Thursday, September 29, 2016

Coronas and Karaoke are Hispanics best friends!! .... until they find the Gospel

Elder Blake and Elder Odland
We found these faces at the store....Sometimes Missionary work can feel just like this!!

General conference will be awesome! I can’t wait. 
It’s hard to think that it is already here! 
I feel like it was just a month ago when I last watched it. 
I hope some of our investigators will be able to
come and watch it   :).

I am enjoying missionary work SO much.
We are having a blast getting so much work done.
I love it.

This week was sweet!!
We had something amazing happen! Way back in Kaw River, Elder Bagley and I taught this boy named Logan. We taught him for almost my whole time there and then he moved to Olathe. I was soon called to serve in Lee's Summit for the summer and Logan went up to Michigan to visit his grandma. Then I got transferred to Olathe and when Logan returned from his grandma's and moved in with his mom in Olathe. I was excited he was back in my area and that we were able to continue to teach him and he progressed really well! There was so much change in him since the time I first taught him and he has such a better understanding now! Then Elder Hinrichsen and I taught him for a while and then Elder Blake and I taught him. Then last week he moved up with his Dad in Lenexa. So we had the missionaries up there finish the last lesson with him and
then Logan was baptized on Saturday!! :D
It was so awesome to see Logan take that next step in his life! And he has a big fear of water, so it was sweet to see him overcome that and get into the water! Then with the help of his grandpa he was baptized. And right after he came out of the water he just kind of giggled
and seemed so happy :). I love seeing the happiness that comes from people making these steps in their lives.
Even if they are terrified of the Water!
Logan is a trooper and he overcame his fear out of his sincere desire to be baptized. I hope he continues to grow in his testimony and enjoys the Lenexa Ward! And who knows maybe I will be Transferred to Lenexa one day :D

We have been having some great lessons with Ever this week and he is right on his way to be baptized on the 8th of October! He is excited for it and one of his friends will be flying up from Utah for it. Ever is such a great kid and just wants to do what is right. And I believe that him taking this next step will be an awesome example for his twin brother and family. 
They are such a great family too!

I LOVE all of the miracles that have been coming our way here in Olathe! 

We were able to give Tammy a blessing this week as well.
She has been going through a really rough time with her health but we gave her a wonderful blessing that she was very thankful for and we had the opportunity to testify of the priesthood and the power it contains. I really hope we are able to meet with her more consistently, because I know that she is ready to act on the truths of the gospel that we have shared with her.

On a tad less spiritual note, on Saturday I parked the car and got out to get the mail and as I was walking back to the car I heard this crash noise so I looked up from the mail I was holding and I see that this mini van had just backed up into our car.... So now we have a nice scratch on the back fender of our car and with church cars you have to write all of these reports if you are in an accident, so then we went and wrote a paper report and then an online report for a few hours... :D and now we will try to get everything all situated and repaired :)

On Sunday evening we went out to teach this guy. We knocked on his door 3 times and no one answered so we started walking back to our car. Then we looked up to the apartment and a guy was walking into the apartment. And we are like, "Oh he's home now, lets go get him!" So we got out of the car and knocked on the door and the guy opens the door and it is actually the friend of the guy we were to visit. I'm not sure what his name is haha, so we will call him Juan :p. So Juan lets us in and starts speaking a million miles an hour in Spanish about how he didn't read a whole lot in the Book of Mormon yet and then he sits down and starts reading a random part in the Book of Mormon and then looks at us and asks, "What does this mean??" So I'm just looking at Elder Blake like, "This guy is so drunk." And so our team-up tries to explain what he just read and then he is like, "okay"... and then flips to another page and reads a random verse again. So this went on and on for a little bit... then he ranted about how rum is made! Then he stopped talking for a moment and said, "Well you drink your Sodas, I'm gonna grab another beer!" And he gets up to go to the kitchen and I look at the member who was with us and he says, "Time to go?" "YUP!", I agreed. It was definitely time to go! Can’t teach anyone in that state. So we just stood up as he was talking and made our way to his door as he is continuing to ask us about random things in the Book of Mormon with no intent of learning anything.

We ended up getting out safe and sound :D   ….and as we left we noticed there was a big fiesta going on in the apartment next to the one we were in, and random people kept coming inside and
using Juan's bathroom!!

Coronas and Karaoke are Hispanics best friends!!
.... until they find the Gospel  :D.

So we had a pretty good week! Today we are going to try to get our insurance thing figured out with our car and then
have a great p-day :D.

I cant believe it is almost October again!
Then I'll be 20!
I'll be an old man!! ….well sort of  :D

I love and miss you guys bunches!! I send my kisses and hugs! 
I hope you and Pappa have a wonderful week! :D

Love, Your Elder Odland

Friday, September 16, 2016

Spiritual Hot Pockets

Elder Odland and Elder Blake
My new companion, Elder Blake, is from St. George, Utah! 
We were in the Mexico MTC together, so I already knew him and he was already a great friend. 
He will be going to Dixie college when he gets home from his mission. It’s great that he will live relatively close so we will be able to visit with one another from time to time.

