Greetings from Battle Creek Michigan!!!!
It is a small town which is best known as the home of Kellogs! Safe to say that I have never had so much cereal in my life!! My faith in Global warming is decreasing, considering their is 5 feet of snow on the ground and Im just getting used to the idea that being cold is just normal! There is a lot of poverty here, and its almost painful to see the effect it has on these people. It has made a lot of people here go somewhat crazy. As we knock on doors, it is always a surprise of who answers. We have had a couple doors slammed in our face which is awesome, but all in all, door knocking has gotten us NOWHERE!!!!
My companion is Elder Yates! Hes super fun and goofy, and is either singing, working out, or studying which I love!!!! He is a really great missionary and I am learning a lot from him!
The first few days have been really tough for me. We have no solid investigators, so we have resorted to finding. A LOT! I was getting really frustrated and upset. Honestly, it was all I could do to keep from crying at night because it just felt like we were getting nowhere. I kept reading Dad's letters and notes to me and that has really helped me to stay strong. On saturday during comp study, we decided it was time to find a new approach in finding solid investigators, the members! We decided that we need to start visiting more less actives and use them as a finding tool, because as much fun as door knocking is, it is really ineffective. I know now that that is the answer, because an area 70 came to church yesterday and lovingly laid into the ward council about being member missionaries. He spoke on the Power of the Book of Mormon in sacrament, and the High council speaker said, "Something amazing is about to happen," in his talk, and that Hit me. Something amazing is going to happen in this ward. I can just feel it. We are beggining to help the members make family mission plans, and we can see their excitement growing. I am so thankful to have come from a family of missionaries, because I am always telling of our experiences with missionary work. I often talk about Kelsey, Nikki, and Destiny as proof that member missionaries get the most work done!!
Another thing getting beaten into me is the Book of Mormon. SO MANY people have emphasized including the Book of Mormon in every aspect of the work, including the Holy Ghost. I have been reading it again since I got here, marking everytime it references Jesus Christ, and in the first 12 chapters, I counted 249 mentions of him. The Book of Mormon testifies of Christ more powerfully than any other book. The feelings and impressions I have been getting while reading have been life changing, and it is hard to put it down. When I read, all my doubts, frustrations, and sorrows are gone. I become filled with love for these people here, and my testimony is strengthened. I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I know that this is the Lord's work and not my own. That is the secret to happiness in missionary work. The moment you focus on the Lord, and on the people, it becomes the most fun thing you have ever done. When I serve, I dont feel the cold or the frustration. I dont see these people as different, I see them as brothers and sisters. This is the hardest thing I have ever had to do, but somehow I am just happy. I cant wait to get back out there to find those that the lord has prepared!!
PICTURES OF ELDER JOSEPH WHEAT
ON ARRIVAL AT THE LANSING MICHIGAN AIRPORT 12 FEB 2014
Elder Anderson, Elder Gifford, Elder Nicholls, Elder Jackson, Elder Bertilson, Elder Wheat, Elder Elmer, Sister Jensen, Sister Rogers, Elder Fairbanks, Elder Giar, Sister Peterson, Elder Marley, Sister Tate, Elder Blatter, Elder Patterson, Sister Hess; President Hess
WITH PRESIDENT AND SISTER HESS
WITH HIS NEW TRAINER, ELDER YATES
TRANSFER GROUP IN THE CULTURAL HALL WITH TRAINERS
Front: Sister Jensen, Sister Rogers, Sister Tate, Sister Peterson, Elder Blatter, Elder Nicholls, Elder Anderson, Sister Hess, President Hess, Elder Marley, Elder Jackson, Elder Wheat, Elder Giar, Elder Gifford, Elder Marley, Elder Fairbanks
Back: Sister Anderton, Sister Mortensen, Sister Brems, Sister Anson, Sister KSmith, Sister Fulmer, Sister Holt, Elder Todd, Elder Jeppson, Elder RTaylor, Elder Bertilson, Elder Patterson, Elder Rhodes, Elder Gledhill, Elder Yates, Elder Chidester, Elder Oldroyd, Elder Kennedy, Elder Aitken, Elder Jacobsen