Monday, June 27, 2016

The Blessing- Week 47

I'm sorry, we don't have any time for emailing today but I love each of you. I will write more next week. Everything is going great! I absolutely love every minute I have with one of my dearest friends, Elder Dutson, in this heavenly place. Thank you for your prayers and support.
Have a wonderful week!

 We found this beautiful little girl and her family last night. We talked to them all about God, faith, prayer, and some other basic principles. I love teaching! I feel so blessed to have been able to teach so much on my mission. There is no greater feeling than finding someone, opening your mouth to talk to them, sharing gospel principles, relating it to them, loving them, teaching them, and inviting the Spirit into their lives for that moment and to see the light in their eyes change and brighten. I love it! What a blessing. 
Anyways, as we were leaving this angel asked us for a picture so we both reached in our bags and I assumed she meant take a picture with the camera while Elder Dutson understood her true desire which was one of the pass-a-long cards that have beautiful picture of the Savior on them. So he gave her that and we took a picture anyways:) 

Keep the faith,
Elder Ricks


Tuesday, June 14, 2016

The Blessing- Week 46

We had another great week here in Lawton! I love Elder Dutson and we are having so much fun together! 

The rain the last couple days has been quite a sight, seeing roads turn into rivers and parks turn into lakes... 

For a miracle this week; We have been trying to see Ryan, Sherita and DJ for the last week since we met with them and taught them about the Restoration and they desired to be baptized and agreed to work towards being baptized on July 9th. So we had an incredibly spiritual and powerful visit with them, set a return appointment and then couldn't ever make contact with them again. Then yesterday, we got home at about 8:50 and decided to make a few calls and when neither of them answered we made the decision to go back out until 9:00 to try and find someone we could talk to. We walked outside and started walking but to our dismay, we saw Ryan and DJ taking out the trash and we offered to help and got to talk to them. He said that he had gone online after our last visit so we immediately gasp for air out of fear of what is the greatest fear as a missionary. But, the response never came, he didn't get into any of the anti-Mormon literature and came out knowing all sorts of things about the restoration and Joseph Smith. We also learned that he is working 2 jobs so he works from 7:00a.m. to 9:00 or 10:00 p.m. most days of the week and that is why we hadn't been able to catch them but we set up another return appointment for a time he isn't working and we got his number. #MiracleAfterMiracle

Of course, we experienced many more miracles this week but all in all, we are working hard, having fun, and being obedient, all of the great things that lead to a happy mission and life.

Keep the faith,
Elder Ricks

                                                              BBQ with the Perry's
 Poor but Yummy Chicken, Brother Perry, Avraham (yes with a v), Sister Perry, Nate.

Monday, June 6, 2016

The Blessing- Week 45

Happy June everyone!

I hope that with school being out and summer being here that everyone is safe and staying busy with many wonderful things because there are far too many better and best things to be doing to fill all of our time with just good things. 
My last few days in Edmond were great and I will always love and miss that heavenly place but I have been welcomed into another magnificent  and heavenly area here in Lawton.
Elder Dutson and I have definitely been staying busy down here in Lawton with so many better and best things but of course, we are not perfect and are always working on repenting and striving to do those best things which are pleasing to God. 
We were able to see many miracles this week as Michael, Marquise, Brittany, Tavion, and Darwina all accepted to be baptized on July 9th. I am amazed at how the Lord has prepared so many people to receive the Restored Gospel and exercise their faith in Jesus Christ. 
Every week I wish I could share with you all of the miracles that happen because they are so great but for a bit of a different miracle:
We were on our way to Lawton coming home from transfers and we stopped at a place called Jake's Rib. The food was delicious and we got so much food for hardly any money! That in itself is a miracle! However, as we were all finishing up, our server informed us that a man had already paid for all of our meals. 
This was such a small but heartfelt miracle and blessing and a testament to me of the love of God and goodness of His children. The light of Christ is in us all which allows and enables us to love and serve in a similar capacity to that which Jesus himself would do. 
Keep the faith,
Elder Ricks

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The Blessing- Week 44


The long and dreadful day has come where I have to say "goodbye" to this beautiful place that I have come to love so much. This is my home. I will work on finding the words to describe how much I truly love this place and the tremendous blessing that every individual has been for me. I am excited, however, to be serving in Lawton Oklahoma with, in my opinion, one of the greatest Elders this mission and Church has to offer! Elder Dutson and I came out at the same time and he is from Rexburg Idaho:) He is absolutely phenomenal and I am excited to be with him come tomorrow morning!

It's been yet another busy, busy week full of miracles and people progressing towards baptism, re-activation, and most importantly towards entering the temple. It never ceases to amaze me just how much God loves us and how many blessings He pours out upon us all! 

We received a call from a member in another ward who is a locksmith that he did a job for somebody that was interested in meeting with us. Brother Mueller picked us up and took us to this man's house and he wasn't home but, we saw a group of people down the road and Brother Mueller takes off towards them. They saw us coming and all 10 or so of them quickly headed for the house. Brother Mueller said "No, wait! Don't go in! We want to talk to you!" They acted like they didn't hear and kept filing in. Wow, what a humbling experience for me. I, who have been called as a full-time representative of Christ and minister of the gospel was just going to pass them up and say "Oh bummer, he wasn't home. Well, hopefully we have better luck next time!" and gone on with life.
 But no, Brother Mueller took the lead and tried to talk to everyone about the gospel. Now that was extremely humbling. He taught me a great lesson and it was a wonderful reminder for me of just how important it is to try sharing the gospel with everyone we can possibly meet. 
With this reminder and renewed excitement to talk to everyone, we started walking back towards the truck and saw a group of kids playing basketball so we went up and talked to them and asked to play. Before we could even establish teams the father of the house came out and said it was time for everyone to go and time for his son to come in and then he shut the garage behind him. We got to stay a minute though and talk to one of the young men, Junior. He just graduated and we quickly taught a principle of the gospel and before we concluded with a prayer, he accepted an invitation to be baptized next month. Brother Mueller's example of diligence and reaching out with love taught me a great lesson and was the source of this miraculous experience. 

Keep the faith,
Elder Ricks

Rusk, Elder Ricks, Tessa, Heidi, Brother Kinnison, Elder Santana, Eva. (FHE, Heidi's last one before going back to Equador)
                                         It's getting to be about that time: Warmer Weather...