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.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

That is the greatest thing that you can become!

   I apologize for the late email day. I hope you got some pictures of what we were out doing all day yesterday. It was a lot of fun. Yet another trip to Santa Cruz! What a good time. I will be sending a lot of pictures this week!

I did enjoy my extra hour of sleep on Sunday! It was a much needed hour of sleep too!  Also, this week I was at a baptism, not Lanes, and they played a Mormon message and I am positive that the one Mathews girl, I am blanking on her name, I feel like I should remember it, she was in it. It was about all the different church history sites. She was in the Joseph Smith home in Palmyra talking about it. Please let me know if I am crazy!

    We had such a great week! Lane got baptized! It was so incredible. He has been on such a long journey with his family not supporting him most of the way.  He has been such an amazing example for me and my companion. His faith is so strong. The baptism went really well. His girlfriend and her family came out to support him and also one of his high school football coaches. There was a really good turnout of people that came and a lot of people who had been part of Lanes journey were able to share their testimony on seeing him and the example he set for those who were around him. I am so proud of Lane for taking this step even in the midst of all the challenges that were in his path. If I can have faith equal to lanes then I know that amazing things can and will happen. The great part is I CAN have faith like Lane so I will do everything I can to trust in the Lord. I sent a photo of the baptism. Be warned we are a very good looking group. :)

  We had another amazing thing happen for us this week. So if you recall in my last letter I talked about a guy that walked into church on Sunday and was super cool and wanted to learn more about our church. So last Monday we invited him to come to our dinner with us. Our dinner just happened to be at Google headquarters which was super cool. I also attached some photos of the Google trip. Unfortunately our new friend is not in any of them.

Thanks to Google Map, he visited home!

   So back to the point, our new friends name is Logan and he just moved from Arizona about three weeks ago. We asked him at dinner what led him to the church on Sunday and he proceeded to tell us the story of his journey. He said it all started about two years ago. He was a devout atheist and didn't believe in anything. He had been living his life like that for a long time and one day after a series of events and realizing that he needed something more in his life he decided that he should look into religion more and specifically Christianity. He started to study all on his own and he searched and searched for something that clicked with him. Nothing. So he decided that he needed to change the way that he was looking into religion. He decided one day that maybe he would just believe. He chose to believe that God was real and Jesus Christ really is his savior and with that attitude he began to study once again. A few weeks after this choice he met his first Mormon. He said he talked with him for three hours about religion the first time they met and over the course of the next month or two they would meet periodically. His new friend told him a lot about the church and answered a lot of his questions. Then his friend got the missionaries involved and for an entire summer him and the missionaries went back and forth, back and forth about various views on various topics. At the end of the summer he made plans to move out here to the Bay Area and work at Oracle. He told his friend that he was close to being baptized but it just didn't feel right. His friend replied to him. Don't worry, I know that in Gods time you will make the choice. Three weeks after he moved he calls his friend back in Arizona and said to him that he had been feeling a lot of inspiration and he thought that it was time. He wanted to join the church. His friend got online and found our ward and sent him to church on Sunday and that's where we met and we come into the story! Long story I know but what an incredible journey! I think of all the different people that must have worked with him and planted seeds with him and helped him understand different things that are important to him. Then I look at us, here in Stanford and I think of everything that we are doing and all the work that we do that seems to not bring any real results. But as we look at the bigger picture we are preparing miracles like this one for other missionaries. We met with Logan again on Thursday and set a baptism date for November 22nd. He is really excited and his friend and a past missionary have already purchased plane tickets to come out for the baptism.

  The Lord's hand truly is in the work. I can not deny the incredible blessings that we have seen this week. I only had time to write about those two but I can promise you that if you go to the missionaries and tell them that you want to achieve a goal by the end of the year that the power of heaven will be on your side and that the missionaries will help work with the goal. I love serving out here. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. This is Gods work and I am part of it! I am so glad that I have another year left.

   I love you all! Keep being amazing! Stay warm and don't let anything take you away from what God wants you to be, because that is the greatest thing that you can become!

Love, Elder Maxwell

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