Tuesday, July 15, 2014


Hey everyone!

This has been a great week.  Basically the big event of the week was zone conference with President Ivory.  I'll tell ya, I was a little nervous/excited to see what would be happening.  Basically to say it short, it's gonna be awesome!  There are a lot of things that are going to be different but it's what we need at this time.  President Ivory is really really focused on balance.  A lot of time in this mission, missionaries get burned out, especially in the summer, because all they do is contact outside for hours and hours on end.  President Ivory wants to stop the "banging our head against the wall" and switch it up.  In our mission we are more focused on less active and active members then ever before.  It's going to be really good for all of us to get to know the branches better and really connect with the members.  There was so much energy at zone conference it really pumped me up.  I feel like It brought my greenie fire back.  Not that I lost it, just helped it burn a little higher.  I've heard that is what training a new missionary does but I defiantly felt it this past Wednesday.  We are going to be "The MOST positive mission on the planet!"  President Ivory is kinda working on a motto/ saying for our mission and it is going to be something like that. 
I dont even know how to describe this over email.  Our mission is cracking down a little more.  He really believes in being exactly obedient, and once we are that is when he will reward us with things such as cool P-days and trying new things out.  I think my highlight was when I got to interview with President and Sister Ivory.  We were just able to talk and it just flowed and really seemed like they cared. We were able to talk and share, they understand. So to wrap up my interview with Ivory, we kinda were just talking.  He looks at me in the eyes and says something like "I need you elder Cooper.  I know you are an obedient missionary and try hard.  You are an elder that I want to be able to point out and say, look what this elder is doing, follow his example.  I need a strong core of missionaries to be able to help lift the mission so we can lift the church here.  Keep up the good work"  So that was kinda paraphrased, but that is the jest of what he said!  I cant even tell you how many different prayers were answered and how on fire that made me feel.  He said it in a way that even though I might not be the best, I wanted to be, it made me want to step up, and fit the shoes he has in mind for me.  So ya I really like President Ivory.  He has such a great vision for us and this mission.  Expect to hear great things.

After zone conference elder G and I had exchanges with the zone leaders.  I went with elder C.  We really got to work.  The thing I wanted to work on was going about doing good, a section from preach my gospel.  The day started of with a great contact!  The first person we talked to listen to us and gave us their number and wanted to come to church!  It has been a long time since a day had started out as good as this.  For the rest of the day we were out side a lot!  We tried to set up lessons with members and less actives, but they ALL canceled!  So that left us with a day of contacting.  Towards the end of the day we were kinda near G and M's house, so I wanted to stop by, and give them some of their favorite juice and just see how they were doing.  Well we were planning on a quick drop by and it turned into a lesson with them and it was super great. 
They just love the missionaries so much!  They invited us in and just took care of us haha.  So they are still doing super great.  When we left M left us with two huge bags of fruits!  I was really excited to eat them, because the fruit here can be amazing!  Elder C and I are about 5 minutes away from home when C turns to me and says "elder I think we should give this fruit away to those two newly wed couples over there"  So we did!  We kinda second guessed it at first, but I remember what you said mom... or I guess what Joseph Smith said. 9 times out of 10 the first thought that comes to your mind is from the spirit.  So we gave the fruit away to the young newly wed couples.  It felt really great and their smiles were almost glowing, I thought.  It helped end the night with a bang!

The Smiths
So I have a new set of missionaries in my district.  The Smith's!  They are a senior couple from I think Oregon.  They are so legit.  I've only known them for a couple days and they are already my heroes!  They are the modern day Lehi family!  They have sacrificed so much to be here with us.  We often think that it is only hard for the young missionaries to serve... but it takes just as much faith and courage, I think, to go as a senior couple.  The challenges are similar.  They are doing it and it is difficult.  It truly is amazing to me and they are just great.

The key to being a great missionary is having the spirit. That requires you to do the little things everyday and keep trying when you "fall short"  You can be 100% fluent in the language you are called to learn and know "all" the answers, but without the spirit, none of that matters.  It's time to get going and let the things Heavenly Father has in store fall into place.  That is kinda where I am at currently. :)

Thanks for all you do!  Sounds like you are all super busy but having a good time!  Keep it up and know I love you and am praying for you! :)

Elder Cooper

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