Tuesday, July 29, 2014

"This is my day!"

What's up Mama,
I am doing pretty good. The weather is still hot and dry. It's back up to the 100s now, which isn't very bad once you get used to it. The 80s were nice a couple days ago though. I wish it would stay like that, but oh well. 
I'm glad that you guys were able to have some fun on your camping trip. That would have been fun to go fishing and all that stuff. We will have to go when I get home. Fishing is the best haha. That sucks that you fell. But it's good that you were okay mostly. So only your hand was hurt? That's pretty good and yea it probably could have been worse. It is good that it wasn't. Have you ever broken any bones? I think you have a streak going of no broken bones, right? You don't want to go ending that good streak!
The fires have caused some evacuations, but I don't really know much about it. I know that they asked for volunteers to help clean up, but only half the mission is helping clean up. Since I am in the southern part, I don't get to help. It would have been cool to go up there and help out. I think the situation is getting better up there.

It is funny that Jeff can impersonate people. Elder C is pretty good at that too, I have noticed. He can copy basically anyone's laugh. We have fun, so that has been good. 

I bet Elder Dan's talk was really good. I can't even imagine him being any nicer haha. He wouldn't hurt a fly before it seemed and now he's nicer? haha. Wow. 19 comps though? That is crazy. He was ET a lot,  because there are only 17 transfers in a mission. I would imagine his Pres. really wanted him to work with all the tough missionaries because he is so patient. He's a good guy.

I am doing pretty good right now as for needing anything. Did you happen to find my SD card yet?

Mom: Hi Son!
Yeah, so only my hand was hurt mostly. I have a few bruises on my right side here and there, so somehow I landed mostly on my right, with my hand getting the worst of it. It’s all green and blue today and hurts pretty good but Advil helps with that.
Too bad you don’t get to help with the fire evacuations, that would be some good service.
Yes, Dan’s talk was really amazing. One of the best I’ve heard. He actually reminds me of you and the way you have been talking about your mission. It was good.
I have not seen that SD card! I don’t have any idea what happened to it....I really thought I sent it back to you in the package before your 4th of July package. 
Elder Sedlacek: Tell Sarah happy birthday for me since I forgot to tell her, and guess what? 1 year from today I will be home! Crazy, huh?  I am sure it will go by sooo fast. This past year has and the last one I have heard goes even faster. I don't count up anymore haha. I count down. How crazy is that?
I know, I was thinking the same thing! People will start asking me how much time you have left instead of how long you’ve been gone. That’s weird.
Elder Sedlacek: 
I love to be serving a mission. It is one of the greatest things I have done in my life. It has strengthened my testimony of the Book of Mormon so much. I love to read it, even if it is a chapter in my days. Recently, I read about the sons of Mosiah and their experience of getting their mission call and going to teach the Lamanites. Sometimes I can really relate to them. Alma really had to put up with a ton of crap, and he stayed strong in the gospel. I really want to become more like Alma and the sons of Helaman. 
I know Joseph Smith is a prophet.
President Monson is a prophet of God and by heeding his counsel we will be able to make it back to God. I love the gospel! It changes lives! Like Dan said too, This is my day!

Email to Dad
Yo Dad,
Sounds like you had a good week. I figured you guys would since you were going camping. I had a pretty good week as well. We found 2 new investigators, and one of them is on date for baptism on the 23rd of August! It was an awesome lesson. His name is Greg and we found him while Elder R was still here, but this week we were able to meet with him. He mentioned that he wants to be baptized, and before the lesson he made sure to read some of the Book of Mormon. He read 3rd Nephi 11 and he told us that it's a gem in his eyes. He REALLY liked it. He even came to church yesterday and really liked that too.
The other investigator we had was one I think I told you about last week. Her name is Lilly and she was a referral from Elder C that he brought from his last area. We really weren't able to have much of a lesson with her because she was rushing out the door, but we were able to set up our purpose of us being there so that was good.

We also had a cool finding story this week. I had the thought to try by a LA apartment that I didn't know, so we went and knocked on the door and a lady answered. We asked if the member lived there and she said no, and she had just moved in a couple days before. Turns out she is interested in learning more about the church so we are going to start teaching her this week. Should be awesome! It was great to have some success this week. It was a very nice to have after a long time of tough stuff.

