Monday, February 29, 2016

Week 28

AREA: Benson, AZ
COMPANION: Elder Rasmussen

Monday: Typical p-day... Didn't do anything too special. After all our
normal pday stuff we gave a sister in our district a blessing.

Tuesday: Today was alright... We did a lot of service at Barney's. I
helped fix an old tractor and then watched Brother Barney almost kill
himself moving some dirt with it. He is in his late 60's and took that
thing up a huge hill and started moving some dirt. Blows my mind how
active he is at his age. After dinner we gave Sister Kitelinger a
blessing because of some surgery she had.

Wednesday: This week is Zone conference so we didn't have district
meeting today. Since we're having zone conference on Thursday we
usually do service for Barney, so we went over there for alittle and
then went over to Tim's to check on how he is doing. Ended up helping
him set up an exercise machine and cleaning out his back. We talked
about the gospel with him some which was good. Tim is a very nice guy
and I wish things would go somewhere with him... But Idk if things
will. We had a great lesson with Merideth a less active, talked about
the addiction recovery program some and the atonement.

Thursday: Zone conference was today, really was an amazing conference
and I got a lot out of it. It was very long but it was as long as
expected... 10-3. Can't wait to apply the stuff I learned into my
teaching. We had dinner at bishop prices house and then went to the
Kitelingers to teach Richard (the nonmember husband) the restoration.
The lesson was okay... It's hard to teach a good lesson when there are
3 kids jumping around all over the place. We then quickly drove over
to Kristina and Richards for a lesson on the Word of Wisdom and answer
some questions she had on the Fall of Adam.

Friday: Weekly planning practically all day... Our lesson with Dianne
got rescheduled for next week so that was too bad.

Saturday: Happy Birthday to me:) Today I turned 20 years old:) This
morning I got to open presents :) got some cards from some people
which was really nice:) Opened the present Savannah gave me that is
totally sick! Decorated a box all cute, made a banner of light art
photography that says I love you, got me a jack Johnson Guitar book,
and a pillow case that says one of my favorite quotes:) super
awesome:) Best girlfriend ever:) She also got me some cupcakes with 20
candles. After doing all that stuff we got focused on mission stuff...
We went and tried to go see a bunch of people but nobody was home or
didn't want to see us. We did schedule some appointments which was
good...  For dinner tonight the Hornes brought us to Sierra Vista for
Texas Roadhouse for my birthday. Elder Rasmussen was really looking
forward to me sitting on the saddle and getting embarrassed in front
of the whole restaurant but the saddle was broken so I couldn't haha
The whole place just did the whole YEE HAA thing... It was fun.

Sunday: It was okay... Church is still really long... 6 hours. But
today in 1st sacrament meeting a return missionary gave an amazing
talk on the atonement. Our investigator Kristina was at church and
loved it and came up to us and said, "that talk made me want to like
get baptized right now..." That was pretty amazing:) hopefully we can
talk about baptismal dates next time we go over to their house:) other
than that today was pretty normal...

This week I would like to bear my testimony on the importance of
reading The Book of Mormon and prayer. I have challenged myself this
week during my personal study to read atleast 1 chapter of The Book of
Mormon as preparation for lessons. By doing this and starting with a
sincere prayer my studies have been a lot more productive. Not only
have they been more productive but I have a stronger testimony of the
importance of reading The Book of Mormon and prayer. They're two
simple things that we should do everyday, and by doing it we can come
closer to our Heavenly Father. I know The Book of Mormon is the word
of God.... I testify of that. I have prayed about it countless times
and not once ever had answer telling me that it isn't true. The Book
of Mormon is evidence you can hold in your hand and read that this is
the true church. I love this gospel and I love sharing it with people.

Love you all!! Have a great week. Thanks for all the love and prayers:)


Elder Smith


Monday, February 22, 2016

Week 27

AREA: Benson, AZ
COMPANION: Elder Rasmussen

Monday: Pday was pretty good. Went to the zone sports which was pretty
fun to be around the zone. Today was the last day of transfers so we
all said our goodbyes to the people leaving the zone. We didnt have a
dinner tonight so we went to McDonald's and Taco Bell. Elder Rasmussen
really likes eating Taco Bell so he went their and I got McDonald's.
After eating we went over to the Carruthers house to hang out. They're
a super cool family I'll have to get a picture with sometime.

