Tuesday, September 3, 2013

This just in... from The Office

September 2, 2013

So... yeah. This weeks title is obvious. Moving on!
This past week has been really... fast. The Office keeps us really busy all week long. I don't really have too much time to really think about what's happening around me. I don't even know what to talk about really, but we'll see how this goes!

So far, in the Office they've been keeping me really busy. I'm in charge of the mail every day, I get to sort everything, print labels for them, and send 'em on! Also, I have been in charge of going through the missionaries phone records, lookin' for disobedience and such. That's really boring! I look through thousands of pages trying to look for discrepancies... it's really boring actually. Also, I'm in charge of the supplies that go to all the missionaries in the Mission. So the Zone Leaders will call or text me with the numbers of supply needs, and I'll package it up for when they come to the Office. It keeps things interesting.

Elder Cannon, my comp. is really cool. He's from Orange County California. And I suppose to tell you a little bit about him, he started his mission in Honduras, spent about 20 months there, and now he's here because of a parasite he picked up there, and now he needs some doctor attention here in America. Hes' real cool though, we get along really well. He plays the ukelele a lot, and makes up songs. We have a bunch of fun with it though!

Elder Egan is... he's a bit tougher to deal with. I love the guy, but his personality and mine don't really mesh well. But he's a good Elder, And I love him for sure. He's from Idaho Falls, and he LOVES Idaho. Good guy :)

But I think that about catches all of you up!
Oh! Also... no news about my knees yet. The medical information is in SLC with Missionary Medical, and they're still looking it over. I haven't heard anything yet from them, but once I do I suppose I'll know what to do concerning surgery or Physical Therapy or... whatever. I have no idea what's going on. But I'm moving on and doing my best!

Last bit of information, an investigator that we're working with, Kevin Pizarro, is on baptismal date for the 21st of this month! I'm really excited for him, and we're working hard to keep moving forward! Kevin is cool, his GF is a member, and their whole family is fellowshipping him, he's coming to church all the time, and going to the activities, this kid is SOLID! He'll be a member of the true church in no time!

Well everyone, that should do it. I sure love you all!
This church is true, I know that without a doubt, and I challenge each of you, this particular week to bear sincere testimony of the truthfulness of this church. That's your assignment this week. That's it. And if you come back with, "Oh, I was too busy." I'll call you out on it. You've got 7 days, I know that you can do it! Put your faith in God, and in His Son, Jesus Christ. And I know that you can do it. 

Love,
Elder DeFreese 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Holy Moses!

August 26, 2013
Hey everyone! I've used this subject line quite a bit, but I think it's my favorite. I may just switch to using that one every week, who knows!
First things first, TRANSFERS! I have been transferred to Wichita, Kansas. I'm an office Elder, and I am a part of a tripanionship, trio, tripod, whatever you want to call it. 

I don't have a whole lot of time so I'll try and give you the good stuff and skip the details that don't matter. K?
K.
So before transfers, we met with the Johnson family, KC is real less active, and his wife, Chelsea, is not a member. We talked with them and they knew that transfers was coming up soon, so they asked what was happening. Well, it turns out that both myself and Elder Heppler were being transferred! They were SUPER bummed, because Chelsea had decided that she wanted to take the lessons and be baptized a member of the church! BUMMER! They stated that we were the reason that they had thought so hard about it, and prayed about it. So that kinda hit me in the heart real bad. But we taught them the first lesson, and then had to get outta there. Hard to do, but it happened.

Transfer day, we arrived in Dodge city at 10 in the morning, and we didn't get to Wichita until around 11 P.M. or so. Allergies hit me WAY hard, and they still are. Those wheat fields and all that crap in the air is getting to me! 

So now I'm an office Elder, I am officially in charge of all of the incoming and outgoing mail, and I am in charge of the supplies for missionaries, as well as for the office.
I am thoroughly enjoying this work, it's very much different, and it'll take some getting used to. But honestly, right now, I have no time left on the computer. I wish I could get a bit of an extension or something on my time, but I gotta go and get to my p-day activities!

My companions are awesome, Elder Egan and Elder Cannon, Elder Cannon actually came to this mission from serving in the Honduras mission. That's a story and a half. But I gotta run.
WRITE ME!! I'm watching all the mail, so I'll know! >:( 

Also, keep up on those challenges that I've extended to you, eh?
Love you all!
Elder DeFreese

Monday, August 19, 2013

Goin' to Wichita!

August 19, 2013
Hello all! My subject line should tell you what's happening. But I'll backtrack a little bit to the doctors appointment on Thursday just to let you know what led up to this event.
The doctor looked at my results, asked me some questions and then basically told me that he thinks it might be a patellar tracking disorder. He didn't sound confident that it was the problem. He went on to say that I can either do Physical Therapy to help strengthen the muscles around the knee. Or I can do surgery so that he can get inside and see what the damage really is, and fix it. So I called President Bell and talked to him about it, and he wasn't happy at all with how confident the doctor sounded and everything, so he told me that he was going to bring me over to Wichita, so that I could get a second opinion, and hopefully find out for sure what the problem is. So that's what's going on with my knee and everything. 

So, going to Wichita, I'm going to be serving as an Office Elder, from around 10 to 5 every day, and then go out and work. I'll have full time car, and be able to work in our area until the regular time to turn in. I'm excited but also a little apprehensive about it, I'll be in a tripanionship again, if you all remember the last time. We had a lot of fun for sure, but teaching situations were difficult. But I'm sure that we'll make it work! 

This past week has still been difficult for me, staying inside a lot, not knowing what's going on. BUT! I'm trying really hard to be more upbeat and positive about what's going on, I know that the Lord has a plan for me, it's just a bit harder for me to accept that and move forward with faith. I'm sure trying though! When we went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders this week, I had a fantastic experience with Elder Allen, he gave me a lot of good advice, and he shared some personal things with me that I will treasure forever. Him and I have gone through some very similar trials, and he has helped me immensely in the time that I have been here. 

I'm sorry that this week is going to be a short e-mail, but I hope that you'll all forgive me. I promise to get you a bigger e-mail this next week. Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers on my behalf, I know that it is because of you, that I feel as good as I do right now.

Love,
Elder DeFreese
P.S. I'm finally moving EAST on Transfer day!!!! Hahahahaha, good stuff! :)
 
1. The last District Meeting! 
2. Elder Heppler and myself
3. Elder Allen (my Zone Leader) and myself after Exchanges
 


 

Monday, August 12, 2013

And it came to pass...

August 12, 2013

This subject line is probably the most self explanatory of them all. It's scripturally based. And if any of you didn't know that then... I suppose you're still a son/daughter of God, but you should study your scriptures more. K? Seeing how it's a commandment and everything... anyways.
This past week has been very tiring, frustrating, and rewarding. In that order.
So let's go in order shall we?!
Tiring: This past week I have had several Physical Therapy appointments to strengthen the muscles around my knees. Each appointment lasts between an 1 hour, and 1 1/2 hours. In that time we do a ton of different exercises that push me to my limits, until finally he says, "alright that's it!" After these appointments, I am so sore that I literally can't go out afterwards. The day after, when the soreness really hits, we have been getting out and working just a little bit more each day. It's been really hard. It's also tiring because, since we've been stuck inside for a while, we have done a LOT of organizing, LOTS of cleaning, and we have even organized/cleaned the area books of the other missionaries in our ward. Super tiring because it's busy work. But it is work, and I am grateful that we were able to get it done, because it was sorely needed. And now we're really tired of doing those things, but we had a bunch of fun too! 

Frustrating: This past week was frustrating for me mainly because of the whole knee situation. I got a call from the doctors office Friday morning. The test results had came back from the MRI, and apparently they couldn't see any abnormalities at all. Nothing wrong. No reason at all for my pain. So this has put me in a complete tailspin, to be quite frank. I have no idea what's going on now, whether it's all in my head, or the tests are just wrong, whatever. Don't know. It's very frustrating. Another reason why this week was frustrating, is that one of our investigators, Kim, does not want to be baptized. We have explained to her why we need to be baptized, and why it needs to be done by the proper authority, and all of these things, that should have helped her. We felt the spirit strongly when teaching her, and yet she still refuses to accept the truth. This is the most frustrating thing that has happened this week, it's very sad when you know you have done all you can, and yet the person you are trying to help, won't accept it. 

