Saturday, October 31, 2015

From: kimberlylseaman
Date: October 26, 2015 at 1:16:15 PM PDT
Taken on your son's last p-day. He has been such a bright spit for us when he comes in the office. We will both miss seeing him. You did a wonderful job raising him!
Elder and Sister Seaman 
From: Luis Tenorio
Sent: Friday, October 30, 2015 3:24 PM
Subject: Returning with honor
Dear sister Nyholm,

My name is Luis Tenorio. I had the enormous privilege of being your son's branch president while in the México MTC.
Today I was visiting Minnesota on a business trip when a missionary called my attention  (see the photo attached)
Thank you for having an amazing son who served his Lord well. Great blessings are in store for him and for your entire family.

Brother Tenorio

Ocotober 30, 2015
Text read:
"I don't know who you are or who they are but was ordered to send this to you.  They're excited."

Sent: Monday, October 26, 2015 12:49 PM
Subject: See you Friday!!!
This week went pretty dang quick for reasons that are probably pretty obvious :) I really don't even remember what happened this week for the most part but I guess I can give you some highlights that I do remember, but it will probably be pretty short. Sorry. 
On Monday last week we were able to teach Dominic again and it went super well. We just talked about the BoM with him and committed him to read it every day so we are praying that he is following up with that. He's an awesome kid and I love teaching him and I'm really going to miss him when I leave. 
On Friday we were able to meet with Roy again and it went really well. We mostly just talked about faith and its purpose in our lives and how it can help us to receive answers to our prayers. But the super extra great part is that agreed to let us "practice" the lessons with him so we will have to see how that goes. I don't know if I've told you about Roy before but he is a New Testament mastermind so it super fun to meet with him and learn from him as he strives to learn from us as well.
On Sunday we went all over the place and said goodbye to a lot of people and the biggest problem was that I told all of them that I was coming and so all of the them made dessert.... So we had apple crisp, chocolate chip cookies, mint ice cream, chocolate cake, and brownies all after dinner. I was stuffed, but it felt pretty good still haha. I love dessert. 
Alma 37: 37 says "Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day." I love the the fact that if we follow Gods counsel in all the we do then we can never go wrong. He will never lead us astray. I know that as we pray to Him for guidance and counsel that He will give us the strength and direction that we need in life to be able to return to Him one day. 
This Tuesday we get to go to our wards Fall Festival Chili Cookoff so I will get to see everyone again before I go. So I'm pretty dang excited for Tuesday haha. 
As you probably noticed, I'm trying to flood you with pictures before I get home. I hope it's working real good :) I can't think of anything else to write right now so I'll leave you with this for now and add whatever comes to mind during the rest of the day. I love you! Can't wait to see you on Friday! Make it a great week and Keep Smiling :)
       - Elder Nyholm

Sent: Monday, October 19, 2015 2:02 PM
On Wednesday we ran a family history booth at the community college in town. We were able to talk to a lot of young people which was good but not many of them were very interested in family history. I just walked around with a bowl of candy and pass along cards and invited everyone to come over to the booth and learn more. It was fun just going round and giving people candy haha. 
Thursday night was Witches Night downtown. We had planned to go street contacting downtown that day without knowing that is was Witches Night so we still went and street contacted. To answer your questions, Witches Night is a night when all the old ladies go downtown dressed up as witches and drink a lot of alcohol. There are some people that go and don't drink though so those are the ones we talked to :) We were able to talk to quite a few people so it was a pretty good night for us. 
Saturday we went to a family history discovery day that was really boring. They taught all of us missionaries how to do family history even though we aren't allowed to use family history software. So it was pretty much just a useless time spent in the church building. But after that we went to the Ferrys and helped them chop up wood so that was pretty fun. 
In Alma 31:38 it says in respect to some missionaries in the Book of Mormon that "[The Lord] also gave them strength, that they should suffer no manner of afflictions, save it were swallowed up in the joy of Christ." I love that this scripture doesn't say that our afflictions go away, but that our afflictions will be swallowed up with the joy of Christ. I know that as we rejoice in Christ and his Atonement and do our best to draw close to him that we will have no trial that will overcome us and that cannot be overcome in the joy of Christ. 
Well I think that's about it. I love you!
     -Elder Nyholm

Monday, October 26, 2015

Date: October 25, 2015 at 5:16:44 PM PDT
Enjoyed a lovely visit from these two Elders this evening! Thanks for sending us your amazing sons!
Best, Carie Skinner and family.

