Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life. -3 Nephi 5:13

Monday, January 25, 2016

January 25, 2016 Small Miracles

Sounds like you guys are busy as always! It's good to be busy though, it makes time fly! I know that that's the case for me, I can't believe either that I've been out for five months, where does the time go? Do you like home care momma? That's good that you are getting more patients... I think? haha that sucks that A was sick! I hate throwing up so much, I don't know if you remember but we were at Eric's cabin (our old Idaho neighbor) and I had the flu and I ended up throwing up in some closet cause I couldn't find the door to the hallway! haha one of the worst days of my life! We get weekly emails that say how much you spend on your card, that's how I keep track of my money. I don't have a lot more for the rest of the month though since I kind of spoiled myself the first couple of weeks this month haha. I need to do a better job financing my money! We both do the dishes and we sometimes clean the bathroom when it needs to be clean. Sometimes I drive on exchanges but other than that not really. I haven't gotten my gloves yet, if you sent it to the office I probably won't be getting it till our next zone council or zone conference sadly. haha I'm glad you liked the horn story! I laughed so hard when you said to do that horn thing to that guy!! That was sooo funny! I totally want to do it, but I better not. We actually were tracting in that same neightborhood and we came across that same house unexpectedly and we decided to go and knock on the door again just for fun. I recorded the whole thing but the wife or somebody answered the door and was a lot more kind but was not interested. I was kind of sad it didn't happen again! Oh well, I was glad to play a part in Pete's baptism as well. He truly is an awesome guy, one of the funniest old people I've ever met as well! This week was kind of a slower week for lessons and meeting with people but we did have some small miracles happen! Some unexpected less actives showed up to church yesterday and we were happy to see them there! We set up some appointments with them! There is an excommunicated member who wants to come back and so we are going to teach her the lessons so that she can be baptized! We have a couple of former investigators that want us to come back as well! it's cool to see how people want to come back again after some time and to be able to teach them and have them feel the spirit! We had a cool experience the other day when we were getting gas. We received a referral from church headquarters, his name is Aaron. So we thought that was cool and we were planning on going over to his house, but then we received a call from him like five minutes later. He said that he was told to call us, and so we were confused on how he even got our number and who told him to call us. Any way, he said that he wanted to meet at church yesterday but didn't show up sadly. So we go over to his house after church and he answered the door and he was acting really suspicious. haha he said that now wasn't a good time and he was putting his finger over his lips to tell us to be quiet. So I just gave him the sign with my hand of give us a call later and he gave us the thumbs up. Felt like I was part of a drug deal! hahah so we were extrememly confused about this whole thing. He ended up texting us on his friends phone saying sorry about earlier. My dad doesn't really like Mormons so I didn't want him getting furious at you. He said that he had forgotten about church and said that he would come next week which is cool. We then told him that we can meet as well sometime during the week, and he said "wait you guys just work on sundays right?" haha so we told him that we work everyday for two years. Then we asked him why he was interested and he said that Mormons are the happiest people on earth and he wants to give it a try! SO SWEET!! He said that he would love to meet up and said that he would text us today and tell us when he could meet! So really cool experience! We also got a referell from the Welland elders. This particular lady moved to Stoney Creek from Welland a couple of months ago. And they forgot to give the info to us a lot earlier. So we gave her a call and she said," Where have you guys been? Let me figure out my schedule this week and then I will give you a call so we can meet up!" So blessings!!! We had a powerful lesson with Dan the other day about God. It's really cool to see his eyes opening up! He gets so interested in what we have to say, he definitely loves us and is astonished at we do! Cindy fell off the face of the earth, so not sure what happened there. :( We are seeing our new converts tonight and also our new returning member who has two kids that haven't been baptized! So we are going to try and get them baptized and them start coming out to church! Another cool experience that I had was when we were out contacting. I was prompted to go and talk to this person from india, and I was a bit hesitant cause every person I've ever talked to says that they are seek. hahah so I thought there was no point but I decided to do it anyway. I told her something that I really wasn't expecting! It was one of those moments that people talk about how the spirit takes over and its as if you are watching and listening to yourself talk but it's not really you, if that makes any since. I told her about the Book of Mormon and told her how it answers a lot of questions that a lot of people have like where do our spirits go after we die. And she got really interested, "And asked WHERE??" haha so we said we would love to come and teach you, and she said that we could come by this week! I've grown so much spiritually this week just from the small little miracles and experiences that I've had! The lord really is by our sides every step of the way! I love you guys so much, and I think about you everyday! I try not to think to much about the past and the great memories that we had because I get home sick really easily! So that just proves how much I care about you and love you. :) I hope everything is alright, and it sounds like it is from what I've been hearing, I pray for you guys everyday! Thanks for the emails they really do help! Thanks for keeping me updated as well! Thanks for everybody who sends me emails and letters as well!! I really do apprecitate it!
Forever and Always,
Elder Beddes, Coco, Colteyboy 

I thought this day would never come where I would be the one teaching kids in Primary about what missionaries do and having to take off my missionary coat so that the next future missionaries could experience somewhat what a missionary feels like. :) flashback to when I was in primary and the missionaries let me try on their clothes! :')  

Random Picture

 Me, Elder Vargus, and Pete

 Niagara Falls does a fireworks show every Friday, so it was cool to see that! Really pretty!