I bet the camping trip was fun. That is awesome that Jared was able to catch a big fish. I remember doing that with him when we went up there a couple years ago. Mom said you guys didn't get the site you wanted though? Why was that? That camping site is fun for fishing though. I want to go fishing so bad haha. That sounds super fun right now. One year from now I will go haha. It's funny you say it was dusty up there. Here it's basically a giant sand box. It's back to being pretty hot again, to which I was hoping was gone but it's not too bad. I just have to drink tons of water.

I bet you're doing good in your calling. You are like me though. I hate paperwork, which is the worst part of missionary work I think haha. It has to be done though, so I just get over it haha.

It is crazy that college football starts up again in like 30 days! That off season just flew by for me haha. You will have to keep me updated with all the Utah teams like usual. When does the NFL start up?

Well, I hope you have a great week Dad. Good luck with all the catch up at work. You're probably going to be tired after all the catch up haha. Thank you for all the sacrifice you deal with to keep me out on a mission. I love serving the Lord. It really is so rewarding for everyone. The gospel is awesome! I love it! Love you guys!
-Elder Jake Sedlacek

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

I am grateful to be serving as a missionary for Jesus Christ

How's it going Mama,
This past week was pretty good. Transfer day was the really hot day where it was 110 and we were on the black pavement wearing suit coats. Let's just say it was super hot haha. Transfers were good. I am with Elder Christopherson now. 

That is crazy that Sarah is 15 now. She is getting so old haha. Are you going to take her to get her learner's??? Libby is 10 too. That is crazy! I bet the party was fun and geting to hear Jim's and Dave's stories. There are some fun mission stories I have had, so it will be fun to tell them later on.

Libby is so funny too, with her story of going on a hike with Nicole and Jeff. She is so cute sometimes haha. I bet she had lots of fun hanging out with her bro-in-law. When I get home Libby and I will have to go have some fun like that.

That sucks about the Suburban fuel pump going out again. That has gone out so much it seems! It is about time that GM would put a warranty on it.

Mom: Yo Son! It's good to hear from you! I'm glad you are doing okay in the heat. I got my brace and it works great.

Elder Sed: That's great Mama. Did it come today? Can you walk and do everything without the pain you had? It looks similar to the one I had. Is it hard to get used to?

Mom: Yes, I can walk and do everything with no pain. It's different from the brace you had because it pushes against the outside of the knee joint and causes the inside to open up so the bones don't rub together, so that took a little getting used to. 

Elder Sed: I am glad it is working out for you Mama! I love getting to email. I have to go now. I am grateful to be serving as a missionary for Jesus Christ. I am grateful for the gospel and it truly does bless my life in every aspect. I know that as we stay strong in the gospel and continue in the little things that great things will be given to us. I love you guys so much!
Have an awesome week!

What's up Dad,
Sounds like you had a good week. I am doing pretty good, but this week was pretty slow. I have a new companion, Elder Christopherson. I've known him since the MTC. Our investigators are doing good, but we had no lessons with any of them this week. They were all busy with other stuff so we taught a lot of Recent Convert/Less Active lessons. We did find a new potential investigator named Lilly. She had been to a baptism for her aunt, and when she opened the door to us all she said was "I really like coffee." It was kinda funny, but she does want to meet and figure out if the church is something she wants. It will be super cool to start teaching her. She seemed pretty awesome. 

 The other highlight of the week was transfers, which was really hot, but I told mom about that. It was funny because one of the mission presidency came up to me and seriously thought I was a greenie and had to go back inside the church with the rest of the greenies. He finally realized I'm not a greenie haha. It was kinda funny though. I guess I look young or something. Sister Jane W came up to the mission this transfer, so that was weird to see her there.  I also talked to President Ware a little more since transfers and he suggested that I do something that I really liked. It really applies to parenting as well, but that is awhile off for me haha. He suggested using the commitment pattern with my comp. 

Sounds like you had a usual Saturday with all the yard work. That would be kinda fun to do right now. At least for the first week I'm home, then it will go back to being a chore haha. Sounds like lots of work! 

I did get your letter in the mail last Monday. I liked the announcement on the technology stuff. It will be super cool to get that stuff eventually. It will be interesting to ask President Ware about it. I would love to work with it. It's going to be awesome for teaching.

The weather has been pretty good the past week. It was 95 and I actually felt a little cold! It's funny how your body gets used to the temp after a while.

Libby and Sarah are getting old and I can't believe it for either one of them. It's crazy! Time goes fast doesn't it? 

Thanks for all that you do for me Dad. You are a great example to me of doing my best at everything I do, that is the reason I want to be as obedient as I can. I know HF will bless me and all of you as I do. Love you all! Have a great week!
-Elder Sedlacek

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

"Bionic Mama" and thoughts on grace and mercy

Took me a few times before I saw the flower tucked in his ear. haha!

