Monday, June 24, 2013

"The Lord has the best in mind"

Elder Goates, Elder Woodward and Elder Waidmann
Elder Woodward and Elder Waidmann

So as this is called crazy times you know it is crazy times! Ok its the news! I am training! Oh my goodness! I am so nervous, scared, excited, confused, lost, but comforted all at the same time. Like so here is the deal.  For the past couple of weeks everybody has been saying how I am going to train another brand new missionary this next upcoming transfer and I just kept saying there is no way! I am 18 and I just barely got here and I am not even done being trained yet! So now come to this last week it is Wednesday night. The day of training calls and I am getting ready for bed in the other room and Elder Goates came in and was like "Elder Waidmann, look!" And he was talking about the phone. And I thought okay he is just kidding with me and made it looked like President Calderwood had called us. And what was funny is how about a few minutes right before all of this happened I said to Elder Goates "well it looks like I am not training!" And I was quite positive about that because there are so many missionaries in our mission and so many other missionaries that would be so much better than me to train another brand new missionary. Because hello: I still feel like I just got here! Anyway so back to the phone: he showed me and then I saw it, we had missed a call from President Calderwood. I started freaking out nonetheless and then Elder Goates called him back and then needless to say he asked to talk to me. And told me that I had been called to be a trainer this next transfer. Yep. It was true. I am still so nervous right now! I feel like I still don't know any Spanish, or where I am half the time or the people in the area. But I know that the Lord will help me if I have faith. That is just what I have to have!  So yeah that is what is going on basically! I am super nervous. But I know that the Lord has the best in mind for His Children here in New York and the missionaries here too!

So this week was pretty great! We did a lot of visits these past couple days along with baking cookies for members in the ward that Elder Goates wanted to give them too. Man I must say that I got pretty good at mixing cookies without electronic equipment! I got some good arm work outs! :) Overall though everything is going really well. We went to Staten Island for their restoration concert on Friday and it was great! I had a really good time participating in it with Hermana Pagan! Man she is such a good singer! And Sister Blosil sang too! That was so great! Then we had our restoration concert on Saturday! It went really well!  We all really enjoyed it and the spirit was just so strong throughout the entire time! It was great! I am happy that so many of us were able to feel of the strong spirit that was there and feel the truth of the message that we were presenting. It was a great feeling for sure! The week was good and everything is going pretty great. I am just nervous about tomorrow and well these next two transfers because I have to train a new Elder and I still feel brand new! Ah its scary! But I am comforted in the fact that the Lord has the best in mind for me, my new companion and His children here in New York! And also Elder Woolley is training a new Elder with me too! I saw him at the trainer meeting this week and we were sooooooooooooooooooooooo excited to see each other!!! We like raced down the hallway and gave each other the biggest hug and just were so happy that we were doing this together! :) It was great! 

Here is the scripture for the week. It is found in the Book of Mormon in Alma 38:4-5.  It says  (4)"For I know that thou wast in bonds; yea, and I also know that thou wast stoned for the word’s sake; and thou didst bear all these things with patience because the Lord was with thee; and now thou knowest that the Lord did deliver thee. (5) And now my son, Shiblon, I would that ye should remember, that as much as ye shall put your trust in God even so much ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day."

I love you all so very much!

Love, Elder Waidmann

Sunday, June 23, 2013

"The Lord puts these awesome experiences in your life"

Well hello everyone!

This week has been really good and bust and crazy but good! It has gone by pretty quick! Everything in New York is great! I am glad that all of you are doing well! Today is Chris' 20th birthday!!!! Crazy huh!!!! Really cool though! :) Anyway! This week I got to go on an exchange with Elder Hernandez in my district and that was so much fun! We had a great time together and did some sweet stuff! We have been advertising our English class a lot because not as many people are coming and we really want to help out the community and find people to teach! I am glad that you are all doing well! That is just fantastic! Everything here is pretty sweet! The work is tough but good! Also we have been working in the elliptical a lot which is how we don't have areas anymore and our entire district has the same area and that has been really cool! There is a park that we go to now often that always has people and most importantly families! That we get to talk to which is really cool! I really like that! It gets me a chance to talk to people without them running away :) Because we are at a park! So that is way cool! :) On Saturday we played soccer with a bunch of members and youth from our ward with a bunch of Hispanic dudes and man they were so good! I was like sooooo this is how you play soccer!!! But guess what!!! I scored 2 goals!!! Like crazy huh!!!! So that was pretty sweet! I felt kinda accomplished when I did that!! Haha just kidding! But it was a lot of fun though and we are starting to get noticed in the community more which is totally and completely what we want! I mean there are thousands of people around us but we are trying our best to help others see that us missionaries are normal too! :) So that is really cool! And we are advertising a concert that we are doing centered around the restoration and that is going to be super awesome!!! It is this Saturday and Sister Blosil is coming to sing at it!! Wooo! So stoked! Elder Goates is singing too like a boss!! Because if I haven't said this before he was an opera singer back at BYU before he left and he was going to be in vocal point! How cool is that?? So needless to say he has an awesome voice! :) So that is going to be great! I am way excited for it! 

