Sunday, April 27, 2014

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

Hope you all had a good holiday.  Thank you mom for the Easter package.  It was perfect.  I remember going to Jen & Lynars with the Brooksbys on Easter last year like it was yesterday.  Good luck today in track and maxing in football Ben!  We'll have to arm wrestle when we get back. :)  Elder Jacobs and I created an object lesson to teach the 3rd lesson in Preach My Gospel that involves arm wrestling.  

Blake, you'll have to send me some poems so I can use them in lessons!  I'm glad you're enjoying choir.  Good luck too to the twins today (tongue twister) at baseball and get better from your allergies. There's a member here who cured my companion of lactose-intolerance just by talking to him (she is a hypno-therapist).  It was pretty crazy.  Maybe you can go to a hypno therapist and have your allergies cured.  That'd be weird.

Another good week.  I really haven't had any "bad" weeks on my mission.  Just a couple challenging ones.  Challenging eventually equates to good though anyway.  

This week was full of exchanges.  I love exchanges because it gives us the opportunity to learn from many different perspectives.  Each area and Elder is unique in the way they help others come unto Christ.  

This is a poem written by one of our members, Sister Zohner, that she shared with us during a lesson:

How will I ever know
The way that I should go
Where can I turn to ease my troubled heart

Though young, only fourteen
And as strange as it may seem
The desire was great within my heart to know the truth
Many choices did surround me
many voices did confound me
that I would choose in the impatience of my youth

I found the scriptures held the key
To the question troubling me
If ye lack wisdom, ask of God He'll give it unto thee

James 1:5
If any any of you lack wisdom, let him as of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and 
Upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

I did reflect upon His words 
I followed the small voice that i heard
In wooded grove I offered prayer on bended knee

SEIZED by a darkness that did assail me 
I feared heart and soul would fail me
Fighting despair, I sought the Lord to avail my need

A pillar of light o'er my head shone
an unworldly brightness I'd never known
and two glorious personages in the air my gaze did see

One spake my name and beckoned near
To acknowledge on He held so dear

I did then ask which was the way
Which one should I choose this day
To this He answered none will do; the answer's nay

To join with any, His lips forbade
and as the light began to fade
Upon the ground, I weakly laid in Heaven's view

I told my mother all was well
My wondrous story I did tell
and though the powers of darkness combine against me, I will be true."

 (Copyright Sister Zohner)

After she shared that poem, we sang "Joseph's First Prayer."  It was amazing.

Enjoy the week!  Have lots of chocolate bunnies and candy bars.


Elder Young

p.s. (new favorite mormon message)

Easter Week

Yummy lemon cake made by the Zohners

Setting up a service project on an exchange with Elder Rushton

Another beautiful sunset that Brandyn loves

Member missionary class that we help teach on Sundays

My piano desk!  My pday project!

Jon Schmidt style
I remember this!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Pictures from Brandyn

Elder Jacobs drew the picture

Training for our District meeting

View from our balcony

So many LDS members in his district he has a CTR on his campaign poster

Elder Young  and Elder Brinkerhoff

My companion, Elder Jacobs is an awesome artist

Elder Hastings and I play the pianos at the church on Pday -you can see the other piano from the piano I sit at.

Elder Brandyn Young working hard


I love hearing about how everyone is doing.  Especially hearing about Bryce in his last transfer.  I know he has given everything to God on his mission.  It's neat to have similar experiences as he had with Nadia - the other day on exchanges we weren't sure exactly where someone lived, but knocked doors nearby and found the nicest lady who had four little boys.  We gave them all pictures of Jesus & her a Book of Mormon (she had a Bible).  We had a prayer with them & all the boys got quiet.  They loved it.  It reminded me of our house, when the piano would be playing, the twins running around playing tag & the dishes being done, all kinds of noises, until nighttime prayer.  There is something unique about a family kneeling together & being quiet to talk with God.  It wasn't a coincidence to run into that family.

This transfer our whole mission has made it a goal to pray for humility each day.  Elder Jacobs & I have seen answers to our prayers in unexpected ways.  We had four flats and a broken axle on our bikes! We've been rolling "Brazilian style" for most of the week (walking).  Last night we finally got our bikes fixed at a members house after our lesson.  It was about 9:20pm and the axle broke again!  We just figured we needed more humility. :)  It turned out that was one of two reasons.