Tuesday: Even though we weren't getting transferred to new areas we
still had to help out with them. Our old zone leader Elder Whittle
didn't need to be at the transfer site till like 2:00 and his comp.
Elder Ruiz had to be their at 8:00 to pick up his. So Elder Whittle
spent the morning with us. We went and did some service at Brother
Barney's again which was pretty good. After service we went home to
change and then had dinner. Rest of the night was pretty boring. We
didn't do much.

Wednesday: Felt pretty good today, woke up this morning and worked out
for the first time in a long time, did studies, and really got a lot
out of my studies today. District meeting was alright... It was on
working with members more efficiently. We talk about this a lot I feel
like and it was more of a friendly reminder on using members to help
you find people. After district meeting we had some great Mexican
food,  went to Harold and Jose's place to read and maybe share a
lesson but Harold wasn't home. Read with Jose and he told us that
Harold thinks we're possessed by the devil or something so I don't
know if we're going to be teaching him anymore... While we were there
someone had there room searched by the police. After his place we went
to the church to better prepare ourselves for our lesson with
Kristina. Went to dinner and then went over to her place. Went great,
a member in the ward came to the lesson, we taught the restoration
again just cause it's been awhile. After the lesson we drove home for
the night to find our trailer fill with flies. Probably killed about
30 of them with the fly swatter... The rat in the wall I guess is
making a great meal for some flies.

Thursday: Today was alright. This morning we read with Aaron, were
almost done with the doctrine of covenants. After that we had service
again at Brother Barney's. After service we came home and changed,
talked with the garner's for a little, went to dinner, and then had a
lesson at the Kitelingers. We showed a Mormon message on the 10
commandments and discussed it some more. The Kitelingers are a part
member family and we are coming back over next week to teach the
restoration to Richard the husband:) New investigator:)

Friday 2/19/2016!!: 6 months down! 1/4 of my mission is done... Can't
believe it... feels like yesterday I went into the MTC. Today was a
pretty good day, this morning I worked out again:) I want to go on
runs but Elder Rasmussen can't because of his knees so I run back and
forth from the members house to the chicken coupe... Haha kinda looks
stupid but if you do that about 20 times it equals a half mile. Weekly
planning was today as usual, went pretty well. We stayed pretty
focused and was able talk about every person we want to see and make
plans for them before our lesson at 3:00.  We have 25 people were
currently attempting/are working with. Our lesson with Dianne at 3
went really well. We just read from the Book of Mormon and discussed
it. Next time we go over were teaching the restoration:) We had dinner
then went over to Kristina and Richards and watched Meet the Mormons.
That was great, Kristina really seemed to really enjoy it and she
almost cried a few times:) Really wish they could get married so she
could get baptized... Hopefully they get married soon:)

Saturday: Felt good today:) worked out again:) getting in shape so I
can continue to fit into my suits... This morning we got to drive to
Tucson for a doctors appointment. That went pretty well... The doc
diagnosed me officially with ADHD and anxiety. You all probably
already noticed I had ADHD though squirrel! Haha hopefully he will be
able to help me out. After the appointment we got lunch then went to
the Broadbent's to say hi. It was nice to go back and visit my old
place:)  we drove home and Brother Barney called us to try and fix his
internet... Got the fixed, went to dinner, and then went home to
burn:) for those of you who don't know, mission tradition is you burn
a tie at 6 months a shirt at a year, pants at 18 months, and a suite
at 24 months. That was a lot of fun, nobody died.

