Monday, August 31, 2015

Merry One Year Mark!‏

I have now been out on a mission more than a year now, Dude what the heck man!, Horribly slow but super quick year.

I was able to see that video Lacey is so cute =p, Also I love you To Emma! Even though you probably need a bath =p

So the story on my ears is after that email I sent like a half hour later it like half way popped and has continued to do little pops ever since. I tried everything to pop those! But ya they pop a little here and there but I either don't notice it or it's gone.
This week has been a week; but it has also been a good week. I never did get the email about district meeting, I had to call the Zone leaders and they told me what they thought the topic was, it ended up being on the Holy Ghost and I have been learning Loads about that and how important it is and so that was easy.
I went over to Alpena on a trade off right after that. Oh man that was super eventful! I got to their apartment (knowing they only had like 3 real investigators) and I ran straight to their area book to find out what happened to all of those people I taught. After I found them all in a weird place not where they were supposed to be we went and did work as they planned. We had some awesome miracles like door knocking into a guy who said he read the book of mormon and when I asked the golden question (which every one strikes out on when it comes to that) " Did you pray to know if it was true" he didn't strike out, He told me he did and found out it is the word of God and told me all about the living apostles and..... Cool miracle
That night I got to go down to Barton City to see a family, they were shocked to see me! ED (I picked him up as a investigator and was baptized shortly after I left, he went to the temple 8 days ago) and I talked loads. I before I left wanted to give him a tie, but never had the chance. I realized that I got a chance again and before I left I took the tie off my neck (it being one Grandpa Crockett gave me, it being a tie off of the Glory rack not just my regular tie rack) told him who gave it to me and why it was important to me and gave him it.
We planned to contact some of the former's I taught the next day. It was my one year mark and I was back to where I started (if you don't count MTC) We went to Book of Mormon study at the church house and several other people was in shock to see me. We got a call from L asking for a blessing and so we went right after. She is a saint who is bound to her wheel chair, she's the one who would feed us weekly and have us over for FHE since we didn't have a family. She went to the temple to do endowments. It's funny the first time I met her was a few days after she went to the temple and was crazy sick and I gave her a blessing. 
This time she was again very sick and just came back from the temple almost the same situation but not as bad this time. She wouldn't open her eyes when we came in until she recognized my voice and then she said "that's familiar" and looked. She asked me to give the blessing again. I told her next year when she goes to the temple it might not be so easy to get me back for the blessing after her temple trip.=p That several hour drive one way is not that good for her.
We were straight up guided every where else that day to people who I worked with and taught. We waited in a parking lot for a referral we got and while sitting in the car L a less active who I reactivated (for like a 2-3 month period from what I know) parked right next to us and walked away I jumped out of the jeep and talked to her. After that We had a appointment with some potential. That was cool! 
We pulled up to the house and I immediately knew the guy because I talked to him with Elder A for like 13 minutes on the door step before he turned us down, this time he didn't. 
And then we tried a former that was brought into my mind a few streets down who was like "where did you Mormons go did you take a vacation!" set up appointment. Went to CJ' house to try him and his neighbor C D who we taught both. (he was the one my trainer chastised me for bearing my testimony and mentioning temples  when we PC'd him) He jumped up and down when he saw me and told me that he got a new job and now has regular hours ( so we can finally meet with him) 
And he had loads of questions for me (since he really felt the spirit when I bore testimony that day and we bonded quickly and knew he could trust me) I answered his questions teaching him the plan of salvation. He was hilarious to watch! He would jump up and down and throw his hands up in the air and say" ahahahaha THAT IS SO COOL! THAT MAKES SO MUCH SENSE!" and he would go from pacing to kneeling to sitting next to me looking at me like a 5 year old child. =p He was really felling the spirit so I shot the invitation to be baptized. He then swiftly kneeled in front of me, and immediately started questioning why his first baptism wasn't good enough very sincerely. But since he had the spirit with him so much I just told it to him like I would a 10 year old and the spirit told him it was true and he accepted a date to be baptized. I told him I can't be here to teach him but I will be back next week and he jumped on that day for a appointment, and then committed me to come to his baptism (or else he would hunt me down =p). His neighbor then walked in and we set up a appointment with him too and was totally cool that I wasn't gonna be there.
We then were led to Bro B a Less Active who I was working with and taught him really "installed hope" in him that the Holy Ghost would make his life better and he committed to everything we shot after he had that Hope that things would be better.
I then got in the Ring with John again, I know he has a testimony but won't commit to baptism, He told me he does believe Joseph was a prophet But couldn't get him to commit.

