Wednesday, September 26, 2012

So Immensely Blessed

Hello! I am starting off my e-mails with the weekly letter this week so I can write a little bit more - hopefully. As I said last week, we have been so immensely blessed with work in our area it is almost overwhelming at times. We were at the church the other day helping some other missionaries in our zone fill up the font for a baptism they were having. We were just leaving the church parking lot to invite some investigators to it (the baptism) and noticed two men talking to on of the Elders outside. Right when we were pulling out, the Elder called us and said they were interested in talking to us and they lived in our area. We pulled right around, got out of the car and started talking to them. It was a father and his son; they were both Harley Davidson riders, had the big beards, skull caps, and everything. After talking to them for a little bit, the dad said he wanted his five grand kids to meet with the missionaries and have us teach them the lessons. We have a lesson set up with them this Thursday. Another cool experience was earlier last week. We were contacting people on the ward roster who we did not know. We got in with a mexican family who we have tried a few times in the past to contact. They were super nice to us, one of the warmest welcomes we have gotten from a less active family. They were super nice, started telling us how they want to come back to church and their nine year old daughter was just talking about how she wants to be baptized. Talk about good timing ;) I have no idea why the blessings are being poured out to us, but they are. We have been sure to say a prayer of gratitude after all of these visits. We have been having awesome lessons lately, the members who have come with us to them have been extremely helpful as well. One question we have been getting asked a lot lately is about Cain going to the Canaanites. The concern is 'if Adam and Eve were the first people on the earth, where did these other people (the Canaanites) come from? It says nothing about them in the Bible.' It is funny, in the last three days, we have been asked that exact question three times. We researched it and found a pretty good answer we feel, hopefully the people like it. It is so much fun to teach people about the gospel - it is even better when they accept the things you are teaching them as well! Thank you everyone for your prayers offered on our behalf. I know that it is because of you and your support that we are having this success. The more I try to memorize Alma 26, the more I feel exactly like him. Throughout that passage, he talks about the goodness of God and praising Him for letting him (Ammon) be apart of His work. Indeed, it is very humbling to realize what a blessing it is that Heavenly Father is loving enough to allow us to help Him out. I will always be grateful I chose to serve a mission. Thank you again everyone for your support. Love, -Elder Hartman1 Questions from Mom: 1. What was your most spiritual experience this week? When I read some chapters out of the Book of Mormon that were focused solely on Jesus Christ. The ones I read were 1 Ne. 10-11 and 1 Ne. 19. Give it a shot, it works! :) 2. Is it starting to get cold there yet? When does the snow start? Yes it is actually, just this morning it was pretty chilly. I am not sure when the snow starts, probably by the first week in Oct. I am guessing? 3. Do you talk to Jill much at church? When I see her I say hi, but we are usually going somewhere so I do not have a whole lot of time to talk... 4. You have a transfer coming up in October - what do you think will happen? Will you stay with your current companion in Fairbanks do you think? I think I will stay up here in Fairbanks with E. Boyer, but nothing is certain. I hope I do. 5. What is your favorite discussion to teach? Did you get to teach it this week? Probably the Plan of Salvation I think. Yes we did actually, twice. One was an active member lesson and another was with two investigators. I just love testifying of the Atonement and how families can be together forever - my two favorite principles of the gospel :) 6. What are you doing today for pday? Going on a hike :) 7. Did you get your camera ok? How do you like it? Take lots of pictures - since you lost all your other ones. Can you get some pictures from past companions? Yes I got it and love it. I have been taking pictures, they are really good :) I got a few from my last comps, I have a pretty good amount :) 8. How is your companionship going? What do you struggle with? What makes it easy? It is going great. I really do not think we struggle with anything to be honest. We are both just easy going, obedient, and work hard, that is what makes it work. 9. What has been your favorite experience in Fairbanks so far? Teaching the gospel :) I know that is a typical missionary answer, but it was the first that came to mind and I am short on time on e-mailing. I love you!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Feeling Your Prayers

Hello everybody,

It is always so great to hear from everyone and how everybody is doing
back home; thank you for your e-mails and updates, it is greatly
appreciated :)

I got the packages and mail from mom, dad, and Summer, thank you for
your support.

