Monday, February 27, 2017

His Grace is Sufficient, February 27, 2017

Hey y'all!

This week was a great one! We had much fun today and I shall tell you about it!

We shall do Dallas Daze first,

So this week was hilarious, we were teaching this 90 year old guy Charles and we are talking about the word of wisdom. He loves the idea and says he can easily live that. So we are talking about it and he's all, "water is all I truly need anyway! you know though. (Saying it all in this funny voice because he's had two strokes) if I ever go to Dallas, I will have to drink milk or something because the water there, man that water tastes like it's got a TURD in it! Smells like there's a big ol' POOP in there! Man that Dallas water smells like a POOT! I can't drink that, no way." To his credit the water is quite terrible. People get bottled water more here because the water well and truly smells like a poop and tastes similar I'm sure.

This week was awesome. We had some fun stuff happen but what was the bomb was this lesson we had with a lady tracting. We had the spirit with us stronger than ever because we asked a lot of questions and it was awesome. She kept answering genuinely and truly was into the lesson. Elder Hatch asked her if she had a bible and told her to go grab it, (seriously inspired I had never done that before but I'm gonna start because it was awesome.) she gets it and we then read some verses with her about the apostasy and such as well as the scripture in Ezekiel about the Book of Mormon and the Bible being one. We talked with her about Jospeh smith and how it t doesn't make sense all
churches claim to be the only right one and how by the fruits of people you know them. We read Ezekiel with her and asked her, "so why do you think this is in the Bible (in her own Bible mind you)?" She said, "well it sounds like scripture for people." We said, "yes! So where is the stick of Judah?" She's all, "would that be the Bible?" And we said, "yes, so if that's the Bible, the Bible is talking about another book that's suppose to be one in the Lord's hands for Joseph, where's that one?" And she said, "well man I don't know?" (The scripture reference is Ezekiel 37:15-17) and we then explained how a fruit of Joseph smith was the Book of Mormon and how he translated it by the power of god and with the Bible and it, you can now have the full truth. We then read the verse again with her. And then she was looking st us and we pulled a Book of Mormon out and slapped it on top of her bible becoming one in our hands nd then said, "so where is the stick of Ephraim for Joseph?" And her eyes got super wide and said, "oh my goodness!" #prophecyfulfilled right in front of her eyes, she loved that and said, "can I have that one? Can I read it?" We said absolutely and then explained why the Book of Mormon is important and such. There was much more detail to it but that all happened naturally and it was the coolest thing to see her realize that there is a possibility of a true church out there and she can know by reading a book prophesied of by Ezekiel in the Bible. So that was awesome. 

Now for a cool experience that isn't necessarily spiritual. So this business that a member just started is open and it's called Zed Crossfire. Essentially it is call of duty in real life. What they've done is they've taken real M4 rifles (or some type of rifle that's what I was told they were but they were definitely at one point real) and made em super crazy laser tag guns. Still the same gun but they are laser tag guns with Co2 in the clip so it has a little kickback when you shoot. When the co2 runs out you reload. The vests are dark
until you get shot and you then run back to the tent you started in and re spawn. It was AWESOME. There are tons of these places around the country and it runs off of a base program but the battlefield and such is up to the business owner. So we got to play this game today as a district and ITS AMAZING. Literally what you would play on a video
game but in real life. And thankfully enough my skills from games seem to apply somewhat here too because I did pretty well. We had to make accounts and everything and so my name naturally was ASa55yPastry (had to replace sassy with sa55y because the system was thinking I was swearing). I explain all this so I can send these awesome pictures. There is way to much detail to explain about this game but essentially it's like putting yourself in a video game. It was so cool and we got to play for a long time. The members that own it are really close with us and we got s referral out of it too. So that was extremely fun.

