On October 16th, Benjamin Maxwell, left his home and family for two years to serve a mission in San Jose, California.

As a missionary: He will teach of Jesus Christ and His gospel. He will have doors slammed in his face and be yelled at. He will meet people from all walks of life. He will stretch himself. He will learn about himself. He will learn of his Heavenly Father's love for him and for all His children. He will learn to follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost. He will serve the people of San Jose. And he will LOVE more than he though possible.

Monday, September 28, 2015

What a great work this is.

This week has been awesome! We got three new investigators this week! That is like a gold mine out here! Three in one week!!! Unfortunately two of the three decided to stop being investigators before we could even meet with them a second time... Ugh, the thrills of being a messenger :) However one of our new investigators is still interested in finding a way to help bring her family together. Is there a better place to bring a family together than within the gospel of Jesus Christ? I do not think so!!! We met with just her this past week and taught her the beginning of the restoration and testified of eternal families. She wants us to meet up with her and her family next time. I am not sure if that will happen before I leave because they are leaving on a trip soon but I hope it does, if not the next missionary will be just as excited and ready as I am. 

I am confident at this moment that my companion is ready to take over the area. He is prepared and I am not worried about anyone falling through the cracks. I have introduced him to everyone and have taught him all the things that we do. He is having a hard time learning the roads and everything though. He will probably have to use a gps when I leave. Haha, I was trying to help him learn how to get from the church back to our apartment which is a trip we make all the time so I told him it was up to him to get us home. I pretended to fall asleep and we drove around for the next 30 minutes trying to get home. He did eventually make it home, it was just a 10 minute drive that became a 30 minute drive. He did learn however the fastest way to get home and has never gotten lost again! (At least not getting home from the church, other places we are still working on...) But we have the important things down, the people. He knows them and loves them. I have handed him the reins of friendship that I have developed with the ward. They trust us and love us a ton! He is going to do some incredible work here before he gets transferred out. 

This is a historic conference! The last time we had three new apostles at once was in 1906! That's over a hundred years ago! Not to mention I am on a mission and conference as a missionary is like Christmas in October and April! Less meetings, more spiritual guidance from our leaders who have been called by God! I love it and am super excited. Also as tradition has it, we get to go to the temple during conference week so we are headed up to the temple on the 8th and then I get to go again on the 13th because I'm coming home!!!! 

As for experiences or miracles that I have seen on my mission...

The first one that comes to mind it the miracle of Stephens baptism. I can't even begin to explain the amount of prayer and work that went into trying to get everything to come together. We did everything we were supposed to be doing we were as obedient as we could be. We called upon God constantly, asking him for help and guidance. After several months of preparation we were drawing close to the day of his actual baptism. Part of the plans we had set up were to do a trial run baptism a couple nights before to work out any kinks that we may have overlooked. This is where God took control and made everything happen. We had done everything we could and then God said, "Good work, but this is how it needs to be done and this is how and when you should do it." That trial run baptism came together so flawlessly into his actual baptism that the only way it could have worked out was if God's hand was in it. All the different details that needed to be worked out all the moving parts that had to come together; God blessed us with a miracle that night. I don't know if the baptism would have been able to happen at another place or another time or in another way. I cannot describe how grateful I am for Stephen and his faith. 

All of the other experiences that I am thinking of right now are all based upon a continual or constant effort of being our best at being obedient . I recall a time when my companion was driving and he took an exit loop way too fast and we somehow drifted all the way around the turn without ending up hurt or dead or even with a scratch on the car. I know that at that speed there was no way we should have come out of that the way we did. We also have this little box in our car that tells us if we are driving aggressively and it didn't say anything. I put that into Gods hands and give thanks for the protection we received.

The last one that I want to share right now is back towards the beginning of my mission. My companion and I were working hard and doing everything we could to find work in our area. We were constantly going. There was no letting up. Yet, day after day we would come home empty handed. Once again we were being consistent with our obedience rather than just giving obedience a shot for a day we made it part of who we are, we made it second nature. Then one day we get a text from church headquarters with a name and an address. This is when we met Golden Gladys. That's just what I call her. We went and visited her as soon as we got the text. She wasn't home but her little brother told us she was working. We decided to go to her place of work and we met her right there and taught her the first lesson right there in the store, prayer and everything. We set up another appointment with her and she continued to express her gratitude to us for coming so quickly and how excited she was to become a member of the church. She is Golden Gladys because she already knew the church is true. She already knew she wanted to be baptized. She was baptized within six weeks of our first meeting at her work. Only God provides individuals like that. He provides them through us as we do everything we can to prepare our friends for this gospel.

