"Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever."
-- Alma 26:12

Monday, October 24, 2011

Still in B-Ridge!!!

So Family,
As you can guess, I am still in Buffalo Ridge, for which I am super grateful. The thing is, Elder Washburn is no longer here. He was made a Zone Leader for the Loveland Zone. So my new companion is Elder McKay. He has been out for 1 transfer longer than me, so we're both pretty much greenies. But, he has led the mission in baptisms ever since he's been out. The guy is a stud. He is from Louisiana and he went to BYU the year before me and for part of the year I went. He has been serving in Westminster until now, and now he's district leader for our district. I'm super excited to have a companion who loves the work and is doing it to the fullest extent he can. I'm really grateful to have him for a companion and to get to know him better. So we moved to Bobbie Estes's house, a pink house down the hill. Here the members usually only sign up for 3 month periods to house the missionaries, so we moved from the Wilzbachs. It is a good living situation.

Thank you very much for the packages this week. I really appreciated the facemask. Elder Washburn took the other one, for which he was very grateful. I'm sure I'll be using it this week since the weather is set to snow tomorrow and Wednesday at least 20 inches.

So this week was great. First off, Todd was baptized, confirmed, and ordained a priest. I was the one who got to baptize him, it was nerve-wracking, but I was very grateful for the opportunity to do so. I had to get those white pants wet at some point, right? His baptism was great, Trudee's family came into town for it from Ogden, and he was confirmed by Elder Washburn. He was ordained by Bishop Thad Brown, who is so awesome. I was just really grateful the whole time in all three of those situations for the opportunity I had to be a part of Todd's conversion and be there as he chose this wonderful path for himself, but mostly for his family.

We taught Jess yesterday, and it was a great lesson. First off, Brian told us that he's realized by reading Alma 32 with Jess, that for Taycee (their daughter) to be raised like he was that he and Jess need to be involved fully and commited to the church. He knows this is what he needs to do. I told Jess that I was pretty sure she knew she needed to be baptized as well, and she said that yes she knows that. We asked them what a realistic goal would be for them to get to the end goal, and they both agreed to give up drinking! Yes! Also, towards the end of the lesson, we asked them to pray about and talk about a date where she could be baptized and where he could receive the Melchizedek priesthood. They said they would do that, and we're kind of taking this approach because we don't know just yet how to handle bringing up the fact that they need to be married. But she's going to get baptized, it's only a matter of when.

Spencer. Oh, Spencer. We had the most frustrating lesson of my life with Spencer this week. He kept going in circles around how he didn't know how to get answers. Then when we explained that, he would say, "Well why should I limit myself to only asking this God if he's there? What if another God is the true God?" Well, needless to say, my brain blew up, and I was frustrated that he was complicating a very simple and sweet gospel, and Bro. Robertson (the YM pres and C130 pilot) just told him plainly that the message he was hearing from Spencer the whole time was: "I'm not going to do this stupid thing you guys are asking me to do". Well, we committed him to ask again, if God was there and if what we were teaching was true. I hate to think of it, but I was considering after the lesson, how many more lessons like this would it take for us to say that we are wasting our time teaching him anymore. It was just kind of a rough day.

We have quite a bit going on in this area, and I am excited to be able to learn from and work with Elder McKay. I think he's awesome and I think he'll teach me a lot about being a good and powerful missionary. We'll meet with Gregg Bailey tomorrow, and a couple other potentials this week. I'm excited about the future for this area and I know that by doing work, we will be able to see miracles happen. Faith, and trust in God, combined with work is the recipe for miracles in God's kingdom. No doubt about it. I was reading this week in Helaman 10. There are some great lessons in this chapter about obedience. Nephi was tired, exhausted, and probably sad about the wickedness of the people. He was on his way to his home. And God told him he needed to go and declare repentance to this people. And it says, "And behold, now it came to pass that when the Lord had spoken these words unto Nephi, he did stop and did not go unto his own house, but did return unto the multitudes...and he did go forth in the Spirit...declaring the word of God, even until he had declared it unto them all." Nephi's obedience here is amazing. It is immediate obedience, it is exact obedience, and it is whole-hearted obedience. I think we can all learn from his example, and it really reminded me of Elder Alonso's talk in Conference. Do the right thing, at the right time, without delay. I need to work on my obedience. I try to be good in obeying, but I need to do it immediately, exactly, and whole-heartedly. It was a good lesson for me to learn this week.

Anyway, I love you all. I really appreciate the letters, the emails, the prayers, the love, and the support. It means the world to me. I couldn't do this work without you.

Elder Logan Bryan

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