Sunday, November 5, 2017

giving talks

This week this member came up to me and asked if he could give a talk. I said "why not." expecting his talk to be 1 min or so. I asked him what he was going to speak on, he said "nephi 1-20." I told him to talk about his experiences and maybe just read 1 verse. He said "okay." Sunday rolls around and he reads all of 1st nephi 1, and 2nd nephi 2 and probs more! It was about 15 mins of just reading!!
Moral of the story: Not everyone should give a talk!

The Berat missionaries didn't know how to use our baptismal font and it didn't hold the water over night! poor kids! President and the APs joined us for our district meeting! Presidents training was amazing!

I called the father of some our investigators to ask him if his daughters could get baptized, because he said no before, and he said they could! that was a true miracle of the week!

We stated to do this new way of contacting where we give people a page of the Book of Mormon with a couple of questions, "what do you think is interesting?" "do you want a free book?" etc! it has been fun thus far!

Spiritual Thought: 3 Nephi 9:13-14 " O all ye that are spared... will ye not now return unto me, and repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you? ... if ye will come unto me ye shall have eternal life.Behold, mine arm of mercy is extended towards you, and whosoever will come, him will I receive..."  After I read this scripture it helped me understand the amount of love our God has for us! He just wants us to come back to him! He just wants us to live with him again! But he needs us to repent and be converted that He MAY heal us! and he will receive anyone who comes unto him!
I know that God loves and watches out for us! He just wants us to return to him!


Have a great week!
Love
Elder Ueston






Monday, October 23, 2017

quotes

Another week! Yes I am still here! This week was good! Normal stuff, I gave a good 15 min talk, we had a half way training, interview with president. Then for Pday we played risk and Frisbee!

Now here are some good quotes from this week:

One of our older investigators said
"I am glad I am getting baptized now! I will be cleaner then all of you because I've already done all the mistakes!" hahah Great learning opportunity

New Investigator said "It doesn't matter how old you are but how old you look" I was inspired!

One of our investigators wants to go to American and submitted his name to go, it's called "The American Lotter." he said "I put my left hand on the Book of Mormon then submitted my name for America.  If I go there I will become Mormon" Too bad he has to use his right hand ;)

My companion woke up and stood up and said "Today's gunna be a great day" I said "are you on drugs?" "even if I was I probably wouldn't tell you." Fair enough.

Spiritual thought: I have grown to be incredibly grateful for the power of fasting! Looking back at all the times I have fasted, I have received all things I have fasted for!  If you ever have a question for God or don't know what to do about anything, Fast!! Show God your desire to receive an answer by fasting, and you will receive an answer!


Love you all have a great week!
Elder Michael Ueston




Saturday, October 14, 2017

2 hour church

This week, instead of having our normal 2 hours of church, we had 3 hours of church! 1 hour of sacrament meeting and 2 hours of priesthood session of conference (and woman's session)!!
Only 2 people stayed until the end! hahaha I don't think we will do that again!

Last Friday! we meet 3 old grandpas! They were all so cute! Hopefully we can meet them again!

Zone conference was great! We went to Elbansan and learned stuff!

We met some cute kids from english course! after english course we meet with them and their moms!

We had a super exchange this week in Lushnje! A super exchange is when 4 elders go to the same city! It was fun! Found a lot of cool people!


Spiritual thought:
I LOVED Tad R. Callister talk about the Book of Mormon from this last general conference!
LISTEN TO IT!!

The Book of Mormon is God’s compelling witness of the divinity of Jesus Christ, the prophetic calling of Joseph Smith, and the absolute truth of this Church.  After listening to this talk, I don't think it could be said more clear that The Book of Mormon is True! I know that this book is true! Read it!


Love you all! have a great week!
Elder Michael Ueston









Monday, October 2, 2017

bukurosha

Bukurosha: (boo-koor-rosh-ahh)the word Bukurosha in Albanian means "beautiful woman." but plot twist we have an investigator named Bukurosha (they do that in Albanian sometimes.)  We see this investigator in the road and my comp is like "is that Bukurosha? "yeah let's talk to her" I said.  We started to follow her when my comp yelled "beautiful Woman" (her name).  3 younger girls look at him, thinking he is talking to them!! Cute mistake.  hahahahahahahahahaha It was great!

