Sunday, July 6, 2014

June 17th- June 30th 2014

JUNE 17, 2014
Yiiiipeeeeee!!!
I am overwhelmed with joy because of all the exciting news! First off, Happy Fathers Day Dad! I can't express how much I love and appreciate you! You have taught me what it takes to be on the Lord's errand. I've watched you closely for 19 years! You've been and still are a wonderful father and I couldn't ask for anything better. When I think of the concept of a Father I always get turned towards God. He is our Father in Heaven. Everything in existence had to come from somewhere or something. Everything derives from God. His love is perfect. I think of everything that you dad have sacrificed and done for my benefit. Then I can understand a little more of what my Father In Heaven has sacrificed and given me for my benefit, even His son Jesus Christ. Everytime I see you I catch a little glimpse of who my Father in Heaven is! How great is that?! I sure do love you dad and I hope you had a great Fathers Day! (expect something in the mail this week ;)
Kaylee is 18?!?! Whaaat?! It can't be! She's still a baby! haha I am so proud of who she has become is shut a short time period. Keep on moving forward sis! (2 nephi 31:20) The person you will become depends on where your eyes are fixed and each step you take to get there! I've got the best little sister! Not much time left, we are jam packed again on our P-Day haha but it's all for the work of salvation to move forward! Transfers are tomorrow and we will be getting 8 different missionaries and then the week after a new mission president! We can't miss a beat in our leadership positions. I have been trying to exercise more faith lately. Yes, every day on my mission I have gone out and worked hard, but going out everyday expecting miracles and success is another story. What I have learned by experience and observation- it is not the area or past which defines how successful you are on your mission. It is how much faith unto action you have. Now I go out everyday believing and expecting to find a family or someone elect to teach. But faith unto action doesn't do it alone. Faith unto power is required to see miracles and be an effective vessel of the Lord. Meaning I must sacrifice in order to fully do God's will. Obedience isn't enough. My Father in Heaven, my father here on Earth, my Savior, and so many more have sacrificed for me to be where I am today. I am sacrificing my whole self. There is a family here for me to find teach and baptize. I have to be my best to qualify for the Lord's trust in helping them gain salvation! There isn't anything in life that I have done that means more than my mission does to me. I love the Lord and I love being in his service! Nothing is more fulfilling :) Speaking of that, congrats to Abigail on being called to serve! Argentina! Ai Ai Ai! jaja me gusta!
I love you all and I hope you have a great week! Oh and I'm staying with Elder Livingston another transfer! he's awesome! Asta!:)
Elder Mackelprang

JUNE 23,2014
Eternal Life or Wipeout?
When thinking of the show Wipeout there are objects constantly trying to knock you off the path. One of the obstacles I remember is when the flat platform they stand on shoots up and becomes a vertical wall. I haven't been thinking about Wipeout but about these walls that come up in our lives that try to knock us down. When you seem to be surrounded by walls and have no where to go, what do you do?? Throughout our week we had exciting plans each day. Sadly, one after the other fell through and each day was the same. Moments like these really test your faith and put you in a situation to act. This is what it means to have a wall placed in front of you. There are 3 options when this occurs. 1. You simply give up, turn around, and just go home. 2. You turn and walk along the wall which is blocking you from where you want to go. The third option is what we must take. That is to 3. BREAK THROUGH THAT WALL! Everyday our appointments kept falling through and the people who we thought were going to become great investigators ended up dropping us. Fatigue and stress begin to come in and that is where options 1 and 2 begin to pop into your mind. Your trial of faith has started. There is slight great difference between enduring and prospering. Elder Livingston and I could have just endured by turning down the wall, while still working, but not in the direction we wanted/planned to. But the Lord wants us to do so much more. He wants us to prosper and thrive in life, not just to endure through it. We kept pushing to find people to teach and once we broke through that wall we finally found what we were looking for... an elect child of God. We taught this man and he came to church on Sunday. Yes we endured through our trial but there is so much more to it. We faithfully kept expecting something great to happen and we did everything we could to qualify for that miracle. This man told us after church that he wants to be baptized. He will be in July or August! The purpose of this life is for us to grow in faith and prepare to meet our Father in Heaven. He is going to allow walls to be put up in front of us. What are the walls in your life that nudge at your spirit and prevent you from doing what you know is expected of you? Whether it is living a commandment or magnifying your office and calling, the Lord will always give you the strength to do what he expects of you. Through faith in Jesus Christ and his Atonement we can knock down the walls in our lives. We can stay on the straight and narrow path without having to turn and go down any detours. I have a firm testimony in my savior Jesus Christ. He is perfect and knows the exactly what we need. He is the good shepherd. If we follow his lead we can overcome anything in our path. This gospel is the way to eternal life, which is the greatest of all gifts. I hope and pray that we can all make it together. It all comes down to the choice we make when that wall is put in front of you. Don't Wipeout! Continue in faith and never waver! I love you all!