However, her boyfriend, Jesus, is very willing and very open to the church, he has accepted Baptism, not a set date yet, but he knows that he needs to be Baptized. He is doing very well reading his scriptures, and doing what he can to come closer to Christ, hopefully as this goes on he can help Kim to see the truthfulness of it as well.

Rewarding: This past week was rewarding because of Zone Conference! We went down to Dodge City, where 2 Zones met, and we had a great conference, and learned a lot about working with members, and teaching them. It was awesome! Also, after Zone Conference, I went on exchanges with some of the members in the District, Elders Arend and Birch. I got to work with Elder Arend here in Garden City, while Elder Heppler went with Elder Birch to Scott City. Exchanges went great, and I learned a lot from Elder Arend, he's an awesome missionary, and he'll make a great Leader in the mission sometime very soon, I'm sure.

Anyways, I think that about sums up the week! 
Hope to hear from all of you soon, and don't forget the challenges!
Invite someone to church this week, the Lord will help!
Bear Testimony! It helps yours grow just as well as others!

And read your scriptures OK? 
And... make some brownies. :)
Love you all!
Elder DeFreese

Monday, August 5, 2013

Colorado!

Hey everyone! This title will be explained in the coming paragraph. Prepare yourself...
So this past week, I had the wonderful opportunity to go out with another missionary to his area in Lamar, Colorado! So now, on my mission, I have had the chance to go to 3 different states! SWEET!!!!!!!!! I was unable to get any pictures, we were on a very tight schedule, but it was really cool.
Also, this past week I went to the doctor! So... what happened Elder DeFreese? Well, I'll tell you. Through SONG!!!!!! 
Ha, just kidding. Why would I make up a song about that? Everyone who knows me, knows that I don't really do anything musical.

Anyways! Now that I've stalled for a little bit, I'll tell you. I went to the doctors at around 7:50 A.M. and I did a couple of tests, and the doctor told me that because I was so young, and had been having these problems for a long time, he was going to forgo the usual, slower treatment, and be aggressive with it. So he got me an MRI scheduled immediately, which I went to right way. After the MRI, I went and got lunch, and then had to go right back to the doctors. We did a bunch more tests, and talked more, and as of right now, the doctor told me that I can either do physical therapy, or surgery. Recovery time for surgery would be anywhere from 4-7 months. They also had me get some knee braces to help with my stability and everything, and when I get those I can get out and work a little bit. However, they will not get rid of the need for either physical therapy or surgery. There is no official diagnosis of what's wrong with my knee, that will come in a week or two. So that's the update there, any questions? No? That's strange...

Anyways, I just want all of you to know that I love you. I want you to know, that I know that I am here for a reason. I don't know why, but I do know that the Lord has a plan for me. I know that when I put my faith, and trust in Him, I can accomplish anything. So please, while I'm out of missionary work for a little while, please do your part and do some missionary work of your own. I hope and pray that you do.

Love,
Elder DeFreese
P.S. Anyone wanna give me some reading material while I'm out of work?! We've done so much cleaning, and organizing, and calling people that we may just start to watch paint dry for a "fun activity" just saying.  :)
 
1. Stratego!
 

Monday, July 29, 2013

So...

July 29, 2013

This subject line is more because of last weeks general e-mail. I didn't get a whole lot of responses concerning Home Teaching. So I'm assuming that you ALL used your time wisely and got out there and got it done. Thanks :)
Anyways, I'm sure some of you are wondering and MAYBE even worried about my knees and everything. I will tell you that I have been stuck in the apartment all this past week on bed rest, so that I don't hurt my knees worse than they already are. I have to stay in the apartment even still, because my Doctors appointment isn't until Thursday. So, that's the update as of right now. 

So this past week has been really slow obviously, so if you're expecting a long e-mail I'm sorry, because we weren't able to go out and have any experiences.
But I can tell you that we were in the apartment this whole time, studying, cleaning, and basically just trying to stay sane. There's only so much work you can do from the apartment. I hope that this coming week we can do a little bit more, but I don't really know what all to do. We have been talking as a companionship and we have compiled a list of 17 things to do, and we have accomplished somewhere around 15 of them already. So this coming week could be jam packed with study time! 

Again, I'm sorry that this e-mail is short. I wish there was something cool that I could talk about, to entertain you folks back home for a little while. But that's about all I got.
Make sure to keep up the challenges, and do what the Savior would have you do. Remember, He has commanded us to teach each other, part of that is coming to church to be taught, another part is baring testimony to others, and another part is reading your scriptures, to let the prophets of old teach you as well. Please, please, just DO IT! This is what we have been commanded to do, and there is no excuse on this planet that gives you the ability to disregard it completely. I honestly don't care what is happening in your life, the Lord WILL provide a way to accomplish the things that he has commanded us. So don't ever tell yourself that you're just too busy to read your scriptures, to go to church, any of that. You aren't too busy, I promise. 

I will also make you another promise, the Lord will bless you immeasurably  for your obedience to His commandments. Remember that he has said that he is bound when we do what he says, and that obedience to these commandments is the ONLY way to receive blessings. D&C 130:20-21. Don't forget that, no matter what, keep the commandments. The Lord will back you, so it shouldn't matter who stands in your way, because you have Him at your side. Don't lose faith, press on, and you can do it.

I love you all,
Elder DeFreese

Monday, July 22, 2013

Eh?

July 22, 2013
This subject line is very near and dear to my heart. And.... the spirit constraineth me, that I speak no further. So shall it be.
Anyways, I suppose I'll talk about this past week. And I'm going to be honest with all of you, this past week has been probably the hardest, physically, of my entire mission.

As most of you know, I have really terrible knees. This problem has been going on for a loooong time. And so far on my mission, it has only gotten worse, to the point that I couldn't work for most of this week. I've tried to tough it out and say to myself that I can get through it, it's just something that I need to get through on my own. But just last night I finally had the Zone Leaders come over to our apartment to give me a blessing. I now know that I need to seek medical attention, talk to my Mission President, and see what the best course of action is. I have no clue what is going to happen in the next few weeks. But I do know that whatever happens, happens for a reason. I know that no matter what, the Lord is going to put me where I am needed most. I don't mean to worry or upset anyone. (Especially you, Mom) But I do want all of you to know what is actually happening on my mission. I don't want to sugar coat it all the time and say how amazingly fantastic a mission is ALL THE TIME. Sometimes a mission is the hardest thing ever. BUT, what I can tell you, is that this is the most rewarding work that we can possibly do on this Earth. I know that for a fact.

Anyways, this past week has been really slow, because of my problems, so we weren't really able to work all week. So to be honest, I don't really have any cool stories or anything this week to share with you. 

However, I want to share something with all of you that has been really bothering me lately. I have come to realize that Members in this Church, see us missionaries as the "men on the front lines" whenever there is a problem or concern or anything, they ask the missionaries instead of Home Teachers, the Bishop, etc. In my own personal opinion, I think that this is not how it needs to be done. Missionaries are like.... the specialists. We are not the front line infantry, we are the tanks, and aircraft, the support for YOU members, who SHOULD be on the front lines. There are MILLIONS of you, and only thousands of us. It is your responsibility, now more than ever, to get out there and DO what you have been called to do! Every member a missionary. I am not asking that all of you get out there and start tracting or something ridiculous like that. But what I am saying, is that you ALL have been given a divine, and sacred calling. The Lord Jesus Christ has told us repeatedly to feed his lambs. Home Teaching/Visiting Teaching/being neighborly, these are all things that we as a church SHOULD be doing. How is your Home Teaching going? Are you really making an effort? Or are you making excuses? Distance does not matter, time does not matter. The Lord will help you with whatever you need when you are doing His work. Do you really think that you don't have time to visit someone? Do you really not have the time to help one of Gods children? Ask yourself that question. Can you honestly look the Savior in the eye at the last day, and tell Him that you did your best? I sincerely hope so. My time here on a mission has shown me that most everyone hates home teaching. Why? It absolutely angers me more than anything. You have been commanded by the Lord Himself to do this work. It should be JUST as important to you as following the Word of Wisdom, the Law of Tithing, and so forth. Even if you have that house that never answers the door, or they just don't want to listen. Does that mean that you should just not go anymore? Really? Would the Savior give up on one of his sheep? If you say "yes, in some cases" You are a liar. Flat out. The Savior will never give up. And neither should we.