But ya, that was my week highlights. Something I've reflected on a lot  this week was in Brad Wilcox's talk his grace is sufficient. We have been saved by grace, but have we been changed by grace? Because no unclean thing can dwell with god, but no unchanged thing would want to anyway. If everyone will be in tux's and fine dining wear, would you
want to be there dressed in a swim suit and no shirt? Of course not! Heaven will not be heaven for those who have not chosen to be heavenly. I invite all to listen to that talk as well as the one from last general conference, Am I Good Enough, Will I Make It. And then please, follow the council in my last email and just pray, pray for eyes to see it like God does, for a desire to be heavenly, pray pray pray. Then read read read, and obey obey and obey. There's so much joy in eating a perfect steak meal over hot dogs from the hot dog stand. So take a step and just try the steak. It's delicious.

I love y'all!
Elder Hiatt

Monday, February 20, 2017

Put Christ First, February 20, 2017

Hey y'all!

This week was great! I must talk about the obvious topic that happened, Neil L Anderson speaking to our mission and also another meeting where he spoke to the stakes in north Texas.

Dallas Daze

Alright so this week we were driving some elders to the meeting and on the way back we were talking about batman because we saw a ad for the batman lego movie on a store building as we drove by. Well we were makin jokes and this elder we were riding with was like what if batman voiced the scriptures well then he was all, "who was Jacobs wife again?" Then in the batman voice (he does a really good batman voice) he's all "RACHEL!!!! RACHEEELLLL!!!!!!" We all lost it laughing and it was fantastic. They were super cool and that day was just a bomb day. 

