Monday, December 14, 2015

"Homeless" Missionary

Me and Mr. & Mrs. Claus - AKA President & Sister Snow! 
Transfers! It looks like I'll be getting the axe after all! I'll be going out of valley! That's mission speak for Arizona. The place I'm going is called Dolan Springs. It's right above Kingman Arizona, which I tell you because it might be hard to find on a map otherwise, ;). My new area actually covers five small towns, and is one of the biggest areas in the mission. It'll be about as different from a biking area as you can get, because this area actually has a truck so as to be able to navigate all of the washes. (There is only one paved road in Dolan Springs). The missionaries in the area average about 3000 miles a month! I'll be living in a trailer, which according to Arizona state law, means I'm technically homeless! Didn't think that would come up on my mission! Haha!  The area is also very poor. The reason I have all of this information about the new area, is it's actually the area that Elder Dixon came from right before we met! Not much news on the new companion though. His name is Elder Andersen, and he's been out 2 transfers longer than I have, but that's about all I know! Also, apparently I'll be able to receive letters and packages at the mailbox in Dolan, because the mission office doesn't want to have to send all of the mail from the middle of Las Vegas that far south. All in all, I'm really excited!
Elder Dixon and I wearing a LOT of leather.  It was given to us by a wonderful less active family, but we're still not sure why!
As far as this last week goes, it's been really good! We had the chance to go to the temple with one of our members, which is always so amazing! If there's one thing I miss about being in a mission, it's not being able to go to the temple whenever I want.

Wednesday was a mission Christmas conference, which was really amazing! I was able to see a lot of friends from around the mission, and learn a lot from the trainings that were given!

The last few days have been crazy trying to say goodbye to everyone, and pack. I've come to love the people of this area so much, it's strange to think that I didn't know anyone at all here 4 short months ago. But I know that I'll love the people in my new area just as much, and that it's the place the Lord wants me to be!

I'll be sending some pictures of some of my favorite families in the ward, and hopefully a few more from tonight next week!
The Hudman's

The Pierce Family

The Russell's

Sister Royal and her daughter Rachel

Me and Bishop Marshall
I haven't sent my ponderizing thoughts home in a while, but I especially liked the scriptures I chose this week! They were the scriptures referenced in a conference talk I recently read by President Monson.  
  • ·         John 15:8 "Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples." This says that all we have to do to glorify God is to "bear much fruit" or have many good works.
  • ·         3 Nephi 18:24 says, "Therefore, hold up your light that it may shine unto the world. Behold I am the light which ye shall hold up--that which ye have seen me do." As we do the things that Christ would do, we glorify him. If you are living your life the right way, people will notice the kind of person you are and start to wonder why you're that way, and that's when they can start to see that it's because of Christ. The first step is to be an example!
  • ·         1 Peter 2:12 "Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation."  Some people won't ever recognize your good works in this life. But even though they might call you an "evildoer" if you continue to live the gospel, someday they will recognize your actions for what they were.

I love you all so much! Merry Christmas!
Elder Excell

One of our favorite billboards in our area! Not sure what the quotes mean, but it can't be good!

Q&A - 12/14/15

1.) If my memory is correct, you were supposed to find out about transfers this weekend. We are anxious to hear what you found out!! Will you be staying in the same area? Will Elder Dixon still be your companion? 
2.) How do you feel about your assignment for the next seven weeks?  --I'll answer the first 2 in the main letter. 

3.) What are your plans for our Christmas Day phone call? Will we be speaking on the phone or will you be able to FaceTime or Skype? How long will we have to chat?  -- Either FaceTime or Skype. I'm supposed to keep it to 30-40 minutes. Not sure on a time yet. I'll have a better idea next week! 

4.) Did you receive our Christmas package? I'm sending #2 on Tuesday or Wednesday of this week. Hopefully, you'll get it next Monday. :)  --I got the first one! I may have a new address for you to send the second one to, ;). 

5.) What are you looking forward to this week?  --The unknown!

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