I thank all of you for your love and support, and I ask that you please remember me in your prayers, and remember the challenges that I have extended to each of you. 
Love,
Elder DeFreese
P.S. I hope you don't get offended to my comments, If you're doing your home teaching, and doing a good job with all of that, then you shouldn't be offended in the first place. And if you ARE offended... well... Book of Mormon prophets got stoned and persecuted when they told sinners the truth so.... take what you will. Just know that In the Doctrine and Covenants it also says that whom the Lord Chastises, he loves. So when I say these things, it's not because I'm angry with you, it's because I love you, and want for you to follow Him as close as humanly possible!
 
 
1. Me and Bro. Gile on Transfer day
2. Elder Kempter and I on Transfer day
 

 

Monday, July 15, 2013

The weekly Semana....?

July 15, 2013
I stole this weeks title from Don... who stole it from Adam I believe... but no. This is not the weekly Semana. Even though it seems a bit appropriate now that I'm in an area with a TON of Spanish speaking people!!!!!!!!! But I'll tell you about that in a second.
This week was Transfer week! I had to leave Concordia on Wednesday, say goodbye to Elder Kempter and all the branch members that I happened to see on the way out, and then head on out here to Garden City Kansas! This area was in the Colorado, Colorado Springs mission, and I am here with mostly those missionaries who were a part of that mission! So it's really interesting to see the differences in rules and policies and such. 

Anyways, this area, Garden City, and the Ward that I'm serving in... has 4 companionships just to the one ward. Also, the population here is about 50 percent Spanish. So... I'm really glad that we have a companionship here that is Spanish speaking. So they get to handle all of that stuff :) 

I am still the District Leader, and the Zone Leaders here are a part of my District, so I get to hold them accountable, humble them a little bit ;) Nah just kidding, but it's nice having them in the District. 

Oh! My bad. Some of you are probably yelling at me (Maybe it's just my mom) wondering who my new companion is. His name is Elder Heppler, and he is from American Fork Utah! So that's cool, he's a real good guy, funny, and easy to get along with. We're having a good time already.

But, when I first got here, we immediately got home, and I had to change into my service close because we had a dinner appointment/service opportunity in about 10 minutes! So, I changed and got the heck out of there! We went to the families home, (I'm forgetting their names right now... my bad!) and we pulled a bunch of weeds, and laid some mulch in the garden. It was fun, and a good way to get to know the other elders (and sisters) right off the bat. All of the companionships were there at dinner, so that was good for me to get to know them.

Then after that we finally came back to the apartment, where I was able to really take stock of things. The whole place was a gigantic MESS!!!! Super gross, so we spent all the next day cleaning up the whole apartment, taking out garbage, vacuuming, stuff like that. And to be honest, that's how it's been pretty much this whole week. We have had to spend a TON of time cleaning up the apartment, the area book, and just making sure that WE are organized and ready to get out and work. I very strongly feel that we can't be very effective missionaries if we can't even keep our apartment clean. 

So that about does it for this week!
OH! One funny thing did happen actually 2 nights ago. Elder Heppler told me in the morning that he was trying to get to sleep when I started to kind of mumble nonsense in my sleep, he tried to talk to me to see if I was awake or not, and then all of a sudden I sat straight up, and yelled at him, "It's UNLOADED!!!!!!!!!!" then I laid back down and went to sleep like normal! I don't remember a dang thing!!!!!!!!! Hahahahahahahahaha!!!!! :) Fun stuff.

We're having fun out here, doing the work of the Lord. Please keep me in your prayers, as I keep you in mine. I love you all, and I want you to know that I know, that our Savior lives. That Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Harvest. This is His work, and we are all a part of it. 

Elder DeFreese
P.S. Write me this week and tell me how you're doing with "the challenges" that I've given you! I want to know how it's going!  And if you haven't done it, then maybe you should. Wanna know why? Because a prophet of God has said that every member is a missionary. So, that means that you need to get out there and do some missionary work. If you aren't, can you really look the Savior in the eye at judgment and say that you've done your best? Think about that...

Elder DeFreese

July 12, 2013
 
I am Regine Thompson, the Relief Society president in the Concordia Branch (Salina, Kansas, stake).  I thought I’d take a minute to let you know how fortunate the branch feels to have had your son serve as a missionary in our area.  He is so thoughtful and nice to everyone and very enthusiastic about teaching the gospel.  I just wanted to let you know that you should be proud of what an outstanding young man he is – plus, we’re keeping him fed!

On another note, my dad grew up in Springville -

Monday, July 8, 2013

It's A Wonder to Behold!

July 8, 2013
This is sort of an inside joke with my little brother Braden. So.... yeah. Any questions, concerns? Well... just ask Braden! He'll probably tell ya :)
So, this week has been crazy! And I've got some... news... at the end. So stay tuned!
On Tuesday, we didn't have ANY set appointments, so we decided that it would be best to get out and see the Less Active members of our Branch, as well as the Active members. Hopefully we could get some referrals out of it, and get some New Investigators! So, we drove ALL over the place, our area covers around 2600 square miles or so, so we had a lot of ground to cover. We were able to talk to a bunch of our Less Active Members and had a great time with them! It was a good day.
Wednesday...
On to Thursday! :)
On the 4th of July, which also happened to be my older brothers birthday, Don. Shoutout to my bro! Happy Birthday, hope it was a good one! Can't believe everyone did ALL those fireworks JUST for your birthday! :)
Anyways, our 4th was pretty good, we were invited over to the Harris' for a BBQ and to watch their fireworks! It was really great, they had ribs, burgers, dogs, brats, potato salad, all the good stuff! Then we had the fireworks show, and they have some COOL stuff out here! A lot of things in the air, and stuff that explodes! Michael made a bomb out of sparklers, you can probably look it up online. I got a video of it. It was sick! Oh... should I have mentioned that? Don't care, it was awesome :) What's the 4th without a little bit of explosives?
On Friday we had our District Meeting and then we went on exchanges! I stayed here in Concordia with Elder Holt, one of our Zone Leaders, while Elder Kempter went with Elder Moyle to Manhattan. It was great! Our appointments for Friday afternoon all fell through, so that was a bit of a bummer. But it's OK!
Then on Saturday we had a huge service project out in Mankato, with a non member named Mark. He just bought a huge house that needs a lot of work done, and so we got there and got to cutting down a bunch of trees that had grown around his cast iron fence. It was hard work, but it was real fun, I enjoyed it. Elder Holt is a farm boy from Idaho, so he enjoyed it as well. After that we got back, showered, changed, and headed back to Salina so we could exchange back! Headed home, and went right to an appointment with a new investigator, David. It was great, he met Brother and Sister Gile, and now he's got a solid fellowship in the church! Sad story is, David is in a retirement home. He's 48, and he's paralyzed from the waist down. He was an EMT, riding to the hospital in an ambulance, when a speeding car (who was being chased by the police) ran into the back of the ambulance where David was. Killing 3 and leaving David in his condition. He's a really great guy though, and he likes having us over!
On Sunday, we were able to get David a ride to church as well, so that was awesome! He really enjoyed it, and he's anxious to see us again. We'll be seeing him tonight.
So.
Here's the news.
I'm being transferred out of Concordia, to Garden City. That's a new area that we have picked up because of the mission split. The Kansas Wichita Mission has part of the Colorado Springs mission, and the Missouri Independence Mission. So... I'm going to an area that I would have never been able to go, barring this mission split. So I'm excited! But at the same time I'm really sad. I've grown to love the crap out of the members here and I wish I could stay just a little longer. But I know that the Lord is sending me there for a reason, and It's my job to find out why. Wish me luck!
I love you all, and I hope to hear from you soon!
Elder DeFreese
P.S. remember the mission office address? It's 7011 E 13th st. North
                                                                     Wichita, Kansas
                                                                           67206

Monday, July 1, 2013

Holy Moses!

