We welcome all to follow along as Elder Nelson shares with us his experiences as a full time missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. These are truly they best 2 years FOR his life!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Hope you had a great Christmas!

Dear Family,

Thank you so much!!! :)? seriously... that you value my words so much... it gives me so much strength and confidence in myself. thank you for wanting to write it down and keep it. I wish I could write down and read everything you guys said to me. I feel..... ah... i just cant explain what its like to be valued so much? I would ask why but i know why, its cuz you LOVE me. Just like Heavenly Father loves us? He's given us that gift so we can know what its like to give that love to others... i literally can't think about you guys without almost crying because.. honestly... I don't deserve it, and it makes it that much more sweet... I'm so blessed. And when we are blessed, we must give back!! And i feel like im not giving enough all the time... but then when I read the words you wrote in this email... I realized. Wow, im all the way over here!? i gave up my whole life, im with so many ppl ive NEVER met or known, just trying every day to serve God. Wow, we are ALL doing so much better than we think :) 

Christmas sounds amazing! I totally knew u guys were gonna have lobster a and steak for christmas eve... tell brad im so flippin jealous. i miss THAT so much hahaha :)
in the pictures i saw, bryce looks like a BEAST! man, i so miss him... i wish i could be there to see him grow... i love him so much its not even funny. 

So glad you went to saras farewell!! thank you! glad you got to see the rowes! :) :) she is gonna be great! she is a rock!! cant believe she is leaving so soon! and brooke has been through so much i cant believe she is still going a mission! shes incredible!! ha wow, same mission as marie! thats nuts! :) SO COOL! how is marie doing? 

The pants are PERFECT! I LOOOOOOOOOVE them. seriously, ive been wanting brown pants! and they are perfect! i have these SWEET! brown shoes that langi gave me, ha. so i only wear them on special occasions:) and ya im wearing the green sweater right now, its perfect! :) u did good mom!! im so good! i have the freaking best family ever! just like in my setting apart blessing the love of my family will get me through the hard times of my mission. You guys are the flippin best! we are becoming a family of ZION! :) 

YES! all sisters!! :) (In his district) we all get a long great, they are all awesome obedient missionaries, and the sister training leaders are in my district, so ya... its really actually nerve racking to do district meeting ha. But its going well. Its great.  

New years i think we are going to Bro. Lewis's :) btw his daughter Jessica is bringing a package home for you guys! ha, its just all my letters that i kept, and some book of mormons in other languages, and then theres some other stuff and , a note to you and a letter for dad and then a letter for the graves :) 

Facebook? we have an hour each day to get on :) and the goal is too friend all our members friends and ppl we meet and to send em messages and clips and stuff that will teach them the principles. Its so flippin cool!! :) we are just beginning. Early next year we will be getting tablets, so like... by my b day i think :) 

I really think I could stay another transfer, it would be a shock, but not a surprise ya know? so its like... 60/40 if i go or not :) crazy... jan 18th we will see :) 

okay!!!! :) the moment we've all been waiting for when i try to type EVERYTHING I REMMEBER FROM THE WEEK!:) SO MOM IS PROUD OF ME :) hahah

so last p day, we had christmas conference at fort de soto beach in st. Pete :)! it was way fun, These two hawaiian Elders sang, and holy crap it sounded so flippin good, Presidnt Cuisick found out that I sang in church and he asked me to sing, well i had nothing prepared, so i grabbed my toko Elder Langi and we sang im trying to be like jesus and it kinda sucked but its okay cuz ppl love us hahahah jk. But we had a ugly sweater contest and we would stand up in front of all the missionaries and they would cheer for who they want, well... elder shupe and I got first and second and another sister from our district got third. When I stood up, i took the candy canes that were stuck in the little stockings (idk if you saw the sweater sister ball made me) but I threw them out to ppl, kinda bribed them haha. it was awesome!! :) we won and got 15$ gift cards to Chipotle... ya it was freaking awesome... 

got to meet a bunch of new missionaries, and man, it was so cool. I met another sister from Springville! Hannah packard? the basketball girl! her older sister is in the mission! way cool!

Tuesday was christmas EVE! The hawkins took us out to outback! It was so flippin good, we got ribs! oh! and earlier that day Sis ball had us over with one of her old friends who is a psychologist, has a Ph.D and he hypnotized Elder Shupe into liking vegtables! :) it was way cool! ha. anyway after we went to dinner we took some pictures with em, they have an awesome family, im gonna get them and then send em to you guys! then we went to the Lewis' and ate more and watched mr. Crugers christmas:) it was actually really good! and Dana and Madison showed up and we talked about the birth of christ, and Bro Lewis bore his testimony and asked elder Shupe and I to speak and we expressed our gratitude to them and shared testimony, such a powerful night. SOOOO grateful, and If you were praying that I would feel your love during this time of year, well your prayers were answered! 

Christmas morning we had district meeting! and i didnt know what to do, i wanted everyone to feel the love and spirit of christmas... but still feel missionary spirit. So we talked a litttle about our families and christmas at home and then we shared good experiences, and then I read them all the story of the three trees ;) they... LOVED!! it . they want a copy of it :) and after we talked , and the spirit was so strong, and it just went perfectly! well then we tried to get on base...lost my wallet, and then like 2 hours later, we got on cuz sis. belisle picked us up and got us on... well she fed us and then we skyped... awesome... played some fun games :) called... headbands? and another... called 5 seconds i think :) way fun. Then to the Giboneys and we made homemade candy! her parents are from sacramento! Lincoln Loomis area :) they are so funny! it was such a good day. WE GOT SO MUCH GOODIES.

Thursday was our adjust CLEAN day... and i realized i really... lost my wallet... and i said like a billion prayers... well that day kinda sucked so we'll go to friday...

friday! we got on the computer... and i had a message on facebook from a lady in our apt complex saying " I found your wallet what # are you ill give it to you?" 

WE JUST ABOUT FREAKED OUT! so the lord answers our prayers! it was a miracle... that night we played basketball with the elders quorum and their friends trying to get some others there to meet and start teaching. its been a great finding tool in the past. 

Saturday we went to the Giboneys again and had some bomb food and actually got a LESSON in, w bro giboney! jsut a mormon message... but man, he is such a stud! he will come eventually! :) 

then sunday!.... ahhh i needed sunday... I needed the sacrament... it was a rough week minus christmas, all our ppl left or just werent responding... and I was just struggling with confidence... WELL! kenny!!! came to church!! he jsut SHOWED UP! looking GREAT! he is the friend of bro Freestone and man... it was so awesome! 

AND this random guy was coming home from a trip and literally just walked in and sat down! his name is billy and he is really intersted... we are so excited to teach him! President Cusick spoke and it was so good! missionary work is literally HUGE RIGHT NOW! so grateful to be a missionary now! 

sorry i forgot something hilarious that happened...we were riding out bikes... finding... and we stopped a light to decide where to go, and we hear behind us...

"Jehovah witness! (in this FLAMING VOICE!) hey!... SMILE! ( and he pulls out his camera and takes a couple pictures! well we were like... sweet! and we smiled and I was like "Hey we are actually mormons!" and the guy puts his hands up and goes "praise him..." and i was like no MORMONS! and he goes "praise him" again, and they drive off... it was hilarious :) hahaha

Anyway... I love you guys it was such a good week... I learned so much this week... but most of all... I learned it doesnt have to be some amazing break through and this huge change... it is simply the fact that we are ALL trying to make it... we are all the same, we are all accepted into the arms of christ, all we have to do is decide to get back on the path... and he will help :) I know my redeemer lives. And i know i am called of GOD :) 

Elder Nelson

Be not afraid; Only believe

Monday, December 23, 2013

It's Christmas time!

Dear Family!

LOVED that 12 days of christmas! fav. obviously the 3 trees! and OF COURSE im trying so hard to write in my journal! and i think you are right actually, about the whole making a list of things I wanna share w u on p day. U are right! we had an exchange with Elder Peters, one of the Assistants to the President and he showed us how he keeps a sticky note in each day of his planner and writes down things that happen during the day, RIGHT when they happen so when he writes in his journal he remembers. Ive been doing good in my journal! in my setting apart blessing it says be an avid journal writer so im keeping up!

