Monday, December 29, 2014

Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone! This week has been a great week. It has been a lot different as far as missionary work goes, because of the Christmas season but it was a good different. We did a lot of caroling with the district here in SLO and that was a lot of fun. We also caroled with some missionaries up in Atascadero. We were also able to get in contact with a less-active, recent convert. He got baptized back in February and has strayed from the path since then. His name is Mason and we tried to contact him early on in the week, and when we talked with him he told us now wasn't a good time. We asked when would be a good time and he said Saturdays are better and shut the door. Turns out on Saturday he called us and asked if we were coming over today. We went over and had a great lesson with him. He suffers from severe anxiety and has really struggled, but wants the spirit back in his life. He is starting to make his way back :). We also taught a brief lesson to Rhianea who told us she has met with missionaries before. We invited her to church and she came! She found the 2 other YSA girls to make friends with right off the bat, so that was great, and I think she had a good time. We hope to start teaching her this week to see where she is at, and I think she will make for a great investigator. I am also looking forward to having a ward to go to since we have just gone to the family ward the last 2 weeks. I also got to talk to you, my family, so that is always a bonus. We opened our Christmas presents Christmas morning, and that is always fun. Thank you everyone who sent me something. Thank you Grandma spaulding for the apron I feel like and can cook so much better now. You all are great and you will hear from me again next year.
Elder Hamson

Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Hello everyone everything is going great here in SLO. First, congratulations to BYU womens volleyball team for the best season ever, and for being the 2nd best team in THE NATION! Also thank you Trina, Gary, JJ and Ashlyn for the package. 
Transfers were a little crazy in the rain, but overall it all worked out and most of the luggage stayed dry. We ended up driving a lot on Tuesday, and it was a long day. We woke up at 4:30and went to bed at 10:30 with non-stop craziness inbetween. I am glad its over. This area has been a little different her for the last week or so. All of the college students have left for home including 90% of our ward, so we went to church in SLO 2nd ward and have been figuring out who is still here. There is still a lot of work to do and we have been able to find a couple new investigators, and teach a bunch of people. YSA age people seem so be a little more willing to talk, but as far as keeping commitments go you never really know until you follow up with them. It has been a great opportunity to get to know our area a whole lot better. 
Elder Kanenwisher is great, I feel bad that he won't meet the ward for a while, but I a grateful to have him as a companion. He is a hard worker and just fearless. I really admire him, and we have only gotten along better and better every day. I am really excited for what this transfer holds with Elder Kanenwisher. 
We had a really cool opportunity to help a lady move out this week and that was a lot of fun. We brought a member with us and the lady was asking him all of the questions about the church, and normally he is pretty quiet but he got to answer them all and told her about what we do, and it turned into a great restoration lesson. She now has a Book of Mormon and we cleared up some misconceptions, so she said she would read it, and pray to find out for herself. She moved to Pismo and is in contact with the missionaries down there. This all started a couple years ago when missionaries were there to help her move in and she kept the number they left for two years and called us up last week. Overall it was a great experience.
You are all great I love you and have a merry Christmas!
Elder Hamson

Monday, December 15, 2014

Go Cougars!

I think I forgot to say last week, but this week is transfers! Elder Jackson is headed to Simi valley, and my new companion will be Elder Kanenwisher as of tomorrow. He hasn't been a zone leader before. so that means I'm the Sr. companion now. It will be interesting, because I only sort of know what I am doing. Hana, one of our investigators, went home for Christmas break and got baptized in her home town Oakdale, CA. We were kinda bummed that we couldn't be there, but she was ready and we taught her all the lessons, and we can't wait to hear the full report when she gets back in January. Helen who just got baptized is as solid as ever. Bella who got baptized a month ago got her patriarchal blessing and gave a talk at church, so she is progressing very quickly. Jesse is doing great as well. We are really excited for them all. A lot of people are going home for Christmas, and our whole ward is pretty much dissolving until next year. I guess we'll have to find some locals to teach until they all get back. Thank you all for the support, also thank you to 14th ward for the package I thoroughly enjoyed it. The pictures are of Helen's baptism, a hike we went on, and our living Christmas tree. GO BYU!!!
Elder Hamson

