Monday, June 29, 2015

Happy Birthday Companion!

It was my companion's Birthday this week!

We saw some pretty sweet miracles this week! 1. We stopped at a gas station in Hope Idaho to use the bathroom. Hope is a tiny town in the Clarkfork branch boundaries. We started talking to the cashier and she told us that she accepted Christ about 3 weeks ago. Apparently she just got out of Jail and while she was there she realized that there was a God and that Christ was her Savior. But she said, "I have no idea what I'm doing". So we told her that she needed to be baptized. We had a great conversation about how God would help her in her life. She started crying right there. It was kind of interesting because while all of this is happening people are coming in and out of the gas station and buying stuff. But the spirit was really strong. I'm excited to meet with her again. 2. Later that day we were driving the streets of Clarkfork and we saw a lady walking her dog so we pulled over and handed her a card through the window. We told her that we were messengers God and he wants you to be baptized. She said, "Ya I've actually been thinking about that" I'm stoked to meet with her as well.

Well I love you guys!
-Elder (Andre) Johnson

Monday, June 22, 2015

Ready to have your mind blown?

Ready to have your mind blown away with doctrine?

D&C 78:18 "And ye cannot bear all things now; nevertheless, be of good cheer, for I will lead you along. The kingdom is yours and the blessings thereof are yours, and the riches of eternity are yours." 

This scripture has meant a lot to me lately. I've grown in my understanding of the depth of the love that God has for me and how much he wants me to feel that everyday. I've learned that we as people create expectations of how good or successful we should be. But rarely do we actually meet these expectations. The result is stress, discontent and mental turmoil. But that is not the way that God wants us to live our lives. We can be happy even though our lives aren't perfect. "And ye cannot bear all things now" You can't do everything right now. You're no perfect right now. You're not going to achieve every goal and expectation right now. But its ok. "Nevertheless, be of good cheer" God wants us to be happy. There is always something to be happy about and have joy in beholding. "For I will lead you along" God will make you become what he wants you to become if you trust in him. Don't willfully take on stress and anguish and put off joy and gratitude in an effort to be "that great person you think you should be" or to be "the best at something". Trust in the Lord. That he will make you become exactly who he wants you to be. "The kingdom is yours and the blessings thereof are yours, and the riches of eternity are your" Those who follow this counsel have a bright future. The Kingdom of God and eternal life. 

There you go. Use your knowledge of this doctrine wisely.

Love ya!
-Elder (Andre) Johnson

Monday, June 15, 2015

What I've been learning lately

I have no idea what to write about this week so I'm just going to go for it. 

Ha! Oh yeah! Cool thing that happened this week was Elder L. Whitney Clayton of the Presidency of the Seventy came and spoke to us. It was pretty sweet! I definitively (spell check changed that word. I'm just going to leave it.) felt the spirit. Meetings like this are much more difficult though now that I am in Sandpoint because it takes about an hour and a half to get to the Spokane Valley Stake Center where all the big meetings are. He spoke a lot about how we should remember the things that we learned from the Mullens. We are getting a New mission president in about 2 weeks. President and Sister Dymock. They are from Utah. Thats going to be crazy. It will be interesting to see what changes come to the mission. 

Well recently, and when I say recently I mean like the last few months I feel like God has been teaching me an important lesson. Life doesn't have to be perfect for me to be happy. Its something that I and many other missionaries have struggled with. We have expectations of the way things should go and the results we should get but when it comes down to it things fall short of our expectations. But its ok. Sister Mullen was talking about it as she was giving her last testimony to the mission as a whole this last week. She said I'm am going to focus on all the things that went well on my mission, not all the things that didn't happen. Man I've realized that life, not just missionary life, but life in general is so much more happy when we don't burden ourselves with expectations of the way things go and just live. Anyway. That's what I have been learning lately. 

Love you guys!
-Elder (Andre) Johnson

Monday, June 8, 2015



Sandpoint is sweet! So turns out we cover 3 units. Sunnyside ward, Clarkfork branch, and all YSA aged people in the Sunnyside and Clarkfork areas. The area is hugemongous! Good thing our area is a full time car area... oh what did I say car? I mean full time truck area. Boo Yah! Miles wise we have 100 to use every day. And we use it. Elder Baczuk (One more reminder that his name is pronounced Bay-Zuck) Is awesome! He's crazy. Super random and spontaneous but he is awesome.