Can't wait until karson gets his call.. holy cow. Also! will you please text shauna and get hummers email PLEASE!! i need to email him! did u hear Caleb broke his leg? how is katie hogge doing?? and what is Amber Rokovitz friends name who got called to Tampa?? Today we are going to a beach in St. Pete called Fort De soto for christmas conference:) super excited about that!

Monday we had p day! just stayed around south tampa, and we get free food from this place called the jerk hut:) its so flippin good. Mario is a member in our ward who recently was reactivated and he hooks us up! its jamaican food:) then that evening we taught a man named kenny with the Freestone family. They are one of our favorite families!! I love them so much! they have a great big house and they have 5 kids! hillarious! kenny is bro freestones friend and partway through the lesson Elder Peters (the AP) came and helped us teach! IT was awesome! Kenny expressed his feelings of being lost... and wants to know what god wants him to do. He said he would come to church (didnt) but its okay cuz we will meet with him soon! Tuesday we had the bulk of the exchange, elder peters came down with both of us, and we got a bunch of work done! he brought his mini van haha, so after being on FULL BIKE it was soooooooooo so so nice :) we went to tampa general hospital which is downtown and gave a woman a blessing and the chaplin who called us stayed and watched it with us and said she felt something. We are going to give her a book of mormon sometime :) then we met with a less active man and taught a lesson, and we tried to contact a referral. But the whole time we could just feel the spirit cuz of how awesome an example Elder Peters set for us. He told us his story about how he came on a mission and it was the coolest thing. Then after we went home so he could review the exchange with us and get ready to go. When he started talking he started off by saying... well.... and I was worried about what he would say... and then he began to tear up and say with emotion... I dont want to leave.... i love you guys... and you are doing such incredible things down here. I only have like two things to say, work on, and the rest are good things. I WAS BLOWN AWAY! I WAS LIKE ARE YOU SERIOUS!?!? he told us how much he cared about us, and complimented us on so many great things we are doing, i was just like... out of all the missionaries he knows and talks to, he can care this much about us? taught me a great lesson. we both told him how much we appreciate him and support him and man. We both want to be just like him. And I know that experience happened at the beginning of the week because the rest of the week had some ups and downs. Our lessons fell through a lot, and Alecia is leaving for a week... but the spirit keeps telling me, there are miracles on the other side! they are coming!

A family moved out of the ward on friday. The Johnsons. Elder Langi and I got really close to Bro. Johnson and he helped us SOOOO much. He is a resident at TGH (Tampa General Hospital) and still found time to come out on splitz and get us food and take us anywhere. Well, when we found out they were leaving we just had to help them. And see them, they did way too much for us, not to give back a little. Well we went over there and waited for Bro. Johnson to get home from work, helped pack up the trailor and ( bro Johnson came straight from work, in his scrubs, he's always in his scrubs) and then he tooks us out to get dinner. and afterward he tooks us to the church and before we left we got out gave him a hug and both gave him ties. I wrote a little note to them and we explained how much we appreciate and look up to him and EVERYTHING and he looked down and tried to talk and couldnt... he walked over to his truck and looked back and was like I can't talk... then he goes... (and its crazy cuz he ALWAYS says this) "if you guys ever need anything, food, a ride, ANYTHING... just call me... ill drive down from Cincinnati and pick u up. u just call me... and at their house in oklahoma they have a bunch of like boats and 4 wheelers and stuff and they said... "in all seriousness, when you are done w your mission come over, come visit and we'll go have some fun! so we are so going there!! :) 
Wednesday... we had a district meeting... and! well... im actually the distrcit leader now. So I was in charge of district meeting and WOW! i was sooo nervous! so nervous, but one of my BEST friends out here Elder Hawkes who is serving in the tampa 5th spanish ward, said its so cool cuz the spirit totally takes over. AND IT DID! the spirit totally took over and it was awesome! the spirit was so strong! Our district is all the missionaries in our ward which is Elder SHupe and I? AND ALLL SISTERS!! ha. its crazy! but that was a cool experience!

Saturday was the ward christmas party! :) soooooooo fun! we tried to organize a talent for the talent show but it just didnt work out, so we were in a couple other ones with some of the youth in the ward. IT was funny :) I cant wait til our familiy reuinions when we are all married? I bet our familiy can come up with some HILARIOUS ones! especially with megan in the fam now haha :)  The sweaters we got? Sis. Ball MADE THEM FOR US! mine had stockings all over it and there were pockets in the them and she put CANDY CANES IN them! so the kids would come up to me and ask for a candy cane ALL night! it was hilarious!

Sunday... well sunday was great. There were some great investigator s there and Alecia came:) she is leaving til next monday.  but I just KNOW! she is going to find the truth when she is ready. But yes, I sang a forgotten carol :) I was not his father... he was mine in sacrament meeting:) the Lewis' recorded it haha so im sure you'll see it eventually:) and yes I know I messed up in the end so just ignore that!! ha. I cant wait for you guys to meet the lewis' seriously you are going to LOVE them! :) ah okay I got to end now :) but I HOPE! Thats enough info for what happened.... OH!
one last experience that was a miracle...
We were riding our bikes tuesday night after our exchange with Elder Peters, and we saw a lady with a dog. so we stopped and talked to her... well she started explaing how she felt with religion... she was saying like " well i just feel like there are so many churches, wouldnt god just want us to be in one? God isnt found in so many places? he is not changing he is the same? and saying like I just want to know what the truth is, so thats why I havent gone to church in a long time" ELDER SHUPE AND I JUST ABOUT LOST OUR MINDS!!! SHE IS SO PREPARED so we will keep you updated on EStrella :) ( thats her name)
We saw the hess's at the christmas party and we are going to lunch with them on thursday :) 
We dont get to go to members houses that much, they are all working on getting investigators there still but it'll pick up soon! 

Favorite food so far? Bro. Johnson took us to get sushi a few months ago at this place called chef thai? SOOOO GOOD :) so ya... the food is the same haha:) bbq is bomb down here too :) Corn fritters? BOMB.com :) ! 

love you guys! see you in a few days:)!

Be not afraid;only Believe 

Elder Nelson

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I love this work!

December 10, 2013

One particular night... we were riding back.. and Elder Shupe’s bike broke...again... and that did it... we just sat there on the curb...and I said prayer after prayer in my heart... what. are. we. to. do?

well we kept going... we didnt handle every day the best... but we kept going... and this is what I give my testimony of, the fact that the Lord will speak to us. He does not leave us alone. And 99% of the time, it will come when we are humbled enough, and when we want it the most. And that is what happened. 

(the will of God- mormon message)
how are we to meet heavenly fathers high expectations?
willingness to accept and even seek correction

It came when I listened to a talk by Elder Christopherson about the currant bush that a farmer cut down, and bush seemed to have said, I was making so much progress, how could you do this to me? every plant in the garden ( all the other missionaries) will look down on me, i was making so much growth, how could you do this, I thought you were the gardener... over and over this week i said this to myself... and just like in the talk by Elder Christopherson and the mormon message, I knelt down in prayer, opened my scriptures and a notebook... and was ready to receive revelation... well as if he spoke the words to me... I was led to d and c 6:16, 35 and 36...telling me that i do not know his ways, he is the only one who knows my true intentions and desires... just like in the story... when he says, look little currant bush i am the gardner I know what i want you to be, and one day little bush (elder Nelson) you will say thank you mr gardner for loving me enough to cut me down.  well i was so grateful for this answer and as the days continued and the trials lingered, i go to my knees over and over... even today. and as I sat here writing to all of you. Wondering what to bear testimony of... The spirit came to me saying... Elder Nelson, I will make you into what you need to be, only those whom I love, I rebuke and chasten... So my testimony is we must all know that God will shape us into his tool, and I know that miracles are on the way... for me and elder shupe, for the Florida tampa mission, for whoever is reading this... and in the near future when we look back...  the bitterness will leave, the pain of the trial will go... and we will kneel down and say thank you Mr. Gardner for loving me enough to hurt me. 

