Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Week #30

Howdy y'all! Another week down. It's crazy to think that January is already over! Man how the time has flown, this month went by too fast. I hope your lives are treating y'all well and everything is going well for you. 

This week we were privileged to watch a missionary broadcast that was shown to missionaries throughout the world and hear instruction and training given by some Apostles and other General Authorities. At the end, they announced some new changes to the missionary schedule. These changes give us the opportunity to decide when to hold companion study during the day so it best fits our schedule, daily planning is moved to the morning instead of at night, and the best one of all, P-day starts 2 hours earlier, so bonus right there. 

The same day as the broadcast, we got a call from one of the APs with some sad news. Our notorious 3-pack was no more, as AP Wightman told us that there was a missionary coming into our mission while waiting for his Visa to go out of the country for his mission. That meant that they needed someone to be his companion, so Elder Moen was asked to leave and go be companions with another missionary in the East Stake. It was a sad day for us all, but duty calls, and you answer while in the service of the Lord. That next morning, Moen was all packed, we said our goodbyes, and our Zone Leaders picked him up and took him to his new area. Now we're down to 2!

Saturday we had an awesome day with a friend of mine from North Las Vegas, Brian. He came down to see Elder DeMott and I, and also picked up two other missionaries, Elders Day and Romero, who I get along with really well. So it was a fun afternoon! It was great to see him again!

I wanted to share an experience I had this week that involved acting on the the promptings of the Spirit. We were at dinner with the Bowler family on Thursday night, and they asked what our plans were for the rest of the night. We had 2 lessons scheduled that night and so we were talking about those. While we were talking, I had this thought come to my head to go stop by this member family that lived 4 houses away from the Bowlers. We had just been there the day before visiting with them, and we also had 2 lessons that night so I didn't see how there could be time since we walk everywhere. So I kind of put it on the back burner. A few minutes later, we get a text from one of our lessons asking to reschedule, and then a few more minutes after that we got a text from our lesson asking to reschedule, and I felt that feeling to go visit this family again.  So after dinner we turned down many offers for a ride up the hill from the Bowlers, and Elder DeMott had no idea what was going on so he thought I was crazy for denying a ride. We got out and I explained, then we walked to this house, knocked, and one of their daughters answers the door and said "Hey, I'd let y'all in but my dad is asleep on the couch with a headache". We didn't want to bother him or wake him up, so we just talked at the door for a minute and then left. Not even 2 minutes later we get a call from Sister Morgan, the mom of the family, asking us to come back and give Brother Morgan a blessing. We immediately came back and Brother Morgan was in bad shape. He had taken tons of meds to help the headache and nothing was working, he could barely move, barely talk, anything. Elder DeMott anointed his head and I sealed the anointing and gave him a blessing. The Spirit was felt in that room that evening and it hit me so strong. We finished the blessing and away we went. Our day ended and we returned to our apartment and received a text from Brother Morgan saying his headache was completely gone, and thanked us for being worthy to hold the priesthood and for being there to help. It really testified to me that the power of the priesthood is real, and also testified to me how important it is to act on the promptings of the Spirit.

My spiritual thought this week comes from D&C 8:2 and says
"2 Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart."

In this scripture of the Doctrine and Covenants, we are told that the Holy Ghost will help us make decisions and know what to do. The power of the Holy Ghost is real. The Holy Ghost plays such an important role in our lives in giving us guidance, knowledge, peace, comfort, and so much more. Without the Spirit in our lives we would be lost. I know that as we continue to live worthily of the presence of the Spirit and strive to be more like our Savior, we will feel the influence of the Savior more in our lives and we will be guided and strengthened though the ups and downs of this life. Brothers and Sisters, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ lives and loves us all. He is waiting with open arms to receive us. May we all continue to strive to be more like Him and live in accordance with His will. I say these things in His name, even Jesus Christ, amen.

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. I love y'all so much! 