As for the Elder Anderson meeting, He talked a lot about the subject of this rising generations of people don't believe in Jesus Christ. He gave statistics on how 82% of his generation believe in Christ, In his resurrection, and his Atonement. And how my generation only 54% believe in Christ and those things he did. It's unnerving to think that people are losing faith in the savior of the world. So he talked a lot about staying grounded and how we need to do that. He said periodically ask yourself. Do I really believe in Jesus Christ? Do I really believe in his resurrection and Atonement? Do I really believe that he restored his gospel to the earth and we have a true prophet? Do I really believe my prayers will be answered? It is imperative that we believe in him. And if you cannot firmly answer that right now, build your faith. How we do that all starts with prayer. Are your prayers lacking? In Elder Anderson's words, "be over zealous in prayer!" Are we praying in gratitude and thanksgiving to our father in Heaven daily? Are we asking for his help each moment? Are we turning to the source of all light and strength or are we relying on our own fire to stoke itself? The key to building faith is asking help for it from God, and when you do that you will then be at step two. Faith comes by obedience. But ye receive no witness until after a trial of your faith. Are you being obedient? What things are we lacking in? Think of it this way. We all have about 10 balloons we need to keep up in the air. If you've ever tried to do this you'll know that it is difficult to keep them all at the same level. It's much this way when we seek to follow the commandments. Sometimes one drops lower than the other. Repentance is hitting it back up, keeping it afloat. Repentance is NOT BAD. that is the plan of happiness! Repenting! So we discover what we need to do to be obedient by studying Christ, reading his words and doctrine found in the Book of Mormon and the Bible, the pearl of great price and the Doctrine and Covenants, don't forget any one for it is all put together that we receive the full gospel but start with the Book of Mormon if you haven't, it's the keystone of our religion. Study everything Christ said and did, start somewhere and read, don't forget a day! It's imperative to your happiness because happiness comes from repentance but how can we repent if we don't even know what to repent for? We must read and study what color balloons we need to keep in the air and when one falls, hit it back up! This comes from the scriptures. Now when we learn of things to be obedient of we will find acts of disobedience, it's natural we are not perfect, so don't say well dang it I am done, no! I repeat this because it's important, repent! The plan of happiness only works because Jesus Christ came, what did he allow us to do? Repent! A leads to B, B leads to C, C leads to D. Therefore A leads to D. Repentance leads to happiness! And we only can repent if we Pray to god often, study his words, and change what is not in accordance. As you repent and as you live obediently, you will come to say as I can now, I do believe in Jesus Christ, I do believe in his resurrection, I do believe god answers my prayers, I do believe it! And if you don't at the moment but want to, that is okay! It's only bad if you stop trying! Stay grounded in the gospel is the whole message behind what Elder Anderson said! We are losing too many souls to Satan because many forget to lay a brick down each day to their foundation of Christ! Nothing is more important than Christ! He is the rock of our salvation upon which if men build, they CANNOT fall! Well how can you build on a foundation if the foundation is never laid in the first place? Each time you pray, you lay a brick, each time you read a verse, you lay a brick, each time you resist temptation to be obedient, you lay a brick, each time you choose good no matter how small an act, you lay a brick. We cannot afford to lose our souls in these last days for Christ is coming again and we will be miserable unless we follow the plan of happiness given to us by our loving heavenly father and simply choose happiness, choose obedience, choose repentance! NOTHING is more important! Work is not as important, school is not as important, money is not nearly as important, chores are not as important, nothing. Not a single thing is as important as Christ and following him. Now those things I listed do rank in importance after Christ, but Christ must be the head of our lives, for "if we have not chosen Christ in the end, it DOES NOT MATTER what we have chosen." Nothing can compare with Christ. To put him at the head of your lives, you be a PRO. Pray, pray always, pray in your closets, in your fields, in your homes, be over zealous in prayer. Ask for help! it opens up the windows of revelation and guidance in your life, it lets the light in! It's hard to do the second part and read if you don't have light to read! So first, pray, second read. Why read? Read because how will you ever know what to be obedient to if you never read the words Christ spoke on what to do? How can we develop a relationship and follow a man that we know nothing about? How can we know what mistakes not to make if we do not read about people making them before us? We read so we can come to know our savior, so we know what to repent of and how to live. How awesome Christ really is. When you come to know someone you come to love them. And when you come to love the savior, your life will change. If we don't read, we don't know what to repent of, if we aren't repenting, we aren't happy. Because Christ came so we can repent, and he is the key to the plan of happiness. So read! Read a verse, read a page, read a chapter, whatever you can muster now! And third, obey. You have the light in your life, you've read about what Christ has said that if we will follow, he has promised blessings in other words happiness in our life. So then just do it, nobody like to be miserable. If I said eat this steak and you'll be happy and you said, "nah I'll eat my cold can of beans instead and be miserable," how stupid does that sound?(generally people like steak over cold beans so if you for some reason don't I apologize and invite you to see what I'm saying ;D)  In the words of elder Holland, "don't do anything stupid." Obedience has a negative connotation but God has said, "I the Lord am bound when ye do what I say, but when we do not what I say, ye have no promise."  What does the Lord promise through obedience? Well a few are, relief from guilt, relief from pain, joy, eternal families, eternal marriage, unity, purpose, direction, light, blessings, righteous desires of our own, in D&C he LITERALLY promises us, "the fullness of the earth is yours," as we keep the sabbath day holy. WHO DOESNT WANT THOSE THINGS?!!?!? And it all comes from being obedient to the simple commandments god has given us and when we do, he literally can't not bless us. He is bound when we do what he says! Now I understand how hard it is sometimes to do these things, we are not perfect, we battle our natural man, it's a struggle. But that's why we have repentance. Try, try try try, seeketh to do so, and when we stumble, repent and keep going. And do not read about the deception of Satan and say, "oh that may happen for weak people but that could never happen to me," because what your really doin is fulfilling Isaiah's prophecy when he says, "Woe unto them that say All is well in Zion!" When we say this it is how the devil as the scriptures say, "carefully leads us down to hell." The day is coming, and I honestly say the time is here that the very elect will be deceived. Personally I don't see myself classified as a "very elect." And if they're being deceived and led away.....great news for me! It's all about relying continually on God. Don't fall away, and the way you do it is by laying the brick foundation of Christ, brick by brick may seem slow, but as you be a PRO, you lay a brick for each act of good you do. And when you repent, you build up the walls around you. Soon you will have a house built upon the foundation of Jesus Christ upon which if men build, they can not fall. The winds of Satan are here, his mighty shafts in the whirlwind are beating upon us. Many are losing faith on the only name under heaven given by which man can be saved, that being Jesus Christ. The only name, Jesus Christ. Not work, not school, not movies, not cafe rio, Jesus Christ. 

