Hi Elder Nicholas Dees.
This is mom. How are you doing? Your spoke of teaching a lot of discussions and that’s nice to hear. Many will accept the message and many will not. I suppose it was the same in the time that Christ walked the earth, even with him among the people many still denied him. I pray you are studying to know Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and if you believe they are real, because only then can it change our actions, goals, etc. Do you read the Book of Mormon and Bible? I need to finish the Old Testament. I don’t fully understand all of it but I do receive the witness of the Holy Ghost sometimes, testifying of the truths I read but unless I read I can’t receive that witness. Anyway, I hope you are studying.
I don’t know what it is that you are wanting to tell us. I had fasted for you this past Fast Sunday. I hope it is good news but with your hesitancy to readily tell us I must say I am worried. Is the mission a blessing in your life?
I receive Elder Bennett Maxwell’s emails via Brittney and I was thinking you might enjoy this past email. I hope you will read it. He seems to be doing good as a missionary.
Email of Elder Bennett Maxwell: 5/7/12
This week was so awesome and flew by. I got my travel plans Saturday and I am really leaving Tuesday the 22. Meaning I get Monday for a pday then we all spend another night at the mission home which I am way excited for. I have gotten pretty close to the mission President because I am so close to him and see him almost weekly. My flight leaves to Salt Lake City at 8:10 and arrives at like 10. Then I leave to San Diego at 11:10 and arrive at 12 pm their time. Then I guess I will just drive across the boarder and finally be in Mexico!!!!! I have been writing my friend who is in Tijuana mission and he said he doesn't speak any English. haha I am so stoked but at the same time a little sad to be leaving. Being a missionary here is seriously awesome and we see the funniest/craziest stuff daily. haha
First off our baptism last week got moved to this week because of family issues meaning this week we have 3 baptisms!!!! I have been so lucky to see so much success in the short time I have been out here. All three of them have been coming to church and are way solid. One has 3 little girls who are way cool. Yesterday was obviously testimony meeting and I sat by them and told the oldest (who is 6) to go bear her testimony and she did! She has only been to church a few times and already had the faith and courage to bear her testimony! She ended up going up there and saying a few words then coming back to me crying but hey, she tried! ha
After I realized that I didn't bear my testimony and that would be my last time to do it in English so I was pretty disappointed in myself. But last night we had a recent convert fireside where recent converts bear their testimonies and it was so awesome! And at the end I was one of the 4 out of like 50 missionaries to bear my testimony which I am so grateful and even more surprised that the Lord let me go up and redeem myself.
So all that is cool and I consider them to be miracles but the biggest miracles come from the converts. First off, our convert who was baptized a month ago spoke and did awesome and on Saturday I got to go up with him to the temple and do baptisms for the dead and I was the one who baptized him! It was so cool! There was another convert who went to school for 4 years and graduated to be a Baptist minister then went to Salt Lake, was handed a Book of Mormon, completely converted and is now baptized. He threw away everything for the other church! Him joining the church means that he lost his career and is now working construction after completing college. Only the true church can have such drastic changes on people. It's such a miracle to see the faith that people have who are so new to the church and the gospel.
The stripling warriors are seriously so cool to read about. We all know the success they had but there are several things they did in order to be successful. I just want to quickly talk about one of those things and it's found in the 21st verse of Alma chapter 57 it says "yea, and they did obey and observe to preform every word of command with EXACTNESS; yea, and even according to their faith it was done unto them" I don't know about you but exactness to me doesn't leave much room to mess around to say the least. ha Anyone who has served a mission knows that their is a huge emphasis on exact obedience but it applies to everything in life. "and when we obtain any blessings from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated" D&C 130:21 The only way to be completely victorious like the stripling warriors is to obey with exactness. It's after obedience that we see the miracle of all their lives being saved. I really believe that the miracles I see daily come from my obedience.
Since the last transfer (3 weeks ago) me and my companion have tried hard to "tune up" our obedience. It was small things that we struggled with like listening to a Spanish CD that wasn't approved (even though we couldn't understand it anyway) ha and me having to stand behind the car every time he backs up. It's little things like these that made us go from one baptism last transfer to 3 this transfer. Even though we may think the commandments are stupid and they don't all apply to us, they do. I hope we can all find those small rules that don't seem to have a point and obey them anyway. I promise that as we do that we will see the blessings. God gives us commandments so he can bless us.
Well familia y amigos. I am loving life and growing daily. I hope all is well back home and if you're super bored, I guess I wouldn't mind if you sent me a letter every few weeks... haha if not that's fine too because I will be calling home Sunday at like 1ish but maybe not until like 3. but Have skype ready so we can chat it up! My whole family better be at my house so I can see their ugly faces! :) haha
Love Elder Maxwell
I love that you are serving. Do it well. No regrets in the next 16 months ahead! You will be proud to have served and served well.
We pray for your safety, health and strength and testimony on a daily basis.
Looking forward to seeing or hearing from you on Sunday. We have church from 10-1. So that’s 11-2 your time. Of course it will take us sometime to get home but we look forward to it ---- if you even want to call me/us. I will not say anything negative. I can’t function like that anymore.
I love you, I pray for you, I long for your success as a missionary, young man and hopefully someday a family man.