Elder Houssian

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Week #29

Howdy y'all! Man what another awesome week this week. I'm sure y'all's week was great as well! It's great to hear from so many of you! This week has flown by fast. 

This week we went on exchanges with our District Leader. With there being 3 of us, it makes it a lot different haha. I went into the District Leader's area with Elder Bissitt, and our District Leader, Elder Thomas, came into my area with Moen and DeMott. Elder Bissitt and I had a lot of fun in his area, and we went on splits! So I went with a member who I didn't know at all 😂it was a lot of fun. Elder Bissitt is from Alberta, Canada, so it was cool talking about Canada and what's different up there compared to down here in the good ole U.S. Of A!

Elder DeMott has been sick this whole week, and has started getting Moen pretty sick and now I'm feeling it a little bit too. But thanks to our pharmacist friend, Bro Ramirez, we've been able to go out and work for the most part. He's hooked us up with some Advil Sinus and Congestion stuff (that's not the name hahaha) and some Mucinex which has helped. On Friday, it was cold and raining, hard. That was Elder DeMott's peak for sickness, and Elder Moen was feeling it too, so we stayed in most of the day so that the weather wouldn't make it worse for them.

Saturday, we went on a temporary exchange with Elder Thomas again. Elder Bissitt had a baptism, so while he was gone I went with Elder Thomas and went and did some work. Perks of having a 3-pack right?! Elder Thomas and I came out together so it was a ton of fun haha.

My spiritual thought this week is Matthew 25:40. It reads:

40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

This scripture is short and sweet. I love it. It's telling us that as we serve others, we really are serving our Master, Jesus Christ. Service gives us a huge opportunity to be more Christlike and to spread the message of the Gospel to those around us. I encourage you all to look for more ways to be of service to your fellow man and woman. Our brother, Jesus Christ, lives. He is our Lord and Savior. I know that as we strive to be like him, we will see changes in ourselves and the Lord will help us and bless us. I know this church is true. I love you all so much. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Thank you for all y'all do. I hope y'all have a wonderful week! Till next time!

Elder Houssian

Zone Pic! 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Week #28

Hey everybody! I hope this week was a great week for you all and I
hope everything has been going well for you and your families!

This week was a great week for us. Tuesday we had transfers and picked
up our 3rd missionary in our companionship, Elder DeMott. We then
scrambled to figure out how to fit 3 Elders in our one bedroom
apartment. Solution? Elder Moen is sleeping in his walk-in closet! His
mattress surprisingly fits so that's where he is now!

We had a great time with a friend of mine from my last area this week
as well. He took us to lunch and helped us get some things done and
things we needed since we now have a 3rd Elder, and it was great to
see him again.

On Saturday we had the wonderful privilege and opportunity to hear
from one of our beloved Apostles, President Russell M. Nelson. The
Spirit was very strong and I learned a lot from him. We took a picture
as a mission and then we each got to shake his hand. Just being in his
presence was a testament to me that he truly is an Apostle called of

My spiritual thought this week comes from the Doctrine and Covenants,
Chapter 9, verses 7-8. It reads.
"7 Behold, you have not understood; you have supposed that I would
give it unto you, when you took no thought save it was to ask me.

8 But, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your
mind; then you must ask me if it be right, and if it is right I will
cause that your bosom shall burn within you; therefore, you shall feel
that it is right."
These verses stuck out to me in my studies this week. We can ask God
for things all we want when we pray, but it is when we act in faith,
study diligently and seek further knowledge, that the Lord will bring
us answers to prayers in our minds and in our hearts. I know this to
be true Brothers and Sisters. We have a loving Father in Heaven who
does hear and answer our prayers. I know without a shadow of a doubt
that He does. As we show our love and faith in our Heavenly Father and
in our Savior Jesus Christ, we will receive help from on high and we
will be blessed. I know our Savior lives. He atoned for our sins and
made it possible to return to live in Heaven again someday and be with
our families for time and eternity. This Gospel is the true word of
God. It was brought forth to us in this last dispensation by the power
of God, through the Prophet Joseph Smith. Joseph Smith was and is a
prophet of God. The Book of Mormon is the word of God. As we study it
and ask sincerely of its truthfulness, the Spirit will touch our
hearts and minds and let us know that the Book of Mormon is true. I
say these things in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, amen.

