Monday, July 17, 2017

I've been here a year already?!

What up dear family and friends!?

Man time has just flown by. I have officially been a missionary for 1 year! It's seriously just needs to SLOW waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyy down! The saying that time flies when you're having fun has become such a reality for me. I am so grateful to turn it up a little bit, and see what the Lord has in store for year 2. There is so much work to be done, and I am so grateful to the Lord for allowing me to participate. Just trying to live in the blessing.

Had a couple really cool miracles this week! We found one new Investigator this week named Ryan Duncan. He is 28 years old. He is so so so HUMBLE and I love it! It makes everything so much easier when teaching him. He is so sensitive to the Spirit! Which I shouldn't be surprised because he is so HUMBLE! He has been listed as a registered "Genius" by a psychologist which makes it evern cooler! Haha...He said he can read a “ thousand words per minute." Man's a legend. We then asked him how long it would take him to finish the BOM. He said "six to eight hours!" And that is with taking notes! So excited for this kid. Anyways we met with him for the first time this past week and set him with a baptismal date for August 12th. What a miracle.

Hayden is doing okay. We are giving him a couple weeks to study and ponder about what he has learned so far. It's cool because it's like the Lord knew Hayden was gonna take time, and so he gave us Ryan in the meantime…miracle!

Had a "Christian Scientist" kid come up and tell us that he thought Christ was an "Alien." And that God is the "Sun". The moment he said that I mean I just couldn't take this kid seriously. The whole time we (he) was talking about "God and Sun". The whole time Brian Reagan was going off in my head: "The Big yellow one is the Sun! The Big yellow one is the Sun!" Good times.

Great Studies this week in 2 Nephi 2! Talks a lot about divine law, and how God has given us the ability to "act, and not be acted upon." And Lucifer didn't want that. That's one of the reasons he lost. There are two kinds of people in this world. There are objects who go to be seen, and then there are agents who go to see.  Love the Council we receive from Lehi to his sons.

The Savior wants to be our friend, to let him we need to be his too!

Love, Elder Judd

Monday, July 10, 2017

New Mission President and the 4th of July!

Hello All!

Hope every one had a great 4th! We had an awesome one here…spent it at a member who is rollin' in it so that was a blast. They are the nicest people. Had a great one, but a slow one. We roll like that some times.

Had a really good lesson this week with Hayden! We plan to set him with a date this Thursday so pray pray pray! He keeps on using the word "Research" when talking about how he will come to know it:/  If you have ever served you know why that worries us! We just stressed Prayer, the BOM hard! He seemed to understand, and the spirit was strong. We hope he felt it!

Got asked by ANOTHER woman if we wanted to join a "Sex and Drug Party" tonight. That was whack. Man this world is evil. And scary. But it's okay cause Athletes Adjust right?!;)

Was reading in Ether 12 again and got sooooo much on Faith! We must have a "Paradigm of Faith" is what I like to call it. If not, no "real power" will be obtained.

President and Sister are awesome. I love his vision. He is focusing so much on "us". 2 Nephi 2:30. the "good part.”

30 I have spoken these few words unto you all, my sons, in the last days of my probation; and I have chosen the good part, according to the words of the prophet. And I have none other object save it be the everlasting welfare of your souls. Amen.

He is so concerned  about us and about how we are doing. Not as much with Numbers and Baptisms etc.  Their theme Scripture is that one. But also they are focusing on D&C 4:4. With the Sickle being the BOM. So Powerful. DISSECT THAT VERSE!

Thanks for sending pictures.  I love getting them.  I love the pics. It's soooooooo busy in a YSA ward. Especially this one.

3 Things President Felix taught:

1.) Invite
2.) Invite
3.) Invite

Mom their is much I could tell you what your missionaries need to know.

It's not about you anymore....It's not about you anymore. The MTC is where you learn how to be a missionary. To do missionary things. The field is where you become one. Are they ready? The qualifications for the work: D&C 12:8. Don't just do missionary things. Be a Christlike missionary. They can memorize PMG, know every lesson, answer, and question to ask. But if they cannot find the courage to open their mouths all else fails. All they can do is invite. Every time you do, you have succeeded.