If we want to become what we are to become, if we want to get stronger, if we want to get better, and reach the divine potential we are all aiming to, we must be torn down. We must be corrected, we must be chastened... or else we would just meander in our mediocrity... so we accept and obtain that correction. 

I know that the savior lives, I know that he speaks to us. I know he spoke to me. I know I am his song, and he has plans for me. I know that there are miracles on the way. I know it and will do all I can to help those come forth! 
The work is hastening all around the world. A marvelous work is about to come forth, and if we would like to be a part of it, and feel the endless joy of being one of his tools, we must be our BEST, these trials are how he transforms us into what we need to be. i love this work. The most important work we can be doing. We must find joy in the journey! 

Elder Stephen Nelson

Be not afraid; Only Believe

December 17, 2013

sooo... unfortunately... I havent got the packages yet? sorry! idk why! but im excited to get them when they get here! they probably took a long time cuz its christmas time!! :) its okay! Ah that sounds like a fantastic christmas :) I will be calling probably around 11. We will be with the Belisle's :)! it will be fantastic! and yes I will skype!! :)! i cannot wait to see and talk to all of you! man... i love you guys so much! im sad that amy and jeremey are leaving :(

That sounds like an incredible experience! That is the Holy Ghost telling you that is what you should be doing! In your calling! and the greatest part, is that is what christ would be doing if he were here. Man just reading that, and the words you wrote gave me chills... keep going and you are going to see miracles mom! and Dad. Keep it up! ah that is amazing!

tell everyone how much I love em. Really... i love you all so much! take a ton of pics at the temple lights:) 

Me and Elder Shupe are seriously best friends. We get along so well. We are best friends. he is hilarious you guys are going to love him! ha :) just a little bit of his humor... I was leaving on an exchange and I grabbed my blanket and walked past and looks at me and goes... " oh yea, you're leaving us... just like my mom left us..." and turns around and goes into the other room.... HAHAHAHAHAHa it was hilarious. another one... we were listening to a conference talk during personal study and the next thing we both knew we were waking up an hour later... and we both kinda got up and got ready again... and it was really quiet and we didnt say anyhting for a couple minutes.. then all the sudden Elder Shupe goes... " that was a really good talk..." hahaha man... we have way too much fun :) we will be starting online proselyting this week once we get our pages approved! exciting times are ahead!! I love you all so much!!

We are so happy! :) the pacakge will get here dont stress! 

I KNOW that the savior lives, I am so grateful to be apart of missionary work at a time like this. and I promise you... this is all I want to do. I am so in love with this work, and so grateful to be here... I know it’s such a short time. But this is all I want to do. I love it. And I will work hard. I need to give my Savior as much as I can. After all he gave me EVERYTHING! 

I know he is leading this work! i know the book of mormon is true... and lately, and right now especially... I know of a surety that we have a current prophet today and that joseph smith was a prophet. 

 I love you!
 Elder Nelson

Monday, December 2, 2013

I love him

Dear Family,

This last week we had little success, and it was discouraging... i would just pray and plead that i could figure out how to overcome myself, and break through and find out how to be my best! I prayed and prayed... well saturday elder shupe got sick and all our appts fell through... i was... almost ready to just stop trying... so i went to the Book of Mormon for peace, nothing in the book really answered my sorrows but i knew it would help... and i knelt down and offered up my heart to him, asked him what i needed to do and learn... well Sister giboney called us and from then on it all just changed. We had dinner with them, fellowshipped w bro giboney, let him feel the spirit we tried to bring.

anyway, we got a call from the traveling zone leaders, kinda like another set of AP's who go to every companionship and have an exchange with them and and see how they are doing... well i was super worried cuz i heard some bad stories about them coming. I was wrong, looking back I see that Heavenly Father was preparing and humbling me to recieve guidance on how to be better! and it helped so much. We were doing good things and working hard, but Elder Watkins (who came on the exchange, who also trained elder langi btw...) but he helped us sharpen our skills, set goals on things we can do better and I was just fired up! so excited! I am so focused and I see the blessings of it! I love you guys so much! we taught a lesson to a Girl, a friend of a sister in the ward. well we have been working with her and she has been doing great... well last night we had dinner with her and her fellowshippers. it went amazing... and she agreed to be baptized. she recognizes the spirit and she is so ready! AH, I was just in tears half the time, and church was amazing! you are so right mom, i am sooo so so blessed to serve here. These ppl i am serving with are family. These people here, elder Shupe elder Langi they are my family. I love this work i love this mission I love my savior. And im not the best at it, but i want to be... until I am. I just want to serve the Lord! This is His work and His glory. I know that He lives. I know that he loves me, and loves all of his children. I cannot wait to see what miracles are in store. I love Him. I love Him.

Elder Nelson

Be not afraid;Only Believe

Monday, November 25, 2013

On Line Proselyting

The following is the email we received from President Cusick regarding On line Proselyting. It is followed by Elder Nelson's weekly letter.  Thanks for your love and prayers on behalf of our missionary!  We love and appreciate you all!

Regarding:  Elder Nelson
Your missionary has been selected to participate in online proselyting.  This means that he/she will be spending time each day using Facebook to do missionary work.  Only missionaries who have shown exact obedience to mission rules will be allowed to do online proselyting.  This is a wonderful opportunity that will bless the life of your missionary and the people he/she reaches through the Internet. 
Your missionary’s Facebook page will be a tool for missionary work in the Tampa Florida mission.  It is not to be used for communication with friends or family.  We have asked your missionary not to make or accept friend requests from family members or friends back home. The only exception to this is that they may invite parents and siblings to be Facebook friends.  This is so you can see what your missionary is doing and assist in missionary work by answering questions and becoming friends with those he/she is teaching.  It is not for you to use to communicate with your missionary.  Please do not post to your missionary’s timeline or make comments or use Facebook messaging or any other Internet tools to communicate with your missionary.  All of your communication with your missionary should still be done using his/her @myldsmail.net email account on preparation day.  This is necessary to keep your missionary focused on the work and not distracted by non-missionary communication.  If families cannot abide by these rules, your missionary may be required to un-friend you or may lose the privilege of online proselyting.  We are asking you to be obedient just like your missionary so he/she can receive the blessings and miracles that come from obedience.
Thank you for sending us such a fine missionary.  We love them.
President Mark D. Cusick
Florida Tampa Mission

Dear Family,

I really am soooooo excited for your new callings... this is the most important work in the world, and you two are in the middle of it! for now you guys can just create a plan! unless you already have one?? man, dad should talk to our current ward mission leader for our ward! He's amazing and we work with him A TON! what are the missioanries names? where are they from? did bryce just not want to keep going? i think he just likes being in shape :) haha i tell everyone out here how much of a stud he is so its okay:) haha. those ladies haha sis manwaring was sitting next to me at dinner last night! and did sister ball and ashley ball add you too? man they are so cool! we taught one of their friends in their home last night! they have the cutest family! ha sis manwaring found you and said "wow she is beautiful!" thought you would like to know that ;) for thanksgiving we are going to the freestones and the lewis' and then christmas we are going to the Belisles and the giboneys :) ha so excited! I heard you talked to sister belisle this week! how did that go??  :) I LOVE LOVE LOVE HER and her fam. we are going there for dinner tonight! 
also president cusick and i are beginning to talk more (not much) but more, and I feel i am understanding truely why he is here in the mission im serving in. He is truely an inspired man, and most of all he is an obedient man to his Lord. It reminds me of how obedient the prophet joseph had to be and how the prophets and apostles now have to be and are! also he said to me and sis manwaring last night how much support I really have... and wow... I do have so much support... so many ppl praying for me and helping me and writing me and wow.. i am just almost brought to tears realizing how lucky I am to have an army behind me to fall on if I ever lose fire! THANK YOU! I am so grateful to you mom, the whole family and everyone else! 
This week was incredible! we started out rocky! (after the hess's getting baptized and moving) we kinda were at a loss for work and not quite sure where we needed to be and what we needed to do! but we prayed and prayed and prayed and stayed obedient stiving to wake up and study and listen to the spriit having faith the lord would help us find ppl... well now we have 3 progressing investigators, the ward is helping us so much and loves having us over for dinner! and we just testify of missionary work! they are beginning to catch the vision and the wave! 

