Monday, February 28, 2011

Moving on to.......Boise?


Well today Elder Marsh is moving on. He is at the airport getting ready to continue his journey to.....wait.....Boise Idaho!!!!

Yes, for some wonderful government, red tape, bureaucracy Elder Marsh and his district have to fly to Boise Idaho to go to the US Consulate to get his visa. Now, don't ask WHY he couldn't go to the Dallas consulate, because that would make more sense. Just except it and move on.

He is due to be in Mexico on March 2nd. Let's just wait and see!!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Jake is spreading the Word!

Hey, best family ever! The mission field is the BEST PLACE EVER! I absolutely love it here! Oh, suprise, email :) Anyways, we are baptizing for the next few weeks in a row! I sent a letter with pictures home the other day. This place is amazing. Flat. Brown. Tons of Hispanics. It is almost like I'm in Mexico already. I love being in the field. It is so much different. SPANISH is nothing like in the MTC. Here is way to fast, way to slangy. But I lean cool phrases like "que transas, carnal?" Which directly translates to, "whats flowin, my flesh?" :) fun stuff. I love teaching poeple. Some have hard hearts and refuse to believe. Others are humble and willing to do as the Lord asks. There are MIRACLES here. There are seen in this work. They are felt. Whether we are on a couch of a family we have been teaching, or kneeling on the pavement of a man's driveway we met 45 minutes ago, the Lord leads us to those who are ready. I've taught in houses, driveways, front porches, and hospitals. No matter where, no matter who, I have the privilege and opportunity to help others find Christ, and be closer to him myself. This is everything I wanted it to be. And I have 2 whole years to go! I couldn't be doing anything else in the world that would mean this much to me. P.S. I actually missed Raley's for a split second the other day. Being a missionary changes your perspective and makes you realized WHY you do what you do. I feel closer to my Savior, closer to the prophets current and past, and the seed of faith planted in my heart is turning into a tree. Roots deepening, strength expanding. It is so important to nurish that faith. I have met people who didn't plant faith, but anger, hate, and sorrow. Sure enough, those seeds grew by nourishment into trees, equally as rooted, and equally as strong. My dear family, every single day, each and every one of you, I ask you and exhort you to do something, ANYTHING, to nourish you seeds of faith every day. Read a chapter of scripture. Say an extra prayer or two. Do one nice thing for a loved one, or a stranger. Those seeds will be plants, then great big trees.
So the daily life here. We wake up and try to get some exercise. But it doesn't work because I'm still 2 or 3 pounds heavier than before my mission. Then we get dressed, eat, and start study at 8 am. We study as a companionship next, then language, then we are out the door by 10 or so. Days like today, we came to the library to email, because it was closed on monday. After this, we will go to the flea market where everyone needs a shower and they sell the junk laying around their house. But we find families to teach there (and AMAZING tacos from the roach coaches). Lunch is around 12:20, then we go to appointments to teach. We don't really tract because we have enough people to teach. We work until about 9 or 9:30, come home, plan out the next day, and then we find ourselves comfortable in our nice beds once again. My bed is a mattress. On the floor. But I love it! I have 2 companions who I talk about in my letter. Elder Arellano, and Elder Wagner. Sometimes we do stuff with the English Elders in our area. Oh, we are in Cleburne, TX. It's a smallish city. Hardly anyone has all their teeth. Some parts are very nice, some, not so much. But the Lord is here. And I try to love every person here. Stinky, toothless, or well off and nicely dressed. All are God's children, and I have the responsibility to testify to of the reality of this, the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. The fact that our church restored is very interesting and very vital to what we do. I encourage you to find out why. Anyways, time is about up, and it is about time to get back to work. I love you all so much. Write back to me soon! Keep doing what the Lord expects, cuz I want to be exalted with yall ;)

With love from Texas,
Elder Marsh

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Opppps.....Jake is in Ft. Worth! Who said Dallas?

Elder Marsh has landed in good 'ole Texas!


