Monday, June 30, 2014

Hot and Humid!

June 30, 2014

I finally know what everyone was talking about when they told me that Michigan is humid. The first week here wasn't bad at all, but this Saturday was something else. It was 95 degrees outside and we were at the "Tridge" personal contacting people. It also didn't help that it was insanely humid. There was an amateur radio festival thing going on. So one guy was showing us the inside of his RV and it was an oven in there, but then finally he opened the windows, which was a life saver. 
We taught some cool people this week. We taught Brian, who is 18 like me. We went for a walk with him (4 long miles) and just talked. We stopped at a park halfway and taught him the Restoration (lesson 1). He understood everything we said, and seemed really interested. He is sorta on a personal spiritual journey, so hopefully he will want to learn more. We also taught Joe, which was the craziest experience of my life. He wants to be baptized, but he is waiting for 1st presidency approval, because of something he did in his past. Which he "kindly" told us about... Then he told us that we didn't need to be afraid of him. I still don't know what to think of it. Then we taught a guy named Adam. His wife got baptized a while ago, but then she fell away. We got to his house and he told us that he didn't believe in God, but then we had an hour lesson with him on faith, and we are meeting with him tomorrow, so we'll see how it goes. We also met with a guy named Blake, who I talked a lot of sports with, which was a tender mercy. We are meeting with him tonight, and painting miniatures with him which should be cool. He was awesome. We met with Lee and just talked for a while, he is one of the nicest, most generous people I have met. He gave us 160 lbs of weight for our apartment. We now have 390 lbs in there. Elder Hess really likes to work out.
I got to be a spotter in a baptism on Friday. The sisters were the ones who taught her, her name is Bonnie. She was being baptized by Curt Cormier, who just got baptized 2 months ago, he is so awesome. But she has some health problems, so they needed someone to be in the font to help bring her back up, so I got to do it. It was really cool.
We were knocking doors and met the nicest lady ever. She talked with us for a while and then told us that she wasn't interested at all in the church, but she was still really nice. She then told us that we had better hurry home because we have to be home by 9. I don't know how she knew that....
Elder Hess and I lift weights most mornings, which is good for me, he is a lot stronger than me though. I talked to a Brazilian lady yesterday who told me about the game against Chile, which was like a kick in the groin, because I would have really liked to watch that. I did get to watch a little of the France and Nigeria game in the mall today though..... ha.
All is well in Midland, Michigan. I still miss you all like crazy and still feel like 2 years is an eternity and a half away, but oh well. I love you.

Elder Chalmers
                                          The Tri-Bridge (Tridge)
                                          Me and Elder Hess sporting awesome ties
                                         Curt, Bonnie and me at Bonnie's baptism

   June 23, 2014
How's it going everybody?!
So my last week in the MTC was awesome. I got along really well with the other district in my zone who were all going to Baltimore. Elder Chee and I were best friends.(Cheelmers) We would always joke around about how we were going to punch people in the face and about how Elder Adams was such a ladies man. Our whole zone also had a joke that whenever one of the elders would be talking to a sister, we would all start acting like we were reeling in a fishing pole, like they were "reeling them in" it was pretty fun. So they left on Tuesday morning, so I was without them, but it was okay. Elder Ballard spoke at our Tuesday night devotional and it was awesome! He told us to never be embarrassed of our faith and to stand up for it. 
So we left the MTC at 4:30 a.m on Wednesday and headed up to the SLC airport. It was really cool because it was dark so all the temples we passed on our way up were the only things lit up. It was awesome talking to Mom, Dad, and TK at the airport, but it took all I had to keep my composure because it was super hard to say goodbye and I didn't want to have a breakdown in the airport. I also tried to call Courtney like 5 times... but I still love my SIS! I also called Cason, but he didn't answer, he e-mailed me though and said he picked it up right after it stopped ringing, so it was close. I tried to call Rylee but I don't think she had service, and her voicemail box was full so I couldn't even leave a message. I slept the whole first flight to Minneapolis, and I wanted to call, but I let Elder Erekson use my card so he could call home.
When we got to Lansing we were greated by Pres and Sis Hess and the assistants. One of the assistants, Elder Jeff Derricott from Bountiful says he knows Megan? We got all our stuff and took a pic then went to the mission home. When we were walking down the stairs to put our stuff on the beds, Elder Adams fell down the entire flight of stairs, it was so funny, you got to love the tender mercies of the Lord. ha. Don't worry though he was okay. Then the assistants took us to Michigan State University campus and we did some personal contacting. Elder Adams and I talked to a couple of guys from China, and they were pretty interested and we gave them each a Book of Mormon, it was really cool. So that night we were all interviewed by Pres. Hess and the assistants taught us about backing the cars, pride, and other stuff.
So on Thursday we went to the Stake center and we got informed how to use our cards, and stuff about how the apartments and cars work. One of the older sisters who works in the office kept telling us not to punch a hole in the wall?! Must be a good story there. So after that they lined up all the new missionaries across from the trainers and gave all the trainers their paper with our names on it, so they all flipped them at the same time and then came and found us. My trainer is named Elder Hess. He is a pretty distant relative of the Pres. He is from Idaho and really likes golf and sports and music. He looks a lot like Braxton Kunde. He has been out for 8 months and is 21, he graduated in 2011. So we got a ride to Mt. Pleasant to get our car, and then went to Midland. 
Midland is a really nice little town. The only reason it exists is because it is where the company DOW Chemical is. Everyone we meet works for them somehow. So our first day we went to the Tridge (Tri-Bridge) and did some personal contacting. It was pretty good, we got 22 ITL's (Invitation to learn) which is pretty good for a day. So all of our progressing investigators are out of town, so we knocked a lot of doors and talked with a lot of people this week. We did teach 2 lessons though. One was to Ben, who is a less accountable guy since he got in a motorcycle accident a while ago, and the other was to Aaron. He is my age and has a lot of really good questions. We taught him for like an hour. He just really wants to find out religion on his own, so we are going to teach him some more. Overall this week has been pretty good. But, I really miss you all a lot. I have been pretty homesick since being here. Elder Hess has really helped me though, which I really appreciate. The mission is pretty hard, but I know I can do it with the Lord's help. I love you all and miss you. 

