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, November 22, 2012

I am truly grateful for the opportunity to be a missionary...

Hola Familia!
 So we were with President this morning setting up things for a mission meeting tomorrow.  It is crazy how hard Satan will work when he knows what is in store at the other end.  Everyone here knows how important this new mission is because of everything that the General Authorities have said and keep saying. It's sad to see how the adversary carefully leads people away.

Personally I know how much the mission has changed me into the person that I am right now and also at the same time how  many other lives I have been able to impact as I have tried my best to be an instrument in the Lord's hands and I know that the happiness that comes from this work is unlike anything else.   I am truly grateful for the opportunity to be a missionary and servant of the Lord.  There is nothing else that I would rather be doing at this time.  That is pretty much the best part of this Thanksgiving is taking a step back and realizing how fast the time comes and goes on the mission and taking a minute to really be grateful for the opportunity to be able to do this.  

I sometimes think "How will I remember my last day as a missionary?"  You never know when your last day as a missionary could be, anything could happen. That is why I am trying my best do work each day like it was my last so that I can continue to be able to serve with no regrets!!  I think that there are a lot of things in my life and probably in all of yours that we don’t appreciate.   So this is the perfect time of year to just relax and take a step back and really be grateful for all the blessings that we really have because we never know how long the Lord will allow us to have those blessings. It is crazy that I only have 7 months left!! Where in the world did the time go!?  

I get physically tired because all of the extra work we are doing but somehow I still have all the energy I need.  It's crazy because I literally have never been this exhausted  in my life but I know that no matter how little sleep I get or what-- that the Lord is going to give me all the energy I need to do His work, just like Nephi (1 Nephi 3:7).
We have someone that will be getting baptized this coming Saturday which is exciting! And we have a girl  that will be getting baptized December 8th!  We have several other people that we have been working with that were less active and are now getting their temple recommends which is super cool because it is crazy to see the change that has happened in just a few months.

I don’t know  if I will be able to play in the Turkey Bowl this year :/..I hyper-extended my knee up in Rose Park forever ago pretty bad and never went to the doctor and one of the cords on the back of my knee popped like 4 weeks ago so it hurts every time I play and it is still a little swollen, not much.  But I just kept playing on it and it isn't getting any better.  Sister Swain said to rest and if it still hurts I will go to PT next week. Also I tried those shoulder tests I used to do and I can't hold my arm up very good :'(.  So if I end up going maybe they can look at my shoulder too. Injuries suck. But other than that all is going good here. 

Something that I think I have learned on my mission is how to fully follow the Spirit's guidance. President Swain told us that if we have the Holy Ghost with us then we really don't need rules because like the scriptures promise it will show unto us all things that we should do.  I have really seen that coming into play the longer I have been on my mission, its legit! 

I hope you all have a good Thanksgiving and score lots of touchdowns in the Turkey Bowl for me :)
Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

My shoes I got for 5 bucks are soaking wet...

Hola Familia!

Things here are going pretty good.  It snowed like crazy here this past week and we have like a foot on the ground right now!!  I feel bad for all the other Elders and Sisters that are out there walking because we have a nice warm car with drink holders that we can put hot chocolate in hahaha ;)...It is absolutely ridiculously cold here, just ridiculous!  My shoes I got at DI for 5 bucks are soaking wet all the time haha but it will do because I am counting on it not to have another huge snow storm.  It only snowed a few times last year so I am definitely not going to go out and buy some expensive pair of boots that I will never be able to use again.  
The mission is doing really well right now and the General Authorities are really really happy with what is going on here which is good.  P-day is getting crazy too.  We are bringing like 6 people from the YSA wards to come play.  And they are all good.  One is a kid who has been super inactive for a long time.  I asked him if he would be down to come and help us teach a lesson that week. Just one lesson - and he agreed.  So we planned to have that one lesson be at Temple Square!!   And basically the lesson that we had there was super spiritual and he could definitely feel it.  We were talking with him after we were done on the way home and he was saying how much he wanted to feel the Spirit more in his life.   He wanted to be able to feel the Spirit all of the time like his siblings but he just didn't know how he could do it.  We talked about the importance of the Book of Mormon and how that can help us with not living on spiritual highs but having that constant companionship of the Holy Ghost with us.  That is something that we are promised at baptism so if we are doing what we are supposed to be doing then there is no reason why we should be living on just occasional spiritual highs.  We talked to him about how we can know that the Atonement is active in our lives when we feel the Spirit.   Every time that we feel it we know that the Atonement is working in our lives.  The Book of Mormon plays such a big role because it is the road map of how to access the Atonement and apply it.  We can have the Spirit with us all the time and when we do that others that are around us will be able to feel it.  He talked about how much he wanted to help his friends that were struggling.  The reason why he wanted to help them is because he was feeling the effect of  the Atonement and just like Lehi felt when he partook of the fruit (Atonement); he desired to share that with his family.  We talked about how we cannot convert others above our own conversion so it was important that he was getting converted himself so that he could help others.   Then he got up and bore his testimony in church this Sunday saying how he knows with all his heart that the church is true and the Book of Mormon is true.  The Spirit was super strong and it was really cool to see the change that he is making in his life.  He’s only 19 and the things that he is doing right now are going to help him for the rest of his life.  
But I got to get going so hope all is going well for you!
Don't forget to pray! Love ya!