I don't have time to write more I'm going golfing with members in a few minutes. I had several way cool experiences there in Alpena we were literally led place to place where I would have the best impact being everywhere exactly when I needed to be since I only had a little time.

I am going to Grand Rapids on Sep14 because that General authority will be coming, We are having a Big MLC with him. I will finally see my MTC comp! And then the next day I need to be in Mount pleasant for training from the general Authority. Driving FOR DAYS!

Well Bye I love you have a good week and day!
Don't get shot!
- Elder Truman Rex Crockett

Monday, August 24, 2015

"BACK"!?!?! WHAT DO YOU MEAN?????‏

I have been so busy this week! I have had a million things on my plate and alot of things really on my nerves. I was asked to give a 20 minute talk last week at church so yesterday I gave it. I had trade offs in Traverse city and district meeting the next day leaving me with only my 1 hour of comp study to prepare a hour and a half (30-45 minutes of it teaching) of things to do and teach. I got the material i needed for district meeting from the AP's late.... and it's even later this week ha ha!
But this week has also been alot of fun too. Since I am a district leader I got to go on trade offs with the Zone leaders and I went over to Traverse City monday night. I had so much Fun! It was super healthy for me! I had like a cultural/musical/educational/spiritual/physical event while I was there. It was super healthy to be around a missionary who isn't brand new either and I could actually learn things from, I haven't had that in... ages! We woke up super early in the morning to go to the beach and we ran several miles in the sand and watched the sun rise and skipped rocks. It was pretty cute =p. I loved being over there it was like California but not as big of waves, the city is more organized and there was loads of people to P.C. and invite to learn.
While I was over there we had lunch at a chiropractors office and while we talked Elder C brought up that I have shoulder pains in my right shoulder and have had them for ever. (I can honestly remember in elementary school my right shoulder hurting, never my left always my right. Even when I carry my shoulder bag on my left shoulder my right one will hurt). The member jumped up immediately and took me into his work room and had me sit on a chair and felt my shoulder. Then he had me stand on a thing that layed me down flat face first and he made my back pop loads. Put some thing on me that felt like a massage machine of some sort, stood me back up and layed me down back to the table and then like tried to snap my neck it seemed like.
 My neck popped so much! I would never be comfortable with any one trying to bend my neck that much who didn't do that as their job. He then sat me back on the chair underhooked my arm and grabbed my wrist and jerked my arm causing my shoulder to pop loud enough for the whole building to hear. He then casually said as he walked away "ok it's back in it's socket".  BACK!!!????!!!?? WHAT DO YOU MEAN!??! Are you telling me I have been living my life with my right shoulder dislocated?!! I didn't see him after to clarify so I am still confused. For realzies?!!?? "BACK"? I haven't had shoulder pain since, It was even for freezies.=p
That night we had a lesson with one of their investigators, she recently had 5 people die who she was close to in the past 2 weeks. I went in there with that being just about all I knew about her and comforted her and talked to her. I then realized what I could teach to help her. Apparently they have never truly went in with a 'we are here to teach' type of approach and she would normally ask questions and never really had to start to teach or ever ask her questions to check for understanding. But when I got there that changed, it weird-ed her out alot and wasn't what she was used to, but she learned alot. 
We tried to set her on date that night and she wouldn't stay on topic when ever we asked. A few days ago I found out that she was in like shock because they have never done that before and her next lesson she said she didn't like it and so One of the Zone leaders talked me down in that next lesson saying I didn't know what I was doing to try and save her as a investigator. He immediately knew what he said was wrong and that guilt-ed him for days until he broke and had to call me and beg for forgiveness. It was really admirable that he did that because it really wasn't a big deal at all and I would have never known, but he was honest and tried his best to repent, and even told the investigator that he was wrong about what he said and defended me the next time. It would have never effected me if he never told me but I learned good from it.
I taught district meeting, it wasn't even bad it's a pretty easy crowd to teach. I was a little worried the night before since I would be doing worse than preaching to the choir I would be preaching to the preachers but all I had to do was get them to talk and I learned too. I LOVE having senior missionaries in my district! It's the best being Neighbors with the Ekins!