Florika and the seat belt:We decided to have a member lesson and invite our favorite recent convert! She doesn't buckle her seat belt! The car lets me know with an annoying continues "beep beep beep" I tell her that she needs to buckle her seat beat, she doesn't know how to! she tries to rapping in around her. Still doesn't stop the beep.  I then decided too teach her how to buckle her seat belt.. she was so confused! But eventually learned!  Moral of story: you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Is* got baptized!Is* got baptized this week! It was one of the most spiritual baptisms I have gone to! Definitely the most reverent!

Pday in Berat!
We hiked! I will send you my adventure pics!

Spiritual thought:
I loved conference this week! Elder Uchtdorf said that President Monson told him to ponder the story of the tree of life. I thought this was interesting.  Imagine how many times He has read this story! He could tell you so much about this "simple" story! He could have even said "I don't need to read this! I have read it hundreds of times before"But he didn't he read and it got something new out of it!We will NEVER stop learning! We can always learn something new from the scriptures!I invite you all to read the Book of Mormon. If you have already read it! READ IT AGAIN! you will get something new out of it!

Love you all!
Elder Michael Ueston



PDAY IN BERAT!!!! We looked at bat caves!




Sunday, October 1, 2017

moonshine

Our investigator's grandson calls me "Xhaxhi Michael" aka "Uncle Michael"
English course started up again! We had a ton of people! It was dope! The kids love me!

This drunk guy tried to get us to drink his homemade moonshine, I declined. (A lot of Albanians make homemade moonshine btw.)

A doctor told our investigators to drink Moonshine and coffee twice a day after his heart surgery because it will "help." UGGGGG!!!! "If doctors are so smart, why are there millions of them"

Church was great! I played the piano, gave a talk, and taught the lesson in 2nd hour. We only have 2 hours! The best part was I didn't know I would be doing any of this until the last second! #Unplanned #WhyPlan?

Spiritual thought:
"Joseph Smith said all things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The central message of all time is that Jesus is the Christ, that He alone burst the bands of death and triumphed over the captivity of hell; and that there never shall be any other name given nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, except in and through the name of Christ." Thanks President Anderson I know that Jesus is The Christ!  Learn more about him!

Have a great week!


Love
Elder Michael Ueston

Saturday, September 16, 2017

amazing people

Stake conference in Durres happened this week! We took a 30 seat bus, we had 26 people come with us! I even met my friend that I baptized about a year ago, and gave him the priesthood! It was an amazing moment!

Missionary work:
Is* is doing great, he knows the church is true and loved conference! he has been bringing us a ton of referrals! He is awesome!
Ti* accepted a date to be baptized. He loved conference a lot! Especially how they talked about the importance of families!
3 new investigators: Referrals that are super prepared and really understood and accepted our message! AMAZING PEOPLE!

Planked for 3 minutes this week, ran a 5k. Basically the fittest person in Lushnje rn! Also for P-day we hiked the Berat Castle!

Spiritual Thought:Families are very important for the Gospel. Families are the most important unit of all time. The book of Mormon is the guide to have a happy family! I am so grateful for the blessings the gospel brings to my family! Family is sacred! Keep it that way!

Love you all!
have a great week!

Elder Michael Ueston

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

My Son

I dropped off Larsen and grabbed Stapleton in Tirane. (hour and a half)
Drove back to Lushnje. (hour and a half)
Thursday we went back to Tirane to grab my son. (hour and a half)
Drove him to Lushnje (hour and a half)
Drove to Berat (45 mins)
Drove back to lushnje (45 mins)
Monday (today) we went to Tirane to fix the car (hour and a half)
Drove back to Lushnje (hour and a half)
For a total driving of 10 and a half hours of driving! FUN!