July 1, 2013

Holy Moses is probably my most frequented subject line. However, I think it's important that we recognize that it's fun to say!
So... this past week I didn't write down any high points to cover so I'm just going through my planner trying to find some of the highlights. So if this ones a bit boring... well... then you don't appreciate missionary work :) I'm just kidding, this past week was a bit rough as far as the "numbers" go.
Anyways, on Monday we were able to get some service done for our Recent Convert Diane Milhomme, with our Recent Convert, Michael Harris, and his family! It was great! We had a lot of fun, and we got a bunch of work done in her garden. It was a great time, and it was cool to see how readily they got out and got to work! Even though it was weeding... and I hate weeding with a passion. But we still made it fun, and we got a lot done! :)
Then on Tuesday morning we got some more service done for a Less Active family in our branch, we did a ton of yard work for them. I mowed their big lawn while Elder Kempter edged it. It was really fun, I like to mow actually, it's nice to see the finished product.
On Wednesday we had team ups with a few of our Branch members and I went with Bro. Matthews to meet with Mark and his family, Mark is on date for the 14th of July if I'm remembering right... but anyways. He's doing really well and we had a great lesson with them! He's got a few W.O.W. issues that he's working out, but other than that he's doing really well, and we're excited for him!
On Thursday we had dinner with a recently activated family, the Russels, they have a few grand-kids who are very less active and we taught them about the priesthood, they got more and more involved as we got more into the lesson, and they even came to church yesterday! It was awesome, we're making some progress with them, and we're very happy about it, it's awesome!
On Friday we had our District Meeting and I gave a training on our Personal and our Companionship studies. One key point that I think is important is that we share EVERYTHING that we have learned with those that we know. Even if those things seem trivial to you, it just may be that the other person doesn't know about it, or, even if they do, the conversation could lead on to help you learn 3 or 4 OTHER new things. So keep that in mind, share what you learn when you study, it helps you learn even more.
After District Meeting we went on exchanges, I went with Elder Hamblin (Who is from... I can't spell it but I'll try... issikwa Washington) Anyways, I went with him to Salina where we had several Baptismal Interviews set up, I interviewed a little girl, Selena, and her dad, Sam. They're awesome!!! They were baptized on Saturday and it went really well. Good stuff :)
Anyways, other than that.. this week was really slow.
Elder Kempter and I have been getting dropped left and right all week, as well as last week. It's been a rough time. But it's alright, we're still out here working hard!
Remember to keep going with those challenges of mine! Invite someone to church, this week could be the week! Read your scriptures! And BEAR TESTIMONY!!!!!!!! You can do it, I know you can.
Love,
Elder DeFreese
 
1. The monster sandwich!
2. Elder Hamblin and I after exchanges :)




Monday, June 24, 2013

K

June 24, 2013
For those of you who are wondering about the subject line, let me just say this. If you have ever seen any of the MIB movies, you would know that Tommy Lee Jones is a representative of the letter K. However, my usage of the letter is merely a representation of conversations frequently had between Elder Kempter and Myself. These bouts of the tongue are often finished when I use such a word. As Elder Kempter puts it, "Best conversation ender ever!"
Hahahahahaha, I hope that made at least one of you laugh. Because I did!
Anyways, this week has been a big one!
On Monday evening, we left for Salina, where we met up with the other Elders in my district. We had a few hours left of P-Day so we went and played some Basketball and Baseball, it was pretty sunny out so I got a bit of sun, it was enjoyable!
Then, we came back, got dressed, and headed out for Wichita Kansas! It was a LONG car ride over, but we made it with a bit of time to spare, so we went and had lunch at Taco Bell, where I got 3 Cheesy Gordita Crunches, and a small drink. We then went over to the Wichita Elders home, to stay the night. Before bed we had a few hours still, so we played a "quick" game of Risk! I was able to thwart any and all advances upon my armies, and therefore became the victor. I'm good at Risk.
After a long, dreary night wherewith I wrestled about 4 hours of sleep from my anxious body, we went to the Wichita building, where we met with all of the missionaries who are going to be in the Kansas Wichita mission with us, President and Sister Keyes were there as well. We saw the new Mission Home, the new Mission Office, and then got on the bus and on the way to the Temple!
After the very long bus ride, we arrived! All of the missionaries were assigned what to do in the Temple, as we were doing all of the Temple's work for the day. So, Elder Kempter, Myself, and a bunch of other missionaries went and did a session. It was amazing, I have never felt the spirit so strongly as I did with all of my fellow servants as we were at the house of the Lord. It's just indescribable. I recommend it. :) I saw 2 temple workers there that I knew from my ward back in Independence as well! Brother Christiansen, and Brother Ellibee. They're awesome! I got to catch up with them for just a few minutes. It was great!
After this, we went to the church building just right across the street, where we had a bit of a meeting, where President and Sister Keyes had to say goodbye to us. It was a very tender moment, one that I will never forget. We got to talk to them for just a few precious seconds, and then we got back on the bus, headed back to Salina so that we could get back to work. So now, with us in the Kansas Wichita mission, we have a brand new Mission staff, and a brand new Mission Home, and everything! It's exciting!
Without going into too much detail, as far as the missionary work this week goes... it was a bit disappointing. We got dropped by almost all of our investigators. BUT that's OK, you know why? Because we're still missionaries! We still get to go out and find people who ARE interested in the gospel! It's great! Just because one person stops, that pushes us that much harder to work! I know that it seems real discouraging, but I know of no other work that is more satisfying than this work. That is because this is the Lords work, and he has entrusted me with this particular portion of it. I'm so grateful for this opportunity.
With that being said. I feel impressed to share with those who are reading this, just a little bit about before my mission. This is mainly directed to those who are entering into the age where "missionary" is a scary thought. To those who aren't sure, or perhaps who have already made that decision.
This move that you are to make, is one that THOUSANDS have already made. Whether for or against going on a mission. Let me tell you about myself, before I left, I felt very angry. Nobody cared what I wanted to do, they just wanted me to go on a mission. They never asked if I wanted to go or not, they just assumed I would. This made me mad. I also had some serious concerns that I had to take to the Bishop to even think about going on a mission. This also discouraged me. I had always known that I should go, even if I didn't want to admit it. But this decision looms in front of all of you reading this. Before I left I was going through a lot of trials and struggles, things that were of my own doing. However, as the time got closer and closer for me to make that decision, I felt somehow cheated. I felt like I hadn't been prepared well enough. I felt somehow, that my leaders, my friends, and even my parents, hadn't done what was best for me. I felt that my life was in shambles because they hadn't helped me enough. If this is anything as to what you're feeling, I ask you, are you really upset at your parents? Or are you just upset that you KNOW what you're supposed to do, and yet time and time again you're making decisions that you know you shouldn't? That's how it was for me, my leaders, friends, and parents ALL taught me exactly what I needed. In this church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, we teach correct principles, and the people govern themselves. To those of you who are trying to make that decision to go on a mission... what's holding you back? Why are you really afraid? Is it because you have some baggage that you have to get rid of? Is it because you don't have a testimony? Or is it for something trivial, and stupid, like money? Do you not realize that God and his son Jesus Christ are ALL powerful? Do you not realize that all of the Prophets have always encouraged youth to serve missions? So what's really holding you back? Surely the Lord will provide forgiveness where it is needed, money for the poor, clothing for the naked. Surely the Lord can help YOU.
For me, there is no reason why a mission is something that anyone can't do. It's very simple. You who have decided not to go on a mission, I love you unconditionally. But honestly, I am disappointed. I don't care who you are, the Lord wants YOU to be a missionary. And he's waiting for you to make that decision. Don't let that decision looming ahead of you come upon you unawares, meet it head on. This decision is huge, I won't deny it. Sometimes worthiness is an issue, sometimes it's a testimony, whatever it is, the ONLY thing that can seriously hold you back is yourself. It does not matter your background, it does not matter how you feel right now, God is unchangeable. He will ALWAYS want you, and he will ALWAYS love you. Make the decision to serve a mission NOW. Don't hesitate, it will be the best decision of your life, I can promise you that. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Elder DeFreese
 
1. The Puddin' challenge!
2. Cooking sandwiches!
3. Happy Barn :)


 
 
 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Happy Fathers Day!