I got this sick bike this week! One of the people I put on date last week when we came over next gave me his bike. It is Motobecan. From Europe:It's a awesome Hot Rod red color, Road bike, that has a comfy seat and is feather light and super fast! It's even my size. I can go faster than my companion can while he is standing sprinting and I am sitting. I love it! It has mud flaps on both so my white shirt doesn't get dirty, brand new tires and rims and breaks. I love it!
But I am seriously behind on everything because Of district meeting and have to write that 20 minute talk, Today is the first time this week I actually had my hour personal study to study what I wanted too. And I didn't remember what I wanted to study... The talk I gave went good. It's funny I decided to not use a conference talk in it; and right after me our branch mission leader spoke and he used that talk that I decided against after I even printed it out, I guess what ever God wants to be said will be said no matter what.
Elder Anderson from the 70 is coming to our mission, hes the one who gave the talk on not only knowing the dance steps but hearing the music too.

Well I gotta head Out
Bye I love you
have a good day!
Don't get shot!

- Elder Truman Rex Crockett

Monday, August 17, 2015

Prayer, Holy Ghost

So my ear has been improving little by little. I expected it to do one big pop like it would when you change altitudes but no it keeps baby popping but it doesn't bother me anymore and I can hear well. Ha ha speak of the devil It just baby popped=p
This week has been a week and I have a million things I would like to say about this week.
First of all I had Macaroni and cheese for 6 days in a row and I didn't cook any of it, that all came from members and Elder and sister Ekins. And the one time I thought I was free and had just a little time to cook up something I ransacked the fridge to only find frozen macaroni  in spaghetti sauce..... I made sure to buy loads of real food today because I am never eating macaroni with hotdogs again!
Mom I totally agree with you on what you said about kids in sacrament meeting. One lesson I learned down in Holt on that same subject is the fact that Jesus taught us that children (of such) is the kingdom of heaven. And people if people want to be in a place away from kids in church they don't ideologically understand the gospel or humans. I mean if you were a 3 foot thing who's feet don't touch the ground in a uncomfortable chair, and every one you love won't pay attention to you and some old dude is saying loads of things you don't understand I would flip a biscuit too and be distracting.
During personal study i kept hearing a noise. IT BOTHERED ME, and it brought out the environmental scientist in me. I searched until I found the kitchen sink leaking and I couldn't fix it so I got a gallon jug and put it under to catch the water for my water bottle. I came back at the end of the day to find the jug half full and full of fruit flies.... i then made a contraption so water would flow through small holes so flies couldn't get in. Now the only struggle is getting my companion to stop moving the nozzle and letting all of that water go to waste and killing some widows sacrifice to build the kingdom of God.
I found a emergency escape ladder in our apartment while i looked through all of the junk! I could have SOOOOO used that during High school! #XFSWWF!

