Columbus Ohio Temple

Monday, June 24, 2013

Another Baptism!

Hey Mom,
Thanks for writing, Mike tells me what you guys say on FB too haha so yeah anyways, to address your questions. Yes I would get the coat you got me for Alec. It helps a ton. It helped a ton during the winter cause out here it's like way bitter cold and easily got below zero degrees out here. So it'd be perfect for where he's going. And it works just fine on a bike. I'm glad Dallen's doing great and Alec and also that Ashton enjoyed EFY hopefully that'll be something he can always reflect on! Ha I did make Beecher Burgers. Not as good as his but it my first attempt at trying it like Beecher :) Couple of them messed up but they turned out pretty freakin delicious! I didn't get a receipt with the shirt. I don't think at least. I didn't see one at all. I wanna thank you for the letter you wrote with it though and also the e-mail dad sent. Both helped a ton! I also enjoyed the broadcast actually. It was cool to see and I'm hoping it helps with member work in this area. It'll be interesting to see what happens! Especially with the Facebook.

So I guess I'll start with Lex haha K so I know what you said is true. I'm not all brokenhearted about what happened. I haven't been in a while. Lately it's been weird but just random thoughts will come and they're only positive ones. Just how she was a great girlfriend and did a freakin ton for me and I'm forever grateful for that yeah I miss her. I know I messed up but hey It's all part of learning so now I know what not to do in the future. I wasn't myself and yeah definitely struggling with things in the gospel which was weird cause I never have before. So I think the Lord let everything fall apart so that 1) I didn't do more damage especially to Lex with her being on a mission. Cause she was acting different and so was I so it wasn't a good combo to try and serve the lord like that. and 2) it fully "forced" me to dig deep and fix things instead of waiting and hoping around. So it's been good. I've grown more and just like Grandpa Steurer, My mission took off after it. I know that whatever happens happens and whoever I end up with will be the right one. I still rely on god for that. I'm not worried about finding someone. Ha to be honest I'm totally content with not knowing. I've changed a lot with "always having to have that security" cause since this whole time everything (not just Lex) has been "uncertain" So it's been good for me and I'm learning lots from all this even though I still have rough days and don't give a crap about somethings. But hey I'm human. Most the time I get worked up and bottle things in and just need to vent and then I'm just fine after that and can move on. So maybe I should just write it down then throw it away. Only problem is is I don't like writing too much :P haha Oh well. I'm trying to be the best man I can be and I still have long terms goals in the church believe it or not. But I'm going to try to be the best husband and father to whoever I end up with and whatever kids I have. Ha Lexi is a good goal to shoot for and she's always pushed me to be better so with her needs and expectations I think shooting for that will help me to become the man I want and if it's not her then it's fine I'll still be a good husband and father :) Whatever happens and I know the lord knows what's right and what I need too. So I look forward to seeing what the outcome will be :) I still have all my goals and intentions and plans that I did before the mission and whoever I end up with will be the one I share that with. Like I said previously I've had a couple experiences that help me to keep going even though some days are harder. But hey the gospel was never easy. It wasn't easy for Jesus Christ. It wasn't easy for Old Testament people, It's definitely harder in today's world. but it 's possible, and God has promised his help.  I know that I will never be perfect here on earth. Ha shoot. Look at Boyd K Packer. He says he's still learning. Some days I just wanna say forget it it's too hard. Or what is all this for? When will things get better? But I don't quit. and I think that's all the Lord needs to help get me back on track. Which is sometimes the greatest battle. But I've learned that the little things are definitely some of the greatest tools. And aids. Even though I've heard some crazy things about this church (even true facts that the church doesn't deny) It hasn't changed much of what I believe. I know that men aren't perfect and they had to work out some things as they were learning a long with trying to make things work. The spirit is still felt when I talk about the basic foundation of what I teach. I just gotta do it. Well get better at it. It's been a long nine months but I've learned a ton that I don't think I'll go back on. I wrote Beecher (you'll get the letter sometime this week) Saying how sometimes I look in the mirror and just seem different. I don't see the "twinkle" I thought I once saw. and My face looks different. haha I can't tell if it's being tired or having bad headaches or if it's me getting older or what haha I dunno but I'm trying to get it back somehow. I'll have too ask God how to do that one. :P but it's interesting. It's also really weird cause we have a couple kids we're teaching (like Hayden,15 and a new one we got yesterday Spencer, 14) and one kid in our ward who I love Xavier Brown (13) who Look older than they are.. It's crazy and what really throws me off is comparing them to the boys.. haha They fall where Dallen and Ashton do! haha it's so weird... Also hearing Ashton's voice deeper on Mother's day doesn't help either hahaha