I really like these questions each week. I love looking back on my mission. I see times that I had incredible experiences and I see times that I could have done better. I see the moments that I grew the most. I see the lives that I have touched. I see the people I love. What a great work this is. I am so very grateful that I have been a part of it for these two years. I am excited to be on the other side of this work as a member missionary. 

I love this gospel! It is true! I love all of you and hope you have an amazing week!!!!

Love, Elder Maxwell

Monday, September 21, 2015

I am so glad that I got to serve here...

I had the weirdest experience this morning as I was starting to email. For the first time on my mission I didn't want to email home! I know that sounds bad but let me explain. I don't know if Austin and Christian had a similar experience but I had this feeling this morning that I am so close to being home that I don't want to email I want to be there talking with everyone instead! So it's not that I don't want to talk to you all, it is that I want to do it in person rather than over email. Wouldn't that be nice! Only three more emails after this one and then it will be a face to face conversation! I am really excited to see everyone! 

This week has been pretty incredible! We have had a lot of interaction with non members who will potentially become new investigators for our area. We started to invite non members to play basketball with us in the middle of the day so that we can have something to do in those busy work hours and we invited them to invite their friends. We had a three on three basketball game going with four non members and us. It was awesome. And because we were playing in the church we set the terms that we would start with a prayer and a message before we played. We shared the first part of the Restoration and had a prayer and you could definitely feel the spirit there. While we were playing and after we had played every single non member had come up to us at some point and asked gospel questions. They all had a sincere interest in knowing. We invited them all to play again this week and we plan on inviting them all individually to meet outside of basketball to learn more about the church. We hope all goes well and that they will accept our invitation. They are all very cool and would benefit a ton from the gospel in their lives. They would all be attending the singles ward with us, so keep us in your prayers this week so we can have success!  

We also have been doing a lot of work in the Los Gatos ward with the members that are being taught. I have finally been able to introduce Elder Wolfe to all of the people that we have been working with and have been asked to work with. I have been doing my best to help him learn who all the members are and know where they live and the basic layout of the area. It is a tough job to take over an area after only seven weeks. I have been here long enough that I am the human gps for this ward. I know everyone's names, kids names, where they live, who lives close to them, what they do for work and fun, etc... My patriarchal blessing tells me that my memory will be a blessing to me for my entire life. I have definitely seen that on my mission. I go to someone's house one time and I will always remember how to get back to their house. No matter where I am. It has been such a huge blessing. I realize now that i really didn't know our ward back home that well before the mission. I want to get to know everyone better when I get home. Why do we close ourselves off? Kinda weird/funny/not good. 

Top five teaching opportunities... (Toughest one yet) I am going to go with my top 5 favorite people to teach.

1. I absolutely loved teaching Stephen K. He is the most accepting sincere person that I have met on my mission. He was always willing to accept what we taught but always took it to God to know the truth. He was a clean slate, he had no preconceived notions about what he wanted to hear. I think back to teaching him and he was like a child in learning things for the first time and the excitement and joy that it brought him was amazing! 

2. Teaching Max S was also an amazing experience. I fell in love with him and his family from the first time that I met them all. I know I have said it before but the feeling of love that they have fo each other has left an impression on me that will always be remembered and cherished. He was so prepared to hear the gospel and the support that he received from his family was perfect! I love that family so much and I am excited to see the effect that they can have on those around them as they share the gospel.

3. John B, I have some great memories of him and our teaching experiences there. He had him two giant Mastiff dogs and they sure could slobber!!! We had our John B pants that we would only wear once a week because they got so gross every time we were there. He is probably the roughest man I have ever met. He is always covered in a layer of dirt and he was so humble. Teaching him was amazing because he was so willing to have faith and want to know for himself. I remember some incredible feelings of the spirit as we testified to him about the truthfulness of the Restoration. 

4. Lane V was a great example to me. He knew the gospel was true from the first Ike that I met him. Everything he learned was accepted without hesitation. He was a great example to me of reusing in the Lord no matter what the possible consequences. His family did not agree or support what he was doing but he knew it was right and did what he knew he needed to do. The Lord provided a way for him to move forward on a righteous path.  His family has accepted that he joined and are even looking into the church now.