We taught the mother of a Less active recent convert who wants to stop smoking but SO interested and ready to learn! we taught one of the members good friends who is young but ready to really find out what is in this life that will bring him ture happiness he will SO get baptized once he really sets his mind! and the friend of a young girl in the ward who is hungry to learn more of God and what he wants to do for us and she came to the church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints for that knowledge. She is truely prepared!!! I got down on my knees... humbled... because the Lord kept his promise. as he always does, and i realized how unworthy for it i really was.

The miracles that have happened are just the beginning of what is to come! Elder Shupe and I are working together, hard to become obedient and qualify for more miracles, cleansing our hearts of all ungodliness and become truely converted! I am sorry i cannot write more. But there is a spirit hovering over south tampa, one that is sparking a fire of testimony! and desire to do right! I love this work... I love my lord and savior Jesus Christ! I know he lives!
Elder Nelson
Be not Afraid; Only Believe
P.s. today we received an email that we have been picked to begin online prosyliting on facebook! in the coming week or two that will begin! I will keep you updated! Now is the time for us the Hasten this Work!

Monday, November 18, 2013

On, On to Victory

GUTEN TAG! wie geht es dir?? 
( in honor of my new ties to germany from sister hess!)

This week was a test of faith, but one that DID NOT DISAPPOINT! We struggled all week to find appointments to teach people, and to be busy but the one thing we held on to was our faith. Faith the miracles were coming. WE are told that exact obedience brings miracles? Well we are not perfect, but we are perfect in our desires and effort to do HIS will. All week we had almost nothing to do. The meetings with other missionaries and interviews just kept pushing us through the week. The spirit was just saying, keep going, there is a miracle on its way. And I knew it would be the baptism. 

I will share an experience about one night tho. On Friday night we usually play basketball at the church but currently the church is under some construction. So we spent time with Brother Chapman, ( one of the members who I am extremely clsoe with) getting greceries and things we needed. We came home and ate lunch. I was feeling rather discouraged feeling like we had not done much to help out the work in our area. But I felt we still could... So Elder Shupe and I knelt down together, ask for forgiveness and jsut as joseph did. We asked in faith. Pleading to Him our desire to serve, but expressing our lack of wisdom and knowledge of how or where to go... so we prayed and stood up and walked out the door (not knowing beforehand the thigns that we should do ;) but we just walked, and I just was waiting... so afraid to open my mouth but willing! and in my mind over and over I felt the spirit saying SOMEONE will listen to you, someone out here tonight will listen... 

well we walked a good mile and sat down it was almost nine o clock by then and kinda looked at each other and said... well? guess we will go home... holding out in my heart a prayer. KNOWING A MIRACLE COULD STILL HAPPEN! and would :) I was just trying so hard to listen to the promptings... I was playing in my mind stories I have heard of missionary miracles late at night hoping we could have one... well right before we turned into our complex we noticed a man waiting at the bus stop... ha :) I knew that was him... told elder Shupe, hey lets go talk to that guy:) so we did... said hello tried to start up friendly conversation and didnt go so well... so I just offered my hand and told him if we could do anythign for him to let us know. he thought we were from a business but i told him no! Missionaries! And he was curious and I explained to him our beliefs.. the most imcredible part was the spirit gave me the words, that the "Fullness of Christ's gospel" was restored to the earth... he repeated out those words and said alright... ill call you guys. and then the bus came... I gave him a book of mormon and he got on the bus and left.

Nothing will probably come from it, but it doesn't matter... Elder Shupe and I were beaming... a day that potential was nothing, changed into one where we listened to the spirit and acted in faith... and now we were successful. The gospel was sounded in that mans ear. 

This is what I testify of... when we desire to do the will of the Lord, and live lives worthy of his spirit all we must do is act on the faith we have. There is joy and peace and CONFIDENCE that comes with that!

The baptism was one of the most incredible experiences ever... sis Hess and Lukas and Maria! A woman elder Langi and I found at a gas station (who the sister started to teach) were all baptized in the ocean! The member who referred and fellowshipped sis hess spoke and I felt the pericing joy that filled her soul know SHE was an instrument! And her husband the man who invited Ian to come play basketball stood by me as we watched Bro hess baptize his wife. The spirit that filled me was indescribable and on sunday when I had the HONOR to confirm them members, overcome me... how could a soul, so rebelious and proud as mine... be blessed to help these people, and become such great friends. ONLY in the name of christ... "there is no other way or means whereby man can saved only in and through Christ." 
Elder Langi and I and along with all the hess boys justine and aiden (the twins) and lukas all sang I am a child of God and that touched my heart. 

After we were done confirming the newest members of the ward... i jsut sat back in my chair... looked around at these faithful new members... making covenants and this ward with familes and jobs and things they need to do who are working so hard to hasten this work, the other missionaries who like me miss their families and friends so much... and I just cried... I was just overcome with the spirit... I KNOW without a doubt, with a great certainty the the Savior Jesus Christ lives. And He leads this work... I know that is true. I give my witness... and ask the Angels above to record it, (d and c 62:3) that I know and will give my life to Him who created us. I know he is there, i know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the Lords kingdom on the earth, that the book of Mormon was given to us to bring us closer to our Savior and to know for ourselves withersover we should go. It is all through Christ.  I love this work, I love this place, I love this people and will go where he wants me to go, I will do what he wants me to do, I will be who he wants me to be. I am afraid at times, I lack knowledge, I am young, but I know He will help. To everyone I say (d and c 128) Shall we not go on with so great a cause? Go Forward, not Backward. COURAGE,BRETHREN! and on, on to the victory! 
Malo Aupito

Elder Nelson
Be Not Afraid; Only Believe

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

D & C 6:34

(Even though Nelson and Langi are no longer companions. This is a cool picture)

Mom! I bet time out for women was fantastic! It sounds so awesome! :) you need to do more stuff like that! But wow im jealous that sounds so good! It makes me think of when we have district meeting and zone meeting and conference and stuff! I just want them to last forever and just soak in the spirit that is there! But the point of them is to strengthen us to take more action! That is the hard part! So my question for you is what is your plan of action because of what you felt!! :)  I sent bryce a letter today and some pictures home with it! Also you should be getting a letter today or tomorrow :)! but it was a good week let me tell you about it!

So, this week in the Florida Tampa Mission, things are definately about to pick up. And i see the miracles. They are so amazing and many times I sit back and ask myself, why in the world am I the one recieving these blessings? Why do I get to be a part of this... there are so many other missionaries who work harder or have been through more... idk but it humbles me. That along with the fear that sets in every day when I look at the immense call that rests on my shoulders... the fear of what I am asked to do, and what I have committed to do. At times, I feel weak, inadequate, and alone. Very alone. When it is just me... training a new incredible missionary when I am extremely new myself. And i know when I walk out that door, it will be on my shoulders... it is scary. And I dont always fulfill the role I am asked to... in fact many many times I fall painfully short. And I get to the end of the day and ask him to forgive my unworthy and weak soul... and tell him I will keep going. I realize that, THAT right there is faith. The faith to keep going! FAith that I WILL eventually become all that I am suppose to be. FAITH that MY Savior lives and is carrying me! and that is what brings these miracles. I know of a certainty that I am nothing, as for my strength I am weak. But what I also know to be true is that all we need is a worthy heart and willing hands. And he will make us what he will. So the scripture today is: Fear not little flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock , they cannot prevail. I know that that is true. The little flock is all who believe... all who desire to do HIS will, and yet give into our weakness...and feel satan win our will... it burdens me down so deeply and yet the INSTANT we repent we are clean and in line with him! I say to all who wish to do missionary work, but are afraid? Do not be afraid, have faith to keep tryin... faith to try and fail and keep going! It will happen! My last companion told me over and over again, Elder Nelson the Holy Ghost is not a spirit of discouragement or depression, but one of upliftment and confidence!! Always! :)
This last week, we planned the baptism for the Hess's and they were interviewed and found worthy to make that commitment. Also an investigator who we found a few months ago, who the sisters now teach, is getting baptized with them this saturday! We are so close to Hess's and they are so excited! I know that they were prepared for this and are using their agency to accept this restored gospel... I know without a doubt that this gospel is restored and that of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. And along with Elder Nelson of the quorum of the 12, " I love him, I testify of him, and express my everlasting gratitude for him. Now. and Forevermore."

