Monday, November 9, 2015

"I'm Done"

Well this is the last time ill be writing as a missionary. I dont know how to feel. Im extremely grateful for the chance ive had to serve here in Ecuador. The lessons Ive learned here are priceless and countless. It might seem to most people that I just had a really neat foreign exchange and got to learn about a new culture and language, or maybe that I just wasted a bunch of my time and money. But I know that it is not the case, that I have been in the Lord`s service, as a representative of His church and His life. I have come to learn and understand things that I will never be able to put in words, but they are truths that I will never be able to deny. I know that our testimonies can and will not grow with out trials of our faith. And that when we are in hard times those are the best times to come to know, and love God and feel of His love. When we are suffering we can be closer to him than any other time. I know that because Ive experienced it. Im super grateful for the people ive met and have taught here. This is a beautiful country with beautiful people and I look forward to seeing where all the seeds Ive helped plant lead.

This coming week we will have the baptism of a sister Rocio and her daughter, we were planning to have them baptized this last week but something came up in her interview but its all good shes super prepared. Weve been teaching her and her family (theres another son and some uncles/cousins who are next up too) for quite a while, her progress has been slow but she has a strong conviction of the truthfulness of this work. Her life has been super hectic all the time weve been teaching but despite the trials, which usually make people give up, she has become even more and more excited to be baptized. Im happy that well get to see them baptized. This is gonna be the best week of my mission. We will see you guys in Ontario International Airport at 145 pm in 8 days (well see who gets the first hug). till then stay handsome and please take care. CIAO I MIEI CARI FRATELLI, LES QUIERO BESITO

Love Elder Crisp

I got made a cake, an awesome family did it,
PS Thanks for telling everyone to tell me happy birthday!

Monday, November 2, 2015

November 2nd, 2015

Hey how we doing what can I say were killing it out here, I want to wish a happy dead people day to everybody. like smokey robinson said i love it when were crusing, well were definitely cruising along out here we met some some really cool families this week, its cool when you meet people and you set an appointment at 2 o clock and then they tell you not to eat lunch that day cause theyre gonna through food at you and it turns out the food is way super good and they accept the message afterwards and everything. Its really cool, thats what happened with this couple Cesar and Joana theyre way tight. Those people wont lose their reward (DC 88:89-90). Were still working with the same people that had really good testimonies growing from before, it was kinda disappointing with the main man Jhon he was finally prepped and passed his interview for baptism, and they made him start working on Sundays and we tryed to help him with that but till the end of december his minds set on not even attempting to change his schedule to be able to attend church, and be able to get batpized. But its all cool were animated and it looks like we will have at least a couple baptisms before I get out of here well see what happens. The church is true, God lives, He answers our prayers and fasts, He forgives our repented sins and is able to guide us all to make the right decisions that lead to eternal life. the missions the best.

Love Elder Crisp

Ecuador with their rice this field goes for thousands of miles of just rice freaking rice.

Monday, October 26, 2015

October 26th, 2015

This week a lot of good things happened, and friday we had interviews with President that went well, and also the ward had a huge baptism night of kids, 2 of which were convert baptisms from part member familys we helped to bring back to church. We also had a cool mormon helping hands project saturday with the stake we cleaned up some roads it was an absolute blast. Were still seeing progress with some investigators Jhon is way animated right now for baptism but struggling with commandments, were gonna have the baptism of the pita family real soon too.

I got to the end of the Book of the Mormon and spent a good time pondering on the last few verses of Moroni 10, 32-33. If we deny ourselves of all ungodliness and love God with all heart then we can be made perfect in Christ. I think thats one of the most powerful verses and themes about the Atonement of Christ, the fact that we can be perfected, we can undenibly know the power of God, we can be sanctified through accepting the blood of Christ. I know that it is true. Maybe sometimes we forget what God has done for us, or we can say He hasnt done enough to show me he exists. I cant prove he exists, Im not sure if he listens, if hes there. But verse 32 is way too clear. If we just try to love God and follow him, that will be followed by the clear manifestation of his power. All of that and a lot more is possible by the blood of Christ. Those are really bomb verses to study i recommend them. Well thats all for now.

 Love Elder Crisp

Monday, October 19, 2015

October 19th, 2015

It has been a good week not much time to write but things are going well with our investigators. Something ive been pondering about a lot lately is that we cannot inherit Gods kingdom being pacifists about what we believe. Those who are not valiant in the testimony of Christ are those who are given terrestrial glory (D&C 76:79). I'm sure that doesn't mean just to have a strong testimony but to share it and to defend it and to strengthen it always. God expects a lot more out of us that we think sometimes, that duty to share the gospel and be valiant is for each and every one of us. Pass well you all.

Love Elder Crisp

Monday, October 12, 2015

October 12th, 2015

Things are going pretty well with investigators, were supporting abunch to help with a few commandments but weve seen a bunch of progress in, for example, jhon suarez and the pita family. Their testimonies were definitely strengthed this last weekend. They need to make some changes in their lives but are getting close to being ready for baptism.

This last weekend was stake conference of here Duran Norte, and they reorganized the presidency so we got to listen to Elder Waddell from the 70. The man is super powerful, he actually told us that hes going to be in the presiding bishopric, im not sure if thats been announced yet. One of the highlights of what he spoke on was about the prophetic priorities of today. He shared with us the revelation that the first presidency has had, and trained all the general authorites. It was definitely the underlying theme of general conference, and now it makes even more sense why. President Monson received revelation for every one of us, for how we, as the whole church can progress in our faith in God.

The answer is Sanctify completely the Sabbath Day. I think 80% of the talks this year at least mentioned that. That is what God wants for his church right now. As Waddell shared, we have a duty to act upon what the prophet says because we know that God appeared to a young man, and established his church through that young man. How we act on that knowledge, whether we choose to be obedient or no, will determine our destiny. We need to reach out and rescue the lost sheep, and sanctify more the sabbath day.

I feel super fortalized in my testimony that this church is divinely led by revelation, God calls men to lead his church, Christ lives, this is the truth and I know that independent of what any of you believe, nor what anybody else on this planet thinks.

Con amor,
Elder (S.) Crisp

Monday, October 5, 2015

October 5th, 2015

Conference weekend was way good, like always. I got a bunch of answers. It was cool we got to go to the temple Thursday and I was impressed in the Celestial room of quite a few things, about our investigators and whatnot, but also about a couple questions I should have in mind during conference. Both of the questions were answered so specifically that I cannot deny what is it that God wants me to do. I would not have caught or payed attention to the council that I recieved if God had not told me to look for them. I liked a bunch the guidelines given conjointly about following the Spirit, improving little by little, using the beautiful gift of the Atonement and repentance to do so, and simply loving God by following his plan laid out for us. What will stay written on my mind is the solemn, direct voice of Gods prophet, his counsel and warning- Keep the Commandments. They are not obstacles, they are for us. It was way good conference, And it was cool that a few of our investigators could enjoy it too. Were way pumped this week to keep working, this week will be cool we have stake conference and at least one 70 will be here, a bunch of power here. Have a good one!

Love, Elder Crisp

we made tacos after the presthood session it was super clutch. And I ran into the main man Eder who got baptized last may, hes doing super well, attending conference in a suit like a champ

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

September 28th, 2015

This week was most excellent, we had miracle after miracle happen. It was pretty wild, and we had a lot of help from fasting yesterday with investigators. And we also went to Guayaquil thursday for a training with an area seventy Elder Calderon, it was one of the best conferences Ive had in the mission. I had a little bit of personal revelation right before we started, I opened my scriptures to Mormon 1, and reading from verse 15 he says that he, being somewhat of a sober mind, was visited by the Lord, and tasted and knew of Jesus. In spanish it says "serious" instead of sober, so I took that in that moment that to be "visited by the Lord" we must be serious by nature. Thats something that Im not as everybody knows, but I am a little better now haha. But after noting that, in the 4 hours Elder Calderon talked to us, he mentioned various times being serious. Making all life decisions with seriousness and circumspection. Treating every moment as a missionary seriously. Not being boring in life but taking life seriously. Hes a serious person Elder Calderon but hes still one of the funniest and most animated people Ive ever met, but he still teaches really effectively, he really pumped me up for the rest of my mission. More than anything to keep working and suffering and sacrificing. Because thats how we come to know the Lord, through passings through trials.