5. Logan R has to be the final one. He had been learning about the church for seven years before we even met him. He had already ready the complete standard works and had overcome his hang ups with all the anti Mormon attacks that he had received over the last seven years. We really didn't have to teach him anything. He was so prepared right off the bat. I remember talking with him in our first lesson over dinner at Google and he said, "I am here to get baptized, that's why I came to your ward." Umm, hello! How cool is that! It was only our second time meeting him and we set the date for when he would be baptized. Quite the intelligent person. He is going to make incredible contributions to the church. 

There are a lot of other people that I would love to add to this but for the sake of length and time I will save that for later. I am so glad that I got to serve here in California at this time! I couldn't imagine serving anywhere else. This is where the Lord needed me!!!!

Have a warm week and have fun! I love you all a ton! See you all in three weeks! 

Love, Elder Maxwell

Monday, September 14, 2015

One of the more interesting ways to do missionary work.

This has been another great week! We have had a lot of fun and a lot of success with the returning members in our ward. As far as our investigators go they all bailed on us this week but we still feel successful because we were able to stop by and help a lot of our members. 

One of my favorite stories of the week was when we had just gotten out of a meeting and we went to stop by a very inactive member of the church. We stop by and visit him and his wife every once in a while and we always offer to help him out around his house. He is an elderly man and there are plenty of things that he could use some help with. He has never taken us up on our offer. This one time though, as we stop by in our white shirts and ties he says that he has a quick project for us to help him with. The word 'quick' reassured us that we would be able to get it done with no problem in our shirts and ties. We get out back where his 'quick' project is and there are two huge slabs of concrete that used to be steps down from his house that he wanted moved. We are talking 6'x6'x2' slabs of solid concrete. TWO of them! There was no way that were were moving them how they were because they were probably 1000 lbs each, so we asked him if he had a sledge hammer... For the next 1.5 hours we swung a sledge hammer at concrete to break it apart into movable pieces. Remember that this entire time we are in our white shirts and ties and just to make it a little bit more fun Mother Nature decided to have it be 102 degrees out that day. We were sweating like pigs. So gross, but we got it done and he was amazed that we were able to break them apart and move them. He didn't have too much faith in our ability to accomplish what he had asked us to do. I think he was trying to give us a job that he thought was impossible but we made it happen! He was very pleased with the work that we did. I am really happy that we got to help him and that we were able to swing a sledge hammer. Takes me back to the good old days of splitting wood! Which reminds me that I never split that wood for the Wolfe Family... I owe them 2 hours of wood splitting I think. I feel very accomplished after helping them out in their yard. Unfortunately I only got one video and no photos. The video is only of my companion too, and he makes it look easy in the video but trust me it was not very easy. Most of the time it would take about five or more hits to get the concrete to split. Ill send the video so I don't sound crazy.

We also had a really good meeting with a less active newly wed couple. They are super cool! We had a family home evening with them on Monday last week and it was fantastic! We shared a message and played a lot of board games with them. We talked and really got to know one another. They are super cool because thy are real with us. They expect us to be ourselves and they are themselves with us as well which makes everything so much better. When nobody is sheltering themselves behind walls then everyone is a lot more comfortable around each other. We had a great night and I lost Apples to Apples by a long shot. Wasn't even close to being competition for the winner. We taught a lesson about how sacrifice brings forth blessings and we got into a really good discussion about why they are not coming to church and we learned that they know the church is true and they know it is what they need but the reason they come is because there is nobody in the ward that they can relate to. Our ward is relatively 'old' people or families with little children. There honestly nobody in our ward that is in the same situation that they are in. Newly married without kids. So I can understand how they would feel like the ward wasn't a very good fit for them. I am not sure what direction we should head in with them but we are counting on the spirit to guide us and help us to do what we need to do!

We also have an investigator right now who has been meeting with missionaries for the past year. He is not technically in our ward but we have been asked to work with him for a specific reason. He has a strong testimony of the church and knows that he needs to join but he has a phobia of people touching him. And its not just some thing where you are scared of a spider, it is an actual medical condition that I don't know what it is called. But he wrestles with missionaries to help him get over his fear. He has to take a drug right now that essentially makes him 'high' so that he can tolerate people touching him. He wants to be baptized but he doesn't want to be 'high' while he is doing it so the wrestling is a therapeutic way for him to be able to get used to people touching him and he slowly works his way off of the drug while wrestling and it will prepare him to be baptized. A lot of details and pieces that go into play that I don't understand but our mission president asked us to help him out on Saturday mornings so we started this past Saturday wrestling him. I am not a wrestler but I did my best to hold my own against him. What really happened was we would wrestle until he made me tap and then we would go again and again and again. It was fun and I got a really good workout. One of the more interesting ways to do missionary work. But we do it early in the morning so it does not take away from our prime Saturday proselyting time.