My very first day here as a District leader I had to give 3 baptismal interviews. I had no time to prepare at all. When  we arrived at the church house a few minutes prior to the investigators I frantically searched the small branch building for a Preach my Gospel. I then didn't have enough time to read it so I went out side and finished it after they arrived. 
Elder Ekins told me I have a half a hour to get all of them interviewed so Elder and Sister Ekins could make it down to Detroit for a temple session. I am super glad I read PMG before I went in there!  I don't doubt that if I didn't they would have eventually gone inactive. 
The first teenage girl came in with me; and I heard from the zone leaders the night before on the phone their "conversion story" and how they have such a strong testimony of the gospel. I then started trying to get an understanding of her testimony and get her to tell me about her conversion story. I am super glad I read that in PMG!!! She eventually opened up after many kind follow up questions and told me that she has been praying to know if these things are true but have never received a answer. 
I then continued to ask question and help her understand how prayers are answered. She eventually opened up even more and told me the story about when she went to girls camp a few weeks ago and she felt the spirit really strong and it made her cry and testified of the truth being taught. I also got her to tell me a story she had never told anyone about being touched by the Holy Ghost (after she understood who it was and what it does) it brought her to tears right then and there and I made sure that I pointed out that to her. 
I told her that the Holy Ghost has answered her prayers and that she needs to always remember that and cherish that moment when it told her truth and to stay true to that and live accordingly throughout her life no matter what garbage might come. When I was done with the first girl It was over 40 minutes and I brushed off Elder Ekins getting on my case for going to make him late and finished the other 2 interviews. I had to do the same thing with all of them, and help them all recognize they did receive an answer to their prayers and they all had different stories to go along with it.
My first night here we got locked out of the apartment at 10:27 pm Because I didn't know my companion never unlocked the bottom door knob. I had nothing on me except a tie clip and I was going against a schlauge..... We knocked on the Ekins door and E. Ekins came out to help. An hour and a half later of him trying and not letting me have a go I got his screw driver and hammer from him the thickest screw driver out of the 6 he was using hit the screw driver with the hammer until it bent the metal plate on the frame. and I was able to crank the thing bending the wood slightly popping the metal latch in the door. I dropped the screwdriver on the floor, hugged E. Ekins and went to bed.

We baptized all three of them this week. It's super interesting because more than 6 months ago I was here and I have knocked on their door more than once and was turned away. I also tried some other former investigator like 3 times to have them never answer their door, we tried them this week and we got in and I related to them super well. The investigator was like " I loved this pamphlet! it was so cool I read it, but I had to read this page like 5 times" he then tried moving on. 
I stopped him immediately and asked follow up questions to find out he really felt the Holy Ghost on that page and read it over and over again because he loved how it felt. I taught him who the Holy Ghost is and how it does things and he felt it again and got super pumped. I then going completely on faith because it was bringing things to his "remembrance" and asked so what is it telling you to do, and he was like (without me suggesting or bringing it up or anything) "I think it wants me to be baptized, can I do that?" "UMM.... YEs PLEASE!". The Prayer, Holy Ghost lesson hasn't been and isn't a cure all principal from preach My Gospel to teach but here it has been. I have another story about it too but I don't have time, Sad thing is I have never seen a missionary teach it the way PMG wants us too.

I have never seen a 70 year old man as crazy as Elder Ekins! I love it! I have never seen a man of his age leaning back in chairs like a teenager and making the jokes he does! I love it it's like a Old man Will! Hes such a comedian, but it's not like regular people humor it's like Will humor ha ha! The Senior missionaries are the best forealzies if they weren't here the area and the teaching pool would be rubbish!
Elder J my new companion has avoided door knocking alot with me, and I strive for the 3 hours a day rule. We got let in a house this week and picked up a new investigator and I found out that that was the first time in his 3 months of being on a mission he was ever let in, or had success while door knocking. 3 months.... I guess thats what happens when you avoid it.
I gotta go!
Love you
Don't get shot!
- Elder Truman Rex Crockett

Monday, August 10, 2015

Back to the Boonies

I had a guy lean out of his window this week pointing at us and yelled "NERRRRRDS!" I loved it I can't stop laughing about it.=p

So we got our transfer calls, I am leaving Holt. They are shipping me back up north, I am going to be district leading in Gaylord. Which is sick because I already know and love the senior missionaries up there, I even know what bed will be mine and where it is. My new companion is Elder H's MTC companion so I will be "Greenie Busting" him. Elder H got called to be a trainer =p (who did that). I am super excited for me going on trade offs back to Alpena. 

Sorry I havn't read any emails I am printing them off because I have to be on the transfer van in like a half hour.