My son is from Gilbert AZ. His name is Elder Tobler! He is cool and tall. They grow up so fast!

While we were in our area this week we passed out 700 English course flying! At Church I sat on the stand because it looks like I am the 1st counselor now!

Spiritual thought:This week my thoughts were focused on The Power of the Spirit! The Spirit is like a tour guide in our lives. The Spirit will tell you what is true and help you know what you should do to stay on the right path! I am grateful for the guidance in my life!  Listen to the Spirit!

Love you all! have a great week!

Elder Michael Ueston

Elevator selfie 


Elder Tobler and me

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

waffle

This week we got a call from president this is how it went:
Pres: "Elder Weston you are training"
Me: "cool"
Yeah so I'm training and I will probably be 1st counselor in my area as well! I am excited! but I will miss Elder Larsen! Cry emoji.  Larsen BYEEEEEEE! I'm getting my son on Thursday!

This week we had a baptism! Ag* and La*, they brought their families, then they all came to church! We doubled the attendance in sacrament this week! #Blessed! Also Ag* got in the water while we weren't looking before the baptismal service and get all wet! hahah super funny!

I went to Berat for an exchange and ate a really good waffle!

Spiritual thought: I am grateful for families! Family are so amazing! I am grateful for my family and their love for me! I know that I will be with them forever through God's Plan!

Love you all! have a great week!
Elder Michael Ueston






Monday, August 21, 2017

25%

This week concerning missionary work was good. 25% of the people in church Sunday were investigators, and 10% was me and my companion! I will let you do the math!  Found a lot of people. Worked hard! It was great! Two people are going to be getting baptized next week! Life is good!

Now the good stuff: one of our recent converts had a great opinion about Asians. "Asian's all look the same... the thing Asians have is agility, because they use sticks to eat their rice." True!

We are teaching a great guy named Is*, he loves bringing us referrals! That is always cool!

Spiritual thought: Being worth for the priesthood is such a blessing. We listened to a story from President Monson's life when he gave his first blessing and after the guy who received the blessing said "I am grateful you hold the priesthood" and President Monson said "me too." be grateful for the simple things! :)

Love you all have a great week or something!



Elder Michael Ueston

Zone Conference




Monday, August 14, 2017

Berat

This Tuesday I went on an exchange. It was a lot of fun to serve with Elder Stapleton for a day! He is a cute kid!

Today for P-day we went to Berat. They have a castle over there and it is super pretty!

The work in Lushnje is going alright! Everyone is at the beach during August and no one wants to meet because it is too hot!

English course has been going well, we have been printing out random word and phrases and are making the students make sentences! It is a lot of fun!

Spiritual Thought:
This week in the lesson in Priesthood, at church, we talked about the Atonement. The Atonement is truly a blessing and the only way that we can return back to our Heavenly Father. I am grateful for the merciful plan of God. That he has given us an opportunity to repent!

President Gordon B. Hinckley: "No member of this Church must ever forget the terrible price paid by our Redeemer, who gave His life that all men might live—the agony of Gethsemane, the bitter mockery of His trial, the vicious crown of thorns tearing at His flesh, the blood cry of the mob before Pilate, the lonely burden of His heavy walk along the way to Calvary, the terrifying pain as great nails pierced His hands and feet...We cannot forget that. We must never forget it, for here our Savior, our Redeemer, the Son of God, gave Himself, a vicarious sacrifice for each of us."

I invite you to study the Atonement more!


Love you lots!
Elder Michael Ueston


p-day
Elder Weston's new suit




Wednesday, August 2, 2017

trustworthy kids

One of our investigators was a little confused when he misread the word
"Bota e shpirtave" (the spirit world) and he said
"Bota e shqipareve" (the world of Albanians.)
The look on his face was priceless!

We had a lesson about turning the other cheek with our favorite recent convert. She said, she doesn't want to turn the other cheek, but she will hit them 3 times! Her excuse was, "What if someone is robbing you?" I am not just going to let them take my stuff! haha fair enough.