So with some of the investigators we have, the spirit definitely was present. We have been teaching a family, the Pita family, who is a single mother and her two kids. They have been listening for a while, and have read a bunch from the Book of Mormon, and have progressed a bunch, but had always had an excuse Sunday in the morning. Well in the middle of the week she told us something that had happened the night before, she was in bed and felt like someone sat down at the foot of her bed. She didnt see anyone but felt the words in her mind 'Im waiting for you at my church'. She told us that she took that as a machete for not applying what weve told her, which she does recognize as the Lords church. She and her family came to church.

Another was a man Jhon Suarez, hes the husband of a less active member were working with. Theyve been married for 21 years, the wifes been a member on and off with activity all her life, and he has never stepped foot in a church building. Hes a tiny bit hard of heart. This week we were teaching him and we got down on our knees to have him pray for an answer if what he had read so far in the Book of Mormon is true (he had read quite a bit). He prayed, he asked, and he stayed kneeling with his eyes closed for 3 or 4 minutes. He opened his eyes, we asked what he felt, and he said he felt an unexplainable peace. We asked what he would do with that answer. He said 'That covenant you guys are talking about'. He also came to church. It was a miraculous week with investigators, I know without a doubt God is guiding us, and that our fast worked.

I feel so greatful to be here as a missionary. Its all true. Everything. All of its true.

Love Elder Crisp

Monday, September 14, 2015

September 14th, 2015

I feel really good here in Duran, we've had a really good time this week talking with everybody here. Whats intersting about this mission is that even though by distance its not that big, only about 4 hours from one limit to the other, there is a notable difference in the people in every place ive been. Im super close to my first ward so ill prolly be going over there for exchanges. The people here are way super open to us, they remind me a lot of my first sector, i think i took that for granted when i was just starting the mission, talking like i had a sock in my mouth. So I enjoyed meeting a bunch of people this week, weve taught a lot, theres a bunch of member families that are incomplete.

A huge impression I had while teaching the plan of salvation a couple times was how clear and logical and perfect it is. All the principles, about the creation, the fall, the atonement, and judgement, are not at all new to me, but as we explained them to a family of less actives and a family of investigators there were some points that just clicked if that makes sense. But ya Christs suffering doesnt purify us against our will. His pronouncement 'Here I am, send me' wasnt the end. The way to our agency and personal accountablility to accept the atonement is to make and keep covenants with the lord, nothing more. God put the authority to do so in His church. So trying some other way doesnt work any better than trying to ressurrect our own dead bodies. Trying to repent without making or renewing a covenant doesnt work. or making some church in your garage doesnt work. There wont be any excuse good enough for coming up short when we are taken before God. Im grateful for the knowledge and testimony that God has given me of His Son, His plan, and His truth. I love you all,

Elder Crisp

Monday, September 7, 2015

September 7th, 2015

I was transfered this morning to the same city where I started my mission, Duran. Im way excited to get to work here, the wards called Los Cerezos. My companion is Elder Brown hes from Chandler Arizona, were gonna kill it here together. This is probly my last ward so Im really really feeling the urgency to give it my all...the mission can be like a race, but its not a 100m where you sprint for 15 seconds and your good to go, nor is it a marathon where you pace yourself and slow down sometimes to be able to be consistent. No you have to sprint all 26 miles. I dont think Ive completely done that all my mission, but Im gonna sprint non stop till the end. Im gonna make this time count more than any other in my mission. I love the fact that this message is for all, anybody can recieve it. Anybody who is willing to listen and humble to recieve Gods help were gonna find them.

3 Nephi 9:13 O all ye that are spared because ye were morerighteous than they, will ye not now return unto me, andrepent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you?

14 Yea, verily I say unto you, if ye will come unto me yeshall have eternal life. Behold, mine arm of mercy isextended towards you, and whosoever will come, him willI receive; and blessed are those who come unto me.

I love this mission, I love Christ and what he did for us, I love the church he established.

Love, Elder Crisp

Monday, August 31, 2015

August 31st, 2015

Todo posi here, you ask how the work is going here, well its going here. We inherited a super tight investigator and he celebrated his 64th birthday the first day we taught him his names Galo AKA Barba Rusa (russian beard). Hes quite the G, and hes got a little hand with his bone sticking out its pretty cool, and hes way pilas he understands a bunch and is progressing well he ha come to church. And we did a fast with moises and gabriela and lourdes bastidas, that went well. We have met and taught some reallycool people this week too. We working way hard to help them to keep their commitments, and come unto christ. I sincerely love doing that work
A scripture that hit me: helaman 15

1 And now, my beloved brethren, behold, I declare untoyou that except ye shall repent your houses shall be leftunto you desolate.
2 Yea, except ye repent, your women shall have greatcause to mourn in the day that they shall give suck; for yeshall attempt to flee and there shall be no place for refuge;yea, and wo unto them which are with child, for they shallbe heavy and cannot flee; therefore, they shall be troddendown and shall be left to perish.
3 Yea, wo unto this people who are called the people except they shall repent, when they shall see allthese signs and wonders which shall be showed untothem; for behold, they have been a chosen people of theLord; yea, the people hath he loved, and alsohath he chastened them; yea, in the days of their iniquitieshath he chastened them because he loveth them.

I know that God truly does love us, every thing that he does, whether it seems good or bad to us, is out of love. con amor,
elder Crisp

Monday, August 24, 2015

August 24th, 2015

What it do. All is well out here, were thrusting that sickle you feel me, making it happen. its been kinda frustrating but kinda funny with the dad of the bastidas family, hes been getting in the way of the family progression....he pulled the "catholic card" which is to just say "Im catholic" to avoid having to do anything. His wife wants to get baptized but they need to get married, but he says "im catholic, I cant". I think you can do that with about anything. "Mom, I cant do the dishes, im Catholic".But ya saturday night we talked with him and had literally the most rediculous conversation Ive ever heard in my life. He says, Im gonna be sincere, Ive tried to accept what you guys teach, but its not staying in my mind. When I think of "Dioscito" (Like to say my little buddy God) all that comes to my mind is Moses. I can only believe in Moses, thats what ive been taught, thats why I named my son Moises. No matter what I try I cant put the name Smith instead of Moses. Haha it was the strangest doubt ive seen. We helped him to realize that hes super foolish, that if thats really the case then he should consider turning Jewish. That nobody ever told him to try to put any name in his head besides Christ. That led us to share the scriptue from john 14 that says he is the way, the light and the life and the truth something like that. The man realized that ya he should strive to follow christ and it led perfectly to the scriptue from 2 nephi 31 that says can we follow christ unless were willing to keep his commandments. The whole family says yes that want to, but its kinda difficult to help them to have that stick in their mind. They go to church, all but the dad, so I feel like the whole theme of my time in this sector is that Mens hearts are failing them, Ive taught super good families, but havent been able to help them keep progressing thanks to the fathers of the families being apathetic about anything to do with responsablitity. So with Pedro all I want is to not lose him nor his family cause theyre way super dope, were trying to teach like what Pres. Marion Romney said, not just so they understand, but so that theres no way they can misunderstand.
I was listening to a talk from President Nelson called let your faith show, and he talks a little about how we need to be sincere always. He says how there should be no such thing as "my private life" or "my best behaviour". He says "If one trys to segment his life into seperate compartments, hell never rise to the full stature of his integrity. Never to become all that his true self could be." That is definitely something that I for one have had to foucs on, is being the same person in all places, I think we all can. Not at all was I good at that before my mission, but really its easy to see how much more chipper it is to live being who you are always if that makes sense. Theres no way to share the gospel if we have to seperate our life into compartments depending in who we are.

