Monday, February 23, 2015

El Clima Frio Michigan!!

Well, first things first... This past Friday was transfer calls! Me and Elder Dunn are staying together as companions in downtown Grand Rapids. They also closed the Rockford area that was in our ward and so now me and Elder Dunn are going to be covering that area also! So my new district will be me and Elder Dunn, the Lowell/Ada Elders, and 2 sets of Spanish Elders from Grandville. There is only 1 Spanish branch, and 2 sets of Spanish missionaries in the whole mission and they are now in my district. So since I am going to be doing trade-offs with them and will probably be teaching a few lessons in Spanish, I am going to have to brush up on my Spanish. It should be an exciting time, as I will have a total of 7 trade-offs this transfer!! If I teach a lesson in Spanish with them thenI will have taught lessons in 3 different languages (English, Spanish, and American Sign Language)!!

Well, this week was kind of an off week... First off it has been bitter cold here lately and this week is supposed to be just as cold. Elder Dunn had some health issues this week and so we were not able to go out and do as much teaching and stuff as we usually do and we also had to go to a few doctors appointments for him. He is doing better now and we are back in the swing of things. We were able to teach Lyndsay twice last week and she is still super solid! It still blows me away that she is so prepared!!  We taught her and her son an FHE lesson last week about Lehi's vision and it was a lot of fun. Her son seemed to really enjoy the lesson and we were able to apply it to Lyndsay also! It has truly been amazing how many miracles I have been able to see lately! The Lord is truly blessing me and Elder Dunn! We have also been teaching a few new people that have a lot of potential!! I am excited for this next transfer and for all of the things that the Lord has in store for me and Elder Dunn! Me and Elder Dunn have also found a way to keep our Spirits up, we bought ropes at a western store here and we have been using the back of a chair as our roping dummy. We tell people that we are 2 cowboys trapped in Michigan! 

Well, I am sorry that this is super short... Like I said it was kind of an off week and I usually have my planner with me to remind me of all of the cool things that we did this past week but since it is a new transfer I don't have my old planner with me.. :(
But I am grateful, as always, for the love and support that you give me!! You are in my prayers!! Have a great week!

Te amo,
Elder Bloskas

Monday, February 16, 2015

"And whoso recieveth you, there I will be also..."

It is a beautiful day here In Grand Rapids. I know that you probably get tired of hearing this every single week but it was an amazing week and the Lord is continuing to do miracles here in Grand Rapids!
I will start by telling you the best part of the week.. We started meeting with the most prepared person that I have ever met in my life. Her name is Lyndsay. She got interested in the church after her fiancee mentioned his Mormon faith and she decided that she wanted to support him and to search out what the church believes for herself. Her fiancee is a Green Beret in the army and has not been super open with his beliefs but he just wanted to know that she would support him with his desire to go to church and she said that she not only wanted to support him in going to church but wanted to be at church with him.  She has spent the last several weeks engulfing herself in the gospel and learning as much as she can about the church. Last week she got on and requested a Book of Mormon and when we called her she said that she wanted to meet as soon as possible. We went over to her house and started to teach her the Restoration but honestly she already knew most of it. She has done so much studying that we are pretty much just connecting the dots. The Spirit in that lesson was the strongest that I have ever felt in a lesson and the Spirit was absolutely guiding the lesson. She has such real intent and amazing questions and is really seeking truth and allowing our Heavenly Father to teach her. She is 110% prepared!! It reminded me of the promise that is given in D&C 84:88 that says, "And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." I know for a fact that she has been led from our Heavenly Father to where she is now so that she can accept the gospel. We taught her the first part of the Plan of Salvation also this week and she and her son were at church yesterday and loved it! We are going over tonight to do a Family Home Evening (FHE) with them and to teach a lesson tailored for her 6 year old son. It has been an exciting challenge to involve him as much as we can in teaching her but I have loved it so much!! The Lord DOES prepare people to accept this gospel and honestly I have a strong testimony that this is in fact the Lord's work!
We taught several other people this week and we are really staying busy! We received 5 referrals last week and so we will be spending a lot of time contacting them and meeting with those people this week! I am excited to continue to see what happens with those people that we are currently teaching and also those that the Lord continues to put into our path!
Friday, we went to Detroit to go to the temple with Bro. Banner! It was so amazing. I have forgotten just how much I love going to the temple and feeling the sweet Spirit there. I thought that the Lubbock temple back home was small but the one here in Detroit is even smaller!! But all of the temples are truly the house of The Lord and it is a true blessing to be able to go!
Ethan will be getting the Aaronic priesthood this next Sunday!! I am so excited for him as he continues to progress in the gospel!
This is the last week of the transfer so I will know Friday whether I will still be in Grand Rapids or if I will be leaving. We are thinking that Elder Dunn will be getting transferred and I would be shocked if I got transferred but you never know what could happen!!
Well that's about it for the week!! I am truly grateful to be a part of this amazing work here in Michigan!! Thanks for continuing to pray for me and for those that I work with, your prayers are being answered!!

-Elder Bloskas

Monday, February 9, 2015

The Miracles Continue

First off, I understand that last week's update didn't go through for some reason so I am sorry that I have left you in the dark. I promise that I did write emails last week; I guess several of them just didn't go through... 
Anyways, this week was another amazing week here in Grand Rapids! I am daily humbled by just how blessed I am to be able to see so many miracles in my own life and in the lives of those that I get to work with!