Family home evening last week was a big hit, a total of 3 people came! Not all at the same time btw... I hope it goes better this week!!

We made pizza. It was good!

This lady came up to me on the road, I'd talked to her one time before, and she said "Hey watch my 'store'" aka. table on the road, "I have to go and buy something." She was like 70 years old. We sat there for like 10 mins, then she came back and she was grateful! It was service... I guess. I guess we looked like trustworthy kids! #blessed

I pulled out my butchers knife this week, to cut a watermelon, and with my 90° perfect cut, I cut it right in half!! I also cut the plastic cutting board right in half along with it... I forgot how strong I was... whoops.. that's what I get for doing the fitness game!

After District meeting we got ice cream!

Spiritual thought: "For thus saith the scripture: Choose ye this day, whom ye will serve." Choose to serve The Lord! As I have served The Lord I have felt some of the greatest joys of my life! I invite you all to Serve Him as well!!


Love you all! Have a great week!
Elder Michael Ueston









"Hey watch my 'store'" aka. table on the road 



We made pizza 


We also made a watermelon hammock 







Tuesday, July 25, 2017

convert

President came down to "The Lush" and we had interviews with him! Right before that we were having a lesson with our favorite recent convert!
Our conversation with our recent convert!
Us: "we would have to make the lesson fast because our president was coming."
Her:"so... do you want me to cut some watermelon?"
Us: "no. like we said we don't have to much time"
Her: "well don't worry about it he can wait for 30 mins"
Us: "no. like he is important. We have to be back on time"
Her: "He can wait, no one is more important then anyone else. Just when he calls tell him you are around the corner and then get there in 15 or 30 mins"
I just started laughing so hard!!!
This is why everyone is 15 mins late to lessons! haha

This week was good! I gave a talk in church. Made a game of Jeopardy for FHE using the BoM for tonight! Met people. English course. Pretty normal.

In district meeting I related my dog named Millie to Alma 20 and 22! Pretty much the best spiritual thought I have ever had!

Spiritual thought:
"Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever." Alma 26:12
I am so grateful for Ammon's great example of true worship of God!


Love you all! have a great week!
Elder Michael Ueston




Tuesday, July 18, 2017

new car

We got a new car, a 2017 Silver Hyundai i30! We went to Zone Conference in Elbasan and they gave us this brand-new car! It is so fun to drive too!! Not tryin' to be a salesman but I like it!

We found some cool investigators in the middle of no-where! It's called "Samatic" (This might be the first time anyone talked about it on the interest) And he really likes us! At the end of the lesson he gave us 2 watermelons, and a giant bag of beans!

I don't know what was happening this week, but in Lushnje (my area) they were having so many activities!
--A protestant church had a cool concert. Literally right underneath our balcony!
--For 3 nights there was a beer-fest right by our house, aka on the boulevard, everyday lasting until 12 midnight or so! The best part was that we could here it from out house! **Roll Eyes Emoji** I felt like it was the opposite of the great and spacious building! ;) They did have some good songs so I'm not complaining!

Our investigator, this 50 year old lady, read "Ammon cutting off the arms" and thought it was the best thing in the world!

Spiritual thought: 
This week we had 44 people in church, the most we have had in a long time! We had 43 cups of sacrament water.. So we had to go grab one more cup of water at the end and blessed it for one person! It made me think about how special the sacrament is for each one of us individually. Even if we miss one person, we will bless the sacrament again for that one person! Remember The Savior sacrificed his life for each one of us individually! This Gospel is individual! We all can receive an individual relationship, and testimony of The Savior! I invite you to gain an individual testimony of the Book of Mormon!


Have a great week!

Elder Michael Ueston

Flower ties! 

Larsen and I found some nice hats in the back of the car of a senior couple

OUR CAR!!!!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

4th of July

On the 4th of July, we had a testimony meeting with our New American Mission President! He served in the military so he is very patriotic! His name is President Anderson from St. George. He is super cool!  I brought an American flag to this meeting because it was the 4th! It was a blessing because we sang The National Anthem! All 3 verses, with the flag unfurled by Elder Larsen and I. After we folded it, like we learned in boy scouts.  All of us with our hands over our hearts, except for this one missionary from England. He put his hand on his shoulder haha! And to close we sang America the Beautiful! Blessed to be American!

