Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Week #89

Howdy y’all! This week has been another great week! We have had a lot of things happen this week, and the Lord is continuing to hasten His work!

To start off we had 7 people come to church this past week, and they all show quite a bit of potential! That’s the most we’ve had in a while, and we are looking forward to some solid appointments this upcoming week!

Also, the highlight of all highlights, I was blessed with the opportunity to baptize James, someone I have grown to love a ton. He’s like a brother to me. It was great to see him again and to participate in a wonderful event. Pics will be attached.

We were also able to find a lot of families to teach this week. The work is definitely moving forward, and I will be sure to send more updates on them next week!

This week I wanted to share a few verses I came across in my studies. It is found in Alma 37:9, which reads;

“9 Yea, I say unto you, were it not for these things that these records do contain, which are on these plates, Ammon and his brethren could not have convinced so many thousands of the Lamanites of the incorrect tradition of their fathers; yea, these records and their words brought them unto repentance; that is, they brought them to the knowledge of the Lord their God, and to rejoice in Jesus Christ their Redeemer.”

This here is talking about the Book of Mormon. It was the power of the Book of Mormon that made the difference in Ammon and his brethren baptizing thousands of Lamanites! The power of the Book of Mormon is real! I know it, I have experienced it and have felt it’s power over and over again throughout my life. I challenge each of y’all to take my challenge from before and read it every day. I promise it will bless your life immensely. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

I hope y’all have a wonderful week this week! Until next week! God speed!

Elder Houssian

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Week #88

Howdy everybody! This week has been a stellar week! We have seen many miracles in the work and we have a ton of stuff happening! 

So my companion’s name is Elder Fuhriman! He’s from Bountiful, Utah and has been out for 6 months. He’s a great kid! There is a lot of work going on in our area. We have 6 people set to be baptized, and we are hoping to have 8-10 more preparing for baptism! The demographics here are a lot different than the rest of Henderson, which is super nice, new stuff to work with!

We had a lot of cool miracles happen this week, one of which happened Sunday night. We were walking around talking to people and felt impressed to stop by this part-Member family what was being taught a while ago but then fell off. We stopped by and the daughter opened the door, and up came the whole family! They were super excited to see us and were really interested in us coming back. Then the father asked us if we could talk to him alone outside, and we were nervous not going to lie. He asked us if we could keep his family in our prayers and pray that they will feel a “spark” while praying, reading, and taking the lessons. We of course said yes, and we are looking forward to coming back later this week to teach them!

My thought this week comes from the Book of Mormon, in Alma 7:12, and it reads;

“12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.”

I love this scripture. This is referring to the Savior and His Atoning Sacrifice. I know that our Savior knows what we are going through. He has felt it all. There is nothing that He can’t help us through, as long as we are willing to allow Him to step in. He knows how to succor us because of His great sacrifice. It is my prayer that each of us will strive to allow His mercy and love into our lives. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Have a wonderful week! I love y’all! Until next week, God speed!

Elder Houssian

Sent from my iPad

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Week #87

Howdy everyone! This week has been a great week! First off, Happy 20 Months  to my group from the MTC! It’s crazy how fast time has gone. A lot of things have happened! One of course is transfers......... Aaannnnnddddd I am staying! Just kidding, I’m leaving BUT I’m literally going across the highway to the Black Mountain Stake in the Desert Rose and Black Mountain wards! I’ll be serving with Elder Fuhriman (he has been out for about 6 months). I’m sad I can’t stay in this area anymore, but I’m excited for new adventures with a stellar companion!

This week has been another busy week which I love honestly. I had a massive thorn in my bike tire that I didn’t know about, so now I have a hole in my tube AND my tire. Ugh. That’s part of the mission though!

James is doing great! He’s on track for the 17th and is loving every second of it. He also asked me to baptize him which I’m stoked about! His mom wants to come to church and is already calling us her “sons”, so she won’t be too far behind him! Plus, James is already talking about baptizing his Mom AND he wants to serve a mission!

Besides that, it was another week on the job! I absolutely love being a missionary. I really wouldn’t want to be anywhere else right now. I love being a part of such a truly marvelous work. I have seen lives changed tremendously throughout my mission, including my own. I’m so grateful for the once in a lifetime opportunity I have to serve the Lord as a full-time missionary.

My spiritual thought comes from the Book of Mormon, in Alma 7:12, and it reads;

“12 ​And he will take upon him ​​​death​, that he may ​​​loose​ the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to ​​​succor​ his people according to their infirmities.”

I love this verse. It is a sweet reminder of the matchless love of our Savior, which He expressed through His Atonement. I love the word “succor”. Elder Jeffery R. Holland said “[Succor] is used often in the scriptures to describe Christ’s care for and attention to us. It means literally ‘to run to.’ What a magnificent way to describe the Savior’s urgent effort in our behalf. Even as he calls us to come to him and follow him, he is unfailingly running to help us”. The Savior will run to us in our times of need, IF we allow Him to. He is our Master, and I know undoubtedly that He knows us individually and He loves us. The Book of Mormon testifies of His life, ministry, and Atoning sacrifice. I know that as we strive to keep the commandments and access the Atonement of Jesus Christ when we make a mistake, He will heal us, help us, and change us. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Have a splendid week my friends! Until next week! God speed!

