Tuesday, December 30, 2014

New Years week

Yes my friends!
     I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas full of joy and happiness and love......... AND food.  Don't forget food.  So Christmas was definitely different here in Uganda, but it's also a Christmas that I will never forget.  We visited some recent converts and shared with them the story of Jesus Christ's birth in the book of Luke.  We even sang Christmas carols and we just loved reaching out to those who were alone.  Because no one should be alone on Christmas.  Later, we had like 3 dinner appointments all within 5 hours.  And I just want to add, I ate everything and it didn't come out the way it came in.  Super proud of myself.  But the spirit of Christmas was so strong through out the day.  It's not about the things that you get or the feast you have at the end.  It's about remembering the Savior and the gift He is to the world.  
      So we have been teaching this one sabo named Danson who's good friends with some of our recent converts.  He gained such a strong testimony and He truly loves the gospel.  We committed him to be baptized and yesterday was his day!   Such a strong soul we are so happy to be apart of his big day.  Even, a couple days before, one of his teeth got super irritated and infected.  And we thought Oh no!!!  But it was all good, he toughed it out.  What a beast.  
     Something that I found to be really funny is that when we meet new people and they ask where we are from, I tell them California and every one of them say, "Ohhhh yes I know about California."  Apparently, kids that go to school have California as part of there curriculum.  Even they tell me things that I never really new about Cali.  Nutz.  
    But anyways, now that the New year is coming up, it's time to reflect on the things that you have learned in 2014 and make goals for 2015.  Like for me, I'm making a goal of learning how to cook.  Because I'm getting sick of oatmeal.  But there are other goals that you cannot physically see that can change not only you, but the people around you.  Maybe one of those goals is to meet someone new every day.  Or maybe it's giving a compliment to every person you talk to.  No matter what, make the best of 2015 because it's gunna go like that.   I hope you all have a good and remember that the Lord is always bearing you up and preparing you for something greater. 

Elder Wilson

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer, is what we need to always focus on.  Not only on Christmas, but throughout the whole year.  He is the gift that our Heavenly Father has given all of us.  It is through Him that we can find true and lasting eternal happiness in this life and in the life to come.  Never forget the importance of giving and gratitude.  Christ, sacrificed His life for every one of us.  Take the time this Christmas to find the things that you are grateful for and what you can give to others.  Spend time with your families and show them how much you cherish them.  I want you all to know that I know that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the light.  He is the Savior of the world and He lives.  I know that His birth marked the start of the gift of eternal life given to us by our Heavenly Father and I want you all to remember the true importance of Christmas.  I love you all!  Have a great Christmas and enjoy the time you have with your loved ones.

Merry Christmas,
Elder Wilson

Monday, December 15, 2014

Testimony on change

Yes, my friends!
     So, start of another transfer with my new companion Elder Wightman.  So far so good. So since Elder Wightman is new to the area, I have had to show him around and lead the area, which I find pretty stressful.  There's so much work when you are a missionary.  And when you don't have as much experience as the other missionaries, I always wonder how much I've improved as a servant of the Lord.  
      This week I don't have that much to talk about.  But, I just want to share my testimony about change.  As a missionary, I continually have to change certain attributes or teaching tactics to help others draw closer to Christ.  And, sometimes, change is just super hard.  When someone makes a routine, it is always hard to leave that confidence that you have.  But when change comes, it can either strengthen us or bring us down.  It all depends on how we view it.  I know that after my time on my mission, home will never be the same.  But I know that if I know it's to bring me higher, then it will.  Our purpose in life is to change, to be better, to improve, to be the people that our Heavenly Father wants us to be.  My Father in Heaven has blessed me more than I deserve, and I wish more than anything that I could go back to when I first received those blessings throughout my life.  But change is what keeps us on that path to eternal life, as long as we know what to do when those changes come.  As we enter into the Christmas season, I want everyone to remember the Savior and how because of him, we are able to repent and change our lives for the better.  I love you all, have a great week, and know that I love you and your Father in Heaven loves you.
Elder Wilson