Well, time is short for me, so I will not be able to write as much as
I had hoped, but I just had to send an e-mail of gratitude. We have
been so blessed with our work up here in Fairbanks. The whole zone is
still doing awesome, they are still over-achieving almost every goal
we set for them, it is so much fun to see. We found three new
investigators in our area this week - one of which we had a great
member present lesson with. The best feeling in the world is when you
can literally feel the spirit work thro you as an instrument in the
Lord's hands in this great and marvelous work. Nothing beats that! I
literally feel exactly like Ammon when he glories in the Lord in being
apart of this great work! (see Alma 26:1-12, like how I did that? :))
We have felt all of your prayers and are indeed grateful for them and
your support. Because of you and your faith, this work has been going
forward and we have been very blessed. Without the prayers of the
faithful, this world would probably be in utter calamity. We have been
sure to thank the Lord over and over again for Him allowing us to be a
part of this great and marvelous work. Sorry this e-mail is short this
week, we have to go and run a lot of errands, we did not go grocery
shopping last week! Thank you again. I love you!

1.  What was your best day this week and why?

Saturday. We found a new investigator and had a member present lesson.
It was just a great lesson all around, the member was awesome; short
and brief with his input; the spirit was there, we taught the doctrine
simply and clearly. The best part of it was how I could literally feel
the spirit work thro me (I will talk about this again in the weekly
letter home), I love being an instrument in the Lord's hands, it is
the best feeling in the world - that and eating some fresh apple pie
or brownies ;)

2.  Do you think you will finish your mission in Fairbanks?  Do you
hope so?  where would you like to go if not?

I think I might, but not for sure if I will or not. I think for the
last transfer, which will be about four weeks long I think, I will be
closer to President just to make it easy to travel to the airport and
such, which I would not mind, I love Anchorage.

3.  Which of your friends have you corresponded with lately?  Any news
from them?

Ya, a few. Talked with Broc recently and Kaitie. I e-mailed Trev a few
times, I need to write him a letter!! I e-mail Landon every week as
well. Nothing too big that I can recall at the moment, I e-mailed them
back a little bit ago.

4.  How are your meds holding out?  How are you feeling?

Doing just fine :)

5.  What is your most difficult trial currently?  How are you handling it?

To be honest, it is hard to think of one right now because we are
being so blessed. The work has been going great and we have a really
bright future ahead of us :) The hardest trial would probably be not
getting distracted with thinking about home too much and having that
get in the way of the work.
-Elder Hartman1

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Hi everyone,

Well, time is short right now (big surprise) so I will not be too
lengthy with this e-mail. I did not get the packages from mom yet, but
I am sure this week I will. Looking forward to them! :)

The missionary work in our area is going great, absolutely loving it.
Our zone is doing awesome as well, they beat every one of the zone
goals we set except for one - which is amazing. It was a bummer, we
invited two investigators to church and one of them told us that he
has seen too many hypocrites to go to church - it has put on a bad
image for him, which I can understand, it is just a shame when people
have these bad experiences when they are younger and it starts to put
an image that is very hard to alter. We will keep on working with him
and praying for him. It is great seeing people who do not come to
church often at Sacrament meeting tho, that is always such a reward,
especially when they are consistently coming too.

Cool news for today, we are going on a Apache flight simulator! I
guess it is a once in a lifetime opportunity or something like that. I
will let you know how it goes :)

One goal that I have been working on the last week is memorizing Alma
26 - the whole chapter. Since our training plan is centered on that
chapter, I thought to myself how I have never memorized a whole
chapter out of the scriptures; the longest scripture I have memorized
is D&C 121:34-46. I am currently up to verse eight right now and I
hope to have it all memorized by next Monday! Memorizing scriptures is
a really cool experience, the more you recite the scripture, the more
you learn about it and the message that it contains. It is really
edifying and a great recall in times of need or trial.

That is the updates for the most part. Hope everything is going well
back home. Miss y'all very much! Take care!

Elder Hartman 1

1.  Tell us more about your zone conf pulling the handcarts, etc.

The handcart pulling was pretty short for the most part, lasted about
an hour, but the activities we had the district leaders do along the
trail were a lot of fun tho. One of them did an activity where we had
to spin around a baseball bat seven times then run to a tree and it
was related to following the spirit. We did ours on being equally
yolked in the companionship. There is not much more to say other than
that about the handcarts other than it was a great experience.
Honestly the best part of zone conference was the testimony meeting,
just because it is always great to hear from everyone, whether it is
stories or lessons learned, whatever it is, my testimony is always
strengthened afterwards.

2.  How was your zone council?  What did you learn there?  Did you go
to Anchorage for that?

Unfortunately we did not go to Anchorage for that, which was a huge
bummer. It was pretty good, a lot of the discussion was geared towards
missionary disobedience, which almost all of it our zone was not
having a problem with, so we did not have a whole lot to say during
the discussions. We learned about our new training plan called 'Lord
of the Harvest', it will be really cool, it is focused on Alma 26.

