Columbus Ohio Temple

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

June 25, 2014

Hey Mama!
So yeah. It's either down pouring like none other or it's just really hot and humid. Both are not the most pleasant thing for a bike. We got transfer calls today and we're both staying another one and I just figured I'll die here cause I don't think the new mission president will do anything with me for one transfer. So It's kinda weird I have two left, While most of my friends are all on missions. haha It's ok. I'll make new ones. It's been an interesting week. It went by pretty quick we had some ups and some downs. Since we're staying this will be my 11th transfer on a bike.. Out of 17 transfers. So if I do die here that'll be 12 on a bike. And I swear I gain weight in a bike area. I lose weight super quick in a car cause I have more energy when I wake up and am more conscious of what I eat. On a bike I'm constantly hungry so I eat whatever is available and am dead tired most of the time. It's ridiculous. haha Oh well. It's been pretty hot here. I look forward to the day where I'm not sweating every ounce of moisture in my body haha It'll be weird to not sweat. cause you don't have to be doing anything here and you'll just sweat. haha So yeah. As you saw. We got caught in the rain this last week we were like 3 miles away from our apartment and we were on foot cause we got dropped off by some members. haha so we thought we were fine trying a couple of formers and then we get out of one of the houses and it's just dark outside. And we're like... "Crap....." hahaha so we started walking home and Ohio just doesn't rain lightly. It's a friggin shower. and in an instant it just dumped on us and we got so soaked. haha So we tried to find shelter under some trees and hid our ties cause they were silk (I just happened to wear my favorite on that day) and then we shoved our BoM's in our pants. The trees didn't offer too much protection. We couldn't call anyone for help cause the phone was too wet haha so we just decided to book it to the nearest members house. Which was like a mile or little less away. Uphill. hahah So we're running and we're just laughing cause of how ridiculous it was. haha It's moments like these that make a mission a mission. Who else would brave whatever weather the world has to share something about Christ? haha So we get close to the members house (that's where the pics came from) and this lady stops and asks if we want a ride and we were like... Yeah!! haha So she's like "You guys mormon??" we're like yeah and she continued on to tell us her grandpa was Mormon and died 8 years ago and missionaries stopped by and she said she wanted to talk to us! So it was cool! Lord works in very mysterious ways. haha
Umm Richard and Tina are doing well. They're pretty dang solid. They're really hospitable haha we stopped by yesterday to get a DVD I forgot there and they were like come in! and they fed us Steak and Salmon on the spot and then we read the Book of Mormon with them and had a cool experience! Other than that we're doing a lot of biking and sweating. I do get worried some days cause my body feels like it's gonna fail me some days but the lord helps out with that. It's a weird thing when you can see the Spirit sanctify you. Cause I should be dead by now!! hahaha but I'm grateful for the experience. So some funny things. There's a guy who has super long hair and a beard and kinda looks like Jesus a little. But every time he sees us he flips us off or causes at us. (We had a lot of that this past week being called fags and all that good stuff) We had that happen like 5 times there was one hard day of all biking and we had a lot of crap happen and then just little stuff like that kinda set me off a little. Haha I'm human. but yeah. Interesting stuff. We found quite a bit last week and had fun times with two exchanges. I had E. Peterson here with me on Tuesday and that was really cool. I like him a lot. and then the ZL's came on Thursday. And I had to go get new shoes (well I didn't cause I couldn't find any in my size) but I got a new shirt to come home with so I can burn all the crap ones I have. (Mine are so faded and worn it's ridiculous but they've lasted my whole mish!) and So I just got a brown belt so I can wear my brown shoes cause my other black ones are destroyed and the other ones I wear were soaking wet! haha So that was good stuff.... Crazy. Other than that not much has happened. I'm still trucking along and doing my best. I'm still alive.!! Thank you all for your prayers and love and support! It means a lot! Will you get me Charity's address so I can just write my next letter to her? Thanks!! You can get it through Mike. But yeah. Glad things are going well back home!! Can't wait to see you soon!
Elder Derrek Bowler