So moving on! This week we're having another baptism! Rosemerline is getting baptized :) I'll prolly do the baptism again which will be cool. but we'll see how it all goes. She's I guess the only "Golden" investigator I've ever had. Mike was super solid and I've definitely put more effort in helping him which is rewarding. With Rosemerline haha we don't do much. I'm glad she doesn't have any problems or concerns! or else it'd be different! but she does ask questions and Bro Smith does a good job at answering them and she doesn't have a problem. She is getting better at English and she also reads the Book of Mormon a ton. Prolly more than I do. hahaha is that bad? :P Oh well :) It's cool and we're excited for her. Hayden is a stud. I love the kid! It was funny cause actually this morning I got a text from him saying "good morning babe". And I laughed cause I at first thought it was for someone else (He talks about girls a lot :P) so I sent back "Morning sweetie ;) was that for us?". and he sent back "haha I  just thought you would get a kick out of calling you that you dummy." and so on. It was pretty funny! He's excited about getting baptized and it'll be way good for him at this age. Especially that no one in his family is mormon. Well an uncle who hasn't been to church and is a felon. His dad is Christen and Mom took the lessons but will never get baptized, but they all support him and want him to find a church that he knows is right and he knows this one is :) so it's way cool and I'm excited for him. Mike is doing well. He still helps a ton and we still keep frequent contact with him. He's changed a lot and I can see it. It's cool haha he still swears and all that (which to me just makes me laugh cause he's funny) but now he catches himself and says whoops sorry. and then will say some molly mormon saying. Which is even funnier hahaha. I dunno, it just crack me up. He's witty though and Pebbs (more than anyone else) just throws huge softball lobs for Mike. It's so funny. Oh Speaking of Pebbs. This last week we gave Rosemerline a blessing cause she's not feeling the best (makin sure things are right now cause she's expecting and at first things didn't seems right) So that all went well and she's doing better now. So it was super quick. like under 10 minutes in and out. So we get back on our bikes and I'm getting everything ready and Pebbs is just singing away at his black soul music (actually it's mine cause Lexi burned a CD with it on it) and He loves that music. So anyways I'm used to him just singing all the time. He has 4 songs he chooses from. but anyways side tracked.. He's just getting all into it and I look over and about 20 feet down the walkway of their house there's a black lady sitting there watching her dog turned around with her hand over her mouth and I saw it and just started to laugh so hard. hahaha he stopped and asked why I was laughing and the lady was like "don't stop now" and I said "that's why" to Pebbs. So we tried to make it a teaching moment and she's had missionaries talk to her a little bit before (give pamphlets.. etc.) But now for round two. I was telling this story to the Priesthood on Sunday (yesterday) and used the story and then tied it into proof that even we have moments like everyone else where we're just watering a seed or planting one. Which is what people need no matter what. So don't be afraid to be nice, friendly and try to share the gospel. cause any effort made is counted to god. And one day will be her time to fully investigate the church and decide. And then Bishop (he's a funny guy) asked Pebbs to share the song with us (he shared his testimony of what I just said by saying [which was actually what I was gonna say so it worked out] but if you're afraid to invite your neighbor or friend or anyone you've felt you don't want to break trust or friendship. Go up to them and say "hey, I wanna share something with you and before I do I just want to let you know that no matter the answer it won't change the way we feel or think about each other and our beliefs. I just wanna share something with you that has truly blessed my life" and if you do it out of love no friendship will fall because the Invitee will feel it and appreciate it no matter what) anyways. back to the story. Pebbs sang the song for the priesthood body and I was laughing cause it brought up the memory and he did a pretty good job I must say. :P anyways. That's all for this week! Love you all and hope all continues to go well. Thanks for your prayers and support.
Elder Derrek Bowler
Ps. The two pics are from the MOTAB concert. with the original C4 (It was an exhausting day so that's why I look like poop) but it was good to see Coughlan and Foster. and also Miles. Actually I'm pretty bummed because Elder Coughlan and Foster are now in the Cincinnati mission :( oh well I'll definitely keep in touch with them! K love you guys!  

