Wednesday, March 28, 2012

"Come So Far, Go Got So Far To Go..."

(Monday - March 26, 2012)

Okay, we don't really have so far to go, just 2 weeks....2 WEEKS FROM TODAY IS MY DEPARTURE DATE!!!! WAHOO!!!

So first off, I would just like to make it known that I have created a life goal to be in the Mormon Tablernacle choir before I die! Yeah, it's going to happen! Stephanie is in it with me!

This week is really going to be a fantastic week! Let me just give you some hightlights....

First off last week, I received my invitation! I have been invited to participate in a "Special MTC Choir"!


There is going to be an MTC Choir for the Saturday Afternoon Session of this upcoming General Conference this weekend! I am in it. You I expect all who are reading this to have their DVRs set to record, and their eyes glued to the tele this Saturday Afternoon at 2:00PM MST or 4:00PM EST!!!! Keep a look out for me, and send me a quick note if you see me! ;) I am so excited! I can hardly contain myself! What an amazing experience it is going to be! And we have some pretty powerful songs lined up! It is going to be a sight! What is better than 300 of the Lord's servants bearing testimony through song for everyone around the world to see! It will be amazing...anywho....back to this week!...

So this week is going to be fantastic because:

1) We have choir practice every single morning to prepare for this weekend, plus twice tomorrow because I think there are people coming to hear us and make sure we are all ready.

2) We are hosting this week!!!! I've been waiting for this since like week 2! Ha! We get to stand out on the curb and pry little newbies/greenies away from their weeping mothers, and carry their 50 lb luggage up tons of stairs and initiate them into missionary life! It's going to be a blast! I can't wait! And apparently this is the week David Archuletta is supposed to come! Ha! Wouldn't that be cool to pick him up! Apparently someone in our district knows someone who works here and they can look up all the info on the missionaries and so we have all the deets on him. What building he is staying in, when he leaves, ect. It's great! I guess he is supposed to be here for 3 weeks and then go to the Peru MTC or something like that...who knows!

3) WE GET TRAVEL PLANS THIS WEEK!!!!! Well, travel plans are supposed to come, whether we get them will depend on our visas. I guess we will find out this week if we have our visas or not. If not, it won't be another 2 weeks, till our "departure date" that we are reassigned. Those in our district going to North Carolina should at least get them this week. I have been waiting for this week since week 1 and it's here!!!

4) General Conference of course! I get to sing and get out of Provo, and into beautiful Salt Lake which I love so much and go to General Conference which is the best time of the year. Plus I'm singing, and then I get to sing, and see the prophet and all that grand stuff! :) So pumped!!!

So this past week we had the awesome pleasure of hearing from Elder Oaks and his wife! He talk was a live broadcast to all the MTCs around the world. It was really good, and his wife is so sweet. While we were practicing for choir that night (I don't know if I told you but choir sings every Tuesdays at devotionals) and we saw people setting things up. They had this chair up to the podium testing height and stuff and we thought, Oh Pres. Packer is coming to speak to us, cause you know he has to stay seated when he speaks in conference and such. Well, when the Oaks walked in, we were surprised! Apparently Sister Oaks was recovering from foot surgery and so she had the chair while she spoke. It a nice evening!

So our zone leaders got reassigned last week since their visas weren't coming through, so yesterday we had to do some leadership rearranging. Our district leader and his companion were called as the new Zone leaders and I was called as the new district leader for our district. So that happened! I'm not sure how I feel abou it. I'm kind of nervous and I hope everything goes well. It shouldn't be too bad since we only have 2 weeks left, but we have a crazy district! Wish me luck?

So how is the U-Verse treating everyone!?!? Sounds like Cole is lovin it!

Yay for tax returns! Thanks for doing that Dad! I appreciate it!

I'm super jealous that dad and Alex are now hometeachers to Miss Linda! Tell her Elder Dayne (That's how she should know me! )says hi!

So yeah, our teacher told us about the earthquake in Mexico! It was close to where he served and close to where the other Elders in our district are going. He said there was like no damage or deaths though which is good!