Date: October 25, 2015 at 1:37:00 PM PDT
I'll have to blame Elder Shawgo for the quality. :)  I'm so impressed with your son; they had given me a blessing before my surgery, but as he was saying goodbyes today, I felt there was something else missing. Sure enough, he tuned into the Spirit for what I needed.  -Jim Calkins

Date: October 25, 2015 at 12:39:09 PM PDT
Here ya go!:)

Date: October 24, 2015 at 3:26:05 PM PDT
Meant to do this earlier. I did a 5k walk with some of my cousins this morning. Taking Strides against Breast Cancer. One of my Cousins is a 18 year survivor. So I have just gotten a chance to sit down.   -Sister Diana Ferry


Date: October 25, 2015 at 6:45:41 PM PDT
I added a few more that my younger brother took when he was playing with my phone.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Sent: Monday, October 12, 2015 12:24 PM
Subject: It's been a week
So this week was super good and then all of a sudden was super crazy. Tuesday we had exchanges, yes, more exchanges. Elder Leary came here from KC3 and spent the day doing work with me here in LS2. It was a pretty fun exchange and we got quite a bit done. Elder Leary is an awesome guy too so I really enjoyed being able to work around him and learn from his example. I'm also excited to see all the success that he has as he continues his mission. I think he will find that his diligence helps him a whole lot while he is out here. 
Wednesday was pretty much just a day full of trying Less-Actives and trying to find new people to teach. A pretty generic day with not much interesting stuff happening and not much teaching happening either because we couldn't find anyone to teach. Bummer.
Thursday we had an awesome meeting with a part-member family in our Ward. The non-member, Roy, is an awesome guy that just has a huge collection of knowledge about the Bible. Originally we just started a bible study with him but now every time we go we are able to help him resolve some of his concerns with the Mormon church. Now he is even willing to just study chapters of the Book of Mormon with us. It is definitely a blessing to be involved in helping him to develop his faith. I'm super excited for next week when we meet with him again because we will be eating dinner with him and his wife will be making us (hopefully) Brazilian food because she is originally from Brazil. 
On Friday we had Zone Training. Afterwards we went as a district to Ted's, a new Mexican restaurant in town. It was super good, definitely worth going to again. After that went to an appointment that fell through which was kind of a bummer. Our Ward started their Ward camp out that night so we went over there and shared foil dinners with them. Then we left there to go to another appointment. And this is where the week kind of took a big turn. 
So we were sitting at this stoplight in the car, waiting to turn left. It was about 7:20pm, so it was dark. Then all of the sudden... WHAM!!! Some Jeep ran straight into the back of our car at the intersection. Lucky for us no one got hurt and it was not our fault at all which took some stress out of the situation. We think the driver in the other car must have been looking at a phone or GPS because she was going fast enough (probably about 35 mph) to total our car and there was no indication that she used her brakes at all. So long story short, no one got hurt, we are riding bikes now, and the work keeps on going :) don't worry Mom, I didn't even get whiplash and my head doesn't hurt :) 
So then Saturday was spent filling out paperwork and pretty much nothing got done which really put a bit of a damper on the whole week. And the car is gone so missionary work is just going to be a lot slower in general which is really annoying. On the plus side we still have bikes and those help us get exercise so that's good :)
I really like Mosiah 3:19 which says "For the natural man is an enemy to God...and will be...unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child..."  Each one of us has tendencies to disobey God's commandments and to just follow out own will. But as we apply the atonement of Jesus Christ to our lives we can put off those natural tendencies and become exactly what our Heavenly Father needs us to be. We can follow the will of God with exactness, putting aside our own will and instead  following the will of our Father, which will always result in more joy and happiness. 
On Sunday we had a good day riding our bikes from house to house and trying people along the way. The Whitney's had us over for dinner and made us some dang good enchiladas. I'm a huge fan of enchiladas, but I still think that Paul and Danielle make the best ones :o 
Well that's it for the week. I hope everything goes super well for you all. I love you!
    -Elder Nyholm


