A glimpse into the life of a Mormon missionary (Elder Creer) as he serves a two year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He began serving in the Utah Salt Lake City Mission- Spanish speaking. On July 1, 2012, he was transferred to a new mission- the Utah Salt Lake City West Mission.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

She must have noticed his determination...

Hola Familia!
It was nice talking to you yesterday. So pretty much there isn't much to say because we talked yesterday, haha. Tell everyone thanks for the presents!
So transfers are Wednesday so that is probably going to mean a new home and a new comp for me. I will make sure to keep ya posted next week on the changes that will be happening. Yesterday after I called you we went to church for an hour and a half.  Then we went to an investigators house.  She fed us tostadas which were really good.  She had a neat experience this week.  We first began teaching her son.  She made it clear she wasn’t interested, but must have noticed his determination to pursue the path to baptism because he received an answer from God. 
We had the thought to take them to Temple Square this week so we did.
 Every time that we take investigators to Temple Square we get two sister missionaries from the Temple Square mission to help us. Long story short is that we had a two hour lesson with her and the Temple Square Sisters.  They were great!! The Lord was able to change the heart of this mom.   That was the big miracle of the week. Things are going good here!
I would email some pics home that we took for Christmas but I am using a Mac right now in the apple store in the mall because the library is closed. So I will have to wait till next week. Hope all is well there and try not to party too hard during New Years. Love ya!
Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer

Friday, December 23, 2011

We are just waiting for the miracles to happen...

Hola Familia!
This was another tough week for us. Our baptisms fell through again and it is getting harder and harder to find people. We are still trying to be exactly obedient and trying to do everything possible to find people and help them progress so at this point we are just waiting for the miracles to happen.  We have people that are ready we just need to have some more miracles to get them in the water.
My Spanish is improving a lot but my accent is kind of weird because I was learning from an Elder from Mexico and now one from Spain J   So this week we got to go to a Christmas devotional for the mission and Elder Oakes was there and gave us a really good message. We got to meet him and everything. So far I have met the prophet, Eyring, and Bednar in Hawaii and then Elder Holland in Costco and then Elder Oaks at the devotional, pretty good huh! Also a bit of a surprise was I saw Grant or Elder Gallinger at the Christmas devotional, haha.  He is apparently a visa waiter in our mission now so that was kind of crazy. I also got to meet back up with Elder Yancy and my MTC district which was cool. 
I gave a lesson to the youth yesterday and it was about trusting in the Lord.   Everyone in my class is a convert so I had them all share how they were converted and everyone one of them said they really didn't know a whole lot about the church before they joined but they knew that was what they were supposed to do so I took that and helped them realize that in those experiences they were trusting in the Lord. I think it was a good lesson and I shared a good scripture with them in 3 Nephi 19:29.  So read that one! 
 I spent the rest of my money on my mission card last week so I could have stuff to make treats to take to people so I am living off Uncle Steve and Aunt Malia’s present so tell them thanks for me!!
The thing that I have taken from these last couple hard weeks is that I need to continue to put my trust in the Lord. He knows when his children need to get baptized and how they will get to that point, so when sometimes we get upset that things are not going the way we want them to-- then that is for a reason that we obviously don't know. The Lord has his timeline for things to happen and we are the instruments to make it happen.   We need to trust in Him and I know the miracles will come. I am loving how the spirit guides the lessons and how I say things that always seem to be the perfect words. I truly have a testimony of the Spirit and without it we cannot succeed in anything. 
Love you guys and make sure you serve lots! Watch the Mormon message video “Lessons I Learned as a Boy” by Gordon B Hinckley. It’s a good one and is an excellent example of what we need to be doing to be Christlike. I will call you on Sunday but I don’t know when -so be ready!
Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer

Thursday, December 15, 2011

We either become slothful or great missionaries...