Elder Stephen Nelson
Be Not AFraid; Only Believe

p.s. something super super cool that happened this week that really helped me actually was on tuesday or wednesday... we got a call from a man who we helped do some yard work... he told us that the Piano Guys were coming to town and they said that the missionaries could come listen to their sound check and meet them all...... SO WE DID!!! AND OH MY GOSH IT WAS SO CRAZY! I would send pictures but i forgot my camera :/ elder langi has a ton tho i will get some and send em asap... it was crazy... during the one where they take off the top and like play the strings of the piano for like the" what makes you beautifu"l one? we all got on stage (there was no one in the aditorium mind you :) but we all watched them from like right there and sang with them and MAN! IT WAS CRAZY! and then us missionaries sang to all of them! then we all said a prayer for them! and langi said it and made John Schmidt cry (cuz he wasnt feeling good ) but they all served missions and they hugged us all and man... it was just sooo cool!! the chelloist gave us a peice of string from his bowe :) and we got their autographs :)!! man... the coolest thing ever!

Monday, November 4, 2013

New Companion

MAAAAAAN :) what a week!:) 

So, saying goodbye to everyone with Elder Langi was suuuuper hard. They really really loved him so deeply. He taught them and left them with his deepest love and now I have a great example to live up to! I feel that with his example of how to really love people out here... and my drive and Elder Shupes drive to work hard, we can really make a difference here! 

Elder Bradly Shupe is from Flagstaff ARIZONA!! 
he's 18! :) and he plays sports and comes from a yours mine and ours family. 
He was one signiture away from the army but felt he needed to go on a mission instead! and also he had knee surgery on his meniscus 3 weeks ago! A week before the mtc he had it! What a beast!!!!

We've already taught like 3 lessons together! He has a great testimony!! :) 
We now have 8 missionaries in our ward... 2... to 8... pretty overwhelming at first but SOOOO awesome! WE are hastening the work and the ward is eating it up! They are all sooo ready and willing to work! WE have a great investigator named Amy who wants to get baptized and the hess's on the 16th... man... I am just blown away... idk what or why or how The Lord is allowing me to receive these blessings but my deepest desires right now and forever are just to be a worthy instrument in his hands. It is truely the happiest thing that could happen to us. I know my savior lives. and is real... and he is qualifying me and guiding me. Mom i love you so much. your love is saving me and helping me so much. If you ever need anything just text sis hess! or sis giboney! We talk to them daily! they are soo willing !:) Ive got to go! :) talk to you soon!

Elder Nelson

Be NOT Afraid!; Only Believe!

Tell karson i love him and keep me updated!! and  cant wait for bryce to get his patriarchal blessing!! 

Monday, October 28, 2013

He will qualify who he calls

This week in the Florida Tampa Mission and especially Tampa 1 (my area) things are going crazy... 

It's hard to talk about because of how deep my feelings and emotions are here. But Elder Langi is being transfered and I am recieving a companion from the MTC. Serving with Elder Langi has been the greatest time of my life. He is one of the most honorable men I have met along with my Brothers and Father. I tell all who read this, that This man is not going to do small things. I know that My Lord loves me, for allowing me to be taught and learn from one of his elect. He has so much love and wisdom of the basic and fudamental things of the gospel. His testimony is simple and yet so strong. He has shown me what missionary work is really about. Shown me that every soul is great and that we must forget ourselves. He has shown me how to overcome our own faults and mistakes and allow the savior to save us and serve in return. We have done so much incredible work together and he is my brother. We just were a team and served the best we knew how. It's now time for change, but I will always cherish these times! He has left his mark on the Tampa First ward and we are all changed becasue of him. What a disciple. 

On Tuesday we will meet at the Temple Terrace Building at 11 where we will have a training meeting for President Cusick to speak to all the new trainers. Then all the missionaries will find out their new proselyting areas and compaions and I will meet my trainee! I am so excited to find out who it is! I am nervous but i know that this will bring me closer to my Father in Heaven. I know that this is what is right for this time in the mission. We will also be getting at least two more sets of missionaries in our ward! And our zone is now BIGGER! And these changes are across the whole mission!! Our new Ward mission leader is absolutely incredible and I KNOW that the hastening of the work is beginning in the Tampa First Ward! I know it! 

We spent a lot of great time with our family the Hess's they are getting ready to be baptized and they LOVE!! love love church! Their kids always get excited for church and they always remind us to pray and they are GOLDEN! They are unfortunately moving at the end of November to a new ward, but they will be baptized here! Elder Langi and I are so close with them and they love us too! Man... I am just filled this week and today. I know that Christ is the Leader of His work and Heavenly Father is blessing his children! I am excited for this fresh start and my new compaion and I can really work hard here in the Lord's vineyard! I love all of you and bare my testimony that the Savior lives and that this IS the restored gospel of Jesus Christ! Invite all to come to him! 

Be not afraid; Only Believe

Elder Nelson

Monday, October 21, 2013

We are only instruments

SO!!! This week was just a week of miracles. AS EVERY WEEK IS!

We had two great lessons with a part member family the HESS's! They are so ready and their dad is ready to progress in the priesthood! They have given up their old ways and have jumped on the road to CONVERSION!:) they were scheduled for this saturday for baptism but they need a couple more lessons and will be ready probably sometime in november:)! She is from Germany and they've made me fall in love with it! They are big soccer fans and now i am all for GERMANY!:)  Sis Hess cooks for us ALL THE TIME!!! WE have some schnitzel and Brotwerzt and german cheesecake and ITS SOOO BOMB!! Langi and I LOVE!!! going over there and there two sons (twins) call us the two mans with the same first name and they think we are brothers! Their father (who is a DIIIEEEE HARD BRONCOS FAN!) was explaining to us how if it wasnt Me and Elder Langi who were here at this time they would have never wanted to come... such a testimony to me that the Lord sends us where HE needs us. I know that Christ is leading us and this work. Wherever we are!! They come to church EVERY week and LOVE IT! :) I don't know why we are so blessed here... we have had soo much success... i am so unworthy of all of it. We have just been showered by love from our Lord and I am just in awe of the miracles... HUGE MIRACLES!! 

This last saturday we had a baptism for the McLeans. They were contacted by Elder Waite back in JANUARY and he had been working with them EVER SINCE! Elder Langi and Him made some huge progress with them just before I came into the area and then Elder Waite went down south. While I was here they seemed to become less and less interested. So, we just occasionally visited them. They were going through some family issues and ended up moving. They came to church A LOT! and then we helped them move! We met with them a couple of times and then one night... madison texted us about something and mentioned that they wanted to get baptized... the next day we talked to Dana and she said now that they have moved and settled down... she thought it was time. WE WERE BLOWN AWAY and Elder Waite could not contain his LOVE FOR THEM! HE CALLED US EVERY NIGHT ASKING IF IT WAS STILL HAPPENING! so it went on! And saturday we met at the beach and laid some blankets down and had a violinist (Sister Agster the sweetest lady ever) play the hymns and it was honestly a beautiful sight to see and the spirit was SO STRONG! and to top it off Elder Langi and I prepared a musical number, we sang love at home on the ukulele... it was amazing!

I hope that we can still qualify for the miracles to come, and that the hastening of the work continues to press forward and those souls who are ready to be found and to join with us can be found and progress and receive the fullness of the gospel... The Lord will do this work, we just need to be clean, worthy and ready. Just invite and do our part... clean our instruments and let him play the song of redeeming love through us. I know my Savior lives and loves us. I know I am never alone. I know that this is the restored gospel of Jesus Christ no matter who are where you are. 

