Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Epistle - 6.30.10

Hey there everyone!

Another week has passed. The first week in this transfer. The first
week is always funny, there's just so much to get done!

Last Wednesday I spent from about 7:00am to 6:00pm just driving people
around for transfers. Bikes, desks, beds, dressers, luggage,
everything necessary to make everything work. Fun stuff!

I suppose the biggest news this week is a Mission President change.
President and Sister Matsumori officially arrived yesterday, and
President and Sister Mansell fly out later today. Amazing to see them
go. President Mansell has done incredible things with this misison.
When he got here the obedience levels were NOT very high, and under
his stewardship This has become an obedient, hardworking mission.
Amazing to see what a good steward can do with the Lord's help.

One funny thing this past week was a call from President on Monday. He
told us that Elder Rich (The director of the Visitor's Center) had
organized a mission prep class for Aaronic Priesthood age young men,
and invited all 4 stakes in the mission, and then forgot! So when he
got a call from one of the stakes about it two days before the event,
he remembered that he had promised them a whole program put on by
missionaries from our mission. Talks, testimonies, musical numbers.

So President told us we were to go bail him out and provide a musical
number, which of course we gladly did. We did "His Hands" as a duet
(For the third time). It went well, and that's all we had to do for
the program.

You know I'm just not sure what else to talk about! How about the weather?

The weather today is GORGEOUS. It is partly cloudy and 72 degrees
outside. That makes for a very happy Elder Adams!

And I suppose that's the best note to end on. A happy Elder Bear.
Things are good.

I love you all!
-Elder Ted E. Bear

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Epistle - 6.23.10

Good Wednesday Everyone!

Transfers! And the word is.... I'm Staying! With Elder Peterson!

We're really excited. It's what we had hoped for, and it's what we
got. It's nice when those two things line up so nicely.

I had several previous companions go home today, it was funny to see
them off. Some of them are excited for the next step in life. Some
just have "Deer-In-Headlights" look, because they don't have a clue
what they'll be doing tomrorow.

Speaking of previous companions, my trainer, Payton Brooks came to
visit the mission this past week. He came to Anacostia's Father's Day
Lunch on Sunday, and he was at the Why I Believe. It was fun to talk
to him about the mission and what he's doing now.

Elder Peterson and I were able to resing his quintet version of "Jesus
Savior Pilot Me" on Sunday at the Why I Believe, it went very well. We
did a better job all remembering the words than we did at the mission

We met some neat new investigators the last couple days. On Monday we
taught a guy named Charles. We went to the house to teach his daughter
in law, whom he lives with, but she wasn't there. So we told him we
were there all ready to teach a message about our savior Jesus Christ,
and we'd love to teach him instead, and he let us in. The lesson went
well. By the end he commented we had given him a lot to think about
(And that's basically what we do) and he agreed to read and pray about
it to find out the truth of it. That's all we ask for! So that was

Tuesday we finally got to teach a lady we've been trying to teach for
a while, and we kept having things come up. But this time we were able
to go teach her. Her name is Gloria. She's sort of a funny one,
because she met with missionaries a couple years ago, and again last
year at her mom's house, and she commented "But this time I plan on
being steadfast". So we thought perhaps she already knew most of our
message and wanted to actually join the church this time, but in our
teaching we discovered that she didn't really know much about our
message, which was sort of weird, and she wasn't really all that open
to some of what we said. So I'm not quite sure what the deal is there,
but we'll see if she's humble enough to hear the spirit speaking truth
to her, if she is we'll be happy to baptize her, and if she's not
we'll find those who are.

I think that's one big change in my missionary work I'm seeing lately.
I'm becoming about as bold as I wish I had been all along. Quite
frankly we're out here to find those who will receive us, and there's
enough of them out here that we just don't have enough TIME to spend
it with people that aren't humble enough to follow the spirit. We
simply don't have time for it, we can't do it. So I'm becoming more
and more commited to boldly testify and commit these people, and if
they don't like it all the time, well, last I checked not everyone
liked Christ's boldness either. And, seeing as He's my master, I
suppose I should do as He did, not as the people will like the most.

I love you all. Cherish  your time, it is one of our most previous and
non-renewable resources.
-Elder Ted E. Bear

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Epistle - 6.9.10

Good Wednesday Everyone!

More fun this week. We had another Night of Music and Inspiration last
night. We were called a week ago and asked to put together a version
of "I feel my Savior's love". My companion, Elder Peterson put
together a beautiful arrangement for the occasion. It's fun being the
companion of a genius.

So what is there else to talk about... I just can't think of anything
else exciting that happened in the last week... oh wait, there might
be one thing...