June 17, 2013

To my wonderful, awesome, Papa Bear, Terry DeFreese :) Happy Fathers Day!
Even though I never seemed to pay attention to your teaching opportunities, even though I may have rebelled a little more than I should have at times. Even though I thought your counsel was stupid before, I love and appreciate every single memory I have with you. Dad I couldn't imagine being anyone else's son, and I am proud to be yours. Even though I may have made some wrong choices, all of your guidance and help along the way has shaped me into the man I am today. And I will be eternally grateful for that.
Oh. And you're old :)
So, this week has been a kind of slow week, but it's ok! We're keeping busy in the work of the Lord, and it's going great!
I just wanted to quickly recount a story from last week that I neglected to mention. One of the families in our ward has a farm, and they bring fresh farm eggs to the branch every week, whoever needs eggs, gets them! Anyways, one of the kids was transporting those eggs to the building, and dropped about 10 cartons full of eggs. Breaking almost every single one of them. This was just after church and a lot of people were outside. A big group of the youth just stopped dead wherever they were, and went over to help the young man who dropped them. It was a really cool experience, showing how loving these kids can be, they had the perfect opportunity to just laugh and stare as the young man struggled. But they didn't, they showed that they are full of compassion and love, just like the Savior. Without hesitation they all went and helped. It was a very proud moment for me, Elder Kempter and I had been working with one of the young men, who is pretty much the Youth's leader. Every ward/branch has that one youth, who is the undisputed leader. This young boy has been Less Active and slowly becoming reactivated. He led this group to help clean and organize what was left. It was awesome.
Anyways, not much else to tell really, this past week we have had most/all of our appointments cancel... so that's been tough/frustrating. But it's ok! We're doing our best, and making the most of our time here. I'm loving the work, and I can't wait to get back out there!
Really quickly I just want to say to ALL who are reading this. No matter where you are in life, no matter what struggles you are facing... you can make it. You can do it. Do not give up, do not falter, put your faith and your trust in the Lord, seek help from your parents, church leaders, friends, they will help you. As a representative of Jesus Christ, as one of his chosen servants, I can promise you that you CAN make it through whatever you are facing. I do not care what it is, because Jesus Christ atoned for all of mankind, he suffered every pain and every affliction. He will help us, of this I testify, In the sacred name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Love,
Elder DeFreese
P.S. I'll hear from all of you soon right?

1. Elder Allen, Elder Moyle, and Myself. All of us are previous companions of Elder Hayes.
2. messing with my camera features :)
 

 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Who's ta say? Who's ta know?

So..... this subject line is something that I used to say a lot to my Dad! Shout out to my pops, hope you're good, and I love ya!
Anyways, this past week has been a pretty good one!
The first thing really exciting that happened this week, which is probably the highlight of the whole week really, is this.
On Tuesday after a long day of work, we came home and got a voice mail from the Mission President to the whole Mission. What he said was because of the mission split, we have received special permission to go to the Temple, on the 18th of this month! All of the missionaries who are in the new Mission will go on that day, and everyone from the Missouri Independence Mission, will go later. How AWESOME is that!?!?!?? It's super exciting! I'm so happy, and I've been hoping to go to the temple again! Boo yah!!!!!! :)
On Wednesday we had some real good team-ups with our members here. Elder Kempter went with our Elders quorum President, and I went with our the Bishops Secretary. It went really well! Elder Kempter had a lot of success, 4 new investigators and a bunch of return appointments. As for Bro. Lucky and myself, we had more Less Active work, and that went real well also. Hopefully those members will remember the spirit that was there, and want to come back to church.
On Friday I had to lead my first District Meeting! It wasn't bad to be honest, I could have done a lot better. But we focused on our purpose as a missionary, and what makes us successful missionaries. If any of you have a Preach My Gospel, I would strongly encourage you to read chapter 1. It applies to EVERY member. Wanna know why? President David O. McKay said very specifically that EVERY member is a missionary! So... Preach My Gospel isn't just for us full-time missionaries, it's for all of you back home! So please read it. But my favorite part is that it tells us not to compare our efforts to others. And I think that really has helped me in my life. Our success is not determined by what we can physically see as "Success" it is determined by our commitment to serve the Lord, in whatever capacity we can. If we do our best, we are JUST as successful as the missionary who baptized 93, even if we got big fat zero. That DOES NOT MATTER. If you understand Preach My Gospel, and the Scriptures, then you understand that the numbers don't matter at all. It's all based on your own personal commitment to serve, and if you have done your best, how can the Lord condemn you for it? Answer: He won't. He loves us, and he KNOWS EVERYTHING. Don't forget that.
Anyways, that about does it for this week!
I hope and pray that all of you are safe, and doing well.
Have I mentioned my challenges recently? Everyone! Remember! 1.Read your scriptures! 2. Bear Testimony! 3. Invite someone to church!
The Lord will bless you, I can promise you that. Don't be afraid, don't wait for tomorrow. Because, "Tomorrow never comes"
Love,
Elder DeFreese

1. BOOM! Look at that tie!
2. You jealous? (Home made burger, with Monterrey cheddar, White American cheese, bacon, lettuce, Ranch, Ketchup, and lots of love!)
3. Ooooh.... a Nova!
4. How 'bout that tie? :)
 
 

 
 
 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Transfers...?

June 3, 2013

As I alluded to in the subject line, this past week was transfers! "Elder DeFreese, what area are you serving in now?" You might ask, I might reply, "Same place!"
Ok, yeah I'm in the same place, Concordia Kansas. Serving with Elder Kempter! Boo Ya! We're super excited for this coming transfer, lots of work to do, and lots of people to help! Oh, on a very very small not, barely worth mentioning. I got made District Leader, so... yeah. Anyways...
This past week has been pretty great! Fairly slow, as Elder Kempter recovers we are able to get out and work more and more, but it's a process and we don't want to rush it.
We have a new family that we are teaching, the Brants, they are super cool, and very willing and open to learn about the Gospel. Very inquisitive, and super happy too! I could see them progressing quickly!
Our Recent Convert, Michael, has been coming out with us and teaching other people about the gospel as well! THAT is SUPER exciting, while we're still teaching him and his family, he's already reaching out and helping others, the exact same way that we helped him! We're SO excited because of him, and he's really getting involved in the Branch, it's really awesome to see.
Oh, Something that I forgot to mention. With this most recent transfer being the deciding factor of which mission I'll be serving in, I am proud to say that I am now a part of the Kansas, Wichita mission! I had a fantastic 7 months or so serving in the Missouri, Independence Mission, and now it's time to make my mark in the Kansas, Wichita Mission!
This week in Fast and Testimony meeting I felt very strongly that I needed to get up there. So up I went. (After some hesitation, I'm still human after all) And the message that I shared was one that I think could benefit all of you back home. As well as everyone in this church. In Matthew chapter 5, verses 14-16. It talks about how we are the light of the world. "Let your light so shine before men, that they me see your good works and glorify your Father, which is in Heaven." Let your light shine, be the example that the Lord would have you be. That is my message to you. It does not matter what trials you face, as you do your very best to be that light to others, to the world, the Lord WILL bless you for it. I can promise each and every one of you that as you put your faith in the Lord, and try your best to be that light, the Lord will have no choice but to bless you for it. "I the Lord am bound when ye do what I say, but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise" He will bless you. No matter what trial you face, or hurdle that is in your way, Jesus Christ WILL help us. As His servant I promise you these things, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
I love you all! Please remember me in your prayers, as I remember you in mine. Love,
Elder DeFreese

1. Burgers... Home made?!?!?
2. Oh yes, they're delicious :)
3. Just lookin' good is all...
4. I got a new tie!
5. We've been playing some card ball...
P.S. I got 2 other new ties, those photos to come next week!
 