Dear Family,



We wanted you to know that your son has arrived safely here in Texas. We hope you enjoy the attached picture of your missionary, as well as knowing that he is in good hands. We know we will only have him for a short time as he waits for his Visa but we will take good care of him while he is here.



Thank you,

President Joseph M. Sagers

Texas Fort Worth Mission President

Sunday, February 13, 2011

No Visa. Hello Dallas!


Jakes visa did not arrive for him to get into Mexico. So no fear - tomorrow he go to the Texas Dallas/Ft. Worth Mission. His stay there should be brief. He will still serve the people of Mexico as soon as his visa arrives. He is excited to go to Texas as long as he leaves the MTC. The MTC is a wonderful place, but when it is your time to leave you just want to get in the field. He told his mother that his Spanish is coming along well.

So if you would live to write him you can go to DearElder.com and select the Texas Dallas/Ft. Worth Mission. As soon as we know when he leaves from there to Mexico we will share that here.

Keep Jake in your prayers and also pray for the people whom he will be teaching. I know he already has such a love for them.

-Shelley

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Let's pray that his Visa comes on time!

Hello Mother!
So first matter of business, my estimated departure date is the 14th. The key word is estimated. We are supposed to find out tomorrow if we are going or staying. So If you have stuff to send, still send it here. If my VISA is following the trend as the rest of the Elder's going to Mexico, I am either going to stay here for a few more weeks, or I wil be reassigned. We are supposed to find out this week.


Anyways! Something cool happened this week. We have another elder join AND leave us in a matter of 4 days. Elder Mecham was reassigned to St. George after 11 weeks in the MTC. He was out in the field for 3 until the MTC called him back because they had his visa! Only they found out when he got here they didn't actually have it. A different Elder Mecham I guess. So he stayed with us for a few days and found out that Mexico wasn't going to let him in because he was born in Japan as a US citizen or something weird like that. So he flew out this morning to Texas to serve there instead. He said that an Apostlt picked his reassigment to Texas which made him feel better. I see Joe all over ther place! He is in a different zone but he is on the same schedule and stuff. My little tiny teacher from Equador is heading there for a week to see her sister get sealed, so we wont see her this week. And if we leave on Monday as estimated, we wont see her at all! So we had a group picture of all of that we gave to her with some thoughts we wrote on the back. Then we sang Para Siempre Dios Este Con Vos. Which is God Be With You til We Meet Again. It was pretty teary. But it will be a fond memory now. I'M SO EXCITED TO LEAVE! Not that I don't like the MTC, but it isn't like the field. Now that I'm so close to leaving, I'm getting pumped up. I feel pretty ready. Prepared. The language is much more comfortable than when I first got here. Gospel stuff is easy in Spanish. It's just casual conversation that I need to learn. But I'm not worried about that. I was so happy to get the package from you! Everyone has been eating all the sweets. And I LOVED the ties! Definitely not going to trade those ones. Especially not the paisly. But it is coveted amoung the other Elder's who come by now and then. This entire week, I have had an awful cold :( a sore throat and a cough that keeps the whole room awake at night. Plus the most solid chest congestion. I was told not to go to the temple today, so I feel pretty bummed about that. But I guess I'm getting better! I lasted 8 weeks and 3 sick companions before it came my time. I can't stop thinking about the field! It's so close. I cam't wait for when it comes time to get on that plane. I'm so glad to be a missionary. I've been working my whole life so far to have a testimony and be a good boy so I can be here. And now I am. But I almost feel like I haven't completely started. It is so amazing Father has entrusted me with such a huge responsability. To help save the souls of His children. So something I have been learning lately: language really hurts relationships and our ability to feel the Spirit. Especially rudeness and sarcasm. I have been working on these two things a LOT because they just destroy. As a family, I give you an assignment! Try not to be sarcastic and say mean things. ESPECIALLY if you are 'just joking.' Joke about fun, nice things :) I love my family so much! Thank you for the love and support and tri-weekly mail. (That was for claud :)) Oh, and thank you for the awesome pictures! But, where was dad? :) Until next week! Well, hopefully I'll be on a plane next week, but we will see! And I'll let you know where I will be. Love you! And so does Jesus.
Elder Marsh

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Finally some pics!