As we walked up the hill to the temple on the sidewalk with our bikes, there was a car sitting on the curb.  We had a distinct impression to talk with them.  From the car window they said "Elders!  This is going to sound random, but could you give my friend a blessing?"  We said of course.  Her friend was sitting in the passenger seat while we gave her a blessing.  It was evident that they were both going through something extremely difficult.  We could feel the Spirit so strongly it was tangible.  They both began crying.  We don't know exactly why she needed a blessing, but we do know that if our brakes & axle didn't break, we would've biked right past.

1 But behold, I, Jacob, would speak unto you that are pure in heart. Look unto God with firmness of mind, and pray unto him with exceeding faith, and he will console you in your afflictions, and he will plead your cause.
 O all ye that are pure in heart, lift up your heads and receive the pleasing word of God, and feast upon his love; for ye may, if your minds are firm, forever.
I continue to be amazed at how well God knows us individually and how infinitely He loves us.  When we are pure in heart, He blesses us with strength.  When we aren't pure in heart, He blesses us with grace to be so. 

Although it has been challenging, it's been a fun week.  We did a couple exchanges - one with Elder Martinez & Hastings.  Elder Martinez speaks Spanish & nearly three quarters of contacts were in Spanish.  I could always understand them, but they could never understand me speaking Portuguese. :) I remembered enough Spanish from high school though to get along.  We met a boy who was 14 who just recently broke his arm.  We were able to share with him Alma 38:4 about how his cast was like "bonds" & being "stoned for the world's sake" was like being hit in football - they way he broke his arm.  We testified to him that he'd be able to be "delivered out of his trials and troubles, and afflictions and be lifted up at the last day" as I was through my femur experience. 

There is a reason we are where we are when we are as long as we're doing the right thing.  Always remember that & look for the reason why God has placed you where you are.  Miracles do happen.  I know God lives.

Love you all!

Elder Young the younger

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Las Vegas Temple

The Dahl family and Melissa (far left).  The first family I met on my mission.  No words to even describe how awesome they are.

The Peters -Brother Peters would come with us a lot to street contact and on visits.  He knows everything there is to know about cars.  He works for Nissan, so he would help people with their cars while sharing the gospel.  He is also the scout master,

Brother and sister Callister -Brother Callister promised that he would go to church before i left and he did!  He always dresses up as Santa Claus at the ward Christmas party.

My District

A dog ate the buckle off of Brandyn/s bag

Brother and Sister Hill

Elder Gwilliam, Gibson, Jacobs, Young, Farersten (left to right).  We are all visa workers going to Brazil.  In front of the house Elder Jacobs and I stay in.  

Photos from Elder Brandyn Young

Brother Naumu.  A counselor in the Bishopric.  He went with us a lot to teach Karolyn, a Polynesian lady from America Samoa that we were teaching.

Pogo jumping with Gary.  (Brother Knauls calls him cotton ball)

The Knauls family.  Emma, center, in front of Brother Knauls, was baptized in October.  Her mom is the other member in the family.  Brother Knauls is from Arkansas and we'd always talk about football and then he read from the Book of Mormon.  Awesome family.  

Brother and Sister Bratton.  Brother Bratton has some awesome mission stories.

The Bratton's Coca Cola collection

The Hancocks -from Italy!  Byron would go with us on visits a lot.  We would always have an Italian meal.  They are all very good at the piano.  Sister Hancock is one of the nicest people I have ever met.

More Photos

Elder Gould -He served in the army for two years before his mission.  Brandyn sat by him on the airplane to Las Vegas from Provo.

Elder Goldrup -Brandyn calls him the Latter Day Ammon. He was his zone leader in the North Zone

The Ferre family.  Brother Ferre was my Bishop in the Mountain Shadows ward.  They always have us over for ice cream.  Amazing family!

The Wolfskills!  Kyle, on the right, was baptized last month and fellowshipped by the Wolfskills.  They are so  funny.  Especially Sam, the young biy with the M&M shirt.  They weren't active 6 months ago, but as of last month & Kyle getting baptized, they come to church every Sunday.  Without fail, they would give us chips and salsa when we visited.  Kyle's mom and brother are now taking the lessons on the other side of town.

The Cocrans!  Brian, far left with jacket, would go out with us a lot on visits.  Elder Phipps  and Elder Young

Lots of pictures from Las Vegas

Awesome Sunset (just wait till Teresina)

Anderson family!  Tyler pitches for a major competitive baseball team

The Delimont family -brother Delimont is the first counselor in the bishopric.Sister Delimont will cut our hair on P-days.  Amazing Family!