Monday, June 23, 2014

June 16, 2014

They got caught in a down-pour!  
Hey!! :)
Sooo First off I just wanna say Happy Father's day to dad! I hope he got the text from Mike that I sent to him to forward... haha but adding to your leaving a legacy thing, you, dad, Nana and G-Pa.. well essentially everyone I've been around has left a legacy. I look towards you guys and nana and grandpa and Beecher and Dourous too as huge influential people in my life. Even Steve and Michelle and Rick and Judi left really great impressions and examples for me too. So I'm very grateful for the legacies all of you have left for me. I'm so blessed to have each of you as examples in my life. I was telling dad that a lot of the things he does and says I catch myself doing and saying. The way he teaches me the gospel in a clear and perfect way that makes total sense to me is the way that I try and share the gospel. I know things weren't always easy raising us or anything like that. But I can tell you now it has impacted generations to come. It'll be a huge blessing for my kids in the future and I was even telling dad, I'm grateful that my kids will have you two as grandparents. I wouldn't have it any other way and the older I get the more grateful I become and the more blessed I feel.
So anyways. I'll prolly keep this one short. I always say that but they still seem to come out long... but this past week was to say the least interesting... We've done more biking, more knocking, more street contacting than we've ever done here and it was pretty fruitless. We did run into a lot of fruitcakes however. 3 people tried to tell us we're brainwashed and doing everything wrong and I just looked at the two guys who said that and you could tell how miserable and looney they were. They were older and thought they figured everything out but their doctrine was so far fetched. I just have to sit back and laugh. I wonder what It'll be like for these people when they get to the spirit world and are like "Ah crap.... I was wrong... this now makes sense to me..."  Then the third guy stopped his car and tried to convince us about the whole Grace/Works thing.... I swear no matter how many times I try to explain it to these people they just don't understand. Even when I say that "No we're not saved by works, we don't earn heaven" they still have it stuck in their head that it's different. So it was really interesting. And just saw nasty things that can wait till after the mission haha and yeah. We did find one investigator though which was good. Got dropped by Gevron's wife.. and then we kinda dropped all the others we've found. So to say the least the last week was a battle but it was good. Our mini missionary did pretty good. He was super tired all the time and I think I now understand the whole being sanctified by the Holy Ghost thing. I still don't know how I function some days. But it's good though. We were able to find some potentials this last week so hopefully that goes well this week. But yeah. Not too much... It's getting hot again though which is lovely.. you desert folk don't know what you're missing hahaha. We're pretty well taken care of though.
So the longer I'm on my mission the more I understand about what it means to be a missionary. And a lot of times it's sad/frustrating to see when people either don't see what that entails or what's needed or when they forget it. Now. I know that when I get home life will be pretty busy. But the thing is just being there for other people and strengthening them in the gospel is missionary work. Just being the savior's hands for someone that truly needs our help, our personalities, our friendship, our love to bring the light and love of Christ into that person's life more fully and clearly. The gospel is so simple and a lot of times we're the ones who make it difficult. We're the ones who looks at things as "Too hard" or "too much" when in reality. God and Christ are there to make it too easy and too light. Yeah we have to maybe change some things and most of the time that's a very hard and scary thing. But once we're on their team, we see with renewed eyes what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. and it's one of the most joyful feelings in the world and when we just allow ourselves to take part in that and see what we can do in our life to be more like our Savior. We'll begin to see this day after day. I love this gospel. I love the joy it brings and the trials and challenges that come from being a disciple. It isn't easy. But it was never easy for him. And each time we're out we have him by our sides making it so much easier for us no matter what we're working on.
I hope you all have a great week and thank you for your love and prayers. I miss you all so much. I officially hit 21 months this week and it's a weird feeling. I don't feel this old but I am. And it's a weird/bittersweet sensation. Pray for the weather to not be so humid here in Ohio for me!! Imma need it!!
Elder Derrek Bowler.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

