Monday, May 26, 2014

Die Liebe, die man in den Schriften findet!....Week 8 in Wiener Neustadt

     Missionary work is the best. Hands down the funnest job anyone could ever have. Hard to even call it a job. I don't think jobs are supposed to be this fun. More like the best Opportunity ever. Yeah, that sounds better. 

     I think last week I wrote a lot about Miracles. Well its like the same this week. But more so the fruits of these Miracles. So we were able to teach a solid 6 lessons this week! The most I've ever taught in a week by the way. Two of them were to 2 people who are now new investigators. And 1 is the coolest! OK I will talk about him soon. 

     I felt this week that as a companionship we really had the spirit with us. In everything that we did we were going with the spirit! It was just good! We worked well this week. 

     OK well I really can't find a pattern to this. Like the writing isn't flowing as it sometimes does. So I'll just write about a way cool story. So the name is Mario. I don't like using names but this time I will. So 2 Sundays ago he was brought to church by a friend who is a recent convert. He really seemed to enjoy it here. We set up a lesson on Thursday and then taught him. We started out the lesson pretty bad I'd say. We didn't have a good flow. We were a little shaky but then we got on track. We even committed him to baptism at the end and he said yes. We call it a soft commitment cuz we don't have a date to it. Well the lesson was great and the spirit really testified to all of us. So yesterday in church he came again. After we were talking and he asked a lot about baptism and what the process to that is, like how long it takes before someone can be baptised or what someone needs to do before. So we talked about that and we have another lesson Thursday and will discuss that further, hopefully we will set a date for him! And he is coming to the baptism here on Saturday too! It'll be awesome for him. 

     So we are way excited for that! And then of course the baptism on Saturday! Gonna be awesome. We had a great few lessons this week with him and he definitely got his confirmation that this is the way to go. We had an awesome experience where the Spirit testified deeply to him that he is doing what's right. He is so ready for Saturday! We almost got everything ready. Its gonna be great! Super excited for that. 

     Well what else. We did a lot of service this week too. I'm getting a pretty good tan! Too much sun here. It's like awful! I've lost almost 10 pounds in these last 2 weeks just from eating a little less for meals and doing a little exercise. The sweating while walking just makes us lose weight lol. Its not bad. I weigh less now than I did when I came out on my Mission. Not bad not bad! hahaha

     I'm still reading in German in the Book of Mormon. I'm in Mosiah 28 now. I read 27 this morning. WOW! Read that chapter with the purpose for studying repentance and your mind will be blown from what you learn. And when you are done, read verse 30 of chapter 26 and then you will automatically be so much more thankful for the Atonement of Christ! Life is the best! We have so many blessings and so much goodness in our lives! So many blessings. So much love!

Life really is great! I love it so much! The work goes forward! Always! haha thanks for the love! I love it! 

Elder Rodgers <3

Lol a little shirt thing I made. My head and the arms belong to 2 other people. 
The bigger one is a girl.. that's why there are bracelets lol. 

Selfies lederhosen! 

Selfies lederhosen! 

And now lederhosen...

Posing lederhosen...

Ok they are so comfy. legit...

Posing lederhosen...

Monday, May 19, 2014

Es gibt so viele Wunder!.....Week 7 in Wiener Neustadt

     Hello family, friends, acquaintances and anyone else who may be reading. I want you to know one simple truth... und zwar... Miracles happen daily. 

     Yes that is true. I have seen it! It's like a test. Count the miracles you find in a day! I've learned that when I try to do that, I am blessed with more. They are never ending. For example.....We were on a train like 4 hours ago. We were sitting there for about 15 minutes waiting for the train to go and just talking to each other. There was a girl sitting across and back a row. So only I could see her, but just barely. I noticed through the reflection of the window that she was looking at us quite often. Well about a minute later she came and sat down right across from us and introduced herself and asked if we were 'The Mormons'. We of course said yes! Well she said she had been looking into new religions and wasn't quite satisfied with hers at the moment. She liked what she had seen about us and so she wanted to know more. She gladly accepted a Book of Mormon and we will be seeing her at church on Sunday and hopefully through this week too. Ah man! She is too cool! Miracles, let me tell you. 

     This week seemed to go by quite slow in comparison to other weeks. We had some great member appointments this week and we saw even more miracles through the members. Which I will gladly explain right now. So Sunday at church we start with Priesthood, go to Sunday School then Sacrament meeting to finish. Well after priesthood we as missionaries got to the Aufbau Class, like an investigator class or where the principals of the gospel get taught. Well a new convert of about a year brought a friend to church! He Introduced him to us and now we will be meeting with him this week on Thursday! It was the coolest!! He is open to learning and trying new things. We feel very strongly about him. All because a member opened her mouth and invited a friend to church. Simple. But a miracle! 