Friday, June 21, 2013

two letters in one post :)

Hey Mom!
So thanks for writing and updating me on everything. Glad to see everyone doing well! So I'll talk about Mike and all that in a sec, so I emailed Alec a little about the temple I hope he does well. I don't know which is worse. The fact that I never went through a temple prep class and experiencing it that way or trying to go through with already weird ideas haha. I told him that the temple weirded me out and messed with my view of a lot things but that it's something you will get used to and it's the personal things you learn mostly. I'm curious as to what his experience will be. Allergies have gotten better since the shot. I still feel groggy and tired (which that's been my whole mission soo...yeah) but yeah I didn't have to pay for it cause the doctor dude was a member. So like you heard Mike got baptized. We had a date for him for quite a while like I said, He just didn't want me telling everybody about it yet, so he had the interview and decided to go through with it. He was going to ask Brian, his friend, to dunk him but he didn't know if he was going to be out of town or not, so he asked me to do it. I was a little nervous and he was harassing me cause I wasn't beaming with excitement haha (I don't show a lot of emotion anymore. Too tired to haha) but it was definitely a cool experience. I'm not sure what exactly made him decide to do it but I hope he stays active. Especially after we or I leave. We'll just have to see what happens and hope it all works out. It was definitely a great baptism with a good turnout. Tiffiene fell off date, we haven't been able to meet with her in a few weeks. She's been busy or something and not ready for baptism but definitely knows she will. So I'm sure she'll be an eternigator or something like that. Rosemerline (the one from Haiti) is still super solid. The lessons with her are something else though. I think all I do is just twiddle my thumbs a little. Just kidding. But it's different cause I can't ever get a feedback from her or anything. So all we do is just show up, share the lesson, then bounce. But I'm glad she's golden or else this would be really difficult. Other than that. We haven't had a lot of people to meet with. We have had a mini-missionary for the past week and it's been interesting. He's a pretty weird kid, super shy and I dunno.. It's just weird. President was freaking out on how important this is. Like this is prolly the most important thing that we might do on our mission..  I don't know how it's going to be for Arik (our mini) but it wasn't the best week for missionary work. Pebbles doesn't care about missionary work anymore, I practically babysit the kid...  I'm getting burnt-out on even trying anymore and it has just been a very long process of continually fighting. Ha sorry. It's just been a very long week and I'm just getting tired of a lot of things.  I'll be fine in a few weeks hopefully but I'm still staying in Westland. So by the end of next transfer I will have been in this area for 8 months which is so crazy. I hate humidity.. haha I think that's the worst part. It makes biking a pain but it builds character. And so with me staying I assume I'm staying in the Columbus Mission.. I'm not 100% sure on that but yeah. Also last night was pretty cool. We got to see MOTAB here. It was a cool concert. One of the last songs they did was Come Come Ye Saints, and there was a part that kinda helped me out with all I'm going through and it was "Why should we think to earn a great reward, if we now shun the fight?" So that was cool. Also they did Come Thou Fount. which is one of my favorite songs so that was really cool. Others took pics of it so I'll have to get it from them. Also I'll send pics of the baptism and all that on Monday when I write again. Anyways. I love you all and miss you guys, Thanks for your help!
Elder Derrek Bowler

Hey Mom and Dad,
So I don't have much to write about since I just did on Wednesday. So I think today I'll just send some pictures I have! haha Sorry not much happened that's cool to talk about. Mike got confirmed yesterday though so he's officially a Mormon :) he claims he's Morthlic (Morman/Catholic) haha whatever I'm not gonna fight him but I've definitely seen a difference in his countenance since he's been dunked and that's pretty cool. He said he felt something hit him when He was confirmed. haha I told him he would. He's a great guy... It's really weird that he's a member though. I've gone over so many times with him being an Investigator so haha I'll get used to it though :) So with the pics a couple are from Mike's baptism. One with Pebbs and I and two are with Cornia, Me, Mike, Pebbs, and Barr.  Then there's one of us and our Mini Missionary, Arik. It wasn't a bad week with him but I swear it wore me out haha I had to take care of two people instead of one. But it was good. I hope he had a good experience. I was the only one who cared really but that's how it usually is. Then another is of us with Mike after dropping Arik off on Saturday and heading to Breakfast with Mike. You need to see how much food I ate that day... Holy crap... The omelet was a lot bigger than I thought but it was dang good.. So that was fun. Then the last one is of the Columbus Zone before it got all switched around Thursday. We have 6-8 sisters in our zone now. It's crazy haha So I don't have any pics of the MOTAB concert (Ha i forgot my camera) but as soon as I get them from other people that actually took pics haha. So that's really all I have for today. We had a good lesson with Rosemerline yesterday. Hopefully she will still work on the 29th to be baptized. Tiffiene has been hard to get a time to meet with her. It's been a few weeks. So we'll see it still works out there. Hayden (the 15 year old we're working with) is doing really well. We put him on date for July 13th so he seems excited about that. He reminds me a little of Travis.... I think that's his name (the foster kid we took to school).. Back in STG that lived with Donny (the guy I bought the camera from) anyways he just reminds me of him a little. Great kid though. So we'll meet with him this next week :) other than that things are going well.. I know what I said I was just having a bad day... haha. They come I guess but oh well. I'm doing fine. :) Ok so now Cornia sent some pics from Motab but there's more so I'll send those to. (that was a really cool concert) 