Lets go get em at school, leaving on the mission, at work. This week is pretty exciting no, Im way pumped to see my little Ben leave, enjoy your last week haha. Have a good one all.
Elder Crisp

Monday, August 17, 2015

August 17th, 2015

The Bastidas family passed their interviews, so Moises and Gabriela can get baptized this saturday, but we have to get their parents married for the mom Lourdes to get baptized (were still trying to get the dad to come to church), its not gonna happen until at least next week, but they do want to get married now. They obviously want to get baptized together so were gonna help them prepare a little more and get baptized by the end of this month. Yesterday was ward conference and a bunch of less actives showed up, we had quite a few investigators in church it was cool. Its very probable that this is my last week here in Quevedo since Elder Alvarado in finishing his training. I feel like Its been really quick here but all the members are starting to say ive been here forever and that they want me out. haha no just kidding. No but Ive learned a lot about patience here, and Ive grown also a lot in my testimony. Mostly my testomony of the Savior and his perfect example and marvelous role in our lives. I think we can reflect a lot more on his sacrifice, and how much faith we have in him. Theres no better way to understand that than to change ourselves everyday, every single day repent and become better. Through repentance, Ive realized, we come to know that all the tesimonies we read in the new testament, the book of mormon, and words of modern prophets are true about Christ, that he really can and will save us. I remember the words of Elder Uceda who told us simply, Repentance is sweet. It true. The mission is the best, I love waking up and having nothing to do but to study the scriptures till we go out and get to work on the dusty streets of Quevedo with all the dusty people doing their dusty things. Its the best.

Ya till next time,
Elder Crisp

Monday, August 10, 2015

August 3rd and August 10th, 2015

August 3, 2015

This week was cool we found quite a few new people to teach, and we had a ward mission activity that wasnt to big but we did meet some cool new people that member brought. It was way cool too, we invited this kid Moises hes 15 from the Bastidaz family to seminary, he went with a friend from church. Without even invting him again the next day, he showed up to seminary, ha hes a champ its sweet that he enjoyed it. That familys progressing well to be baptized this month, but the dad no, hes opting to leave in the nights to drink instead of being there for our appts.

Reading about almas conversion in mosiah 27/28 this week shows really what it takes to be converted. He really showed he was sorry, and for that he was made clean. I was thinking about the term Im sorry, i think we use it a lot when we pray, thinking about what we can do improve. I looked up the word in the dictionary and in spanish it came up with the words Afflicted, Grieven, Regretful, Pained, Sorrowful, Upset. Now thats not really a term we can use so lightly...Its not easy to just say to God we feel bad, but to actually feel bad, sorry. God is the one that can really make us feel sorry.
Alma 5;7 Behold, he changed their hearts; yea, he awakened themout of a deep sleep.
God is the one that changes our hearts, thats something we cant do on our own. So we have to go to him, not to say were sorry, but so he can make us feel sorry.

A couple weeks ago i walked in wet cement and now i will have a mark forever in that corner of children will pass by there and say wow my daddy was a hard worker that wouldnt even let wet cement get in his way. I hope you can all appreciate the piece of history that i made

Elder Crisp

August 10, 2015

We had another delicious week here in bellavista. We ate some animal or something called Guatusa im still not quite sure what it is if someone can please tell me what I ate. That was cool. We have the Family Bastidas still progressing well towards baptism, except the dad, but hes still moving more or less. Moises whos 15 goes to seminary every day, thats a super good tool. Weve met a couple people super bomb who have found a bunch of interest in the Book of Mormon thats seriously the best tool we have. Theres this guys Johnathan who, even though works and studys every day from 4am till 11pm, and the weekends visits his family about 3 hours away, read everything we gave him, a couple pamphlets with all the scripture references from the Bible and The book of mormon, and the testimonies of the book, and the first couple chapters of nephi. From what he had read, he was able to pray and knows without a doubt he says that its all true, that he wants to follow the path God has given us. We can only visit him Sundays at nights, but he was able to do all that on his own. Ive never seen someone find so much interest in the Book of Mormon, but it goes to show what God can do for us if we just try. Were gonna see what we can do to get him baptized, itll probly be where hes from. It was still cool to see how quickly he came to that point.

Being here in the mission, I have seen the mercy of Jesus Christ, I have seen how the Atonement saves us, I have seen how we can not only change our actions but who we are. I have seen how as we excercise faith unto repentance the plan of redemption IMMEDIATELY takes effect (Alma 34:31). There is no greater joy than to know we can repent and change. The pain we feel, or may choose to ignore, from sin comes from God, and is removed only by applying the sacrifice of Christ. The Restored Gospel is so true, the Preisthood is found here on earth its not just a Mormon urban legend, it is Gods power. The Atonement works and brings so much peace, its not just a cute little fairytale 11 dudes made up 2000 years ago. It is our salvation. Its all true, so many people will try to deny or even attack these truths but I know that God does live, that he has established his kingdom. and that the Lord wants to forgive, anybody who is willing to be humble. Im super greatful to be able to know these things.

With love,
Elder Crisp

Monday, July 20, 2015

July 20th, 2015

Another week full of excitement, we had quite a few good things happen like for example I ate a mountain of fried shrimp last monday and i think a few were still alive and all week long Ive been living with something in stomach, its been really fun. Ive dipped a little bit more in wieght on the parasite diet. But things are going well, weve been working with an excellent family Bastiaz who came to church, were hoping and praying a bunch that they can keep progressing because Ive seen a lot of firsthand witness that now in the last days, mens hearts are failing them. The family has a daughter whos 21 that suffers from schizofrenia, she has been improving but she has her moments. She understands what we teach her and has earnestly, with her mom more than anyone, looked for an answer about the Book of Mormon. Theyre starting to feel that yes, and that this is like her chance at a good future so she can get better and be in the right path and be able to go and study in the university. Theyre a way cool family.

The chapter from Mosiah 16 i was reading is one of the best as a example of the power of the testimony of christ that the Book of Mormon gives.

8 But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath novictory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ.
9 He is the light and the life of the world; yea, a light thatis endless, that can never be darkened; yea, and also a lifewhich is endless, that there can be no more death.

President had a little meeting with us this week helping us to plan better, and we mad these "fishbone" lists, where we listed all the things that we have on our side to help us complete our goals, have greater success, and on the other side all the things that might impede us from doing so. There are a lot on both sides, but it really helped me to realize that there is no challenge that an investigator may have that is out of our control. Obviously we all have the gift of agency, but we as missionaries have all the tools to help people use their agency to choose Gods plan. And that scripture is an example of the most powerful tool we have to have success...the light of the world, Christ. It was pretty cool looking at that list and comparing all our advantages and disadvantages, we have a bunch with the gospel.

Elder Crisp

Monday, July 13, 2015

July 13th, 2015

Its been going well, weve been working stilll with the Mendozas to prepare their wedding the next week, they were a little bit doubtful but the wife went up to Quito this weekend to get some papers done so things look pretty good. Were working, or trying to work with the people weve had coming to church, investigators and less actives but we havent had too much success finding them in their houses or even contacting them, so we met a couple cool new people this week too.

We were talking to this dude who claims to be the leader of the all the churches and pastors, his names andres hes a little bit off but hes way funny. He says he goes from church to church teaching people to heal so that they can make more money. He says hes purified and almost is ready for his angel wings to sprout out of his back. He said that God has money too, but its cash only not credit. And that God has a car and there are highways in heaven. And that he can measure how much energy one has by simply shaking their hand- my companion has negative energy and I dont have any energy at all. Ha we talked a good while with him, and some how the conversation got to how God has a body of flesh and bones...and he said he knows thats true because there was that one guy who was building ships and he knew itd be dark so he took rocks to the mountain and the finger of God touched them. Haha he was talking about the brother of Jared, this man had read the whole book of Mormon. And he told us he knew it was true and that he had read Doctrine and Covenants too and that book was super important to understand Gods communication with men. Ha so we asked why he doestnt get baptized and he told us that baptism went out of style, and that God himself baptized him. Ha he wanted to come to church to meet and instruct the Bishop and to heal all of the sick there to charge them. He never showed up.

Jacob 3:1-2 Look unto God with firmness of mind, and prayunto him with exceeding faith, and he will console you inyour afflictions, and he will plead your cause, and senddown justice upon those who seek your destruction.

2 O all ye that are pure in heart, lift up your heads andreceive the pleasing word of God, and feast upon his love;for ye may, if your minds are firm, forever.