June 9, 2014

Hey everyone!
So pretty much we've already been in the area for almost a month and it's just crazy to me how fast time is going... It's just unreal... But I also still feel like I have forever left! What a weird feeling. So this last week was pretty busy. Good, but busy. I got up at 5:45 four times this week cause we had so many meetings in Columbus and had to be up there at the butt crack of dawn, and it's over an hour for us to get there. So Monday we had the Mission Leadership meeting and I've already talked about that. Thursday we had Zone Conference (Which was actually one of the best ones I've been to) and Saturday we had to go pick up our Mini-Missionary! So that's going on this week so it's pretty cool. Plus our mini has a mission call (To Frankfurt Germany) Already did a year at BYU and is older than E. Bullock by 13 days.. haha pretty funny. And he was Ward Mission Leader at BYU. So we got spoiled this time...Oh and then Sunday we just had Ward Council super early. So yeah. But on top of that we were still able to find 4 new gators and 3 of those are a family (still haven't talked to the wife yet but we talked to the Dad [Gevron] and his two daughters Brianna [10] and Ga'varrah [8]) They're also from Oklahoma! So speaking of that where is Mansford close to?.... I keep meeting people from OK and I just say my mom grew up there and then I have no clue where it's by. haha
So Just about some of the meetings since that was most of our week. Zone Conference was cool it was different cause President and Sister Nilsen are leaving by the end of the month. So a lot of it was Q&A and they both spoke on some pretty cool things. Sis. Nilsen talked about seeking out spiritual experiences and striving to have life be more of your spirit living in a mortal body rather than having more mortal and natural man stuff. So that was cool. I know it doesn't make sense to you all but it was just like how God wants to give us spiritual experiences and our knowledge becomes more clear and our understanding broadens when we have spiritual experiences. Anyway.. it was cool to see them in a different light and then they talked about the transition with the new mission President. It'll be kinda weird having a new President for such a short while but it'll be cool either way.
So Yeah. We just had a lot of cool little things like that. By the time Sunday rolled around I was so exhausted it was just unreal. haha Just felt like collapsing. I think our Mini is starting to get a feel for it too. After this transfer I will have spent 10 transfers on a bike and if I die here it'll be 12. Nuts... I'm just really grateful for the experience and the growth that's taken place. And tell Calvin and Ashton that the only reason Alec is saying that stuff is cause he's finally realized the things he shouldn't have done. And that everybody's time table is different and the Lord is aware of that. There is a high percentage of missionaries who go through that and take care of it when they're in the field because they can see how unable you are to teach with the spirit with such things. Back home you don't see it as much and it doesn't have the same affects. Alec called me a hypocrite all the time cause I was giving advice about what to do before the mish and I didn't do that stuff until he realized what I actually went through and how I only gave the advice because I didn't want him to have to struggle like I did. It's the same thing. Plus no matter what, that's why we have the Atonement. That's why Christ came down. If it wasn't for him. Every single effort any of us made to be better would make us a hypocrite in most critics eye's. Why? Because those critics don't understand the simple truth that EVERYONE can change and become better, ONLY because Christ paid that price and made that possible. It's only because of that power that I'm where I'm at now and it's something I'm eternally grateful for. So tell that to Calvin and Ashton and tell them that Alec, Me, and everybody else has our weaknesses and problems. And that the best thing for anyone to do is to recognize that and try and support and help. Because if we sit here and call everyone a hypocrite, or a liar, or whatever. Then it doesn't do anything good for anybody and just makes you feel justified for the way you're living. Calvin, Ashton. What I say is true and I don't care what you think. None of us are gonna make it through this life, unless you just try and do the best you can with your own life while trying to lift others around you instead of justify your own actions and point out every single flaw we all have. It's not worth it to do that and doesn't do anybody any good. It's because of Christ that people can be better. and Same for you two. I don't care what anybody says. I have seen people's lives, who are WAY worse than any of us combined, turn around because of this Gospel. Don't believe me? Then try it for yourself and see what it does. And do it the right way. I'm not being preachy. But I hate when people call each other hypocrites when others realize their own weaknesses and try to protect others from the harm and sadness that person felt. All of us can change. I love everyone of you so much. More than you'll ever know. and especially when it comes to family we all need to stick together. I hope you all have a great week! Love you!!