Elder Sed and Elder R in a pretty awesome pose!

The Zone at the Columbia River temple. Elder Sed is third from the left. He looks so good! 

What's up Mama,
Sounds like you had a good week. This week has been pretty hot. It's basically going to stay above 100 for the highs for a while here haha. The heat isn't too bad though. It just makes me super tired in the middle of the afternoon. Speaking of, transfers are this week and I am staying and am going to be serving with Elder Christofferson. He's the Elder who me met his mom in the distribution center, who's from Bountiful and was going to the same mission as me. Remember that? Well, it should be pretty fun. I just really hope he's a good worker. That will be the absolute best if he is.

So you lost the SD card but then found it again haha. At least you found it haha.

I am sure Elder J would love to see you guys at his homecoming. He said he will put it on Facebook once he gets home tomorrow. It's so crazy that he is going home tomorrow! Seems like yesterday he wasn't even at 18 months yet. Time goes super fast haha.

I bet it was super cool for Syd & Tyler to go through the temple together. So they both took out their endowment then? 

A temple painting will be a super cool wedding gift for Nicole & Jeff. I love the Bountiful temple. It's so pretty. Cool idea for a gift.

I already knew how to pronounce Nephi in Spanish (haha) from Sunnyside. I know how to pronounce a couple more things too. I bet I would be able to understand Jeff when I get home. I can kinda understand some Spanish but I cannot speak it all, which kinda sucks haha. I want to learn it, though. He will have to teach me when I get back.

So Dad is also a wedding decorator haha. He is a man of many talents. He just might have a side job if he does a really good job. How did he design all that? That sounds really complicated to me. Dad is a smart man I guess!

So you obviously have been visiting Dr. R for your knee lately. Is your knee pretty bad right now? That is good that you are getting a brace thing for your knee. That would be sweet if it works out for you. I will be praying for you that it will be a huge help for you. Can't have my Mama not walking! haha. That would suck. So is it one that you will wear all the time?

Mom: Son! I can’t believe this transfer is over already! I hadn’t even thought about transfers and didn’t realize they were this week. That will be super fun to have Elder Christofferson. 
The card was sitting by the computer this whole time and I just forgot that I had never sent it back. Sorry!
Okay, hopefully we can make Elder J’s homecoming. We’d really like to. Yeah, Sydnie and Tyler took out their endowments. I haven’t gotten my new brace yet, hopefully the rep calls soon. I will try to wear it all the time, but certainly when I want to go walking or hiking, and I need it for camping. I will definitely need it the day of the wedding or my knee would be killing me by afternoon!

Elder Sed: I really hope you get your brace then if it will help you that much. You will almost have a bionic leg haha.

Mom: I just can’t get over that it’s been 6 weeks! And it’s crazy that we met Elder C’s mom, and now he’s gonna be your comp!
Yep, bionic Mama. That’s me. haha

Elder Sed: Yep, this transfer went by super fast. I only have like 9 more too. Crazy crazy crazy!
You are bionic Mama haha. You will have to video yourself doing parkour or something like that when you get your brace.
Mom: Parkour? Me??? Hahahahaha!!!! That one made me laugh out loud! 

Elder Sed: Yea, you, parkour with your bionic leg. You don't see it happening? haha

Mom: Um, I see myself walking and hiking in comfort. That’s about it haha.

Elder Sed: Well I guess that's acceptable still in my opinion. It won't get a million hits on YouTube, but hey. It's still good haha.

What's up Dad,
Sounds like you had a good week too, just like mom did. My week was pretty good, but boy was it hot haha. It really is like being a pioneer because I walk around all day in the heat. It's usually pretty hard once it hits 3-4pm. That's the hardest time. I am doing pretty good though. I am making sure that I am drinking lots of water. I don't want to get dehydrated at all. That is no fun.

The teaching pool we have is going well. We got dropped by F this week but we picked up a new investigator named C. She is pretty cool and somewhat interested in learning more about the gospel. She has some roommates in her apartment and I don't think they like us very much so pray for her to keep up the interest even though her friends might not want her to. The rest of the teaching pool is basically the same. We weren't able to meet with a lot of people this week. Seemed like lots of people are out of town. We are still working on going around to the members and teaching them the restoration. I really really really really really really really want this area to be successful. The members just need to realize that missionary work is fun and easy to do. I'm trying my best every day to get it to the point I want it. President Ware said it could be 6-8 weeks before any real changes start to happen. That's a lot of waiting haha. HF must really want me to learn some patience and diligence!