Elder Nelson

Be Not Afraid; Only Believe

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Giboney's

Elder Nelson and Elder Langi were given a personal tour aboard the
U.S. Coast Guard Ship by Chris Giboney . 

(silly boys!)
Chris is married to Laurie who is a member of our Ward.
The Giboney's live on the military base. They have 3 cute curly blonde headed girls.  They are like our favorite family to hang out with.  Bro. Giboney has never had the missionaries over. We thought he did but we were the first! He's the coolest guy!  We wanted to work with him more but he leaves a lot for Coast Guard stuff.  So, since transfers is the 28th and he'll be gone until November, we went over and gave him a tie and a Book of Mormon with our testimonies!  Then when he dropped us off we took pictures then bore our testimonies to him!  A very cool POWERFUL experience.  Then the next day he came to church for the first time in a year or so with his family!
A miracle for sure!  So, that's them:) We love them!

Monday, October 14, 2013

D & C 82:10

D and C 82:10 - I the Lord am Bound when ye do what I say but when ye do not what I say ye have no promise.... every time I read this scripture, but i read it a couple days ago and it was different. Instead of making me think of all the things that I do wrong, that cause me to lose the Lords promise I thought of all the covenants I am keeping, all the times i have tried and succeeded to do what he said and HE KEPT HIS PROMISE! Teaching about the word of wisdom and the Law of Chastity, and HE KEPT HIS PROMSIE to those we were teaching... and every day when I am obedient he keeps his promise! Being a Mormon is HARD! (being a mormon missionary is pretty hard too ;) but ALWAYS TRYING TO IMPROVE is hard! So many people DONT care to do that! They make excuses for why they dont need to!! but no, we suck it up and say IM going to work on this! that is so hard, and then BOOM!! I get to read sooo many emails about how I am loved. I was almost brought to tears reading the words people were saying to me... and I realized the Lord is fulfilling his promise... D and C 84:88

All these angels bearing me up. You are all angels. The people who I meet here, they are angels to me!! The people who the Lord has prepared and the Lord is keeping his promise, he is hastening his work! and we are TRYING TO GET BETTER and boom... a mother and daughter, fighting through every problem you could think of, decided its time, and Elder Langi and I get to be a part of that... A woman we met at the gas station, decided that she wants to change churches, and has come to church every sunday (that she could) since then!! A woman who works at the gym, who we invited to the baptism said she would love to come and wants to get baptized herself! AND!! As the Ward is using the To The Rescue Program as our prophet has recieved revelation for us to do, A MAN was prepared to come back as Pres. Uchtdorf invited all too, and HIS WIFE was prepared as well!! AND ELDER LANGI AND MYSELF GET TO BE THE INSTRUMENTS! The Lord is BOUND and he LOVES IT! He loves fulfilling his promises!! As we make concious efforts to improve our behavior our thoughts, STAYING HAPPY:)! Refusing the temptations of the adversary we will see MIRACLES! Those conscious improvements are done by faith! Because the Lord asked us and by that faith we will see miracles ( moroni 7:37) i could not be happier. I love it. Do not be discouraged, do not fear! 

If we could see the end so near, we'd surely lose our fear! Press Forward Saints! :) What an exciting time to be a missionary, and EVERY MEMBER a missionary! Pray for miracles and they will come!!

I love this gospel and this work, this place, these people more than anything. I love my Savior more than anything. He is my all. I love him, and he loves me. He loves me for my soul, my true desires. And i hope ONE day my truest desires become my EVERY action. I love you and the Church is true. 

Malo Aupito
Elder Nelson

Be Not Afraid; Only Believe

Monday, October 7, 2013

Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy lade and I will give you rest.

This week in Tampa Florida, has been incredible. In these early parts of my mission here I am simultaneously trying to teach myself and those around me. I often allow my own mistakes, and weaknesses to take priority over those I am teaching. But the Lord helped me and has given me time to learn and teaches me every day. I have found so many faults in myself that I want to fix that I can be a greater disciple of Christ and servant of my Lord and Savior. I knew that when I figure this out I could serve with more confidence and testimony! So this week It started with a testimony of fasting, I knew that if I truely wanted and need assitance and words from the Lord, I need to sacrifice and show him that i need it. So all week I studied and pondered and prayed. In preparation for conference this weekend and boy were the questions of my soul answered. I wanted to know, how do I fulfill my potential? how do I serve the Lord the way he deserves to be served. How do I overcome fear, and...DO THIS!!

I recieved so much revelation! Part of which was from Elder Ballard, he said that fear will be replaced with faith when members and missionaries kneel and ask for missionary opportunites! This connects with my own fears! A lot of time, we are afraid of missionary opportunites, and we are afraid of doing good continuously and afraid of doing ALL that the Lord asks. As missionaries, we are held to a higher law. so part of the revelation was from a member of the Bishopric we spoke with along with conference, he told me that we must first want...to want! We can pray for the desire and then TRY! We will DO what WE want! That is the whole point of having a savior, we need him because we will always at sometime do what WE want. So if we can train ourselves to do what the LORD wants we will then become in tune and serve him to our FULL potential!! 

yes this life is hard, but if we KNOW what we must do, then we need to WANT to do it. As we do it more we will condition our minds and hearts to do those things!! and that will become us!! When the Savior died and suffered for us, we became His, if we were held to the Father's law, we would be destroyed instantly! But because the Savior, we answer to His law, and he grants us MERCY! Mercy enough to keep going. Elder Uchtdorf said, we are doing better than we think! and no matter how bad we ARE doing, its never to late to change as Elder Nelson said. In his talk I recieved the most inspiration. We are not destined to fail! We are the chosen ones, the noble and great ones, the ones who said I won't stop trying father. I love you so much that I won't stop trying. When we TRULY TRULY want to do better, we can FIND our answers! And we can get that desire and we can do this! The same words and scriptures, faith, repentance, love and the atonement. Will suddenly mean something different, or hit you stronger. This is the way the Lord wanted it. Keep TRYING! And don't be afraid! I Testify that the Savior knows what we are doing, and how we are doing and all we must do is come unto him. Come unto him and let his gospel, his full gospel to give us rest, unlock new love and thoughts and desire that will bring us the love and the spirit. Which i know we all want to feel. We don't want to be lazy, we don't want to be weak, we don't want to be afraid, but we know we want it to be easier. Well, in Christ it is. i know this to be true. So true and I know that right now in our lives, if we want to be more like the Savior we MUST do missionary work! We must do what we are asked!! Whatever YOU need to do to recieve strength, or the spirit, do it and JUST TRY! We are given so many promises and I know they will be fulfilled! Don't lose faith. 

I know Jesus is the Christ. And i am so grateful that he is. I need him, and I love him. I love this gospel more than anything. I love being a missionary and love my God.

p.s.i'm sorry about last week! We literally had NO! time to write! But its okay!! I forgot to add the things that are happening in the mission so maybe add that we are teaching a family where the father used to be a member and went inactive and one of the members (trying to hasten the work) invited him to basketball and he came and i would invite him to church afterward every time and they finally came! With his whole family!! they have three boys and the mother is from Germany! And they have come to church twice since and love it!!! So a lot of potential there! Pray for them!! The Hess family! They are the BOMB! 

Elder Nelson

Be not Afraid; Only Believe

Monday, September 23, 2013

To the Rescue

First off I love Florida more than anything!! This place is the most beautiful place EVER! The Palm trees and the cool breeze and the BEACH?!?! Its beautiful! I have fallen in love with this paradise! But when i sit back and appreciate being here I realize why i am really here, to plant as many seeds as I possibly can, and then all of a sudden the Lord will allow us to reap a seed that has been nourished.