As you said I haven't really had FIVE areas, but I have had amazing areas my whole mission.

My area that I was most excited to go to when I got the transfer call was the ASL Branch in Fremont. I was so happy and ecstatic and bouncing off of walls at that transfer meeting. I loved serving in that program because of the wide range of coverage that we had. We could go anywhere and do anything across the entire mission! I was able to travel and visit places that most missionaries don't get to do because it would be disobedient. I was able to go to San Francisco, Oakland, Concord, Fairfield, Monterrey, and Santa Cruz, all while living in Fremont. How lucky we were! And we were doing missionary work in all of those places! I got to travel and see the whole mission even though I haven't served across the whole mission.

I Loved Stanford a ton because of the atmosphere that was there. There is something about serving in an area with only people that are young and single and are doing exactly what you would be doing if you weren't a missionary. Which means that we were doing all those normal things but with the mindset of missionary work rather than the mindset of getting married. It was such a cool experience and unlike any other area in the mission. I cannot compare it to any of my other wards because it is so unique. 

Los Gatos ward has been such an incredible ward to finish in! I absolutely love the people here and because I have gone through a companion each transfer here the ward loves me because I have been consistent. There is so much knowledge and experience here in this ward and I have gotten so much great advice from very successful people for the rest of my life here. It has been the best place to start the adjustment to the real world again. I love this ward so much and am so glad that I get to finish here. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else.

I served in three other areas on my mission at the very beginning but I can't think of anything that really sticks out as a learning experience. I feel like all the transition at the beginning of my mission from Spanish in Greenfield to English in Irvington and then a quick change to Central Park was all preparing me for the rest of my mission where I just stayed in one place for a really long time. That's all that comes to mind. Besides training my son Elder Freeman. I loved that transfer. He is such a stud and he taught me so much and has turned out to be such a great missionary. He was already a great missionary the day he started his mission. He is now serving as a zone leader up in Menlo Park where I previously served as a zone leader.

I love you all! That is time and I have wrote a lot. Have another great week!

Until Next Time,
                Elder Maxwell

Monday, September 7, 2015

All of the hard work is paying off.

This week has been amazing!!! All of the hard work is paying off. We have been trying and trying and trying, and now it is time for success! It may have something to do with all the students returning to college this past week.  This past Tuesday we hosted a free lunch for all of the students on campus at our institute building. So it was our job to go out and invite them all to come and join us for a free lunch. I can testify right now that there is no easier way to talk to someone than when you are offering them free food. Nobody brushed us off. Everyone was kind even if they couldn't make it to the lunch. We had some really cool experiences with people. I was going out with Elder Masima to talk with people and we weren't having much luck inviting anyone in. It was hot and we were tired so we decided to go and stand in the shade. So we stood there and as we were standing there the first two guys to see us waved to us, so we went and talked to them and they decided that free lunch sounded great. We walked with them into the institute building where there were six more missionaries. We showed them where the food was and snuck out while they were filling their plates. We wanted to go back out and find more people! Right as we left the building we saw a brother (darker skinned like Masima) walking away. I told Masima he needed to call out to him. So he called out, "Brother! Yous eaten?" He was a little confused but he asked him again if he had eaten and he said no so we brought him in to the free lunch. Same thing as before, we snuck out while he was getting food and left him in the hands of the other missionaries. We found a couple more people doing this and once there was a good number of non members inside we went in got food and started making friends. There were 13 non member friends in there on Tuesday. Almost all of them said they would be back tomorrow! So cool! The hope is that eventually this will lead them to taking an institute class or meeting up with us missionaries. Give people free food and they will hear you out for a minute or two an that's all you need to let them see that there is something special here. 

We also had a lot of success in Los Gatos ward this week. We have been trying relentlessly to get this less active newly wed couple to let us in to visit them but have tried in vain for the longest time. Until Friday night! We stopped in Friday night and they were both home. They welcomed us in and initially they only had ten minutes for us but we stayed for probably two hours just talking with them and it was amazing! We got to know them well enough and they invited us over for dinner tonight! So we are going to go have a FHE with them. Games, food, and a message. It is great! We are making huge strides with them even if it just means they are friends with missionaries. 

I have gotten the feeling that with such a little amount of time left that the remainder of my mission is going to be spent finding people that will join the church after I leave. Although I am convinced that there is at least one more individual that need me to play some sort of influence in their conversion process. Because of that there is not an option to slow down or kick the bucket of being a full time missionary early. Fight to the end. It's not worth it to give up. 