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Starting another transfer

Yes my friends,
       I hope everyone is having a good week getting more into the christmas spirit!  I just finished my 4th transfer and now I'm starting another one with a new companion in the same area Kajjansi.  I will be working with Elder Whiteman and I'm super excited about the things we will accomplish for the next 6 weeks.  I'm so grateful to be serving the Lord and have the experiences that I've had.  
      On sunday, one of our investigators Bashir got baptized and he was super excited.  He's been reading the Book of Mormon so much and he loves to learn more about the scriptures.  We teach him and a couple of his friends at his house and so he is the first of many baptisms we hope to bring forth.  Starting this new transfer, we are looking at a lot of solid people in our teaching pool.  I'm super stoked for the work right now.
      Something that I've been learning from my mission is the importance in involving the spirit into my missionary work.  Overall, the difference between a hardworking missionary and a mediocre missionary is whether he/she seeks for the spirit to guide and lead us.  When we focus on putting our will aligned with the Lord's, we can expect many blessings to result.  One of our recent converts, who has been busy with work most sundays, came this past sunday to church and we have been praying to know that no matter what, he needs the gospel in his life.  This past sunday, he bore his testimony to everyone and I truly felt the spirit.  We talked to him later and he said he felt a difference when he came to church compared to when he just worked.  If we continue to involve the spirit in helping him progress, he will be able to be fully converted to the gospel.  
      I'm loving being a missionary because there is literally no other work in the world than this.  I love you all have a good week and know that the Lord is watching over you.
Elder Wilson

Monday, December 1, 2014

A warm new month

What's up everyone,

     I hope everyone had an amazing Thanksgiving and I hope that there were no unnecessary deaths on Black Friday, or as we like to call it here in Africa,..... Friday (New girl reference) ((But really Black Friday is not a thing here))  There is so much work to do in such a short amount of time.  I'm already about 6 months into my mission and I need to take advantage of the time that I have because it's going by fast.  The mission is a special time of your life where you have the opportunity to bless the lives of others for eternity.  That's why it's important to not waste it. 
      This past week has been full of sweat, blood, and tears...... but man, soooo much sweat.  We've been trying to find more people to teach and the Lord has blessed us slowly slowly.  We have been asking for referrals like crazy and we have gotten good feedback coming from both investigators and recent converts.
     On Sunday, Cyrus who we have been teaching was baptized!  Such a great baptismal service and the spirit was very strong there.  She is apart of a recent convert family of ours that has been away because she was in boarding school.  She truly gained a testimony of the truthfulness of the gospel and I'm grateful for the opportunity that I have been given to see it grow within her.  Even on this coming Sunday, we are looking at 2 more baptisms.  Josephine is a referral from missionaries from Entebbe and she is the most prepared and powerful person to receive the gospel.  She learns super quickly and she knows the gospel is true.  Bashir is someone we ran into at the middle of last transfer who has been taught by the missionaries before.  He is super crazy and funny, and he truly wants to be baptized so we are excited for him this Sunday.
      Being in Africa, all the things I eat are pretty normal but there are a few weird things that I have grown to love.  There's a fruit here called Fene or called Jackfruit that is the size of two bowling balls sitting together.  The Branch building that we serve at has a two trees that grow them all the time and man, is it good.  but wow is it weird looking.  But I was eating some one day and I'm pretty convinced that I am allergic to it because the inside of my mouth started to get itchy and my tongue started to swell a little bit. but it's not to the point of death so I might still eat it a couple more times in the future.  Also, This month is the season of insenene, which is like locusts, or grasshoppers.  I tried some myself and I have to say....... it's pretty dang good.  Everyone here eats it and they will fry that stuff up like nothing.  My companion doesn't really like it so I always eat his portions, and I ain't even mad.  Some members of the branch have seen me eat insenene and they saw that I baptized one of our investigators on Sunday, so they would call me John the Baptist, because that is what he ate in the wilderness.  No doubt, no doubt.
      I'm so grateful for the opportunity I have to serve the Lord, especially in this part of the world.  There are so many experiences that I am having that will strengthen my faith and testimony, while I help strengthen the faith and testimonies of others.  I truly can't imagine serving my mission anywhere else except in Uganda and i'm loving every moment of it.  Have a good week everyone and remember that the Savior suffered so we don't have to.
Elder Wilson
Pics:  Cyrus' baptism!
          Family portrait (my trainer and my trainer's trainer) (try to imagine us wearing black turtle necks and blue jeans)