I'm glad you received a call from Aunt Melanie and Aunt Suzette! Yeah, we were just in the Celestial room ready to leave and I look up and see what looked like Uncle John and Aunt Melanie leaving. So I rush and grab them and we were able to talk for a bit! It was so good to talk to them and see someone I knew! It made me really happy! And then yesterday on our Temple I run into Brooke Wolfgram and I we say hi and talk for a bit and then say bye. Then she comes back and says she has some people who want to say hi! It was fun saying hi to them for a few seconds! It's great how you always see people you know at the temple!

I'm sorry to hear about Cole's derby race! What a trooper though! You will have to email me a picture of the car!
Alex, that is great to hear that your friend is interested in the Book of Mormon! I have some advice! Every year of high school at Christmas I gave away copies of the Book of Mormon to friends with a little letter and a note explaining what is was and how special it was to me. However, I just gave it to them and never followed up or asked them about it. Last yeah, I did follow up! I gave one to Hannah, and followed up and asked her about it and we ended up meeting with the missionaries for visit or two. And as missionaries we are always told to follow up on commitments and how important that is. So I invite you to not do as I did and just never bring it up, but follow up on his reading and what he thinks and if he has any questions you could answer. And if you can't answer questions, tell him you'll get back with him and go home and ask someone or find the answer! What a great missionary opportunity! Keep me updated on how things go!

Thanks for the stories this week mom and dad! I especially liked the story of the translation of the Book of Mormon in Afrikaans and the "Then I'll be Happy". A worked was actaully telling some of us missionaries that same translation story today. And the "Then I'll be happy"...I can totes relate! That story is my life! Ha! When I have a hard day or things aren't going well with my comp, I just think 2 more weeks and then I'll have a change of everything. But, I'm sure I'll miss the MTC and wish I could go back. I'm going to make these last 2 weeks count!

So apparently the Sunday after conference we are having a special fast sunday since it is Easter Sunday. We are told we are having a MTC wide sacrament meeting and a General Authority is coming! It should be good! I'm excited!
Well, that's all I got for now! Don't forget: General Conference. Saturday Afternoon Session. MTC Choir. Me.
I love and miss you all!
¡Yo sè que vive me Señor!

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Joyner!

Sorry, I've been slacking on the quotes! I've had them, I just for get to send them: Here is the make up for the past few weeks!
"My Strength is as the strength of ten, because my heart is pure!" -- Alfred Lord Tenneyson

"Dare to be a Mormon;
Dare to Stand alone.
Dare to have a purpose firm;
Dare to make it know."
--Old Primary song

"All men will certify by their actions, what they truly believe." --Brigham Young

"We are never tired so long as we can see far enough!" --Ralph Waldo Emerson

"I made this my [rule?] (sorry, I'm paraphrasing), when the Lord commands, do it!" --Joseph Smith

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

"Bring Him Home...."

¡Hola Mi Familia!

I hope this week's email finds you all well! This week has gone by fairly quicker than last weeks, but still kind of slow....I don't have a lot of report on this past week, but I hope to fill up the remainder of this email with somethings that have been on my mind.

So last week, I broke out! Yes! We had an escort come pick us up (just an elderly volunteer in his hot ride town car!...HA!) and we left the MTC campus and on to the mall! :) It was kind of fun I guess, quite short. I didn't feel as much freedom as I thought I would...oh well...

Now concerning the shoes, Mom, I would go today, but my companion has to go to therapy. Since he has had the bad migranes, the clinic suggested he go to some tension therapy to help, so today we are going to the BYU Health Clinic for his therapy and won't have time to do anything else. But I will be sure to schedule another trip as soon as possible! And we can't go to Nordstroms...don't you remember me telling you a few months ago that it was closing in February...yeah sad day! As we passed by on our way to Mr. Mac and I saw it all boarded up I shed a tear! So sad!

So Thanks for the package everyone! I enjoyed my St. Patty's day explosion! Also thanks for the cookies from the Bookstore, Mom and the cinch and calling card as well! I think I'm good on food for the remaining 3 weeks. This week I was thrilled; I received a package from the Haslems with bunch of good things including cliff bars--which I have never had before, but I decided that they are really good and I really like them! Aidan and Ava colored pictures for me which I enjoyed and Debbie wrote me a letter as well as Josh! Josh's letter was so great! He gave me 9 suggestions on what he thinks makes a great missionary. It was such great advice and I was really happy to receive it! Thanks guys!

