool.  That’s OK because its all part of missionary work. I am here to work and if it means hours upon hours of walking the streets then I will gladly do it for there is no greater joy. As missionaries, we know there will be challenges but we can all overcome them, for after all, we have the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  As we remember and keep pressing forward we will find joy and happiness for that is the promise given to us as we follow the example Our Savior set for us. As we give up our desires and our will to take upon ourselves His will and His desires we truly will see what He sees and hear what He hears and feel what He feels for all of our brothers and sisters who are members or not.  (See Ether 12:27)

Monday, October 20, 2014

Simeon in the Shadows

In our shadows, we see who God wants us to be!
Okay, not the news I wanted to get but, hey, still awesome news. I am getting transferred again and I do not know where as yet but I will on Wednesday. This week was the BE BOLD week and trust me when I say this … it was.  Last week I told you about an 8-year old boy who threw his grandmother’s lighters away.  This week I FLUSHED her cigarettes away, as well. Yep, the Holy Ghost was really and truly in the lesson and at first I really did not want to do it but, like Selwin said, when you receive a prompting from the Holy Ghost you are receiving a prompting from God.  So I followed the prompting and testify to this … never have I been so bold before and with the new found boldness I looked the grandmother in the eyes, took her cigarettes and told her her Heavenly Father is telling her to stop now, not tomorrow or the day after that, but Now! Of course, it took a lot for her to let go but I was not going to return those cigarettes to her.  Finally she said okay.  Then we gave her a blessing and when we said “amen” she said, “I felt something going out and joy coming in.  My companion, Elder Barraclough and I testified this was the Holy Ghost coming in and evil going out.  We told her Heavenly Father knows she can beat this addiction. The remainder of the week was okay.  We did a lot of finding and had some success so, hey, hard work does pay off when we put our trust in the Lord and remember he is always there for us.  Whenever the voice of doubt and fear tries to take over, we should cast it out and remember the words in Doctrine and Covenants 6:36:

"Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not."

And that is what I encourage all of us to do and we will win the Lord's battle.  If he ever needs us to be bold and to testify with everything we've got, just trust him and do it. I testify as we continue to unite as members and missionaries we will see success and bring many, many, many more souls unto Christ by helping them to see they can be forgiven of their sins and by receiving the Holy Ghost will always have Him to be with them.  As they endure they will receive Eternal Life in the Celestial Kingdom of God. The Prophet Joseph Smith answered this question: How do we endure? His reply was "We trust in God and go on" I know as we trust in God we will indeed endure.

Selwin and the Hot Rod

I'm sitting here trying to think about how to describe my week.  So after some yawning and stretching I finally decided to get started. Well, this week has been one filled with work which was awesome.  Unfortunately, though we did not have a lot of success, but that's alright.

It's been good. I'm just trying to settle in here but for some reason the weather seems to be changing, and not to my liking.  It’s getting really chilly out here. Of course, every other elder out here likes it because they are from Utah and Idaho, yep, all except me. I love the heat so I've had to exercise a lot of Christ-like attributes this week so things have been getting better, so yeah me!!!!

I came across a really interesting scripture this week, taken from Mosiah 4:27.  It reads:

And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order, for it is not requisite a man should run faster than he has strength.  And Again, it is expedient he should be diligent, that thereby he mgith win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order.

I mostly like the part where it said "it is not requisite for a man to run faster than he has strength" because for me it was just saying do all you can do.  No matter what, give it your all. Don't look forward, just give it your all and those rewards will find you and the success you will get will be even more worth it. Well, I love you all and hope you all have a great week.  Till then …

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Selwin Reports In

Me with more of my peeps!
Well, we didn't do much this week, to be honest.  That’s sad but hopefully things will get better.  It was an alright week, I guess, with some truly amazing revelations and one awesome Zone Conference.

Me with Sister Harr from St. George
At Zone Conference we had the privilege of being taught by Elder W. Craig Zwick, a member of the First Presidency of the Seventy, and his wife.  They were both just amazing. I felt the spirit so strong it was amazing.  Learning how to be a better missionary is always good.  Sister Zwick said as she was giving her talk, "Enjoy this journey for it will be the most beneficial in you life" and that just made me want to jump out of that bench and say "heck, yeah I will, Sister Zwick" but of course I didn't because I wanted to keep the spirit with me.  To be honest that made my Zone Conference way better with all this power stuff. To all my mothers … I love you.  You already know that but I just wanted to let you all know your words and counsel and all your advice never goes out the window.  For some reason I can never get it out of my head.  I guess that’s the power of being a mother (not taking anything away from the fathers and the prophet and all of those general authorities).

On Saturday, I received a call from my last companion in Shreveport who was telling me about the problems he was having with a few of the elders, including him wanting to give a blessing to a non-member’s daughter who we had met while tracting. For some reason when he said the lady's name, I was prompted to tell him to go now and do it.  He thought it was too late but I reminded him we can get in at 9:30 and so they went. At around 9:05 I got a call from him saying, "Elder Lovell, there's only been one time on my mission when I felt the spirit this strongly but tonight it was way above that." I just listened as the three elders who went bore their testimony about how they felt. They then said, “thank you for telling us to go.”  I reminded them it wasn't me they should thank. Later that night I realized it was the Holy Ghost that had given me the prompting.  It reminds me unless we listen we can never hear the Holy Ghost and when we don't heed to His promptings we are turning away from the promptings of the Lord.

