Monday, May 16, 2016

I'M HAVIN A KID (May 16, 2016)

Dear Familia!

It's been a great great last week of the transfer here in ole Vallejo! I keep hearing of lots of people finishing or about to finish up school and it seems so crazy that I only graduated a year ago. Good
luck to all those finishing up and all those who are DONE! And I'm ugh so jealous of Mom and Dad heading off to Hawaii this weekend. Have the funnest of fun! SOO we got transfers are tomorrow and I found out I'm GONNA HAVE A SON! Yup, I'm training! It's kind of super crazy to think about, but I'm so excited. I found out there are three Spanish elders coming in and one of them is from Dalton, GA! We'll figure out who were companions with tomorrow but I hope I get my fellow Georgian! So
because I'm training, I basically get to spend a day back in Rosa tomorrow. I'll go and drop Elder Beeston off at like 9 and then go spend the day with Elder Thom and Elder Lazaro in my old area for a couple hours. We have a training meeting at 2, companionship assignments at 3, and dinner at the mission home that night! It should be good good!

This week was filled with lots and lots of finding. We we're trying a lot of new neighborhoods that haven't been visited in a good while, by the missionaries. The majority was trying to find the Latino
population amidst all the house. We kind of have to turn on our Spanish radars when finding. A lot of people didn't want to listen or even talk to us, but it was so much more special when we found someone who did want to listen. We didn't pick up any new investigators, like we would've liked to but that's still okay.

We did a have a really cool lesson with this family we found a couple weeks ago. They are the familia Caro. There's like 7 of them in total! We were able to teach the restoration and it was great. It was one of the most clearly taught lessons we've had the opportunity to teach. I think it was because we let the spirit take hold of the lesson. We kind of stepped back and let the spirit testify of the words we were saying. Sometimes as missionaries we get caught up too much of what am I going to say next, when in reality we should really on the spirit and what it can do for the investigators we have! I always tell Elder Beeston that were in a trio; Me, Him, and the Holy Ghost. Oh how great!

I wanted to share something I found while reading in my studies this week. This was in Jesus The Christ. I've just barely gotten into this book, but I'm already in love with it so much! It says this:
"The atonement was plainly to be a vicarious sacrifice, voluntary and love-inspired on the Savior’s part, universal in its application to mankind so far as men shall accept the means of deliverance thus
placed within their reach. For such a mission only one who was without sin could be eligible. Even the altar victims of ancient Israel offered as a provisional propitiation for the offenses of the people
under the Mosaic law had to be clean and devoid of spot or blemish; otherwise they were unacceptable and the attempt to offer them was sacrilege. Jesus Christ was the only Being suited to the requirements of the great sacrifice..."  I absolutely love this and every aspect of it. He was the only one who could do it. He is crucial to the Father's plan and without Him and what He did for us, we wouldn't be able to return back to him! I'm so very grateful I have a Savior who loves and cares for me, even so to go through such pain and suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane all the way to the cross. I have a testimony of the Savior and his everlasting Atonement. I want to share that with the world.

I'm grateful for the love and support I get from your emails. It truly brightens up my days. Take care. Be safe. Have a good week! I love you.

Con Amor

Elder Alexander Scott Joyner

Oh Hey... (May 9, 2016)

Skyping on Mother's Day

Shalom to all! I feel as though we just conversed..... Maybe because we just did HA! Ah that was such a blast! I very enjoyed my brief time with you all, even with all the technical difficulties. It's quite amazing how we are in four completely opposite places in the world but are able to untie as one for such a short time. And a special shoutout to Elise for being such a great missionary! I should really brag on ya more often because you're pretty fantastic!  ¡Qué bendición! And again the happiest of Mother's Day to all. I'm so very grateful for my mother and grandmothers and all the mother figures in my life! I couldn't do it without ya!

The rest of the week was grandiose! We went on exchanges with the ZL's on Tuesday which was fun fun! I was with Elder Atkinson, who is the one that was with me in Napa and then came down with me here. I feel as though the craziest things happen on exchanges. That night we had gotten a call from some other elders saying they needed some help for an emergency service. The service was basically moving this lady out of her house in less than an hour and a half. She definitely had a
hoarding problem and stuff was everywhere so it was crazy trying to just get stuff packed up and out as quick as possible. It just makes me want to be even cleaner with our little apartment and space were given. It was quite the experience, to say the least.