Shocking discovery! You know those Nature Sunshine immunity boosters you sent? Well they have been really good! I was just sitting around one day waiting for class or something and I read the ingredients. You won't believe what is in them....2 TYPES OF MUSHROOMS!!!!! I about screemed! HA! Quite surprising, but no wonder they don't taste good going down. They must be doing some good so I am still taking them, but I was surprised! (For those who don't know, I don't lik mushrooms...)

So last week at the Temple we switched it up a bit! We decided to do initiatories instead of a session. It was kind of nice to go through that again and remember what it was like when I went through the temple. It only took about an hour, but it was really good. Neat fact: the last time we went, they had the chapel closed because apparently some Italian artist is doing a mural in there. That would be nice if it was done while we were still here, but who knows! We will just have to see....

Dad, you've got me really interested in that Doctrines of Salvation book you were talking about! I would really like to read it sometime!

The weather here has been bi-polar....the past 2 weeks or so, it has been so nice in the low-mid 60s! Oh it has been so wonderful! However, just yesterday, it snowed all day! Imagine that! Well, it was more like a rain/snow; nothing really stuck, but yeah, that was all day yesterday...

Good luck with all your pinewood derbying Cole! I hope it goes well if you have another chance to race! Thanks for your notes! I hope soccer is going well for you and that you are having fun! I remember when I played soccer! I had a blast! Mom will have to send me pictures!

Alex taking guitar lessons....nice! I hope you are a pro by the time I get back so I can have an instrumentalist when I make it big! ;) And I thought OYP was doing "Snoopy" this month, not in the summer....they already had it cast and everything during Legally Blonde....hmm...

Speaking of....does anyone know how they did at Competition this year!?

That's pretty awesome that they are shooting a Clint Eastwood movie in Athens! That is intense! You will have to keep it on the radar and find out what it is about.

Happy Birthday to all the Birthday people this past week. Especially Papa! I was thinking about you, and hope you have a great day!

I enjoyed this mission stories this week, Mom! Thanks for sending them! I enjoy reading them!

WE'RE SINGING IN GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!! I'm not sure if it is Priesthood or the special Saturday afternoon choir, but we are singing! I should find out more info this week. They had all those in choir fill out a slip that said "Special choir survey" to narrow those down who can really sing and it said to not complete it if you won't be here for up to April 1. Plus one of the directors let the words "General conference" slip out! I would almost say that it is the Saturday Afternoon since they had the Sisters fill it out too! So, when I get more info I will let you know so you can look for me! How awesome is that!?!

I don't know if I told you about the Argentines in our Zone and having problems with Visas. Three got their visas this week and have left, and now there are just 4 waiting. This will be their 11th week...crazy! I would go mental! Another district in our zone who is going to Mexico was suppposed to leave this week, but again with the visas, only one is going. They were told that they are being reassigned for the time being until they get their visas. That may be us in a few weeks. I think we are supposed to get our travel plans this week, but probably only the 3 going to North Carolina will since they are in the states and the rest of us are going to Mexico. We will see though... Next week should be fun! We should get to host new missionaries! You know, pick them up on the curb carry their luggage around, show them where their class is, and all that fun stuff! We are the big kids on campus now! It feels good! :)

Now to my more thoughtful part.

This week, in my scripture study, I found 2 passages I would like to share. The first is in Mosiah 7:32 (I think that's the verse...). It says something like : Turn to the Lord and put your trust in him and serve him will all diligence and he will bless you according to His will! I love that! It is so great AND applies to missionaries as well!

The 2nd scripture is in the next chapter: Mosiah 8:18. It goes something like "God provided means that through their faith, they might work might miracles!" That is so great! Our sacrament meeting was on faith yesterday! I love the topic of faith it is so important! With faith we can do all things! Including moving mountains and parting seas, IF that is God's will! It is all according to our faith and God's will!

