The Rain is Coming Down in Buckets!

Elder Skyler Rushton Selfie

Elder Skyler Rushton takes a selfie

The rain is coming down in buckets. That describes the last three days Perfectly… Thank goodness we have a car now!!! So I did not get transfered, but I did get a new companion! Elder Bennett from Sandy, Utah! Believe it or not, he is my first companion from Utah. Crazy eh? But he is SWEET, he is such an awesome missionary, this transfer is going to be a good one!

So prior to Thursday’s transfer meeting, not really anything happened. Elder Barker packed his bags and the Assistants phoned us to say that we were getting a car! My heart exploded with happiness and I think my feet will be eternally grateful! I don’t think I’ve ever walked so much in my life then I have in the last three months hahaha. But it has kept me in shape… But now it’s warming up so we can go running again. Through the forest! So that will be fun.

Transfer meeting was excellent! I’m going to miss President Tilleman’s trainings soooo much when he leaves in July. He is just so good at being a mission president, it’s crazy! He trained at a recent Mission President seminar and told us that when the work hastened (which started about 10 months ago) we have been having 4X the baptisms, 12X the number of new investigators and about 6X the number of member present lessons. In his e-mail every week President Tilleman sends out, he tells us the numbers from our missions previous week. So I’ve been able to witness first hand the hastening from the numbers point of view and it’s incredible. I wish I could just send you the copy of one of his e-mails, but it’s against the rules; so you’ll just have to believe me!

So Elder Bennett used to sell security systems for Vivint back home and then pest control in Missiouri. He is crazy good at finding, which is awesome because that’s what makes it possible for us to teach! Anyways, so he’s been here three days and we’ve already found 18 new investigators. It’s going to be a good transfer ! So we were out finding yesterday and three times we knocked on someone’s door and they didn’t want to talk to us because their house was flooding. I have literally never seen in rain so hard, for so long. There are rivers in the streets, the sewers are flooding over their grates and the fields are turning into swamps… and it’s still raining today!. Oh well, we have a car so I’m just going to count my many blessings.

We knocked on this really old guys door and from the second he answered it to the second we left, he was giving us a sales pitch for USANA (the multi-level marketing company stationed in Utah!). He tried to recruit us, sell us stuff and convince us that we were going to die by the time we were 30 if we didn’t take the dumb vitamins he was trying to sell us. So we gave him a picture of Jesus and said, “We just want to talk about this guy.” But he wouldn’t stop talking about vitamins, so we just left –haha. Another guy we talked to answered the door holding the sword from Lord of the Rings so that was a little sketchy. Turns out he was just role-playing with some of his friends… it was weird. But he became a new investigator so we’ll probably be seeing more of that stuff this week. But it will make for good stories.

So I figured I would share those two stories with you this week because they made me laugh! On a more spiritual note, I had really cool insight I wanted to share with you all this week! It is Alma chapter 5, the whole chapter. It is one of my favorite chapters! Alma the younger is calling the people of Zarahemla to repentance and he throws down! The spirit taught me the other day that Alma the younger totally knows what to say to the people because he himself used to be one of the “vilest of sinners.” Elder Christofferson told us when he was here that, “You can learn a lot from somone who has had their back up against a wall.” So that made me think of Alma! He is teaching them as one that has been in their shoes and is now the high priest of the church, really the man closest to God on the Earth. There are so many things that he says that I just love so if you really want to feel like you need to repent, read Alma 5 haha. It’s great!

Well hopefully you loved all the details of my week, if you didn’t, you probably didn’t read this far in my e-mail haha. I hope you all know how much I love all you! Being on my mission has really taught me that loving everyone is the key to being happy in life. It has really made me grateful for all of the friends and family that I have back home that I already loved before I came out! When I look in the mirror, I don’t really look all that different (yet, at least haha), but I certainly feel different. And I love it! I am so grateful for the chance that I’ve had to serve my mission thus far and it is hands down the best desicion I have made in my life because it has changed me sooooo much. I know that there will still be parts that suck, and there are definitely days that I absolutely hate being a missionary, but overall I have absolutely loved my mission and the person it is shaping me into! I just thought I would let you all know that!

