Thursday, April 28, 2016

5 weeks of letters and pics!

Transfer Planning                                                                                                  April 23, 2016
It's the last day or my one and only seven week transfer, that means that it's transfer planning week. That entails a lot of time spent in President's office looking at the transfer board and making changes as we feel inspired to do, lots of logistical work to make sure that the transfers themselves go smoothly and then other things to prepare for the upcoming transfer, so we've spent a lot of time in the office this week but that hasn't stopped us from having miracles and an awesome week.

So on Monday night we were beginning to pray after our planning and we realized that we hadn't set goals yet, so we did that and we felt inspired to set a goal that we would meet someone on campus who we would teach at the Institute right away... back to that in a second...

Tuesday morning we got a call from the sisters asking if we had a jack in our truck they could use because a lady's car broke down right in front of the Institute. So we went outside and it was the lady who lives next door to the Institute. Her tire had come off of the rim, so we got the jack,  got her car up and got the tire off. I wish I could take credit, but I wasn't a ton of help on the mechanical side of things. I tried my best to add humor to the situation. ha. The sisters built a good relationship with her during it all and she came to dinner with all of us that night which was sweet.

....back to the story, during the day when we got a chance to go finding, the first person we tried to talk to told us her name then gave a classic, "I'm in a hurry and not interested" response, so we didn't really get a chance to talk to her but the next girl was sweet. We talked about truly understanding God and not just knowing about Him. She was done with class early so had time and we taught her right then! It was an answer to prayer, a miracle and a witness of working toward an inspired goal. So cool!!! 

We had another similar experience. We had a ton to do yesterday and didn't have time to find, but we felt inspired to go outside and talk to ONE person. So we went out, and met a guy who we had met a few weeks ago, but it was really short and he just gave us his number so he could catch the bus. We had a great conversation and he said we could meet in the summer then Elder Sauer told him how we can make it 20 min. and he agreed to meet on Wednesday. That was a great witness of how when we act on spiritual promptings, they always work out. It's true, the only times they don't "work out" is because our definition of it and God's are different sometimes.

Transfer planning is a great time. It's pretty long and in reality we just stare at the transfer board and talk. The reason I like it is because I get to spend time with President Jacobsen and learn from him, and gain more experience with receiving revelation from someone who is so in tune with the Spirit. 

We are also teaching a LA named Sarah, who is really cool and making some great progress. Tatiyana is getting baptized next week on the 30th, so we are super excited for her. It will be a ton of fun! Wish me luck with driving all over the state on Monday! Tuesday will be a great reward, since we get to go to the Temple! Heaven on Earth!

I love you all and can feel your prayers strengthening me to do what the Lord needs me to do. 

Elder Chalmers

Sansu Sushi with our friends

MSU Spring game!!!

Ride that pony all the way to the font!                                                                                  April 18, 2016
Hey Everyone!
We had a great week here in the MLM. This week was dominated by Zone Conference. It took most of our time, energy, and focus, and was well worth it! 

We had our conference in Grand Rapids on Tuesday, then Midland on Wednesday and finished with our conference in Lansing on Thursday. They were great. We got to see all of our missionaries and had the chance to train them. 

I was able to train on the skill of "How to Begin Teaching" which is what you do with someone the first time you teach them. I focused on how it builds a foundation for conversion, and the important elements of it, being: inviting the Spirit, establishing expectations, and helping other recognize us as representatives of Jesus Christ. They all went really well and it was amazing how the Spirit worked through me on each of them, to tailor them to what each group of missionaries needed. The spirit of revelation and inspiration is real!

Elder Sauer did an awesome job training about finding by the Spirit, and how we need to testify, promise blessings in the name of Jesus Christ, and boldly invite. Everyone loved it, and we've heard a ton of success stories from the application of both of our training! :)

Sister Jacobsen taught us more about what it means to be a mission family and a team. She's great. President Jacobsen talked a lot about how we need to push ourselves to find out our true potential. He likes to say, "You can be as great as you want to be!" He's so inspirational! I love him. President Winder also taught a few cool principles (he's in the mission presidency). One is that when you say yes to something, you say no to something else, and in a relationship, any relationship, is our mentality, what can I get, or what can I give? 

The subject line for my email was something I said in one of the Zone Conferences, and people thought it was funny, so I thought I'd share it with you. :) I know how to speak nonsense from the best of them. :) 

We had a chance to find, and teach some lessons this week. We also did a lot of traveling on Saturday, to attend a few baptisms, which was really fun. This week is transfer planning week, so that should keep us plenty busy, between getting ready for it and going out and finding people who we can baptize!

I love you all so much and I'm so grateful for each of your prayers and faith!

KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS, in this there is safety, in this there is peace!

Elder Chalmers

Springtime in Michigan...not quite here...                                                              April 11, 2016
It may be April, but that doesn't mean much in Michigan. This week we had about 3 days of snow. It was more like snow/sleet/rain/hail and it was crazy. A month ago, it was 60 degrees. Pure Michigan. :) It's all good though, the weather today is better and it's supposed to keep on improving. We had a busy week. We have been preparing for our Zone Conferences this Tuesday-Thursday and also working hard, and praying hard to find new people to teach. 