Well here it is! The latest abnd greatest from Elder Marsh! The MTC is just amazing. 7 weeks already! Things have flown by so quickly. I meant to write to the Cross' before wednesday, but it is too late now! BUT, I get to be one of the curbside host Elders tomorrow! So there is a big chance I get to see him! I'll definitely be looking for him. He might even be in my class build of in the same dorm. There are rooms opening up because a few districts ahead of us have left already. I am so excited to get out there! Right now, I'm with my TWO companions in one of the rooms in the main building. I'm typing, Elder Hansen is writing, and Elder Anderson (my new comp) is being all baller on the piano. It is the closest thing to music we can listen to! I guess that rule is to keep things quiet and reverent in the dorms. You wouldn't think it, (at least I didn't) but a lot of Elder's arent that smart. I can only imagine how loud they turned up their MoTab and quickly put an end to any music being allowed. ANYWAYS! My new companion! Elder Riley Anderson. Loves soccer. And, of course, wants to marry Cass. He is way awesome. Lives over in Lehi. I like him a lot. He doesn't really like teaching though because he thinks the role plays are silly. Oh, ps, how much money is on my account? I have been buying some stuff. Like an MTC shirt for you! and I ordered one for Dad as well. XXL with a Mexico flag. Oh so get this! One of the Elder's in the district who just left is from Galt! I plan on keeping up with him. Also, do you know Ryan Busch? He is here too. He is in EG stake though. I joust thought it was cool to meet/know someone from my home! So in class, one of our teachers, Hermano McCleve, challenged us to sacrifices. So that we can see what it's like to investigators in the future. My challenge was I had to run 2 stupid miles every day at gym. Mom, I do NOT see how you go and willingly do all that running! Sure it feels good after, but I'm glad that challenge is over. But I did really enjoy the idea of the activity. I did't like running for a few days. Imagine how hard it would be to kick a habit of smoking or drinking coffee?? I love this MTC. I feel so blessed here. I have so many resources to tap into and get a huge dose of the Spirit every day. Like yesterday, I listened to President Uchtdorf's "Pride and the Priesthood" in Spanish. It was way cool! I'm starting to love my scriptures in spanish. I think zone conferences in the field might be tough, because they will probably be in Spanish! Oh well, the Lord has blessed me SO much with this language. I prayed in sacrament meeting the other day and I couldn't believe how fluid and quickly the words came to me. I do love this language. I can't wait to be a boss with it like Dad! Speaking of whom, I SO glad he has steady work now! Being here in this isolated bubble that is the MTC kind of makes me forget the outside world and the problems out there. But I'm glad my family is blessed. Oh btw, sweatshirts are about $40 before the 40% discount each. So let me know how many and what sizes and I'll send some home. I'm still taking pictures to send home, so there will be more in a few more weeks! Tell me what is new with everyone! I didn't get any letters from you all yet, so I'll be looking. How is my dog? And my sisters? I'm learing so much here. A lot of what I did in my premortal(mission) life that I really DON"T want to go back to, and tons of things that are going to help me with my family in the future. I also think about my investigators a lot. Just think, in a few short weeks, I'll be sitting in Alberto's house with his wife and small children. Speaking of that, I was teaching a lesson the other night to FIVE Elder's! I haven't role played with nearly that many before. Anyways, the Spirit was SO strong. 2 of them were the sons of the family. I asked what he likes to do outside and he said play in the river with turtles. So I asked when he comes home from the river all dirty if dad lets him come in before bathing. HE said no, and I compared this to baptism. Our Father wont let us come in to His house if we are dirty with sin. That's why baptism is SO important! And I have been baptized. And I baptized my baby sister. Father's plan is so perfect, and so full of love. I'm grateful every day to be a member, and to have the SAME calling as the Apostles! But I must go now. Laundry to do! I love you all SO much! And so does our Savior.
Love, Elder Marsh