On the 4th in English course, I taught my students The National Anthem and The Pledge of Allegiance! With the flag in front the class room!

This week was awesome! We had a baptism! I gave a talk and directed the baptism! We made brownies and carrot cake this week too! They were super good!

Turns out one of our recent converts, she's like 50 years old, has been teaching kids to beat each other up, in the road! I laughed so hard!

Spiritual thought:
We watched the restoration movie this week and one thing really stuck out to me. Joseph Smith's message to people concerning the divinity of the church was always based reading and praying concerning the Book or Mormon.  Just ask God if this church is true! It is as simple as that!

love you all! have a great week!


Elder Michael Ueston






Monday, June 26, 2017

Watermelon and Cheese

Albanian drivers:
I love Albanian drivers they are so creative! They love to double park, which is when people are parked on a busy road and they park NEXT TO the people parked and usually get in the way! And as long as they put on their hazard lights and come back before the police come it all works out! It is usually just to go get something from inside a store! While driving here in Albania there is a common rule:
I protect my bumper and you protect yours!
We went back to the farm with the hedgehog and it wasn't there... But this time it was planned service and we pulled out the dead tomato plants and got the green house ready for next year! Then they fed us. I had been told a lot to eat watermelon with this crumbly cheese. It wasn't that bad! :) watermelon and cheese! Try it at home!

We dropped Elder Holding off in Tirane so now it is just 3 beds 2 Elders and 1 giant house! I will miss that kid though!

We went on an exchange, Elder Johnson came to Lushnje with me and Elder Larsen. It went grrreeeaaaatttt!!!


Spiritual Thought: This week I read in Alma 13:27 "I wish from the inmost part of my heart, yea, with great anxiety even unto pain, that ye would hearken unto my words, and cast off your sins, and not procrastinate the day of your repentance"
Alma knows what he is talking about here!
Please repent today! :)


Love you all!
Have a great week!

Love,
Elder Michael Ueston

SQUAD GOALS!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Hedgehog

First off this week we had district lunch in Berat! It went about an hour over.  After we ate lunch! This is me patiently waiting for my food! #Classy



Testimony meeting with President:
President came down to lushnje to meet our district before he went back home, and had a testimony meeting! It was cool!

Here is a picture of him!



How I met my best friend:
We decided to do some unplanned service, when we got to the house of this member with a giant field of tomatoes. We picked a couple of rows of tomatoes in our white shirts and ties, because again it was unplanned.



We didn't pick all of those tomatoes, but we picked enough to help! :)



This is where the good part comes in, when we are done picking the tomatoes one of the children of the member brought over a thing that looks like a ball of spikes. Then it started to open, it was a Hedgehog! Not Low Key it was super cute! And because I am a man, I picked it up and took some pictures with it!






We thought it was thirsty so we took it over to the water and it drank water! It was cute! Then we had to leave, I wanted to take it home but... Elder Larsen said no.... and it's against the rules!

I rang the bell:
We went to an old catholic church. There was a bell out front and I started to ring it! Then the guy who was showing us the church, told us, if we ring the bell people will start to come and think that someone died! My companion is dying[meaning his companion is going home soon] so I didn't feel bad! :)



25 Anniversary of the first missionary in Albania:
We went to Tirane this week because they were celebrating the first mission coming to Albania 25 years ago! It was sweet!


This is Sqiponia




This is how many people were there


It was super cool! And it was awesome to see how much work the missionary have put in to get a stake in Albania.


Spiritual Thought:
I am so grateful for Temples! At the Anniversary they talked about the day when Albania will have a temple. Temples are the house of God and it will be such a blessing for the Albanians to have a temple and not need to travel to Switzerland! I challenge all of you that live close to a temple to put in an effort to go once a week!


Love you all!
Elder Michael Ueston