Monday, March 29, 2010

Coming Down with the Sickness

Dear Parents
I'm feeling fine right now but i must admit that i do miss getting letters, but the letters aren't bothering me, I just feel like i'm missing something, I had a really good spiritual day yesterday, but right now i just feel a bit empty, i'm trying my best to do what's right but i'm just not happy. it shouldn't be a big deal i just feel that way to day.

So I guess people think i'm talking in code now, well i guess that could be true, so i'll try to explain.

Faulkner is known for writing stream of consciousness books, well in my opinion that's what my last letter was, very many bullet points with thoughts that didn't quite all go together. that's why faulkners got my back, or it maybe the way i write.

So this week I got sick and now i'm better, but it's not fun being sick. i had the "cocococky" virus or that's what the doctor told me it was i don't know, I know is that I had a Canker soar type thing on the back of my throat and it felt like a cold/flu, so on thursday i basically slept all day and then friday i felt a whole lot better but still not 100% and since then i've continued to feel better and i would say i'm at 90% of what I could be. well in the process of this the lesson that i learned is that God is willing to help but he wants us to do all we can, like president Uchtdorf said in general conference that god is more inclined to help the man who gets out of the cart to push it than the man who just sits and prays. so i went out and i got a myriad of pills and drops and cough syrups, and even went to the doctor to check it out. and i got the news that it was a viris and there aren't pills that can make it go away so just wait it out. so after all that i got home and then slept and after i did all that i could do then God helped with the things i couldn't do myself not to mention he was helping me throughout.

ok so as to give those who are looking for more info. I'm back on the Beach with two Zone Leaders and i'm the "area boy" as thad has put it. i just try to help out where i can, and i think that i'll be leaving after this next transfer which is going to happen in 2 weeks or so. as to where i'm going i'ven't got a clue. yes i'm I'ven't is a word at least i think it is. (i have not)

well spring break i think is over, there haven't been a lot of college people around and the traffic is less. as for the locals they don't really seem interested. Although we were able to have a wonderful baptism this week. Trenton Medina was baptized which was really cool because last time i was here we started working with him and I got to see him baptized. we keep trying to work with our investigators and they seem to be doing alright, it's just the culture down here nobody really does anything, they just all talk about what they want to do, but they don't really have a desire to change. which i don't want to see anybody do that, i want people to people of action. if you say your going to do something then you better mean it, I don't care if you say what people want to hear just go and do. now i'm speaking to myself when it comes to this but i'm trying my best to do what i say and to learn what i need to learn.

so yeah this week was kind of slow in teaching ways but I think i learned something this week, which is progress.

Love Elder Gillespie

Jethroybn i can't believe that Sophia is almost walking, tell her to quit it. and Lincoln Keep up the good work, keep praying. Robyn i'm glad your finding yourself again, i'm trying the same thing, Jethro don't affiliate with anyone but the Lord i don't trust the government anymore.

Jan Ben, Clarks Video was adorable and i miss that little tyke he looks a lot like adam swindlehurst in my opinion so he'll be alright as for Eva i bet she's just driving you guys bonkers but it's not that bad. and your so close to being done with the school year ben how exciting!!! Jan Keep up the good work you've always been like a mom to me.

Toni Ben what an exciting week!!! ben just think of this as the beginning of a transfer, go ahead and start making a transfer plans about what's going to happen. Toni one question? September?

Thad. Best of luck to you during this whole endever with work and such, it must be hard trying to guess what's going to happen, i would say that's like being back in missionary life but more on an individual level rather than with others.

Beetle I miss you and will talk to you soon in fact about 6 sundays roughly

Dad your starting your political candicy? what's that news about?

Mom I Love You!!!

Elder Gillespie

Monday, March 22, 2010

Faulkner's got my back

Hello Everybody

This week has been NUTS!!! first of all we had an amazing Zone Conference where I Learned that right now is the time to be a man of action. that while we might rely on others we need to build a foundation for our self.

another thing that i've learned this week is that the gospel is easy and we as humans want to make it more complex. it's simply
Faith in Jesus Christ
Second Repentance
Third Baptism
Fourth Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost
Fifth Enduring to the End

and when we learn these simple things and act upon them then God is promised to bless us. and while we might think that we don't get enough of those blessings we need to just stop and think about what great things we have in life and all of that comes from God.

and the other thing i've learned this week is that we all have to take a step of faith, that we need to walk into the dark and God will help us in our endeavor to do what he wants for us to do.

so these are the things that i've learned this past week and more importantly since Elder Wood came back from utah from his operation. he is an amazing person and has definitely showed me how to be a better missionary.

one of the other things i've learned is that Scripture study really does make a difference in a day, and it comes down to having the spirit with us at all times which we want to have and have the opportunity to do.

Thanks to all those who sent me Birthday Greetings it really does make a missionary's day.

well sorry this is kind of a short letter I've got a couple of things running through my head and hopefully will be able to write them out when the time comes.

Here i know that God Does answer questions and usually that's through other people and not necessarily the words that they use but what the spirit shows to them, and all that God wants for us in simple terms is to be better in the evening then in the morning and to be ourselves. That's all he asks as we try to be like Jesus he will then help us all along the journey.

I love all of you and want the best for you. and can you believe that General Conference is just around the corner.

this Email is dedicated to William Faulkner.

Love Elder Gillespie

Monday, March 15, 2010

Spring Breaks: Beware the Ides of March

So what is spring break like?...

Well i'll describe what Panama City Beach was before and now, so when i was first here most of the stores and restaurants were either shut down or a skeleton crew was working, at 9 pm the streets would just be about clear of traffic and nobody would be out on the streets after dark, the motels parking lots were empty at all times. etc, etc... basically a ghost town.