What have you found in your personal study this week?

So I want to testify on personal scripture study! I didn't really do serious personal scripture study until my senior year of high school. Before then, I just read scriptures on my phone like before going to bed and I would just read a few verses to say I did it. Well, I changed that senior year! I seriously read and studied for more than 5 minutes and it made ALL the difference in my life! Scripture study has helped me withstand temptation from the adversary and it was just brought the Spirit more into my life. I think my testimony has really grown this last year, because I started a serious study of the scriptures! I have come to really LOVE the Book of Mormon! It has such wonderful messages for each of us at all times of our lives. But, like Pres. Benson says, it is OUR job to seek out those messages and not think they will just come to us. Studying and reading the scriptures as a family is great, but we need even more! We need to study them on our own and receive our own personal revelation. I know and have seen how personally studying scriptures has changed my life! I encourage and invite all who read this to personally study the scriptures. If you don't already, start now! Start tonight! There is no time like the present! Being the missionary I am, I would like to make a committment: Will you all read and study the scriptures for at least 15 minutes a day to receive personal revelation and inspiration in your lives? 15 minutes really isn't that much--it's like only a chapter a day--you just have to make the effort to make time for it. I promise that if you do this, your testimony will grow exponetially and that you will come closer to the Savior and our Heavenly Father!

Now getting to my "Subject line"being the nerd that I am, I'm going to relate Musical Theatre to the Gospel and to missionary work! "Bring Him Home"! I think Alain Boubil and Claude Michele-Schonberg wrote this song as a missionary's prayer. Like it says in the Hymn "Brightly Beams Our Father's Mercy", there is a strugglying, wandering sea-man out there, infact there are many, waiting for us Missionaries to come help them be rescued and saved--to "Bring Them Home". Before we came to this earth, we knew and were taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ. However, passing through the veil, we have forgotten it for a time. It is our job as missionaries and members to go out and remind people of what they already know and have learned before: The Gospel of Jesus Christ. We are going out there to "Bring Them Home" to the Gospel. This song is a missionary's prayer asking God to give their investigator "rest" because "He is young, he's afraid" at what those around Him might think of him as for turning to the Gospel. "Bring him peace, bring him joy, He is young (in the Gospel), he is only a boy! You can take, you can give, let him live...bring him home, bring him home...." Not only is it the missionaries who are responsible to bring the Gospel throught the world, but the members too! Members play such an important role in missionary work! You can suggest people for the missionaries to teach and you can help teach with the missionaries in sharing your testimonies during lessons with investigators! Missionary work is so amazing! I encourage and invite you all to help the full-time missionaries in your area in any way you can! Even if it is just referring a friend or offering a meal! I know you will be blessed and those missionaries will be thankful!

Missionary work is the greatest! I love it! I love and miss you all LOTS!!!! Keep the letters coming, I love them!

¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor!

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Joyner

Monday, March 12, 2012

"For Real Though, Imagine How It Would Feel Going Real Slow..."

EH! So that line from "In The Heights" was taken out of context, but I am using it to apply to my situation--cause that is what missionaries - do they take the doctrine and apply it to others to share the gospel...anyway....

This week has dragged on FOREVER!!!! I think with Jared and Wesley leaving this past week, and then we have a district in our Zone who is leaving this week, I am just starting to get antsy and am ready to go! Don't get me wrong I love it here  and I'm sure I will miss it when I get out into the field! But Hey! 1 MONTH DOWN!!!!! 1 to go, and 23 to go! It has really gone by quite quickly. I just think it could hurry up a bit.....but hey! This is our week 6 (the MTC counts the first 3 days as week one so in actuality it is week 5 of 9, but here they call it 6 of 10) and only 4 to go!

Thanks for the card everyone! I'm glad I could be apart of your Family Home Evening! I enjoyed the missionary quotes and want to get them laminated! Thanks for the stamps as well!

