Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Week 37

What a wonderful feeling it is to get to go outside and work. I have missed being outside. This week was a pretty quick one and one that was full of miracles and blessings as well as learning experiences. I am just glad that I am no longer sick! And that I can function as a missionary again! Last P-day we had a district lunch. It was pretty awesome to sit around with just the sisters and hang out. I think it helped with District Unity as well which is always a plus! On Wednesday there was a worldwide missionary broadcast. First time they have done that in like 10 years so it was cool to be a part of it! We heard from Elder Oaks, Elder Anderson and Elder Bednar as well as some other auxiliary leaders. It was awesome and the spirit was teaching us all how to improve our missionary work. After the broadcast I had the chance to talk to Sister Miller while my companion talked with President. I love President and Sister Miller. They truly love their missionaries and their calling. It will be hard to watch them leave in a few months. It seems like July is far away but I know without a doubt it will be here in a heartbeat. We had a couple lessons with Anna this week. She has been unable to listen to the scriptures because her computer doesn't work. We are trying to find a way to overcome this problem. She did tell us that she wants to come to church though! That she would at least come once to try it out and see. I truly believe that her coming to church will spark progression. She is such an inspirational person and I feel blessed to have been able to meet her and teach her. She will be out of town all week so no teaching her for a while. We had a cool experience last week while we were riding bikes. We found a young lady unloading her car. We asked if she needed help and she said yes! First of all no one in this town says yes to help. So it was obvious she wasn't from here. But we helped her move into her new apartment and she told us that she would love to hear our message! I was super pumped! She is a single mom with 4 boys ages 10, 8, 5 and 2. She needs a ward family and the gospel. I hope we can teach her soon and that she is interested in learning. We knocked on a lot of doors this week and I have never seen so many empty houses. Like everyone packed up and left town together. So it was a little discouraging to tract a ton and not talk to many people. But it was still good because we were able to work! And working brings joy! Funny story, when we went to lunch last week I was pretty tired and out of it. I grabbed the closest drink to me and let me tell you something I learned. Mountain Dew and Root Beer taste very different. The funny part was my companion was so focused on his food that he didn't notice that I quietly put his drink back on the table. It was great! Elder Carruth is sneaky. Later that same day we met with David. we had a good lesson with him and we extended a baptismal date of 2/20/16. We also told him that he and Megan would have to get married. Megan's year mark is coming up soon and she wants to go to the temple really bad. We want them to be able to go together and get sealed. David was very hesitant about the date and didn't commit. But he did tell us he would pray about it. When we saw him yesterday morning he told us that him and Megan had been talking about getting married on the 14th so he can get baptized on the 19th!! It was a MIRACLE!!! The Lord truly softened his heart and he told us that he felt good about it and was excited and nervous. I was so pumped and excited when we left the apartment. I am happy for both of them and I can not wait for them to go to the temple and get sealed. I feel like I was sent to Rio Rancho specifically for David. I am so excited to watch him progress. The rest of the weekend was pretty normal work wise. We both gave talks on Sunday about service. I talked about the story of Ammon in Alma 17-19 and how we can learn from it. I spoke for about 10 minutes and felt like it went pretty well. So we are starting a new initiative this next transfer with the members. We are trying to increase ward trust and to help the ward invite their friends to hear the gospel. We are trying to visit every active member of the ward in the next 7 weeks and extend a challenge to them. Hopefully we will flood the world with referrals!! It will be awesome. That is about it from me!! Hope all of you are doing awesome. And remember, God loves you.

Quotes of the Week:
"The most important thing we can do is testify of the Savior."
"Teaching is listening and observing."
"Conversion is a miracle and comes through faith."
"We are agents not objects."

Spiritual Experience of the Week:
District meeting this week was pretty great. I didn't have as much time as I wanted to train but we talked about testimonies and the power that comes from them. The spirit was strong and we all bore testimonies of the eternal truths that we hold dear. I know that bearing testimonies not only strengthens our own testimony, but helps others come to Christ.

Miracle of the Week:
David wanting to get baptized and married is a huge miracle. It was the miracle that we needed in this area to inspire us and motivate us to continue to work hard. The Lord truly has a plan for all of us.