Elder Crisp

Good week in the font ;)

Monday, July 6, 2015

July 6th, 2015

Happy 4th of July, what a pain i couldnt be there, no one seems to celebrate that holdiay here im not very sure why. This week we got to go to the temple, and down in guayaquil we had a zone conference. It was way nice, in the conference we talked about helping people to be self sufficient, to help them to be able to look for answers on their own and reach their own personal conversion. A lot of people are only strong when "their" missionaries are around. I think knowing how to recieve personal revelation and to be self sufficient in what we can do (ovbiously our salvation is only available through Christ) can help everyone to be more converted to the Lord.

We visited the Mendoza family a few times, theyre doing super well and are still preparing to get married in 2 weeks, Leticia the wife is animated as well for baptism, she said she got an answer about the Book of Mormon. It was funny they invited us for dinner saturday night, and while we were eating she asked us, Hey am I allowed to invite my sister in law to church? Ha we were gonna ask them that night if they knew anybody that could listen too, but she was already a step ahead of us, that night she invited her to church and they both were there waiting for us at church when we got there Sunday. Its way cool to see investigators excited to share what theyre learning. We had them two, and also another lady Gerenalda with two of her kids come, ha were filling up the relief society. Weve been wanting to find men to help the ward grow, this wards way down in terms of prisethood holders, but were subconsciencly implementing plan Titanic - save the women and children first. But ya Angel Mendozas still super excited to return to church. Our man voltaire who were saving from being drunk is up and down.

I read this week from 2 Nephi 25, and I was thinking about how important are the last like 10 verses. 23- 30. I encourage you to read them. We use these a lot to help people see what the Book of Mormon talks about...Christ. Nephi states a bunch of reasons why hes writing for us, with confidence that we will have those scriptures....He gives us a few things to have in mind as we read them. We can change where he says "We write diligently" to "We study diligently" so that we can have faith in Christ, be reconciled with God, understand the grace of God, etc. In any study of the scriputres, Book of mormon, or the bible, we can stop and and ask, why did they write that for me? Why will that help me to believe more in Christ? Why should i believe in Christ? Its a way dope passage of scritpure. I have seen, in this week alone, the Book of Mormon touch peoples lives.So ya thats whats going on out here, things are going well. "Todo Posi"

Elder Crisp

Monday, June 29, 2015

June 29th, 2015

This week we had a family come with us to church, the mendoza family, the dad Angel is a lessactive member from 20 years but hes way excited to come back to church, as he remembers the things he used to learn he gets excited and clarifies them to his wife, Leticia, who is preparing to get baptized. They have a kid whos 8 who also will get baptized, in this month were gonna help them to get married and its gonna be super sweet. And also Voltaire the main man came to church, we thought he had given up cause he stopped answering our calls, we thought he just wanted to keep live his life as a drunk, but we finally contacted him and he came to church completly alone and super early, told us he hasnt drunken all week, and in the church was super calm and happy to be there. A few members helped a bunch to make him feel comfortable and like he was with family, were super happy for him and his progress.

I loved a talk that the bishops son who recently got back from his mission gave in church yesterday, talking about the story in the book of mormon when Moroni and his soldiers are abandoned and with out food, and Moroni gets mad and chews out Pahoran, even though Pahoran was in a similar situation. He spoke about how We sometimes are like Moroni, we get upset with others with out understanding the situation completely. We make accuations and threats like Moroni, or simply judge without reason. But, wheter were the ones that judge, or if were like pahoran, being judged unfairly, we need to take the high road as did Pahoran. He responded super calmly and took the high road, he basically hey bro I understand where youre coming from, I know you got a big heart and are trying to help, but hey man Im trying my best. Ha he responded like a champ, with love, humility, and without trying to start more problems. I really liked that talk.

Elder Crisp

I call this photo "The Joy of the Gospel"

Monday, June 22, 2015

June 22nd, 2015

This week went by really fast, weve been finding people to teach, just from looking for people from the ward list we have found a couple families who are ready to come back to church, and their families who are just recently hearing about the church are interested. Its sweet to see people be touched knowing theyre still remembered in the church. And even though sometimes its difficult to be teaching to a bunch of people, making their problems ours, worrying about them even though they dont really worry about their ownselves, its worth it to keep trying, to keep inviting them and encouraging them. The drunk guy Voltaire is struggling giving up booze. The guy we were helping to get married Gonzalo has relationship and money issues that have distracted him a bunch. No but were gonna keep at it. The work is going well, were learning a bunch and havin a blast.

Elder Crisp

Monday, June 15, 2015

June 15th, 2015

To start off, congrats to Ben thats way exciting about the mission call! Way back in the day when i was serving in the mission La Paz we had a bunch of success we found a lot of humble loving people I had a lot of great experiences....let me tell ya youre gonna love that country. Its real neat. ha just playing

We had a good week, weve found quite a new people to teach, theres this dude Voltaire (dope name) who we met when he was drunk and wants to quit alchohol, hes super humble and willing to accept the gospel so and were helping him to drop that. We also got the main man Gonzalo whos working to be married to be able to be baptized, hes got a few problems in his relationship that are coming up so we have to help him a lot. We met a few part member families, this one lady Maria has been inactive like 18 years and have hardly seen missionaries that whole time, she wants to come back to church and her family is also interested. Theres so many people with so many different things going on, so many different stories, but in the end they all have one thing in common. The Restored Gospel Is The Best Thing That Can Happen To Them, Its The Most Important Message They Will Ever Hear.

I was thinking a bunch about and I shared with the ward in a talk Sunday a simple thing Christ said in John 8:14. In defending his testimony that he was the son of God, he said simply enough For I know whence I came, and whither I go. To be able to be firm in defending our testimony, following His example, we must be sure from where we came, and to where are we going. Know what our purpose is. Know who we are. This life is a war (D&C 76:29) and were encircled about, as saints of God, by Satan. Knowing who we are helps us to be sure, like Nephi saw in our days (1 Nephi 14:14), that we are "armed with righteousness and power from God in great glory". That comes from a sure testimony of from whence we come and whither we go, with that testimony we can be sure of our beliefs and defend and share them.

Elder Crisp

Monday, June 8, 2015

June 8th, 2015

So this week we hardly had any time to work.... I got my companion wednesday. His name is Elder Alvarado hes from Lima. We spent the day in the presidents house, that was my first time going there, its was sweet. Obviously he talked about the basics of teaching and missionary work and whatnot for the new missionaries, but I learned a lot, We stayed quite a while after cause the sister Riggins was worried about some crap that i showed her sprouting out of my face. So we got back really late wednesday, we worked all of thursday but friday we had to go back to Guayaquil for this ugly stuff thats growing on my face. It turns out that i have Folliculitis its pretty nasty and now i cant shave till it all goes away. All the members yesterday were calling me "Castaway" and saying wilson! cause I havent shaven since wednesday haha. But despite the lack of time we had to work, we had help from the fast we had, an investigator we just barely talked to saturday in the night, his names gonzalo, came to church, he wants to get baptized so were gonna help him get married, and start teaching to his girlfriend. it was definitely an answer from god.

I had just been reading a talk from this last general conference, the magazine finally got to us, and i was reading a talk from Neil l ANderson in his talk "Thy Kingdom Come" who tells something that Pres monsons told him.

Eighteen years ago while traveling on a train in Switzerland with President Monson, I asked him about his heavy responsibilities. His response strengthened my faith. “In the First Presidency,” he said, “we do everything we can to move this work forward. But this is the Lord’s work, and He directs it. He is at the helm. We marvel as we watch Him open doors we cannot open and perform miracles we can scarcely imagine.”

Thats way true and i have definitely seen that here in the mission. Sometimes we dont involve God in the work, in our decisions or when we need help. We just kind of do it how we want it. But ive definitely seen that we Hes the one guiding us, stuff like what happened saturday with Gonzalo happens, doors open and we get a bunch of help. I think thats a super powerful quote and its definitely true. 

Shoutsout to ben for graduating what a champ, im pumped to hear his call, Shoutsout to the corolla too. good buy. Ya so have a good week.