God Bless you all!

19 And there were many whose faith was so exceedingly strong, even before Christ came, who could not be kept from within the veil, but truly saw with their eyes the things which they had beheld with an eye of faith, and they were glad.

Love, Elder Judd
 The ward 4th of July BBQ
 At the BBQ
 President and Sister Nakken

President and Sister Nakken met my mom and dad at the MTC!

Monday, July 3, 2017

SLO YSA's and Parker for a companion

Hello you Wonderful People,

Had a great one this week! San Luis Obisbo YSA is the pace to be! These kids are so amazing, and they all teach me so much. I love working with young single adults. Along with the children they indeed are the future. A chosen Generation. A lot of these kids have some pretty big decisions to make at this point in their life. And that being said they NEED to learn what it means to rely on the Savior, and have the companionship of the Holy Ghost with them by their side. Just like we all do. But when times get hard, we must always remember to "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto our own understanding." And it ain't easy. It was never intended to be.

So the Sisters left us with two Investigators, and a lot of LA's which is awesome! There are about 150 members in our books. But in reality there are about 450 not recorded! Wow...Time to get to Work:) Doesn't that just make you Happy?! That there is so much work to be done?! Such a blessing.

One of the Investigators named Hayden came to church! He is sooooo cool, and asks a lot of good questions. Deep questions! We just gotta make sure his intention is right, which will then help the spirit to work on him…because remember motive matters!

We have issued the whole Ward a challenge to read the BOOM by August 16th, and to highlight all the Christlike attributes/characteristics. Sound familiar? That is the same challenge we were issued by President Felix who is now home. We need to get these kids' testimonies where they need to be before they can help others build theirs.

President and Sister Nakken are here! I have not met them yet but my parents both have at the MTC...(cheaters:)) We will meet them both this Wednesday at a Zone Conference! I’m so excited!

Love this quote by President Hinckley speaking about missionaries and I testify that this is true..."They are healers among the people, serving in the cause of the Master Healer.”

My new Comp is Elder Alder from Idaho and I nicknamed him Parker. Just imagine Parker with a tag on. He is HILARIOUS, and I am just happy with my life right now. The Joy I am feeling, I cannot describe. I have my struggles every day, but that is a good thing.

Love, Elder Judd
 My District
 My comp and Parker doppelganger
Helping a ward member set up for a BBQ

Monday, June 26, 2017

Good-bye President Felix, and getting transferred!

Hey Gang!

Crazy week this week. Not too much stuff happening right now with our investigators just a lot of change! Patrick and Nicole both came to church this week again and both shared their testimony! It was so cool. It was in Sunday school and the Stake President was teaching because it was Ward Conference. But anyways, he posed a question and there were a lot of hands that went up. And Nicole raised her hand! But a couple minutes had gone by and the Stake President didn't call on her, and we needed her to comment! Such a good opportunity for growth. My comp and I were sitting in the very back row so I made eye contact with the Stake President as he was teaching and pointed to Nicole. He understood the signal and called on her. Then Nicole bore powerful testimony of the power than can come into one's life as they simply read the BOM. She talked a lot about where she used to be, and the progress she and her family has made. The spirit was so strong, and I too received a personal witness that the BOM is the word of God. What a wonderful experience to witness that.

Had a lot of cool experiences this week to go with it. We had our last Zone Conference this week so that was a cool moment. We focused a lot on the Book of Mormon, and Jesus Christ. The Felix's will be missed so much. I have had the chance and great blessing to get to know President Felix pretty well so that makes it even harder to say good-bye. But I will see them both soon when I get home!

Spent a lot of time this weekend saying good-bye to members here because I will be getting TRANSFERRED! What?!?! Yep I'm hittin' up the YSA's for the 4th time! Haha so excited! I will also be hitting my year mark this transfer which is absolutely insane! And so when July 13th comes it will be 1 year from when I started. And the coolest part about it is that I will be going back to SLO where I first learned it's not about me anymore! I am so excited, and it is without fail a tender mercy. I am so excited to get to work with these young people again. And cannot wait to see what the Lord has in store for Elder Judd in San Luis Obispo!

Came across this one in my Studies this week...Study. Apply. Repeat.