I hope we will all listen and heed to the Spirit when He speaks because we never know whose life we will bless.  It could be yours or someone else's or both as was the case here. Stay strong and take care. 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Simeon at 6-Months

Opening my 6-month anniversary box from St. George
Honestly, this week was a little different than I thought it would be. We got a larger area added to ours and the joy one feels when going into a new area is awesome.  We just did not see a whole lot of success though and it was a little strange to us. We hardly talked to anyone and to top that off, none of our investigators came to church, which is not great, but one important thing I have learned and appreciate is patience.  The adversary always looks to foil our plans when he sees us making headway or breaking new ground in helping others to come unto Christ.  Our own perseverance and the power of God will always prevail and I know things will get better and we will see a lot more success.  Of course, we have to put in the effort first and, then there is always a bright side to the week. Those little things will always make us happy and put a smile back on our faces.  

My new stallion
This week it came from a little 8-year old boy who wants to be baptized so badly and wants his grandmother to do the same.  The grandmother has some trouble with smoking and drinking so we are helping her to overcome those habits but I guess her grandson had a better plan.  He took both of her lighters outside, threw both away and declared boldly and triumphantly, "now my grandma won’t smoke anymore!"  It touched my heart to see this little 8-year-old boy who had the wisdom and knowledge to look out for his grandma and to put his faith in God so they can be baptized together.  It brought a smile to my face and it made me remember when the Savior said we should become as little children or we cannot inherit the kingdom of Heaven. 

I believe if we humble ourselves and are submissive, meek, humble and lowly-of-heart we can all become as a little child.  We will not grow down or become shorter but instead we will grow to love and cherish the simple things and be willing to follow more in our Savior’s footsteps. Hey, if I could be a little child again can you imagine all the treats and candy I would receive but most importantly the blessings my Heavenly Father would bless me with for my willingness to follow his son Jesus Christ. So my challenge is to become as a little child and remember as you do so you are in truth preparing yourself and others to live in the Kingdom of God.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Selwin is Transferred

Our investigator showed up for church today!!!
This week I have some new news and then some awesome news. The new news is I got transferred.  Yep, I'm now in Gulfport, Mississippi. I pretty much moved from one end of the mission to the other but I'll give you a better report the next time. 

Time for the awesome news.  Are you ready for this?  Are you sure? OK, here it is.  We had an investigator in church and it was General Conference as well so it was a bonus. It was so awesome I wanted to jump out of my seat so bad but conference had just started.  It was amazing though and after all this time of not having anyone come to church it was a really amazing time for me. No, I didn't cry cause real men don't cry, we only shed tears which I didn't do either.  It was just awesome and to top it off conference was awesome, too. I enjoyed every single minute of it especially the first session on Saturday when everything they talked about I had thought about during my personal study time and had written it down. It was like I was retaking notes, even though theirs were way better but it was just amazing to me.

I guess it was God's way of showing me He inspires us all no matter where we are. I liked how Elder Bednar closed conference with his talk to investigators but I think it was to us, as well. We need to show that same love and happiness the gospel brings us no matter what.  A member told me something which really made me think. She said, “a lot of us talk the talk but do we walk the walk"  Right away I though about Jesus and the examples He left for us to follow and how important they are for us to do. So my question to all of us is: are we talking the talk and walking the walk"? I sure hope so.  If not you better get to it!

1 Peter 2:21 reads: "For even hereunto were ye called; because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps.”

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Simeon Enjoys Conference Talks

So this week was General Conference. I was looking forward to it, because I had some okay … well, I should say a lot of questions I needed answers for, and, of course, I got them! But, my joy was even more great when after over a month of teaching, two investigators finally came to church.  In all we had three there to listen to the Prophet and Apostles of the Lord. Yes, I know it was my Heavenly Father's hand all over this one, and, I will gladly allow him to take the lead in matters such as this. I enjoyed General Conference in every extent. I felt the Holy Spirit throughout every single talk and session. It was incredible and, of course, I was taking notes as fast as I could.  For me the one most important thing that struck me was when President was telling the wonderful story of the battleship everyone thought was indestructible until it was destroyed.  Just before he finished that story I pulled out my planner and read the words President Monson quoted, "A man without a purpose is like a ship without a rudder."  Unbelievably, President Monson then said the exact same words. I was blown away and impressed at how marvelous are the works of the Lord and his Prophets and Apostles.  Then I wondered to myself what is my purpose? And I received the answer the very next day, which was Sunday, in the talk Elder M. Russell Ballard give when he said "Stay On The Ship Of Zion.”  I realized my purpose extends beyond serving a mission because my mission will still continue even after I am home.  It made me realize God has a plan for me and for all of us. So my little suggestion to myself and others is we “stay inside the boat and help others get back on as well" for will it not be wonderful to know we have all exercised our faith and we are all on the same ship which is leading us to eternal life and the celestial kingdom of God.

2 Nephi 31:19-21  
The Baptists getting a headstart on Hallowe'en
 19 And now, my beloved brethren, after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save.

 20 Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

21 And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen.