Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas Day Skyping! Yay!

A photo of Bob and Wilson Skyping on Christmas Day! What a great blessing it was to be able to see Wilson and have a great time catching up on his mission life. He is doing great and SO happy doing missionary work! I loved watching his face and seeing how much he loves what he is doing, and how he loves the gospel and the Lord. Definitely one of those "mother moments"!

Wilson and Bob Skyping on Christmas Day

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas phone call and photos

From Bob and Dayna:

As we sat around the table playing a game on Christmas Eve, Bob received this photo on his phone. Wilson and his companion had been invited to go out with a family for their traditional Christmas Eve Chinese food dinner.

Christmas Eve 2012
We were able to Skype with Wilson on Christmas morning. It was amazing and wonderful to have the opportunity to see him and have a conversation with him. It made it seem like he wasn't that far away. He looked great and we could see the happiness just shining from his face. It was great to see him smiling and laughing and not one bit homesick or sad. What a wonderful Christmas present!

Later on in the day, Bob received another photo on his phone from a member. This one is of Wilson and his companion at the member's home. Doesn't he look great!?

Elder Simons and companion on
Christmas Day 2012

Monday, December 24, 2012

Quick Christmas Eve message

Hey mom it is good to hear from you. I'm so excited to talk to you all. It will be at ten or eleven tomorrow morning. So be ready. 

I'm going to make this email fairly short but I finished the Book of Mormon. It was so amazing. It really has changed me. I have such a different view and testimony on the Book. I'm so thankful for President Weston and the revelation he received to implement this in our mission. I love the Book of Mormon and I'm so grateful that I get the chance everyday to spread it and teach others of it. And to help others come to true knowledge of their and my Savior. I feel that this will be my favorite calling throughout my life. 

I'm thankful we have this sacred time to celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. Without Him we would all be lost because of the Fall. I know that we cannot return to God's presence except by and through the redeeming blood of the Son. I'm eternally grateful that I have the blessing of being able to share this wonderful saving news. 

Well I better get running. 
I love you!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Snow in Redding

Hey Mom,

So its funny that you talked about opening presents early. And yes I did but this year I won't. I remember when I was kid I would always go and find the presents and very carefully pull the tape back and look at my presents. I did that for a couple years. I got pretty good at it actually. Yeah I was a bad kid I know but I feel like I should confess now as opposed to when I'm home. I think I did that because I wanted to be able to focus on Christmas on the most important things, not presents. [ya, right!....] I was such a bad kid.

So our YSA investigator got baptized on Saturday. Such an amazing experience. After she said to us that should wouldn't have been here if it weren't for us. I thought about that for a bit and replied that no, I think that if any missionaries were there she would have been baptized. Which is so true and so humbling. The Lord needed her in His church so He called her and she responded and then in turn was baptized by the Priesthood of God. It is so wonderful to see God's hand work His mighty miracles. She is truly a miracle. She is such a light to everyone that knows her and I'm excited to see her grow and progress in the Gospel. 

On another note, an investigator from my old area got baptized as well. I heard it took him three times to get under. I wasn't able to go, which was too bad, but that is how life goes. 

Life other than that is amazing. I'm loving life right now. It snowed up here on Saturday. It was so awesome it reminded me of good old Utah. 

snow in Redding

I'm excited for Christmas. It will be a good day to just relax and take it easy. I love Christmas time. It is frustrating though because this time has been given to us to take it easy and reflect and ponder on the blessing that Christ is in our life but yet we still make it the busiest time of the year. Why is that? I don't even think there really is an answer but that's okay. 

I love life though. I have to go but thanks for all the prayers!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

I wanted to jump for joy

Thanks for the email mom. 

This week has been a good one indeed. So we had a lesson with our YSA investigator on Saturday and we told her that she needed to decide if she was going to get baptized on the 15th or not (she had said earlier in the week that she thought about that date) because we had to schedule things and do all that good stuff. So the day before we were telling her when we come over she needed to say yay or nay. So we come over and she is like "So I prayed last night and God told me that I need to be baptized on the 15th. I'm not backing down from this one. I'm still nervous but I'm getting baptized on the 15th." I wanted to jump for joy but I restrained myself. I love how we can get answers to our prayers. I have such a strong testimony that God will answer every one of our prayers if we but ask Him in full faith and are willing to act on whatever answer He gives us. I'm thankful she recognized the Spirit prompting her to be baptized. I'm thankful for the ordinance of baptism and the symbolism and sacredness of it. I'm thankful for the priesthood of the Almighty God that is given to worthy men so they can perform this saving ordinance. I love life, and I'm thankful for everything God has given me, and the wonderful people that He has put into my life on my mission. 

Let's see what else happened this mushrooms incidents thankfully.Transfer went smoothly. Well mostly smooth, we had Elder Jackson with us for a couple days. His comp had a baptism on Wednesday  so he stayed down there for a bit till Thursday. Elder Jackson is a good missionary. It was fun to have  him with us. 

Oh also Brother "Jones" [name changed] is getting baptized! This Sunday night. I'm talking to President Weston to see if i can go. If so Elder Rasmussen and myself will be going down there. I really hope he lets us go, its just a really far drive and the baptism is at a weird time. That would be like one of the best baptisms in my mission. He son is baptizing him I think. AHH I hope I can go. Speaking of which I better call President soon. 

So today for p-day we are playing pickle ball with this less active member and his wife who is of another faith. They talk smack like crazy. They told us we need to bring  notebooks because they are taking us to school and they are going to feed us dessert. So I'm kind of nervous actually. I really think they are good. I will let you know if we beat them. But thank  you for everything that everyone does for me. I truly appreciate it!

I love you all
Elder Simons

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Mushrooms the size of California

So this week was a good one. We had some weird things happen but that is okay. So first we got a text from one of our legit investigators in our family ward that was going to be baptized soon. And he said he was going to have suspend his Mormon studies. That was bad. It was really hard for us to hear that and deal with it, because he is so ready and willing to do what the Lord wants. We just boiled it down to the fact that maybe we just are not "his" missionaries. That's okay, just as long as eventually he is baptized into the true church. 

Also the YSA girl is doing good. She wanted to postpone her baptism so we are pushing it back and still working on a date. We will let you know when the date is. But she is still happy and doing good. 

So something crazy happened. we were driving to the church on Wednesday I think it was (it was really windy, 50 mph wind gusts, and it was also pretty rainy) and all of a sudden we hear this motorcycle revving its engine and we look ahead and this genius of a man was doing a wheelie and was doing it for a couple seconds and he starts getting really shaky and eventually falls and crashes and it was just crazy. His shoe was thrown like 80 feet and his motorcycle got beat up pretty bad. He was going like 50 or 60 down this road. So we are like "wow we better go and help him." It was just crazy so i figured I'd tell you. I never have seen someone crash like that. It reminded me how precious life really is and that we are so close to the other side every single day. Just interesting. 

So we had transfers this week. I'm staying along with my companion. So we are excited about that and are really expecting to see some good things happen this next transfer. 

I love Christmas. Its so interesting to think about Jesus Christ and how He is the only Begotten of the Father, the Prince of Peace and all these other amazing names that describe Him. He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords and yet He descended below everything. He descended below how I, myself, was born. I just marvel on how he could have born anywhere. He could have been born in an awesome kingdom with all of these amazing amenities but yet he let himself be born in a little barn of sorts. Christ's example is amazing. I fully believe that as we follow His perfect humble example we will be blessed and we will eventually return to live with Him once again. 

Another random story that is kinda funny. So we were over at this cool family's home and we had this good looking salad and I was pretty excited until I looked closely at it. It had mushrooms the size of California in them. They were huge. So I skillfully sifted what I grabbed with the tongs in hopes of not grabbing an extra large and nasty mushroom. So I put the salad on my plate and I sift thru it a bit and find that I have this huge mushroom. I was like "how did that happen?". So the whole time I was stressing on how I could hide this mushroom so the family wouldn't see it. So I continued to eat the rest of my food and the next thing I know the mushroom is gone from off my plate. I'm like "wow did I eat that thing, where did it go...oh no?"...but at the same time I was like "Sweet! I don't have to eat the dang mushroom anymore". So I just kind of shrugged it off and considered it a miracle. So yesterday I was telling my companion about my miracle and how I was so blessed and he just started laughing. I was like" yeah yeah what?" And he continued to tell me how he ate my mushroom while I was not looking. It was pretty funny. No matter how the mushroom left my plate I'm happy and blessed. 

Life is great! I love having these amazing experiences and having a smile on my face at the same time. I love my Savior and I know that He is with me every second of the day. This is His work, not mine. I'm just trying to be a tool and trying to sharpen myself through prayer and study so I can be better prepared to serve His Children. I love you all

Elder Simons

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Letter from missionary couple in Redding

Editor's Note: I received this email yesterday. Its always a nice surprise to get an email or letter from someone in the Roseville Mission. I left out the last name of the missionary couple since I haven't talked to them about putting the letter on the blog. Its nice to know there are so many people watching out for Wilson!

1 December 2012
Hello Missionary Mom:
I am Sister Nancy _______.  My husband, Kent, and I are serving a 23-month CES Mission at the Redding Institute of Religion.  We will be here in Redding until June 2014. 
Elder _______ and I have been asked by President Weston to inspect the apartments of the missionaries living in Redding every six weeks to make sure things are in order.  We also check to see if they need anything that the mission needs to replace.  Several furnace filters, a few batteries and one microwave later, things are looking good.   
We have just completed our November/December inspections and I wanted to let you know your son is healthy and happy; he looks great; he’s enjoying the mission; and he’s doing a great job as a missionary.  And, he’s helping to keep his apartment clean!   
It has been fun to interact with the missionaries in this way and Elder ________ and I look forward to our visits with them. 
I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year. 
Love from the mission field in Redding, CA.