I love you,
Elder Judd

 Good-bye President and Sister Felix

Monday, June 19, 2017

Happy Father's Day, Dad!

What Up Fam and Friends?!

Real quick just want to give a shout-out to the old man. Man I love you! Thanks for all you do Dad. I thank my Heavenly Father every day for giving me an example like you. I hope you had a wonderful Father’s Day.

Not gonna lie, this week was rough. Haven't had a week like this in a long time. Elder Judd had a little break down this past week due to the death of member in our ward. Brother Bob Heath will be missed. 89 years old, and he had a stroke. It was completely a surprise. He moved like he was 50 and weeded his garden like my momma. We were very blessed to have served him every Friday for the last couple of months. I was one of that last people he ever talked to. He's my "2nd Grandpa." An ordinary man, who like my Grandpa, learned what it meant to be faithful, and endure. Which led to extraordinary results. He was one of my best friends. And will forever will have a special place in my heart. 

Along with that this week, we had a lot of closed doors, and with that closed hearts. Which is something you do not like to see as a missionary. The love I have for these people here in Lompoc is so great. You see how they are living, even why they are living that way. Then you Invite, and they decline. And then you just think about how much better they could have it. Good, Better, Best. That is what this life is about. It's all just a big game of Good, Better, Best. And in this game, and by His rules…you cannot receive the Better without first giving up the Good. How does this apply to you? That is how Faith works. And then Ultimately God sees our willing desire to change. We then can be on our way to receiving the  "Best." Which we know, just like from Good to Better, to receive the Best requires a little bit more. There is no such thing as something for nothing with the Lord. Aren't we so grateful for that???

Zone Conference is this week so that should be good! The theme is "I believe in Christ." With an emphasis on the BOM. I am about to finish it again so what a great blessing that will be. Man I love that Book. I testify of it's Truthfulness. 
One of my favorites helps when times like these come...

2 Corinthians 4

17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;
18 While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. 

 (1. Smiling cause it's healthy too
 (2. Good looking group 
 (3.  Dabbin' (hope that's still cool)
 (4. Grub out!

 (5. Better looking group

Monday, June 12, 2017

'So many cool miracles...'

Fam and Friends, 

Another great one here in the best BEST MISSION EVER! So many cool miracles wrought from the hand of the Lord so that sure helps a ton! Well it's kinda impossible to do this work with out Him so that is how it should be...Also had the chance to do some more service this week which was a blast. It's my testimony that when you serve people, you find people. How does that relate to you? We're trying to find people to Baptize. What are you trying to find? Counsel, blessings, Answers to Prayers...etc? Cause and Effect. Get out and serve someone, and exercise your faith and heart. Then find something. Which can be anything you desire in faith. (If it be the Will of the Lord of course)

Had a wonderful Sabbath yesterday! We had a really good Sacrament meeting, and an RM spoke so that was really cool to see. Anyways later that night we had a really cool lesson that turned into a New Investigator! His name is Jose and he is 18. He's a referral from a member so that means Baptisms:) The member coached him in Track in HS so that was cool.  We had a really cool lesson with him and really spent time getting to know him, and also taught a little bit of the Restoration lesson. The spirit was so strong. We really hit hard, and told him to pay attention to your "feelings." "Because that is why you will want to join this church. Because of how you feel." At the end of the lesson as we were testifying he talked about how he could "feel it". What a tender mercy that was. We plan to set him with a date this Wednesday when we meet with him. So at 5:30 (UT time) be praying for Jose, and pray for us that we will be guided and directed. 

From this Experience with Jose it makes me think of this Scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants.  We know that all "true Knowledge" in this life is obtained "by the Comforter, through the prayer of faith." Never Underestimate the Power of Prayer, and then the Result of that Prayer that is kindled by Faith. Which for us Missionaries is the Lord's Pattern for Obtaining the Companionship of the Holy Ghost. 

  And let them journey from thence preaching the word by the way, saying none other things than that which the prophets and apostles have written, and that which is taught them by the Comforter through the prayer of faith.

Love, Elder Judd

Monday, June 5, 2017

Another good one in the GCVM!