Elder Houssian

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Week #86

Howdy y’all! I hope y’all have had a great week! This week has been an amazing and busy week. The Lord’s hand is definitely active in this work, and I love it.

For starters, we have found a lot of new people to teach this past week, and some of the, are already progressing! There are a lot of families that we are teaching which is great! It’s amazing to see how the gospel changes people.

We received a referral from the Sisters for a kid who is 17 and was taking the lessons at a friend’s house who lives in the Sisters’ area. We started teaching him and he’s so solid! He’s set to be baptized on March 17th and is doing so well.

We had a crazy thing happen last night. We were able to give one of our investigators a blessing of comfort after her husband (who is in his 30s) was diagnosed with Leukemia. It was crazy because she had been at the hospital for a week, and last night was the only night she would be home, because he starts chemo today and so she is there and will be there for at least another week. We were about to leave our house after being dropped off from dinner, and I felt like we should stop by this family’s house on our way over there, so we did. She comes out and says “Why are y’all here so late?” (It wasn’t in a mean way, but it was 8 pm). We just told her we felt like we should stop by and she started bawling and told us what was going on. As we were sitting and listening I felt prompted to offer to give them blessings, so we asked if they would like one. It was so powerful, we felt the Spirit so strongly and she felt it super strongly as well. She sat there after for like 10 seconds with her hands on her chest and said “I can literally feel His presence” a few times. After I gave her the blessing, Elder Hubbell gave their daughter a blessing, and it was amazing as well. It was one of the most powerful moments I’ve had on my mission.

For my spiritual thought this week, I wanted to extend a challenge to each of y’all! I came across a quote that says “A chapter a day will light the way”. It’s referring to the Book of Mormon, and i challenge each of y’all to read it every day this week! I can testify that as we read the Book of Mormon daily, we will have the Spirit of the Lord with us and invite His presence into our lives. I have put this to the test and have experienced it countless times. I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God, and I know there is great power in its pages. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ amen.

My favorite scripture is Alma 5:45-46, and I challenge y’all to read it!

I hope y’all have a fabulous week! I love you all! Until next week! God speed!

Elder Houssian

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Week #85

Howdy howdy y’all! This week has flown by, and we have seen some big progress in our area this week in terms of finding. We have been out grinding every day looking for new people who are ready for the gospel, and God has helped us out big time (as always)!

We were finally able to talk with Tyler! We received a text about two weeks ago saying it wasn’t in his best interest to be baptized. We were confused but were able to set up a return appointment, which I talked about last week. Well we had that return appointment and he said the reason why was because he felt like he didn’t know enough, and he still had some questions about the gospel. He wants to be baptized still, just wants to feel more ready. So we are working with him and helping him progress and answering his questions to get him ready to be baptized!

We received some scary news that the father of one of our new families we are teaching, Rod, was in a serious motorcycle accident this weekend. Thankfully he is ok, but he had some pretty good injuries. Our ward mission leader is family friends with them and offered to give him a blessing, so we will hopefully go with him to the hospital and give him a blessing this week!

We were blessed with quite a few more people to teach this week. The Lord is hastening his work in our area, and it’s a wonderful sight to see. I love being a missionary and being a part of this great and marvelous work!

My spiritual thought comes from a verse I came across this week that I absolutely love! It is Moroni 8:17, and it reads;

“17 ...wherefore, I love little children with a perfect love; and they are all alike and partakers of salvation.”

I honestly just love this verse because I too love little children. Having 17 younger siblings and one niece is one of the greatest blessings I could ever ask for! Little children are perfect to our Father in Heaven and our Savior Jesus Christ. (And to me of course!) and I know that they truly are a tremendous blessing to this Earth! I know our Savior lives. He loves us. Jesus truly is the Christ. I know that the Book of Mormon truly is the word of God. It is a holy book of scripture written for our day, and we can grow so much closer to God by living the principles contained within. I know families are forever. I know our Savior suffered and died for us, and because of that we can be forgiven of our sins, we can be resurrected, and we can be with our families forever. This gospel is true, and I know it. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

I love y’all so much! I hope you have a tremendous week! Until next week! God speed!

Elder Houssian

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Week #84

Hey hey y’all! This week has been a trying week, one of the harder weeks I’ve had on my mission. But we were still able to see many miracles in our efforts this week, and it has strengthened my testimony tremendously. I know that our Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers, and He knows us individually, knows what we need, and knows how to help us. 

So this week we received a text from Tyler telling us that baptism wasn’t in his best interest anymore. It was definitely unexpected. We have tried to get in touch with him, but we haven’t been able to get any responses from him since. There was a miracle related to it though, which I’ll share in a minute!

The Redds have been MIA as well. We still have contact with them, they’ve just had the flu for 3 weeks now. We hopefully will be able to visit with them this week, they said that the sickness was starting to clear up. 