Elder Derrek Bowler. 
Elder Bowler and good friend, Elder Cornia

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

June 3, 2014

the Zone at the Air Force Museum

Elder Bowler & Peterson having fun
So this past week went by pretty quick! It felt like not a whole lot happened when in reality quite a bit did. We were pretty blessed this past week and were able to find a couple people to teach. So that's pretty exciting. This area will be picking up here pretty shorty! :)
We took over a couple of the Sisters investigators cause it wasn't too safe any more for them to be in that neighborhood and teaching the people there. (It's not even THAT bad... I've been in worse haha. It's just white trash and drunks who think they own the world and do stupid things to other people, NBD) But it's cool. Robert. He's pretty funny. He's one that we took over. He's a recovering alcoholic. (Went from 64 to 4 and had bad reactions to that so now he's doing a gradual step down starting from 5 a day.) But he's funny. We're gonna go over there today. We also were able to get in to that home where the kid (Julian) had the BMX bike and E. Bullock threw down tricks on. So that was cool. We're gonna drop by with a BoM today and we also found a bunch of potentials last week too! So pretty excited! :) 
So now I got that out of the way. I'll just touch on some Highlights. So this is actually a lowlight but Wednesday I went on exchanges into Fairborn with E. Paulsen.... Holy crap Fairborn must not have liked me cause I got the worst Allergy attack there. It was seriously so bad. I like couldn't breathe... and my eyes were killing me. It flared up that night too and killed the next morning. But luckily yesterday I got a Shot :) so we'll see. After that blow up though they haven't been too bad just cause we were able to manage to get rides or stay in doors and not be out in it too much. There's like a weird cotton tree that blossoms and of course I'm on a bike like last year during Allergy season.... God has a sense of humor haha It's all good. Seriously, I've racked in so many wife points on my mission I'm just getting really stoked to finally meet the dang girl cause of what I've gone through! Sheesh!! hahaha I think biking in -40 degree weather was enough but hey I'll take more points why not? :P But Thursday our AC got fixed and that has probably been the greatest thing that happened to us. We had out muggy apartment at 85 for like a week and that was miserable and then it was like Christmas Morning watching the thermostat drop all the way down to a Glorious 70 degress.. Total heaven! I actually got to use my bed sheets! Anyways. So we worked with our gators. Rode our bikes. The usual. Taught some members the lessons. And those have been going pretty good too. That family with 3 Girls (The Bentley's) we're fun to teach last night. Rosie who is 7 asked about her friend cause we taught the Plan of Salvation and She was like What about Gabbie? Will she make it to heaven too? and it was a cool little experience cause we told her that God knows and loves every one of us and is a part of our life and uses us to help our friends make it to heaven so they can be happy too! :) They're super cute haha. So that was cool.

We had Stake conference this past weekend. It was pretty good. Sunday we had it broadcasted and it was super glitchy... I didn't really get anything out of it.. But whatevs.. But yeah. We went to the Airforce Museum today as a Zone. That was pretty cool. This Zone isn't as close as my last one and no one seems to believe the whole unity in a Zone thing actually brings forth success but whatever. I'll still work on it. Yesterday was pretty cool though. All the leadership in the mission had a special meeting where we had Elder Perkins of the 70 come and speak to us and the CEO of Wendy's Emil Brolick (He's worked with President) So they came and talked about being a leader and some other coold things. So that was tight. There were a ton of my mission buddies there which I thought was cool. Everyone from Hilliard was there. Which is funny cause of the whole Fire thing... That was so long ago. It all just seems like a distant dream.
I also got an email from Joe Hamilton saying he just got his Endowments and is getting Sealed in the Temple tomorrow!! I'm bummed I can't be there but that just made me happy :) And Mike and everyone else is coming up on their Year mark. Actually Mike's is this Saturday. It's just so crazy it's all here and everything is coming to a close. I was a totally different person at the beginning and just so miserable and hating life as a missionary. And with all the random hard things Satan tried to throw at me to bring me down. I'm so grateful to have gone through all of this. I'm so grateful for the trial and blessing it's been to walk my Gethsemane alongside my Savior. I am excited for what still waits for me and what waits for me back home. Life is never easy. But with the Lord's help it can be the most amazing journey anyone could ever be on. I love this gospel. I'm still the same Derrek Bowler, but now I KNOW who I am and where I stand and who I put my trust in. I love you all. Thank you for those who stuck around and helped me through all of this. I'm so grateful for it!