I hope everyone sees what I'm saying here. Things in life are important, but often times we as mortals put our priorities such that we miss a couple days of prayer, we feel that other things occupy the time in which we can read a verse or two. Some times we see obedience as not the most popular thing to do and nobody likes to be ostracized, but fear not, Jesus himself said, "And blessed are all they who are persecuted for my name’s sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." We put other priorities though they are important, above the most important name and priority of all, that being the rock of our salvation, Jesus Christ. But it's that simple, put Christ at your head, and you will be saved. His is the only name under heaven given. First seek ye the kingdom of God, then seek ye riches. Not the other way around. It's the plan of happiness. I testify that if we do not have Christ as our head, if we do not be a PRO in other words, if we do not follow Jesus Christ and repent, be baptized by PROPER authority or take the sacrament after baptism, if we do not follow Christ, your life will be filled with stress, trial, lack of strength to meet those trials, unsatisfaction, temporary happiness, and woe. Satan offers you a ride in which he throws you high in the air and ya feel great but you then come crashing down hard and it takes more and more throws into the air to feel the rush. But God offers as elder uchtdorf said, "he will place you on his shoulders and carry you home." He will carry you to greater heights and you will feel the rush if wind in your face with your feet grounded on solid foundation. He will carry you home. Too many are being deceived, and too many are losing their way. So please, stay firm in your faith. Christ is first, and everything else will fall into place. You will have trials, you will have temptations. But personally, I trust in the strength of Christ to get through it a heck of a lot better than mine. Humble yourself and pray always, sacrifice whatever you must to say those prayers and read a verse or two. Love and happiness requires sacrifice, but as Abraham was to sacrifice his son, he received his sacrifice back and much much more. Whatever you need to do to put Christ first, please do it. Life is so much more enjoyable, trial or not, when you follow the plan of happiness. It can be hard, but it is simple and you can do hard things, because you are a child of God and he loves you. I want you to know I believe in Christ, I believe in what he did, and I know that lasting happiness comes when we follow him. When we be a PRO. Just choose happiness! Who doesn't want that? I know life is far more than heart ache with a few good times spread throughout. It's opposite. Life is a joy and sometimes sad things happen, but even then your life will ALWAYS be filled with joy. Happiness is not temporary, not when its from Christ. Can we just follow him please? I don't want anyone to be lost, and you will be unless you put his gospel as your first priority. You will not have a lasting happy life unless you do. Because any other happiness is temporary, but God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and so are his blessings he offers. I testify of this that Jesus is the Christ, that if you will put him first, you will be happy in all ups and downs of life, things will work out, and you will not be deceived. You will be less stressed. And you will come to know just how real all this truly is. I know these things because I'm currently experiencing them. I give you my witness in Jesus' name, Amen.

Love Elder Hiatt

Monday, February 13, 2017

Never buy a Chevy! February 13, 2017

Hey Y'all! 

This week was great! Lots of learning and overcoming and some great success with a few people as well as MORE CAR TROUBLE :D :D :D :D yeah word to the wise, NEVER EVER EVER buy a Chevy and if you own one and it works well, then its not a Chevy. It's camouflaged as something else because good grief this Cruze is a tool of the adversary.

Dallas Daze

So a few things this week. Firstly, we drove out to find this lady in the middle of nowhere and following the GPS we are driving deep out in the country when we get to a gate that is shut but not locked down a road we are to go down. So we were all, "man we drove this far dangit we are NOT turning back." So we moved the gate and pressed on but soon decided to go back because it was super duper muddy and the car getting stuck was not in our idea of fun. So we got out and walked along this road through the deep forests of east Texas. Mud on our pants and caked on our shoes we get to the end and bam.......Nothin. GPS anything is not accurate I have determined. So we hike back and got in the car. We drove back to some houses in the forest and knocked to see if anyone knew the woman. One did and called her for us. She met us down the road and showed us where the driveway began to her house (all dirt roads and such so very hard to find.) She gets out and we start talking. She says shes got about 13 dogs in at her house and some are mean so set up appointments are best so she can kennel them up. Well as she says that like 8 dogs come trotting around the corner of the tree line and bound up to us. We thinking they were mean were kind of terrified but that was totally not the case. Puppies galore and dogs that just wanted to play. So after trekking to find this lady out in the middle of nowhere an hour and a half down at the bottom of our area, we found her with her army of dogs. Well the other was this Saturday we go to start the car, and I go to back up but it felt like I was riding a horse. My companion asked why I was jerking around so much but when we realized it was the car, we just parked it and got a ride. So back to square one, our car is definitely not fixed as we previously thought. Moral of the story, Chevy isn't my first choice. 