My five favorite mission companions huh... This is super painful, so hard to do Face savoring delicious food
Now I won't put them in any specific order. This is just a random list of five great companions.

First, Elder Kirby. He taught me a lot about what it means to be a good leader. The way that he showed genuine love for each and every member of the zone is something that I have taken with me and will continue to practice for the rest of my life. 

Second, Elder Jensen. Can I say he was great because he taught me how to be patient? He was a super fun companion because of the crazy things he would do. Or the crazy bad luck that he had. So many good memories with him and a lot of laughs. He is the companion that taught me not to get hung up on the little things. 

Third, Elder Olenslager. My first companion. Taught me what being a missionary is all about. How to work hard. What we teach was always on my mind with him. I really learned the gospel basics from Preach My Gospel with him. He definitely set the course of my entire mission.

Fourth, Elder Reid. He was the first companion that I had that understood what it means to work had and have fun at the same time. We never had any arguments and got along really well because we were both super happy to be working hard and having fun with the Stanford YSA.

Fifth, Elder Hamilton. He was a ton of fun but also caused a lot of stress. Being his companion was a huge learning experience. I learned how to forget about myself and focus on helping others. He taught me a lot through his struggles. I really learned how to reach out. 

I could probably do one of those for all 17 of my companions but it would take way too long so there it is. 

This week has been full of blessings. Never doubt that God will provide as we are diligent and do our best to do his work. In his own time he will provide. He always has and he always will. I know that is true. Keep pressing forward. 
Have a great week! Have fun starting school but not too much fun! I love you all!!! I am excited to be getting home 7 hours earlier! 1030 was way too late!!!

Love, Elder Maxwell

Monday, August 31, 2015

Don't delay or doubt!

Abraham Lincoln once said, "Pray like it is up to God, and work like it is up to you."
This week has been awesome!!! First things first, just to make a clarification, I have not been Elder Wolfes companion before but I was his zone leader at the beginning of his mission. He is 14 months out now and I am very glad that he is my companion! We are having so much fun together! We work super hard but at the same time he lets us have a ton of fun! And the members are loving it!!! 
First example is a ward BBQ that we had this past Saturday. It was a BBQ to kick off the beginning of the school year and the end of summer. And let me just put this out there, the Los Gatos Ward can put on a mean BBQ! It was awesome! From a bounce house to ribs! This BBQ had it all! And because my companion is down with having fun while working hard we were able to be super friendly and just be there and have a good time with all of the people that came. We probably had close to 200 people there and only 15 non members and a good number of less active members. The ward council was talking about how to get the percentage of non members higher for future events because the non members that were there absolutely loved it! Everyone had such a great time!!!! We talked to every single person that was there and it was a great way for my new companion to get to know the ward quickly and start to build that relationship of trust for himself. It was such a good night! There was also someone in the ward called as the event photographer. Her job was to blend in with everyone and just be part of the fun but she also had a super nice camera and took lots of pictures throughout the BBQ. The best pictures are always the ones you don't know are being taken!!! There are some good shots of us missionaries. One of us looking like we are teaching someone but really we are talking with the stake president. Hahaha, another of a group of four of us right after the whole thing got cleaned up. And finally, my favorites, the ones of me and the mob of little girls in the ward playing "duck duck goose." They all loved it and I got so many compliments from parents the next day at church about how all their daughters were talking about how cool it will be to be a missionary. The parents loved it just as much as the kids! It was a great BBQ and we had a really really great time. As a missionary you really come to appreciate ward parties especially when the members realize they are the coolest events to invite people to. I don't know any of my friends that don't want free ribs. I love how members are willing to just reach out to people they don't know and become their friend. We don't have to wait for parties or BBQs to reach out to people though! It could be anyone that God wants us to reach out to. We just have to be willing to open our mouths! 

Another cool part of the week was being able to go over to a members home and help them with their yard work. While we were there the neighbor came out and was talking with us so we offered to rake her yard as well. She had recently got a plate put in her wrist so yard work had become a difficult task for her. She was greatly appreciative of our help. It was a small this to do but it was cool seeing how God placed us where we could help someone out even if it was simple. And it was awesome because I love doing yard work so it was a, win, win, win, win, win, situation. Everyone won! So good.

