Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Week 49

Elder Carruth said it is good to know the desert is protected should there be fire.

Took me a minute to figure this out - it says JOY - goes with the xmas lights I guess!
Hello everyone!!!!! Hope all is well with all of you wherever you may find  yourself today. It has been a crazy week! Like really crazy. But in a really great way! The work is awesome and now that we cover two wards it is a lot more to do! Well soon anyway. We have nothing in the new ward so we get to build it from the ground up. Anyway lets talk about the week. So last week we had a really cool experience. We were out on the field and there was a bunny. We decided to chase it. It ended up getting stuck in the fence. So I got to touch it! BOOM! Touched a wild bunny. I feel accomplished. So besides that we had a really good lesson with R. We met him at the church because he was facing a lot of opposition at home. His wife's family came to their house and through a huge fit over them investigating the church. His wife immediately declined any further meetings with us. R however, fought back and shared his testimony of the restored gospel, something that he knows is true through revelation. He stood up for his beliefs and is still getting baptized this weekend. It will be a powerful baptism. Since that day we have had two members invite R and his whole family over for dinner. His wife came too and enjoyed the company. Since then we have had dinner at R's home with his wife. Things are going well for now. Prayers would be gratefully accepted. We are really excited for Ryan. On Saturday he asked me to baptize him. I couldn't stop smiling. I am honored and blessed to even have the opportunity to do that. I am excited. If I would have left on my mission when I originally planned to, 6 months prior to my actual departure, I would have not met R. The Lord knows what he is doing. I promise and testify of that fact. We taught a couple of new investigators this week. One is M. She is Catholic and very very nice. She is interested in reading the Book of Mormon because she had a old friend who was a member and would talk to her about it. We have an appointment to go back this week and we are excited for it. Hopefully things go well. We also had a really cool experience. We knocked on the door of a guy named Hr. He told us to come back the following day so we did. When we got there his wife A answered. Usually a bad sign because the spouse is the brave one that tells us to go away. However! She told us to come back in 20 minutes and that they were looking for a church! We came back and the listened to us talk about the Book of Mormon and its importance to us. They asked questions and accepted a baptismal invite. The spirit was powerful. Really powerful and we are really excited to go back and see them this week. More details to come. Sunday was the first time I got to attend multiple wards as a missionary. Now that we cover two we get to go to two blocks. Our day started at 7 AM with PEC and ended at 4 PM after our second block. It was a lot of church but a good thing too. We will see how it goes as it continues. That is about it for the week! Love you all!!

Elder Carruth 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Week 48

Hello family, friends, loved ones, acquaintances, people I know, God's children, and yeah! Hi. Hope you all had a fulfilling week full of joy, happiness and success. I had a great week! Every week in the mission field is fantastic. If you don't believe me then go on a mission! It will be great for you. So the work has slowed down a little bit here in Panorama Heights. But! We have exciting news! One of the wards split Sunday and we picked up one of the pieces! We now cover the High Range ward too. It is exciting! I have never covered two wards on my mission before. 2 times as much church on Sunday. More members. More meals! It will be awesome. I am also super stressed about it because we white washed into High Range. We know nothing about the ward or the area. But the Elders who have been covering it are in the zone still so it will be great. We are pumped. We are excited to help both wards grow and split again! We went on exchanges last week with Elder Summerhays and Elder Olsen. I went with Elder Olsen to his area. He has been out for about 2 months and it was the first time he took over the area. He was nervous but did a great job. We had a lot of fun getting to know each other and working hard. I learned a ton. We had a cool miracle that day. We decided to go tracting in Chamisa's area looking for YSAs. We found a referral to give to Chamisa while we were there. When we called them they needed some supplies that we just so happened to have in the truck. We went to see them and they just happened to be on the street of one of Elder Olsen's investigators. We just happened to find him while he was home and talked to him for 20 minutes and set up an appointment. Lots of things just so happened to work out for that to happen. It was a cool miracle. The Lord clearly was in charge of the day. The church is true. Later that same day we stopped by a member to give a blessing. She insisted that I looked like a bishop. No amount of denial from me would stop her from calling me baby bishop from that point forward. It was funny but definitely not prophecy. We had MLC this week! When all the leaders of the mission get together and are trained by the Assistants and President. It was a lot of fun! And the spirit was really powerful. We were really excited to go back to our zones and train the missionaries on what we had learned there. I love days that we get to spend with President. He is truly inspired and I love him. It will be sad when he goes home in July. We had another exchange this week with the Assistants. We went to their area and I spent the day with Elder Gardner. It was a lot of fun. We laughed a ton and spent the whole day knocking on doors. We talked to a lot of people. I enjoyed this exchange much more than the last one with the APs. Yesterday was the first day taking over the High Range ward. That ward happens to have a hospital in its boundaries so we got to go give a blessing there yesterday. It will be an interesting couple of weeks. We are hoping that since transfers are only 3 weeks away that they will keep Elder Summers and I together for one more transfer. I have never had a companion for more than 2 transfers but now would be a great time to start! That is pretty much our whole week. The update on R and his family: We still teach R everyday. He is really excited for his baptism on the 23rd. He came to church on Sunday and bore his testimony to the congregation. He actually challenged them all to never give up. It was powerful and a true sign of conversion. We were also able to teach his family this week. His wife and son both accepted baptismal invitations and we will hopefully teach them twice a week. It is so amazing to see them all progress. They are such an amazing family. R is the most sincere person I have met in my life. Full of love and generosity. I look up to him. That is my whole week! Love you all!!