Have a wonderful week family and friends! May the Spirit of the Lord be with you! Love you all! Bye!

–Elder Rushton The Third

Canadia’s Life This Week!

Skyler and Elder Lewis

Elder Skyler Rushton and Elder Lewis

Hello friends and family! It took me like five minutes to think of a title for this e-mail. Probably the most effective use of e-mail time ever I would think. Haha, anyway… let me just start by saying the Old Testament is jacked up haha. You don’t have to read for too long to realize that there’s quite a bit of crazy stuff in there haha! I’ve read quite a bit of it on my mission, usually just for comic relief, believe it or not. Since funny reading material is pretty limited, the Old Testament does a pretty good job of bringing a smile to my face haha. I just thought you would all like to know that!!

So this week was another good finding week! The last three weeks in a row we’ve found 46 new investigators, so that’s been good. But on transit it is soooo much harder to have member present lessons, it’s crazy haha. We’re doing all we can to keep up with the sisters in our ward, they’re killing it in member presents, but we’re trying to make up for it with new investigators haha. Where I am currently, there are YSA missionaries that take all of the YSA aged people we find and teach them instead of us teaching them. They do the same with us for older people! But the thing with YSA aged people is that they are generally more open than older people and become new investigators easier! So most of our new investigators have been handed off to the YSA Elders and Sisters, which is sad for me because a couple people I’ve found here, they’ve baptized! Oh well, maybe I’ll get to serve in the YSA eventually!

So the YSA sisters gave us an investigator this week that is sooooo cool and solid! He is East Indian and has recently become a Christian; or in other words he decided to believe in Jesus because his old Sikh ways weren’t making him happy. He is such an awesome guy! He believes pretty much everything we tell him and in the first lesson we were like, “Have you ever heard of baptism before?” And he was like, “Umm, I think so. Will you guys baptize me?” To which we responded, “Oh yeah we can!” Haha, he’s great. He’s living in a Salvation Army shelter so to get ahold of him, we call them. Every time during the week I called, they let me talk to him. But when I called on Saturday to confirm his ride to church, the lady on the phone was like, “I can’t tell you if he’s here or not, it’s confidential.” I said, “Lady, I know he’s there. He told me he’s there. He told me to call him. He gave me your number. I’ve talked to him there before using this number.” And she was like, “Sorry, can’t do it.” and hung up on me. Ahh! I was so mad! So he couldn’t come to church because we couldn’t arrange a ride for him because of the dang lady at the front desk! So hopefully we’ll be able to get him there next week.

We also went on exchanges with Elder Spencer, one of our zone leaders, this week. He’s from Zimbabwe but he’s also white! He is sooo cool. He had all these crazy African stories and whenever we saw a black person at the bus loop where we were contacting all day, we were like, “Elder Spencer, go get ‘em!” And almost every time they became a new investigator!  So that day was great; we also ended up on a wrong bus and then ended up in the middle of nowhere before we realized it. While we were walking to try and figure out how to get back to town, Elder Spencer told us some crazy story about some guy in Nevada who hired a bunch of people with guns and is fighting the army. It was super funny because Elder Barker is from Las Vegas and he wasn’t surprised at all haha. We all had a great laugh about it!

In other news, guns, knives longer than 2 inches, pepper spray/mace and tasers are all illegal to carry in Canada. One of our recent converts got assaulted on the street the other day (that’s a story for another time haha!) and used mace to defend himself. When the cops showed up after the attacker fled, they almost gave the recent convert a ticket for using pepper spray! When he told us the story, Elder Barker and I were both like, “Are you kidding me?!” Then he was like, “Yeah, but all I had to do was tell the police that it was dog spray and they looked the other way.” So, that’s how legal stuff goes here I guess haha… aaaanyways. Sorry, I just don’t know what else to say!

Well everybody, I hope you all have a great week! I love all of you very much and I hope you don’t get too bored reading my e-mails!! Haha, I hope you are all doing great and that the Lord is pouring his blessings out on you! Have a wonderful week! Talk to you later!

–Elder Rushton The Third

He is Risen! He is Risen! Christ the Lord was Risen Yesterday!