Siempre Cree,
Elder Creer

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Once they realize where exactly the Lord views them...

Hola Familia!
So this week was quite the exhausting one!  We started out the week with transfers as you already know.  There were a lot of changes! An Elder from my MTC district was made a District Leader as well and he was super excited for that and it was cool to see how much his confidence grew just from the call to be a District Leader.  I think it is interesting because we have been learning that more often than not people will act and perform how others view them.  So in the world this obviously plays a big role but it is interesting what will happen to someone once they realize where exactly the Lord views them.  A lot of us often look at ourselves and settle for what the world views us as; we forget truly who we are as sons and daughters of God.  If we remember our divine potential then we will always be raising our vision for ourselves.  There is a quote from one of the Mormon messages called “Lifting burdens” that says, "we view ourselves in terms of yesterday and today while our Heavenly Father views us in terms of forever."  At least I think that is what it says.  But if we always will remember that then everything will be better.  
So once again not a ton of time today since we had another meeting with President this morning to plan a meeting we have with the Zone Leaders tomorrow morning.  Some cool new news is that we got a call this week from downtown and it was announced that starting Nov 1 which was last Thursday we were going to be the first mission in the church to start online proselyting during the day!!  So we only have one district in the mission right now that is doing it but it will increase with time.  So basically what happens is that during the day each missionary has their own laptop and they are stationed at a church and they do missionary work online during the day and then they go to their own personal area at night from 6 to 9 to work.  We had some of the people in the missionary department come and train us this week and it was super legit!  These missionaries are allowed to skype, call, email, and chat live with anyone in the whole world.  Since the political thing is going on the Church has a lot of advertisement and it is receiving so many calls and messages of people that want to learn more about the church.  So what they said is that it is compared to tracting.  Normally when tracting you go door to door trying to find someone who needs and is ready for the gospel...With this new online teaching it would be like you staying in your apartment with a huge line of people knocking on your door that want to learn more about the gospel..pretty cool huh!  So anyways I am probably not explaining it really well but oh well haha.  They were telling us some pretty cool things as well.  Like everything that has been changing in missionary work has been specifically for our mission then once we have all the technology and everything we need it will move it around the world.  Yes -we will be getting Ipads as well. They are all ready to go and programmed so that we can only go to certain sites but they are just waiting for now so who knows when that will be.  But you know the prophesy that says that the gospel will be preached to the entire world before the Second Coming of Christ?  Well they told us that right now that prophesy is being fulfilled! Obviously we aren't physically in China yet or some other countries but technically we are because of the online teaching so that was mind blowing ha...but anyway- this whole thing is unreal to witness it first hand and working with the General Authorities.  
Things are going well in the area.  We had two more people this week accept a baptism date so that was exciting.  Things are looking really good here...oh yeah before I forget here are some numbers too, I don’t know if Elder Clarke told you.  Since the mission was created we have had almost an 8% increase of the Sacrament Meeting attendance in our mission boundaries.  That is roughly 1800 people!!  It is crazy how well everything is fitting together and it is truly a blessing to be a part of it especially working so closely under President Swain!
Well I hope all is going well there!!
Love ya!

Siempre Crean,
Elder Creer

Oh yah Bry congrats on the call to Argentina!!!! Now we can all speak Spanish and Mom and Jessie won't understand a word we are saying hahaha...make sure your start practicing your Spanish now and drill PMG and the Book of Mormon! love ya brah

Monday, November 12, 2012

Probably Madagascar would suit him well...

Hola Familia!
Hey so I don't really have a lot of time to email this week because we had a lesson this morning.  She didn't really grow up in any churches but her parents are Buddhist.  So it has been really interesting teaching her because most of my mission it has been really fast paced because pretty much everyone has a belief in God and Christ and so it has been really interesting to slow down a little bit.  We use a lot of examples and analogies so that she can understand.  Today we were teaching her about the Holy Ghost so I used my classic Batman analogy. But she has never been to church at all in her life and the first time she ever came was last week when we were giving our talks.  She is progressing really well and she says she will get baptized when she finds out that what we are teaching her is true.  
So today we had a lesson in the morning and so now we are working on transfers with President today so we won't have hardly any time for p-day because transfers are tomorrow.  Elder McNees is going home along with Elder Homer.  I am still AP and will be with Elder Dreiling still.  Things are going really well in our area now and we are starting to get more and more people to teach so it is getting more fun.
So it's exciting to hear that Bry is going to get his call this week and I bet you anything the kid goes foreign...like probably Madagascar would suit him well hahaha :)....make sure that he writes me a letter and tells me where he is going and I am going to compile some things for him this week that I will send out. 
We are teaching a new lady...all of her family has been super less active pretty much their whole lives except for one of her older brothers that served a mission but she is just now starting to come back and when we met her she wasn't really happy and what not but now she has been reading and praying and coming to church and it is crazy to see the change that she has been able to make in the last little bit.  We had a lesson with her last night and we talked about the change that she has been making and how she can't get complacent but she needs to strive to keep improving herself so that Satan can't get to her as he does when we stop improving and get complacent.  We also watched a Mormon  message video called "Look not behind thee" and it is all about looking toward the future and not looking back which is what she needed to hear.  
That is something that I have noticed especially teaching lately is that many people have made mistakes in their lives and haven't been headed in the right direction for a while and they just have to start over and not look back.  If they look back then Satan can try and convince them that they aren't improving and that they are failures. We are also teaching a kid who is preparing right now to get baptized.  He is a pretty cool kid and has changed a lot since we first met him.  He has a crazy past and is really just changing his heart or letting God change it for him.
Hope all is going well with you!
Love Ya!!