Love, Elder Crisp

an adorable little jungle looking river tree deal. thats nature baby.
4 missionarys of bellavista

Friday, June 5, 2015

June 1st, 2015

Hey how goes it everyone. Im doing good. Elder Camacho finished his mission so Im in guayaquil right now with the homie Elder Lizana and ill be here the next couple of days cause my companions getting here wednesday. We met quite a few new people this week, we tried to give it a little more to finish off his last week on a good note. We met this lady feliza who just lost her son, this other dude osualdo who always is cleaning his table right outside his house and has some interesting chest hair and has been married for 25 years. And weve been fighting with the Barreiros to get an answer from God if the church is true....we found out the problem is theyre kinda scared to get the answer.....theyre scared to have to act on that answer and so theyre hesitant to pray sincerely and actually listen. But we got them over that, and we talked about fasting and praying and they want to do a fast, were gonna fast with them this week. They liked the scripture from Alma 5:46 that says that he prayed and fasted MANY days to be able to know the truth of what he is teaching. 

This week we saw a huge miracle with a less active member who gave birth...shes like 44 and there was supposed to be huge birth defects and problems with her own health, but everything came out (literally) perfectly fine thanks to her faith and a priesthood blessing. It was a huge testimony that God knows us, he answers prayers, and that the preisthoods real. Ya so everythings good, Im kind of a little bit safe here in guayaquil even though today we took a taxi with some dude from lebanon and he started talking about how much he knows about explosive weapons, and that everyone in his country comes out of the womb hating north americans.... I made it out of that taxi alive. haha. Well I love you all, find joy in everything you do. Thats the key.

Elder Crisp

Monday, May 18, 2015

May 18th, 2015

Everythings going well, we still havent been working with many new people, but we found a bunch of less actives this last week by going out in splits. There are a bunch of people in this ward here, 600 odd people I think, way too many of those are inactive so we want to find a bunch of them. Its kinda funny, quite a few times weve contacted people who by the end of the converstaion remember that "Oh ya, i was baptized like 30 years ago". Theyre everywhere here. So ya we are battleing to find investigators and less actives. The family who weve been more focused in the barreiros, were sick all this last week but it really kind of seems like theyre not as excited as before to listen to us....were trying not to get bummed from that, we hopt that theyll keep moving on, all were trying to focus on with them is the temple, that they can be sealed as a family FOREVER in 1 year if they just "se ponen pilas"

President has been having us try to focus more on the atonement,like putting it at the base of all our teaching and applying it to us ourselves. He said in a training this last week, The most important moment in all the scritpures, the most important thing thats ever been said is the moment when Christ stepped up and accepted Gods plan, saying Thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever (Moses 4;1-3). Pres. explained how good it must have felt for each of us to hear that, that wed have not only agency but an atonement, not only life but life eternal. Everybody who has lived and will live was aware of that fact and the plan at that moment, its pretty cool thats not anything new for anybody, nieither is His restored gospel and Gods plan of salvation. Honestly itd be pretty sweet to be able to go back and see that conversation again when God denied Satans offer and put Christ in as our Savior.

I was studying fromromans, and paul talks a lot about grace, how not just having the law, or keeping the commandments is enough, but also the grace of Christ....the atonement. His redeeming power. I really like in 8 it talks about how we as carnal beings are enemies to God, but we dont need to live "after the flesh" like the natural man, but after the spirit. Thats another huge lesson President had us thinking about, is how to kill the natural man inside of us, and being sanctified by christ. Paul explains that if we can learn to do that were called Gods sons. And if we dont we shall die.

This week should be interesting, our ward just got 2 missionaries (were 4 now instead of 2) so well be working with them a bunch, and we have a conference in guayaquil about Family History from "somebody from Salt lake" (i dont know if its a general authority) and we also have zone conference and interviews so there wont be much time to work. BUt anyway I hope all have a good one too.

Elder Crisp

Monday, April 27, 2015

April 27th, 2015

Basically the people we have progressing right now are the Family Barreiro, and its going really well. Its funny the wife Veronica is super super excited about everything we teach her. She listened to the same lesson that you taught Mom last week about the Restoration and came to us with a bunch of questions and was really curious about everything. We watched the Restoration video with them this week, afterwards she was like I totally get it, now I know more for the Relief society class for Sunday! Shes way pumped up, but she couldnt come to church, the husband Geovani came alone with their older son and daughter who are 11 and 6....the mom and the other son were sick. But still they seem really really happy to listen and are understanding everything, I havent been so excited to teach people in a quite a while. I really feel like this family is in the perfect moment for the gospel and that they moved here for a reason, I really hope they can keep progressing.

Im really running out of interesting things to say in these letters. Haha. Were looking for people to teach, were teaching. Were walking and discovering new parts of our area cause its huge. were trying to help less actives and converts that are still week. We tried to turn our freezer into an air conditioner in our room last night and it didnt work we were still hot. Im teaching myself how to cook fancy things and it kinda turns out. Im progressing a lot as a person here ha. Have a good one yal. Happy birthday to my two favoritst people ever! Mom and Ben!

Elder Crisp

Monday, April 20, 2015

April 20th, 2015

We had a good week, during the week we didn't have too many people to teach, quite a few of our investigators were out of town, but we had the family Barreiro who we met last week that was moving here to Quevedo in church, and the brother of a less active who we barely met saturday came as well. We havent taught them yet or got to know them that well but I have a lot of faith that the family Barreiro that came are gonna be super receptive to the gospel and will progress. We normally have the challenge that we teach and teach and teach people but they never want to wake up to go to church, but here its been the opposite, people are coming when we just barely meet them, its a lot easier that way, so we got a lot of people to teach this week.
Something that President has had us start to do is look for Gods hand in everything we do....look for how he has blessed us , and find joy in everything we do. Its been cool looking for the Lords hand in everything, really there has been a lot this week. I find joy in that my shoes still haven't broken even a little so far. I find joy in old spice champion cause i sweat a lot but I dont smell that bad nor have stain in my clothes. I find joy in how much the Spirit helps us to teach and also in those magical words I testify. I find joy in members who get super excited when we ask them if they have somebody they want us to teach and they do. I find joy in the dude that gave me a sweet poncho. Its really easy to not think about the sweetness that is life, or the mission, but then again its super easy to realize all the little things and be super happy.

Elder Crisp

mi nuevo poncho bacan

Monday, April 13, 2015

April 13th, 2015

Were in the super fun season of ecuador they call winter where its stupid hot during the days and then it dumps rain at night...when its not raining all the water is being evaporated all around our faces and its like being in a sauna or a duck oven and it makes walking around be really enjoyable. and then while we sleep the rain makes this magical effect when it hits on the roof where its like im back in the womb being lullabied like one of those snakes in india... thats honestly the best way to sleep. All i know is that with all this sun and rain i have gained a huge testimony of the water cycle. I know its true.

We discovered a fruit that makes boooomb shakes its called "borojó", its a nasty looking and smelling and feeling fruit but you mix it with milk and sugar and its super bomb it tastes like yogurt from a natural flowing mountain stream in the alps or something. We tried it with a member then we bought one and started making our own and then we found out that its got some chemical thats supposed to make you more romantic haha. So we might stop drinking it or well turn into one of those old THIS IS BOB commercials.

So we hadnt had much luck finding the people we had been teaching before, who had come to churhc and started preparing to be baptized. But we got a lot of help from above yesterday, out of nowhere came 3 investigators to church who are family of Edgar a member who we got going to church after a few years of inactivity (he gave me a sweet tie yesterday that i complemented him on last week), and then in the afternoon after ward council we saw the recently released ward mission leader Tito (hes a champ) touring his non member brother and family around the church, turns out theyre moving here from guayaquil this week and theyre married and interested so yesterday was a super good day.

I read and liked the miracle that Christ performed on the blind man Barmaeus in mark 10:48-52. Ive been thinking a lot about why its important to know how Christ was because part of his mission is to know who the Father is. And in this story the blind dude says "have mercy on me Lord". And Christ responds "what do you want". Not that Christ didnt know exactly what the blind man crying to him wanted, obviously his sight. But He didnt heal barmaeus until he asked exactly what he wanted- "Lord, that I might recieve my sight". I think its the same with God....were talking to Him, we cant just ask for "blessings" or "help with that thing". If we need an answer, or something, we got to get off our butt like Barmaeus and ask specifically. Then our faith can make us whole.