Let's contrast that to now, we (Panama City and Panama City Beach) have a population now of about 2 million college students, or that's what the estimate was. and will continue to be about the same over the next 4 weeks, last week it was about 1.1 million and it will stay about the same amount. Now realize that colleges only have week long breaks, so every week a new group of students come to stay at the beach. so with that being said what do missionaries do in a situation like that? we stay away from all thing relating to Spring Break for example, we stay away from the main drag down the beach also called Front Beach Dr. we also stay away from Wal-mart between the hours of 7am to 9pm which only leaves us the opportunity to go there at 6:30 am to 7am. now for some interesting facts about this place, the Wal-Mart on the beach sells more alcohol than any other Wal-Mart in the world. the largest night club in America is located on panama city (Club la Vela). and the list can go on and on.

But among all of this the work is going on. and all of these are not spring breakers. like last week i said our investigators are Larry, Rosa, Chirs and Lindsey, Matt, Trenton, Skylar. these are the ones who are most accepting of the gospel and i think are going to be baptized pretty soon. all of them are amazing and are honest with us and are willing to talk about what's on their mind and not really trying to answer for themselves. and there would have been no way to do this except we have an amazing branch who really want to do missionary work, and who are really trying to help everyone come closer to God through Jesus Christ, the branch wants to feed us and wants us to come over to their house so they can introduce us to their friends and relatives. this is probably my favorite place to be since i've been on my mission, yeah i know i've only been to one other place but still my favorite is here on the Beach.

Now here is my spiritual thought from this week. i've noticed that i haven't really done the best at a lot of things, that i've been "going through the motions" but i haven't really got anything out of it. so i've made a new resolve to try to do the best i can at all the things i'm doing. this whole thing reminds me of the talk about good better best, i'm doing a good thing but i could be doing better and try my best, so while i've now established that i'm doing what's good, i'm now trying to do what's better. or the best. other than that i'm still putting along and doing the best i can and am trying to do better, which is what we are supposed to do. so yeah no real crazy spring break stories, just trying to get by.

so back to spring break every Thursday night Friday and Saturday the traffic to get into Panama City Beach is horrendous it's bumper to bumper traffic for a good 6 miles just trying to get to Front Beach road and on front beach you only go 15 feet every 15 min, so all the natives stay off of front beach from the beginning of March to September, yeah this is most definitely a tourist town.

Janben thanks for the Emails, and Ben don't worry about the email it got to me but now you've got both emails, Jan the kids sound wonderful and full of energy, tell Clark that i haven't seen any Iguanas, but i think i might of seen a few dolphins, also i'm loving the weather that you are describing, and if you can do it, I can do it!

Jethrobyn potty training sounds intense and it sounds like you have a vampire on your hands as well, Jethro make sure you keep Fenimore safe and no more accidents.

Thad, you should find a different job it's not healthy for anyone to stay up all night and then sleep all day, remeber back when you used to sleep twice a day.

Tonibenanna i love you guys so much and anna please be nice to you mom she needs it, and we can have a PARTY when aunty beetle and Crazy Uncle Matt Return. Ben i know exactly what you mean when it comes to taking a job or anything it's like the analogy of God gives us a little plot of land and tell us to do the best we can with it, that how i think about it

Beetle HAPPY FREAKING BIRFDAY!!! !!! !!! I love you guts and all ther rest of you too. and as the southerners say keep on keepin' on, and hang in there like a hair in a biscuit.

I love all those who read this and hope for the best for you,


Elder Gillespie

Monday, March 8, 2010

Definitely Spring Time

This has been pretty much a blessed week not only am i serving with one of my old companions but i'm also serving with a companion who has been companions with my companion so we are getting together just fine, and not only that but we are actually teaching! which has definitely been a new experience for me, but which i'm so glad to have. but it is so much improved.

The reason I'm back here is because Elder Wood is going to have an operation in SLC and won't be here for about 10 days so please keep him in your prayers and so Elder Perkins and I are going to be in charge till he gets back after that i'll probably get moved somewhere again at transfers, my guess is it's going to be back in Chipley but i'm not sure yet. Anyways It's been amazing so far.

so now for some news about teaching we have one investigator who is on fire, she is just picking up the principals and learning the concepts so fast and is definitely been prepared for us to teach. while i've only meet her twice since i got here on weds. she is going to go far, but like always there is something that she needs help with and needs to talk to Heavenly Father, about what to do. she has three little girls and all are adorable. and the mothers name is Rosa. She is just plain and simply amazing.

Another investigator is Matt when i first got here he was very interested and then disappeared then this Sunday he came back for the first time in 3 months which was a miracle and he is ready to make a big step on faith. he wants to learn more and is now here for the right reasons. He is going to do great things in my opinion. i can just see it.

So from these experiences what i've found is that people in general will eventually have to take steps of faith and that is what God wants for us to do. but the great thing about having to make these steps is that he is willing to help us make those choices we only have to look at our options find out what we think is the best idea and then go to Him and wait for an answer, and if we don't get an answer then i guess it's what would be the best for the family or individual. but the overall theme is that he will make sure that you get the right answer, we just have to be open about what it might be. but now i feel like i'm walking on to thin ice right now. So the moral of the story is that God loves us and wants for us to have the most joy possible overall, not always is joy going to happen right when we make the right choice but it will eventually pay for itself many times over.

the other spiritual note that i've had this week is the fact that all people no matter what their ages are, are always looking for a sense of comfort, weather that's from a friend, family member, complete stranger. people want to have a sense of belonging which i think overall comes from god and is shown through other people. so i commit all of you who are reading this to go out of your way to make someones day, whether that's a simple hello or a good embrace. i know that if you do, do it. you will feel happier because you were able to help someone else and in return help yourself.

that's about all I've got to say today besides thanks for the Happy Birthday wishes and for you prayers and support.