Spiritual thought of the Week:
My thought for this week comes from Mosiah 23:21-22. We will all face trials and challenges in this life, including the righteous. It is when we are being righteous, and face trials, that we can know that our loving Heavenly Father is helping us become more like him. It is though these challenges that we grow in faith. 

Love you all!!

Elder Carruth 

Week 36

Hello from Rio Rancho! This will be a short email because this week has been full of sickness and sitting around doing nothing. I hate doing nothing. Like really do not like it. At all. Ever. But I know that everything happens for a reason and I have learned a lot from being sick. Something that did happen last week was I hit my 8 month mark. That is crazy. 1/3 of my mission has flown past me and I really am scared of how fast the rest of it will go. Days go by in blurs but weeks go by like seconds. I fell like I will be home in no time even though I have over a year left. So we did work for most of the week up until Friday. We had an awesome lesson with David on Thursday and he told us that he wants to meet more than once a week and that he is thinking about getting baptized!! That was really awesome for us and a good boost of motivation. Friday we had district meeting and I gave all of my energy for it. By the time it was over I was dead from being sick and we didn't work the rest of the day. We tried to work Saturday but my body rejected that idea too. Sunday morning I woke up with a fever of 102 and that really put me out for the day. I got some meds though and it hasnt returned. I hope to be back to full work on Wednesday. Since we have been sick we have been blessed with 9 referrals. It shows that the work of the Lord continues even when we are not able to be outside. I am grateful for the hard for of the missionaries around me and the example they are to me, especially my district. That is pretty much it for now! Sorry for the short email!!

Spiritual Experience of the Week:
District Meeting was really powerful. I felt the spirit carry me and give me the energy I needed to present a training for my missionaries. As soon as the meeting ended my energy was gone. I know that the Lord strengthened me and helped me to help my district. It was awesome. 

Miracle of the Week:
We were knocking on doors last Tuesday and a lady named Tiffany answered. This was the conversation:
Us: Hello we are representatives of Jesus Christ sharing the message of His gospel.
Tiffany: Hey I went to church once in Texas but then I moved here. I haven't been invited  back since.
Us: Well you are officially invited. Would it be alright for us to come teach you and your family about our message?
Tiffany: OF COURSE!
It was truly a miracle and a testimony that the Lord prepares people for the gospel.

I love you all!!!!
Elder Carruth 


Thursday, January 14, 2016

Week 35

Hello everyone!! Welcome to another week gone by in the life of Elder Carruth the Missionary! This week went by crazy slow and crazy fast at the same time. I don't know how it does that. This week was a trail and test week where we got put through the refining furnace of affliction (1 Nephi 20:10). But the lessons learned and the revelation received will last an eternity or two. We had service at the food pantry last week. We missed the previous week so it was nice to go back. We rode our bikes this time in the snow. I hate snow even more now than I ever have. It was a good service day though and people were really grateful for our help. We are going again tomorrow. We are teaching this lady named Anna. I don't know if I have talked about her much but we tracted into her before Christmas and started teaching her. She loves everything we teach and tells us that it all makes sense. She has a peaceful spirit in her home. She came to a baptism but hasn't made it to church yet. She will get baptized we just need to be patient. She is an awesome person who is genuinely searching for light and truth. My companion and I have a new strategy to tracting. When we have big blocks of time, like 3 to 5 hours, of nothing but tracting, we set mini goals before we take a break or go visit someone. It has seemed really helpful to us and we talk to way more people in a day doing it that way. Instead of going till we talk to 20 people, we talk to 5 and then 5 and then 7 and then 3. Breaking it up with drop by visits to members and potentials. It is awesome. The miracle story from last week, David, had his first lesson this week! It went really well too and he participated and asked questions. He is searching for the truth and really trying to find answers. We are excited to teach him again this week. He came to church too!! And stayed the whole 3 hours. So we got some big news this last week. President Miller has stopped transfer meetings from happening. There will be no more. Instead you will meet at the mission office and immediately go to your new area. Transfers will now be held on Monday which means there will be no Monday Pday anymore. There will be a Pday right away if I get moved to a new area which is nice. We will also know where we are going when we get transfer calls. It will be interesting to see how it all works out!! The Lord knows what He is doing. We also got the news of our new mission president being called. Tim B. Guffey will take over July 1 of this year. I love President Miller and it will be hard to transition to a new President. I will have almost half of my mission with each of them. The odds of me being a zone leader next transfer continue to raise. I hope if I talk about it enough it wont happen. I love being a district  leader and working so closely with missionaries. This district has been my favorite one yet. We shall see. Saturday was a great day. We had a few lessons and worked hard all day. We were fasting that day as well so we could give one of the Sisters a blessing that night. She has been going through a trial and needed some heavenly help. When we got there she chose me to give her the blessing and it was the most powerful experience of my mission. The spirit was so strong and it was a revelation filled moment. The Lord had prepared all of us, through fasting and prayer, to fell of His love and guidance. That is pretty much it!! Hope all of you are doing well and felling the love of the Savior. Know that I love you and support all of you!!