Alec. Keep going strong. Keep doing what you're doing. You'll get to where you want to be. Just say to yourself. What can I do a little better today on? Who can I help smile or laugh or be happy? I'm so proud of you and who you're becoming. You are a great missionary. I can see the desire you have to be good. I want you to know that whatever guilt you hold you can let it go. Why? Because one of the reasons the Savior came was to rid us of Guilt. Guilt comes from Satan (Unless it's for sins then it's from God to help nudge us back to the right path) But Satan will try to destroy you by making you feel Guilty for things that take daily effort. Just pick yourself up. Tell yourself you're okay and that you have no need to worry. Cause your Savior is helping you along the way. So don't fret baby girl ;) It's like if you forget to brush your teeth one day. Does that mean you'll stop brushing your teeth forever? No.. You just try to do it the next day till it's a habit. Just cause we missed something doesn't mean we blew every other chance we'll ever have. The Atonement makes it possible that every SINGLE second we have is a change to change and do a little bit better. :) I love the quote "Success is a lot of small things done well, day after day, workout after workout, obedience after obedience, day after day." Just be true to yourself. Know that God loves you more than you'll ever know and you'll make it on top :) Just know there will always be something to try and drag you down. Never lose hope. "Trust in god and believe in Good things to come" Love ya bro.

Calvin. I'm so proud of you too. I'm proud that you're trying to find out who you are. Continue to seek things that will bring you true and lasting happiness. And be smart with the decisions you make. That have lasting affects. Life is hard and you're at the point where you're kinda forced to grow up. and yeah I know it sucks but just take the first step and you'll be amazed at how far it's going to take you. Seek advice and help from others to get their opinions on what you could do. But don't ever be afraid to live your life.. Never Hold Back. And let your talents and gifts be used to help people out. Always keep smiling and doing your very best. Whatever that may be. I challenge you to spend time by yourself and get to know who you truly are. Figure out where you see yourself in the future. Where you want to be. Maintaining a distant perspective helps you in the decisions you make today. Find out your relationship with God. I promise you that will have a huge impact and being true to your faith and your beliefs. Whatever they may be. Just always be true to it and it will bless your life forever. I love ya and can't wait to see you soon.
Ashton. Bro. You need to do a little better at not shying away every time I try and talk to you. haha you have no reason to worry about things. You should always remember how much I love you and how much I'm willing to help you in your life. I love your smile and your laugh. It lights up the place wherever you are. I challenge you to try and find things to get out of your comfort zone. Try to reach out to someone who might need you as a friend in their life. I challenge you to take every opportunity you have right now to learn as much as you can. To develop your talents and also to find out who you really are. The quicker you can get a self image of yourself (That's true and accurate I might add) the more you'll love life. The easier it will be to make good choices that will benefit your life instead of tear it down. You still have a while to make choices while under the safety of mom and dad's roof. Don't waste that time. It'll come by a lot quicker than you think. I love you and can't wait to finally sit down and talk with you!! I'm proud of you and the man you're becoming :)
Dallen. You are an amazing kid. A lot better than I was at your age. (Ha I was a total skate punk... ask mom!) You have an amazing work ethic that is hard to find now a days. You work harder than most of the Adults I've seen out here. Never lose that talent. Always try and improve yourself and reach out to those near you, You have a gift of true Christlike love. Never lose that. It's easy to let life get a hold of us and make us lose sight on the things that matter most. Learn as much as you can from all types of people and sources. Surround yourself with positive people who will promote your life and help you to be the best Dallen you can be :) You impress me and I'm very proud of you. Love ya!!
Mom and Dad. I love you both more than you'll ever know. Thank you for your love and sacrifices on my behalf to try and help me become the best I can be. Thank you for your constant support and help in my life in all aspects. I don't know where I would be with out either one of you and I'm forever grateful for the parents you have been to me. I can't wait to talk with you and embrace you guys again :)
Elder Derrek Bowler.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