Haha! So funny thing! Mom, do you remember telling me about how Elder Crandall was talking about the cereal tower challenge...Haha! Well, our zone tried to do that! Each district picked a tower of cereal to try and down before they could refill them. It wasn't really appealing to me so I just ate a regular lunch while everyone else was loading up their trays with 5-6 bowls of cereal! Well, a food manager person came out and told us that this was not allowed! Apparently they told us on the first day in our orientation that food contests are not allowed. I guess no one in our zone really payed attention or remembered that tidbit. Haha! So everyone was left eating their 6 bowls of cereal with no objective! Ha!

So at the beginning of this week I had a relapse of my cold. For 2-3 days, it wasn't fun! All good now....I think.

In response to a letter I wrote David a week or so ago. It sounds like he is doing well! He has a baptism at the end of this month!

So thanks for the cinnamon rolls mom! When I decided to share with everyone, they were gone soo fast! And everyone LOVED them! I think my food supply is getting low, so if you wanted to send some food I won't be opposed. Just not all candy! I'm gaining weight from doing nothing but sitting all day, so I need Cinch fast so I can get rid of it!

To answer your question about dear elder dad, we get dear elders the same day as long as you have it in by 12PM noon Utah time! So like 2 PM your time!

Uh! Day light savings time was such a difficult adjustment...I'm still trying to recover!

Rumor has it David Archuleta enters the MTC in a few weeks...!?!? :)

So this week was especially not so good because my comp got really bad migranes Friday and Saturday which forced him to stay in bed most of the day Friday and all day Saturday. It was fun for the first little bit and then I started to get stir-crazy and wanted to get out of that room! It was difficult finding things to do while he slept sometimes....but we made it through and it is all good!

So today we are leaving the campus! Yup! That's right! We are going to Mr. Mac to exchange my shoes! I get to go out into the real world for a bit! Yay!!!!

One quick story before I have to go! So our teachers make up investigators for us to teach and they are based on people they taught in their missions. Well, Nate (my RA and now teacher) based his investigator off of a guy he taught and baptized named Noe (pronouced NO-EH [NO-WAY] in spanish meaning Noah). Apparently he talked to Noe's friend Elvys, who helped introduce Noe to the missionaries, in December and he said Noe had been drinking again (he had a bad drinking problem before he was baptized). Well, Nate said he talked to the real Noe a few weeks ago and said he got his life back together and Noe was able to baptize one of his friends. He said he got his life in order about 4-5 weeks ago. If you think what was happening then: we were just entering the MTC and were introduced to our investigator Noe. Over the past few weeks we have prepared lesson to teach Noe and we taught him about the Word of Wisdom and prayed for his drinking problem. Little did we know that our prayers and lessons for our "investigator" Noe was in actuality helping the real Noe who lived the East Coast! Itsn't that amazing! The Lord works miracles in wonderful ways!

I love this Gospel and the chance I have to serve the Lord and to change lives! I love being a missionary and there is no place I would rather be right now!

I love and miss you all dearly!

¡Yo que sé vive mi Señor!

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Joyner

Monday, March 5, 2012

"To Dream The Impossible Dream....."

Subject know the drill...

¡Hola Mi Familia!

What a week! Let me just tell you! I'm just going to jump right in!

So our Devotional speaker on Tuesday was....drumroll.....ELDER JEFFREY R. HOLLAND OF THE QUORUM OF THE 12!!!! How awesome is that!?!?! Ah! It was such an amazing devotional! For choir that night we sang "Come Thou Fount" (a different arrangement than Mac Wilberg...not as good :/  ) and usually they put up on the screens who is speaking that night, but they didn't and so I just knew it was going to be someone special! And when he walked in! Ah! It was so amazing! He was very straight forward and blunt like always! He doesn't sweeten things up at all--just says it like it is, but that's great! He talked about becoming converted to the Gospel and how that is the whole purpose of Preach My Gospel is to convert the missionaries so they can then know how to teach and convert the investigadores (sorry, that was spanish, but I'm forgetting how to spell in English sometimes...crazy!). He also talked about being a missionary after we get back home and not going back to old life-styles, but having our mission change us for the better! It was so amazing and so good! It was wonderful to hear from an Apostle of the Lord and to have it be ELDER HOLLAND...ah! He is one of my favs!