Skyler Rushton and Elder Sly

Skyler with his trainer Elder Sly

It’s Easter time! Which commemorates the Resurrection of my good pal, Saviour and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. And it has been a very good Easter weekend for us here in Brookswood!

So the biggest story from the week was yet again another Assistant exchange. If you remember my last one with Elder Lindemann around Christmas time, you’ll remember I talked about how he jumped in front of cars to get them to stop and talk to the people in them. Well, Elder Baker (the assistant that came here to Brookswood) jumped in front of a bus. Well, it was actually to get it to stop so some guy he was talking to wouldn’t miss his bus, but still… it shows the dedication I guess?? Haha.

So Elder Baker and the Elder Lieber came to Brookswood and we contacted at the Langley Bus Loop for the majority of the exchange! When Elder Lieber came, he and I broke off and went tracting on Eastleigh crescent which is just FILLED with humble people/druggies (the two are not necessarily the same!)!! It was awesome! In just an hour of running from door to door, the two of us found 8 new investigators. My favourite was a black YSA girl named Titi from South Africa! I told her my brother served in Detroit and she was like, “I got family there!!” It was hilarious haha. One of our zone leaders, Elder Spencer, is from Zimbabwe (he is white though) and LOVES teaching Africans, so he and I are going on exchanges this week to teach her haha. So during the day of our assistant exchange, we found 21 new which was pretty sweet. All of the assistants are beasts. Elder Sly, my dad, was just and assistant and he just finished his mission! He is back in Las Vegas now living the Gentile life!

So on Saturday, we had a stake choir come to our chapel for an Easter performance and we had an investigator or two show up. Afterwards, because it was still light outside, we took our investigators for a walk around the temple. I think my favourite part about serving in Brookswood is that I get to see the temple alllll the time. I am so spoiled haha.

Sunday was excellent too! We had a great day at church and then I had my sixth meal at a member’s home since I’ve been on my mission! It was an excellent Easter Meal and then we visited a part-member family and shared an Easter message with them. The doctrine behind Christ’s resurrection is one of my favourites. For me, I don’t know how you could live your life without believing in something after death. Life would be so sad. The Atonement and Resurrection of Jesus Christ is really the center focus of what brings hope into my life. Knowing that through Him, I will live again, with my family, through eternity. It. Is. Awesome. I’m running out of time! So I’ll bear you my testimony! The Saviour Jesus Christ lives today! He is living, moving, and acting at this very moment! He is real, tangible, physical and he loves us. “And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him: That he lives!” (D&C 76:22)

I love you all!!! Have an awesome week! Talk to you later!!
–Elder Rushton The Third

McDonald’s Saved My Life!

Skyler wearing glasses

Skyler Tries Glasses

So this week was pretty stinkin’ good. Even for being on public transit! Which has been a pretty big hinderance this last week! So we have a zone baptismal date for April 26th and 27th where EVERYONE in the zone is “going to baptize!” So Elder Barker and I were desperatly searching for someone to baptize this month as we flipped through our area book and found every investigator who has ever been to church! Then, we called or dropped by every single one! Now if we would have had a car, that would have only taken us a day. But, we don’t. So it took us all week! Some people hadn’t been taught for four years and didn’t even live in Canada anymore, but the majority of people were just not interested unfortunately.

So that leads me to my story about the title of this e-mail! (aren’t they always so clever?? haha.) So we were out and about contacting former investigators and it was a b-e-a-utiful day! Super sunny! So much, in fact, that Elder Barker (my “fair and delightsome friend” as I like to call him) still has a nasty sunburn on his forehead haha. So anyways, we were walking around and I started to get suuuuuper light headed. I knocked on this guy’s door and I was so out of it, I didn’t even remember what we were there for haha! And afterwards, I turned to Elder Barker and he was like, “Dude, you’re super pale.” Then I was like, “Alright, we’re leaving.” We were SUPER far from home, so I was stumbling all around and Elder Barker had to stop me from falling over a couple times haha. Then we turned a corner and there was a wal-mart and a McDonald’s there! So obviously we chose to go into the McDonald’s! And I got some water! Hence, McDonald’s saved my life haha. I learned that even though we’re out all day and don’t have a car to keep water in, we’re going to have to find a way to take some with us. Which stinks because it’s heavy and we do a lot of walking. But oh well, we’ll get stronger!

