Monday, March 13, 2017

Snow and the Sacrament

Hey folks!

Hope you're enjoying the daylight savings. It made for a groggy Sunday for us, but it's also making for fantastic missionary work because it's actually light until 7 or 8 now.

We had a great week. Wish I had the time to write about it but I don't. We finally saw our investigator Karla though! She's doing great. Still wants to be baptized. She's struggling to feel worthy to be baptized though. She's living worthily right now, but there are things in her past that bother her. We've had a good couple of lessons on the Atonement though and I noticed this week she always walks away with a huge smile and seems to feel way better. We also saw our investigator Bill and he set a date on his own for when he will quit smoking! Awesome stuff.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is true. As we keep the covenants He has revealed to mankind, they bring us unto Him and help us become like Him, and they give us joy. I know He lives. I know the power and grace of His Atonement. He will help you make the changes you want and need to make in your life and He will help you have real joy if you will just come to Him. Prayer, scripture study, and coming to church are a good place to start. Especially coming to church. It snowed this week and they cancelled church (I know.... I chuckled too) so we almost didn't get to partake of the sacrament. I say almost because we actually had the opportunity to administer the sacrament in the homes of some of the ward members, and in the process we were able to take it ourselves. It was really powerful to bring the sacrament into people's homes. It brought the Spirit so strongly, and going out of our way to do it and seeing just how grateful people were to receive it (and how grateful I was as well) really reinforced for me how great a blessing it is to be able to partake of the sacrament each week. Let's not take it for granted. I like how King Benjamin speaks of taking upon ourselves the name of the Savior in Mosiah 5:8-9, 12. We need to always retain His name in our hearts. Partaking of the sacrament each week helps us to do that.

I love you all!

Elder Alex Swindler

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Life's Good in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Hey folks!

I've got no time. We had a crazy day yesterday. I did get permission to send y'all a brief email a day late though. :)

Our week was great! We had stake conference. Randall, our investigator, came. He's doing well. He says he isn't ready to set a baptism date just yet but he wants to be baptized sometime in the next 6 weeks.

We haven't been able to get ahold of Karla. If you wouldn't mind praying for us that we can get in contact with her again, that would be really helpful.

I had a super powerful experience on exchanges this week! I was with Elder Hull, the district leader down in Blairseville, GA, and we got a call from someone asking if we could come to the hospital and give someone a blessing. We had a flexible evening so we were able to go. It turned out to be a man in his 20's. He's been married about 2 years, they have a 5 month old daughter, and he had been in a bad car accident. It involved someone else going 150mph in a 25mph zone and hitting his car. If he lives through it, he'll be paralyzed from the chest down. His poor wife was devastated.

The blessing honestly should have been way more nerve wracking than it was. There was a lot of pressure on us after all. And what if it isn't the Lord's will that he be healed? But we just felt this complete feeling of peace and calm and comfort, that it would be okay. And as we gave the blessing it just felt to me like the Lord was trying to tell us all that these things are according to His will for this young family. Things will be okay. That even if our lives don't go exactly as we might wish, they do go according to a plan that is far greater (and ultimately far more joyful) than any we could ever dream of. It was such a powerful experience, one that I'll not soon forget.

The gospel is true. I know it! I love the Savior Jesus Christ. He lives, He loves us, He is the Captain of our lives, and this is His Church. He will lead us to beautiful and joyful paths if we will allow Him to mold and shape us. Let's all try to be a little more like Him this week, and let's strive always to invite others to come unto Him.


Elder Alex Swindler
132 Springside Rd Apt D1
Asheville, NC 28803

Videos: From our drive back in to Asheville from Knoxville

Enjoy this video of me spanking Elder Stockinger as he was trying to spank Elder Creasey:

1) Asheville traffic

2-3) Pretty stuff

The rest) We visited the Biltmore Estates yesterday and it was awesome! I took about a million pictures. Here's a few of them.