          Members are awesome! 

     So this next week should be awesome! Our bishop has a friend who used to be an investigator who now wants to be baptized too. Hopefully in this next week we will be able to teach some more awesome people and get some solid new investigators. I am super excited for them! Its so cool! 

     On Saturday night we were at the church helping with a stake primary activity. There was a stake priesthood meeting going on at the same time so all the kids 8-12 were with us. We helped with a missionary workshop thing. There were a ton of different stations and we had to help the kids do different missionary things. I was in charge of the Morning Sport station. So we did that with the kids. It was super fun. Missions are the best! Kids understand that too! Ah we had a great time with that! I am so happy! haha it was a blast!

          Life is simply good. I am simply happy. I love it! 

     Oh and 1 more thing. Thursday and Friday it rained like nobodies business! Ha and there was strong wind too. We were outside and in the first 10 mins we were dripping water down our legs and everywhere. Umbrellas being flipped out and just a bunch of laughs. We heard this saying... Do The Hard Thing... in a conference here once. Well I can sure say we did the hard thing. We could of stayed home but we visited Less Actives and Potentials. Ha that was a builder for me and I loved it! haha

P.S...The baptism for Manuel has been moved. Its now on the 31st of May! He is awesome! Ha, 3 weeks earlier! OK that's all!

     The mission is the best! I love it so much! Thanks for the Love! I love you all! Have an awesome love filled week!

Elder Rodgers :)

Ok. Touch screen map! Elders are awestruck from it! haha

Not the best pic, but thats some of the Mall I went to

Pretty Clouds!

The many faces of me.... Duck lips with chips at dinner! 

Me with ham :)   1. Stretching

Me with ham :)    2. Stretching

Me with ham :)

Playing hide and seek :).... with ham

ok the real thing with the ham is that there's a game the sister told us about called 'Ham Slap'. So you hide and then hit people in the face with ham. its awesome. so the other elders slept over the other night so we got em so good! that's why... I have so much ham lol

 Pretty Mountain with snow!!!

in Puchberg am Schneeberg

in Puchberg am Schneeberg

in Puchberg am Schneeberg

Monday, May 12, 2014

Alles Liebe zum Muttertag!....Week 6 in Wiener Neustadt

     Well I am not too sure how it happened but women seemed to be a big part of the week. Everything I read or saw, it was about women. In a good way of course! 

                           Happy Mothers Day Mom! You are the best <3 

     OK we were at a meeting on Tuesday and Elder Gibbons who is so full of wisdom and awesomeness and who finished his mission Thursday said.....     "This is the point in our lives where we realize our parents were right"

     How awesome is that? And not to mention how true that is! I've totally seen how everything I was taught and all the lessons I learned from my parents... They were right! ha Good job Mom and Dad! You were right. Turns out they were right.. I wish I would have done everything they asked or said to to. I would have had a much bigger advantage now. 

     So then I thought about it. Does that likely mean that our Heavenly Father will be right in the end too? I'm willing to bet Yes! So that reinstated the desire in me to follow every commandment and obey with exactness in everything. I may not agree with something or understand why... but in the end.... He will be right. So it would be wise for me to follow eh? Haha life lesson learned! We will get to the end of our lives, die, then realize that our Heavenly father was right. Hmmm. Think about that one eh. So cool! OBEDIENCE!!!

     Lol OK, then I was reading a conference talk from forever ago. It said...   "When you educate a man you educate an individual. When you educate a woman you educate a whole family." Like say whaaaaa? Lol the Apostle has spoken! That made me appreciate my mom more! Thanks mom! (I still love you too dad)!!

     OK.... Well this week was great. We have a baptismal date now! June 21st for Manuel! He is a boss! We are all way excited for that. It's gonna be awesome :) 

     Well let me see. I also learned a great lesson about service. I love service! It may be a little painful being bent over digging in a huge garden for 4 hours but oh man when you come to the end and see the fruits of your labours and see how much you have helped someone else, it just makes me smile! I have learned to love service :) More.. lol

     Well life is fabulous. I love Austria. I love my family. I love my friends. I love you! Life is worth it! Just keep smiling. In the end.. you'll realize why. Have an awesome time! And for all my family and friends going to Belly River... Have the best time ever! Say hi for me!