Friday, September 25, 2015

Sent: Monday, September 21, 2015 12:06 PM
This week was pretty insane. So here's how it all went down. 
Trainers get a call on Friday that they should attend the training meeting on Saturday. I did not get that call so I never went to the trainers meeting. On Tuesday, one of the elders in our zone (who did not get a training call originally) got a call from the APs to tell him that he was going to train. Well I never got a call so I was for sure not training. Then we get the transfer call on Tuesday night and it says "Elder Nyholm will be serving in Lees Summit 2nd as a District Leader and will be training a new missionary". Uhhhhhhhh... Thanks for the heads up President. So now I am training Elder Shawgo. 
Here are Elder Shawgo's stats. He is from Eagle Mountain Utah. He just graduated high school. He is a Spanish speaking missionary, came from the Provo MTC. He did swim team in high school. And he's a super solid missionary so I'm super glad to be able to train him this transfer. For your information, he is the 3rd Spanish speaking companion that I have had. 
So Elder Cope took of to Gallatin on Thursday which was a bummer. I'm sad to see him go. I liked him a lot. Gallatin has about 1,500 people in it... Boons. 
Thursday we went to transfers, picked up Elder Shawgo, got back and made some visits. Friday we started studies and got a call "KC1 elders got T-Boned at an intersection. They are ok but we need you to go pick them up". So we went and got them which took about 2.5 hours out of our day. When we got back we found out that we had to give our car to the KC1 sisters so we lost our car unexpectedly. And then on top of all that, our Housing Coordinator called us and told us that he signed a lease for a new apartment and that we needed to move. So we spent the rest of that day moving. So it was a busy busy crazy day. 
Saturday we got to ride bikes! First time in about a year that I rode a bike. Luckily the weather cooled down and it was almost too chilly to ride. It was awesome. I'm so excited to get a car back again haha. We are so much more effective with a car. I'm pretty sure that we will get a car back today though so it's ok :) 
Sunday was awesome because we had a few of the Less-Active families that we are working with come to church. I get really excited whenever they come. It makes me feel like the time we spend is actually worthwhile. We had a pretty slow week of teaching but it was ok because we had so many people come to church :)
Yesterday in church we discussed President Benson's talk "Beware of Pride". It says "Pride is the universal sin, the great vice... The antidote for pride is humility--meekness, submissiveness. It is the broken heart and contrite spirit." I've always thought that humility is such an awesome attribute to have and we learn from the scriptures that those who are humble followers of Christ are those who will eventually inherit the Kingdom of God. Christ himself was our perfect example of humility, always willing to submit to the will of the Father. I know that as we similarly submit to the will of our Heavenly Father that we will be blessed for our humility and more easily recognize the blessings from our Heavenly Father in our lives. 
Hehe we went to give a lady a blessing at the hospital and saw reserved clergy parking so we used it. Definitely a highlight of the week haha. 
That's about it for the week. I love you! Make it a great week!
     -Elder Nyholm
Sent: Monday, September 14, 2015 7:20 AM
This week was pretty darn uneventful. The week still went by really quick but it didn't feel like we got a whole lot done. It almost seemed like everyone was on vacation which would be really weird for this time of year. But we still got a little bit done so it's ok. 
On Monday last week we ended up going to the Kansas City Plaza as a district for P-Day. The plaza has a pretty fun atmosphere, kind of like going into downtown SF or something like that. It's basically a big outdoor mall with super overpriced stuff but it is still fun to go there and just walk around and look at things. There was a street magician there that put on a pretty good show and was really fun to watch. 
I don't know if I told you last week but our Ward choir is so tiny that Elder Cope and I joined it to help support even though we don't know how to read the music worth a darn. But luckily there are people there who are super good at adding the music so we can just follow them and sound halfway decent haha. The other problem is that transfers are this Thursday so it is very likely that one of us won't be there to sing the song that we have been practicing for this coming Sunday
And I'm sick again. Last time I got sick I ended up with a cold for about 2 months which ended up becoming a sinus infection. So I've probably got the same thing this week... Exciting. I'm just praying that it will go away without me having to go to the doctor to get antibiotics. 
This Wednesday we had interviews with President Vest. I remember Jeremy talking to me about how interviews were such a good experience for him and how they were some of the most memorable experiences of his mission. Well...not here. We go in, he looks at a little paper that we filled out, asks us if we have any questions for him and BOOM... next person. Unless you are being disobedient and then your interview goes from the normal 5 minutes to about 15-20 minutes. So I guess if you want to talk to President Vest on a more personal level the you just need to be disobedient. I think I'd rather avoid that haha. 
This week I was reading out of Preach My Gospel and found this quote "Avoid comparing yourself to other missionaries and measuring the outward results of your efforts against theirs. Remember that people have agency to choose whether to accept your message. Your responsibility is to teach clearly and powerfully so they can make a correct choice". I think this quote is applicable to all of us on many different levels. Obviously it applies to each one of us in the fact that we are all member missionaries, we should all be a support and a help to those around us wherever we may be. One of my favorite conference talks says "The lives of many great men will testify to you that ofttimes they have many failures, and there is no disgrace in falling down; the disgrace is lying there. To get up one more time than you fall is to be a winner. To stay down is to be a loser". I know that as we continue to live and share the gospel despite the challenges that we may encounter that we will have success in doing so and that we will be able to help others to improve their quality of life and come unto Christ. 
Sorry for the short letter this week. Let me know if there is anything else you want to know about. I love you! Make it a great week!
   - Elder Nyholm