Siempre Cree,
Elder Creer

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Follow the will of God with a smile on my face...

Hola Familia!
 Bry good to hear that you decided to go on your mission!  Maybe you will get lucky and come to our mission so I can train you hahaha slight chance but "It could happen"- JP from Angels in the Outfield :)
Things here are going pretty good.  We got to spend some more time with Elder Clarke this week so that was an adventure.  We had Zone Conferences and a Zone Leader meeting that he was in charge of and we all learned a lot of things that are going to help our mission out a ton.  Some cool things ...so our mission was created and it is how eventually all other missions will be in the future.  We have a ton of missionaries in a small area and we just go nuts haha. Now it all makes sense because of the age difference..the church normally  has several hundred applications for missions each week but this past week there was about 4200!  So it is going to keep going up quite a bit and because they will be having a lot more missionaries they will be able to create more missions like ours...Kinda cool to be the pioneer of all the missionary work, especially when you get to work side by side with General Authorities to make sure it works.  They are working super close with our mission right now so that they can know exactly what they need to do with the other missions that they will be creating or reforming here in the near future. They said that it is the last big change in missionary work that will happen before the Second Coming so that is kind of nuts too! I don’t know, but I think that it is kind of cool to take a step back and look at exactly what is happening and realize that I have a bigger part to play in this whole thing than I ever thought I would have on a mission.  I got to talk to Elder Clarke one on one before he left which was definitely a blessing and he gave me some advice for things that I could do to be the best missionary I could be and a lot of small stuff that he said would help me out after the mish.
The work is going a lot better here right now.  We have 4 people that are getting ready to get baptized!  We had a really cool lesson at Temple Square this week with a girl that came back to church for the first time yesterday in a long time.  When we went down to Temple Square we talked a lot about the Atonement and Repentance and the Spirit was super strong.  We also watched a Mormon Message that is about not looking behind us and that is exactly what this girl needed to do at that time is to leave everything at the Savior's feet and not look back..
  It's cool to see people come back to church that haven't been there in such a long time because you can see the happiness and the excitement they have when they feel God's love for them, something they haven't felt in a long time. You can see it in their eyes and it is just something that can't be bought for them.  As we are teaching them we can feel the Spirit super strong and as we help them recognize that they are feeling the Spirit they have the same reaction that Alma the younger has in Alma 36.  As we help them understand that every time they feel the Spirit they know that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is active in their lives!

This next week is going to be super busy as transfers are coming up.  I was pretty sick these last couple days and have been dead tired like you wouldn't believe haha. On Saturday I felt absolutely terrible and I was told to stay inside but as I told Jessie before, we don't take breaks..Just break records haha.  So we went out and worked and that night we had a really really good  night.  We found several new people that we could teach and in a couple of those instances we were just in the right place at the right time obviously being guided by the Spirit so I know we were definitely blessed for going out and working...I still feel terrible though haha..Yesterday we gave talks as well.  The topic that they assigned me to speak about was planning for the future.  I started my talk by talking about how Elder Clarke talked about in conference that we need to have Jesus Christ as #1 on our list of the most important things.  I talked about how when I was younger He probably wasn't as high on that list as He should have been but as I grew older and more converted to the Gospel, He became number one on my list and I talked about how when planning for the future we need to have Him as #1 on our list and we need to be happy to do His will because sometimes His will is different than ours.  Then I shared my sports story and about how well my plan worked out haha-- but because of that I was able to prepare for my mission way better than I probably would have otherwise.   So I learned to follow the will of God with a smile on my face.  Then I talked about how the perfect example of planning for the future was Jesus Christ.  God knew that in order for us to have eternal life we needed to be clean because no unclean thing can dwell with Him.  He knew that we would all make mistakes every day- some big and some small-that would take us farther away from that goal but because Christ performed the Atonement he made it possible from the very beginning to overcome all of that.  Christ was the perfect example of doing the Father's will as it says in Matthew 26:39. I then invited everyone to go home from church and to make a list of their top 5 most important things and if Christ wasn't on the top, then to make the necessary changes so that He is on the top. 
 Well I hope all is going well with all of you!
Love ya!

Siempre crean,
Elder Creer