So this week we had an awesome experience with one of our investigators names Charles. Charles is 90 and we have been trying to get him to come to church. We go over and read the Book of Mormon with him and listen to his stories and answer his questions but he said he hasn't gotten an answer that he should come to church with us. We began thinking we would have to stop teaching him when finally this last Wednesday, he accepted to come! We were so excited and he's began calling us his personal preachers and loves having us over. Well when we showed up Sunday to get him he was all ready to go in a suit and tie in a fedora. It was awesome. We got to church and he sat and took it all in. He loved the music, the services, the everything. Well to our surprise he said he had been to the building before for a baptism of one of his neighbors. So he was familiar with it. He came to all three meetings and on his way out he was talking to people on the way out when we heard, "I have been a bishop of my church for sometime and we have got a lot, but your church, you have it all. I want to come more to this church. These young men here, they know how to teach, and have answered more questions I've had that I never thought there was an answer to." It was awesome! So we are gonna be getting him to church as much as we can. People seeing the whole plan coming together is awesome. 

I hope everyone had a great week and hope this one is better!

Elder Hiatt

Monday, February 6, 2017

Sick em' boy! February 6, 2017

Howdy Y'all!

Something I want to share with y'all this week was stuff I learned at church. I have been learning a lot about how the gospel applies to life in every situation and how teaching with the double edged sword or presenting both sides of a choice rather than just one side is so important in every situation. If you want to find solutions do everyday problems within the family, within life, within anything, study the savior and his teachings. We shall go on the subject of repentance. What is repentance? Is changing our wrongs and making them wash away through the Atonement of Christ. Why do we need it? Because when we sin we damage our lives and our future. When do we need it? We
need it whenever we do wrong, without it relationships crumble, lives dissolve, and hope darkens. Repentance is the key to happiness. Okay great how do we repent? Well we first recognize when we do wrong, we admit such, we confess to God our wrongs and we apologize and try never to do it again. So we know how to repent and make things good
with a God. We must take responsibility and say sorry to him. It's simple, but it can be hard. Well so that a religious thing though right? That's just for sin? Well let's look at a husband and wife. A husband and wife fight, there is contention and things in the home are now not so happy. The husband, wanting back his wife, serves her in ever possible way trying to work and fix what had happened. But it doesn't seem to be working. He does everything to show his love but it doesn't seem to be healing the wound, only covering up. The pain still exists. Finally, with humble heart and responsibility taken, the worlds greatest speech that can be given comes, "I'm sorry." Magically, the wound heals, the scar is gone, and happiness and love thrive. We cannot work our way to heaven. Repentance is a principal that if we learn, will heal all wounds in this life. The Savior died
so we can be healed from sin in this life and heal relationships. His Atonement is Infinite. There are so many examples to use but the gospel is truly designed to bless your life and is practiced within families. I encourage all to seriously study the savior and seek to be as he was, it will change you. But if you don't, your life will simply
stay the same and will not have such light in it as it could with the Light of the world at the for front.

Dallas Daze

So this week was super weird, we were tracting and is guy pulls up in his driveway as we were walking out. We say hello and he looks at us and turns to his dog and says, "sick em!" And the dogs bounds over to us and we kinda jump but it was the lickiest loving dog ever in the world. We look back at the guy laughing and he Laughs too and then
says I got ya didn't I boys! And then turns around and goes inside without another he led it up as if he was gonna let us talk to him but nope, just turns around after such and leaves. Super weird.

Well I hope everyone has a great week!
Love y'all!
Elder Hiatt