The Miller Family -Teresa(their oldest daughter) just got back from a mission in Minnesota.  They each play a different string instrument(bass to violin) and they all sing very well.  They would give us tickets to each Las Vegas youth orchestra concerts.  We were allowed to attend if we brought someone who is learning about the gospel.

Elder Clawson (assistant to the President), Brandyn, Elder Hopkin, and Elder Phipps

Elder Faafuata and Elder Young -He was my zone leader in the North Zone and finished his mission and went back to Samoa last transfer.

Sister Tippets and the other Elders in the North Zone that are also going to Brazil.  She made Brandyn rice and beans for lunch before Elder Jones and Brandyn left for Central Zone.  The class is still going on in North.
Elder Gwilliam (my zone leader in the MTC and in Elder Phipps and my MTC district) is now companions with ElderPhipps and Elder Jacob's last companion is now in North Zone, doing language study with sister Tippetts.  Brother Wells, who served in Northern Brazil teachers Elder Jacobs and I Portuguese every other day at 6 am in the morning.  The other days we go to morning sports.  

The Hagfeldt AWESOME family!  Brother Hagfeldt served in Brazil and helped us out with Portuguese.

Loving the new area

Mom!  It was an awesome first week.  This area is nicknamed the Celestial Kingdom by missionaries who have served here.  The members take care of you like no where else.  It's really nice to have so much fellowship for each of the people we are helping to baptism.  I miss the people in Mountain Shadows, but love the people here too.  

Thanks for sending an Easter package!  Anything is good. Healthy snacks I usually eat the most of.  Thanks for sending the Mormon messages too and all the other packages you have sent.  Pictures/things to decorate the wall, & maybe a tshirt.  I am trying to think of other things I need, but I really don't need much.  If everyone in the family invites a friend to church (even if they say no) that'd be everything I want for Easter. 

Thank you Mom for everything.  I thought I already knew, but being on a mission has made me realize how much you do for us boys.

Love you,

 Jacob 3:1-2

Elder Young

Amo Conferencia


I'm happy to hear you enjoyed conference.  There was a family sitting in front of me all playing conference bingo with skittles & it made me laugh.  Glad you had a good first week home from spring break!  Visiting so many families on the mission makes me realize how blessed I was to participate in so many activities growing up, especially with a family of 8.  Good luck in basketball & baseball - "change in the car & eat at Sonic days" flew by so quick. :)

Good luck too on benchmark!  Just use D&C 9:8-9 and you should be good.

Beverly Glen is fantastic.  The temple is literally down the road.  A perfect segway when talking with people on the street.  Elder Jacobs & I are basically the same person. :) In high school he played linebacker, 2nd base, basketball, sang in choir, & held the same positions in student council.  Last year he did two semesters at BYU.  It's been a lot of fun already & it's only been a week.  He leaves for Brazil on the 29th - his visa just arrived!  He's going to Londrina (Southern Brazil).

A few years ago there was only one family in ward boundaries that wasn't a member.  There are more than a few now, but most of our work here is in re-activation and finding people to teach working with members.  It's awesome to see a whole family take in friends & show them how the Gospel has blessed their life.

Favorite talk?...Bishop Stevenson about how life is a 4 minute race.  That was such a cool analogy.  For behold, this alife is the time for men to bprepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of cthis life is the day for men to perform their dlabors.

Elder Bednar's was also insightful - I have always seen trials as something that makes us stronger, as does resistance in weight training, but I never thought about how resistance helps us move forward as well.  

Elder Holland's of course, was great.  It gave missionaries we watched conference with to share rejection stories. Just like resistance strengthens us, rejection can change testimony into conversion if we let it.  I know with all my heart the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored.

The thing that hit me most though (other than mashed potatoes), was the music.  That arrangement of I Stand All Amazed.  Dad I knew you'd know. :) 

President Packer's testimony of the Savior was powerful.  Almost as if he has seen Christ.  I hope to gain (or John Bytheway - "grow") a testimony of that stature.   

Hymn #217,

Elder Young

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Elder Young Loving Las Vegas

Elder Young and his ninja moves

Elder Phipps and Elder Young at the Las Vegas Temple.

The temple

A crazy sidewalk in Las Vegas!