Monday, February 28, 2011

Things are looking UP!

Hola Padres!!!                                           28 Feb 2011  
Well how goes it back in the good ole town of Burbank? This week was a better week. It wasn’t the greatest week but it was definitely a better week. My spirits having been picking up with every little experience that just keeps me from going insane and keeping me on track. There was quite a few little experiences throughout this week. For one we had our DTM and meetings with President this week. It was pretty interesting. So I had my first interview with him since I first got to St. George. So I have some bad news.... I have a plane ticket for Wednesday. I will be back in the airport in Pasco at . So will you be there to pick me up??   (CHAD THOMAS!!  scream from the MOM!)

Okay I am just kidding, hopefully you didn’t die of a heart attack Mom! I am sorry, I couldn’t resist to say those things. (Almost!!  Quit it Chad!!)
Well my Spanish skills increase a little more every week. Some weeks they increase more then others, but nonetheless they are still increasing slowly but surely. I am beginning to be able to talk to people just one on one and understand most of what is going on. That is different compared to when I would be able just teach things about the Gospel. Diligence is definitely needed to help me learn this language fully.
One funny thing we did this week, was as a District we had a mustache growing contest. I have included pictures to show you me and my companion after we grew them out for a few days. Alright, we all know that it isn’t allowed to grow any form of facial hair. We bought the fake mustaches after we ate lunch at a Mexican Restaurant here. My facial hair isn’t blond anyways, so the prank wouldn’t have worked. But it was pretty funny to see people look at us weird when they saw missionaries driving in a car with some mustaches. That is probably the one thing I absolutely dislike about a mission, having to shave everyday! I didn’t like to shave before my mission, and I definitely don’t like to do it now when it has to be done everyday!  (Boys will be BOYS and so will missionaries!)
Well I had a pleasant surprise from Uncle Howard and Aunt Robin this week. They sent me a package full of goodies! I was like, " WOW, I wasn’t expecting this."
One of the Spiritual Experiences I had this week came through a lesson with Ricardo. That is where most of the crazy moments of my mission have come. He has been skipping lessons and things because he has been super busy with a ton of things. He also has been getting away from doing the things he knows he should, like reading and praying. So when we went there we had a really good lesson. Then at the end of the lesson he asked us to give him another blessing of comfort. I was shocked that he asked in the first place, but then even more surprised when he asked me to be the one who blessed him. This is where I had the crazy experience. This is where I learned truly about the power of the Priesthood that I possess. During the blessing, I felt the Spirit working through me. I know that the blessing I said and the things I promised Ricardo weren’t things that I was saying to him, but the things that the Lord wanted to say to him. I don’t even remember the things that I said, I felt that I completely was just directed by the Spirit the whole time. After it was finished, Ricardo just sat there for about 3 minutes and he finally stood up and just was like "Wow! I have never felt anything like that before." So he was able to receive a blessing, and I was able to learn the true power of the Priesthood for myself!
Well no one can tell me that it doesn’t snow in Southern Utah. That theory has been proven wrong about 5 times since I have been in Hurricane. Yesterday we woke up to snow on the ground, it melted by about 11, but we had snow flurries until about at night. The weather here is extremely weird, since today it is supposed to be in the 60s and sunny! So the weather has been bipolar lately.
Well I know about the money thing. It is something that I really need to learn and understand. The only thing is that I am thinking about buying another set of sheets to have with me. But I can just buy those with the Walmart Gift Card that you sent me, depending on how much is on it. But that is the only thing that I was really needing. I was thinking about buying another suit, but that can wait for a while.
Well that is a really cool thing about Sara being your waitress. (Darin and I went to dinner at Cousins and a close friend of Chad’s was our waitress.  She said, “I miss Chad!” and she told us she has been keeping up with Chad by reading his blog!) I am glad that people are reading my blog and learning about what is going on. Shout out to all those who read my blog! I guess to even those of you in Russia?! I don’t really know anyone in Russia but I guess the news about me is just spreading...  (We did a search and found that over 1000 people have read Chad’s blog and it even showed one hit originating from Russia.)
I do have a special assignment for you as my parents! I want you to write me a letter describing your conversion. I have never heard your stories and this is especially for Mom, since she is a convert, but it is also for Dad. Describe for me the experience you had that helped you learn these things for yourself. The catch is that is has to be handwritten, no emailing these things to me. HANDWRITTEN! I figured I leave assignments for the investigators; I should leave one to the parents as well! Well I am looking forward to another week and hoping that it is better than the last. Stay strong! I am praying for you!

Live it, Love it, Preach it!   Con amor de tu hijo,     ELDER D

Saturday, February 26, 2011

More LOWS than HIGHS at the moment!