P.S. Dad: The World Cup is one of my walls that I'm knocking down haha I am putting it on the altar and not thinking about it throughout the day! Enjoy it for the both of us! ;)

Elder Mackelprang :)

JUNE 30, 2014
Filling the Pitt with a couple Salisbury Steaks!
First off: THANKYOU FOR THE BIRTHDAY WISHES!!!! It was a great day!! No longer being a teenager, renewing my covenants felt even greater! Not much of a change but I am excited to be 20! How does that make you feel Dad? haha jk you can still beat me at an arm wrestling match... for now.
Saturday President and Sister Pitt flew back to their families in Utah after a very faithful 3 year service here in the WVCM. To "fill the Pitt" our new Mission President and his lovely wife arrived Saturday to continue this great work which we are called to do. President Salisbury is 52 and his wife is 49. They have already brought a force of excitement and love for the work! Tomorrow we havfe our MLC (Mission Leader Council) and we will get to know him and council about how we can improve and then how we can help the rest of the mission do the same! I am humbled and so grateful that I have the privilege to work with so many great leaders and missionaries on a regular basis. Christ without a doubt has organized His church. Everyone is kept accountable and if done right, the keys of the priesthood are welded together into a beautiful scene called the work of salvation. I am honored to be a full time part of this, and will be for the rest of my life as a member missionary!
This week was another slow week with many hardened hearts and closed off people. Thoughts of why people can be so wicked come in and if there are even any people out there that want to be better. Well, when these thoughts creep in I back hand Satan to the face and the spirit reconfirms everytime that there is someone looking for the truth here in the land of confusion/contention, called the Bible Belt. We found some amazing people this week! One woman our age who is very open to learning and following Christ. Another is a man who I constrain from calling "Big Black". He is about 450 lbs of pure charity and greatness! He came to church for the second time yesterday and loved it. At the end of our lesson he commented and said: "Now boys, know that I am not leaving my church.... with no reason. I am leaving my church because I know that there are modern day prophets and apostles and that this is the truth!"        PRAISE THE LORD!!!       If only everyone could see that it isn't about us converting them to our church for another number in our membership. He sees the big picture. This brings him closer to His savior and Father in Heaven. I can't explain how great it is to be a member of this church because we are literally a part of Christ's organized church. Not just any church that proclaims and talks about Christ. Christ only taught his one gospel and this is it. Eternal truths do not change. I challenge all of you to deepen your faith and knowledge of Christ's organization. Do you really understand how grand it is for us to have a living prophet and living apostles? It is life eternal to know God, and this is how we come to know the pure truth about who He is, by listening and hearkening to the words of His chosen servants. Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God. I am a witness of this church and of my Savior Jesus Christ. Come to know him more and strengthen yourself through him!

Have an explosive 4th of July!!! This time, lets light a "Wild Thing"! haha great memory right before I went to the MTC when that firework zipped past all of us and shattered the van window! :D
Freedom is not free. Nor is eternal life. Have a great week and be safe!
Remember that true freedom is being able to stand before God with a clear conscience and knowing that your life is in the direction of Righteousness. Do that which is pleasing to our Father :)

Love you all!
Elder Mackelprang