Pounding away breakfast!  

a couple weeks ago (6/3/13)

Hey Mom!
Thanks for what you said and for writing. Glad everyone is generally doing well. It's cool to see the person Alec has become recently. Calvin is still Calvin and takes things personally. But one day he'll get better. Also I know that I had bad days, and I know not even Lexi could help with some things. I've always had to fight my own battles and I do look back and look at how far I've come. but things got weird over time looking back, especially getting closer to my mission which was frustrating but it's true. I'm glad Alec is doing better bout that than I did! But I don't know what it is. I just feel different. Like I'm not "me". There are some days where I just lay and think who am I and what makes me "me" so I've been doing some deep thinking lately over the past couple weeks. But I'm trying to dig deep and really find that out and I'm on the path to doing that. Which is good. I know each day is different and sometimes a new battle. But I keep fighting day by day. Which I'm surprised at how I've had the strength to keep going. But things are good. Allergies have been kicking my butt... That's probably what's making everything worse. I run out energy and patience when I'm so miserable. haha It's bad out here. I've had a lot of help from people out here and I've tried a ton of different meds and eye-drops and switching from contacts to glasses throughout the day so I'm surviving (I've lost both contacts while riding my bike haha it was fun for the challenge there hahaha). Anyways last week not a whole lot happened. We had interviews this last week. They weren't too eventful. They had workshops going on while President would take missionaries in to interview with them. The workshops were good though. Wednesday I had Elder Campbell from Hilliard with me. He's so burnt out with his companion... I feel bad. I know I couldn't handle Elder Horsley but E. Horsley tries. Elder Campbell is a stud!! I would love to be his comp sometime! We went and picked up a former investigator. His name is Hayden Allen and he's 15 years old. He is such a cool kid.. Super nice which is surprising cause his home life isn't the best environment, But we got him to church and one of the young men (Xavier Brown who is probably my favorite kid in the ward) was awesome and took Hayden under his wing and Hayden really enjoyed it. We have to go through the lessons again with him which isn't bad at all. It'll help him be more solid in the long run. We weren't able to have a lesson with Tiffiene this last week. I'm praying things are going okay there. Mike has his interview with President today so I'm hoping that's going well. Whatever happens is what needs to. I'll always love the guy whether he gets baptized or not. He's definitely grown a ton whether he thinks so or not. We fasted for him yesterday and that'll help with whatever needs to happen. We also were able to meet with Rosemerline on Sunday. They really are the most interesting lessons. We mostly just say a couple things and Bro. Smith teaches it. She's golden so I'm not too worried about her. Her husband (Robin) wants her to have this crazy strong testimony and spiritual experience cause that's how it was for him... But she's already so spiritual so it'll be different he just has to get that through his head. Also Sunday I bore my testimony which I haven't for a while. It was one of those awkward "no one's getting up so I will" kinda things. Even though I hate getting up in front of people. It wasn't anything super powerful or spiritual but just simple. There are some things with this gospel that I can't deny, granted I question them sometimes but I think that's just to keep myself in check, but even after all the anti that I've heard I've recognized that when I hear that stuff it doesn't sit well and I know it's not from God. Mikes disagrees to some extent because "That's all I've ever known" Which is partly true. I've learned more and had my testimony tried a lot more than back home. But I've been able to really find more out for myself really what I believe. I know this gospel changes people. It doesn't matter what you believe. This will add more to your life than you think. I'm trying each day to really know my relationship with God and trying to see his hand in my life. Some days aren't easy but I still make it. I was talking to Elder Cornia a couple days ago and he asked me if I could go back and start over would I go on a mission. I responded if I knew that I would have to go through what I did I say heck no. I'm grateful for the people I've met, the places I've seen, and the experiences I've had. I don't think I'd want to do this again till I'm fartin dust and where Nana and Grandpa are and I probably won't be the guy who wishes I was back on my mission. But I know it'll be worth it in the end and the more I'm out here I know my testimony and faith increase even when it doesn't seem like it, and I know I will be always be grateful for making this decision. Some days I just don't feel that way ;) . I gotta do better at recognizing things so I'm working on that. I just don't have the energy but I'll keep working on it. Love you all! Miss ya too! 
Elder Derrek Bowler.
PS. The pics are me with this awesome turtle I found walking in our parking lot of our complex (don't worry I let him swim in our tub [it was cute haha] and then I let it go) and the other is of this awesome Crepe I made and had to take a picture of it. We had it for dinner with our Ward Mission Leader who served in france. Other than that I don't have a lot! K Love ya guys! 
PSS. Thanks for the pictures and the quotes. I really appreciate you for doing that mom! 