The week before last we recieved a text from a father of a part member family saying he wanted to meet with us and talk about what he needs to do to be baptized... we were shocked! He wasn't on our minds or in our weekly planning or anything. He told us his desires to help his family and take a stronger, and leadership role in his family. He had been investigating the church for 13 years.. .and now he was ready. So friday night at 6 pm Elder Langi baptized him and on Sunday I was able to confirm him a member. The lord provides these little miracles that just lets us know, " hey don't stop im watching over you, just keep going" and then he opens the heavens and pours out his spirit. Whats even crazier is all week we struggled for ONE appointment!... our ward hasn't completely grasped this "hastening the work", so often we find ourselves seraching for ways to help this work. But the Lord has spoken through our Prophet with a new plan! Called "To the Rescue" a plan to bring back our less active and part member families and from them we will find our best referrals! So that was another miracle! And then the baprtism just overwhlemed us with blessings. He is never quiet, if we jsut stop asking and begin to thank him, the spirit will uncover the tender mercies that happen every day. 

I know this work is true, I am so grateful to be here! Elder LAngi and I are determined to help this ward as much as we can, there are so many special people and there are many who just need an invitiation! I invite all reading this to invite someone. Someone, just invite and watch the Lord work wonders among you! Don't be afraid, just open your mouth!! The savior is coming soon and we need to bring as many of our brothers and sisters to him so they can be prepared. I know this is true. I know this is the true gospel of Jesus Christ. I need him so dearly. And love him.

Be not Afraid; Only Believe
Elder Nelson

Monday, September 16, 2013

Help thou mine unbelief

Dear Family!
This week felt SOOOO long. But it could have possibly been one of the most influential weeks on my mission so far!

 It started out with an exchange with the District Leader Elder Woodard, a great missionary and it gave me a great opportunity to take the lead a little bit more and things went great! We prepared a little 8 year old girl to be baptized her dad was baptized recently, but she is adorable! Violet is her name! The rest of that split was great I felt good but as the week went on it progressively got worse.

 We met with a man who is married to a ward missionary in our ward! Great people but we were tired of going over there and just talking, we are called to bring them closer to christ by the RESTORED GOSPEL not by chit chat. So we talked about the book of mormon and used Elder Hollands talk "Safety For the Soul" woah... his heart was HARDENED! major. I could feel the spirit inside me saying that he was not ready, not open and that i would need to hold strong to the things i knew to be true... but... i didn't.  I sat there slumped over in my seat, looked at Elder Holland and instead of enjoying his steadfast, concrete immovable testimony, I cowered and when it was time to talk I gave a weak wavering testimony... For the rest of the week I felt disappointed in myself but I never questioned what i knew to be true. I believed so strongly... but... i felt like Elder Hollands talk: "Lord I believe, help thou mine unbelief".  It was so dificult, my fire for the work had diminished and was being pushed out of my heart and replaced with skeptic thoughts :/. I prayed and prayed and prayed and prayed. And finally i realized if I just look at this with a positive mind, seeing that the lord allows us to go through trials in order to teach us necessary lessons, and those whom he loves he rebukes and chastens! So i began to press forward in confidence. Continuing to pray and search for reconfirmation, revelation and love from my savior. 
He spoke to me as I studied for specific lessons we had, (the revelation was about the priesthood and the power and authority that comes btw) so I knew I had not denied him to the point he would not speak to me. But as I prayed thursday evening I received a prompting to ask a blessing from Elder Langi (we're staying together another transfer btw ;) and I knew that saturday we would be baptizing the browns too! So I finally realized what the lord was teaching me, he was strenghtening my testimony of the priesthood, as well as how to push through and take full advantage of trials. 

SO! From that revelation on, I could be HAPPY! Still holding on to that revelation and praying in my heart whenever I got the chance! and then saturday morning, Elder Langi and I both dressed in our whites for the baptism exercised the priesthood we hold. The words I spoke flowed so powerfully and he expressed some special things from what I said and when he spoke he answered my prayers! The Lord spoke to me! and I felt a rush of restoration within my own heart! Elder Langi on top of that has given me so many inspiring words about me and my life and all of it brought me out of this! I feel so grateful for the spirit through him and the revelation I received and I experienced such peace of the spirit!! I know that its true, I know the spirit converts!! The spirit that was sooooo strong and present during the baptism! I got to baptize Zaryiah and Sis Brown and langi baptized violet! I'll send pics asap! :) and in sacrament meeting yesterday we gave them the holy ghost it was incredible, Zaryiah the 9 year old after her blessing (by me! i was so lucky) stood up and walked away and we were whispering "hey come back" so we could shake her hand, but as she got further away she began to wipe her eyes! She was crying! I knew she felt it! After church our ward mission leader and his wife came to their house and expressed their love and they talked about how the relief society was helping her in so many ways... I almost began crying there because I just knew we had done our job and now the ward could show their love and help these new saints:)  I love this work and being here in Tampa more than anything. The area is sooooo beautiful. we had a picnic RIGHT next to the beach and around 7 it began to cool down and there was a breeze and AHHH i fell in love with the poeple, the work and the place! I love it. and I will do ALLLLL I can to take advantage of the time I have to do this work!
I invite anyone who feels the weight of the world, even in your own mind, even if your feelings just weigh you down, you doubt yourself, you just feel like you aren't as strong as you should be or would like to be?? JUST KNOW THE LORD IS ABOUT TO TEACH YOU SOMETHING WONDERFUL! And he will. And he will bless you for it!
Mom you too! Whenever you feel the depression hit just know that he is about to teach you something wonderful, your spirit may feel weak, only so you'll be vulnurable to the promptings and teachings! PRESS ON WITH FAITH! HE loves us way to much not to trust that he will always try to teach us! I love you mom! SO MUCH!
Be not afraid;Only Believe
Elder Nelson

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Grandma Brown

This week Elder Nelson's email was mostly personal to our family so I decided not to bore you with the details of that.  But this is the portion that included what is happening this week.  He is still on fire! 

(I believe the oldest girl is the one getting baptized with her grandmother.  
The little boy in the picture is a friend of theirs.)
Stephen is in Love with this family!

We HAVE A BAPTISM THIS SATURDAY! Gma Brown and her g duaghter!! I love them SO MUCH! She has so much faith! I know with all my heart this is going to help her so much and change her g daughters lives forever! The adversary is fighting her hard, but he will not win!

Transfer calls are this saturday so we'll see what happens between us! Caleb wrote me a letter! He's doing great! serving in CORN FIELDS! haha thats awesome! And three Elders who were  in the mtc w Payton are in my ZONE its so cool! I hope we all hang out after the mission!!

This gospel, these missions, this work. It's all divinely established and Christ literally leads it. Every single day. I know it :) I love you

be not afraid; only believe

Elder Nelson

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

You Cannot Go Back!

This week was just crazy. But oh my goodness how the Lord will make us what he will, and work the miracles he chooses to in our lives if we are just willing to do the work and try! 

Last week we were preparing for the baptism of Kim, she was a referral from one of our recent converts and she was as golden as it could possibly get. When we showed her the book of mormon she said "It's got to be true, it talks about Jesus Christ" and we explained the prophet and she said it makes complete sense, and she expressed the lack of the spirit that accompanied her previous baptisms, she said she just didn't feel anythingand when we explained the priesthood she said that must be why! She came back the next week to church with her daughter and we began to teach both of them. They loved all of it, but her daughter Aisha wasn't as certain as her mother. Its all good though we're still working on her. Wel,l that was two weeks ago last monday. Kim told us she was leaving(moving) for work the next tuesday! ( today) we began praying and praying trying to figure out if she was suppose to be baptized before she left or not?! it was crazy... but we finally felt that it REALLY needed to happen. And that was on saturday! So sunday we organized the fastest baptism anyone would ever see. We called all the people in our ward.  The 1st counselor helped us a ton and we did it! we were not expecting very many people to come on such short notice and FAST sunday but oh my goodness. It was packed, and there were soooooooo many primary kids! ha :) I was blessed with the opportunity to baptize her. The baptism was sooo beautiful and the spirit was so strong. Sitting there wearing those whites, seeing her in white the spirit was overwhelming. I had been preparing, for 18 years straight, trying to learn all I can, make the best choices I can, spent nights staying up praying until I cried trying to find out if I was really good enough and ready, and could really serve this mission. Then I sat there, worthy, next to a daughter of God, who was completely ready to take that step of faith. We walked into the font, I grabbed her wrist, raised my arm, and with the authority given to me by my father and Ultimately from Jesus Christ, Baptized her and afterward Elder Langi gave her the gift of the holy ghost and confirmed her a member... Man. I was just so overwhelmed with the spirit. 