Elder Chalmers.

P.S. my address:
2201 Ashman St. Apt #2
Midland, MI 48640

                                          Elder Chee, Elder Chalmers and Elder Moss

                                          SCHS Represent!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

And so it begins...

FIRST P-DAY!!                                                                                     JUNE 12, 2014

I don't even know where to begin. This past week has been nuts. I never thought I would learn so much, but looks like I did. We do a lot of studying here. Like after breakfast almost everyday we study for 3-4 hours both as a district, personally, and as a companionship. I love my whole zone especially Elder Chee and Elder Moss. Elder Chee is a Navajo and his name is Samuel, he is like my Sam Slivers away from home. Whenever he does something I call it the Chee guarantee! ha. Elder Moss is 22 and is from Washington. We talk about SNL all the time, its some fun times. Too bad both of them are going to Baltimore. We started teaching the day after we got here. Right now we are teaching Jay, who is really our teacher Brother McNiven acting like some one he taught on his mission. On our third lesson with him he just said he wanted to be baptized at the beginning of the lesson, which kinda threw us off, it was funny though. We also have our TRC investigator, Ben. All of the people at the TRC are paid to let us teach them. But some of them aren't actually Mormon, its kinda weird, but really cool. Ben is really into Crossfit, so I have something to talk to him about, but Elder Adams has no idea what's going on. haha. I love him to death.
So I am Zone Leader, and that meant that yesterday we had to do orientation for the new missionaries. All of them are going to Salt Lake City Central mission, except for two are going to San Antonio. The district that just left was awesome though. They are going to Minnesota. Elder Boekweg was hilarious. So were Elder Knaphus and Young. Elder Lowe was pretty quiet, and he was like 6 foot 8. Eric Mika is here. I sat next to him during our Zone leader training. We were just talking and joking around, it was pretty cool. I have seen Weston Esplin, Nate Gottfredson, Zach Kennedy, Braxton kunde, Sydnee Yates, Daniel Jones, and Michael Coleman. Weston and I sat next to each other in the choir for the Tuesday devotional where Quentin L. Cook spoke. I really liked when he told us to not get discouraged if we feel like we aren't capable. It is so true. Often times you feel like you can't teach well enough, but you just have to remember that it is really the spirit teaching, not you. 
Our gym time is in the morning most days, so I usually play basketball. When I was playing yesterday this elder who played high school ball at Mountain Crest asked me if I played high school ball and said I was pretty good, so I felt pretty cool.
The first week was pretty tough, but once I got to Sunday, it was all good. It is still hard, but I honestly love it here. I can't wait to get to Michigan, but I don't want to leave all of the friends I've made. 
My favorite part of the day is definately 9:30- 10:30. It is when us elders just get to have a party. We have a zone dance and handshake that the other elders who just left taught us. It is pretty sweet and we do it all the time. We just joke around and stuff. The night before the other elders left we had a competition to see who would get to keep the district box, full of treats and stuff, the other Baltimore district beat us in a push-up contest. Elder Chee put the guarentee on it...
I love all you guys and love hearing from you, If you want some serious inspiration on faith read Ether 12.
Elder Chalmers

HELLO! FROM THE MTC                                                                   JUNE 7, 2014

We were given special permission to e-mail you guys today! Usually my P-day will be on Thursday, but I only get one P-Day while I'm here. I just want you to know that I'm going great and all is well. The first day and night here were the worst ever. I just missed you guys and really wanted to go home and keep living my life but ever since then the days have gotten better and better. I really like my companion, His name is Elder Adams. He is from North Ogden and is 19. We don't really have the same interests at all but we get along really well. He is really knowledgable about the Gospel, which is just an added bonus. I have already learned so much from being here. Our days are jam-packed. We actually did get a little free-time this morning though. We lucked out and got the easiest service assignment, which is setting up chairs, then we decided to just get a sack breakfast so we didn't have to dress in our church clothes to get into the cafeteria, which gave us and hour and a half of free time. I was able to write a letter to Rylee, and I also wrote you guys a letter on the first day, which I put in the mail this morning so be looking for it. I miss you guys a lot but I know that I'm here for a reason. I really can't wait to get to Michigan so I can start teaching, but I have lots to learn still. We are actually teaching a progressive investigator right now, which is just our teacher acting like someone he taught on his mission, but it's cool how he can just change like that. We got him to semi-commit to baptism on the first lesson, which was pretty cool. We leave for Michigan on the 18th. Our flight leaves at 8:45, for Minneapolis, so I think I will be able to call before my first flight, or maybe even during our layover in Minneapolis, but our layover isn't long at all. Elder Adams and I are the zone leaders starting Sunday, which is pretty cool. Our zone includes our district and one other one. All of the people in the other district are going to Baltimore, they are pretty sweet. My whole district is going to Lansing. There is Elder Adams and I. Then Elder Lowder, who is from Boise and is 24 years old! Elder Erekson is my age, I will send you a picture on Thursday of him, he reminds me a lot of Josh Dame. Then we have a threesome of sisters. Sister Lindemann, Brewer, and Guest. They are all really nice. I love and miss you guys and loved all the e-mails and pictures you sent me. I will have more time to write on Thursday. I LOVE!!!

Elder Chalmers