We had a really cool experience on Friday. We were in the office and had decided to take lunch at that point since it seemed to make more sense, so we were about to walk into our apartment building, when we felt prompted by the Spirit to go and find right then. So we did! But nobody was giving us the time of day. They all seemed annoyed by us which was discouraging, but we didn't let it get us down. We said to each other, "They just aren't having it today..." But we were acting in faith and the next guy we talked to, named Daniel, had time to meet right then so we walked to the Institute and had a great first lesson with him. We invited him to be baptized on May 21 and he accepted. We even had a member there and he was great. We were super excited about it. It was an answer to prayer. As you would hope in all these stories, they go on to get baptized, however, he wasn't answering our texts, so we called him and when we asked if he still needed a ride to church, he hung up on us. We were both really discouraged about it. But as I've had time to let my emotions pass, I'm really grateful we were able to meet him. That miracle was what we needed at that time to continue to work hard, have faith, and be the Lord's hands. We still have a ton of other things going for us, like Tatiyana who is working to be baptized on April 30th and the gospel is still delicious to me. There isn't much more I could ask for. We met Daniel for us, not necessarily for him, even though I know that it will help him. God is mindful of each of our needs, no matter how small, and I'm so grateful for that. 

Another fun story...the power went out on MSU campus, and we'd got a guy to meet with us, since he had nothing better to do and the only room in the building that had an emergency light in it was the laundry room, so we were in a barely lit laundry room, teaching a guy. It was fun stuff. ha. 

I love you all so much!

Elder Chalmers

pics...What I/you think I look like when I teach...what I really look like. ha. President Jacobsen needed a picture of us teaching for his powerpoint so we had some elders take these as we practice taught them. haha. It was harder than I thought.

Keeping Busy in East Lansing                                                                                               April 4, 2016
Hey Everyone,
I'm sure everyone is on a spiritual high after General Conference this past weekend. What an amazing thing the Lord has instituted for us to hear from his chosen servants twice a year. I loved the way conference was started and finished, with President Eyring giving us guidance for how to make it the best, and what to expect, and then Elder Holland tying it all together and helping us know that our effort is what counts. This week we had some great experiences and got a lot of things done!

To start the week, we had trade offs with the Lansing elders, Elder Clark and Elder Schetselaar. I was with Elder Schetselaar (Sket-se-lar) at MSU. It was great. We had an awesome day and had a member come finding on campus with us for a few hours, it was super cool, and we had awesome success. We even had Austin get us Jimmy Johns which was great. 

On Wednesday, we went to South Haven where we attended Elder Haddock's district meeting and then spent the next few hours helping him and his companions move apartments. It was fun and some good work. I had a hard time staying awake on the way home. ha. 

We had a super sweet lesson with Tatiyana this week. She wants to be baptized, but things keep on getting in the way (Satan). So we brought it up, and talked a lot about opposition. She really loves her family, so we read D&C 84:20, about how we experience the power of God through the ordinances of the gospel and how as she makes covenants through ordinances, she can become a strength to her family. I compared it to basketball, and how Lebron is a strength to his team, and without him, they aren't as strong. It was a great lesson and we had our recent convert, Trey with us as well. She chose April 30th to be baptized, and we're excited for that. She even came to conference this week! 

I loved the talks by Elders Renlund, Hallstrom, Holland, Duncan, and many others! Very inspirational! I love the concept that life isn't fair and we should be thankful for that. Elder Renlund is great! The key to conference is the application of it!

Elder Chalmers
The Sisters' joke for Sister Fredline, the office secretary. ha. She's a "my way or the highway" type of lady.

"He is not here. He is Risen."                                                                                      March 28, 2016
I hope you all had a great Easter Sunday. Due to stake conference earlier this month, it was fast Sunday in the Lansing stake yesterday, so rather than an Easter program, it was fast and testimony meeting. It was different, but great and powerful. It was great, too, getting to be involved in the Church's Easter initiative, #Hallelujah. People were really receptive to it. 

This week we had our blitz in Traverse City. It was a lot of fun. I got to work with Elder Webb. He's a great elder, and we had a great time. The weather was also great. That night (Tuesday) I found out that Elder Joe Empey was involved in the bombing in Belgium. We as a mission had a moment of prayer for them which brought me a lot of comfort and I found out the next day that he'd be okay. I'm so grateful for that.

We cleaned out an apartment this week and it was quite a project.  We made 3 trips to Salvation Army and got to know the worker, Karen, pretty well. ha. Then we drove across the state to take some desks to Bay City and due to the weather, we ended up staying the night in Bay City. 

I was able to spend a day at WMU with Elder Hunter Johnson, our 4th trade off. We had a great day. We met a guy who lived in Fairbanks at Eielson AFB. We had some Alaska talk. We met a guy, who met with us right away, and it was a huge miracle. I'm excited for him to be taught.

We had a crazy lesson with a less active member, who is blind. He was skyping with someone when we came, and we eventually realized that the person on Skype was telling him what to say. We invited him to take the sacrament and we heard the girl say, "You know what to do." and also, "Get them out of here!" It was the weirdest thing ever...

The Marcou's (Midland) came to Lansing and took Elder Erekson and I out to dinner on Saturday. It was great to catch up with them, they are so great!

We had Easter dinner with the Burleson family which was great. They are super funny and great to be around. We are so blessed here in East Lansing. We are well taken care of!

I read a great scripture this morning that I'd like to share: Mormon 2:13 - "But behold this my joy was vain, for their sorrowing was not unto repentance, because of the goodness of God; but it was rather the sorrowing of the damned, because the Lord would not always suffer them to take happiness in sin." This is one thing I've gained a strong testimony of, righteousness will always lead us to ultimate happiness, and sin always leads to regret, guilt, and misery. Choose the Right. There is so much truth and wisdom in such a simple phrase. 

Elder Chalmers
Happy Easter!

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