Hello Family and Friends, 

Had a pretty good one this Week…got to go on a couple of exchanges so that was a blast. Spent a lot of time in Solvang so that is always a blast! Got to play some ball with some more old guys this past Wednesday so that's always fun! Just feel really bad for 'em ya know;) 

Marcy is doing well, but she is still very ill! Her date is for July 8th so pray that she will make that, and get better! We nick named her "Grandma" because she reminds us both of ours! I love her so much, and am really going to miss her. Found a couple new potentials as well so that is exciting. 

My thought for you all this week is in Psalms 103:11

11 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

We learn here that Heaven is far away. A long ways from where any of us are. But we also learn here that The Savior's Mercy bridges the Gap between us and Eternal life. But first we must "Fear him." Recognize that He is. To be this means Humility. Which has been Elder Judd's achilles heel for a very long time. I bear testimony, and solemn witness of the Power that can come into one’s life through the infinite Grace and Mercy of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But that it is heavily dependent on both our desire, and Capacity to "Fear him."  And I believe this "Fear" is a very personal thing. It is not enough to be good. You need to be great. And how you make that Leap comes from Humility. Not from elevating your position by comparing your personal Spiritual Stamina with others. But from "Fearing"...

I love you all!

Love, Elder Judd

Monday, May 29, 2017

One new investigator!

Had a great week this week! Had the great blessing to meet with a lot of LA's this week which was really good because we haven't ever really done a lot of that at all in this area. Met some more drunk people this week so that's something that will always put a smile on your face.  President, and Sister Felix just have a couple more weeks so their time is winding down!

We found 1 New Investigator and she is sooooooooo SOLID!  Let me just say 2 things:

First, our God is a God of Miracles. Second, He really does work in mysterious ways. Marcy Collins has been trying to investigate this church. But she has been married to a long time LA named Mike Collins. Who really is a nice guy, but just never got around to softening his heart. And he was not gonna let her investigate the church "without his consent." To make a long story short, they were both every ill, and 1 week ago Mike Collins passed away. We were then able to meet with Marcy, and set her with a baptismal date for June 24th!  Marcy is 55 years old,  but looks likes she's 70 because of how sick she is. She is really struggling with Mike being gone, but has the faith to move mountains, so that is what is keeping her going. She is so excited. We are in contact with her daily, and meet with her twice a week. It's just a matter of can she stay healthy?  I love her so much, and she is so ready. So pray for her, and for her health especially. Mike is in a better place now, and is most likely cheering her on. She is so excited to be sealed to him, and that is her aim.

Aren't we so grateful for hard times in our lives that can make us stronger?  It makes me think of this scripture in 2 Corinthians 12. We learn in Ether 12:27 this same underlying principle. The Power of the Word!

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10 Therefore 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.

Love, Elder Judd

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Baptisms! Transfers. Happiness

Family and Friends, 

Sorry but it's gonna have to be a quick one...

Had a great Week!!! The Baptism of Patrick and Nicole was AMAZING, and the Spirit was SO strong! It was a day that was hand picked by the Lord. May 20th was their day, and all that is good belongs to them. They are so happy, and now have all motives focused on the Temple! With the new Temple attendance update for missionaries we can go with them their first time to go and do Baptisms! How cool is that?!? They are so so so excited, and that day will hopefully be here with in a couple of weeks!

Transfers are here and I am staying in Lompoc with Elder Deason! It's gonna be a 5 week transfer because this is the Felix's last transfer:( So that is sad, and it will be every hard to see them go. So I'm guessing this one will go quick! Looks like we're just gonna have to continue to find the elect people here in Lompoc to call to Repentance:)

Had some really good studies this week in Sections 40&41 of the Doctrine and Covenants.

The Gospel is right because it is true...Learn the Gospel. Live the Gospel. Love the Gospel.

Love, Elder Judd

Their wonderful family baptism!

My awesome district!

 Community Service Day
A kind family who fed us!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Happy Mother's Day!

Dear family,

It was sooooooo wonderful to hear your voices yesterday.  I love you so much.

It has been an amazing week…a lot of time spent with Patrick and Nicole getting them ready for their Baptism! They are so excited, and so ready. Satan really is trying so hard on them, so PLEASE PLEASE keep them both in your prayers. 