 


 

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Graduation!

May 28, 2013

This particular title is in honor of another fallen comrade. My younger brother, Braden cornelius edwin DeFreese III, has graduated from Springville High School! Congratulations to him, as well as the whole 2013 class, but mostly to my Brother because that's the one that I know best. :) Aaaaand... he's awesome and I love him!

Such talk is tiresome to me, for it shows unto all, my love. Which is not freely given, but more of a reward, for hard work, and obedience.
Meanwhile, in the Mission Field, Elder DeFreese and his Compatriot, surnamed, Kempter, are working hard in their labors in Concordia Kansas. Let us see what they are up to....
This week has been great! Elder Kempter is slowly recovering and feeling better each and every day. So we are getting out and working more and more! It's going very well, and he's loving the fact that we're almost back to normal :)
Nothing too interesting really happened this week until Friday, when we had District Meeting! All the way down in Salina, we met with the District and had a great meeting, and everyone participated and had a good time. It's always fun to catch up with them, and see how the work is going in their own respective areas. Love it!
After District Meeting, the Great Bend Elders (DL) had to come to our area to work for a little while, our DL Elder Sweeten had to interview our Investigator, Gary, for Baptism! The interview was at 7:30, but we got back at about 2:30, so we had some work to do! Good thing we had a few appointments that we could go to! So, we went to the Harris' and had a great time with them, taught Michael about the priesthood, and it was sweet! He's super excited, and will be talking to the Branch President soon about getting that, so that he can help bless and strengthen his family. Then we tried a few potentials, had home made tacos at our apartment for dinner, and then went to Gary's house! We had a great time, and he was interviewed and "passed" for baptism! Then, the Elders Realized that they couldn't make it home in time for curfew, so we called the Zone Leaders and they approved a sort of sleep over, so they stayed the night! Doesn't happen too often, but those experiences seem to follow me around :)
Anyways, that was a lot of fun, we had a good time working, and catching up and such. Good stuff, then on Sunday, Gary had asked me to Baptize him, and Elder Kempter to Confirm. It was awesome! The water was SUPER low though, not even to my knees, and Gary is just as tall as I am! So it was tough for us, I had to let him down kind of slowly and then unbend his knees, but we got it on the first try! Even with the difficulty, the spirit was very strong in that room, it was amazing! Gary was very nervous before, and extremely happy afterwards! He was asked to bear his testimony, which he did, and that was one of the most powerful moments on my mission, this man KNOWS the gospel. He will be an amazing member, and a great leader some day. I love him, and I know that he's ready for this next step in his life.
Memorial Day was yesterday and I just want to give a quick shout out to anybody reading this, who has served, is serving, or who will serve in the armed forces. Thank you. For everything. It is because of you that we have these freedoms to worship the Lord, and it is your efforts that bring us the feeling of safety, and peace that we enjoy. Thank you.
On Memorial Day we were invited to a members BBQ, and we had a really good time, meeting with the family and getting to know them, reminded me of the BBQ's we would have back home, good times!
Anyways, I gotta go, I love and appreciate you all, and I hope to hear from you soon!
Elder DeFreese


1. Tacos!
2. 40 lbs. of new investigators...?
3. Gary's Baptism!!!


Monday, May 20, 2013

Happy Birthday!

May 20, 2013
You people back home must be getting sick of my title having something to do with Birthdays!!! Haha, but this week was my sister Breanne's birthday, it was just yesterday and she turned 37! Go ahead, ask her! She will tell ya! Anyways, just wanted to give my sister a birthday shout out, I love her to death and I'm so proud of her and all she's doing. Can't wait to see my nephew one day soon!
So, missionary things. Y'all want to know about 'em. Well, I'll tell ya!
This week has been a fairly slow week actually, Elder Kempter had a few health issues and we had to stay home for 2-3 days, so we did the best that we could with what time we had. I'm glad for the rest I suppose, Elder Kempter really needed it, so I'm glad that I could help him out. He's a great missionary, and I'm happy to be his trainer.
Anyways, this week we had a Baptism! Michael Harris, definitely a tender moment for me. Michael asked me to baptize him, and I was more than happy to oblige. It was just.... awesome. It's one thing watching the baptism, and it's a whole other experience being in the water. It's so cool, the spirit was SUPER strong in there. The water was a bit too low, just barely above my knees, so I had to really shove him down there, but we got it done on the first try, so I was happy about that. Michael was really excited, nervous, and super happy! While we were changing he just kept laughing and talking to me about how happy he was, and it was just so amazing to me, because we have seen Michael make so many changes in his life, from start to finish. And it's just the coolest thing ever, I wouldn't trade that experience for anything in the whole world!
Another cool thing happened, we have been working with a couple, Logan and Lori, and Logan came to the Baptism! He felt the spirit so strongly, and when we came to their house to teach them afterwards, he just plain KNEW that it was true. He had felt the spirit so strongly, when before he was kind of wishy washy on the whole idea of getting baptized. Now he knows that this is what he needs to do, and we asked him what's holding him back and the ONLY thing holding him back, is they haven't gotten married yet. So we're working with them on that, helping them as much as a missionary can in that aspect, but really it's just a matter of whenever he makes that move! And he will be baptized, and Lori expressed the same feelings, they KNOW it's true. I love it!
Oh, just thought you all might want to know that I'm getting to be a better cook, just last night for dinner I baked some chicken strips with salt and pepper, and, get this, Doritos spicy nacho flavor crushed on top and bottom of the chicken, and then with about 4 minutes left, I put white American cheese on top. It was DELICIOUS!!!!!!! Elder Kempter and I have been making some really good combinations, he's a MUCH better cook than I am, I usually leave it up to him.
Anyways, that about does it for the week!
I love you all, and I want each and every one of you to know that I know that this church is true. I know that Joseph Smith restored this church through the gift and power of God, and it will NEVER be taken from the Earth again.
Remember my challenges to all of you, read your scriptures, truly feast on the words of Christ, Invite someone you know to church, and Bear testimony! You can do it! "Look unto me in every thought, doubt not, FEAR not" Don't be afraid, the Lord will help you do these things.
Love,
Elder DeFreese

1. Michael at the Baptism
2. Another DELICIOUS meal!
3. Good eatin'!
4. Our wonderful District
5. Elder Kempter with a BIG pancake!
 
 




 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Happy Mothers Day!