Thursday, September 10, 2015

Sent: Monday, September 7, 2015 8:05 AM
Hey Everyone!
This week has been awesome. We've had a few miracles and some really fun times. The week, yes again, just flew by. I don't really remember anything that happened because time just gets all mashed together now haha. So it's a dang good thing that I wrote down some of the important stuff that happened this week. Hopefully I'll get it all :)
Number 1. The police here are horrible. We were sitting outside in the car trying to figure out where we needed to go and a policeman came up to us. Here's how the conversation went...
   "Can I ask what you are doing here?"
   "We are missionaries for our church and we are just figuring out where we need to go next"
   "You know you only have 15 minutes left right?" 
   "15 minutes until what?"
   "15 minutes until you have to stop knocking on doors. Do you have a permit to do this?"
   "We aren't solicitors... We don't need a permit..."
   "If you are going door to door then you are solicitors and need a permit. Next time I see you doing it I will give you a fine if you don't have a permit. You can go to City Hall to get a permit"
   So then he left. I was pretty positive that we didn't need a permit but we figured we'd check it out anyways. So the next morning we went to city hall to explain the situation and find out what we needed to do. The people there said that the policeman didn't know what he was talking about and that we needed to go to the police station for permits. So we went to the police station and they told us that the policeman didn't know what he was talking about and that we didn't need a permit to proselyte. Haha the Lord wins again. And now we have a paper from Police Station so that we can prove that we don't need a permit in case he decides to be a jerk again :)
On Tuesday I went on exchanges to Harrisonville. Not too much interesting stuff happened there. We did find a super cool single mom named Christie who really wants to learn more. So hopefully those missionaries will follow up on that and be able to help her progress. I also got to see the Kelleys again while I was in Harrisonville. Brother Kelley is a Gospel genius and has an entire library of church books. It's pretty sweet. And any question you have about the Gospel he can just pick out one of his books, open to the page where your question can be answered, and boom... You read it. We used to go there quite a bit when I was in KC3 so that Brother Kelley could help us answer questions from our investigators that we didn't know how to explain.
On Wednesday we got to teach Erica at the Laudies home. Erica is an investigator that we found about a week ago, the one who we found when we went to the house for second lunch/dessert ;) the lesson went super well and she committed to be baptized on October 10th! To make it even better, she came to the baptism of one of the Laudies kids on Saturday and LOVED it. She wasn't able to come to church this last Sunday but is planning on being there for sure this week. We are super excited for Erica. She is an awesome lady :)
We've been able to meet a few times with Kaila and Bruce. I met them when I was on exchanges here in Lees Summit 2nd Ward about 8 months ago. Kaila is Filipino and makes SUPER good food. I guess back in the day she used to feed the missionaries the leftovers almost every day but then a missionary said something really dumb to her and she never let the missionaries back in again. But yeah, we re super stoked to be a let o get back into their home and talk with them some more. They are an awesome couple. And I'm really hoping that Bruce gets a deer during the bow season because he said that he'll let us come over and butcher it with him :) 
On Friday Elder Parris came here on exchanges. He is such a solid missionary. It was super fun to be on exchanges with him. I think he's been out for about 11 months right now and he's just killing it. Super dedicated and diligent and an awesome example to me. The bummer is that most of our appointments fell through and there weren't many people home while he was with me so it didn't feel like a super productive/successful day. But it was still a great day and we did all we could so it was OK. 
On Saturday we set up a lemonade stand here in Lees Summit. We were giving out free lemonade and Books of Mormon in an effort to get some more new investigators. I think the street we were on was just too busy for people to stop though so only about 5 people actually talked to us and we only got one new investigator. On the plus side, we didn't get and doors slammed in our faces and everyone we talked to was super nice :) I think any day without rejection is a pretty good day haha.
Oh and Saturday was that baptism for the Laudies daughter. The older Bro Laudie told everyone a story about how when he was a missionary 55 years ago he baptized a 19 year old girl and her family and then got transferred the next week. Two weeks ago, Bro Laudies grandson was doing proxy baptisms at the Nauvoo temple and one of the temple workers heard the last name "Laudie" and asked the grandson if he knew Bob. He said "Yes, that's my grandpa". It turns out that this temple worker was the 19 year old girl that Bro Laudie baptized 55 years ago! She had been looking for him the whole time so that she could thank him for baptizing her and her family. So when they say that your service as a missionary will change others for a lifetime they are serious :) 
A quote that stuck out to me this week was this "Temptations are necessary for our advancement and our development. 'When temptations come to you, be humble and prayerful, and determined that you will overcome, and you will receive a deliverance and continue faithful, having the promise of receiving blessings'." As a missionary I get asked pretty often why God gives us temptations if He loves us so much. The truth of it is that we become more like God as we face and overcome temptation and trial. We develop more faith, more hope,more obedience, etc,man we face and overcome those temptations. Christ did the same thing when It was said of him that he would "take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities" (Alma 7:12). I know that as we face temptations with faith that we will be given strength to overcome them and will become what our Heavenly Father needs us to be. 
I think that's about it for the week. I love you. Make it a great week!
   - Elder Nyholm

 Sent: Monday, August 31, 2015 8:36 AM
 Subject: Hey Everyone!

Hey Everyone!

This week has been very hectic for me but has gone by super fast.
On Tuesday I went on exchanges in Blue Springs with the Zone Leaders.
That was the first time that I had been in the Blue Springs area and I really enjoyed it. I was with Elder Behymer, who is from the San Diego area. Then, the next day, Wednesday, I went to Kansas City 3rd Ward to do exchanges with Elder Antonio. The Kansas City 3rd Ward was my area before I went to Trenton. It was awesome because I was able to see some of the old people that I taught, like the Davies and Emily.
On Thursday we finally finished adding information to our new area book planner. We had to transfer all of our paper records to electronic records and it took a really long time and was very tedious and boring. But now we are happy that is all over. And, it is a lot easier to find potentials and former investigators records so that we can contact them. So in the end, I think that this new electronic Area Book tuff is really going to make missionary work a lot more effective.
On Friday we contacted several of our potential investigators. We were super blessed in that it seemed like we were always pulling up to the right house at the right time. Usually you try about 10 potentials and actually talk to 1-2 of them. On Friday we tried about 7 and were able to talk to about 5 of them. It was super sweet and now we have a lot more people to teach. So yeah, we are pretty excited about that.
Saturday we basically did service all day, which was good but kind of a bummer at the the same time. We helped one family cut down some big tree branches that they couldnt cut down alone. Then we went and shoveled a bunch of gravel/dirt for a family that is building a new retaining wall in their front yard. After that we helped someone clean their garage. The guy is in a wheelchair so there was no way he would've been able to do it all on his own. Then we got really lucky and someone brought us to "Legends of Asia", the best Chinese buffet that I've ever been to. I went there once about a year ago when I was serving in Independence and I've been wanting to go back ever since so I was extra excited to go this time :)
On Sunday we didn't have morning meetings because it was the 5th Sunday. So Elder Cope and I were excited to be studying and stuff that morning. Well, then we got a message at 7:15 asking if I would give a talk in Sacrament meeting at 9:00. So there went our relaxing morning haha. Well, mine anyways. But it all turned out well and I think I did OK even though I had such short notice and stuff. You'd think that after 22 months of teaching and talking to random people off the street that you wouldnt be nervous about giving talks anymore. Wrong.
I was still nervous as heck haha.