Heavenly Father is definitely taking care of us out here.
We have been blessed so much each and every day. Some days it may take a little more effort to see the blessings, but they are always there.

I feel like my Spanish has been improving since I've been here in Olathe!
In fact, when we had dinner with the Salazar family on Saturday, she told me, "When you first got here, you only said words like 'okay' and 'Si' and now you are talking in Spanish all the time!" Speaking a new language is a bit intimidating, but now with Elder Blake as my companion, and his knowledge and proficiency of the Spanish language is about equal to mine, I'm not holding back any more! I shouldn't have held back anything before, but sometimes my inhabitations got the best of me. But not anymore :D

We had a pretty sweet week even though our appointments fell through on Monday 
we were still able to see some other people.

Tuesday was a cool day! We had stake reports, which means Elder Blake and I call each companionship 
in the zone and collect information on the situation of the investigators being taught and the 
recent converts being taught and then we compile a document of all the information. 
Then Tuesday evening we went to go see Paul. He opened the door and said he had company over and 
asked if we could schedule another time. 
So as we were scheduling another time this girl pops her head around the corner and said, 
"Hey, are you guys the missionaries from my mom's church?" 
We asked her what her mom's name was and it just so happens that her mom is in our ward and 
she said that she would love us to come visit her and teach her about her mom's church. 
She's super interested and I'm excited to begin teaching her more this week!

Another responsibility that we have as a Zone Leader is to distribute the cars to the missionaries and to also figure out their mile allotments for the month. So Wednesday we drove up to Independence to pick up a new car for the zone. We ended up getting a brand new Nissan Rogue! 
I loveeee SUVs or cars that are like my Jeep. 
I've been driving in little cars my whole mission and it felt so good to get into a bigger car again! 
It kind of made me miss my Jeep. But I don't regret, not even for a second, my decision to sell my Jeep to help pay for my mission. I know I did the right thing and I know it's what Heavenly Father wanted me to do. But it sure has been cool to drive this new Rogue around!  :D
Now we won't have it after today, we are giving it to some missionaries out in the boonies. 
They need it more than we do.

Then later that night we met a new guy that is quite interested in learning about what we believe 
and we will be going back to see him again very soon!
Then we also ran into a family that had moved here, not to long ago, from Mexico. 
They are members but have not yet made it to church. It was cool to be able to run into them and help them get situated on where the church is and help them feel more at home. 
They were happy to have met us and we look forward to visiting with them again another day!

We also had interviews with President Vest this week.
He talked to me on how I am doing and how my companion is doing. 
I also had a few questions for him :)  one of them being... if I could go to the temple with a member 
I taught in Lee's Summit. Remember Mac the Samoan, super cool guy who sure knows how to feed the missionaries!  :D    We taught him while I was serving in Lee's Summit. He was an inactive member who wanted to come back to church. Well he is now happily active and was just recently 
ordained to the Melchizedek Priesthood and will be going to the temple soon!
I've kept in contact with Mac and he has asked me to go to the temple with him. Well, now I got the green light from Pres. Vest and will be able to go with him! 
It will be awesome. I'm so excited. 
I'm not sure yet what the date will be, but I'll let you know!

Ha Ha....this is funny.... So we had a lesson with Logan this week, and we were talking about the importance of prayer. (He's just ten years old by the way) The theme of "Daily Bread" comes up and we talked about how we need to eat and partake of spiritual nutrition each day. 
He didn't understand the whole "daily bread" thing, so to make the connection I asked him, "What do you like to eat?", He said, "Hot Pockets." I replied, "Alright how do you feel after you've eaten a few hot pockets." He said, "Really Good" I answered, "Perfect! See, as you eat your body has the fuel it needs to keep going and you feel good. It's just like that with spiritual things. You can think of it like a Spiritual Hot Pocket! And Heavenly Father has stocked that freezer full of Spiritual Hot Pockets and all you need to do is grab one, heat it up and eat away. He wants us to partake of spiritual things daily."  :-D    
He got a kick out of it and so did his mom.  hahaha   
It was pretty funny.  It's fun teaching kids about the gospel!   :D

Sunday was great! Paul was able to make it to church and it was an awesome sacrament meeting. 
It was fast and testimony meeting and there were so many awesome people that bore their testimonies! 
The Spirit was so strong.
It was just what I needed and Paul also really enjoyed it!

We are seeing some great things happen here in Olathe and I'm excited to see more!

I love all of the pictures you send me throughout the week. They always brighten my day  :D.
I got the calendar you made me! It is so sweet! I have it hanging right in front of my desk. 
Thanks for filling in birthdays and holidays.

I hope all is well there in Utah.
I love and miss you guys bunches!! And I hope you have a wonderful week  :D.

Love, Your Elder Odland:)