Heard some more gunshots 1 or 2 streets over so that was neat. (normal here in Lompoc...there was a shooting a couple weeks ago about 1 street over so are kinda used to it;)

Had the chance to go on some more exchanges this past week so that is always fun. I was in Santa Barbara for a night so that's always fun.  (place is evil) but the weather was nice!  

We had a really cool Zone Activity, where we all went on a hike with President and Sister Felix. We had to do things blindfolded, and then tied together so that was pretty fun. I got to see some of my past comps so that made it even better!

I hope you all are happy, and have found joy and meaning in the covenants you have made. As I have been reading the Book of Mormon, I really have been thinking about the power of covenants. In the Book of Mosiah, there are two stories of a people being delivered by the hand of the Lord out of bondage. There were a lot of similarities, but also many key differences as well. The people of Limhi, and the people of Alma the Elder were both in bondage to the Lamanites. But because Alma and his people had made covenants and kept them, the Lord was more fully able to show forth his had in helping them escape. Go and read those stories. You graduating seniors - although your report cards might not show it...I encourage you all to get an "A" in "Covenant Keeping." And then watch, listen, and take heed to the blessings that God will place in your path as you keep your promises!

Love, Elder Judd

 Picking it back up...
An awesome snack on the run.

 Hiking activity with President Felix

 Exchanges with Elder Pickett - I played BB against him at Timpanogas HS
Happy Mother's Day Mama!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A Star Wars Wedding

What a week indeed here in the Great California Ventura Mission!!!

Hope you all had an a amazing week just like I did...

Patrick and Nicole's wedding was this week and it was absolutely amazing! We were able to go so that was a special, and forever cherished moment I will remember forever with them. They got married on May the 4th (Star Wars Day) Why? Because they are Star Wars nerds...Jordan our RC who is also Patrick's younger brother was a "Registered Jedi Knight" so he was able to marry them. That was cool for the whole family. Patrick and Nicole both got emotional because 1. The Spirit was there, and strong  2. They both understand that this means one step closer to their baptism on the 20th, but even more, one step closer to something even bigger, and better. And that is the day that they will all kneel together and be sealed as a family for time and all of eternity in the House of the Lord.  What marvelous day that will be!

We had exchanges on Tuesday and Wednesday this week. That was a blast and so many miracles were witnessed. Elder Horman and I on Friday tracted into an 18 year old kid who was walking home from school. His name was Jose and is awesome! Apparently two missionaries ran into him a couple of months ago and never followed up!:(  In the missionary world that is a big no no. Anyways he is already half way through it, and loves it! We gave him another Restoration pamphlet, and set a return appointment with him for this next week. But check it…the next day (Saturday) I told Elder Deason about him and I just kept getting the feeling that we should go over now, and not wait!  He is ready, and ready now. No need for anyone to "wait" in this life to hear the message that we have to share! Anyways we did that exact thing! So Saturday in the late afternoon we went over and met him! We were able to get in the door, and teach him. We did some HTBT, with an emphasis on the Book of Mormon, Baptism, and Prayer. Long story short he felt the spirit, and he committed to be baptized on June 3rd. First lesson. So amazing. So blessed. I received my own witness when we were right there teaching him that the Lord does indeed pave the way for gathering his elect. Jose is a textbook example. He is ready, willing, and hungry for the truth.

That same day we also as a mission had the glorious opportunity to receive a 2 hour training from one of the Lord's annointed. Elder D. Todd Christofferson.  It was incredible.  He is very powerful, and very inspiring. And very sharp as well.  That man's got this whole life thing figured out…you knew the moment he walked into the room, that he  knows the Savior. He spoke a lot about divine law, and the "how and "why" of making Christ the center of our lives and building up from there.

God bless you all.  And it is my prayer that He will show you, as you act in accordance to his will, what can come into one's life as we truly learn what it means to have a life built and centered on the Lord Jesus Christ and His gospel. May we all take up our cross daily, and follow Him. Then stand with him, and not run when things get hard. For that is when we are truly tested. Will you run and hide? 

I am loving my mission. Because I have found true Joy. 

Love, Elder Judd