But the craziest part is every single day, the devil combats my heart with feelings of insecurity, with inadequacy and a lack of confidence. As he does with all missionaries. Yes, yes, I and all missionaries can improve, yes I will work harder to be more obedient, yes I am a brand new missionary in the feild but I hold the power and authority of God, as well as being set apart as a minister to preach the gospel, cry repentance to every ear and lead them to baptism.

 I heard a talk by Elder Holland, one he gave in the mtc. He explained that we need to teach with authority, and power just as ammon and aaron and alma and amulek did, get to the point that our natural impulse is obedience, and above all (combinding another talk I heard directly after listening to this one) do not cast away therefore your confience. I know that this calling is divine. I know that we are all destined for great things. For one we are sons and daughters of a Heavenly Father.  But above that ,the Lord will make us what he will if we endure and accept trails, and allow him to shape us. From that same mtc devotional by Elder Holland he explained that after the crucifiction of the Savior Peter returned to his boats and began to fish again, doing what he did before, and when christ came back asking him "Peter, do you love me?" three times, and Peter answers 3 times yes,Lord Thou knowest that I love thee! and Elder Holland explains what the savior was really saying when He said " Then feed my sheep!" He was not saying only feed them when I'm here, or for a little while, he was saying when I called you from your old lives Im calling you forever, when I called you as a disciple im calling you forever, when I called you as an apostle im calling you forever, when I called you as a missionary. It's forever. YOU. CANNOT. GO BACK. When Peter answered the Lord the Third time, saying it with all the power of his soul, truely responding to the commandment to feed His sheep, he truely became what the Lord had called him to do. I feel the same in me, as a missionary I am called forever. I will be whatever the Lord wants of me, I will leave my net forever, and just as ammon I will feed his sheep "perhaps until I die" because I have responded to the Lords question " Do you love me?" Yes. I do. I do love him and owe not only my mortal life, but eternal life to My Lord and savior and teacher and friend. When i am denied, he was denied first, when I am hated i am hated for his sake, and when I succeed, I boast of my Lord. I know that this is a divine work and i am a very very very small and insignificant tool. But the Lord uses very small means to accomplish his purposes. Through the hard times, I am made weak, and I endure, choosing right, hoping the Lord will make me strong, and accomplish some great purpose. This is my eternal, hope forever, I love this gospel so much. I love the chance to do this. I know my redeemer lives, and I know he chose Joseph and I join him, I stand next to those two proclaiming the Truth, in a world who denies those trying to save it. Any time I feel afraid, I remember a quote by Ezra Taft Benson, when one of the apostles asked "president any advice? he said "yea, remember its not 1830 and there's not just 6 of us :) haha I love it and can't wait to see what the Lord has in store!
Elder Nelson
Be not afraid; Only Believe

Monday, August 26, 2013

Stand by the Savior

First off I love you, more than you all even know, seriously. I feel your love, and I break free of doubtful thoughts. Your love, just as my setting apart blessing said, is getting me through.  My family is my everything. I am so sorry I took for granted your love.

 Dad and Bro Gabbitas giving blessings to those kids and Bryce, is such a blessing to me, and so important.  Dad and Bro. Gabbitas are using the power of God as it has been given. Christ would have done the same if he were here.  Thank you for being worthy. School starting...woah, Bryce is getting old! And football season is the best part of it! What a great opportunity to spread the gospel through example, to Bryce I say be humble and put the Lord first and he will renew your strength beyond what you can think!  I promise, without the Lord I promise you i would not have done any good on the team.  Its more important to win in your heart, and in the eyes of your teammates than on the scoreboard!! But I know you'll have success! I love you bro! You have a letter coming! Im trying to send a package soon! DRIVING!?!? thats not right!! I would love to be driving out here haha, we are FULL bike, but we get rides a lot its awesome!   Please give me Grandma Rose's email or address or something, I see now the love that my grandparents have for me and how I didn't show it enough in return:/ I love you grandma and Grandpa Nelson and Grandma Rose. 

Thank you for hastening the work! I know you all are tying to magnify your callings and be dependable members of our ward! You all can to help make our ward a zion-like ward and Bryce believe it or not is the only one with keys in the house, Dad doesn't have keys, Michael doesn't, Bryce does, he is the President of all the kids 14-15 in our ward boundaries, through prayer and thought he can change lives and magnify his priesthood, save lives and be a ministering angel to them with the assistance of the angels of above! Bryce I invite you to do this!
I often become discouraged when I feel that same pressure on me, but whom the Lord calls he qualifies. We will never ever, ever be left alone. Be confident in your calling and know that we can do all things the lord asks! We are not meant for small things! Know that we have a calling from beyond the veil know that we are not suppose to standby living life making no difference. The lord has allowed us to grow up in the church so that we can serve the world standing as a light for others, and showing others the light of our own testimony!
This week I have felt the love of the Savior in me. No matter what comes up, the savior felt it. He was alone standing for what he knew was true, he suffered he set the example and he recieved nothing. Out of simple love he rescued us all. So this week, as we taught our investigator Kim, about the book of mormon, and she said i know its true, because it talks about the book of mormon, and another, Annette, said that no matter what she goes through, jobless, friendless, caught in the addiction of ciggarettes, and explaining her triumph over abuse, tell us that she will never give up on the Lord because she knows that he is there for her. If he can bear all of us in his hands and his feet, and if Kim can know its true simply because of Christ, and Annette can preservere with faith in Christ when the entire world is on top of her, and they progress towards baptism, then we can do our part. We can stand by the savior now and forever, we can stand and proclaim the gospel and invite someone to church or magnify our priesthood, read the book that joseph died for, we can pray with our families and the Lord will work miracles with us! I love my savior, and I know i am not doing nearly enough for him, but I love him. And will continue to try! I invite all of you to do something this week out of sincere love for the savior! Whether to help your own soul or the souls of others! This is all he aks of us! I love you all so much!
Family, I love you and I know you are doing good things, Michael and Megan, you say you are reading and learning with each other thats amazing, keep going, I want to have a marriage like that. Mom, I know you're reading and working hard in your calling. Dad, i know as well. Bryce, I know you're trying to balance it all, you're doing it all, and I am with you, so lets all invite and bring others closer to christ! I hope I don't sound preachy or annoying, I just really had a great moment this week that made me really appreciate the Savior, and feel so much love for him! I can't wait to hear from you again. I miss you.
Be not afraid; only Believe!
Elder Nelson

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

D & C 112:10

Just an FYI..... Elder Nelson writes 2 emails home each week.  One letter he writes strictly to our family and the other he writes is like the following telling us what he has learned this week.  I am going to try and combine the two when I figure out how to do that.  At least the interesting facts that he shares in his personal email.  Anyway, enjoy!

This week was so humbling. In all senses of the word. All week we struggled to really find people to teach, and we just were trying to stay positive and trying to do all we were supposed to, to hasten the work, but could not quite figure out how to do it. We are trying to be instruments in the hands of the Lord and just be led by him. And did not see how we really were suppose to do that. We are stuck in this transition time of the old and new ways of missionary work. So we just prayed, and prayed, and tried. Saturday night hit and we were just trying to stay positive and being funny, and getting a little light minded; just then we recieved a text to speak in sacrament meeting, on any topic of our choice. This was a wake up call and a burden at first, but once we humbled ourselves, we realized what a blessing this was. We both prepared and the spirit spoke through us. As we looked over the congregation we saw that we had present 7 investigators, 5 less actives and 2 recent converts. One of the ladies in our ward who has recently been baptized, divorced, and struggling to find a job, brought her friend to church. She spoke with us after church and said she wanted a book of mormon and a gospel principles book and loved her time here at church. How humbling this experience was, the Lord hastened his work and we just needed to humble our hearts. We stand back and look what the Lord does. So I invite everyone to Humble your hearts and watch as the Lord will take your hand if we are just willing to move our feet. I know this work is His and I know it is true. I Love all of you.

Be not afraid; Only Believe

Elder Nelson