Sunday: Today was churches as usual... Churches was pretty good, this
morning we got a text 30 min before churches started that we were
teaching the gospel principles lesson. Luckily the lesson was pretty
easy, it was on the fall of Adam and Eve. The lessons in the other
classes were pretty good as well. Kristina and Dianne both came to
church:) Kristina has been coming to church for awhile but still
exciting but Dianne we didn't even ask her to come:) She really loved
it and she is really starting to get into the whole thing. After
dinner we went over to the Browns house ( Dianne's/her daughter and
son in law house) and hung out with the Browns. It was Josh's birthday
on Friday so they made cake and we didn't get a piece so they saved a
piece for us. Ate some cake then shared a message on the atonement. If
you haven't seen the addiction recovery videos the church put out you
need to watch them. They're so amazing. In the gospel library, family,
scroll to the bottom, click on steps to recovery videos. So amazing to
see the affect of the atonement in these people's lives. Super funny,
sister brown tried guessing who has been out on their mission longer
and she guessed I have. Haha Elder Rasmussen just went over 18 months

This week as we were reading with Dianne in 1 Nephi a verse really
stuck out to me. It was 1 Nephi 2:16 which says "And it came to pass
that I, Nephi, being exceedingly young, nevertheless being large in
stature, and also having great desires to know of the mysteries of
God, wherefore, I did cry unto the Lord; and behold he did visit me,
and did soften my heart that I did believe all the words which had
been spoken by my father; wherefore, I did not rebel against him like
unto my brothers." What really stuck out me in this scripture is that
he he had a desire to know the mysteries of God... So he asked God to
help him understand the truth. God spoke to him through the Holy Ghost
and told him that the things his Father, Lehi was telling him were
true. Through this confirmation he was able to be more supportive and
willing to listen to his father telling his family they had to leave
their home and precious things. We can follow Nephi's example and cry
into the Lord and ask him to understand this gospel better and know
it's truth. Not only have I had these confirmations but I've seen
others have these confirmations. I love this Gospel, so glad I had the
desire to know that led me to where I am now. Love you all! Have a
great week!


Elder Smith 

A member's motorcycle he let me sit on

The new district

Richard's son, Richie, and his girlfriend, Kristina

The Kitelinger girls

Monday, February 15, 2016

Week 26

AREA: Benson, AZ
COMPANION: Elder Rasmussen

Monday: We went over to Brother Barney's junk yard today and broke
some cars looking for something to do. Something about throwing a
rotor disc through the windshield of a car is super fun. While we were
their we found a stereo to replace the one the we have in the trailer
already. This one has an AUX cable which is what we were going for.
Our phone was still broken today which made contacting people really
difficult. After all that we went to dinner then Al's to hang out. We
have a pretty close relationship with Al and he is very talented at a
lot of things and I asked him if he would be able to help me make a
leather journal cover and so we made one. Turned out super cool.

Tuesday: We did a lot of service for Brother Barney today... It was
kinda one of those things where there was so much stuff to do we would
feel bad saying we should probably go. We didn't have any appointments
or anything but we stayed there till about 3:30 doing service. We got
a lot done though which is good, he has to be off his property by
Saturday I think is what he said so he needs the help dramatically.
While we have been doing service one of the guys we have been working
with Cody is a less active member and I feel that since he has been
working around Barney and us, he has become more interested in the
church and he's been asking some questions.

Wednesday: Zone meeting was today which was pretty fun... We talked
about companionship unity and how important it is which was nice to
hear about, feel like it's something me and Elder Rasmussen can work
on more. Zone meeting went a lot longer than planned which was not
good for us because we had an appointment we had to make it too. We
had to call and reschedule but they understood and were very nice
about it. Next was dinner and then we had an appointment with Kristina
but Richard wasn't there so we had to reschedule. She had her friend
Becky over who I had seen a few times around town and felt I should
talk to her but never did. It was pretty crazy that she was there...
We talked a little. Didn't schedule any appointment but I'm sure we
will see each other again.

Thursday:  Today was a really good day. This morning was pretty
typical... This afternoon we went to Sierra Vista with Dona and Steve
to help them pick out a new computer and printer. Elder Rasmussen is a
complete computer geek and led them to what they need. Went home,
hooked up the stuff, and then we had dinner. We then went to our
lesson at Kristina's which was probably the best lesson I have ever
been in. The spirit was so strong, she bore her testimony to us about
how she truly believes that this is the true church. We invited her to
think about a date she would want to be baptized. There still is a lot
of stuff that has to go down before that can happen but it's still
super exciting. Kristina is so ready to be baptized :) she is so happy
to have the gospel in her life and I know wouldn't change having it in
her life for anything.

