Send Jonny a Letter!

Send Jonny a letter!!

Elder Jonathan Collier
1015 Norwyk Ln.
Williamsburg, VA 23188

Monday, July 11, 2016

Hey Mom!

I got the package you sent! Thanks for that! I laughed so hard when I saw the ox, I didn't even have to look at the note! And the shirt is sweet! 

Brother Huggins always records us without us knowing haha! I'm glad you liked it. I just randomly got asked to get up and share my testimony on the Book of Mormon in Sacrament Meeting yesterday. We had about 15 minutes left over so our Branch President gave me this look, and I knew exactly what he wanted me to do... haha! So I got up and I hope it went pretty well! 

Our new mission president is doing well I think! I honestly haven't seen him or heard from him since he got here. Plus neither Elder Ciminski or I are getting transferred so we didn't get a call from anyone, so I don't think I'll even see him until our interviews which are a week from tomorrow. Not a lot has changed at all. Everyone says that change will probably be coming soon, so we'll see! Oh he's about 65 I think? All their kids are old and have at least one child! 

This week ended up being a good week. The Greene's were at church again yesterday and it was great! We have re set their baptism date for August 5th. They had one set back, but they have agreed to work on it and the branch is helping them out so much! Everyone is so excited for them and I am too! It's going to be coming up quick, and I'm glad that Elder Ciminski and I will both still be here for it for sure! Things are going great for them. 

We were able to see a lot of less-active members this week which was so cool! There was one that let us in that hasn't let missionaries into his house in a long long time! The branch is really happy that we were able to get in there. We're hoping that if we continue to meet with him he will eventually start to come back to church. I just love our branch! This last ward council we had yesterday we gave our usual weekly report, but it seems like they just trust us so much! My first transfer here, there was a little bit of a lack of trust I could sense toward the missionaries, but the trust level has gone way up and you can feel it! They are really excited with everything that is going on with the Greene's, and they just are willing to help us as much as they can! 

We had a really cool thing happen on Friday! So I was on an exchange, and we had just driven to Elizabeth City for a zone meeting so we were low on miles, so we didn't have enough to go back to the trailer and go back out again, so we just had to stay out! It was hot, and humid, and it was really tough at first. At one point we were going to stop at a gas station to go get some more water, but we decided to go to this neighborhood that we were passing because it would be less miles. We were walking around and knocking on doors with not a lot of success. But then We knocked on one door, and they gave us a cup of water with ice! It's amazing the blessings that come from working diligently. And not only that, but the very next guy we talked to, we had a GREAT conversation with him. We talked to him for about 15 minutes, and he invited us inside to get out of the heat. We were able to leave him with a pamphlet and get his information to get in contact with him again. It was just a sweet experience and I know it was because we decided to keep working instead of taking a break. 

I also gave another baptismal interview this week which is always really cool. I love being able to do that! These people have such strong testimonies and it just strengthens my own to see them so excited about everything! 

My ponderizing scripture this week is in 2 Nephi 8:22. "Thus saith thy Lord, the Lord thy God pleadeth the cause of his people; behold, I have taken out of thine hand the cup of trembling, the dregs of the cup of my fury; thou shalt no more drink it again." So this is from the Isaiah chapters in the Book of Mormon which are always confusing for me, but it just hit me in my personal study the other day that this is talking about the Atonement! The Lord is always pleading our cause, because He knows exactly what we've been through. He loves us so much and is always going to give us that support! I know that the Atonement is real, and I know Christ lives today. 

I think that's about it for this week! Just more missionary work. I'm excited to stay in Currituck, because I love it here so much. I love everyone. I love the trailer haha! I love working every day. I love being a missionary.

Hope you have a great week this week! I love you so much Mom! thanks for everything.

Love you so much and I'll talk to  you soon!


Elder Collier

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Happy 4th of July!!

Hey Mom! 

Happy 4th of July! We're emailing a bit later today because we had to wait for the zone leaders to be done at the family history center in Elizabeth City since the libraries are closed! But at least I still get to do it today! I haven't gotten a package yet so it must be coming tomorrow! I'll be looking for it! 

I hope you all have a great 4 of July! Last year that fireworks are allowed to Vancouver?? Oh my gosh I thought it was already bad enough, but this year I bet will be crazy! Hopefully no one's house gets burned down! 

This week was a pretty good week. It's been pretty tough finding new investigators the past couple of weeks. Well let me rephrase that, it's been tough finding investigators that STAY investigators! We teach people, and then they set a return appointment and then they aren't there, or they cancel it and never return our phone calls! But we keep pressing forward. We've been doing a lot of tracting! I think we tracted for 25 hours ish this past week? That's a rough estimate but It's definitely the least effective way to find... So we're trying to come up with more creative ways to find people to teach! We want to work with the members more, and we've also been trying to contact old potentials and former investigators in our area book! that's been sending us to new areas that we haven't been to before! 

Earlier in the week we were low on miles so we put our bikes on our bike rack, drove about 10 miles south, and biked the rest of the way to one of the bigger cities in our area, Grandy. It was a lot of biking, but it definitely cut back on our miles! It was a big help. Although we are definitely going to save our miles a bit more so we won't have to do that again... haha! 

It's been really hot recently so we've been packing a lot of water! I am thankful that we have an air conditioned car. But the past couple of days it actually cooled down quite a bit! A storm came in yesterday and every once in a while it will pour down rain, and then it'll be calm and then pour down rain again! Yet it's still 80 degrees which baffles me haha! 

We met our new mission president on Thursday. President and Sister Weed are super cool! We had a big meeting in Portsmouth with all the Virginia missionaries, (since i'm in the Chesapeake stake we're included in there) and we all met him! He's a district attorney from Las Vegas. He said something really cool, he talked about how personalities are part of what makes this church run! So he encouraged us to use our personalities in our missionary work, because that was one of the reasons that we were called here. I really liked that. It's amazing how quickly you can feel love from your mission president and his wife.

The Greene's are still doing great! they weren't able to come to church yesterday, but we have a lesson still set up tonight, and they should be there next week! We may have to push back their baptismal date, but we'll see! I love them! I should probably get a picture with them soon... haha! 

So I had a really cool experience. Saturday through Sunday morning, it kinda felt like everything was going wrong at once. Lessons fell through, our investigators weren't going to be at church, we didn't know there was branch council, we couldn't get ahold of our zone leaders for a long time (because I have to do a baptismal interview for them because their district leader is in a trio with them), and I was getting kinda frustrated and it got to the point where I accidentally knocked a jar of thumbtacks all over the floor and I was kinda frustrated! haha! I was questioning to myself why all this was happening and then in my personal study I turned to 2 Nephi 4 where Nephi has also just had a lot of bad things go on at once. And he says the phrase, "Nevertheless, I know in whom I have trusted." And that just hit me hard! Sometimes we have these experiences to humble us and realize that we can't do things on our own. I know I need the Lord to help me every day. This is His work, not mine! So as long as I put forth my best effort, He will make up the difference. And opposition is always for our growth, no matter what. We just have to trust Him! I know in whom I have trusted!

Anyway I hope you have a great day and week! Good luck with the garage! It's always a tough one... haha! And I did get your picture back! It was great to see you! 

My ponderizing scripture this week is Alma 26:12 "Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength, I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever." I love this because Ammon is one of the greatest missionaries ever, and he's still relying on his God for help. I hope I want to be like him. I know that this work is real! 

I love you so much Mom! Thank you for your emails every week! I love you and I hope you have a great week this week. I'll talk to you soon!


Elder Collier