Well one word really describes this week: SNOW! It snowed quite a few days this week! Not a lot any of those days and it is already melted now, but still it snowed for quite a few!
To respond to some things:

Dad, I'm not sure what Large group meetings are....If we have them, they don't call them that. We had mission conference yesterday for Fast Sunday if that is similar...?

The TRC or Teaching Resource Center is what I volunteered with last semester. Basically, members just come volunteer and missionaries get the opportunity to teach lessons to members! It was quite fun actually! The past 2 times we have gotten this really sweet sister from Mexico who loves to talk to us and she helps us with spanish (and says things in English if we don't understand...shhh...don't tell!). She is really sweet and it is fun teaching and talking with her! We go to TRC once a week!

Ummm...Okay...Mom, you don't know how excited I was to hear from your 1st letter of the week that Ms. Linda had been baptized! Uh! It just makes me so happy! When I went out with Elders to teach, I could just really see how ready she was to be baptized, but she was just holding back for some reason and I thought it would be a while before she consented, but thank heavens she did! I hope Elder Self was there to see it, but he probably wasn't huh? But, that makes me really happy! :)

I just want to brag on some people who made my week! Thanks for the letters from: The Hobbs, Aunt Sally, Aunt Debbie, Aunt Melon, Aunt Glenda, Stephanie, Grandma and Papa, Princess!, Valerie Perschka, my BYU buds Carrie and Casey, Sister Grant, Cole and of course my wonderful parents (I hope I'm not leaving anyone out)! Thanks for the letter! I love them! Keep em coming!

So I've been thinking....Missionary life-style really isn't that hard! Like I don't even miss facebook or my phone or any of those worldly things like at all! It weird, but great at the same time! I saw a district presidency member with an iPhone and was trying to remember what it was like to hold one...I couldn't remember...that's okay! I can't imagine what technological advances will take place in the next 2 years! Maybe DVDs will be in the past and it will only be Blu-ray....who knows! The thing I only really miss most is my musicals, my showtunes! I LOVE MY SHOW TUNES!!!!
So the last 2 days have been sad! Last night I had to say goodbye to Jared. He left early this morning for Nicaragua! It was easier since we already said goodbye before we left for our missions, but that much hard since we didn't think we would see each other, but we did! Wesley leaves tomorrow morning, so I get to see him tonight! We all spent an hour just talking last night! It was sad! I will miss them! It will feel so lonely here know they aren't around and that I won't be able to see familiar faces on Sundays. But C'est La Vie! (That was French, not Spanish ;)  )

Now getting to last night!!!! Our Fireside last night was ALEX BOYÉ!!!! For those who don't know him, he is an African-American LDS recording artist from London who also sings in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! It was so amazing! I have always loved him and it was great to have him be our fireside last night! He sounded amazing as always, but was also so inspirational and uplifting, which is what I really needed this week! He talked about his conversion, and then went into how important our jobs as missionaries are. Some points he made that stuck out to me were:

"There is ALWAYS something positive to say about our situation no matter how horrible or hard it may be."
"The Lord has given us the power to think and to dream as big as we want--that's free agency!"

He sang "Our Savior's Love" and "How Great Thou Art"! He really put a new perspective on things for me. I don't know why God has us go through some experiences, why we "Dream the Impossible Dream", and why things turn out they way they do. What sucks is we usually don't find out till later what the reason was, but I know that God has a plan for me and he knows what I need. Just by that one fireside, my perspective about my future has changed. I loved the thought of what he does as a career. He sings! He sings hymns of praise and inspirtation and goes around doing firesides. He brings the Spirit to the lives of other! That's what I want to do with my life! I may not make it as a recording artist...we will just have to see...but I know I always want to be a missionary and l bless the lives of those around me!

I'm so thankful for this Gospel and for the opportunity I have to be a missionary! I love being a missionary and missionary work! It is the greatest! There is no other place I would rather be right now than here and in the Service of my God!

A quick thought from my personal study: I've been reading "Jesus The Christ" and one part is talks about the magnitude of the Savior and His name! Everyone knows how great and powerful the Savior's name is. Even those that defile it and mis-use know of the power of his name! What an amazing thought! Also, In 2 Nephi 9:20--it states that God knows all things and there is not anything save He knows it! It's that just great! Do you all have any personal insight from your studies?