Hey Mom!
This letter is to everybody, but I'm going to be writing it, as if I'm writing my Mother. You wanna know why!? Well, mainly because my Mom is the best Mom ever! Even when I was a teenager, I wanted my Mom to come with me anytime and anywhere. Why? CAUSE SHE'S FREAKIN' AWESOME!!!!!!!!
Mom this week has been CRAZY! We went all the way to Salina for our Zone Training meeting, and that went fairly well. Elder Kempter passed off one of his lessons, which was sweet! He's working very hard. I saw Sister Stobbe at the meeting as well, she came out with me from the MTC, so it was good to catch up and everything. And I saw Elder Moyle! He's my "brother" in the mission, Elder Hayes trained us both.
After Zone Training, we went on exchanges! Mom I went all the way to Great Bend! It was weird! Haha, but it was fun! I went with Elder Maki, he's from Samoa, and our exchanges actually lasted for like 3 days!!!!!! The Great Bend Elders had a bunch of different appointments that they didn't really account for, so with the ride situations and everything it just worked out best that way. But we did a lot of great work, and we had fun doing it too!
OH! Mom, check this out! We saw a freakin' turtle on the side of the road!!!!!!! It was crazy! We stopped and took pictures and stuff, it was a snapping turtle too! We were going to pick it up and put it in the back of the members truck (this was on the way back from Great Bend) but neither of us really wanted to pick up a snapping turtle. But it was cool :)
Mother dearest, I feel all too strongly that I need to tell you.... I love you :)
*ahem* Anyways, we had a baptism just yesterday! Diane, and Henri. They were both baptized and confirmed, and it was such a great experience. They both went under on the first try! Elder Kempter baptized Henri, while Brother Gile baptized Diane. Then I confirmed Henri, and Pres. Hansen (Bishop) confirmed Diane. It went very smoothly, and I felt the spirit SO strong. it was very cool, I can't wait for next week! Michael and Gary are going to be baptized as well! It's going to be so sweet, I'm very happy and excited for all of them!
That actually about does it Mom, sorry it wasn't too productive of a week for ya, I wish I had more cool stories to share.
Mom I know you're doing the challenges that I give to you, but keep it up! Keep reading those scriptures, Keep inviting others to church, and always bear testimony as you do so. The Lord WILL bless you, I can guarantee it. As a representative of Jesus Christ, I can promise you that you will feel the spirit more fully in your life, and that you will be happier, more full of energy, and you will have power over all temptations that may arise.
I love you Mom, more than I can say.
Elder DeFreese
P.S. Write me soon.......... K?
 
1. Home made mac and cheese!
2. Do you smell... photo bomb!?
3. CHAINSAW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Hola!

May 6, 2013
Hola! Como estas!? Bien!
That's all I got! Haha, but this week has been pretty great!
It was a fairly slow week to start, Elder Kempter injured his hip while we were out tracting, and so we came back to the apartment and called the medical staff and they said to keep off it for a couple days. So we weren't able to get out and work like we wanted to, but it's all good! We persevere!
This week... we have been visiting our Investigators who are on date a LOT more frequently than normal. When they are this close to Baptism, I have seen time and time again how hard the Devil works, so we are keeping him at bay, and helping them all to grow spiritually.
Our Investigators who are on date for this Sunday are Diane and Henri, they are SUPER cool, and Diane has been waiting for this opportunity for a LONG time! So they are very excited and working very hard to learn this gospel and prepare themselves for Baptism. I know that they're doing that, they're very good people. Love 'em!
We also have been working with Michael and his family quite a bit, he's doing really good, and you can literally see the glow that is in him, he's SO in tune with the spirit, and it's so awesome to look back and to see where he started, and where he's at now. I love him so much, and I'm so glad that they are calling me, "my missionary" It's super cool.
We have been working with a man named Gary as well, we met with him and his family on Saturday and Sunday, and on Saturday Gary asked us to give him a blessing because he was having trouble with the Word of Wisdom. He then asked me to give the blessing, and I happily accepted. When I started it, I can't remember really anything that I said. But I do know, that the spirit was SO strong in that room, that I started to feel a little dizzy, Gary did as well, and he testified right then and there that he felt the spirit. He's so ready for his Baptism, and he can't stop smiling!
I love the people that I work with, and I'm so excited to be here. I know for a fact that the Lord sent me here, for these people. I can feel it. I know that the Lord isn't finished with me either, I've got plenty more to do, and I'm about to get out and do it!
Don't forget about my challenges everyone, keep studying your scriptures, it's a COMMANDMENT. There is no question about it. Invite others to church, it shows your love for them, and your love for the Lord. He will bless you because of it, exercise your faith in him and do it! And bear testimony!! It strengthens your own, while you lift others even higher!
I love you all, and I hope to hear from you real soon!
Elder DeFreese

1. My Son :)
2. Say wha!??

 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Happy Birthday!!!!

April 29, 2013
Elder Hunter Nelson had a Birthday!!!!!! He's 20 years old, and he's still rockin' it out in the mission field!!!!!!! My Brotha is staying cool, working hard, and preaching the good word of the Lord! I'm so proud to call him my Best Friend, and even though I can't really get him a Birthday package, I'm sending my love! He's such an inspiration to me, and I can't even imagine where I would be without him standing as a freakin BOMB example for me!
Anyways, back to me. Because I'm important to some people I suppose...
So, this week we had a great miracle happen! We are teaching a bunch of investigators right now, and there is one in particular, Gary... he's been taught a bunch of the lessons but he never really wanted to make the commitment to be Baptized. He has always said, I'm not quite ready yet. We affirmed that he knows this church is true, knows Joseph Smith was a prophet, knows the Book of Mormon is true, just couldn't figure out what was holding him back! He is a truck driver and so he's gone all the time, so it's really hard to get a time to meet with him, and we decided to talk to him about it the next time we were able to. He was out on the road this past week and so we were going to call him the next day (this is on Wednesday) So, we were just about to get out to work, and Gary calls. He tells us all about these awesome spiritual experiences that he has been having and then says... "Guys, I want to be Baptized... I'm ready." AH!!!!!!!!!!! Boo-YAH!!!!!!!!!! That was so awesome, we talked a little more, and he was insistent that we do it as soon as possible, so we set his date for the 18th of May. Because it's so hard to meet with him, it'll take a bit longer than usual. But he's really excited and he can't wait to get Baptized!
Then on Thursday we were about to go out to work again, when we received a call from Michaels wife, saying that Michael is going through a very hard time, and we should go visit him. So we got really worried, and went straight over. He was having difficulty with EVERYTHING. The Devil is working VERY hard on him, and he expressed all his feelings to us, we felt impressed to give him a blessing, which helped him immensely. As we prepared to leave, I felt prompted to ask if he needed any service, he said no. I looked around and saw a massive pile of dishes and said, "you sure?" he says, yeah, don't worry about it. I was prompted again, JUST DO IT! So, I started rolling up my sleeves and said, "Nah, YOU don't worry about it!" And we did all those dishes, talked to him, and you could literally see his eyes light up, and the weight just disappeared off his shoulders. After this experience, he expressed great respect and love to us, and we talked a bit about his Baptism, to which he is VERY excited about, and VERY prepared for.
Then on Friday night, we had a dinner appointment with them! We went over and had Fish Tacos, which were REALLY good!!!!!!! I had 7, a house record :) Haha, they wished me a happy birthday because Elder Kempter let the secret out! But it was really fun, after dinner we had a nice sit-down and talked about Baptism, and further prepared him for the interview. It went very well, he knows his stuff! He looks deeper into the questions sometimes, like with the Word of Wisdom we asked what he understood about it, and he just went off about the BLESSINGS that come from FOLLOWING it! And then we said, oh we were talking about what you have to do, so he explained that part to us. He is very smart, and he's SO ready! We're super excited for him!
Then on Sunday, We had 3 of our Investigators come to church! Diane and her Grandson, and Michael and his family, Diane has been having trouble coming to church because her car is very iffy, but she's getting it fixed and she is way excited for her Baptism. She called us after church and told us that she felt the spirit SO strongly, and she just expressed her thanks to us for coming into her life and teaching her in such a way that she could REALLY feel it, it was super nice to hear. Love it! Michael got a lot more fellowship in the ward, he loves the people, and they love him back. Church was AWESOME!!!!!!!
So that's the week's proceedings! Tune in next week and maybe you'll hear another miracle! After all, the Lord does work in miracles! (Mormon 9:19)
Everybody, the Lord BLESSES those who WORK HARD, and do what is expected of them. I am a living witness of it, BUT, don't take my word for it! Go out and do it yourselves! You'll be surprised with how quickly and how often the Lord will bless you with whatever you need! I love this work, and I know that the Lord has sent me here to Concordia Kansas, for a very specific reason. Quite possibly for these investigators that are to be Baptized in the coming weeks.
Keep reading your scriptures, bearing testimony, and inviting your friends and family to church. You will see the blessings, I can guarantee it! (John 14:27) Whatever you're afraid of, quit it! The Lord will be with you!
I love you all, and I hope to hear from you soon.
Elder DeFreese

1. I been to Norway!
2. Birthday package :)

 

Monday, April 22, 2013

You gotta be kidding me!