I have never had a day of church here like I did yesterday, It was insane! We had 5 investigators at church and 2 less actives. I was bouncing all over the place trying to handle the situation, and the funny part was we were going to have another investigator there but his oven caught fire the night before and he wasn't able to come because he had to wait for his land lord. We had it set up perfectly though for a less active to take him to church, the less active came any ways which was sweet! Church was the best, I have never seen so much "fruit" from my labors.

It is one of the most embarrassing things to have to fill up your tank of gas on sunday in a white shirt and tie with a name tag....... never happening again.

I was thinking and the biggest thing for the whole church and the biggest word is Atonement. But the word that we need to do the most when it comes to all things in the gospel is Prepare. There is not a aspect of the gospel that doesn't include our need for preparation, every single thing whether it be church, reading scritpures, the spirit world, kingdoms of glory, atonement, all of it deals with preparation because we need to prepare for all in order to be able to receive, learn, use, obtain, everything we need to prepare for and if we aren't preparing...then the gospel and atonement is useless. Harsh way to say it but I don't have time to pretty it up.

This week T S. (the one who coughed up blood) moved to new York, up and out of the blue, we got to see him before he left and we are in contact but we are now trying to pass that rope on to some other missionaries. I was super impressed when I taught him last week he has retained everything from what we taught him.

T K. (the answers to prayers guy who we door knocked into) we have gotten the members to talk to and one of the members who lives a Frisbee throw away from him has now invited him over for dinner and there is great plans to fellowship him in and help him with his WoW things to get him baptized. His Wife is wanting to meet with us and has questions for us. 
I don't know if I ever told you about what he did and how he got answers to his prayers but to be quick he prayed several times a day to know if the book of Mormon is true and the spirit really "wrought change" as the BOM says and he loved it and every one around him loved it.  He got real mad a t God years back and really demanded that God give him a sign that he truly is there and loves him, He demanded that he see a shooting star, he waited for like 3 hours never happened. 
11 years later and after the spirit was working on him because of his prayers, he remembered that and went out side and prayed for forgiveness since he could feel God's love and as he finished his prayer a shooting star crossed the sky.=p He also one day was super beat and tired and he just prayed that he wouldn't have to go out and water his garden because of the way he was feeling. His wife told him that prayer wouldn't be answered and showed him the weather forecast to prove it. He then went to bed and when he woke up he went outside to have his whole yard and roof drenched in water and none of his neighbors lawn or house was even touched by any of the rain.

I realize I havn't been a horrible trainer, yes there are somethings I would change about what I did to help Elder H, but I think the biggest thing I did was show him an example and install in him how we need to work as missionaries, and teach him how he can learn how to teach, How to keep good records so other missionaries don't beat the same path you did without knowing. I did a lot of other things but that's whats on my mind right now.

I made sure to finish my tub of "death by chocolate" icecream before I left, and ya. I still have a cough, I can't hear out of my right ear the best for some reason (no clue why, I have hydrogen peroxided it several times), I am leaving my bike here even thought I know the bikes up there won't compare to the comfort of my seat, but I would be a dirt bag if I took the seat or bike. I am going to miss driving the Chevy cruz, the thing is way nice, but it might be fun to be in the jeep again even though it does have blind spots. 
I realized that I never opened that thing that susie sent me in the mail. I struggled for ages debating on whether it was candy or whether it was home made soap, I broke last night and opened it up and took a bite out of it. I still don't know if it's candy or soap =p. 
I have like a 4 hour road trip today back up to Gaylord, I am so excited to see the Whites and The Ekins! I will be a district leader so I am now able to use other methods to contact people, so I am super excited and I am already formulating a list of people I have lost contact with (LA's/ INV's) to get them back on path. Weren't we promised in like February we were getting Ipads next month? what ev my trainer was told that at his year mark and he's long gone. I didn't get loads of pictures of people here I didn't have time and church was way to fast paced for me this week.

Well, Im off Pray that my ear pops so I can hear fully again,
Bye I love you have a good day
don't get shot!