Hola Familia!
This week was probably one of the harder weeks on my mission so far. Everyone that we had with a baptismal date fell off so for the first time in my mission we don't have anyone that is ready to get baptized which is sad. We had some investigators who were progressing really well but for different reasons they couldn't get baptized yet. The one we had lined up for last Saturday had to get postponed so we are still waiting to hear on that.
Remember Mom when you would always do highs and lows during your Sunday School class for the week? Well that’s my low and my high was with one of our new convert’s mom. She watched the restoration movie and said that she could feel the Spirit very strong and that she knew that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. It was crazy to see the change within her in just one week. I really believe that the Lord is going to do whatever it takes to get this family to the temple so they can be sealed.
Because we are starting to have a hard time again finding investigators it is really important that we are relying on the Spirit all of the time. I know that the Lord wanted us to go back and talk to this lady again because He had been preparing her and we had no idea. All we thought we knew was that we had tried the week before and she wasn't very interested. The Lord however had a different plan and was preparing her through experiences. It was really important that we were instruments in the hands of the Lord so that we could go where He wanted us to go, even when it didn't really make that much sense. It was another witness that things rarely happen when we think they should or happen the way we think they will. The Lord has a timeline and because we don't know what it is, we have to be led by the Spirit so we can do what the Lord would have us do.
 Even though this was a really tough week and we didn't have too much success I know that we are given tests to strengthen us and to test our faith. So I think that the Lord will bless our companionship with success because we kept up our faith during this hard week. Right when the time comes that we want to give up and say that we did everything and didn't really see results is the point that we either become slothful or great missionaries. And I want to be the kind of missionary that the Lord wants me to be and that is definitely not a slothful one!.  So I am going to keep working and keep being obedient and I know that the Lord will bless me. Hope all is going well there, it is absolutely freezing here. Love ya!
Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer

Friday, December 9, 2011

Focused on finding the one...

Hola Familia!
This week was full of miracles! We had two baptisms this week too. One was for a lady who has wanted to get baptized for some time now but the only thing that has been holding her back was that she needed to get married. Through the help of the Lord we were able to set up the wedding and reception and then the baptism for her. It was a cool experience to see her so happy.
Our other baptism this week was for a girl from Puerto Rico. The day of her baptism we got a call from her friend saying that she had changed her mind and she didn't want to get baptized. So Elder Flaquer and I prayed and studied in the scriptures for a little bit and then went over to her house to talk to her. She said that a whole bunch of people had been telling her all of these false things about the church and she said she wasn’t ready. We had a really spiritual lesson with her and she felt the Spirit testifying that she needed to get baptized. She followed through and was baptized. Everyone was happy! The Lord always will provide a way if we just trust in Him and I am continuing to see that over and over again.  Anything is possible with His help.
Another miracle this week was with a lady who was a referral from her friend.  We had searched and tried to find someone who was ready for baptism, but we couldn't find them. On Wednesday night I said a prayer and asked God to guide us to the person that He wanted to get baptized because we felt we had done all we could and couldn't find them. So the next day we got a phone call from a lady saying that she scheduled an appointment for us to visit her friend who wanted to speak with us. I remembered her name from my first transfer. She had been to church before in the past.  She told us that she wasn't ready for baptism yet.  So we told her that when she was ready to make this covenant with the Lord she should call us. She did last week and has decided to be baptized on the 10th of December!
It's crazy how the Lord has a plan for everything. Most of the times I have seen that at the time things happen I have no idea why, or I think I might have an idea and then I find out that the Lord has a totally different plan and that is when we need to be instruments in His hands. He knows what He is doing so we have to choose the right and then He can use us to complete His tasks.
The other miracle we had this week was yesterday at church. Every week we are challenged to bring five investigators to church. At the end of church we only had four. We had done all we could to get five investigators at church but we only knew of our four. I knew that if we did all we could, then the Lord would encourage five to come to church. We were walking around after church and we saw this lady whom we saw at Sacrament Meeting with her kids. (She was our fifth!)   She had come to church for two weeks in a row and isn't a member. We set up an appointment and she is progressing towards baptism. The way I look at it is maybe if some of our other investigators would have come, we wouldn't have been searching and found her at church, and we would not have been focused on finding the one.
It has been a big blessing to see how the Lord works. He always provides for us if we do what is right, we have to be willing to be instruments in His hands and do what He wants when He wants and then we will be blessed. So things are going really well with Elder Flaquer and me.
We ate the best tacos of my life again at the Hernandez family's house too so that's always nice.
Both of us are also getting a lot better with our singing, haha.  We only listen to Mormon Tab.  There is a Lion King song on one of the CDs so we sing that one a lot, and the Christmas ones too!...I would consider becoming a professional- buuut I am serving a mission so you'll have to miss out on that. :) 
I hope all is going well there and that you are all trusting in the Lord!
Love ya!
Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer
Elder Flaquer

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Prayer is real...