One last highlight of the week was a hike that I went on this morning. We went to Morgan hill and hiked a hill called El Torro. It was a fun hike. We didn't have a huge group of people so it was nice and personal. I love nature! I love hiking! I love friends! I love beautiful views! I love steep dirt hills! I love digital cameras! I love sunrises! I love perfect weather! I have nothing to complain about. It was a good morning and it's going to be another great day and a great week! I am so excited for this last transfer now! It is going to be amazing!!!!

My mission is the second best thing that has ever happened to me! Right behind being born into this family! This is a great work that we are a part of! Don't delay or doubt! Get out there and help our fellow brothers and sisters. I love you all so much! Have a great week!!!

 Elder Maxwell

Monday, August 24, 2015

The week of the final beginning‏

New Companion - Elder Wolfe
Old Companion - Elder Schnell
This has been a fast week! A lot has happened but at the same time a  lot of it is not interesting enough to make a good email so I will  keep to the more interesting topics of the week. Which leads us in to  the most prevalent news around town! I have officially begun my last  transfer as a missionary. Which means there will only be seven more of  these emails! That's pretty crazy. I can't believe I am down to the  end of these two years! It has been good! I have learned some things  along the way. The challenges that I have faced were not easy. Some of  my companions have been a great learning experience, to put it nicely.  And it all comes down to this. One more transfer that is just like all  the others. The feeling I expected is not here. Can you believe it!?  This transfer is feeling just like the other 16!!!

 But on to the details that everyone wants to hear about. I have  received my final companion. He has been out for 14 months. He is from  Apison Tennessee. He is awesome! He can read with his eyes closed! He  can do push-ups without his hands! He can sing hymns with his nose  plugged. You could say he is a man of many talents. I served with him  before, he was in Menlo Park for my first transfer in Saratoga. He is called Elder Wolfe.

 I was also recalled as a zone leader for my last transfer. I am not sure if I am happy or sad about that yet. I found out today at the  meeting so it was definitely sprung on me pretty quick. I really  enjoyed not having leadership responsibilities for these past couple  of transfers but I guess it is time to buckle down and be a good  example of finishing strong for all those around me. I am excited to  do exchanges again!!! I missed doing exchanges whenever I want.

 I am not sure what else to write about! I am excited and happy to come  home! I have missed everyone a ton! I am nervous as well. It is going  to be different. I am so glad that I made the choice to serve. It has  blessed me a ton! I am so happy out here doing the work and being in  California. I couldn't imagine being in a better place. I know that  what I am doing is right. I know that this gospel changes people! I  know that being the son of a bishop is no different than being a  normal member of the church. We are all held to the same standards.  The bishop, the primary teachers, the home teacher. We are all the  same. We are all just doing our best and as long as we do everything  that we can the Lord will bless us and take care of us. He will lift  us as we fall. We all have the opportunity to lift others as we are  doing what we need to do and in the process we will be lifted as well.  This church is a church of love and outreach. Come in and partake of  the incredible blessings that our Heavenly Father has in store for us.

 I love you all and hope that you all get lots of blessings this week!

 Love, Elder Maxwell

Monday, August 17, 2015

I can only imagine how our Heavenly Father feels

This week has been good. We have been really busy! We went back up into Menlo park zone for a baptism of one of elder Schnells past investigators.  It was cool going back to Menlo park. My son, Elder Freeman, is serving up there now. It is always good to see him and see how he is progressing in the mission. He is a stellar missionary. I highly doubt very much of that is because of my extensive rigorous training for his first six weeks. It is good to see that the style of missionary that I am has been reflected in the style of missionary he has become. It is cool knowing that your influence has been taken in and reflected in someone else. I believe this is similar to when a parent sees a child becoming like them. I can only imagine how our Heavenly Father feels as we make the right choices and do what He would have us do and as we continue to learn and grow through our experiences we are becoming more like Him and that has to make Him very happy. It makes so much sense that a Father would want his child to become like Him and then reach their fullest potential. Our Heavenly Father does not want us to fall short. He wants us to succeed in everything we do. I imagine He has such a hard time stopping Himself from reaching out and stopping us from making bad choices. 
This week is already freaking me out. I am realizing now that this week I find out if this is my last area or not. (It better be my last area or I will have some words to share with my mission president!) I also find out if I get to train again or not. I asked president in my interview this week to let me train or to give me a new missionary. We will see what he does. I am hoping for training and staying here. I love this area and couldn't see myself finishing anywhere else for seven weeks. I find out on Thursday if I am training and I find out Saturday if I'm staying.  Pray for me!!!

Love you all! Have a great week!!!

Love Elder Maxwell