Tuesday I was on trade-offs with Elder Anderson. He came here to Grand Rapids in my area and we got to do quite a bit of door knocking. All of the elders in my district are great missionaries and Elder Anderson is another great missionary. I really enjoyed getting to work with him this past week. Wednesday after district meeting we ate at Smash Burger before I went on trade-offs with the zone leaders in Wyoming (the city in Michigan not the state) and it was awesome. Me and Elder Derricott had a lot of fun and got a lot done. One of the really cool miracles that we saw was when we were door knocking. We were about to head to an appointment but decided to knock on one last door. A kid answered and we asked for his parents. He ran upstairs and went to get his mom. We see 2 ladies coming down the stairs and the first one said "Hey, its the missionaries!" we were really confused because nether one of us recognized them. It turns out that they were members of another ward. Both of these ladies were having a gospel conversation and the lady who lived there was having a hard time. She started bawling the moment she realized who we were and was freaked out that we happened to knock on her door right at the perfect moment. It was a really awesome experience as we got to share a message with them and really encourage them. It was amazing to see just how involved the Lord is in this work and how he is constantly placing us in people's paths! She really needed us at that moment and it was awesome to get to experience that. Thursday, we traded back and me and Elder Dunn got to get back to work. Friday we got to go to Ethan's track meet! He runs for Calvin College and the meet was at another Christian college. We were nervous about how they would react to us being there watching the meet but it all worked out. He won the 800m and got 3rd in the 4X400M! He is only a freshman and he is such a stud!! Saturday was Ethan's baptism! It was such an awesome day and afterwards we got to take him out to eat and celebrate with him! Yesterday during Sacrament I had the opportunity to confirm him and be the one who got to confer the gift of the Holy Ghost on him. It was such an amazing experience and I was so blessed to be a part of it!! This week is going to be another great week. Friday we are getting to go to the Detroit temple and we might have to email that day since we are taking that as our P-Day instead of Monday so it will probably be Friday evening after I get back that I will be emailing and sending out my weekly email but we will see. Saturday we are having a half mission training with Elder Nash, who is a member of the 70! So that will be awesome!!
Things are going great here in Grand Rapids and we have another baptism in 2 weeks!! I am so blessed to be able to be on the front lines of the Lord's work. It is truly amazing!! As always, thanks for all of the love, support and prayers! They really make a difference!!

Elder Bloskas

P.S. Here is me with Brother Banner's daughter's horse (or large dog) and pictures of Ethan's Baptism!!

Post from last week; February 2, 2015

I hope that you are having a great day! Sorry that this is a little bit later than it usually is, we got snowed in this morning and weren't able to leave our apartment until noon.

It was another great week here in Grand Rapids! It is amazing how I have been able to continue to see the Lord's hand in my life every single day! We had several of our appointments cancel earlier in the week but they all rescheduled for later in the week and it made us super busy this weekend trying to fit in all of our appointments with our investigators.

Tuesday we met with a lady that is a little older (that we have been meeting with) that is planning on getting baptized at the end of the month. She is a sweet lady who is really looking for more purpose in her life and she has made a lot of progress! Most of the rest of our appointments for Tuesday fell through.

Wednesday we had district meeting and it went really well! We also got to meet with Ethan, the guy who is getting baptized this weekend whose parents weren't happy about him being baptized.  It was really good! He is on the Calvin College track team and so naturally I challenged him to a race... I will try to attach the video on the email. I was really close to winning but was out of breath for like 30 minutes afterwards. 

Thursday I was in Rockford on trade-offs with Elder Newman. He is a great missionary who is doing great things in Rockford! Things are really slow in their area and so they are doing a lot of door knocking. I haven't gotten to do a lot of door knocking lately since we have been so busy with lessons so it was great to be able to go back to my door knocking roots and talk to a lot of people! 

Friday and Saturday we just met with all of those people that canceled on us earlier in the week.  We also did a little bit of door knocking and met several really cool people that hopefully we will get to start meeting with. I didn't get to spend to much time in the hood this week so I don't have any awesome stories about almost getting robbed or anything. Sorry. 

Yesterday was a great day at church, there were a lot of people gone because of the snow but it was great. I interviewed one of the other missionary's investigators so that she could be baptized and Ethan had his interview also yesterday. 

Last night we went over to the Reed's home for dinner. They are an amazing missionary minded family that really uplifts us when we eat at their home. On the way out the door we were running to our car since it was cold and it was snowing really hard and my planner fell out of my pocket. By the time we went back for it (since it has all of our potential investigators and pretty much my whole life in it) it had been 30 mins and there was no way that we would be able to find it. You couldn't even see where we had walked 30 mins earlier. I said a prayer that I would be able to find it and right as I finished praying I found it!! It was a really cool to see how prayers are answered even if they are for small things.

This week is going to be a great week. I will be on trade-offs all week but I will get to be with several great missionaries and I am excited to learn from them. Friday I get to go to Ethan's track meet (if we don't get kicked out for being missionaries on a Christian college campus) and then Ethan is being baptized Saturday! It will be great. I cant wait!! 

Thanks for the prayers and all of the support!! Have a great week!

Elder Bloskas