Friday: Weekly planning day... That was a blast... Sat inside doing
that most of the day. Went to our appointment with Dianne at 3 which
went really well. We brought her a big print Book of Mormon because
she has bad eyes and read the introduction pages. Read it with her
daughter and son in law and invited them to read as a family at least
one chapter a day. The rest of the day was dinner and we tried to stop
by and see Harold but he was in Sierra vista with Jose. Talked with
someone there named Tim and invited him to meet with us and so we are
stopping by on Tuesday to teach him.

Saturday: Super exciting day! This morning we drove out to Tucson for
Aimee's baptism! So amazing to see the gospel make such a huge
influence in her life. She was so ready to be baptized and I'm so glad
I could be there to see. The spirit was so strong at the baptism it
made me want to cry. Elder Ames gave a very good talk on baptism and
the Holy Ghost, Ric performed the baptism and could not have done a
better job. While at the baptism I got to see the Broadbent's and some
other families from my old ward. Such a great day, after the baptism
Me, Ras, Ames, and Cunningham went to Chick-fil-A for lunch. We then
went back to Benson, went home to Change out of our suits then had
dinner. Calls were tonight for transfers, were staying together for at
least another 6 week... Weren't really expecting a change so it's all

Sunday: Happy Valentine's Day! First Valentine's Day on the mission.
Went well... Felt like a normal day for the most part. This morning I
opened up a package from Savannah, got ready for church, went to get
into the truck and couldn't find the keys so we were late to church,
that was kinda embarrassing. Church was pretty good today... Still
feels really long, because it is... 6 hours. But the lessons were
really good and I'm learning a lot. Went to Kristina's after church
for a little, went to dinner, and then stopped by Dori's.

I'd like to bear my testimony on baptism and how grateful I am to have
this ordinance available to us on the earth today. This week I had the
opportunity to see Aimee enter the waters of baptism and come out
cleansed from sin. After the baptism I talked with her about how she
felt and she said she felt calm, relaxed, peaceful, and clean. This
feeling will be able to stay with her for the rest of her life. As she
continues to repent, go to church and partake of the sacrament, and
renew that covenant with our Heavenly Father.  We all can feel the
peace Aimee feels if we take upon us the name of Jesus Christ and are
baptized, and endure to the end. I have seen how this ordinance has
blessed my life and I can promise anyone I meet that through the
Gospel of Jesus Christ we can return to live with our Heavenly Father
and be the happiest we can be. I love this Gospel and I am so thankful
to be a part of it.

Love you all!


Elder Smith

Monday, February 8, 2016

Week 25

AREA: Benson, AZ
COMPANION: Elder Rasmussen

Monday: Just your typical p-day... It did snow today which was pretty
cool but it was not an enjoyable snow... It was extremely windy and
cold. This morning we had to go get our car fixed because it was
leaking oil. We later found out some idiot didn't put the oil filter
on all the way and it almost fell off the car. They had to put in 4
quarts of oil after fixing the filter. We then did some emailing and
spent the rest of day chilling. Didn't have any appointments tonight
so we went home and hung out with Aaron. Aaron doesn't have a phone or
anything just a 1st gen. iPad that is super slow and old. Elder
Rasmussen had an iPad mini 1 back home that nobody was using so he
decided to give it to him. Never have I seen a smile so big on his
face. It was really awesome to see that.

Tuesday: This morning we read with Aaron as usual and we were reading
D&C 131:6 which said "It is impossible for a man to be saved in
ignorance". This really I feel spoke to him and we discussed it for
awhile. After that we went over to Bro. Barney's for some more
service. Then we went to a less actives and talked about how she wants
towards working to the temple. Had a great discussion their, had
dinner, and then had an appointment at Kristina's. That was great for
the most part and then Kristina cut my hair:)

Wednesday: Today was district meeting as usual, then we went and went
through potential investigator lists and stopped by Dianne's. She's
technically a part member family since she is living with her daughter
and son in law who are members. While there we had a discussion on The
Book of Mormon and invited her to read the introduction. We scheduled
a return date which is exciting:) New investigator. Then we went to
Jonathan's and through around a football until Ras kicked it into a
cactus... Stupid cactus... Haha gave a lesson on The Book of Mormon
which I feel went well for the most part. Still isn't super interested
but we're still having fun and he's opening up more and more each time
we meet with him. We finished up the day at the Curothers house where
we had a great time.