Well I think that's about it for the week. It's been a pretty normal week by missionary standards so we will have to see what next week brings. I feel like I don't usually have two "normal" weeks in a row.
We'll see :) Make it a great week. I love you!

   -Elder Nyholm

Enviado desde mi iPad
From: Peter Nyholm []
Sent: Monday, August 17, 2015 11:59 AM
To: Robert Nyholm; Janet Nyholm; amanda anderson
Tuesday was kind of a bummer. We had two appointments set up with recent converts and they both fell through. But that is missionary life for you. On the positive side, we received two referrals from members and had a very positive experience with both of them. Hopefully we will be able to begin teaching them both in the coming week. 
Wednesday we met an awesome guy named Emmanuel who requested a bible and a Book of Mormon. Emmanuel is from Liberia and he is really interested in what we believe as Mormons. He had a friend in Liberia that was LDS and so he started looking online and started chatting with the missionaries and learning about the church via the Internet. So we are super excited to start working with him and his family. I have to say though, Liberian accents are dang hard to understand. 
Thursday I learned that I have learned how to be a missionary. At least to some extent. We brought a member to a lesson with a recent convert and the recent convert had a question about the priesthood. Well, then him and our member started discussing it, a little heatedly, and you could totally tell that the spirit was gone. I've learned that in those situations it is best to just bear your testimony and move on. And that's exactly what we did and then the spirit came back and we were able to conclude our visit with the spirit. So I've learned at least a little bit :)
Friday we had a pretty cool experience. After dinner we felt like we should go visit an active member who we had not met before. We stopped by and introduced ourselves, got to know them, shared a message, etc. Before we left we asked them if there was anything we could do for them and the wife said "I've been struggling with a illness for a while and today I was thinking that I really need a priesthood blessing and now you showed up so can you help my husband give me a blessing?" So we did and it was a very spiritual experience and really helped us remember that the spirit is guiding us. 
Saturday we had a lot of good stuff planned but then everything fell through...
Sunday was awesome. We were able to visit a recent convert named Tim. He's a super solid guy and today was the first day I was able to meet him. He was baptized 2 weeks ago and has a super solid testimony and understanding of the gospel. We are working on preparing him to go to the temple to do baptisms and also to receive his patriarchal blessing. It's awesome to see people who are so solid in the gospel so soon after their baptisms. We were also able to visit a active family in our ward. After we shared a message and we're starting to walk out the door, the mother told us that she had been planning on sharing a message with her family but didn't know what to share and that the message we shared with the family was exactly what her family needed at that point in time. The spirit strikes again :)
This week we learned about Charity in our gospel principles class. The question was posed of if we do not provide service and charitable acts then will we begin to lose charity. It was awesome because earlier this week I was reading a General Conference talk that quoted "The Screwtape Letters" and said "The more often [a person] feels without acting, the less he will be able ever to act, and, in the long run, the less he will be able to feel.” As Nephi says in 2 Nephi 28:30 "blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more; and from them that shall say, We have enough, from them shall be taken away even that which they have." Following the promptings of the spirit and providing service to those around us are such important aspects of the Gospel. I know that as we do so that our testimonies of the gospel will be strengthened and that our desire to provide service to those around us will increase. Overall, we will grow closer to our Heavenly Father and our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Well I think that's about it for the week. I love you!
      -Elder Nyholm