Elder Carruth 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Week 47

Well hello everyone! Hope all is well back home and abroad. If not then know that I pray for you and that the Lord loves you. All things happen for our good. This week was a pretty decent one!! Or a really amazing one. However you want to describe it. I really enjoyed it! It was a ton of fun and laughs all around. Let me tell you all you want to know about it!! And then some!!! So I will begin with some fun things from last week. We decided that since Pday of last week was 2 days after Easter that we could have a zone Easter egg hunt! It was a ton of fun. We bought 150 eggs and candy in all of them! It was super cheap since everything was half off. Great fun was had by all. It was a good pday full of laughs and joy. The following day we went on exchanges with Cabezon. I went to Cabezon with Elder Kirkham. If you have been diligent in your study of my emails you will remember the day I went on exchanges with Elder Kirkham back when I was in Belen! It was a good day even though everything fell through. Like I mean everything. But we provided a lot of service and helped everyone we could. It was great. When I woke up Thursday morning I realized that it was the 31st. It was slightly surprising to me since it feels like October. We had zone conference that day. We got to go be taught and trained by president and it was awesome! We learned a lot and felt the spirit in abundance. April Fools was good! We came up with a great prank to pull on the zone but it never came to pass. Probably the Lord stepping in and telling us no. But it was still a great day! We knocked doors a little bit that day and we talked to one person. He told us something that I have never heard anyone say before... ever. I don't know if it was inspirational or not. Or maybe just food for thought. But what he told us will never be forgotten. He said "You two are way better than a pregnant man." Anyway it was a good 20 minute talk before dinner. We have finally reached General Conference! What a great weekend! If you missed any of it I strongly invite you to go to and listen to some of the Prophets and Apostles speak. It was full of revelation and the spirit testified constantly. It was great I truly enjoyed all 10 hours of it. It was just what I needed to motive me to be the best I can be. I cannot wait for the next one. Yesterday we got the chance to head out to Cuba! Cuba New Mexico! It is about an hour and a half from here. We went up there with the High Range Elders for a baptismal interview. I had the chance to interview a 10 year old girl who is well prepared for her baptism. While we were there we got a lot of pictures. Some of which I attached here. Mini donkeys and giant fire pits. All the fun stuff of Cuba. We ate at the best Mexican restaurant ever on the way back. All in all a good day. That is my week! Pretty much top to bottom! If you are wondering about R don't worry! I am still going to give the full update in my miracle at the end of this email. love you all!!!

Quotes of the Week:

"You can have what you want, or you can have something better."
"An unforgiving heart harbors needless pain."
"To forgive is not to condone."
"No one goes his way alone."
"You are always a leader and you are always a follower."
"Happy marriages are meant to last forever."
"Let love conquer pride."
"Choose the harder right not the easier wrong."
"We know it, but do we believe it?"
"Our commitment to the Lord cannot be part time."
"Fatherhood requires sacrifice."
"Heavenly Father will not force us into heaven."
"We carry within ourselves the substance of divinity."
"Life must be understood backward, but lived forward."
"To be worthy does not mean to be perfect."
"Opposition enables choice."
"The Lord didn't make it easy, He made it possible."
"Some things can only be learned by faith."
"The resurrection changes heartbreak to hope."
"We get credit for trying not succeeding."
"The Lord blesses those who want to improve."
"God's character is not to abandon us."
"Heaven is cheering you on."

Spiritual Experience of the Week:
General Conference easily wins this week. I felt the spirit of God testify to me that the people who spoke truly are called of Him. They testified of the Savior and his Atonement. I know without a doubt that this church has been restored by a loving Heavenly Father, to prepare the world for the second coming of the Messiah and to prepare the children of God to return to the presence of Him who created us. 

Miracle of the Week:
The update of R. Here we go. So he made incredible progress. Every time we go to teach him, which is everyday, he has questions for us. By the end of the lesson he gives us hugs and high fives saying they we answered perfectly and that it all makes sense to him. He bore testimony that this is Christ's church and that he has finally found the truth. He came to 4 sessions of conference. And loved them all! He truly felt the spirit of God touch his heart. He is prepared for his baptism that is now set for the 23rd of April. He is an inspiration not only to us, but to the whole zone and all who meet him. We are so excited to continue to teach him and help him in anyway that we can. It will be a great experience. He is great.