God is at work here in Sandpoint. I've seen quite a few miracles since I've been here. I got here Tuesday evening. We had a lesson with a recent convert then went and tried their neighbors who are a Part Member Family. When we pulled up there was a 20's year old guy out smoking. He said, "Are you guys LDS? I almost came to your church last Sunday, but I thought I might not fit it." We assured him that he would be welcome coming to our church. And he agreed to come! He didn't. But he shared with us that he has been looking for a church for him and his wife to raise their children in. Next miracle. We were at a members house for dinner and one of their neighbors came over talk some business. He introduced himself to us and asked us about missionary service. We asked him if we could come share a message with him and he said that was great. It was too easy for God not to be involved there. Next. Last night we went to contact a referral. It was a guy named Kelly who supposedly works at a cafe and lives on 22 jensen. We drove out to the area where we thought Jensen road was but found nothing. We wondered down random dirt roads but never found it. We did find a Jenkins road however. But it was quite far from the general location that we thought Kelly lived. So we looked at the house numbers and there was no 22 but there was another house in the 20's. We pulled over in frustration and said, well we're here for a reason. So we went and knocked on the door. Amber answered the door. Turns out she is Kelly's Girlfriend! She was very surprised that Kelly was interested and was pretty standoffish to us. But as we talked about families she completely changed and asked us, "So do you feel like growing up in the church helped you to be quality people?" The way she said it made us think she was asking if we thought we were better than other people. But turns out she was very sincere because she wanted her kids to be raised with more structure. It was sweet!

There were more miracles but I don't have time. I love you guys!

-Elder (Andre) Johnson

Monday, June 1, 2015

Transferring to Sandpoint Idaho

Transfers were this weekend. After my 7 1/2 months here in cheney I will be transferred to Sunnyside ward in Sandpoint Idaho to be Companions with Elder Baczuk (Bay-zuhk). Man I'm going to miss Cheney!!! But It'll be great going to Sandpoint. I hear it's a pretty boony area. Thats the missionary term for there are more deer than people in your area. But I also hear that its beautiful country and there are mountains. I haven't seen real mountains since I came out. They have a few here that they call mountains but they aren't.

We saw some pretty cool miracles in Cheney this week. I've really found it productive when I am street contacting to have the attitude of "this is God's work and he is preparing people. If they aren't interested thats ok. I'm here to find elect people" Anyway we were walking down the street and we saw this girl about our age sitting in a parked truck smoking and reading a book. Both Elder Bowring and I judged her at first. She didn't look like someone that would be too interested and just a few weeks before we had had a semi contentious conversation with someone at that house. We almost kept walking by but last second we turned and started to talk with her. Turns out that she had come to our church several times with one of her friends. She also had received a Book of Mormon and had read it 5 times! She bore her testimony to us how the Book of Mormon helps her when she is feeling down. She also told us that she had recently been trying to get in contact with one of our members but she lost contact info. So ya that was sweet.

This is Bob. He's the one who we helped put siding on his house. He almost came to church last week. He should come this Sunday. He has completely changed since we first started meeting with him.

This is Juanita. She has been a member her whole life but started coming back to church in January after 40 years of inactivity. I'm am going to miss her!

Well I love you guys! Keep doing missionary work! if you live in Utah and aren't sure how to do missionary work with so few nonmembers. My suggestion is become friends with nonmembers. Have them over for dinner, drop off cookies whatever. Opportunities to share the Gospel will naturally come. "They don't care how much you know until they know how much you care". Another phrase i'm making up on the spot is, "you won't know what to say until you start doing missionary work for them and not for yourself" Make sure that they know that you don't judge them for their decisions. They feel that way all the time living around so many mormons. Don't be afraid to get a little cigarette smoke on your clothes if necessary. Keep your gospel conversations very very simple. My last suggestion is don't get discouraged when they say no. Its gonna happen. If a wayward child said no to the first time you invited them back to church would you give up on them? No. Your friends are the same. Love them. Be patient. Invite them. Anyway I went off way longer than I thought I would on that thought.

Love ya!
-Elder (Andre) Johnson