Sent: Monday, August 10, 2015 10:30 AM
So I messed up again and forgot to write down all the interesting stuff that happened this week so this might be a little bit shorter email. 
I assumed that I would get transferred on Thursday so we spent most of Tuesday and Wednesday visiting members and investigators who I've grown really close to over the past few months. I'm really glad that we did that because I did end up being transferred. I am now serving with Elder Cope in the Lees Summit 2nd ward. Elder Cope is pretty new to the mission. This is his 7th week out. He's from St George and he's a really cool guy and a very diligent missionary. I'm excited to be serving with him this transfer. 
I do really miss the Trenton Branch though. I don't miss the area one bit. But I do miss the members a heck of a lot. When they are so few members in your branch you grow really close to them really quick so I really miss them all. There are good members here in Lees Summit as well though so it's OK :)
This is the first area where I've lived with a member. We live with Bro Snider and he's an awesome guy. He's super funny and really likes to talk so sometimes we have to sneak away a little bit but it's all good. I think I'm really going to enjoy living here. 
We've been able to see most of the recent converts and investigators since I've been here. There are a lot of really great people that we are teaching who I am excited to continue working with.
Funny experience this week. I went and bought some food on Thursday since we can't bring much food from area to area. Well I bought some ice cream and then we went straight to dinner with a family in our war d that has 12 kids. I asked them if I could put the ice cream in their freezer and they said yes. Then after dinner they busted out the ice cream and gave it to all 16 of us for dessert hahahaha. Elder Cope looked at me and started laughing and kind of whispered "thanks for the ice cream Elder". So I figured that they really must enjoy ice cream and just left them with the rest of the carton. That's what I get for asking a member to store my ice cream for me haha. 
Mom I am getting your emails. I hope Paul didn't send my birthday card back to Trenton because I won't get it there since I've been transferred. I'll call the office though and have them call those elders to get them to send the card back to me though if that's the case. It will all work out :) 
The scripture that stood out to me this week was Alma 36:3 when Alma is talking to his son Helaman and says "I do know that whosoever shall put their trust in God shall be supported in their trials, and their troubles, and their afflictions, and shall be lifted up at the last day". The part where it says "supported IN their trials" really helped me to realize that God doesn't just take our problems way from us. However, he does give us the strength to work through them. We could never learn and grow if we were not given opportunities to work out our own problems. No one likes trials, but the truth of the matter is that without them we would never be able to progress and develop and become more like our Heavenly Father. As Paul says "I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong"
Well I think that's about it for the week. I love you. Make it a great week!
         -Elder Nyholm

Sent: Monday, August 3, 2015 7:45 AM
Lot's of random stuff in this E-Mail. Shotgun approach. Go.
This week (well maybe last) we got a nail in our tire in the truck. Luckily our Branch President is a car mechanic so he took care of it for us. He was nice enough to save the nail for us though so I put it in the envelope with our mileage log and receipts and sent it to our Car Czar with a little letter attached. So I'm really hoping he thinks it's funny and is happy we saved the church some money from getting the tire fixed. At the same time he might not think it's too funny so pray for me :)
I've been trying to run every morning for exercise since we have a high school track a quarter mile away from our house. I am super proud of myself this week because I got a 5:48 mile. Much better than the 6:48 which was the fastest I ever got in high school. I guess the mission and the extra weight I put on hasn't slowed me down too much :) Speaking of weight, I think I have eaten more in this area than any other area but I have still lost 10 lbs here. I'm all the way back down to 160... I used to be at 172 :/
I think I told you a few week/months ago about making a knife out of a railroad spike at one of our members homes. Well we went to eat dinner at their house this week and we finally finished making it :) I think it's a pretty dang sweet knife + project. Also, while we were there, we ate something I've never tried before in my entire life and never really planned on trying. Angus shot a squirrel for us, so naturally, we cleaned and cooked that sucker and ate him. So now I know that squirrel tastes better than rabbit and deer :) I guess you just have to get past the fact that you are basically eating a rat. Mom always told me that serving in Missouri would be like serving in a foreign country. I guess she's right ;)
We have a member who is getting a little old and needed some help painting his garage. So we helped him with that on the condition that he would let us clean/fry/eat the bass that he caught. So we had a super good bass fry and I learned how to clean fish for the first time in my life. Serving in the Boonies really helps you do a lot of "firsts" haha.
So, I got called to train again. The first time wasn't a super enjoyable experience for me so hopefully this time will be a lot better. There are 4 spanish speaking elders coming in and there were 4 of us spanish speaking elders at the training meeting so I'm praying that that means I will at least be training a Spanish elder. We'll see. 
Anyways, we had to go down to Independence for the trainers meeting and we found a ride there but no ride back (it's about a 90+ mile drive). We were planning on having one of the couples that worked at the temple pick us up on their way back but we didn't have time to confirm because we found out we had to go just the night before. Unfortunately for us, the Temple was closed for cleaning so we had no ride back because the couples we planned on coming back with never came down. So we got stuck in Liberty for pretty much the whole day. Luckily our Branch Mission Leader came down to watch a movie with his wife so they brought us back up :) In the end it turned out to be great though because I got to see a bunch of the families from the Shoal Creek Valley ward that I served in a year ago. And The Bakers even agreed to feed us dinner :) I love the members of the church.
On a spiritual note, this week I read a quote that I really love, from a general conference talk. "There are dozens of rules for success, but none of them work unless you do". Another quote said "The word 'can't' is false doctrine in the Mormon church". For me, these quotes are directly related to faith. Faith is a principle of action, it is an action word. If we have faith that God will bless us for obeying His commandments then what do we do? Obviously we will keep His commandments and as a result will see the blessings that come from doing so. Often times we forget, however, that blessings don't always come immediately or in the time frame we want them. Faith = ABC, Action, Belief, Confidence. As James 2: 20,22 states "But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? ...Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?" We cannot expect God to bless us if we do not put in the work necessary to receive His blessing. At the same time, I know that as we do put in the necessary work, that God will bless us without measure and that through His son Jesus Christ, we can return to live with Him one day. As the apostle Paul says in Philippians 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me". 
I think that just about covers the whole week. With summer here, most of the families that we have been teaching have been on vacations and stuff so missionary work is going pretty slow. We have been spending lots of time doing service though, for members and non-members, so we are still staying busy and doing useful stuff.
Well I love you all. Make it a great week!
        -Elder Nyholm