Spiritual Thought of the Week:
I attached a link to a talk by one of the members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. He spoke about the importance of Priesthood keys and the Authority of the Priesthood today. It was powerful and one of my favorites of the conference. I invite all to watch or re-watch it, and to record the thoughts and impressions that the Lord puts into your heart.

I love you all!!

Elder Carruth

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Week 46

Another week has come and quickly passed here in the wonderful world of New Mexico. I am starting to think that time will never really slow down again. Not just in mission life but for the rest of my life. But that is a good thing I guess. If time is slow it means you are bored. Being bored is boring. Anyway! This week was a great one! We didn't have the success we were hoping for but we saw miracles that motivated us and kept us going! So let me begin with a funny story. A couple weeks ago I ran out of mission money due to some medical expenses and the ever increasing price of razors... I had a lot of March left to survive on. While we were at walmart last week a person we had never met before gave each of us $10! It was such a tender mercy from the Lord. Easy to overlook but I know that I was blessed. Then on Easter we got baskets from out WML. In the basket was a $15 gift card to smiths. THE LORD IS GOOD! I love being a missionary. The zone has been facing a lot of opposition lately. It has been rough across the board. But good things are abound in the work. Last week Elder Summers and I chose a street to go knock. When we got there there we very few houses and even fewer cars. But we chose it prayerfully so nevertheless we went forth. Almost every house had someone in it. And we even found a couple people to say we can come back! It was really cool to watch the Lord prepare a street for us even when it looked vacant. We had a really cool miracle this week. The High Range Elders found someone for us to teach. His name is R. Remember that name he will be in many emails to come. We went over there for the first lesson and he told us that he has read the Book of Mormon 8 times and the bible more than that. I have only read it 3 times so he is doing pretty good. Anyway he told us that he has a testimony of Joseph Smith and when we started talking about baptism he was worried. He recounted a story of his previous baptism which involved a 3 day test of questions and scenarios. It was hard for him. We explained the qualifications for baptism and he said "That is a huge weight off my shoulders! I am already there." He is so ready for the gospel!! I will continue this story in my miracle of the week! He is awesome though. We taught a few lessons over the weekend. Nothing really extraordinary though. We are struggling to find investigators who will progress. We are working on that though!! It will be good! We will teach the world of the Restoration!! Easter was a bitter sweet day. It was a great day for the most part though. It was wonderful to focus on the Savior and His Resurrection. It is my testimony that without that act of love from Him we would not have the opportunity to return to Heavenly Father. Our Savior broke the bands of death that we may live forever. What a great gift that is to us. And what hope that brings to me and my family. I testify that the Savior lives, He loves us and has sacrificed all for us. In Him we may find new life. Easter dinner was amazing! Our Bishop and his wife fed us. They are wonderful people and send pictures to our moms when we go there. I am sure they love that. It was at the close of Easter Sunday that we received the bad news. One of the Sisters in our zone has been having really bad pains and has been to the ER once already. We got the news Sunday that President is sending her home to get checked out. It was extremely sad for all of us. I hate losing missionaries. I love them all so much and want them to succeed. It is hard for me to see the other missionaries so sad but we all know that the Lord has a plan for her. All things happen for a reason. I know that to be true. That was pretty much how the week ended. I love you all! More than you know! And more than that the Lord loves you too.

Spiritual Experience of the Week:

The first lesson we had with R was powerful. The spirit was there testifying to us all that the words we spoke are true. R could feel it as well and he loved it. I love the peaceful and motivation feelings that come through feeling the spirit. It is moments like that that we live for as missionaries. 

Miracle of the Week:
Remember R? Do you? Good here we go. So we taught him last night and it was a really good lesson on the Restoration. At the end I invited him to be baptized on the 30th of April. He paused for a moment before saying "Of course! I am excited!" Then he pulled out his phone and put it in his calendar. He then asked "What time would it be at?" It was so cool because no one responds like that unless they have truly been prepared by the Lord. What a miracle for us. A gift from God. He will do so amazing in the gospel. 

Spiritual Thought of the Week:
With the approach of General Conference this weekend I would like to extend a promise to all of you. If you will watch a session of conference with questions in your heart, anything from does God exist to is the Book of Mormon true, I promise you, as a representative of the Savior Jesus Christ, that you will get answers to your prayers. You will feel of Heavenly Fathers love for you in abundance and feel the comfort will all search for in life. It is a time for revelation, a time to learn, and a time to feel the spirit of God. I pray that we all take this opportunity to draw close to the Savior.

Pic: Me and Elder Summerhays doing service.

Love you all!!

Elder Carruth