My studies have been pretty good this week. I realized that I had been pretty prideful in the heat and because of the weather. I was thinking about me me me and no body else really. I changed that as soon as I realized, and am praying for ways each day to look for the well being of others and for little service opportunities. I studied a lot on justice and mercy along with grace and mercy of the savior.  I have been dealing pretty justly with the members and not really being merciful to their situation. I am going to try my best to be more merciful to everyone. I also realized something cool about grace and mercy. Grace from the Savior isn't grace if we earned it. Mercy also isn't mercy if we deserve it. None of God's children, without the grace and mercy of the Savior, would be able to return to him. I am super grateful for the atonement. I have seen the miracles that come from applying it in our lives. It truly is amazing. I am sooooooo grateful again for the gospel of Jesus Christ and the atonement.

Elder J goes home tomorrow. Crazy! I can't believe it I know that. Can't imagine what he is feeling like. He would love to see you guys is what he has said. Just watch for it on Facebook.

Don't worry about me not writing down my experiences. I've got that covered haha. I would say my journal is pretty good. I usually will try to write down the cool stuff or what I learned during the day in my daily journal entry. I know if I didn't write them down I would forget them so I try my best to make the entries good ones haha.

I really hope you guys have a great week. I haven't gotten your letter yet so maybe I will today. Thanks for sending one. I am sorry for not being the best letter writer. You guys are awesome though. Have an awesome week! I love being a missionary!
love ya,
-Elder Sedlacek



Monday, July 7, 2014

I want to edify and strengthen all the people I come in contact with

What's up Mama,

Sounds like it was a fun rest of the week for you guys haha. You do seem to be the designated "tell me all about home for the week"  person haha. I like it though. I did get to use some of the 4th of July stuff you sent. I like the glasses so I have some pics in them. Speaking of pictures, do you have my other SD card that I sent home Father's Day? I can't find the other one, so I am assuming that it's home with you guys.
Is the internet still out at home? That is super stupid if it is.

Thanks for fasting for me. 

I like the picture of the water fight. I bet that was really fun. Did you and Dad do it as well?

So its been hot in Utah just like here, it sounds like. The heat isn't that bad once you get used to it. It's still pretty tiring so I know how you guys felt haha.

I am glad that you were able to use some of the stuff I said in your testimony. Hopefully I say things that touch everyone's heart. I try to,  at least. haha. I want to edify and strengthen all the people I come in contact with, so that is something I pray for every morning. To touch the hearts of the people I meet.

I hope the email works good today. It's super fun being able to email back and forth.

What's this annoucement that the church supposedly put out that every missionary will have to get an iPad mini? There were a couple members talking about it yesterday.

Mama: Yes, the missionaries in many missions will be getting special iPad minis. You buy it and can keep it when you go home. I think Dad knows more details on it than I do.

The internet is out at home still. Good thing I have my phone!

Yes, the weekend and holiday were super fun.

Elder Sed: So it's not all the missions then? Those would help soooo much in teaching and stuff like that. I hope the WKM gets them. That is dumb that the internet is out. Are the kids going crazy without it haha?

Mama: I think it is most missions, probably yours too. It was something like 50k of the missionaries that will?I'd bet you will. Yeah, the kids aren't liking no internet! It's supposed to be back by 5:30pm. Hopefully sooner. 

Elder Sedlacek: Well I am going to go now Mama. It was good to get to email today. Glad that it worked out despite all the internet poop going on. 
I hope you guys have a great week!
Don't forget too to send me my SD card soon and I can send the one I have back that has some new pics on it.
Love you all!
-Elder Sedlacek

What's up Dad,
I bet the 4th was super fun for you guys. It was pretty fun here. We had some souped up pop-its that popped really loud, almost like a fire cracker, and we threw those around and played catch with a football in the members' back yard where we live. It was fun. It was really just a fun, relaxing evening since we had to be in at 6pm.

We had a good talk with our  Bishop, and he changed around the agenda and let us talk first yesterday so that was awesome! That was the first time since I have been in this ward that it was like that, so it was a super nice change.

There wasn't very much exciting in the past couple days since Wednesday. Our teaching pool is still basically the same as it was on Wednesday. We did find a new investigator named J. He was out weeding in his yard, so we talked to him for a little bit, and then Elder R and I just sat down and started weeding with him. We ended up having a really good discussion, and J even committed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. It was awesome. Other than that, our investigators are the same. Keep praying for all of them and it will help them.

Thanks for the sports updates. It's fun to find out the little bits of info you tell me. Lebron is soooo greeedy. I think it would be soooo funny if nobody picked him up, but that will not happen. Still, it would be funny.

Haha Duke is funny. I remember playing with him like that. It's kinda funny that up here there is a family that has a black lab that is named Duke. They are kinda alike too, from what I remember about Duke haha.

I really do think my mission is really strengthening me as well. It has been awesome to be able to serve my mission so far. I love the things that I have learned and being able to think back on all the awesome experiences I have had. I just hope to be able to learn from my mission everyday for the rest of my life. I want it to be that life-changing experience like it has been so far. Missions are awesome and I love the gospel and being able to share it everyday with everyone I meet. Thanks for all that you do for me Dad. You're awesome!

Is my dirt bike still up and running?
I also have heard that there was an announcement made on the technology for missionaries. What's the details on that. There were some members up here talking about it yesterday and it sounds awesome! 
Have a great week!!!!! Love ya!
-Elder Sedlacek

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Being on a mission is where I want to be

What's up Mama,
It sounds like your week was really fun. Libby told me about the zoo pass that you guys got and that is fun. I really loved the package and everything in it. Perfect job Mama! It even got here last Saturday so it was really fast too.

I think it's funny that the time is going by so fast haha. When you break it down like that Mama, it's going to seem like a couple months and I will be home. Time is weird! Just so you know, being on a mission is where I want to be too.

I bet it was fun, too, to sit with Nicole and Jeff by the fire bowl and talk. 
The temple was amazing today. And the sealing was AMAZING too. It was sooooooooooo coool and nothing like I was expecting, but I definately want to be sealed in the temple. I think it would be so cool to have Pres. Johnson do the sealing too. It was seriously the longest ever that I remember feeling that wave of the spirit. It was the whole time Pres. Johnson (he did the sealing) was talking. It was also super fun to see some of the members from Sunnyside. That is nice that the D family wrote on my wall, too. They are a good family so I am sure they will be baptized sometime. They have a seed planted at least.

I bet sacrament meeting was really good but that is super surprising that there was no returned missionaries available to talk. They won't have that problem pretty soon haha. Lots of them coming home.

Well this week was pretty good. How have the family been doing?

What's up Dad,
This week was pretty good, but really slow as well. It's starting to get really hot so that has been fun to deal with haha.  Member trust is also one thing we are going to start building more of.  

As far as cool experiences go, this week we had interviews with President Ware and that was really, really good. He is such a good example for me. He always has some bit of good advice for me to hear. He told me to just keep working on the members and building trust and the work will improve. On Thursday we ran into a guy named Greg who had gotten a Book of Mormon back in 2003, and he has been picking it up once in a while ever since. He told us pretty detailed descriptions of what he had read a week ago, and he was able to perfectly tell the story of Teancum. Pretty dang cool. I don't think I would be able to do that--as in explain in detail what I read a week ago. Well anyway, we asked him if we could meet with him sometime and he didn't want to give us any info but said he would show up to church sometime. I am really hoping he comes while I am still here. 

As far as the teaching pool it's still pretty much the same. FB said he will be baptized when he gets an answer that the Book of Mormon is true, but he does feel like God wants him to read it so that was cool to hear about. I don't know if I told you about S yet, but he is a pretty cool investigator. He's from Canada and plays hockey. He's just barely graduated from college and is pretty interested in learning more. F didn't come to church because he was busy with work and has been all this past week, so I hope we can meet with him this week. Those are our progressing investigators  right at the moment. We are working every day to find more with the members.

Holy crap, do we have fruit up here haha! Talk about cherries and raspberries and strawberries. Pretty  much anything we want we've got haha. Don't even worry about sending fruit. The members got that covered, Dad haha. It sounds good that you guys have a lot of fruit too.

It is awsome work is going good for ya. Keep up the good work, Papa. I bet it's fun to work for the church and be able to participate in all that. It would be cool.

I did get the package like I told mom. Thanks for sending it and the letter inside it too.

On the journal, it will work for a study journal, but today I went and bought one that is the same style and size as my other one. But thanks for sending that, too. I will put it to some good use.

The temple was awesome today. 

Well I hope you guys have an awesome week. You guys are a great example to me. Every one of you, too. I love you guys and am so happy to be serving a mission. I love the gospel!!!
-Elder Sedlacek