I hope y'all have a fantastic week this week! It is so good to hear
from you! Until next week!

Elder Houssian

Monday, January 9, 2017

Week #26 &27

Hey y'all! I hope this week has been good to each of you. Happy New Year!! The transfer is done and it's crazy, I can't believe how fast this is going. It keeps speeding up and I don't know what to do haha. I got my transfer info, and I will be staying in my same area with Elder Moen, AND we will have a 3rd missionary serve with us, Elder DeMott. We're three-packing! I'm stoked for this transfer with Elders Moen and DeMott, they are both hard workers and fun to be around so it will be a lot of fun this transfer! I apologize for leaving y'all hanging last week, as most of you know I've been going through some health issues and last week I was focusing on handling that and seeking advice from my loved ones because we still don't know what is going on. So I apologize! BUT I have some good news to report. I wore a portable Event Monitor that monitors my heart rate for a week, and this past Wednesday turned it in and did a few more tests. I did a stress test and had to walk pretty fast on a treadmill (I guess I was training for an Olympic sport cause rumor has it that speed walking is a sport now haha) but it also showed me how out of shape I was. Then I had an ultrasound done on my heart, and that was it. I returned on that Friday to go over the results, and the doctor said that my heart was perfect, there was nothing wrong and said everything looked great and healthy for someone my age, so there we go! It's not my heart. But I'm still going through the same pains and difficulties, so the doctor is referring me to a lung doctor next week to see if they can find out what's going on. But I'm all good, I'm relieved it's not my heart, and now we are making progress! 

I hit my 6 month mark this past Friday and as tradition holds, burned a tie! It's crazy how fast this has gone for me. Even with my recent health issues, it still has been flying by.  I guess time really does fly when you're having fun.

I was able to return to my last area in North Las Vegas Saturday and attend the baptism of Jason, Bert, Julian, and Atheina, some awesome kiddos I was able to teach while up there last transfer. It was great to see them again. The Spirit was very strong and very present at this baptism and it was great to see these wonderful children of God enter the waters of baptism.

This week, my spiritual thought comes from 2 Corinthians 12. My dad sent me this scripture this past week as I have been going through my health trials. It is verses 7-10 and it reads:
7 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

This is Paul speaking. Paul asked the Lord 3 times to remove his physical weakness, and Lord would not. Paul was very strong, and was persistent in asking the Lord for help. Later in Corinthians, Paul bore his testimony as to why the Lord wouldn't take away his weakness. With that weakness, Paul was compelled to humble himself, and knew he had to fully rely 100% on the Lord and His grace. This scripture really meant something to me. As we go through the trials of life, we must FULLY rely on the Savior. As we do so, He will bless us with His strength, which His strength. I know this to be true Brothers and Sisters. As we turn to the Lord in our triumph and our infirmities, He will be with us and bless us with strength beyond what we are capable of alone. I know our Savior Jesus Christ lives. The gospel is restored on the earth today, and was done so through the Prophet Joseph Smith. The Book Of Mormon is the word of God. It goes hand in hand with the Bible, and all together brings us the fullness of the Gospel. I know families can and will be eternal, and I thank the Lord every day for blessing me with my beautiful family, a family who I will be privileged to be with forever. That is the greatest blessing I could ever ask for. I say these things in the name of our Beloved Savior, Jesus Christ, amen.

I love y'all so much! Thank you for all you do and for the example and light you are to me. I hope this week is wonderful and the Lord blesses you all with His hand. Until next week!

Elder Houssian

Pic with me and the kiddos (besides Bert, he's 15 haha)

Tie Burning!