Keep it one hunnid out there folks. Shout out to Elder taylors mom

Elder Crisp´

borojo and brownies we made, it all looks disgusting but it was bomb.

Monday, April 6, 2015

April 6th, 2015

The week was super sweet Im feeling super pumped right now after being able to go the the temple this week and listen to the conference talks all weekend long. It was especially super sweet cause we had 6 investigators come to conference and I know that left an impact on them, to hear the men called of God to be his special witnesses testify of His Son, on the day he saved the world from death. I noticed a lot of theme to be marriage, like family life and finding a spouse cough cough Ethan cough cough Amy. And about the plan of salvation, our divine potencial and how we need to fulfill. I loved Elder Bednars talk about godly fear, I think that is the best way to apply everything we learn. He teaches that godly fear is deep respect and love for the lord, trusting him and realizing that we have to respond before the end there will be no excuse at judgement for what we do, and unless we press forward in christ, and fear god in this life, that will be a fearful day.
Some quotes i liked its never to late to make the choice weve already made. to follow Gods plan
God cant obligate us to believe...Dont give up keep believing.
A saint is a sinner who keeps on trying
Dont pretend to be in a car show when really your in the mechanic shop

Christ, The most accomplished man who has ever lived, was also the most humble

Serve not from assignment, but from geniune love for god and his children

President Monsons firm invitation to go to the temple and remember our covenants

All the super devout people hear dont eat meat and chicken during the week or something like that for the holy week (but then spend the weekend wasted), and so instead they have a "special" dish to eat for the week called fanesca. Its every type of bean and grain you can imagine in a soup with tuna and fish and sardine. Look up a picture of it it will make you want to eat it ha. I dont understand why they have that tradition but ya thats what i got to eat to celebrate easter haha. I missed ham and easter egg hunts but instead I (we) learned a ton about the atonement and the ressurrection of Christ, and what an impact that is....Our lives changed at that moment like Uchtdorf said. The atonement and resurrection is the gift of victory over the fall...well all be at that sandy ledge about to fall and there is only one person, the son of god who will be able to reach out for us.

Im really happy to be here Bellavista of Quevedo Ecuador, I know the work im doing is the same work that Christ called his disciples to do in matthew 28: 19, and that He lives, and directs His church by prophets, seers, and revelators, who are the First presidency and the 12 apostles. The Bible is true and the Book of Mormon is true and they together are a perfect testimony of Christ. Im happy to know and share these things with wild fanesca eating Ecuatorians.

Elder Crisp

the gringo room at conference. we got to watch 3 sessions in english

Monday, March 30, 2015

March 30th, 2015

It was a good time with elder camacho this week, we have a bunch of work to do but a super bomb mission leader to help us...Were trying to reach out to all the converts of two years and look for less actives who can be priesthood holders to help the church grow. We were given a promise that if we work equally 50 50 with less actives and investigators, baptisms will double. Which I know will work especially because a lot of those who are weaker have family members who are ready for the restored gospel. Our strongest investigator right now his parents are also less actives who were working with his name is agustin, hes 30 and its easy to tell hes been affected a lot by alcohol but is super willing to change, hes got a super calm attitude and is always realy content to listen, and always reads from the sections we leave him in the scriptures. We were gonna have his baptism this last friday but hell need to prepare a little more before hand, were hoping that hes not gonna get disencouraged. We have quite a few other people who are also pretty close to baptism so its exciting.

Something that I heard from another missionary this week about testimonies are like sources of heat. Some people have a burning log. Some have an electric resistor. Some have coal. All three work right, all three give off heat, but the log goes out when a breeze comes. The resistor relies on other electricity to be able to give off heat, so if those other sources go out it will as well. But the coal once its lit, itll keep burning. When a breeze comes it burns more, it gets hotter. I think that example serves as a good way to see where we are in our testimonies...Am i a log, am I lamp, or charcoal. Do I give up on my beliefs when the slightest challenge or doubt comes? Do I rely on the testimony of others to confirm what I believe? Or do I get stronger the harder the situation is, do I want mountains to climb to make my testimony firmer like David o Mckay said, Am i unmovable no matter the circumstance? To have our light shine to forth to the world and not hidden under a bushel, like christ said, I think the best, the only, option would be to put some nice hot coals up on that hill.

This is gonna be a bomb week cause today we are traveling 4 hours to guayaquil (for that theres not much time today) to go to the templetomorrow morning, were gonna have a zone conference in only english, and general conference is this weekend! General conference is honestly the best I hope you can all watch every session, I wish I used to do that cause I come out of these weekends feeling stronger always. But ya enjoy the week everyone.

Elder Crisp

Monday, March 23, 2015

March 23rd, 2015

This week was cool, were still in the trio and the works kinda picking up. We had a baptism of a young women Erika whos 16 and whos sisters were baptised some time ago, she had doubts about it before, but finally felt ready and was super happy...she wasnt confirmed yet though because we had stake conference saturday and sunday. Which was a really cool conference, we had a bunch of investigators there to see some powerful talks from president riggins and the temple president Furhiman and the stake president.

I read through Mormon 8 and 9 this past week which are super bomb about how the record they were trying to preserve would come back to us, and in what state the world would be in at the time of the restoration of this with the gospel....
I love the when moroni talks in 9:19 20 about the miracles that God still can perform. God is still the same. God will never change. Why would He cease to be a god of miracles and still be an unchangeable. I know that Christ performed the miracles that are written in the new testament and in the book of mormon, . And because that same power of priesthood is found today, and God doesnt change, we can see miracles in our lives. We can experience all that firsthand. I know because I have seen it here, almost everyday. Huge miracles. Tiny ones. Some that are so simple that you cant notice without effort. A miracle he gives us is the ability to change who we are by changing what we want. Thats one of the biggest ive seen- completely changing what we desire to conform with what he wants. Whatever be the thing we need, God can do it. I know God is there and he is a God of miracles, no one can make me deny that.

So since I started writing this letter one of my companions was just notified hes got transfer so everythings back to normal. its cool cause he was the one bringing this ward down really. So ya i cant write that much more cause we have to leave, but i might come back to finish the time to be able to talk a littl more.

Elder Crisp

quevedo ecuador
im a menace to society

Monday, March 16, 2015

March 16th, 2015

The week was really interesting being in a trio but it was cool. What happened is they closed one of the two sectors in this ward, Bellavista, and one of the companions each stayed. So we have been working a lot to keep it like theres still 4 missionaries and 2 sectors here, working a lot in splits and whatnot. There isnt too many people really progressing but there can be. Theres a bunch of members that can help but the truth is that they dont want to right now cause the missionaries lately have been lazy and rude and disobedient. So theres a lot to deal with right now trying to fix those problems. Our duty as missionaries to represent Christ is not just to set an example or gain trust with people outside of his church or trying to come back. Its also so that the members who want to help in the salvation of another can have a worthy and powerful source of help. Anyone would trust Christ with a referal obviously but sadly these members wouldnt (cant) trust the missionaries right now. Something I spoke about sunday cause i had to give a talk and I mentioned that when we invite them to go on a visit to a less active or investigator, or to invite their friends to church, its simply an invitation to help in the eternal salvation of that person. That its a responsibility, cause like when Christ told Peter when hes converted to strengthen his brethren (Luke 22:32) If were converted, we are willing to work to strengthen our brethren. Having a testimony like peter had wont be enough to save ourselves, but also to be converted, and we cant be converted if we dont fortalize those around us Being called Gods people means that were willing to mourn with those who mourn, to lift the weight of others, to confort those who need to be comforted, to always be his witness (Mosiah 18:8-10). Were killing it out here and Im getting really excited for conference in 3 weeks to listen to prophets seers revelators called of God. Im happy to be here in Quevedo sharing this perfect restored gospel designed by our Father in heaven!