Thursday: Today started out really good but then went down hill... All
of our morning  appointments canceled so we had to go look for stuff
to do. Just went around checking on people. We tried to stop by
Harold's to see how he was doing because he was sick and he wasn't
home so read with Jose. After reading with Jose we went to a less
actives which was super spiritual. The Boyce family has had some
pretty difficult trials in their life which led to inactivity so we
showed him the Mormon Message "Mountains to Climb" it is one of my
favorite Mormon messages and makes me want to cry every time. We
talked about the video a little and how it talks about how we can make
it through any trial we going through, through the help of Jesus
Christ. His daughter Jessica was crying and he kinda was awkward but
still responsive knowing what we were saying was true.

Friday: Weekly planning day... This morning we did have to drive over
to McDonald's to meet up with some other missionaries to drop
something off. Came back did studies and then weekly planning. That
lasted practically all day but we're already for our upcoming week. We
then went to dinner, tried to stop at a members to read but she wasn't
home, and then went home for the night and talked to Aaron some.
Something stupid happened with our phone today, we tried calling and
texting people but it wouldn't let us for some reason so we called
AT&T and someone suspended our phone line. It was so stupid...

Saturday:Today we did a lot of service. Went over to Bro. Barney's and
at around 10:30 and stayed there till about 3, we spent the day
helping him pour cement for his new garage. After service we stopped
by the house to change then went over to dinner hoping they knew we
were coming. Since they didn't know which time they needed to start
making dinner(because our phone wasn't working) we showed up then they
started making dinner. After dinner we went over to the Merrils and
had a great time talking to them. They're a part member family we are
going to be starting to teach. Should be a lot of fun:)

Sunday: Getting used to having church so long is going to be
difficult... People complain about church being 3 hours long, try
going for 6. Other than the constant sitting in church... It was good.
Testimony meetings were good and I went up and bore my testimony in
Benson Ward. After church we went too dinner which was super far from
where everyone lives, stayed there for a little too long getting to
know them and then went to the Kitelingers to give Sister Kitelinger a
blessing of comfort.

This week I would like to talk about the power of the Atonement of
Jesus Christ. The Atonement it something we use in our daily lives
every time we say sorry... I don't know about you but I feel like I
say sorry a million times a day. Through the atonement we don't just
have the ability to be forgiven of our sins but to be comforted during
our trials. While Christ was on the earth he suffered for all our sins
and afflictions. He knows and experienced every pain and suffering you
have felt. Down to the stubbing of your toe. Through sincere prayer,
priesthood blessings, fasting, and many other things the atonement of
Jesus Christ can comfort us in more ways than one. I've seen how the
atonement has blessed my life in so many ways. I would not be here
today if I didn't use the atonement in my life during the trials I've
been through. Love you all! Thanks for all the prayers:)


Elder Smith

Elder Rasmussen driving with his teeth...

Huge turkey a member has...

You know it's cold when the pool freezes in Arizona...

Thank you so much to the Activity Day girls :) how did you know i needed new socks? Happy Valentine's Day!

After a long days work, kick back and drink a tall glass of... cranberry juice.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Week 24

AREA: Benson, AZ
COMPANION: Elder Rasmussen

Dear Friends and Family,
Monday: P-Day was pretty good for the most part. For pday we did
normal p-day stuff which was pretty good. We are so far away from our
zone and we thought we had an early dinner so we didn't drive down to
Sierra Vista. Turns out after it was too late our dinner canceled on
us so the member gave us $20 so we had lunch and dinner with it. Taco
Bell and McDonald's... It was fantastic. Then we did our usual Monday
thing of going over to the Curothers house which was fun.