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Investigators set a date!

Hey Mom and Erryone! 
Sorry it's late. Our P-day kinda got screwy with it being Memorial Day and all that. So I found a way to write. Anyways. Thanks for the e-mail, and I also got the package this week. I'll send back the garments to switch them and also the shirt doesn't fit. It's too big. So I don't know if you want me to send it back, but that's what imma do. K so cats? haha What the heck? They're cute, but I'm not a cat fan. Let me know if a hawk or an owl gets it hahaha sorry it seems funny. Thanks for the update on the boys! Alec would win a laptop. That's good for him.  So anyways this past week wasn't too bad. We have three investigators on date and that's more than I've ever had at one time. We only got a couple investigators last week. But whatevs. So really I don't have a ton to report on or anything that I can really think of. We had the chance to teach the young women about missionary work and how they can be missionaries at home. It's funny that some people get so worked up about how to do that. But the easiest way is to be a good friend and to not be afraid to share why you live the way you do. You don't need to get super in depth or start throwing deep doctrine crap at them cause that's what they hear anyways and they don't understand the basics. You gotta build the foundation before the upper levels. The easiest thing for anyone to do is explain about the BoM (introduction of it) and then bear testimony. Nothing to extreme but why the BoM and this gospel has blessed your life and that it's nothing crazy like what most people hear. And that's usually enough to get the message clear across. And if they're not interested then don't worry bout it. It takes people 7-9 positive interactions with the church to even consider investigating. We also were able to teach Tiffiene up at the church, we went over the Plan of Salvation and also extended a date to be baptized! ha so she's on date now and it's awesome! So pray for her. She needs to work things out personally so hopefully it all goes through well with that! Mike has his baptism interview next Monday. He's still just curious to see where President takes his interview so I won't give a date to you guys just yet. Just know he's getting progressively closer. He's still super awesome as always. We went to the driving range with him on Saturday and that was pretty fun. I sucked it up though! But it was way good. We also put RoseMerlin on date too! Which is awesome! It's interesting cause I can't understand anything she says but Brother Smith (our ward mission leader) gages it all for us. So he says she's a golden investigator so it's cool. Other than that things are going good. Allergies are still kinda slowin me down which isn't too bad. But I have been doing some thinking lately and I still don't feel like myself all the time (Like how I was before the mission all happy and content and all that) So I'm trying to get back to the little things I should do to get that back. Sometimes I feel like it's hard to do that as a missionary. But I'm working on it. I met with Doctor Sullivan this last week also. That was good. It's interesting lately I've just had a lack of desire to keep fighting but I still do. I've had a lot of anti and weird stuff thrown at me. Which doesn't bug me but it's crazy the kind of things you run into as a missionary. So It's good to know that my testimony isn't really affected by the stupid history of the Church that's out there. We have mini-missionaries coming in and I don't feel like having to babysit someone but hopefully that all goes super well that's in a couple weeks. We have interviews with President this next week also. I dunno I've never really loved him. I think my first interaction just kinda put me off. But he's a good guy and a good leader. There's just some things that bug me... haha But that's life! Anyways. Sorry it's not much detail. Just know I'm doing good and all is well. I'm happy the boys are doing good and that you guys are getting work! I love you all and appreciate all you guys do. 
Elder Derrek Bowler