Hola familia!
This week went pretty good. I had 6 TD's and 3 picks in our Turkey Bowl and we won… haha. I got suuuuper sick this week because of something I ate and I thought I was going to die. I don't think that I have ever felt that sick in my whole life and I was thinking of what I should do and I thought I remembered Jase getting sick once and he drank a whole bottle of Pepto Bismol so I followed his example and OD'd on it. The next day I was perfectly better, haha.
We had baptisms on Saturday for a little kid whose older brother was baptized a year ago. His dad is not a member but he comes to church every week so he has good support at home. Things are going pretty good right now in the area but of course things always happen so some of the people we had ready with a baptism date fell and there is nothing we can do about it except for finding more people. It is kind of nice to have Elder Flaquer as a companion because we both know the area really well so he knows a lot of good formers that he taught and I know people that we have taught so things are going really good right now. He is super funny too, well at least in the car or in the apartment. Sometimes the members ask him why he is so serious all the time and tell him to have more fun. We are having a lot of fun together and the days are going by super fast.
I have loved serving in Downtown for almost 4 months now and have made some good friends. The area is continuing to grow, which is a testimony builder that anything is possible with the help of the Lord and as long as we have faith and are obedient the Lord will send his prepared children to us!
On the Spanish update, I am not completely fluent yet but I am way better than I was before. I can understand almost everything except for when they use some slang. Elder Flaquer says that I don't really have a gringo accent so that is good too! I am able to do more in the lessons and that has been nice because before it was just frustrating...I almost wanted to get changed to the English program, haha. I taught the Young Men and Young Women this Sunday and used the recipe for having a successful school year but I made all of the "ingredients" relate to the For Strength of Youth pamphlet.  I think it went well. Of course I brought cookies and they all think I am the best cook in the world, haha so thanks for teaching me how to make those Mom :)
Elder Flaquer also taught me a cool trick we can use in lessons to help people understand what faith is. We use a tea bag and empty all the tea out of it and then we stand it up so it is like a cylinder. Then we light it on fire; so you have a flaming tea bag in your hand.  As the flame gets closer and closer to your hand it gets hotter and hotter.  Eventually when the flame gets to the bottom of the tea bag it seems like it will burn your hand and then it lifts up into the air and doesn't burn you. So you liken that to faith. Christ has told us the things that we need to do and we have to have the faith to do them no matter what will happen to us or what the outcome might be. So as the temptations get stronger to lose the faith, or drop the burning tea bag, we need to exercise more faith and eventually Christ will lift us up.
Our teen convert is doing great and is passing the sacrament every week with his suit and his mom is coming when she gets off work.
We had a cool experience this week. The district leaders all went to a meeting on Wednesday and they came back at 6:00pm and they said that President Winn said that there was someone for every companionship that was ready to accept a baptism date that night. So Elder Flaquer and I took the challenge but we had set appointments with investigators that are already on date for baptism until 8:30pm...and we are supposed to be in our casa at 9pm, so we had half an hour to find the person that was prepared. So what do you do when you have a huge area with tons of houses and tons of potential people to visit to find the one person who is prepared but you only have time to visit one person...so no room for mistakes. The answer is prayer. So we said a prayer and we had the thought to go and check someone that was a former investigator. We drove 10 minutes to her house and knocked on the door and some lady answered and I had no clue who she was because she wasn't the person we were planning on visiting. We found out that the previous family had moved to Mexico and this family had moved in a few weeks before.  Then all of the little girls came to the door and recognized me as the candy man, haha. With the Spirit, we committed them for baptism and they all accepted. It was sweet!  Always trust in the Lord.   Prayer is real.  And God will always answer your prayers! So don't forget to pray!

Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer