Elder Edwards

Elder Edwards

Monday, September 28, 2015

Weekly Letter -- Elder Adam Edwards in Nantes, France 28 Sept. 2015

This is the father and son tie we chose today, the one on my shoulder.
Whoo go Edwards and Walton

It is so GREEN thisis a park right by the train station

Hello my dear, beloved family and friends! 

I have a lot to tell you about this week so I'll just get started!! I'll number them so it's easier for us all to keep track of. 

1. Captain Moroni--wow. So I have been reading pretty much all of the war chapters in the Book of mormon this past week, just the past few days reAlly, and boy, it is so cool!!! All right, first of all, Captain Moroni and Helaman are such bosses! So cool. I learned a lot recently about how I can be a strong, great man. I wanted to do some of that this past week, you know, learning how to be a great man with the example of great men from the scriptures, so there you go! Have loved learning lots about him, great times. Man and that story of the war in between about chapters 45 through 63 is just so intense! Boy you just see all these cool strategies and i just love it! Don't know why some people don't like the war chapters. I kind of have a warrior heart though so it's whatever. :). The Book of Mormon is great and it's true. It was so cool this week to just feel so compelled to read that a couple times. I just really couldn't put it down--man so great! You just get so into it, especially for those who can read it for their first time, please take the chance and read it! You,ll never be the same!

2. Testimony -- Well, I just wanted to share a story or verse in particular that I've read recently in study. It's in Helaman 3:29-30 and also Helaman 4. I challenge you all to reAd those two chapters. It is basically a call to all the people in the world, the truth that YOU CAN HAVE A TESTIMONY IF YOU WILL SEEK ONE. There may be many, many, many people who mock this Church, or who have left it--we learn a lot also from the chapters concerning Lehi's Dream, see 1 Nephi 8--but that does not mean we have to doubt or leave those testimonies behind. There are plenty of people who go against God in the world. I see that EVERY DAY in France. It isn't paradise over here. But I know something--that the people who will, who want to, will lay hold upon that Word if God, upon that rod of iron, and they will cleave to it and will not let it go. I testify that NO MATTER HOW HARD THE DAY SEEMS, no matter how cold or dark or bleak the situation may be, no matter how many people go against God and His work, there will always be a way through. We can always keep our covenants--in the end, you know, it's really what we DO with what we receive that counts, not so much what we receive. I mean yes, that counts too, but think about it:  
- I've received my Patriarchal Blessing, now what am I going to do about it? If you just receive it and never read it again (you might think that's crazy but I've met people like that), what makes you think that will bless your life or help you every day?! You're going to wake up one day in the spirit world and be like, "Oh, whoops, that would've been nice to apply." So do you see what I mean? It's what you do with it that counts. 
- Temple covenants and ordinances (this also applies to baptism and receiving the priesthood): you've made promises with God, you've told Him you'd do certain things, you're in this situation and you can't just forget about these sacred oaths and promises. But those things, the wearing of the garment, those things won't do you much good if you don't stay TRUE to them. There are people who stop wearing their garments and fall into inactivity every year--that stinks for them! Ask yourselves, everyone, "what has God given me, what promises have we made, and what can I do to live up to them?" 

I've found that, ultimately, for me at least, the best life is lived in taking your situation the way it is now, and making positive choices, taking action, and making the best of it. You will never find fulfillment in the living of past deeds, the crowns of bygone eras, if, in the end, you are not NOW willing to get your life in order and seek to act, live in the present, and make the best life you can out of the life God has given you. ACT. So, so important. I have seen so many people who are less-active and it's because they forgot this promise in Helaman 3 and 4. Please take a minute to read it, it's so amazing!!!

3. Repentance is real and powerful. We were able to share the lesson or message for the YSA activity we had on Wednesday night, and boy, so cool, check out Alma 36:12-13, 17-20 and 3 Nephi 11:8-10, 12-14. Realize that Christ calls to YOU too!!! This call to repentance, to come to Him, is unto ALL THE EARTH, and He will make good his promises. If we come to Christ in true repentance, without hypocrisy, on His own conditions, He will help us all and make it all right. Never give up hope, the Atonement of Jesus Christ is for everybody, and that means you, too. We were able to share our testimonies of Jesus Christ and His power ro redeem there, and it was awesome. I need to keep repenting, too, we all do. We won't be done repenting and persevering until Jesus is come again, even until we're like him!

4. Okay, now I'll tell you about Djenyce, our 11-year-old ami or investigator who has been learning about the gospel for quite a while--missionaries have gone to see him for at least a year, and i think much longer than that--but he's part of a slightly less-active family, they're great people, but they can't always make it to church and stuff, and his baptism has been delayed for three years so we've been receiving very specific instructions from the Lord on that to get it moved up to the 10th or the 17th of October, rather than the 31st. Boy, the Lord really wants that kid baptized. So we are going to try to get him baptized soon, the Lord needs to get this kid in the water, so this week we've spent a lot of efforts going forward with the details of that and just making it so that it could work sooner. His dad will be baptizing him so that will be great. We can testify that the Lord gives revelation to His missionaries, even if we are just his humble servants. There you go. May not always talk to as many people as I should or testify with as much power as I should, but I know that to be true. 

5. Zone Conference-- we had zone conference this past week and it was awesome. It was actually a lot on repentance so it was good. We talked about how if you've sinned and the guilt of that sin has left you, you feel no guilt from it, but you still remember it, sometimes the Lord does that so we don't hurt ourselves by repeating that sin again, so it's pretty cool. Zone Conference was awesome, saw a lot of people, weird that Elder Baldwin, my trainer, wasn't there. Anyways, there you go.

8. My desires for this week-- I really want to live in the moment, just take the life I have that God has given me, and you and Dad have given me, (thanks so much!!!), and just do the best with it that I can. It does no good to reflect too much on the past, so it's best just to move forward with the future, thanks for telling me about that lesson mom, it was awesome. I know that the Lord is willing to forgiven even sometimes when I,m reluctant to forgive myself. 

Even on the tram, with lots of bars to hold onto and lots of blue and green seats with lots of people to talk to, I can live in the moment and take a hold of each chance I have to be there to talk with someone. Cool stuff, huh? The Lord wants us to move on and take life and make it the best we can each day! i love that. It's better to be cold or hot, as the scriptures say, better to take action and be a fiery spirit on the Lord's side, been feeling like I'm a fiery spirit lately.

Our other amis are doing well, we have another referral or two to contact and then after that we're good! So we're almost done cleaning out all the referrals we,ve received online, ten total or so, in the last few years that haven't been taken care of yet. So yeah. The lord's work moves forward, it's not for me to doubt but to get the strongest testimony I can and then to move forward working with my whole soul. We're going to work on getting out to do contactng and door to door more, less time planning and stuff. Will be good. 

Okay, now I,m going to answer your auestions, Mom and dad!  
Principle in study--Captain moroni, that guy is a boss! Helaman too, that guy's awesomel loved the war chapters in the book of mormon, super cool. I like that idea of how to study the scriptures, that's cool! I just don't know if I have the resources to do it, don't really have a lot of cards and stuff like that. Great for your class though! Thanks for sharing that with me Mom!

Conferenece plans--well apparently lots of members who understand and speak English actually come with us to the English room too because it,s better to hear the direct English oration and also you can hear the peoples' real voices. So...I don't know if we can still bring lots of food? Haha I'm assuming yes... By the way how much money did Grandma B. Send? Maybe I can use a bit of that for some candy or something :) yeah don't worry we'll have fun at conference!

Zia still remembers me, whoa! I read that last week and was really surprised, that is so cool! So glad she still remembers me. If she forgets before I get home, oh well, I really appreciate Malia and Austin's efforts to help her remember though!

Dad is a great example of doing his duty, thanks Dad! Mom, don't be too hard on yourself, you're always doing great things. But way to go out and do your duty, great story, loved it. 

Love you, I need to run, but thank you so much for all you do, Mom and Dad. Still miss ya sometimes, it's good though and life is good. It's good to learn to be my own man and be independant. Thank you for financing this Mom and Dad. Love you so much. I know the gospel is true. In the name of Jesus christ, amen. 

Monday, September 21, 2015

Hello Mom and Dad! Weekly Update - September 21, 2015

Me and Elder Peterson, my ex-zone leader, he is now in his last transfer of his mission. Taken in Angers, the ville where he was serving. 

Me and my good buddy Elder Lau. Cool dude. 


The Catholic chapel (not technically a cathedral, not big enough O.O ) right next to our house! Literally a 3 to 4 minute walk away, we walk not too far from it every day going to and from the tram. 
(This is Adam receiving his 19th birthday package. Love the excited smile!) 

Elder Baldwin! Our last goodbye on last Transfer Day.

Hello Mom and Dad! God bless you! I hope you're doing ok. 

Thank you so much for all your love! I feel it, really do. It was good to hear about your lives and I enjoy hearing about the family party and efforts made on the family side. You're a great parent, Mom. God bless. 

I only have a couple minutes, so I'm going to be fast. Just five quick points to sum up the week: 
  1. Training with Elder Walton -- this is going well, we're working on becoming good friends this week! We've felt that I could have more respect for my bro, so I will be working on that, just respecting his time and his stuff and the way he does things. Always a great thing to do. We'll be working on our comp relationship and just having a great time! Elder Walton is such a great listener and responder to needs of investigators!! (makes it sound bad, we just want to let go of unnecessary politeness and coldness and be buds)
  2. Testimony and conversion -- have been learning lots about this. God bless you guys. It is hard sometimes but I'm trying to believe and be firm and be true to what God has given me. I bear testimony to my dying day that this gospel is true, sometimes I feel I should do a better job of living it, but working on it. Am reading BoM 6 pages a day and 3 New Testament. Working toward conversion. Conversion all the way. 
  3. Got to see the castle. Cool stuff! Haha you can look at all the pictures. 
  4. Will prepare to hear the words of our living prophets. I need to anchor myself fully to God and Jesus Christ by anchoring myself to the prophet, the apostles, their teachings, the scriptures, and my covenants I've made at baptism, and in the temple. Will be working, once again, on conversion. 
  5. We'll be seeing lots of people this week. 
Investigators: saw Ben and Gaël this week. Also Koffi. Djenice and his dad and brothers came to church!!!! YEESS. So good. Cool stuff. We now need to go. We'll be running by lots of peoples' houses this week, whether old amis or less actives, that type of thing. 

God bless you all, see you later, keep growing, read the Book of Mormon, I testify that as we grow and try to see the Lord's love in our lives every day, He helps us and our testimony of this restored gospel grows. We need to be anchored like anchors in the rock that rock climbers use. If we are anchored by our covenants and day-to-day actions and repentance, following the prophet, we will be ok. That is my testimony. I love you all so much. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen. 

I love this mission. I am here for Jesus Christ, for no one and for nothing else. God bless and I love you. I will do my best and work hard, exercise and giving energy. Great week to you all! See ya! Love you bye! 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Sept. 14 Weekly Update -- Birthday, Love of Christ, and Exchange Fun!

Hello my family, dear ones and loved ones!

I love you all and hope your weeks have been happy and bright, or that you've been able to feel a lot of the love of Christ this week. I sure have! :D 

I wrote down some things that I wanted to cover today, so I hope it will be more focused and structured than it normally is. :D 

Events from this Week
  1. Testimony boost. I wanted to feel a testimony boost because, well, sometimes in France you feel kind of down and discouraged, there are TONS of false philosophies and points of view that attack what is true here. There are tons. So it's important, as you might imagine, to come back to the Book of Mormon and be rooted to what is the anchor of our faith. So, the past few days, starting with Thursday or Friday maybe, I've been able to feel a great boost from reading the words of Mormon and Moroni in the end of the Book of Mormon, notably chapters 7 through 8 in Mormon and chapter 7 in Moroni. It is amazing how clearly and unmistakably these two prophets explain the truth of the gospel to us, as we read it 1600 years later. Cool, huh? It's amazing because it can be read with so much more simplicity and clearness than the letters of Paul, great and important though they may be. Just made my testimony stronger and reminds us that the Book of Mormon is simple and precious. :D
  2. Positive Music. Needless to say, this hasn't been a huge, notable event in my week, but actually, this morning, and today for P-Day, I've had the chance to listen to some great music, whether from EFY 2014 or 2015, or also the album "Redeemer" sent to me by Mom and Dad, and it really just has a positive effect on me. Cool stuff. I especially like one song from EFY 2012 that's entitled "Shine Bright," also "Apostles" in the album Redeemer, as well as some other great songs. When the Son of Man Comes Again is a great one in Redeemer, and there's also a great one about being united with Christ, number 3 in the EFY 2015 album. Cool stuff, you just feel uplifted. also had the chance, as you want me to tell you all, to play the piano for district meeting (I usually play for that lately) and our missionary activity (more on that later) for the ward yesterday! Cool stuff. Music has such power, to drive us to good and God or to, well, shameful acts. Watch what you listen to. 
  3. Missionary Experiences -- We had a GREAT ward return missionary activity where five of our return missionaries (all young, too, all these people came back within the last couple years, the last three or four months most of them), and each missionary had a few pictures or a slideshow on their mission and what they learned. I liked seeing all the pictures, just filled me with such joy, seeing all those things and all those moments on their missions. Reminded me just how joyful missions should be. So that's a good reminder not to let rules or perfectionism get in the way of having fun. we can be good, converted, and obedient without being Nazis. :D We can still have fun. Loved that. Also had a couple good experiences this week with a couple JA or young single adults in missionary work. They are such beasts! Grateful to some of the missionaries who preceded me because they really got the YSA people to work, teaching with us and stuff! Amazing too because all the RM brothers we have are so pumped to teach with us. We have a lesson in 15 minutes with a self-referral and one of the RMs, Michaël. We were also able to teach perhaps a new investigator, Stephane, with Michaël on Thursday, that went okay but Stephane talked a ton. But cool story, contacted us right by a big church and talked to us. Knows our story. Lots of people know stuff about us here in France. also, on my birthday, had a chance to do some contacting on the street with a great JA brother, Samuel, and that was good. French people are always good at nicely saying "au revoir" when people don't stop and listen, that's cool. We're working on member work here, so good stuff is happening. 
  4. LOVE of GOD -- CHARITY -- Love of God and family. Man, it is just amazing how much love I've felt this week. I just have so much to be grateful for. I think part of it started, Dad, when you asked me to be mindful of your love and Mom's love so I could wear it like a cloak and where it throughout the rest of my mission. Then I had a couple cool moments, notably one in the tram, when I was just staring off and thinking, and just felt so much love, thinking about how much God loves me. Read Moroni 7 or part of it this week, man just so much good stuff there. Am starting to more fully comprehend what it means to have charity, and why that chapter is important. I always understand it was important, but that love is important! We all have the right to feel that from parents and from Heavenly Parents! So please feel that and help everyone feel that around you this week. God will be with you as you do that. I can promise you it's worth it to work for this charity of Christ. Thank you for your marvelous amount of love, Christ, and also for yours, my dear beloved family! 
  5. Exchanges -- Wednesday and Thursday morning was an exchange with my Zone Leader Elder Congerton, hailing from Auckland, New Zealand! Cool kid, like him, we got along well. He's actuall an old companion of elder Williams, too!! fun stuff, huh? Got some good stuff learned, he talked to me about missionaries really need to present commitments (such as reading the Book of Mormon, coming to church, etc.) with authority and not just letting it go like nothing. Will work on that. Also went through the Area Books-we're working on merging our two area books we had. :D Fun stuff, it's good, so much work to do here. 
  6. Birthday -- THANK YOU SO MUCH MY FAMILY for all the letters, emails, and the wonderful package I received. words cannot describe how grateful I am for you and all this love you've shown me! Feel the Lord's love for you, and mine for you, too. We basically had a normal day, at the beginning. Did studies, had asked not to do an exchange today, so it was kind of nice and normal. We were a bit late getting out the door but that's life. Will work on it. Went to go try and see a couple of old amis, but neither of them were there. Benjamin, Samantha, and Gaël weren't there either. But we got to do some contacting with Samuel, a great YSA brother with us, then we went over to his house for a long time, enjoying a great French salad with AWESOME tomatoes (they are seriously so good here), and also had a great meal with rice and stuff, and finished off with a GREAT crêpe, the first French one I've had, so good. 

Focuses for this Next Week
  • Love of God
  • Area book
  • Tram/bus contacting
  • Member missionary work
  • Amis to Church for sure!!!
  • Conversion, personal conversion
Wanted to express also my love for my family. I love you all SOOO MUCH. I'm feeling better with Elder Walton, we both have somewhat independant personalities but if we both kind of do our own thing to an extent, things go well! Great friend, adjusting well, much better than I did. He thanked me for being a good trainer too so that was good. Don't know if I'm that great, but hope I'm not terrible. Could be better at leaving the apartment on time and stuff but we alll got stuff to work on I guess. 

Feel full of love and joy on my mission, starting to love and be happy in it. I bear testimony that Christ lives, He is a real person, he is not just a person who lived in history, He lives and loves us and hears us. God lives and is real, his love is maybe the most powerful force on this earth! And we can do great things with Them. We need to be responsible to Jesus Christ for how we live this life. May we all try and become closer to him to be responsible to Him for our actions, so we can be happy and dwell with him again after this life. 

May you all feel god's love and pray to have this gift as Moroni exhorted us. Pray and "get your friends to church!" :D

Gld bless everyone. 

Sincerely, with lots of love, 

Elder Adam Grant Edwards

Monday, September 7, 2015

September 7, 2015 - Happy 19th birthday, Adam! He is excited to be training a new missionary!

Adam is turning 19 this week, on September 8!  
Me and Djenice, one of our most legit investigator! He is so cool and
so sweet, just a great kid. You would not believe it. Sweetest spirit
ever. His family is less active so he's eleven but hasn't been baptized

By Djenice's house, a bit west and north of ours. Waiting at the bus stop. We spend a lot of time doing that. :D

Favorite tie baby :D  Went to lunch with Eddy, Michael, Simon, and Elyse, so,e JA fr, the ward. It was fun. 

The view fro, our tram stop right by our home!! Cool, huh?

A suit that elder Mcbride gave to me before he left--really stylish!,!!  My shoulders look huge guys!!, haha!

Hey Mom!!!!

How is the best lady in the world doing? I hope really really well!!! Thank you so much for the nice; heartfelt letter: I loved those birthday pictures!!! Haha. I feel happy, I don't really feel as sad as I used to about being gone from home and stuff; you know. Well it's just really fun, getting to do all this and feeling happy and more connected with the Lord oftentimes.

You know, it's funny that you should mention my little spirit, I still kind of feel like the big, solemn, chubby little Ukboogook that I once was, you know, with the chubby cheeks and stick weapons and all. I'm a warrior for Christ! Working on my testimony; trying to give more in my mission: Thank you for all your support. I love you all so much! Life is good and I am happy. I'm starting to feel like the separation is harder for you, Mom, and maybe Dad too; than it is for me! Love you tons. 

You said you wanted some photos; is there anything else you want? 

[As of a few days ago Adam is a new trainer to a brand new greenie -- or in France they call them "blue" -- Elder Elliot Walton.] 

The first few days together have been going good It's cool, because it's kind of a transition right now from the initial hope and excitement to have a "son" and then really getting to meet him and work with the real guy! Haha it's cool, we are a lot the same, I'd say. Pretty crazy. Yeah, they've been good though. I've been making him work pretty hard, especially his first day or two we went out. :)

Thanks for that really nice tribute! Thanks for telling me about those things you're doing, you can do it, Mom! You know, one of the things I've found with going to bed on time is trying to take it seriously and just treating it like a deadline, like a must-do, or even connecting it with your duty to God, you know, like he's asked you to go to bed early and so other tings need to wait. But I know you may have tried that. God bless you in your efforts in teaching Seminary. Thanks so much Mom! You're a great example. You're one of the best teachers I know. You're the best Mom! These things will pass before too long, you know. You'll feel so natural in that classroom before long! I know it; I believe in you and love you!!! :D

Okay, so some investigator updates: Right now, our top three or four people are Djenice (I'll include a picture, just sent one actually), and he's doing really well, we bumped the baptism for him and David back to the 31 October. His family needs to come back active too, that's the problem. We also have stuff still to teach him. But yeah, then we have Kevin, who is a great African guy, don't have a picture of him, but he's really cool, he actually played soccer with us one pday a while back, and he's ready to be baptized, we just need to teach him the last few things and he needs to find a good stable job and apartment. Any prayers for him would be apreciated! The moment he finds them, he's good to be baptized!! (His requirement, not ours :D) Also we have Innocent who is a GREAT humble African man, 35 or 40, so good and so humble, Protestant, really open, just doesn't want to change that much yet. We'll get him there, though. In studies we've really been talking about the Book of Mormon and the power it has to convert us and convert people, so we'll be applying that to our amis :D ZAP spiritual power!!! !:D :D Missionary life is going pretty good. Feel like I could contact in the tram and buses lots more, probably dropped off since Elder McBride left, but know also that i'm still making efforts and that's enough. I have a really good idea now what is required and expected of a missionary. Man, it's cool.  We also have David, who is often not in town, so we haven't seen hi, in a while. He understands the Book of Mormon and Restoration though, I think. (Need to get more info from him.) Have been enjoying reading from the Book of Mormon and doing studies together (twice as long for trainers and blues) and learning about how to confound wicked stoners and baptize people! Haha all right, there's more to it than that. No, but things have been good. 

Thanks Dad!  Yeah, shirts and shoes are doing pretty good. Socks are good! Like them now. I actually don't fit my gray suit anymore....cough....hahaha!!! Freak I've been meaning to lose some weight, I haven't gained that much though! I'm only 170 pounds, I couldn't have been less than 165 when I left! Man could that make that much of a difference? Oh well. 

yeah, stuff's doing well, thanks Dad. Love all the ties; tank you so much.

Loved your sweet letter last week about how much sacrifice you've made. Made me grateful, was sweet to me. I'm thankful to God for all those sacrifices you made for me. Amazes me sometimes. 

How is the family? Was it fun to gather together yesterday? 

Thank you for all the birthday loves and prayers and wishes! God bless you all!