THANK YOU to all who have said you have viewed Chad's blog and enjoy keeping up with all his activities.  He is feeling a little overwhelmed and would LOVE to receive a letter or email from YOU!!  Tough weeks are common on a mission.  He was fortunate to start out having some super successful weeks!  Thanks again to all who send their love and support!  We love you too! -- Mom and Dad Davis  :P

Hola Mis Padres!!!                       22 February 2011  
      Well this email isn’t going to be the greatest and most uplifting. This past week was probably the toughest week I have had since I have been on my mission. Everything was just super tough and things never went the right way for us. I guess my mission here in Utah isn’t a fairytale as a lot of people think. This definitely has been one of those trials of my faith. Everything is making me lose my patience or get me super frustrated. I keep working and going forth but it doesn’t help when you go to visit people who could really care less if you came over to visit them or not or when you are struggling to find common ground with a companion.
     Things just have gotten super super tough and I just sometimes don’t know what I have to do or why things happen like this to me. (It's not to HIM, but it feels like it is!) Investigators don’t want to do anything and don’t even have a desire to learn, they just have us over to be nice. This just makes me even more frustrated and makes me want to say things that I shouldn’t say to them. But I guess everyone has their free agency to choose what they want to do, my job is just to present the message to them and then they can choose after that.
     There was one thing that did help me out this week and that was a comment that Ricardo told me. He said, "When you have tough days and are feeling pretty down, it doesn’t matter that you have had a thousand doors slammed in your face, but always remember that you have changed my life!" So I definitely felt pretty good after he told me that. But I still had some bad days and pretty frustrating. My patience for people has definitely been slipping. It also didn’t help that it rained on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It just didn’t help me to have any more of a desire to go out and work through the down pouring rain.
     On Sunday, we did have the chance to help out for the "Baptism Preview" for all those kids that are around that age. It was pretty cool to help out for that. I also was able to talk about it all in Spanish. Even through all this frustration and everything, I have really been feeling that I have been getting some help through the gift of tongues. It has been helping a lot and I have been speaking it a lot more with (Elder) Lora, and also with all the rest of the members and investigators we have. I have also been able to study a little more and be able to have that come to me a little more fluently.
     We didn’t get to email yesterday because of the holiday celebrating all our dead Presidents. Because of that we also didn’t really do much yesterday. We just hung out at home for most of the day and enjoyed the time to relax.  I am super glad that you had the opportunity to get away and take a trip to the Oregon Coast. It is okay that I wasn’t there, it doesn’t even bother me actually. I am totally content with being here on a mission and I know that this is where I am meant to be right now. The only thing that I am a little jealous about is the Tillamook Ice Cream. That stuff is so good, and I am poor so I can’t buy any!
     Well that sure is a lot of changes that have been happening back home. So we are still the Pasco Stake, but just have a bunch of different people leading it now. I kind of had the thought in my mind when you said that the stakes were being split that Bishop Lott would be in the Presidency, well I guess it is President Lott now. 
     So a water main busted under my bathroom? Does that mean I will have a new bathroom when I come home? I like the sound of that. I leave for two years and you remodel my bathroom. Not too shabby of a thing to get in return. Well I am sorry that this email wasn’t very uplifting and glorious like the other ones, but with all things there is opposition and I am suddenly faced with that opposition right now.
     Well I love you a ton and hope you are doing great. I continue you to pray for you and hope that you are enjoying the fruits of the Gospel.

Live it, Love it, Preach it!       Your son,    Elder D

Thursday, February 17, 2011

TWO LETTERS! Feb 7 & Feb 14

This first letter/email was not “sent” as thought by Chad =- as well as all the emails from the elders in the area.  The computer system did not send them.  So we have two letters this week!  Glad to know nothing was wrong, except computers…