Elder Crisp

los 3 nefitas (the 3 Nephites)

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

March 9th, 2015

Sorry I gotta write super quick cause Im super late, just to say that Im alive, today I was transfered again. I "killed" my companion Elder Gonzalez, hes done with the mission and because there was an odd number of missionaries I got kicked out and put in a trio. Im in a big city way far away from the rest of the mission, called Quevedo. My companions for right now are Elder Camacho a costarican, and Elder Ordoñez from Honduras. Itll be a really interesting week working with 2 companions but the city were in is known as the paradise of the mission cause the people are a lot more ready to recieve the gospel here. So ya thats whats going on, its been a wild day, i hope every one has a good week!

Elder Crisp

March 2nd, 2015

It was a satisfying week and we had a baptism, of a young women Paola. It was a pretty cool experience with her cause even though her sisters and mom are members (she lives apart from them) she was super opposed to the message at first, she had previously been baptized in another christian church. She repeated a billion times the first night we met her in january that there is no true church of jesus christ that any road will do and that nothing will convince her otherwise. She came to church a few times with her family, but didnt really listen when we tried to teach her. Her whole attitude changed when one day when we went to her house we found her sitting outside, super down from a bad day she had had....she told us that we came at just the right time, that we were answers to her prayer and "angels".

That one moment is when she really started to act and have desires to follow the restored gospel. Its amazing how often that kind of thing happens, where we just happen to be in the right place in the right time, that really led to the conversion of paola. after being a missionary for over a year I still cant accept the belief that Im an "angel", i disagree with that haha. But i do know that even though im nowhere near being a perfect missionary or disciple of Christ, God does use us as missionarys, he kinda just throws us where he needs us to be without us even realize it. Thats a lesson for anybody in life too....the small, seemingly unimportant decisions we make sometimes can make the huge difference for our own salvation, or even better some one elses. Thats a huge testimony of our Father´s love for us.

I read the book of Helaman this last week which is full of super good scriptures, and i also listened to a talk from President Bensen "book of mormon the keystone of religion". He tells that a huge chunk of the book is focused on the time right before the coming of Christ, right when the times were most important. That is super evident in Helaman, that because of their combinations and pride, and apathy, they started to fall, the chosen people of the lord, right as the son of God came into the world. Im sure satans gonna get worse and worse as we get closer and closer to the coming of christ, and I think the invitation from bensen to learn from the Nephites of how to prepare for that coming is wise. I hope every one has a good one.

Elder Crisp

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

February 23rd, 2015

The first few days of the week were pretty wild and we couldnt leave to teach or anything. We tried to leave for a second to buy a cola at the corner and all of our neighbors dumped a ton of water and eggs on us it was crazy. Literally all of the people in the street were covered in paint, the whole country was shut down just to get dirty and wet. Ha so that was cool, trying to start back up again after the war died down wasnt too easy. But this week we didnt have that many new investigators or anything. We do have two planned baptisms for this saturday with some people weve been working with, the both arent super sure. Ones name is paola whos 17, all her sisters are members but she had been going to a different church, but shes been getting involved with the yw and everything so she feels really good here. And the others name is antonio, hes like 40 his girlfriends a super strong member and hes been investigating for a long time. I think he had a few doubts that hes been able to clear up about something that happened in his past, so were hoping to be able to finally harvest the work of a years worth of missionaries. They both need a lot of prayers and help for this saturday to be a bomb day for them.

Sunday the branch president got up and started talking about the men not doing their home teaching, just speaking directly and boldly that it needs to be done and that neglecting those people who are struggling in the gospel cant be, especially cause its not even requiring that much to visit them and make them feel loved. It was pretty sad to see 3 men, two of them return missionaries, all three endowed and sealed in the temple start to chirp back at him saying that hes taking away their agency, and imposing a lot on them. That just made me realize how important it is to be willing to serve. To not complain about it either. Theres always things that we can do to serve if its as easy as a calling or home teaching assignments or cleaning the church or doing whatever, and to think that its something imposing to participate a little in the help of someones salvation is obviously not the right attitude. Im glad that i had good examples of for one the home teaching in bro warner and bro wilson, who kinda made me do it haha but hey we did it. I think we should all sit back and see really how disposed we are to serve. Im super happy to serve here, im really happy to be a missionary.

Elder Crisp

my comps birthday

Monday, February 16, 2015

February 16, 2015

It was a super satisfying week we got the Family Sandoval baptized, the mom and two sons. It was kinda funny the mom Siria got there and the only clothing we had for her was the jumpsuit thing....she wanted a dress so she was like no im not gonna get baptized like a man i want a dress i want a dress!! Haha in the end she decided to just use an already wet dress that was used by another baptism in the branch, it was all good but it was kind of funny. The family especially the boys were super happy at their baptism, and Siria was way content Sunday for her confirmation.

I've been reading a lot in Alma and in reading chapters 40-42 its super obvious that that is one of the plain and precious truths that has been lost. Its too clear about where were going and whatnot, it makes me super grateful for having that revelation and knowledge restored. At the end of all that was said by Alma about death and resurrection, and the plan of salvation, he leaves it simply enough that (Alma 42:27)
"Whosoever will come may come and partake of the waters of life freely; and whosoever will not come the same is not compelled to come; but in the last day it shall be restored unto him according to his deeds."

I think that invitation is dope....if we want to come and partake of salvation, it depends on us. Besides the power of redemption in Christ, it all depends on if we truly want it. its a cool scripture.
This last weekend till tomorrow is a huge holiday here in south america called carnaval.....basically just a huge waterfight and an excuse for people to get drunk. People throw paint and rotten eggs and a whole bunch of stuff. Were not really supposed to leave the house these next two days so you know its a bunch of fun here. Well see what we can get done this next week.

Elder Crisp
Bishop johnsons nephew.
Siria, Elvis, y Samir Sandoval

Monday, February 9, 2015

February 9th, 2015

Its been a good week, just putting in work and whatnot. Me and the other gringo from the branch Elder connolly have been teaching classes of English and its pretty fun, quite a few people are coming and im learning how much that language doesnt make sense. I think were gonna get a bunch of investigators going there, apart from that were still working with the same people basically, seeing some progress. My companion elder Gonzalez has 4 weeks left and hes ready to go but were gonna keep working and get some baptisms before hes goes out.

Presidente Riggins came to our sacrament and spoke it was pretty cool. We ha ve a goal to turn this district into a stake cause its pretty close. So he shared the prayer that Jesus gave in John 17 . He prays in vrs 22, that his disciples may one, just as himslef and God are one. Thinking about how one of the last things Christ supplicated of God in his life was that we, as his disciples can be united. Can we get along. Can we support one another. Can we truly love one another. That we can really be a Zion, with one heart one mind. Thats what our leader wants of us. How sad it is to see fallen away members, like the thousands here, from other members' actions. Christ prayed for that specifically. Remember that before you offend someone or get offended. After, we taught the gospel principles class on the Spirit, to a few recent converts, a couple investigators, and the mission presidents wife. Haha it was really intresting. But ya so everything's going well out here , the "really hot during the day, and pouring rain at night" season is here its a blast.

Elder Crisp

Monday, February 2, 2015

February 2nd, 2015

I dont have much time, but ya this was a pretty good week. We didnt have too much progress with investigators, we met a lot of new ones, and had quite a few come to church, especially Ruth,whos doing great. The other family we were focusing on Sandoval continued in their problems and for now dont want to take the step of baptism at all till they can be more christlike in house, a real bummer but its still a bomb family. The works going great here though.

Something small I found in the scriputures this week was in Alma 25, explaining why the people lived the law of moses. 16.Now they did not suppose that salvation came by the law of Moses; but the law of Moses did serve to strengthen their faith in Christ; and thus they did retain a hope through faith, unto eternal salvation
The law of sacrifice that prepared the way for the true sacrifice, and redemption from the atonement of christ, was to strengthen the faith in him. We have a lot that we can sacrifice as well, and as we serve, and sacrifice time, energy, materials, we are strengthened in our faith in Christ. I have seen that here a ton, seeing how in just walking a little bit of what Christ did, feeling what he did, seeing what it means to really sacrifice, even though its not near what he did for us, that understanding gives me a greater love for what he did. Cause only in that manner can we even fathom a little bit of what God gave to us. I testify that in walking with him, sacrificing what talents and efforts we have, our faith in him really does grow...the law of sacrifice is still in effect.