Sent: Monday, July 27, 2015 7:19 AM
Where to start? This week was awesome. We had a lot of really cool stuff happen. A lot of good memories made. So here goes.
The Coons. We met an AWESOME family named the Coons. They are the daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren of a guy that we work with at the food pantry. They have a farm about 10 miles northwest of Trenton and run quite a bit of cattle. We had a super fun time up at their place, tagged two calves, rotated pasture, Elder Maaelopa touched a big old hotwire and thought his hand got blown off hahaha. And they have some meat rabbits and one of them bites and scratches so they are going to let us take it and eat it :) I'm super excited to be able to go up and see them again. We are hoping that they will want to come to the Nicole Pikus Pace fireside in Liberty on Tuesday. We'll see.
So TomDog and his wife Linda brought us to the Wild Onion for lunch on Tuesday (which is how we met the Coons). Well Tom ordered us some tenderloin sandwiches and sweet potato fries. While I was eating, some random lady came up behind me and asked me about the sweet potato fries and then took some without even asking me hahaha. I was like what the heck is wrong with this crazy lady. I've never seen her before in my life. But it was definitely an experience to remember haha.
We got to go to the temple this week to do baptisms for the dead with one of our recent converts. It was an awesome experience (only the second time on my mission that I've been able to do it). But what was even better than that was that we saw President and Sister Keyes (the old mission president and his wife) there!!!! They flew in that morning to attend a sealing of someone that they taught while they were here and they were flying back out in a few hours so it was a miracle that we were able to see them. I miss the Keyes so much! But it was awesome to be able to see them again :)
This week we took the trek up to Cainsville and went to the Wrights where we killed, skinned, cleaned, cooked, and ate a meat rabbit. It definitely tasted a lot better than our roadkill rabbit. The best part is that now we know how to work with the rabbit that the Coons are going to give us :) Also found out that the heart and kidneys taste pretty good but that I'm not a fan of the liver. Oh! and while we were at the Wrights, Elder Maaelopa wouldn't touch their hotwire fence (which is much less powerful than the Coon's) but then on the way out he went to get in the truck and it touched his butt and zapped him pretty good. It was hilarious haha.
We did a heck of a lot of service this week and really built some bridges with a lot of our potential investigators and with our members. Lots of yard work in the early mornings. It was definitely worth it though.
I was reading in Preach My Gospel this week and there was a part that stuck out to me that said "many voices in the world compete for your attention, and they can easily drown out spiritual impressions if you are not careful". 1 Kings 19:11-13 say "but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. And it was so, when Elijah heard it". Our Heavenly Father loves us and speaks to us, but we must be intent on hearing him if we desire his council. There are so many distractions in the world and we have to be careful that we do not allow those distractions to keep us from hearing the quiet promptings of the spirit. The spirit is essential in everything we do in missionary work and in life in general. So if we cannot hear and understand it, then we are much more likely to walk on paths that we should not. I know that God speaks to us, often through his holy spirit, and that He will always guide us in the way that is best for us in our lives.
I think that's it for the week. I love you all. Have a great week!
          -Elder Nyholm


Sunday, July 26, 2015

From: Vicki
Date: July 22, 2015 at 8:23:02 PM GMT+2
To: (Elder Nyholm's Parents)
Subject: We all loved the cookies

(Elder Nyholm received his box of birthday cookies from his mother.  He had fun sharing them with his fellow elders!)

From: Vicki
Date: July 23, 2015 at 10:20:31 PM GMT+2
To: (Elder Nyholm's Parents)
Subject: Busy at work...
Caught him napping in the wheelbarrow doing service for a member. He truly is one hard worker, that's why this was so funny!!!

From: Christianne Jacobsen
Date: July 24, 2015 at 6:42:54 PM GMT+2
To: (Elder Nyholm's Parents)

Thank you so much for loving and supporting your missionaries. They are good men and we love them.

They have been helping us get rid of piles of logs. This picture is taken from the spot in our yard that was filled with logs and because of their help it is now EMPTY! The one in the middle is my husband, Brother Jacobsen.

Sister Jacobsen
From: Christianne Jacobsen   
(Written to Elder Nyholm's parents) 
Date: July 24, 2015 at 6:48:16 PM
Subject: Your Missionaries hauling wood
Although you cannot see your missionary very well in these pictures you CAN see one of the loads of wood they helped load up and take to the city clean up area for brush. In the close up of the cab you can see Brother Jacobsen driving, Elder Nyholm in the yellow shirt in the middle and Elder Maaelopa in the passenger seat. I still can't believe they got all three of those big guys in the cab of that mini  truck! And it is NOT an automatic.

