Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy 2018 from Mesa! Week #73

Happy New Year Mom! :) 
The year is over already and I can’t wrap my head around how that happened. Time goes fast when you are doing the Lord's work. Reflecting back on 2017 makes me so grateful. I’ve never changed more than I have in the last year of my life. I have reason to be grateful for so many experiences that I’ve had. I know that Heavenly Father knows me because looking back on the different areas, companions, investigators, and leaders that I’ve been involved with, I have grown more than ever before. I will admit that it was the hardest year of my life, there were times when I flat out hated it. I struggle just as anyone does and being a missionary doesn’t change that. But what it does change is how you deal with those struggles and overcome them. I have come to love the Atonement of Jesus Christ, and through that I can become better than I was before. I am still very innocent in the Gospel but I’ve received so much knowledge and understanding, I wouldn’t change it for the world. Missions are a HUGE life changing experience. If you EVER have the opportunity to go, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE GO! 

I’m super glad you guys had a good Christmas. I know I did! I will always remember the Christmas experiences I had on my mission. I just can’t believe it’s gone already, I don’t want to stop listening to Christmas music yet๐Ÿ˜‚ And I didn’t know they don’t sell eggnog anymore after Christmas!!!๐Ÿ˜ฑ I’ve avoided it for 19 years and now that I like it they stop selling it! What the.....not cool.

Way to go on the new church calling Mom! That’s so cool. I’ve learned a lot more about the church and how it works and I LOVE the relief society! Man they help out in missionary work soooo much. They really know how to make people feel welcome in the ward. Your going to love it, and your going to be an amazing teacher. I know you will :)

That’s cool that Brother Clark spoke at church. I can’t really picture his face, but I actually have heard about the 50% assigned to a mission, and the other to a mission President. Honestly I know for a FACT that I was supposed to come to Mesa. There couldn’t have been a more perfect place for me to go. There are certain people that I’ve met here that I know I was supposed to befriend them and help them come unto Christ. As far as how I feel about President Townsend. I honestly feel like a huge part of my assignment as a missionary was geared toward being specifically with President Townsend. If it weren’t for him I probably wouldn’t still be in Mesa. He has helped me so much. He really understands how the Atonement works and he’s helped me apply it more fully in my life. So to answer your question, I feel like a huge part of my assignment was to President Townsend. But I also know that it needed to be Mesa.

I loved talking to you guys on Christmas too! It was really exciting to see everyone. I’m glad things haven’t changed too much, except my little bro getting bigger than me!

We met a young women this week named Nikki. We’ve been trying to meet her for WEEKS. I received a prompting to visit her one afternoon and she was finally there! She is 17 years old and she was baptized when she was 12, but hasn’t been to church since. She invited us in and we had a good 2 hour question and answer lesson with her. She had sooo many good questions about the Plan of Salvation and the commandments, all sorts of things. She is looking for more in life and wants to understand it more. We taught as best as we could to her needs and then committed her to come to church and she came! Woot woot! It was so good because the YW president and some young women basically just pulled her into the ward. That’s exactly what people need when they come into the church for the first time, or they are returning. Anyways it was a great experience, we are meeting with her again tomorrow night! ๐Ÿ˜

We also found a new investigator this week, he’s name is Eli! He’s 17 years old and he’s such a homie. Me and him connected pretty well, he’s actually living alone in an apartment and wanted us to come by and teach him. So we taught him the restoration and he had never heard about any of it before. We gave him a Book of Mormon and committed him to read and pray about it. Lately I’ve been noticing the love that I feel towards people that I am teaching, it’s growing. And I attribute every bit of that to my study of the Atonement.  

Last night for New Years Eve we spent it with the Garners and their family. It was a party as usual, we had a ton of good food and played a bunch of fun games๐Ÿ˜‚ We played the game where you have a card on your head and you have to guess what it is, haha it got pretty real. I forgot how much fun playing games can be. Then at 8:45 we had a toast for the new year because we have to be home by 9:00๐Ÿ˜‚

Today we had a big mission game day at Cooley park. It was a lot of fun. We played football for a few hours and then some street ball on the outside court. It was awesome. It’s always a party to see everyone. Then afterward we had a big BBQ lunch together and it was a good time. It made me realize how many friends I have made on my mission and how close I am to a bunch of them. I just wish some of them didn’t live so far away๐Ÿ˜‚

I’m super excited for the new year ahead! I know that Heavenly Father has a plan for me and that it’s my job to follow that plan. That is one of my goals this year, to follow the will of God more closely so I can become who he needs me to become :) I love you so much Momma, and I miss you but am always praying for you and everyone else. Have a happy new year!๐Ÿ˜❤️❤️
Love, Elder Findlay

December in Mesa ☼

Sister Garner drew this on my Sunday
lunch and I think she nailed it!
She's so nice๐Ÿ˜‚

Mesa Missionary sports p-day.
Elder Findlay is just right of center in a blue
Arizona sweatshirt.

Good ole Elder Draper :)