And also I had an awesome experience today when we were doing our laundry! SO I was sitting there about to pull out my conference ensign and read that when all of a sudden I heard Brandon Heath playing on someones phone. I was like, what the heck!! Then I realized it was some ladies phone in the laundromat and I just though that was so random! And then Elder Goates was like you should go talk to her and I was heck yeah I am! So then it turned into about a 40 minute long conversation about Brandon Heath the gospel and her life! SO cool! She said that she wants to come to church soon which would be so cool! :) I really hope that she does! The other Elders who are English would teach her and her family if they become interested but I am so glad that I love christian music because if I didn't I wouldn't have been able to have that experience! It was so cool! I loved it! It is cool how the Lord puts these awesome experiences in your life to lift your spirits! I don't know if she will be interested to learn more at all but I got to plant the seed of faith and hope within her and I hope she felt something different as I testified to her about the church. I love you all so very much! Thank you for all of your prayers and support!!!

Love, Elder Brandon Lee Waidmann

Monday, June 10, 2013

"Time is precious here"

Well hello there everyone!!!

Life is good here in New York! What is crazy is that it is dumping rain out here!! Like what the heck!! It is June 10th for crying out loud!! Haha it is great though because I love the rain so much! The missionaries here aren't a big fan of the rain because it rains so much but hey! I love it! So that is the update on the weather I guess!

Ok so life here in the mission is great! I am loving New York and trying to enjoy every day that I have here because the more I think about it the more time is precious here because there is only 2 years that I have to dedicate service to the Lord! So this past week has been really good! It has gone by fast but slow at the same time! Kinda interesting! But it has been really good! :) So on Wednesday I went on an exchange with one of my Zone Leaders Elder Eggleston and that was so much fun! I go to go to Staten Island for the day and it was incredible! And I just loved it! I got to drive for the first time and that was so cool! I drove to Staten Island for our exchange because Elder Eggleston was making a phone call and so that was sweet! It was kinda weird driving after not driving for a few months but it was sweet! The day was awesome with him! I had the incredible opportunity to do some service for Hurricane Sandy clean up and that was just so awesome! I loved it! I just love being able to do service! It makes me so happy and oh man it was just so great! That day was a lot of fun! And man! Staten Island has got some sweet real estate there!!! Holy cow! It is crazy! These people are LOADED!!!! Haha so it was a good day with him and this week was pretty good!

The Staten Island Spanish missionaries are having an activity called a restoration concert and it is a lot of songs and a narration between them focused around the restoration, and Hermana Pagan one of the missionaries asked me to sing with her for it and i was like uuuuhhhhhhhhh.....if you really need me to! Because I really don't think that I am that good of a singer! And it is true! But anyway she wanted me to sing with her so we practiced for it on Saturday and oh man it was great! She sings so good!! And we are singing Yo Se Que Vive Mi Senor, which in English is I know that my redeemer lives! Boom! One of my favorites! So that is cool! And what is great is that she just has an incredible voice so I just like letting her kinda drown me out haha :) So what was so cool about that is that we got to practice with a Sister in the Midwood ward area who just so happens to be Sister Blosil. And by Sister Blosil I mean Jenn Blosil and if you don't know who that is yet go to the EFY CD in 2011 and listen to the song "Take it Home" yep that is her! MY GOODNESS!!! MIND BLOWN!!! She is so incredibly talented it is just insane! It was so cool to here her sing and play the piano! Just crazy! I have always loved her music and her voice and then bam! I get to meet her and she is a missionary here! Like what the heck! Crazyness! So that was so much fun!