Quotes of the Week:
"The greatest battles we face will be within our own hearts."
"There are two ways to obey a commandment: Obedience or Sacrifice."
"Love is a natural consequence of service."

Spiritual Experience of the Week:
The blessing we gave this week was incredibly powerful. A couple days later the sister came to us and told us that it literally answered every question she had. The Lord knew what she need to hear and through imperfect people accomplished his perfect purposes.

Miracle of the Week: 
This week was full of tender mercies and mini miracles. As far as picking a specific one I can't. The Lord knows all of us though. And He is always there.

Spiritual Thought of the Week:
We have been hearing a lot about the Sabbath day lately. It is so crucial to our spiritual health to devote a day to the Lord. This involves more than just church attendance, but a who day where our thoughts and actions are focused on the Lord and the Atonement of the Savior. I invite all of us to spend a little more time on the Sabbath remembering Jesus Christ and what He has done for us. 

I love you all!!

Elder Carruth 

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Week 34

Well what a week it has been here in Rio Rancho. First of all Happy New Year to all. I hope we have all set some goals and plans for this upcoming year and have included some that will help draw us nearer to the Savior. 2016 is my blackout year. I will be a missionary every single day in 2016 and that makes it seem really long but I know how fast the last 8 months have gone. Time moves faster and faster everyday. This week was full of struggles and miracles and everything in between!! So last Pday we played football with the zone. Well... I collided with one of the Hermanas on accident and she beat me up. My thumb was almost black it was so swollen. I had a nurse in our ward check it out to make sure it wasn't broken. It wasn't and I got to tell a fun story the rest of the day. We had the opportunity to visit the sisters this last week and see how they are all doing. They all have such amazing spirits about them and I enjoy serving closely with all of them. Visits like this are my favorite part of being a District Leader. So we decided to fast with the Zone Leaders on New Years Eve for a couple of our sisters. Let me tell you how that day went. The day itself was great and we had a lot of success knocking on doors. It was almost dinner time when a man came up to us and invited us in for food. We hadn't eaten all day so we accepted. He fed us Luke-warm chili that I almost couldn't eat. Right after that we had dinner that was only apple pie and doritos. That was dinner. So all we ate that date was apple pie, doritos and sketchy chili. I have been sick ever since. It was a great experience. On a more serious note we had our investigator Anna come to a baptism this week! It was awesome and we are excited to see her tomorrow. She is progressing really well and really loves the things we teach. I went on exchanges with Elder Summerhays this week. He is one of our Zone Leaders. He keeps telling me that I am going to be a zone leader next transfer so I keep telling him he is going AP. It is a great game we play. We had a lot of fun together and did a lot of work. Our whole day was unsuccessful as far as numbers go but we learned a lot. Anyway that is all I have for now. I got sick after that and am still battling a small fever and nausea. We worked a full day yesterday almost though so I am still alive. love you all!!
Quotes of the Week:
None :(

Spiritual Experience of the Week:
So the sisters both got sick at the same time. They asked us for blessings and I immediately thought of one of them and what she needed to hear. When the time came that same sister asked me to give her the blessing. I love how the Lord prepares me to serve His children. This has happened a few times on my mission and I love it every time.

Miracle of the Week:
So on Friday our most progressing investigator dropped is. It was a really hard thing to take because she was doing so well. Later that evening we had dinner with a recent convert who is living with her boyfriend. Halfway through dinner the boyfriend told us he wants to take the discussions! It was awesome and a miracle. The Lord had prepared him and we get to teach him now.

I love you all!!!