Saturday, we went to the TEMPLE. Oh I just love the Oakland temple. It's huge and beautiful and great. We got the old video, like I told y'all and boy was it old haha. Just helps me appreciate the newer ones. Then that night I sang at the baptism of Tess Giner which was coolio! I sang Savior, Redeemer of my Soul! It was goooood. I forgot to record it though sari mom Sunday I sang in church too. I sang the song I put on Facebook, but just in Spanish. That was a good sacrament meeting!

Alma 56: 47&48:
47 Now they never had fought, yet they did not fear death; and they did think more upon the liberty of their fathers than they did upon their lives; yea, they had been taught by their mothers, that if they
did not doubt, God would deliver them.
48 And they rehearsed unto me the words of their mothers, saying: We do not doubt our mothers knew it.

I actually read over this chapter last night before I went to bed, not even remembering that it was our ponderizing escritura. I can testify of the truthfulness of this message. I do not doubt that God will
deliver me to los elegidos. I'm forever grateful for my mother (and father) and for their example to me of this scripture. We, as missionaries, are truly on the front lines of the battlefield fighting to help become converted to the Lord. I'm so excited and thrilled because mis Padres know I can do it!

Well this is the last week of the transfer! We find out Saturday night about info and such. I love you all dearly.  Les quiero mucho!

Con Amor

Elder Alexander Scott Joyner

Monday, May 2, 2016

Sick Sick Sick+Mothers day+Temple=May (May 2, 2016)

The Zone
HEY HEY! It's a grandiose Monday! It's good to get some emails and hear how everyone is doing. I'm glad mom had a fun little trip with Dwayne. It looked like a blast! Quite the adventure there! Hey Skype is next Sunday! Fun stuff. I will try my very best to be on at 5, when Elise is on but I will let you know. Just like Christmas, I get a call to set up times and let ya know and stuff. I'll prolly do that
Saturday evening sometime. Speaking of Saturday, that's TEMPLE DAY. WHOOP WHOOP. I'm so excited! It's been way too long since I've been. This upcoming week will be a fun/busy one, with District meeting tomorrow, exchanges with the zone leaders, weekly planning, temple day, singing at a baptism, Branch Mother's Day party, and MOTHERS DAY! It should be amazing!
Bowling on P-Day

This last week was a great/tough one! The beginning of the week was filled with lots of finding new people to teach. We even had a mini blitz in our area to try and get some return appointments with people. That really seemed to help a lot and we've already seen miracles from it. We're having to drop some people who aren't progressing and don't want to meet with us. It's sad but it may be necessary for them right now. It's been tough but God knows that there's other people out there that are ready for us, and we've already found some of them. Elder Beeston and I really worked hard this week and we saw it pay off. I have a personal testimony that we have to work for the things we want and that they won't necessarily always come to us. God expects us to put in our effort on the part and as we do, we see miracles in our lives. There was one street specifically where it just seemed that every door we knocked, someone said come on in or ya you can share something with me! Ahhh I love it. I did get down a couple times this week, but every time I did, God picked me back up and helped me keep going.

The end of this week was a little rough because Elder Beeston and I got sick :/ It started Thursday night and is almost gone today, but it's just a pain. It's especially hard when you don't have anything to do all day and you're just sitting in the hot apartment. We pushed and made it through though and I think we're all better. There's just no momma to take care of us while we're sick :)

Què Mas, què Mas.... Oh I was able to give a baptismal interview this week to this lady named Tess. The funny story is that I actually met and taught her the first lesson in Napa when I was on exchanges with some English Elders back in February. We both just thought it was kind of funny that I was the one that first met her and now was giving her a baptismal interview. Crazy right?!?! And she wants me to sing at her baptism on Saturday which will be great!

I completely blanked on sending a scripture last week which was completely my fault, so sorry guys! Instead, I'll just bear my testimony of Mothers. I've shared this quote before, but Jeffery R. Holland once said, "No love in mortality comes closer to approximating the pure love of Jesus Christ than the selfless love a devoted mother has for her child." I can personally say this is so true. I have felt closer to my savior when even just thinking about my mother than with anything else. She is such a beautiful example to me and I am eternally grateful for Her (and Dad). I love you mom! And I'll talk to ya soon ;)

I think that's it for this week. I'm excited to talk on Sunday (and Saturday). I love you and can't wait to hear from you all. School is almost over! Crazy. Have a most gracious week!

Con Amor

Elder Alexander Scott Joyner

 A funny find - please return the bike!