Monday, May 30, 2016

One More Transfer Left

Hello!

Sounds like a fun busy week. Jordan's a stud, he looked great. I'm sure it was quite the weekend. Who was his date?

Little brother Jordan's high school graduation

That's way exciting he's an Elder now! The Melchizedek priesthood is an awesome advancement. There's a lot of power that comes with it. When he's endowed he will see the Lord's hand a little differently in his life. I wish I went to the temple more before my mission. I've only done like, 2 endowment sessions... So I really don't remember anything...

Well, I can basically already play all those instruments and things. I was more thinking about giving the lessons. Something, I don't know if this is a long term thing or just to get on my feet. But I've been thinking very seriously about starting out with a music studio of sorts. It would basically just be me teaching lessons, I'd do basic recordings, I'd create and type out curriculums and things. Kind of what I was doing with guitar back home, but broaden it more to suit other musical interests. I try not to think about it very much, but I do feel as I pray that I need to do music some how for the rest of my life. I really do believe that it's a gift that Heavenly Father has entrusted me with. So I want to do something with it. Give lessons. Record. Help music become a blessing in more people's lives. That and I did the math, I can make a lot of money! So that's why I asked. It'll keep me busy until Spring semester so I can save up money for school, wherever I end up going.
What do you think of the idea? I can't bother with taking lessons.

The running shoes.. They're for running..

Yeah the DR trip got moved to September anyway so it's all good.

But yeah, things are good here. Just moving along. Transfer calls were good. Nothing is changing here, so I'm excited to stay! We're working with lots of people still. Busy week with meetings and things. Helped out with some institute stuff. I think it'd be so fun to teach institute. CES always looked like a fun job.

Not much to report though other than just we've been working hard. Lots of finding, lots of teaching. Lots of awesome people we're working with. I hope things at home are still going well. I've officially only got like, 6 and a half weeks left. In hind sight, it's all gone by so quickly. I feel like I still have so much to learn! But we're getting there. It's been raining a lot so my shoes look like garbage all the time. They're a chore to clean every single day.

I'm still alive

Love,
Elder Zeck

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Lots of Appointments

Hello!

So yeah, it's Tuesday and it's raining a ton. I think we're going to go out to Negril anyway just for the fun of it. . Also gotta get a key copied.

Things are good.

That's great Jordan's graduating seminary, that's very important! He's going to be a great missionary. I can feel that. He just has to remember that serving a mission is like running a marathon. You can't walk, or sit down or run. Some missionaries will try to pace themselves so they don't burn out. But God commands us to sprint the entire distance, which seems impossible. And honestly, it is impossible! But God promises us that if we sprint as hard as we can the whole time, when we have no more energy left, we will realize that we aren't the one doing the work, and we realize he carries us through every single step. It's been a very real promise in my mission.

Sav's great. I've only taught more than 20 lessons in a week maybe 3 times on my mission, and this week we shattered my all time record with a big 30! The key, is the members finally trust us enough to work with us. And we received almost 10 referrals, we taught 30 lessons, met a ton of people, and ended the week with 20+ new investigators to work with. And the members have started to call us to ask when they can come teaching with us! This is the very thing we've been working for for 5 weeks now! It feels good to see fruits. We don't have time to take meals some days we are so busy, it's ridiculous. But it's good. We have a lot of people just asking us if they can be baptized.

We have had an issue recently though with people receiving spiritual witnesses that our message is true, and knowing they have to be baptized into our church, but then they see the repentance process and get frightened and we never see them again. It's heart breaking and frustrating. So we started over with some people, with a world of potential! So the work is great.

I'm well, although my shoes are impossible to keep clean. And I'm focused. I don't think about girls and stuff like some missionaries do haha. I'm starting to very vaguely recall how many weeks I've been out. And I was wondering if you could do me the biggest favor you've every done for me ever? Possibly even bigger than birthing me...

So I was hoping you could do some research for me and find some average costs for various forms of music lessons. Namely...
Guitar
Piano
Voice
Bass
Drums
Cello
Violin
Mandolin
Ukulele

Some of these may not have "average costs" because they're weird. But that'd be great. My 5 year plan will be greatly affected by the research you do here. If you don't want to though it's whatever. It's only a request formulated from sincere prayer and fasting, but it's whatever.

I also need to know what the odds are, even remotely, of coming on the temple trip here in Jamaica. I'd obviously just meet them in Panama, or DR, or where ever, but I gotta start putting dates on a calender. Also, how much is an average plane ticket to Scotland?

Also in preparation for my homecoming, I need some things...
- All black pair of Saucony running shoes. Just jet black.
- Motor cycle with a side car
- An agreement that if I feel so inclined my first 48 hours home can be spent sleeping
- Permission to go to Utah for October Conference, and also in the summer go to through the temple with a convert from Portmore.
- Taco in a bag

Love,
Elder Zeck

Monday, May 16, 2016

Just a Little Letter Today - 60 days left

I've added a couple of bits from my letter so that things make more sense........