Elder Carruth

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Week 33

Hello everyone!! Guess what!! We have snow! I know it is absolutely terrible and I hate every second of it. It is in the cycle of melting and freezing and snowing again and then it repeats. I almost fell today in the parking lot at our apartment. Not about this life haha. But things are going well and before I forget MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!! Hope you all have a joyous holiday and took a minute to remember the Savior and His infinite sacrifice for us. We had a cool experience last Tuesday. One of the High Councilors came out with us and it was 8 oclock and we had nothing to do. He told us to pray and listen to the spirit. During the prayer I got the distinct impression to visit a less active family. I voiced my prompting and we went. That was one of the most spiritual meetings with that family that I have ever had. It was amazing and I know that the Lord sent us to be there with them that night. It was so cool to watch the spirit work on them and testify to them of the importance of coming to church. It was a special experience for me. Wednesday was a great day for us. We helped at the food pantry again and I am starting to remember the regular people that come and am making friends. Right after that a couple sisters from the ABQW Zone came up with one of their members and we all went caroling for the members dentist. It was pretty fun and a great way to spread some Christmas cheer. We had two lessons that day too. We taught the Restoration to Anna. She is an older lady who lost her husband in July. We found her tracting. When we went through the first vision she told us she felt peaceful. And when we taught the Plan of Salvation later in the week she told us it all makes sense and that she feels good about it. The Lord truly has prepared her for the gospel. She is of the Elect of God. I feel so blessed to be able to teach her and help her along the path back to her loving Heavenly Father. We also taught Amber that day and she accepted a baptism date of 1/23. She needs to get married though and she is also due to give birth in March so it might not happen when we planned it to. We are also going to get her Fiance involved later tonight and hopefully get them both to progress. She has seen the blessings of the gospel already and has felt the spirit touch her heart. I love teaching her. Eventually Christmas morning came!! What a beautiful day!! The snow didn't hit till Saturday so it wasn't a white Christmas. We had Zone Training to start the morning and it ended up being a testimony meeting for the zone. I really enjoyed hearing the stories of all of the other missionaries, especially the ones in my district. I took the time to bear my testimony and to tell my district how much I care about them and love them. They are all fantastic Sisters and I love working with them everyday. There was a special spirit in the room that day and I loved it. Our Ward Mission Leader gave us stocking after that!! Full of candy and socks! There was also some cash that he said the members of the ward pitched in for. It was really sweet of the ward to do that and I love them even more for it. We got to Skype home!! What a fantastic 30 minutes! Everyone in my family is still alive so that was nice. It was great to be able to see their pretty faces and hear their voices. It really motivated me to work hard and continue to push forward. I loved it. We spent most of the rest of Christmas visiting members and eating all the food we could. And there was a lot. Sunday was probably the worst day of my entire mission. No joke. It had snowed the day before and church got cancelled and President told us to stay inside and study. Nothing is worse for a missionary than staying inside ALL DAY. It was awful. But I got a lot of reading done so it wasn't all bad!! We had Zone Conference yesterday and it went well. President had some investigators come to do a Q & A and one of them happened to be one that I taught while I was in Belen. It was great to see Jacob and hear about his upcoming baptism. He will do amazing things in life and as a missionary for the Lord. I got the chance to talk to president a little and that was nice. I am going to miss him when he goes home in July. That was our whole week!! Hope you all are doing fantastic!! Love you all!!!!

Quotes of the Week:

"Just because God is smiling on someone else doesn't mean he is frowning on you."
"Don't be afraid to ask people what God has already asked them and promise them what God has already promised them."
"God does everything for a maybe."
"You get what you look for."
"We are not here to experience fear."
"No one can deny what you know to be true."

Spiritual Experience of the Week:

Sunday night the Sisters got really scary promptings. They were all freaking out and at about 10:20 PM I found myself in the Zone Leader apartment with 4 sisters, one of which asking for a blessing. She chose me to give the blessing and it was a sweet experience. I said things in the blessing that she later told me were exactly what she needed, that I followed the spirit perfectly. She felt much better after that and I felt really good. The spirit is an amazing gift and blesses the lives of God's children. 

Picture: So We tracted in the snow for an hour and my hair literally had ice in it. Frozen solid. 

Love you all!!

Elder Carruth