3.  How often do members feed you there?  How does it work with Elder
B. being vegan?  Is he really strict vegan?  No eggs or milk? Are you
learning to cook at all?

We get fed pretty often, I would say on average every other day
probably. E. Boyer is vegetarian, not vegan - yet. He just does not
eat meat. He is really polite so he eats really little at members
homes when they feed us - I usually eat his leftovers, which I am just
fine with :) I sometimes cook vegetables for us, but that is the most
I do with cooking.

4.  What was your week like?  What did you do?

It was pretty busy and a lot of fun. We are getting a lot of work done
here and it feels great. We went on exchanges, saw a lot of less
actives and pretty much just did missionary work. Nothing too big
happened for the most part, just a lot of teaching and testifying of
Christ! :)

5.  How is your companionship going?  Has anything interesting happened?

It is going great, loving it. By means of something interesting
happening....not sure if I can recall anything that would fit into
that category...we did wrestle the other night, I won of course ;)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Hello everyone!

To sum up everything that happened within the last week: it was really
weird. I do not know how to describe it other than that, it just was.
It involved Russians, various instruments including Mandalyns and
Banjos, and really weird/interesting people. E. Boyer and I are having
a ton of fun together tho, we are working really hard and having a lot
of laughs. We were visiting a less active family the other night and
after the spiritual message, they noticed his name tag. Apparently
they also have family with the last name Boyer. After some
conversation, they started examining him for genetic similarities,
running their hands thro his hair saying how perfectly structured it
was (this was his first time meeting the family), comparing teeth,
noses, and hands, it was so entertaining to watch from my perspective
:) I guess he must be related to them somehow tho! Their hands did
have similarities as well as their teeth as well. One of the family
members just became a new investigator and she is actually someone who
we really want to focus on to be baptized before E. Boyer leaves. It
would be a really cool experience if he was actually related to her
and she was baptized before he leaves.

Almost half the zone changed for transfers, there are four trainers up
here so we got more exchanges this transfer - probably one every week.
We have ZLC tomorrow from about 8 - 3. We had zone conference this
weekend, it was a great experience. I fell in love with a turkey that
was at the members house we did it at. We had training in the morning,
then went and did activities, then had dinner, then closed with a
testimony meeting that was really spiritual. Our training plan for
this transfer is Zions Camp, so we pulled handcarts for part of the
conference and had activities along the trail around the members home.
E. Boyer and I trained on being 'equally yolked' as a companionship.
We talked about how the person you should be serving the most, next to
the Lord, is your companion. It is funny because a lot of the time, I
think we as missionaries forget to serve our companion because you are
with him/her all the time - I know I am guilty of that. I have been
making a greater effort to serve my companion tho and I have
definitely seen the difference. As you serve your companion, your
companion serves you back - it follows the adage 'what goes around
comes around.' Alma 41: 14-15 is a perfect scripture that talks about
that exact same thing. I am a firm believer of that saying as well. It
takes a lot of effort to serve your companion, whether it is a spouse,
brother, sister, or missionary companion, but it is definitely worth

Hope y'all enjoyed this letter! I will talk to you next week!

1.  Tell us about your new companion.  Do you think this will be an
easy or challenging companionship?  Why?

This companionship is going to be super easy, it already has been.
Elder Boyer is a Yellow with White, way easy to get along with, we
have had so much fun the last week. He is the oldest in his family,
has one younger brother and one younger sister. He plans on going to
school at UNLV, then transferring to either the U or BYU. He wears
glasses, likes a lot of the same stuff as Bree actually, reminds me of
her in a lot of ways - which is really nice :) not sure what else to
say about him, let me know what else you want to know!

2.  Did your zone change much?  Have you had much interaction with the
new missionaries called there this week?  Did you get your packages
this week?

Yes, nearly half of the zone changed actually. We are on exchanges
right now, I am with E. Parkin, from Virginia, who is a new
missionary. I have met all of the other ones and they seem solid, this
is going to be a really fun transfer :)

3.  I wrote to you about talking to your president and our homecoming
- does that sound good to you?

That sounds perfect to me :)

4.  Is it beginning to feel like fall there yet?  Do the leaves change
there or is it mostly evergreens?  How soon till the snow starts
falling there?

Yes it does actually. The leaves are changing colors now, it is going
to look so pretty. The snow probably will not come 'till around late
September - early October I think.

5.  What do you want us to remember to do this Christmas?  Anything
you especially want us to plan, food, activities, etc.?

Just go to the cabin, that is my biggest and only wish - at the moment
:) I am so excited...