Tuesday: Today was full of service for Brother Barney. It was really
fun until I thought I broke my finger. We were adjusting the blades on
a fork lift and accidentally smashed my finger in between the tractor
and the fork lift blade. It didn't hurt that bad but was kinda a shock
at first, luckily I was wearing gloves otherwise it would be a lot
worse. It swelled up pretty bad but I could still move it. Got it
checked out by a member who's a paramedic who said its fine... Just
put some ice on it. Already back to normal for the most part. After
all that we had a lesson with Harold on the Word of Wisdom which went
very well other than Jose was going crazier than usual... I mean he's
in a mental institute but he wasn't acting like himself. The lesson
went great, he accepted to live the Word of Wisdom and work to quit
smoking. We did have a lesson planned with Kristina but when we got
there Richard wasnt home so we couldnt go in, we rescheduled so it was
all good.

Wednesday: District meeting was pretty good today, we discussed the
broadcast last week and learned a little more that I missed. After
district meeting we went to Bob Longs, a member in our wards house
where we sat and listened to him ramble on for two hours... Wish I
could say what it was about... But he talked the whole time. Our
lesson with Kristina had to get rescheduled again but it's all good.
Dinner was fun though and the member might be getting us some custom
wood pens. He makes the wood features on them.

Thursday: Today was a pretty good day:) This morning we had interviews
with mission president and he said I have to go home. Jk. Haha
interviews went great... Nothing exciting happened. After interviews
we went to Brother Barney's again so we could help him with the
building he is building for his car shop. After we helped him with
that we had an appointment with a recent converts/recently
reactivated/ PMF's house the Kitelingers, which is always fun. Went to
the Dovers to dinner, we cleaned out their chimney before we ate so
that was fun:) After dinner we went to the Da La Cruz house for a
lesson. They're a recent convert/ recently reactivated family.

Friday: Today was weekly planning which is what we did most of the
day... That was fun as usual... Not. After planning we tried to go
visit some people, then had dinner. After dinner we had our lesson
with Kristina which went well. It was on keeping the sabbath day Holy
which they were already doing great at so it wasn't a too difficult of
a lesson. Something cool Kristina told us though is that she had two
amazing missionary moments! One was a family that just moved to Benson
who is looking for a church to go too, and another was her sister. So
happy when she told us about that:)

Saturday: Today we started out with our daily routine but then went to
service at the Barny's again. He has been needing a lot this week
because he has to have all this stuff done by the 17th of this month
and there is still a lot to be done. After service we went to
Tombstone on a district blitz. The problem with going to a tourist
town on a Saturday to go knock doors is that nobody is home... Because
they're all working. So we only talked to about 3 people and only one
showed some interest and invited the sisters who's area it was to come
back and share a message. After doing that we went to dinner  then
went to try and visit some people then went home for the night.

Sunday: This morning we had church which was pretty good. After
sacrament meeting for Benson ward we had Ward council in Butterfield
Ward which was a two hour special Ward council were we talked about
every single member in the Ward to find them home teachers. After our
meeting went home for lunch then went back to church for gospel
doctrine and the 5th Sunday meeting which was really good... It was on
technology and how we should use them in church. After church we went
to go check on Tim our investigator and ended up not realizing we were
breaking the sabbath day when we got there started helping him work on
his car... Haha Didn't even think about it till after we were done.
After that we had dinner, and then went to Dori's house and had an
amazing lesson on Temples. She is a recently reactivated member and we
told her about some of the ordinances we can do in the temple and it
really got her excited and gave her a desire to get sealed to her
husband who passed away from cancer in 2011. Super awesome lesson that
we didn't expect, we went over to read scriptures. We then went home
and Elder Rasmussen had end of the month calls to do... Super fun for

I want to bear my testimony of the importance of loving one another.
President Monson says, "Love is the very essence of the gospel, and
Jesus Christ is our Exemplar." As a missionary if I didn't atleast
attempt to love everyone I taught things would not work out at all.
This is something I struggle with sometimes... Whenever I teach
someone I try to speak to them... I don't just teach a lesson. I've
seen how by teaching people not lessons has touched the people I'm
teaching and know that if we all love one another we will all be
happier. We're all brothers and sisters, no matter what people have
done to us we need to try our best to love them. I want to invite you
to all "love one another as He as loved you." Just like in the primary



Elder Smith