Hello!

So we had Elder Davidson over for dinner this week.
That's good to hear you had him. What did you eat?
Yeah he was a good missionary. The Lord definitely trusted him. What's his life's plan now?

So yeah, the week was good though. Not much else to report. Just missionary work. Pulled some zinc roof off a house, killed a couple dozen wasps while we were at it. Did some member work and so forth. It's been very very hot lately.

Yeah, i pulled out the money. You can give me more money if you want, but I don't know why you would. I don't have a bicycle. I'd probably just use it to buy stuff to bring home.

Dad and I spoke in YSA today for High Council Sunday. It was fun. I haven't spoken in church in ages and I even left your dad lots of time for his talk. I spoke about changes and transitions in life and making decisions. Said we need to Trust in Heavenly Father, keep an eternal perspective, have faith, and be optimistic (or hopeful). While preparing for this talk I was reminded of your first letter from Jamaica and your description of being this really white sweaty guy who didn't understand anything that was being said and carrying your broken bike down the road. You said that it was going to be a long 24 months. When you look back now, can you believe that? 
Yeah I actually read through the journal entry for that day a little while back, and I kinda laughed. I always knew I would enjoy the mission. But back then it was more, "I hope I enjoy the mission" Now it's, "I know I enjoy the mission" So that was a fortunate adjustment. 

My shoes don't really look that trashed.... I'll send pictures next week.

Love,
Elder Zeck

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Final Mother's Day Skype!!



Our Skype on Mother's Day

Our week was good. Our companionship unity is getting way better, so our lessons are better. We've had very few bad lessons, meaning lessons where we don't feel the Holy Ghost. It's just hard in our area because it's a little more ghetto, there are a lot distractions. From drunk, obnoxious, Rastafarians, to loud vulgar music, to children and stray dogs. So that's the struggle right now. We had a few people on date for baptism but we realized on Friday that we weren't proselyting in our area ha ha... whoops... So we're back to square one again, which is fine, those people will still get baptized and that's what's important! They are the Lord's recent converts! Not Elder Zeck's recent converts.

But yeah, Skype was cool, good thing that was my first one. I might send some pics.


Elder Zeck and Elder Anderson in Kingston


Elder Zeck and Elder White in Sav


Happy the light jacket and umbrella came in handy.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Working Hard in Sav

Sav is great! Wonderful place. We're definitely seeing miracles every single day. Elder White has a really natural desire to be exactly obedient and hard working, and he really wants to just do the work, which I'm very very grateful for. He isn't going to let me die hard (not that I ever would). I'm working harder now than I ever have, because I know how to work more now than I did before. 

Yeah I took out some cash, I was going to buy a bike, but we have decided to probably just stick with walking for the last 12 weeks. Help me spend more time in the sun so I don't come home as white as I was when I came out. So if I don't buy the bike.... I might get a watch made out of wood...the walking is great though. We still teach almost 20 lessons a week, which was what I taught in Kingston with a truck, so I think we're doing some things right. 

Elder White is great though. He's a convert and the only member of the church in his family. He's got a great story, and I've already learned a lot from him.

I don't really know about my 5 year plan. He told me that I could start it after my last interview with him, which will be end of May early June... So I'll have like 3 weeks to do it... So we'll see

Yeah I get along with the other Elders pretty well. I've been blessed with good friendships my whole mission. I've been reflecting a lot on my mission and life, I've just been so humbled. I don't know what I've done to deserve everything I have been given. My mission hasn't been perfect. But I've finally started to become something that I'm proud of, and I know my Heavenly Father is proud too. I've gotten along with every missionary I've met, I've made great friends. I receive a lot more praise than I know I'm worth. Which is good! Because it guilts my pride into trying to be better.

I should be able to swing a 3:30 Skype time. I'm not sure where yet. I realized it was Mothers Day too only yesterday! I'm way excited!

Otherwise, good week. It went by quick, which seems to be the plague of my next couple transfers. We're working hard. I'm trying to be a good example. I'm by no means perfect, and it's obvious while training. But it's good. We're working with some wonderful families, we have set some high goals for ourselves as well. I'm almost done the Standard Works! Once I'm through Ezekiel I think I'm done!

Zone meeting was this week in Montego Bay. Trip down memory lane, however this time I wasn't the one teaching it! I haven't enjoyed the pleasure of receiving a zone meeting in a year. That was a funny thought. It's really nice just being a normal missionary again. I literally felt a burden lifted as I was on the bus to Sav. It's so nice.

But that's my life. Just praying, finding, planning, studying, and teaching!

Love,
Elder Zeck