Ok so yesterday church was great as always! I love it! And a guy from another ward who went to his mission in Brazil and only speaks English and Portuguese  (uh not sure if that is spelled right haha) came to our ward and spoke in Spanish and it was so good! He talked about inviting others! And seriously that is what the purpose of missionary work is! All we can do is invite! we aren't here to force people to accept the truth! We are only here to invite them to add to the truths that they already know! And ultimately we are inviting them to receive happiness! It is so cool and I love that! Because this is a message of joy and happiness! I love that about the Gospel of Jesus Christ! It is so simple but when we do all that we can to live it and love it! We are happy and we get to share that joy with others! It is just wonderful! The love of the Savior is an incredible thing and I am so grateful for Him and our Heavenly Father! I love you all so much! Please keep praying for the people of New York to be humble and willing to receive this wonderful Gospel we have. Most importantly invite others to know! You never know until you ask! :)

Elder Brandon Lee Waidmann

Monday, June 3, 2013

"God shall be with you forever and ever"

Hello there everyone!

So it is preparation day once again! But not on Tuesday! So I hope that all is well with you! I miss you all so much and I hope you all aren't having too much fun without me! The mission life is great! Loving it! Man the weather here has been absolutely crazy!!! Like seriously though it is just insane! This whole past week has been like death heat and an insane amount of humidity! Oh yeah! Yum! I love humid weather! Haha not! It is so humid we go outside and I describe it as getting punched in the face but a hot wet towel haha. So try to imagine that one :) Haha just kidding! It really isn't too horrible though! I mean hey I only get to enjoy this amazing sticky weather for two years right? So I might as well love it while I can! :) What was crazy today though is we get outside and boom!!!! Dumping rain! It was raining a bunch! And now it is sunny and super humid. Like yeah weather is very random! :) Haha I am loving it though! It keeps me on the spontaneous side I guess :)

So this past week has been pretty good! I am not sure if I said this last week but when Elder Goates and I were on a train all of a sudden this guy walks in and starts talking about how he isn't a begger or anything and then he just started singing! and then boom! I realized WHAT THE HECK???!!!??? I KNOW THIS GUY!!!!!!! I couldn't remember from where though exactly at first and I was trying to remember and then it clicked! He auditioned for American Idol! Boom! It was just crazy because I was thinking "Dude I definitely have seen you on TV!" It was pretty crazy! I was gonna talk to him but then he left! Ah! So anyway everything else is going pretty good! We are now in week 4 of the transfer and it is crazy! This week as a district we are starting our elliptical activities and I am so very super excited for that! I really hope as we continue to work hard we can find people who are searching for the truth of the Gospel. I mean that is what I am here for right!! :) I am glad to be here! Yes it is quite tough a lot but I am trying my best to continually be positive and have a good attitude about everything! New York life is interesting. There really is nothing quite like it. Very different from anything else that I have ever experienced but so good at the same time!

We are trying to find some more people to teach and to help and serve and I really hope we can continue to do so! I am glad that I am here! I know that I am here for a reason or many reasons! I just want to be the best that I can be to help those who need it! I love being a missionary. It really is so weird sometimes to look at my nametag and see Elder Waidmann. I am just like hello! I am a missionary! I have to remind myself every so often! :) I love it though. Most importantly I love our Savior Jesus Christ. he has done something for us that we couldn't do ourselves. He was perfect and yet choose to suffer for so many people who are imperfect. His love is infinite and I hope I can develop just a slight little bit of that love for everyone here in New York. I am so glad to have this knowledge. It makes me so happy to know that I always have someone to lean on who knows how I am feeling always. I love my Savior so much and also my Father in Heaven. He is such a loving God who just wants to be happy in life. And the way to true happiness is following His son. It is so simple but yet so true! I love that I know this because as I think about it I really am truly happy. I love life! It is beautiful! It is tough but overall so amazing and worth everything that we go through. We have trials to help us progress I know this to be true with all of my heart. I read something by Richard G. Scott in an Ensign this week and it seriously describes why we have trials so well. I LOVE IT!!! It reads:

“Just when all seems to be going right, challenges often come in multiple doses applied simultaneously. When those trials are not consequences of your disobedience, they are evidence that the Lord feels you are prepared to grow more. He therefore gives you experiences that stimulate growth, understanding and compassion, which polish you for your everlasting benefit."

It is so true! I love this so much! And scripture of the week! The last part of doctrine and covenants 122:9. It reads" Fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever".

Love you all so very much!!!

Love, Elder Waidmann