Friday, April 30, 2010

Another Letter!

Hey everyone! How is life going? Well, this last week was pretty good except for one thing. My companion messed up his knee playing basketball so I spent this morning in the hospital in Provo while he got an MRI. But other than that everthing is great. I am so ready to leave. I am pretty sure I am going to be here for at least a week longer than normal, so don't expect a call on the 17th. I am hoping for the best though. So... I am up to 190 lbs now! I am not fat at all, but I am gaining weight. I don't mind though. We talked to a teacher who served in Mexico and he said to gain as much weight as you can here in the MTC.

So I heard there are some crazy things going on in Mexico. We talk to this other teacher who has a brother living in mexico city and he says it is pretty crazy! I guess that should make me nervous, but it actually just makes me want to go even more. I am so pumped, and not scared at all. I just hope my VISA comes. This district in my zone have already been here for a week longer than normal and half of them got their VISA today and the rest are still waiting.

Mom, how did your talk go? I hope my random thoughts helped. How is everything going? Nia told me that some girl is living in my room this summer!!!! Que es eso? ha ha just kidding. You might need to clean in before she comes, but don't go looking though all my stuff :) I love you

Dad, you better send me some pictures of matthew playing ball. I can't find that family picture you sent with me, so could you guys send me another one? Anyway... that is cool about your work. I hope it all goes down smooth. I love you

Hailey, I didn't have time to write you a letter this week, but I will try next week. How is life? so you are done with spanish huh? well, you can practice on me anytime you want. Hope you are doing great! I love you

Nia, I wrote you a letter so it should be there in a couple days! Don't forget my lyrics!!! lol You are amazing. How did the prank go on Kara? ha ha you guys are so mean. Tell shelby and amy I say hi! I love you
Shayla! Smile for me right now. I am serious. If you are not smiling you can't read the rest of this email :) What is your email address? When I try to send to your email it doesn't work. How is track going? Are you guys almost done? Are you pumped for tennis? I can't wait to watch you take state when I get home. I hope life is good. I love you

Matthew, what is up brother? Dad said you are looking good at baseball. You better tell me how it goes. What is your email? I can't remember it and I want to write you. Are you pumped for school to be done? I bet you are! You ready for the priesthood? you are going to love it man. You better be holding down the fort at home. I love you

Grandma!!!!!! How are you doing? I miss all your cookies and great food. The MTC food is kind of getting boring. I hope you are doing good! I miss you a lot.

I love you I love you all!!!!!! adios

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hey everyone! How is life going? Everything is still the same here, but that is not a bad thing. I think I already told you, but I was put in as district leader two weeks ago, so that has been a good experiance so far. I am so ready to leave for Mexico. There is only so much you can learn from a classroom. Anyway... I thought I should tell you that I can't call on mother's day in the MTC, so don't be expecting a call. Sorry. I am scheduled to fly out on the seventeenth of may, but I don't know what time. We should get our flight plans within the next couple weeks. But... this all depends on my visa. I will be lucky if I get to leave the seventeenth. I will keep you posted. And, I can call from the airport, so that should be great!!
Mom, you have to speak huh? Sacrifice? hmm... Like you said, any sacrafice made for God is always out-weighed by the blessings. I think the key for sacrafice is faith. The more faith we have the less of a sacrifice it is. And, if you think about it, this Gospel is all based on sacrifices. Jesus Christ is the center of everything and his purpose in life was to sacrifice himself for us. In the temple we covenant to sacrifice everything we have for the Lord, both physical and spiritual. in Alma 22:18 King Lamoni's father tells Ammon that he is willing to give up all his sins to know God. Are we? Thank you so much for the package! You read my mind. I love you
Dad, well I am running out of time, but I will try to answer those questions the best I can. It is hard to narrow it down to one experience. Like I told you before, I never had some crazy vision or dream of anything like that, but all the little things in my life that have pointed me to believe in Christ out do any dream or vision I could hope for. Like Alma and Nephi said, by little things are great things brought to pass. The thing I would like to say to all the young men is know who you are, and if needs be, change who you are. You can't change your life unless you change your actions, you can't change your actions unless you change your attitude, you can't change your attitude unless you change your beliefs and values, and you can't change your beliefs and values unless you change your identity. Your identity is everything. Are you a disciple of Jesus Christ? Go home and ask yourself, "Who am I?" And then ask yourself that same question every day for the rest of your life. Anyway... I love you dad. Hope that is what you wanted.
I am running out of time, so Nia, Shayla, and Matthew, how are you guys? I love you guys so much. I hope you are being good examples to everyone. Nia, I have a request for you... will you send me some song lyrics. like ten good songs. like brad paisley, neyo, and whatever else is good. I trust you. just make sure they are good and won't drive away the spirit. I love you all!! Keep writing. I love getting your letters!!!
I love you!
Elder Ricks

Friday, April 16, 2010

can you believe that it's already been 4 weeks?