Love as always,
Elder Rodgers

Elder Gibbons. A boss!

Our Wiener Neustadt group!

Saying bye to Sister Garrett! See all of us through the windows and reflections ... :) 
and a creepy dude in the back left...

Typical Selfe!

Puchberg am Schneeberg... pretty place!

Playing MR. X  it's a fun game!

Palatschinke  Not bad eh?

Monday, May 5, 2014

Man braucht die Segnungen des Evangeliums!.....Week 5 in Wiener Neustadt

(This week is transfers but Tanner and his companion will stay. It was only a five week transfer this time)     

     Well I remember to last week. Not my best week. Not my best email. I looked at why. I think it was because I had my focus on the wrong things that week. I wasn't totally focused on the service which I would render to the Lord. So this week I realized that and tried to change my focus and boy did it make a great difference. 

     I was able to realize in many different circumstances this week how much the Gospel blesses the lives of people. The blessings promised to us when we live the Gospel are absolutely needed for someone to have hope and joy in this life. The blessings that one receives from living the Gospel are necessary for happiness. I saw that this week in many different ways. Each time I think on this I think back to the scripture in Mosiah 2:41 where it talks about the 'Blessed and happy state of those who keep the Commandments of God, for they are blessed in all things both Spiritually and Temporally' 

     As a missionary I've come to see that principle here is obedience. We are blessed when we obey. D&C 130: 20-21 teaches us that... 'When we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated'. We cant receive blessings from something unless we are obedient to that Law. If I obey the Word of Wisdom.. I will be blessed from that. But it depends on how much I choose to obey that. If I don't, I wont receive the blessings from that. 

     I really saw how much strength the blessings from Heavenly Father give people this week. In any hard situation we face in life, the promised blessings of the Gospel will be our strength. When someone realizes that life without the blessings of the Gospel is harder than life with the Gospel, it will simply allow us to instil a deeper desire in ourselves to be true to our covenants and live the Gospel more fully because we will see how much we are blessed wand supported when we choose to be obedient. 

     Well that was my life lesson of the week. Really made me think of how obedient I am. If im not seeing the promised blessings of missionary work, maybe I need to evaluate my obedience. It works. And the blessings flow. 

     On Monday we had the coolest finding day! Every missionary in Austria came together in Vienna for a finding day. I was working with Elder Sumison for the afternoon. We went out contacting for 2.5 hours and were able to see how the Book of Mormon helps people! We were talking to this one person. I wanted to share 2 Nephi 25:26 with him and so I opened the Book after talking about it a little, this guy stopped me as I was flipping pages and opened up to a random page and pointed and said to read from there. I started reading about how miracles have never ceased among the children of men and that through Christ miracles still happen. In the end this guy never took the book but I know that this little section of scripture was what he needed to hear. Its amazing how the Book of Mormon can be used in missionary work. Well me and Elder Sumison had a great time, found some cool people in the pouring rain and a lot of laughs! 

     So then Tuesday we came back to Vienna for Mission Tour. So this is where we have a General Authority come and speak to us. Elder Dyches from the 70, his wife, President and Sister Miles and our Stake President were all there and addressed us. Ah it was wonderful! I was so uplifted and learned so much. A great way to allow me to look forward into my future and see what I want to become and how I can do that. The Book of Mormon is our greatest tool and I'm committing myself to use it more in the work! 

Well Wednesday we were back to our areas and we took a train up to this place called Gr├╝nbach am Schneeberg. We had some potentials to go by on. While we were walking a guy pulled over gave us his address and said to come by next week. He knew we were from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints and said he wanted to hear from us. Then he drove back the same way he came from. Like are you serious? That only happens on Missions...

     We had a ward activity Thursday. I got a lot of sun! But I have a great skin lotion and so I was able to retain my tan and not peel! YES! A lot of sun and we did a mini hike. Lots of members came. It was a really good time. 

     The rest of week went on. A few fall out lessons, a few great lessons! A few awesome people found. A few fantastic lessons learned. Songs sung. Ideas shared. It was a great week. I learned lots and was really built up this week. I'm excited to move forward! There's a lot more in store! Its gonna be a great week :)

Love you all back home! Thanks :)

Elder Rodgers <3

My Elder Graver! And Elder Martinez from the MTC

Sister Henry (she has the best smile)

Elder Graver again :)

Mountains and Hills

Selfie through the woods!

A Town

Another Town

Another Town
Me and Elder Smith on the ward activity 

Me and Elder Smith on the ward activity