Have a good one,
Elder Crisp

Monday, January 26, 2015

January 26th, 2015

It was another good week, I didnt have any kidney stones so that was good. We continue in this struggle to find families who are married or at least want to get married. Its amazing how difficult it is. Like I was saying we have one family the fam Sandoval who are married but not happily. Satans definitely winning the battle there, they fight a lot and the husbands a little bit lazy...the wife Siria said shes completely given up on him, she doesnt love him. Its really sad but she at least is really committed and willing to be follow Christ. Her and 2 of her kids came to church and shes really happy there, well see if this or the next week shell be baptized with those two.
Apart from that we still have Ruth. Shes super great, we gained a lot of trust with her this week and she opened up, everything from her past. She had been involved in a super bad drunk driving accident and almost died. I thought before she had had a stroke cause half her face is disfigured but its because of that accident. So she was living up in Quito, she had been down about some stuff in her life, and a good friend of hers told her theres some light at the end of the tunnel that you can find. And that inspired her to move back here, 3 months ago. She said when we contacted she felt that that was the light she wanted....after the first lesson we had she called that friend from quito, said 'hey so Im listening to these two mormon boys and I feel really good and I feel like this is the light you told me about, theyre talking about baptism, what do you think' the friend was like are you dumb, Yes get baptized! That was a super sweet story to hear, and really I know she was chosen and we were led there. The thing is I think she has some people trying to influence her away right now, she has a mom and sister involved with another church. We were able to see her the last 3 days of the week, and she couldnt come to church. She needs a lot of prayers, shes way to golden to be led away like that. But ya weve got some really cool investigators for right now.

Sorry I still dont got pictures cause my camara cord was left in my last house, its now in the hands of the mission pouch system which is by no means reliable so well see if ill ever have it. And just so you guys know how bad I am at making decisions my toe still isnt doing that great and I played soccer with it today. You stay classy San Diego

Elder Crisp

Monday, January 19, 2015

January 19th, 2015

Its been a real good first week here in Ventanas. The branch here is a lot bigger than before, it makes it a lot easier to work with members. I just came from the smallest branch in the mission in Simon, so I feel like the whole work has changed a bunch. So we have quite a few investigators, they came to church with us. One her name is ruth, shes like 30 but looks like shes 50 cause Im pretty sure she had a stroke. Its kind of sad, shes raising two kids by herself with a bunch of health problems, and she really needs the help of the gospel. It was cool we met her contacting, contacts for me never end up working out, even coming to church, but she came and she said she really enjoyed it. Another is a family that were former investigators, the family Sandoval....for now theyre prepping for baptism at the beginning of february, but theyre super excited and also need a lot of help in their home, in their relationship.

An interesting thought that Ive had on my mind is about our view of sin. President Riggins always teaches us the scripture from Hebrews 1:8-9, that Christ was chosen because He Loved Righteousness, and Hated Iniquity. Well ya here in this city that I just started in, every single kid has this stupid toy thing its two plastic balls connected by a string, and you swing it up and down and they clack clack clack really really loud and they never stop doing it. At any given time in any given street theres 4 or 5 doing it. It is the most obnoxious and pointless thing ive seen in my life and this whole week ive been so frustrated about the amount of noise that ive had urges to go to every youth here and take it away and tell them how annoying it is. and then it hit me...why dont i feel so strongly and so annoyed about all the unmarried people living together here, seriously like 1 in 20 is married. Why dont I get that upset that people just sit on their porch and drink all day. Why doesnt it kill me so bad that people have to live without the restored gospel of Jesus Christ that I just want to run around all day trying to get every last one to stop living in apostasy. Really it should bug us that people dont have this gospel. I realized Hating Iniquity at the level of the Savior would probably be something like my disgust for these toys, I should probably change my focus this next week haha.

Thats just a little thought I had, a scripture I read that I liked gives us a warning today about the same thing, about sin and righteousness and how it affects all. in Alma 3
10 ; andthe wickedness of the church was a great stumbling-block to thosewho did not belong to the church; and thus the church began tofail in its progress.

The wickedness it talks of here is more pride (theres a super dope talk from President Bensen called Beward of Pride you should listen to it) but really any form of iniquity is what brings not just us down but the church. Love Righteousness

Elder Crisp

Sunday, January 18, 2015

January 12th, 2015

This last week was one of the most satisfying weeks in a while...we had quite a new investigators and people really starting to progress. We had the Plazarte family of 4, it was that referal julia from last week, come to church with us, they loved it. They are super excited for baptism at the end of the month. Theyre way pumped for the stake conference this next week for the Milagro stake, a really great family. The only problem is is that I will not be working with that family or anybody else that we just met in Simon Bolivar, because I had transfers today....a huge bummer but now Im in a place called Ventanas. my comp is Nicaraguan hes name is Elder Gonzalez.

I honestly was pretty upset last night, I was really looking forward to keep working with the family Plazarte, finally we had somebody! After all the hard work we had it was kinda disappointing to not be able to keep going with it. I was telling myself all last night and today, Not my will, but thine be done. Cause the hardest part about the mission is having transfers. I guess its pride that makes me want to stay but either way im excited to start work here in ventanas....its kind of small, another branch, I havent seen too much of it yet but theres a ton of people that are super willing to be baptized. They just dont know it ya I dont have tons of time but this was more just to keep you updated. This week i complete a year here in ecudor! its pretty crazy but i think its growing on me a little bit, this country. To celebrate this milestone, Im going to eat a lot of rice this week. Just like ive been doing for a year. You guys can joing me in that as well.

Elder Crisp

Monday, January 5, 2015

January 5th, 2015

It was a pretty eventful week, I had this ingrown toenail thing for over a month and i finally got it taken out. It was a super spiritual moment. No but ive been walking around in flip flops for a week now. It was really good timing, cause even though i couldnt really go out in the middle of the week, nobody was doing anything here but drinking or blowing things up or being on vacation. New years night was completely loca....over there we just shoot off poppers from 12:00 to 12:05. Here from 10pm till 3 am they were lighting all sorts of stuff up. So News years day was completely dead. So we started work again on friday, and that day me and E Jensen decided to just do a revolution of the work here. We set super straight goals about how we would find new people to teach, how we would work with them, how we would only work with those willing to change. Cause these past few weeks really weve had little output of our efforts.

Our plans and goals were super successful, we contacted and taught quite a few new people, and got a super good referal, a woman named Julia who just adopted 3 grandkids who were mistreated. We only talked a little bit with her last night, but she accepted to be baptized and is super ready to learn. That referral pumped us up a bunch, it was the best Ive felt in a while. In just 3 days we turned this area from being honestly pathetic, just us playing hide and go seek every day with people who dont want to learn, to now having a good list of people who actualy want to learn. Even though we didnt log that many hours we changed a lot and i feel really satisfied.

I was listening to Remember lots wife, a devotional from Elder Holland that talks a lot about making new starts, just looking forward as the title implies. And there was a line he says that stands out a lot as a lesson that i think applies to everybody whos living...
When something is over and done with, when it has been repented of as fully as it can be repented of, when life has moved on as it should and a lot of other wonderfully good things have happened since then, it is notright to go back and open up some ancient wound that the Son of God Himself died trying to heal.

Let people repent. Let people grow. Believe that people can change and improve. Is that faith? Yes! Is that hope? Yes! Is it charity? Yes! Above all, it is charity, the pure love of Christ.

I recommend that talk to anybody at any point in their life. He says that line directed also to people just move on with life, keeping the hope and vision up high. Not to impede the atonement by being miserable. Christ made that atonement so that we can be happy even if we are miserable people, or make miserable choices. Thats it just keep moving forward. Q tengan muy buena semana pibes.

Elder Crisp

1. This is a huge paper mache thing called monigotes, they burn them for new years
2. Me and my little friend from inside of my toe
3. The one photo explanation of Ecuador on New years day