Alright, well, I wish I had a crazy cool story to tell all of you, but I have something better. This Gospel is amazing. I don't know what I did in the pre-mortal life to deserve to serve a mission, but it must have been pretty good. I know I haven't done anything in this life to deserve such a blessing, so it must have been before this life. I have never felt so good as I have the last couple days. My district have had some pretty amazing discussions and talks. I have come to realize this Gospel is all about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Everything that we teach has to do with Christ. I love it!

Anyway... everything is going great. I don't know if I have told you yet, but I love learning something new every day. I wish you could all feel what I have felt while I have been here. I can't wait to tell you all about it when I get home.

Dad, I wish I could have hear your talk. I bet it was great. I found a scripture about the Bood of Mormon in 1 Nephi 14:7 that tells us what the purpose of it is, and what do you know, it is to convice people that the Lamb of God lives. I love you and I hope everythig is going good.

Mom, thank you so much for the package! I love the tie clip, and I was just about out of food too. You can never have too much snacks here so don't be afraid to keep sending. I love you. Thank you for everything.

Hailey, I hope you liked the pictures. Sorry that my letter was kind of short. I wish I had more time to write, but I don't. Can't wait to hear from you. I love you.

Nia, another Elder is writing you so expect another letter. ha ha this Elder is pretty awesome too. He went to EFY with Haley and Erika Ence back in the day. Pretty funny huh? Anyway... I hope you are doing great. How is track going? You ready to graduate? I love you

Shayla, that is so awesome that you got first in the 100m. Of course I believe you. You would have to be fast from running away from Matthew all the time. I wish I could have seen it. Maybe when I get home I can watch you take state. In track and tennis. I hope you're doing amazing. I love you

Matthew!!!! What is up brother? Are you pumped to get the priesthood? Do you remember what it is? I hope you know how important it is. You have more power than the President of the United States!!! More power that Payton Manning and Reggie Bush combined. They only wish they could have what you are about to get. I am so glad that I have it and Dad is so glad too. I hope you are being nice to all your friends and to Mom and Dad and to Nia and Shayla. Girls are the best gift that God gave to boys. I love you!

I love you all. I hope everything is going great. Never stop being an example. I love you.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Week 3

Hello my family, how has the week been? I hope everything is going good! I am sure it is. Everything is still going great here. Just like I said last week, every day is about the same. I love the MTC, but I can't wait to leave. It feels like I have been here for about two years already.

That is so good to hear that about Kasumi and her family. It sounds like you had a good time. I wish I could have seen it myself, but I am glad I am here. I can't wait to get to mexico and start teaching. I have learned so much about the Gospel that I never even knew about. Just this morning I spent an hour and a half on just one chapter. If you are looking for something amazing to study, go check out Mormon 9.

In out tuesday night devotional, L Lionel Kendrick from the seventy spoke to us and it was probably the best talk I have ever heard. He was so funny but yet profound. He told all the missionaries that the harder you work the more beautiful your wife will be!! And then he said that that is a true priciple. I hope so. He shared some great things and I wish I could tell you all about them, but I don't have time. Re mind me when I get home and I will get my notes out and tell you what he said. That is probably going to be the case with a lot of things. I wish I could tell you everything, and I will try, but you might just have to wait until I get home to hear most of it.

I love you! I love all of you. I will try to send some pictures next week okay? Have a great week and be happy for me.


Friday, April 2, 2010

Week 2

Hey everyone! So everything is pretty much the same every day. I am not saying that is a bad thing, I am just saying that there isn't much to write about. Everything is going great. Spanish is coming along pretty good and so is the Gospel. The one thing I wish I would have done before coming to the MTC, is learn more about the Gospel. I thought I knew a lot, but I had no idea. There is so much more to learn.

Every day is about the same here. Sometimes it feels like I have been here for a year and other times I can't believe that it has already been two weeks. I wish I could expain. I am sure Dad knows what I am talking about, so if you really want to know why my thoughts don't make sense, Dad can probably explain it a little better. Elder Smith and I are starting to get down some techniques and finally figuring out the best way to teach. At the MTC they have progressive investigators for us to teach. They are just members acting, but they are good actors. They never change or talk to you how you did or anything. If you didn't know they were members already, there is no way you would. Elder Smith and I have been teaching one of these "investigators" named Jose Luis Garcia, and we are committing him to baptism on monday. It is exciting even though he is just acting.

Thank you for the packages!!!! They made my day. But.... there is one thing I still need. So, I am going crazy without music here. I am always whistling and singing during class. If it isn't too much trouble, could you send me a harmonica? I know that is kind of weird, but I need some kind of music.

I love all of you so much! I am sorry I don't write much. I will try to write more. Have a great week and I will talk to you next thursday.

Elder Ricks