Thank you for your love and support of these missionaries. They are such good people, we have enjoyed their help and especially their testimonies and insights about their scripture studies.

Sister Jacobsen

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Sent: Monday, July 20, 2015 7:58 AM
Subject: Road Kill
This week went really quick (just like every other week I guess). It was a pretty good and entertaining week though. I've got a few good stories for you :)
So Monday we were driving in the country and ran over a bunny. So what did we do? We grabbed a plastic bag, put the bunny in it, and brought it home. We ended up skinning it and cleaning it real good then we breaded that sucker and fried him up and ate him. We had to throw out the back half of him because the meat was super bruised up, but the part that we ate was pretty yummy. So I'll send you some pictures of that with this e-mail. Yes, I believe I am turning into a redneck up here in the sticks. But hey, rednecks have fun so I'm not too worried about it :)
We had exchanges this week so Elder Taylor (from somewhere in northern Utah) was with me here in Trenton for a day. We had a super good exchange and got a lot done. And it turns out that he has a lot of the same hobbies/interests that I do. He's 6'6" and doesnt play basketball at all. But if he's on your team then he still makes the most points because he just stands next to the rim and picks up all the rebounds and puts them in. He's an awesome kid so I was pretty excited to be on exchanges with him.
I fried fish for the first time in my life this week. It turned out super good and I didn't even have to use tartar sauce with it because it was so good by itself. So I'm becoming a better cook :) Little by little...
We went and did service at Sister Nicholsen's ranch up near Iowa. She asked us to bring some boxes upstairs in her barn so we walked over to it with our boxes and found out that she has like 27 horses there. Well I've never really been around horses at all and everyone else was too scared to walk through them all (because they were all standing in front of the door we had to go through) so I ended up going first. It was super cool because they were all super nice and would just follow us around the rest of the time. I was just really nervous walking in back of them because I didn't want to get kicked, but luckily I didn't so it was all good. And after all we were lucky there were only 27 horses. She used to have more than 100.
On Saturday we went to a free fish fry at the Methodist church. We work at the food pantry in town with some old ladies who are part of that church and they invited us to come. There was super good food and Linda Antle made some dang good sour kraut (yeah, I ate it... and I actually like it. Crazy what the mission does to you). It was kind of weird though because everyone else was looking at us like "What the heck are these Mormon missionaries doing at our fish fry?" But, I didn't really care so we just went around and talked to people we knew and helped clean up plates and stuff. It turned out to be a really good experience and the people in charge of the fish fry were grateful to have our help cleaning up.
 On my Birthday it was POURING rain in the morning. Lighting was striking across the street from us so it was shaking the windows and stuff. It was awesome. I love the storms here so I was standing outside our front door watching it. We have a little overhang over the front so I wasn't getting wet but then the wind started blowing so hard that in like 3 seconds I was soaked from the rain haha. Then we got a bunch of flood warnings and stuff. Trenton is on a hill though so nothing here actually floods, just the highway coming out of town. I heard that some people around town got about 5 inches of rain within about 2 hours. Then the same thing happened the next day. I just hope the weather stays this way so that we never have to deal with real summer heat. We've only had a few really hot days because it's been raining so much.
While on exchanges we were walking up to a house and I saw this guy holding a tiki torch like a spear. I was thinking "what the heck is that looney guy doing". Then all the sudden the torch flew like 50mph through the air and stuck about a foot into a hay bale in front of the guy. So it was definitely not a tiki torch haha. We went up to him and asked him about it and it turns out he was using a native american-style atlatle and atlatle darts (which are about 7 feet tall). This guy makes the atlatles and the darts and now he has started hunting deer with them. He hasn't gotten anything yet but he will soon. He told us that atlatles/darts are what they used to take down mammoths in the day. So we are going to go back and he's going to teach us how to use them/make them. I'm looking forward to it.
We've got a few investigators who I am really excited about. They are progressing pretty well but each of them just has a small little roadblock. 3 of them have quit smoking within the last 2-3 weeks. All of them are super interested in what we are teaching them and really want to be part of the church. So hopefully in the next few weeks I'll be able to announce a baptism or two. We were supposed to have one this coming Saturday but the family hasn't been coming to church so we need to help them a little harder to get here I guess. We'll see what happens :)
This week I read a talk from President Uchtdorf titled "You Are My Hands". Most of you probably remember it but I'd recommend rereading it. But there was one quote that really hit me that said "As we extend our hands and hearts toward others in Christlike love, something wonderful happens to us. Our own spirits become healed, more refined, and stronger. We become happier, more peaceful, and more receptive to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit." I know from experience that this is true. The only way you can find true happiness while on a mission is when you are giving everything you've got to the Lord and his children. Sitting around doing nothing doesn't make you happy, but as soon as you truly lose yourself in service to those around you, you begin to forget your own needs and find joy in fulfilling the needs of others.
Well that's it for the week. I love you all! Make it a great week :)
      -Elder Nyholm