May 27, 2014

Hey :)

So yeah Mike helped out. I will be needing some help shipping stuff home... Sorry. But yeah. I ditched the winter coat. It's trash and I'll never wear it so maybe another missionary out here will. And we have a Gabriel Brothers here so if you could help out get some short sleeve shirts. Doing it here will be way cheaper cause 40 dollar shirts are only like 10. It's like the stuff that had slight mishaps (like missing a button or doesn't fold right etc.) So it's super cool. Recently not much has happened here. Kinda the same old stuff. Lot of biking. It's getting really muggy and yeah that tornado thing was crazy! I've never seen the clouds to that before! We were on our bikes right before the rain came. But the clouds were swirling like crazy! It was cool. So since we've been here the A/C has been busted. And it stays about 10 degrees hotter and like 30% more humid in our apartment than it is outside.... Holy crap it's miserable cause we never stop sweating and never escape the heat! haha I've never missed the dry desert as bad as I do now! I would totally take 108 back home than 80 here. But it's pretty good. It's weird being on a bike again. I swear I put more weight on here cause I feel like I can just eat whatever I want..... -__-  It's ok though cause we work out more here.. My comp is sweet. We get along super well. He's really quiet and I can't read him sometimes but he has some sweet stuff up his sleeve! Like apparently he used to be sponsored for BMX and this potential investigator we found (he's 15) had one and E. Bullock throws down a flat 360 on it! I'm like "where the crap did that come from??!" So that was cool. It's a little slow here and little things seem to throw us off our groove but we're getting the hang of it. We did find someone last week. So hopefully something goes somewhere with that. He's looking for a church he can just go and sit and be "fed" cause he's always in the band at church doing something (he's pentacostal. He's also named Doug) but he's cool. So he knows he wants his new church to be Pentacostal without a shadow of a doubt. But we'll see. We showed him Mountains to Climb cause he's going through a bit of a tough time. But it'll be good. So yeah. Things are going pretty decent here. It's hard but ya just gotta keep trucking and doing the best you can with what you're given. I'm just hoping and praying that I'm doing what God needs me to do. There have been a couple times where I just don't feel like I'm doing anything for anyone here anymore. So it's sometimes just kinda like dragging around doing the same old same old. But hopefully things will change there! I really wanna finish my mission strong. Beavercreek is definitely going to be a time of growth where I step out of my comfort zone (That's the thing about a mission is you kinda signed over your choice to be comfortable or not cause God is always trying to help you grow out here and you don't have too much agency on who you're around and where you end up) But it's cool cause it's inspired. We're also teaching some of the members (Active and Less-Active) the lessons 
 to help strengthen. Is part of the Rolling 15 (where 15 names are inspired to pick out and invited to take the lessons and the promise is that the work will explode and families will become stronger) So we've done that with a couple families. Some worked out well. Others not too focuses. But the EQ President and his family are taking them cause their daughter is getting baptized soon and they have 3 cute little girls and they can be impatient of course. So I decided to try something new. Have everyone draw what they think was happening when I recited the First Vision. And being over 20 months out the spirit never fails to come when that experience is recounted. It was a cool experience cause it helped me strengthen my own testimony. Oh yeah! and totally witnessed some domestic violence haha first time I've ever seen someone choked out. Drugs man. It'll tear ya apart. So yeah now that I killed it all with that :P haha I love you all. That's it for this week!!

Elder Derrek Bowler

our apartment how we got it and then after the ward helped us. and me when I fell asleep after closing the plan we set haha.... Always soo tired.. and then the two of us :) I got more but I'll catch up later!