April 22, 2013
Ok. First off, I want to say, that this week was the HARDEST week of my mission. Elder Kempter and I were having a very hard time getting any work done. This being Transfer week, we weren't able to set any appointments with people because we didn't know what would be happening and so it would just make things worse if we set anything up. So...... we didn't have any plans at all for the week. We tried tracting, we tried visiting the members, we tried it all. Literally EVERYTHING fell through, ALL week. I was getting very frustrated, and very angry with myself. I was constantly praying for guidance and I wasn't getting any. I couldn't help but feel let down. BUT, we kept working, we kept pushing. We truly endured this week. And at the end? It was TOTALLY worth it.
First off, I will tell you about the mud incident on Wednesday. This was part of the reason I felt let down. We were out tracting and I felt super prompted to go and visit one of our members a far ways away, so, I got really excited that I was finally having a prayer answered! I started to think, man, If I hadn't been in the right mindset, this wouldn't be happening.... I started to get prideful. SO, we decided that we would visit this member, who, by the way, is the only member in that particular town, and then we would visit people on the way back to Concordia. We got the GPS, put in the address, and off we went! Well, we got to a certain point where we turned off the Freeway, no big deal, then we were directed to turn onto a county road... gravel road. It has been raining for the whole day, and most of the night before... So, as we turn onto this road I see a sign saying, "Gravel Ends" I immediately felt prompted to STOP and turn around. BUT, inside myself I said, "but I was prompted to go and visit this member, how else can I get to them? The Lord will guide me through this way..." nope. The Gravel ended, and we got stuck in the mud. Elder Kempter got out and pushed us a bit further ahead, where more gravel was. Feeling AGAIN the prompting to stop and turn around I thought, "nah, we're on gravel now! We can make it! The Lord helped us get through it!" We got over the hill and ALL the road was mud. We got stuck. I was very upset at myself, at God, and even at whoever put the signs up. Mostly I was angry with myself. I couldn't believe that I had my very own pride cycle on my mission. I turned to God, and we called one of our members, Bro. Gile. He came and got us out of the mud with his truck and we safely returned home, having spent the entire day stuck in the car, with rain and lighting all around, just wasting time.
So, feeling let down, like the week is going downhill we continued. Working hard and doing what we should, not really feeling much prompting from the Holy Ghost, until Sunday. One of our investigators, Michael, Came to church!! He brought his whole family too! He felt the spirit very strongly, and expressed his thanks to us for never giving up on him, for always believing, and helping him get to this point. We sat with him throughout the church services and parted was very happy and excited. THEN, later in the day we felt prompted to visit them that very night! Up 'til now, Michael has not felt comfortable in setting a date for his Baptism, and we felt very prompted to invite him again today. We taught him various commandments, including the word of wisdom, and we bore powerful testimony and we had a very great lesson. Near the close I felt that it wasn't the right time to invite him to be Baptized, like we had earlier talked about. I felt instead, that Michael needed a blessing. So, we asked him, and he admitted that he would REALLY like one, and that he has a sure need of it as well. Elder Kempter gave him the blessing, and it was very strong, the Spirit was DEFINITELY working through him, Michael expressed his thanks, with tears in his eyes, and both of ours as well... and we invited him. He readily accepted and we have him on date for May 11th!!!
Everyone, the Lord DOES bless us, as we work hard, have faith in him, and do not get discouraged when Satan is working on us! DO NOT get discouraged!!!!!!! It WILL weaken your faith, I can testify of that as sure as I can testify that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God.
I love this work, and I know for a fact that I am here, specifically in Concordia Kansas, for a reason. I love my Savior Jesus Christ, and I know that through Him, we can live with our Heavenly Father again.
Remember to keep my challenges going people! This time I want you to report back and tell me how it's going! Keep inviting your friends and family to church, even if they say no, they'll know that you're thinking about them, and they'll know that you love them. Keep reading your scriptures, get that spiritual nourishment! I'm going to be trying to finish the Book of Mormon again in 6 months time, maybe you could try with me! And bear testimony! I know that as you do these three things, you WILL get closer to Jesus Christ, and help others to do so as well.
I love you all!
Elder DeFreese
 
1. How in the.....?
2. Big Field :)
3. Quite possibly the best picture EVER!
4. I'm a... master chef.
5. Elder Kempter, hahaha!
6. Bird :)
 


 
 


 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

You don't know things!

April 15, 2013
Hahahaha, so this one was a line that I used to say. Elder Jones (my cousin) said that he always thinks of me when he says that line. However, I can't for the life of me remember it! But it sure sounds like me so I'll own it!
Anyways, this week has been pretty great! I got a few letters that really brightened my day/week, and we had some MIRACLES!!!!!!!!!!
Ah, I love miracles, they inspire me to look for more! So, on Tuesday we met with a potential, named Diana. After meeting with her for about 5 seconds it became VERY clear that she has been preparing for this for a LONG time. She has been reading the Book of Mormon along with the Doctrine and Covenants, she KNOWS this church is true, KNOWS that Joseph Smith was called of God, and she wants to be Baptized!!!! AND she takes care of her grandsons, Henri and Jason, and Henri is 9 years old... He wants to be baptized too!!! How cool is that?!?!? The only hurdle that we have, is that she lives about a half an hour away from us by car. So the only thing we need is a member to drive us out there, but with Bro. Gile, our Branch Mission Leader, it's not a problem so far. She has been prepared by the hand of the Lord for years, and I am so excited to help her reach her goal, part of her goal is to get the temple work done for her deceased husband. Super cool, I'm so happy to be a part of this change in her life!
Then on Wednesday we had Zone Training, it went pretty well, we learned some things, and we had some fun together. I'm learning to love this zone just as much as my last one, even though the Salina Zone is VERY spread out, we don't see each other unless it's a meeting. But it's all good, I'm lovin' it! Anyways, after Zone Training we got the car to use for the next little while, and as such, we had to drive all the way back! So, we stopped off at Walgreens to see if there was anything they had, that we don't have in Concordia, that we need. After we parked, we witnessed an accident! The person backed into the other, and drove off, staring us down as she did it! So obviously, we wrote down the license plate number and everything, and went and told the manager in Walgreens. They were very appreicative, and so was the driver of the car that got hit. So that was interesting! But now those people see that the Mormons are honest, trustworthy people, so we did some good there.
So Elder Kempter and I have been tracting quite a bit, it's been a very long while trying to build up this area and get some solid potentials and such. But I find that it's safe to say that Elder Kempter and I have now tracted ALL OF KANSAS.......................................... Street. Hahahaha, but we have been doing a lot of tracting lately, and we are definitely seeing success! The Lord is truly blessing us in this area, and it's because we are getting out there and WORKING, day in and day out. We work until we literally can't anymore. Even though we have mainly tracting to fall back on at this point, we don't let that discourage us. We get it done, because that's what the Lord needs, he needs obedient, hard workers.
That's what I want to challenge everyone to do. This week... as you do the other challenges that I have asked, I want to add another one. Working hard, even when it's things that aren't appealing, or things that may seem insignificant... need to get done. And this can apply to your scripture reading, to your inviting others to church, and to bearing testimony. Work HARD for those opportunities to serve, I hope that all of you take me seriously when I say this. And if you don't know how or where you need to focus your efforts, PRAY, ask for guidance, the Lord will show you where you are needed when you let him know that YOU are ready for His influence. I know that as you do these things, the Lord will bless you, He will take you by the hand and help you do what he needs you to. I would emphasize though, you MUST work hard to do it! Really show the Lord that you are making a consistent, concentrated effort to become like His Son, Jesus Christ. He will give you strength.
I love you all, and I'll talk to you soon!
Elder DeFreese

1. Sound logic...
2. I made Bulls-eyes!
3. Conference!
4. Just playin' some Ball on P-Day
5. Oh you want some more? I am quite sleepy...
6. Hm...
7. Pondering...
8. Gotta love studies!
9. So this is what he does in his spare time?