- Elder Truman Rex Crockett

Monday, August 3, 2015

The best week of my Mission

Last week I forgot to mention about the investigator TK he told us "yah in my time in Salt lake I would have gone to your guys church if some one invited me" How many people are like that in the world?

It's weird to say and might be pretty weird to you to think about, but this week has been the best week of my mission. And I have loads of reasoning for that, when at first it was the worst ha ha.
To start I went to play ultimate Frisbee last Monday for a few hours with other missionaries and that was so much fun, it was like 90 degrees (by the way 109 is the top this week from what I saw and experienced) shorter games for more water breaks. I over hear one of my zone leaders say "I would wrestle any one here" That was music to my ears Because I have been planning how I could coax him into a match. 
I darted over and called him out and we went to the middle of the field and went. He played like a true wrestler but when it came to a gentleman's game of cards he was an aggressive wrestler who was unknowing of my submissive tricks; half guard to closed guard using the weight on me that he was applying, foot on hip, hand to face, leg around and jerk your isolated arm back. TELL ME YOU MISS YOUR MOM!!! (just kidding I was really tempted to yell that though as he tapped out)
That was healthy for me

Sad thing was Elder H got hit in the back of the head and the next day he couldn't see out of his left eye , he panicked after it was still happening after my shower, I gave him a blessing and he immediately strode to the toilet and threw up loads. His Eyesight was back moments later. And was sick the rest of the day But we still worked because of his functioning ability.

The next day he was good, I was throwing up at the toilet but not from dehydration right into over hydration like he was. I got WAY sick this week and I am still coughing up big hunks of moosaka from it.  mucus is gross. 
That day That I threw up I went to the half mission pday in mt pleasant and that was a real adventure, I loved it and had loads of fun playing water kickball and ultimatefrisbee again and talking to loads of people, but that was tough on me I was already sunburned from Monday but after that I was super sunburned on top of that, I had to sit down and let my stomach settle in fear of upchucking.
After that I was torn to pieces and passed out for the day in seconds during our dinner break and didn't wake up.  Elder H phoned loads of potentials to stay obedient (funny we talked about that would be our plan if we ever got sick and one day later. who knew!). The next day was Bad until I called Sis J and got her recommendation for medicine. It wasn't until night I was able to stand enough to door knock, But I did teach I just had a chain smoker voice and it would hurt my throat a little. That night I planned with my winter coat and gloves on,  right into my winter blankets and out.

Ya life pretty much sucked except for our lesson with TK again! That lesson was even better than others because he had more spiritual witnesses of the truth of these things to the point of Miracles happening now and he accepts it and was at church this week again. ill write home about those maybe.  

And then the next morning I was able to have my voice back. That is when it all changed I started practice teaching with Elder H on aspects that he needed to improve on and I came to this realization, I have not been the best trainer. Yes we are really good friends and work well together (confidence is the bigger thing in that) but I've taught him a lot about how to do missionary work and have lead by example but I have neglected the whole aspect PMG  topic of "Prayer, and Holy Ghost". 
We hit that topic Hard because I have seen it for 11 months now of our investigator pool growing large but falling later. I could spend a hour on this principal now because I believe it is the most important one on the teaching record.  Because all else can be taught like I have been using all the teaching skills and by the spirit but if they aren't sincerely earnestly seeking the truth they fall. 
And that principal I now learned is not sufficiently taught by moroni 10:3-5 alone but you have to use the scriptures in the hidden box on the next page along side it. Or they won't under stand what type of commitment and dedication it will take to find that answer to prayers. I could say loads about this I gained a really strong testimony of this. 

I don't have time for the other half of stuff I wanted to say but that was all the points. Basically in total this was the best week of my mission because I broke foolish traditions of the people I have learned from and have learned loads in the process (just like it says "traditions are the chains of hell" you know if Elder W could find that verse I would tell you But I believe it's more of traditions can be chains of hell, or turn into the...)

I wish I had more time I have only scratched part of the words I want to express and I've gone skimpy in this part comparatively.

Love you all!
Don't get shot!
- Elder Truman Rex Crockett