Ya so Sunday was Stake Conference, and we had a guest speaker, I think
he was from Utah, his name was something like Elder Hallard? Maybe
Holland? Ya I think that was it, I think it was Elder Jeffrey R.
Holland of the Quorum of the 12 Apostles, with Elder Hardy of the 70.
Ya I think that's who came and reorganized the stake, released the
current Stake presidency and called a new one. I guess that's SOMEWHAT
noteworthy. =]

In all seriousness, Elder Holland was here. Stake conference started
at 10:00, we had no investigators to bring, so we were on our own. SO
we woke up at 5:30, got to the stake center at 7:00, and got 5th row
seats =] The stake center was so packed that they ran video to every
single classroom they could throw a TV in as overflow and they filled
all of them. And we were on the 5th row. It was pretty special. We
figured we didn't have much else to do on a Sunday morning than Study
our Scriptures in the chapel and get some great seats!

He was predictably incredible, and said some amazing stuff. He
mentioned that in his oppinion there is no more regular form of
revelation in all the church than when just about every Sunday in many
stakes all over the world, two guys who don't know anyone in the stake
shows up on Friday, and in 24 hours completely undoes everything that
holds the stake together, and sticks it all back together another way
with new people whom he has never met before this 24 hour period, then
asks everyone if it's OK, they raise their hands and say yup. I might
not even know those guys but if it's OK with the Lord it's OK with us,
and then the strangers leave!

His point was, that is NOT normal. No other organization could pull
that off. If it were a business or any other organization there would
be blood on the carpets, slashed tires and black eyes. Fist fights and
campaigning for the position, whereas in this organization the only
campaigning is maybe to NOT get the position.

It was a neat reminder, to stop and think how incredible this
organization is. The fact that it even WORKS for a single day is a
lasting testament that it is from God, the fact that it's still going
strong hundreds of years later is a miracle and a testament to all the
world of the truth of the restoration, and the divine nature of the
calling of Joseph Smith in organizing the Lord's Kingdom on the earth.

The church is true, the book is blue brothers and sisters. Don't you
forget it =]

-Elder Ted E. Bear

Monday, June 7, 2010

Epistle - 6.2.10

Good Wednesday Everyone!


Todays epistle will be dedicated to my dad! He loves little spiritual thoughts and thinks that he can ponder and study, so I'll share something that hit me yesterday during a district meeting.


It comes from the book of Helaman, 10th Chapter, 4th and 5th verse:


4 Blessed art thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done; for I have beheld how thou hast with unwearyingness declared the word, which I have given unto thee, unto this people. And thou hast not feared them, and hast not sought thine own life, but hast sought my will, and to keep my commandments.

  5 And now, because thou hast done this with such unwearyingness, behold, I will bless thee forever; and I will make thee mighty in word and in deed, in faith and in works; yea, even that all things shall be done unto thee according to thy word, for thou shalt not ask that which is contrary to my will.


Now normally when I've heard people read these verses. I normally hear a comment to the effect of "Wow, Nephi is so amazing that God says he won't ask anything contrary to the Lord's will, so anything he says will be the Lord's will!"


But a new thought hit me this time, the Lord does NOT say "Thou WILT not ask that which is contrary to my will", no, he says "Thou SHALT not ask that which is contrary to my will". That is not a statement or prophesy, that is a commandment. It is worded in the same way the Lord worded the ten commandments, "Thou shalt not..."


Now just to see if I was interpreting the language correctly I flipped to the foot notes, and found this, D&C 46:30:


30 He that asketh in the Spirit asketh according to the will of God; wherefore it is done even as he asketh.


I interpret "asking the Spirit" to mean asking for things as the Spirit directs you, basically receiving revelation from God on what we should pray for. To me this seems to agree with the idea that the words "Thou shalt not ask that which is contrary to my will" is not, in fact, a statement necessarily about the character of Nephi, but a commandment to Nephi, that if he follows he can receive the blessing of having all of his prayers answered.


So there's my pondering today, maybe the rest of you had already realized that, but new idea to me!


On to updates about life,


Jaymie's baptism went wonderful, he asked me to perform the ordinance, and I couldn't talk him in to getting one of the members to do it, so this is the second time I got in the water during my mission. I prefer members to do that so they can have that experience with someone more permanent, but when I am asked to do it, it is a very neat experience to perform that ordinance. What fun.


The zone activity today was a blast. We ended up with softball about half the time, a couple games of Ultimate Frisbee, and then we had to flee the heat for lunch. All in all everyone was happy and a very good time!


I hope you all are having a wonderful time!


Till next time,


Elder Ted E. Bear