So in sit of all of this, we saw many miracles this week, two of which were on Thursday! The first one, we were in our companionship study trying to come up with different street contacting situations and responses to practice. We practiced a few different ones, and then went out. The very first person we walked up and talked to had the exact responses that we had practiced. It was way cool cause we were able to address her concerns and help her see how the gospel can bless her life, and she asked for us to come back! The second one, after not being able to see the Redds and having Tyler drop us, we were out and about and we’re blessed with finding six individuals who were ready and willing to hear the message of the gospel. It was a tender mercy from the Lord, and something that we really needed! The third miracle that I wanted to bring up happened yesterday. We had to go to Walmart because SOMEONE blew a bike tube (it wasn’t me, I swear.... ok it was). We went in and looked all over for a tube, but couldn’t find the right one. We were going to check out (our member needed some groceries) and as he was checking out, Tyler walked into the store! So we went and talked to him, and set up a time to go visit with him some more! It was a cool miracle and definitely attests that God’s hand is active in His work!

This week I wanted to share a scripture from the Book of Mormon, Omni 1:26, and it reads;

26 And now, my beloved brethren, I would that ye should come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption. Yea, come unto him, and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved.

I love this verse. We come unto Christ through fasting and prayer, studying the scriptures, and attending church. There of course are other things we can do, like serving others, developing Christ-like attributes, etc., but I have really come to know that it is in the simple things that we really come to know our Savior. If we truly offer up our whole souls unto him, we will find true happiness and joy, which happiness and joy is found in Christ. I know these things to be true. Christ lives. He is our Savior. The Book of Mormon testifies of the life, ministry, and love of the Savior. Coupled with the Bible, we have the fullness of the gospel at our disposal. It is up to us to use it. I say these things in the sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen.

I love y’all! Have a great week! Until next week! God speed!

Elder Houssian

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Week #83

Howdy everyone! This week has been super hectic and interesting! We had a lot of cool experiences and some unplanned things come up, but all in all, it was a stellar week!

We had an awesome Stake Conference this week with Elder Torres of the Seventy presiding at the meetings! We were out proselyting with some members and we received a call from a Stake High Councilor telling us that Elder Torres requested us to attend the Priesthood Leadership meeting that started at 4.... it was 3:55 when we received the call! So we booked it home (7 minute drive) and put on suits then jammed over to the church (another 7 minute drive) to attend the meeting. Afterwards, we talked to Elder Torres and he asked us if we were attending the adult session that night. Before we could answer, he said “Elders, I need missionaries at every one of my meetings”. So basically this General Authority told us to attend the adult session as well! I was glad we did though, I learned so much from Elder Torres. He is a very inspired man and speaks with conviction, and I loved it! 

Yesterday we were just about to eat lunch when we received another call from some Elders asking if we could help some people move. We agreed, and went to help this lady move. Elder Olsen and I lifted 2 washing machines, 2 driers, 1 freezer, 2 stoves,  and 2 refrigerators all by ourselves. It was super crazy, I’m so sore! That took about 2 hours, and then after we went and helped pain some outdoor stairs with our district, which took another 2 hours. So that took up most of our day. BUT our district combined did 16 hours of community service that day, so bonus!

My spiritual thought this week comes from a talk by Elder David A. Bednar titled “Converted Unto Thee”. He shares a passage from the Book of Mormon, and then breaks it down, talking about the relationship between a testimony and personal conversion. The verses read;

“As many as were brought to the knowledge of the truth, through the preaching of Ammon and his brethren, according to the spirit of revelation and of prophecy, and the power of God working miracles in them--yea, … as the Lord liveth, as many of the Lamanites as believed in their preaching, and were converted unto the Lord, never did fall away.
“For they became a righteous people; they did lay down the weapons of their rebellion, that they did not fight against God any more. …
“Now, these are they who were converted unto the Lord” - (Alma 23:6–8)

He then goes on to say that there are “two major elements described in these verses: (1) the knowledge of truth, which may be interpreted as a testimony, and (2) converted unto the Lord, which I understand to be conversion to the Savior and His gospel. Thus, the powerful combination of both testimony and conversion unto the Lord produced firmness and steadfastness and provided spiritual protection.” I know that as we build and strengthen our testimony, we become more and more converted unto the Savior and His gospel. We strengthen our testimony by doing the simple things: read and study the scriptures, praying fervently and often, and attending church weekly to partake of the sacrament, and to teach and learn from one another. We will grow spiritually, strengthen our ability to feel and heed the promptings of the Spirit, and truly become converted. Conversion is not a one time thing, it is a life long process, and the more we develop the habits of doing the simple things, the more constant and powerful our conversion process will be. I know that our Savior lives. He loves us and He wants the best for us. He truly suffered and died for us. We cannot sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines. I know families can be together forever, and I’m so grateful for the blessing it is to have my family forever. I know that the gospel is true, and I know the Book of Mormon, coupled with the Bible, can bring us the most joy and happiness in this life and the life to come. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

I love y’all and I hope y’all have an amazing week! Until next week, God speed!

Elder Houssian
‘63 Corvette we saw today 😍