Hola Padres!!!                                                    
      Well the crazy weeks full of miracles have kind of worn off. This week was just average, but I guess it is just a downer compared to all the crazy things that had been happening here. The only thing that was crazy here was the schedule because of transfers. We had such random times to do things and it was just ridiculous.
I went to St. Geezy three times in three days, so we blew a lot of miles right off the bat for the month. On Monday I supported my tie addiction and that is a little why my account has gone down. I only have used like 40 maybe 60 bucks max, I guess I will have to try and be a little more careful with my money. I don’t understand where it all went; I guess little things add up.
On Tuesday night at 5, I went and picked up Elder Lora. The crazy thing was that I was back in a trio for a day because Elder Hernandez didn’t leave until Wednesday night. So it was pretty cool because Hernandez trained Lora, so it was nice to have him there to help break the ice. On Wednesday I felt super weird because we had to drop off Hernandez in St. Geezy at like 10 at night. It was super weird to be out of our house that late, let alone driving some place. Oh the crazy things that happen on a mission. It is so funny because some days at home I wouldn’t even leave the house until . The mission really does change people I guess.   I officially finished my profile. So you can try and look me up on there!
I should probably tell you a little about my new companion, huh?  Elder Lora is from the Dominican Republic, but moved to New Jersey about 2 years ago. He is a convert of about 3 years. He is pretty random, but cool. Some times he will just start busting out singing Spanish songs and dancing. Elder Hernandez told me that is just the way that Dominicans do things.  J So it’s pretty funny around our house sometimes. We seem to be bonding pretty well, but there are some things that we still have to patch up. The one benefit about this companion is that he is actually making me speaking Spanish. I have seen a great benefit from it. I am actually speaking in lessons and associating with the people. The only thing is that most of my vocabulary is still about Gospel things, nothing more. I really need to gain a vocabulary about common sense things and that will help a lot.
Yesterday was pretty cool. The Branch has been moved to a brand new building here. It was pretty crazy; I felt pretty guilty being in such a brand new church and using everything in there. I have found that recognizing what day is what is still extremely hard. Everyday seems the same to me, I just wake up, pray and go out and spread the Gospel. It is pretty hard to actually understand what day is what when almost everyday is exactly the same. It is a good thing.  I am glad for the opportunity to serve and to help people change their lives. The one reason why I talked about not knowing what day was what is because yesterday was the Super Bowl? I didn't even know until like when we were at a correlation meeting and someone said something about it. I was like what the heck!? This is like the first year that I haven’t watched it in about 5 years. 
It is still crazy to hear about all the changes back in the Ward. It will be pretty cool to see President Barber and all the new people back there. Well Pops, I say for your talk you just go by what the Spirit tells you! Since that is what your topic is. (Darin was giving a talk in church.) Well thank you for everything and especially your support, it means a lot to me!
Live it, Love it, Preach it!

Your Son from the Lord's Vineyard!    Elder D

Mis Queridos Padres!!!                                 February 14, 2011
       Well first off I want to apologize for the email not going through last week. I sent one I promise, but the server where we email must failed. None of the elders here had emails go through so it was something here. I am extremely sorry for the inconvenience.
I also want to say HAPPY ANNIVERSARY MOM AND DAD!!!!!  I had to say it, I didn’t forget either I just forgot to buy a card and send it. Hopefully this will make up for me not buying a card.
This week was full of steady but sure things here. Last Monday was a pretty eventful day. Hopefully I can catch you up on everything. The first thing, the Zone Leaders got in a wreck. So they had to get a new car. The funniest thing was that it happened right across the street from where we do emails. I included a picture just so you can experience the crash and the laughs that I had experienced.
After all our daily activities, we decided to go hike a mountain to these caves. It was a pretty gnarly workout to get up there. The hike wasn’t the only crazy part of going up there. Up on the mountain, there was this random ramp that is on the edge of a 25 foot gap. Included is the picture. My question is who is crazy enough to jump this 25 foot gap on a bike, and let alone carry this bike halfway up a mountain? I guess people in Utah truly are crazy. Another thing was we were over at the Spendlove's and Elder Lora was trying to fix a picture and he ended up breaking the glass of the frame. He felt so bad that the next day he went and bought another and gave it to them. The whole day he was just saying "I feel so bad, Elder!" It was pretty funny.
This week has been up and down, but we have discovered a new style to help spread the Gospel. We have taken a little advice from the Jehovah Witnesses. We go to the door and if no one answers we just leave a pamphlet there with our names and number. So whether they answer the door or not, they are going to get a message about the Restored Church.
My profile is finally posted on So go look me up!!!  The companionship is still growing. We are having to work out differences but that is normal when you  live with someone every second of the day. We just have a few different opinions on some things and we need to find some common ground in the middle. Elder Lora and I just haven’t quite clicked like I did with Elder Hernandez.
The time seems to go by faster every single week. It seems like I was just here emailing home yesterday. My mission will be gone in a blink of an eye. I did get the Valentine's package on Saturday. I really enjoyed it! I also enjoyed the Spanish card. My question is how did you pick it out? It was really good and wasn’t inappropriate. It was actually for a son and was very good.
Well I do have a package to send home, but I can wait and just send it later in the transfer, unless this guy really wants to come pick it up. Oh I also really enjoyed the story that you sent me. It really applies and I needed something like that to help boost me up. It is also tough to hear about the boys and their loss, but they just need to battle back. Keep me updated! Thanks!
Well the Stake is getting split? Do you have any idea what is in what yet?? Man I am coming home to a new ward, and probably a new stake as well! Oh the changes that happen while you are gone! Well I hope you have a good Valentine's Day! I love you a ton!

Live it, Love it, Preach it!

Your son laboring in the Lord's Vineyard!     Elder D