Monday, August 14, 2017

August 14, 2017: Last Email to Mom!

It’s been a fun little week, this last one. I got to go on two exchanges, both put me with two greenies (Elder C., Elder J., and the new Elder D.). It’s been awesome to see them pick up the mission so quickly and learn to teach together. They’re all still a little nervous about talking to people, but we got to do a good little bit of tracting, so I think they’ve acclimated a little better now. 

I have taken care of the bike situation. It should be home around the time I am. Crown Burger sounds fantastic, and yeah, D. emailed me saying he’d drop by. I’ll definitely balance it out, but he’ll still need a good active church member friend. I don’t know how much “hang out” time I’ll have, anyway. As for Nathan’s emails, that’s my bad. I think I miss at least one of you each week, I haven’t been keeping track of who, though.

I think I mentioned one of our investigators had their house burn down while we were headed to Dallas. Here’s a photo of that, and one of us three.

Love you, Mom! See you in four days!

Elder Rice

Monday, August 7, 2017

August 7, 2017: Emails to Dad & Mom

A few emails ... I'm including Jason's response to Parker:

Email for Mom

Our new greenie's name is Elder C. and he's a stud. Really, though, I feel like he started where I did, but he's picking things up pretty quickly. He worked out on a farm in Roosevelt, Utah, and is really into engineering-type things.

Just a little before transfers we were just out tracting when Sister Mansell called us, asking us to drive down to Dallas and pick up some new missionaries. They missed their flight from Utah and had to take a different one, then their flight got canceled from Dallas to OKC. One of them (Elder H.) says he knew Nathan. Know any H. families in Kaysville?

A few minutes before that, though, we heard from some kid that one of our former investigator’s house burnt down. We just took a look a few days ago and it definitely was. I wasn't really expecting it to be so totally burnt. This was the same investigator I mentioned some weeks ago who had the “demon problems.” Not sure if that's connected at all. She said her daughter had demons in her making her do crazy stuff. I could also see that being mental illness, too, but I don't know. I could see her daughter starting a fire there, though, from what she told us.

We've been seeing a bunch of success lately. We found three new investigators in two days and a bunch more with potential. I think Elder C. is coming in on Duncan's upturn.

I think I got to try your pumpkin juice. Not sure if you had the recipe yet. On a similar note though, a member made butter beer for us at one dinner. That has to be the best drink invented.

Love you, too, Mom.
Elder Rice

Email for Dad

I was going to send this email last week but the power went out:

Someone was showing us the video on showing the MTC and I definitely think Nathan is coming in at a great time. I really like all the outdoor study and teaching area there.

My plans are still to jump from UVU to BYU. I've had a lot of people tell me about what they're looking for in students and I definitely know it's not going to be just a cake walk to get there.

That's awesome your ankle is getting better! I remember with mine I was always panicked it wasn't healing right and it seemed to take forever to heal.

It seemed like I was at one month away for forever, but now all of a sudden, things are going super fast and I'm trying to jam as much as I can in this last bit. It’s a little difficult because everyone will go at whatever speed they will—investigators, members, and missionaries. I'm probably just being impatient.

Jason's Response

Nathan isn't going to see the Provo MTC beyond the visit we had. He will be going to the Mexico MTC. In fact, Mom is already planning on you and I dropping him off at the Salt Lake airport. He will travel from there directly to Mexico City.

If you want to get to BYU, then I know you can. You are more than smart enough!

Sometimes it is hard to watch people work and progress at their own pace. One of my co-workers is helping his homeless friend try to get off the street. The friend has received countless blessings and has had many incredible opportunities given to him including job offers and places to stay. However, he still continues to sleep on the street. It defies logic. But humans aren't always logical. We don't always act in our own best interest. That's why the Lord is always trying to tell us how valuable we are and Satan is telling us, because of our flaws, that we aren't worth it. Try to keep that in mind when you stumble or when things get hard. The Lord wants us to look at the big picture—His eternal plan. Satan wants us to look at the difficulties of the moment and to have us make panicky decisions.

The next stage of your life is about to start. I remember being a bit scared for those next steps. You have an advantage that I didn't. You have parents who will be able to help guide you through some of what you will encounter. If you need us, we will be there. We have tried to prepare for each big step each of you boys will take. We have money for college—not all that you need, but more than most kids will get. If you use it wisely and have a job, you will be able to graduate with minimal debt.

When you get home, it will be good to put together a rough plan for the next couple of years. This will help you keep your direction and keep you moving forward without losing momentum.

This next stage will be great. You have already been through the best two years FOR your life. Now you get to experience some of the rewards for serving and sacrificing. It won't be a vacation by any means. I just mean that, having served a mission, this next stage will not be nearly as difficult as it could be and is for others who haven't gone on missions. Because of that, you will have greater success and be able to enjoy it more.