Thanks for the quotes and scriptures mom and dad!

Dad: "If I have 3 hours to chop down a tree, I will spend 2 hours sharpening the ax!" --Benjamin Franklin

I love and miss you all so much!

Thanks for your love and support!

¡Yo Se que vive mi Señor!

Con Mucho Amor,
Elder Joyner! :)

Friday, March 2, 2012

"A Person Can Develop A Cold..."

Monday, February 27, 2012

Musical reference anyone....!?!?!

Well, the subject line pretty much explains the week. I'm sick! As well as most of our district.
Well, I said not much happened this week, but I did have a few experiences I want to share with you! First off: Last Sunday! (This is a good story!) So last sunday evening at our Devotional with all the missionaries, I had seen Jared earlier in the day at choir, but hadn't seen Wesley for the longest time! A week at the very least! (They are both shipping out a week from tomorrow btdubs, then I will be left alone :( ) So I really wanted to see him and just be able to see a familiar face and someone I knew. So I said a little prayer and asked Heavenly Father if it was possible that I could see Wesley and give him a hug because I had't seen him in a while and just wanted to see a familiar face! Well, I didn't really think too much of the prayer. After all, I was asking for something small and not too important. Well, that night we had films and watch "The Testaments" and I didn't see him there that night. So I thought, oh well! I tried! Well, the next morning after breakfast, we were walking down the hall to get ready for the temple and who do I see!?! None other than Elder Wesely Curtin! I was able to give him a hug and quickly say hi before we both had to be on our ways. But it was so good to see him! Moral of the story: God DOES answer prayers! Even the smallest most seemingly insignificant ones! And He does it in HIS timing too!

Next experience:

I think it was on Tuesday, we were planning to teach a new investigator and had this lesson all planned out and ready and at the last minute our other teacher shows up and tells us that we were actually teaching our same investigator we had been teaching. So with about 5-10 minutes notice, we had to quickly change all of our lesson plans and quickly come up with something to teach our progressing investigator. I don't remember what it was we planned. I think we taught the Sabbath day...yeah that sounds right! Well, we felt quite unprepared and so we said a little prayer before going in like we always do asking for the Spirit to be with us and that we would be able to do a decent job.Well, we go in and sit down and suddenly all my feelings of fear for not being prepared went away! As we taught, I felt like I was communicating in Spanish quite easily and that he was understanding the things we were teaching. It was the most amazing feeling! I was speaking probably better than I had up to that point! I could definitely feel the Spirit in that lesson and I knew that God was with us and helping us by putting words into our mouths! It was so great!

We also had our first TRC (Teaching Resource Center) visit this week. We went in and had two 20 minute lessons in spanish with members who come in and volunteer! I was really great and a lot of fun! Spanish is fun....sometimes...Ha!

Our film last night after devotional was "Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration". I don't know if you know this, but the church sort of re-edited it and put it on like or whatever. It seemed more investigator friendly. I liked the cut they had at the Joseph Smith building, but I was still good! My testimony of the Prophet grows everytime I watch it!

So we were told in a devotional a few weeks back to make our family apart of our mission--which is how it should be! So I decided that I am going to start a study and anyone who wants to join in it with me can, and we can discuss insights we receive during our studies. I have been reading the New Testament and studying the life of Christ! It has been a really amazing experience! I have also been reading in the Book of Mormon! Ah! I LOVE the Book of Mormon! It is such an amazing book of scripture and I just get so excited to read it! One insight I had in my studying this week was the passage in 1st Nephi where it talks about "by small means the Lord brings about great things!" (Similar to Ether 12:27). I also read Nephi's Psalm in 2nd Nephi! Ah! I LOVE that passage of scripture! It is so beautiful and really explains the feelings of my heart! Any insights from your personal readings you want to share?

Well, that's about all I got! We are going to the temple today which I am so pumped about! I LOVE going to the temple!
Love you all!

Yo sé que vive mi Señor!

Con Mucho Amor,
Elder Joyner