Monday, December 8, 2014

Wild Wednesday

Hello everyone, this week has been an intense week. We started off with a hike on Monday afternoon and that was fantastic. Then on Tuesday I went to my first real MLC, the last one was different. It was great to see old companions, like Elder Atkin and Elder Moser there. It was a great meeting and we talked about some of the rules in the mission. One big change that happened is that we are now allowed to play sports with members and non-members. It is a very foreign concept for me since it has been against the rules my whole mission, but it can definitely be a great missionary tool. After that we went on an exchange with the assistants, which was awesome. Elder Jackson stayed in Ventura while I drove back up to SLO with Elder Lee and Elder Wallace. I have never really gotten to serve around Elder Lee, but we were on the PG basketball team together, so it was great to be able to catch up with him on the 2.5hr drive back. He went to work with the district leader up in Paso Robles while I stayed and worked with Elder Wallace. Elder Wallace and I had a great exchange and all of our appointments had fallen on Wednesday, so we taught quite a few lessons. We taught Helen first and she was having a bad morning just frustrated with school and freaking out about her baptism on Saturday, but she said she prayed and felt peace so she was ok. This was all before out lesson with her. That was great to hear, and we reviewed Joseph Smith and his whole story and then watched He is the GIft. We then taught Bella and Jesse who are both recent converts who are doing great in their callings and just everything. We then had a short lesson with Sam (who we met last Sunday) that went really well. After that we taught Harmony who is a returning less active. Usually these lessons are a little more spread out, but with MLC it pushed it all to Wednesday. It was just a great day and I loved serving with and learning from Elder Wallace. Elder Jackson drove up that night and the assistants went off to their next exchange in the next zone down. They slowly made their way down the mission on a series of 4 back to back exchanges. On Thursday we planned for our zone meeting on Friday where we present basically everything from MLC in a condensed 1.5 hrs. We also planned for Helen's baptism on Saturday, and taught her again Thursday night. Friday we had our zone meeting and that went well, we showed everyone He is the Gift and a little powerpoint about it. Everyone is getting very excited about Christmas and this new initiative from the church. Then on Saturday Helen got Baptized! It all went very smoothly except for one thing. We filled up the font before the baptism, and we felt the water to see how warm it was and it was cold. we couldn't figure out why, because the hot water was on full blast there should be some warmth. After getting a mop and bucket to reach the faucet and feel the water coming out we decided the hot water is broken. They didn't have any pots and pans in the kitchen to boil some water for them so she just got baptized in cold water. Afterwards she told us it wasn't that cold, so she still had a good experience which was awesome. I think she was filled with the spirit or something because that water was straight up cold. Also a bunch of her non-member friends came and they enjoyed it. We talked with them a little bit and they definitely felt the spirit, they don't know it yet but they did. Overall it was a great baptismal service and a great way to finish the week with her confirmation the next day. 
Thank you all and Have a merry Christmas. Also share the gift with your friends #share the gift.
Elder Hamson

Monday, December 1, 2014

Where has the Lord Blessed You?

I don't think things are going to slow down anytime soon. I have been as busy as ever and I absolutely love being a missionary. The Lord has blessed me so much I can't believe it sometimes. We started off this week with an exchange on Tuesday with Elder Robertson and Elder Trujillo. They are Spanish speaking missionaries, so that made things more interesting. I went with Elder Trujillo in his area (Morro Bay) and I had a great time. I learned a little bit of Spanish, but mostly it was all him as far as teaching goes. Probably one of the more interesting exchanges I went on, but it went really well. Then we had Thanksgiving dinner at a member of the bishopric's house and that was great. On Saturday we went on another Exchange except this time I stayed in SLO while Elder Jackson went up to Templeton. It was a good exchange with Elder Smoot and they are english speaking, so that wasn't the problem. I just tried really hard not to get lost, because we have a large area and I don't have it down that well yet. Thank goodness for my GPS. My favorite day this week though was by far Sunday. We went to church and there was like 20 of us there, because everyone is out of town with their families. After church we had a lesson with Helen who is really excited about her baptism this Saturday. We are planning that all out and it should be a really great experience for everyone. Then later that evening we had one of the best lessons I have had in a long time. We got in contact with Olivia who went LA when she was 12 and set up an appointment for Sunday night, and she brought her non-member boyfriend Sam. We brought Matt from the ward with us and it was a great lesson. It was about the restoration and when we were talking about the Spirit Sam told us that he has gotten feelings that before, but he is really feeling it right now. The lesson was completely led by the spirit, and you can't deny the spirit that was there. I wish I could describe this lesson better, because there were so many little things that fell into place to make it happen. We asked Sam if he would be baptized if he knew the Book of Mormon was true, and he said yes. They were so prepared and I still cannot believe how blessed I have been. This is truly the Lords work, and not just some hip thing the kids day these days. I would encourage you all to look for where the Lord has blessed you in your life, it's a very humble experience. Thank you all for your support. You are in my prayers, and I love you all.
Elder Hamson