Tuesday, July 30, 2013

"Just doing my job"

NO COMMENT...smile

 Sleeping? or Praying? 

Sent 29 July 2013

Hello Everyone!

I feel like it's been a long time since I last made a blog post! Life in Poquoson is good. Being on a bike is fantastic! The work here is doing very well. I mentioned all that in my last letter huh? I don't know where to begin. There has been so much that has happened. So far I have not been hit by any passing vehicle (although, I have had a couple VERY close calls (sorry to mention that Mom)). We have several investigators that we're currently working with and all are so very different. It's amazing to see how some people are wired. The differences in people's backgrounds, interests, personalities, etc, really show the need for the Spirit to be involved in people's conversion. There is only so much that we can see with our temporal vision and that makes it all the more important not to jump to conclusions with people. What we see is not always what is going on. The past few months I've been really striving to do all I can to learn to recognize the Spirit's promptings and to make sure I don't do anything to lose that most precious Gift.
Here in Poquoson there are a lot of families that have been here since it was settled. A lot of people's roots go back far here. With that, a lot of people aren't always anxious to change because a couple young strangers dressed up in white shirts and ties are knocking on their door. The Lord is hastening His work. I know that's a phrase being tossed around a lot but it's very true. The simple fact that there is more and MORE emphasis on MEMBER-missionary work shows that. Let me share with you some of the doctrine:
In my studies this morning I studied in the book of Jacob. We all know about Jacob 5 where he quotes the prophet Zenos in his allegory of the tame and wild olive trees. There's a lot of confusing twists and turns in there if we're not careful but one thing is very clear, and the Lord clearly states it in verse 41. "What could I have done more for my vineyard?" or rather, "What could I have done more for my children on earth?" If you look at the footnotes it directs us to 2 Nephi 26:24. What does that verse say? What does it refer to? The Lord states VERY clearly that after the Atonement WHAT MORE CAN HE DO? He makes that same expression is verses 46, 47 and 49. The Atonement is the most supreme expressions of love and commitment that far surpasses all understanding.
Moving on, the Lord then expresses to His servant the need for a final harvest before "the season and the end" (v. 77). So, what does He do? He arounds up all the servants that will heed His call and it is recorded, and this is where I would like to focus, "and they were few" (v. 70). Ok, the full-time missionary force of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is around 70,000. That's very few compared to the population of this planet. However, in these verses the "servants" are not referring to full-time LDS missionaries as is commonly thought! Why do I make that statement? Turn to 1 Nephi 14:12, "...the church of the Lamb of God, and it's numbers were few." So, who are these "servants" that so diligently heed the call of the Lord of the vineyard as recorded in Jacob 5? They are the members of the Church. The time has come for all who call themselves a Latter-day Saint to arise to the call of the Prophet, the Servant of the Lord of the Vineyard who is rounding up his fellow servants, and join the Lord in the last and great, member-missionary harvest of souls.
Read verses 72-73 and 75 and see what the result was. In this world of "wild branches" and "evil fruit" we need to arise and work so we may see the "natural fruit" spring forth once again. The vineyard will soon be burned and the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ will commence. Let us do our duty as MEMBERS and spread forth this message.

There is no greater work to perform.

In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Elder Smith

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

New Pictures of Elder Smith - Smile

 He is with his new companion - who transferred into the new mission
only from the Raleigh North Carolina Mission
Elder Smith is loving serving with his new companion!
 Other Elders he is serving with...

 He left this "Word of Wisdom" pamphlet on the front step...

Monday, July 8, 2013

Independence Day and New Mission President

4th of July "Get-together"

 His awesome NEW COMPANION!

 Elder Smith's "Posterity" (mission slang)
with Mission President and wife...
He trained the two standing and the Elder who is kneeling
is his "Grandson" who was trained by one of "His Sons"

Member of the church - pushing Elder Smith around
at store - after spraining his ankle

 Newport News South Zone before transfers...

Hello Everybody!

Happy (late) Independence Day! It's always great to celebrate the beginnings of this great country. Yes, it was the beginning of freedom once again. Yes, it was the beginning of opportunity once again. But best of all it paved the way for the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! With that comes true freedom - eternal progression for those in this life, and for those who have passed on who had been waiting for centuries to gain the blessings of eternity. I wish we could always remember that.
Here's a weird fact: I have now officially served a sister's mission...the 4th of July was my 18 month mark (I swear I'm not counting).
Ok, so what have I been up to? Missionary work :). Being on a bike is great! I've been able to sweat off a few extra pounds of "winter storage" (I'm telling ya...it's hot over here) and it's a great stress reliever. This area we are in has picked up a lot since my companion and I got here. We have a several very promising investigators, less-active and part-member families we're working with. This ward is super missionary minded which helps out a lot.

This past week I met my new mission president: President Baker. I'm impressed. He's raising the bar for us missionaries out here and he has a great vision for this mission. If there is one lesson I can take away from experiencing a change in mission bounderies AND a change in the mission president it's this: Follow the key-holder. The Lord has set up order and organization in His kingdom and it is led by Priesthood authority. That is the only way it can function and thus the Lord calls on men to be leaders out of necessity. Those who hold keys are those who are authorized to direct to affairs of those under their stewardship and direct the work of salvation. Those men are called of God and because of their calling and authority, there is safety for us only if we listen and heed to direction and counsel that they give. President Baker is taking this mission in a new direction but I know he is called of God for this work and my responsibility is to sustain him and heed his counsel. So it is with the rest of us.
Also, transfer calls were last night and my companion and I are both staying.

Life is good.
Elder Smith

Monday, July 1, 2013


Our son was unable to write a letter to everyone, today...but, I will post
bits and pieces from his personal notes to his dad and I.

***TAKE NOTE that he now has a NEW MISSION OFFICE address
where all his mail can go to...If you send mail to his 
or may not get him...Might want to send it to the 
office for now...till we know for sure how
long he will be in YORKTOWN...

OK...Here are snipits from our correspondence, this morning that you might be interested in:

Hello mother! Today is the official day of the mission split. I'm NOT in the Virginia RICHMOND Mission. (he is officially in the NEWLY ORGANIZED "Virginia Chesapeake Mission"... (see new mission office address posted on this blog)

We'll be meeting our new MISSION PRESIDENT tomorrow at our mission conference. New things are comin!