Other than that, this is my first week in Brookswood that we hit the standards for our mission! I used to hit it all the time in Penticton, but Brookswood has been more of a challenge. I blame the car situation, but I’m not one to point fingers… We found 12 new investigators and set a couple baptimal dates on doorsteps so that was sweet. Almost all of them have fallen through already, but oh well. WE’LL JUST SET MORE!!! We still want to baptize in April but it’s not looking too good for us right now. We’ll be praying and working for a miracle!

Well that’s about all I’ve got to share with you this week! I love all of you very much! I hope you’ve been enjoying the spring time, I know I have! Have a great week everybody! I’ll talk to you later!
Love,
–Elder Rushton The Third

Priesthood, Prophets, Temples and Jesus

Penticton, Canada

Penticton, Canada photo by Skyler Rushton

This weekend’s General Conference was excellent! The Prophets and Apostles are super inspired every time they address us! The Bishop here, Bishop Towns, promised the whole congregation last week that if they brought any question or questions to general conference, it would be answered by one of the General Authorities. I took this challenge, we had investigators take this challenge and miracles ensued! I had all of mine answered and my testimony was strengthened yet again by the “special witness” of the Lord’s appointed leaders. It was awesome!

General conference was so good. It made me especially grateful of four things: The Priesthood, Prophets, Temples and Jesus! I am so happy that we have each and every one of them available to every single person that lives or has lived on the Earth! I especially loved Elder Holland’s talk, Elder Anderson’s, Elder Oak’s and Elder Christofferson’s especially. They sure know how to throw down and every single one of their words have stuck with me since this weekend!

So the Priesthood… I love it a lot. I think Elder Oaks explained what it is and how we each use it perfectly. Such. A. Great. Talk. The Priesthood is restored today and with it, we can have our lives blessed and return to live with God after this live in our family units. So awesome! I also loved when Elder Oaks said that sister missionaries have Priesthood authority when they are on their missions. I almost wish the sisters in this mission could have been at priesthood session and heard that because they sure go through a lot of crap sometimes. They gave us an investigator last week that we went to teach and when we showed up, all he did was attack how the sisters are so “unreliable”. So we told him what’s up and walked away. What a jerk!

Prophets… are amazing! They hold so many keys, that they are invaluable to us here on the earth today and throughout all dispensations! I love President Thomas S. Monson. Has he seen Jesus Christ? I don’t know, but he certainly is his mouthpiece to us today! I sustain and follow the prophet as closely as I can because I believe that he was called of God to lead us today for a reason. I wouldn’t be on my mission right now if it weren’t for him! And modern day, god given prophets are part of our special message to the world today. How great they are!

Temples hold a special place in my heart. We took our investigator Beth on a church tour last Wednesday and afterwards went into the waiting room of the Langley, B.C. temple. It was an amazing lesson, we taught tithing and the law of chastity, but the temple was the cherry on top. The spirit hit all of us like a wall and Beth LOVED it there. “It’s SO peaceful!” she said! I shared my favorite New Testament scripture with her, John 14:27, and she began to weep. It was such a sacred experience… it was marvelous. Now if she would just get baptized ha-ha…

Jesus Christ, my personal Savior and Redeemer, I can’t explain to you how much my love for him has grown on my mission. To see His hand touch the lives of others through me and his other servants is something very sacred to see. I love the Lord with all my heart and I hope that my love for Him can grow even stronger! But how do we truly “love” the Lord? By doing everything that he has asked of us. By living the commandments, by living a Christ-like life and by doing everything that He would do if He were in our position. He is our advocate and knows each and every one of us PERFECTLY! Oh how I love him!

Well friends and family, I hope this letter didn’t seem too “preachy” ha-ha. I just want you all to know how much I love the Priesthood, Prophets, Temples and my Savior, Jesus Christ. This last week was pretty dang good and this next one should be even better! I love all of you sooooo much! Have an amazing week! God bless you!

With Love!,

–Elder Rushton The Third

 

Skyler has been home this long-

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