Elder Brand

Monday, January 18, 2016

January 18, 2016 My New Companion

Elder Brand is a sweet missionary! He works way hard, and we are talking to everybody! He's honestly such a sweet companion! He'll like do random nice things for me like make my bed, clean my desk, just stuff like that. He's 6'5" and likes to play basketball! He's a very smart guy as well   He went to BYUI for a semester before he left for his mission so I've been getting some details about it! Sounds like it's a pretty sweet school though everything that I've dreamed of! Speaking of which, do you know when the fall semester starts? He told me in August but he wasn't quite sure. Anyway, we like to wave at every passing car, knock on windows of cars that have people in them and talk to them about the gospel, follow people on the sidewalks and talk to them about the gospel haha that one is my favorite, when they don't want anything to do with you but you talk to them anyway). he's 21 as well. everybody is telling me that I'm a really young missionary, and it's kind of true I do feel like I'm way young! haha well this week we have found atleast 6 or 7 potential investigators that said that they would be willing to listen to what we have to say! so I'm excited for that. one of the coolest experiences that I've had so far was when we had to go to the church to go find something. and it takes about thirty minutes to get there, and we saw this guy on a bike right next to it. and so we started talking to him about the church and the gospel being restored and he was way interested. he said that he would go to church the next day and we even called him the morning of and he said he was on his way but he never showed up which was weird. so hopefully we see him again, it was snowing really hard sunday morning and he rides his bike everywhere so we are hoping that was the reason. we have been talking to a TON OF PEOPLE tracting and contacting. I wish I could tell you about each potential investigator but it would take forever, but just know that the Lord is guiding us to those who are prepared, and we are planting a ton of seeds. :) the other day it was almost time to go to the apartment to end the day, so we decided to knock on one last door. And this particular house was very big... so a very rich family. And we were on the mountain so we had a really good view of stoney creek at night. we knock on this guys door and we stand there for a minute or so and we know this guy is in there cause we can see some shadow and hear someone in there walking. and so we knock again and we turn around to look at the wonderful view and all of sudden this really loud horn goes off, so loud that I'm pretty sure all of stoney creek heard it. So I freaked out and fell down ( I don't know if you guys remember this about me or not but when I'm really scared my legs turn off and I just drop)and I was confused out of my mind as to why this guy turned on this horn. This guy ends up answering the door and it's this older guy who speaks Russian or something, he has a thick accent and we were like "Why the devil is your alarm going off?" haha and he looked so scared and we told him we teach about jesus Christ and he said no and slammed the door. So I don't know if he even understood us or not but as we were walking down his huge doorsteps the alarm goes off again and we looked back and the same guy was looking through the blinds at us! hahah so I don't know what that was all about but I love experiences like that! haha this area is being picked up though, I can feel it!! We are working harder than ever and I'm exhausted each night. This is the hardest thing I've ever done in my life, but it feels good. :) I honestly love it! Pete got baptized by the way! I'll send the picture! it feels good to know that I helped a guy get baptized. I loved the lessons that we taught to him. All three of them were so spiritual. He had a concern about The Word of Wisdom one of the lessons we were there, and he was thinking about dropping us actually. So the spirit told me to bear testimony of The Word of Wisdom and I started tearing up cause I could tell it was a very big concern for him because he was having a hard time with it. The spirit was so strong, and he said that he will continue to keep it and be baptized. I was reading my patriartical blessing a couple of nights ago and a part of it said that my testimony will bring many souls to him. So it was really cool to see how that came true. The Gospel is True!!! What need I say more? haha we had a good turn out at church as well! We had all of our New Converts come to church and we had 8 of our less actives come as well!! It's so sweet to see the progess of those less actives and there desire to go back to church and to become better! I love you guys dearly! I think about you everyday and hope everything is alright! :) good job with everything guys, keep moving forward with a steadfastness in Christ!!! With a pefect brightness of hope! Everybody needs a little bit more hope in the world!
Forever and Always,
Elder Beddes, Coco, Colteyboy

Pete and my companion Elder V at his baptism!! I'm so proud of this guy!

preparing for pete's baptism!!!

Decided to go to a Thai Restaurant! The workers there say hi dad! Told them all about you! It was good mussimon! ;)

I love this Mexican guy haha

tracting with the boys

me and Buddha

Niagara at Night

This is how you are supposed to dress up when you go tracting. ;)

My home boy Elder B

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

January 13, 2016 Keep Giving it My All (Handwritten)

I miss you all so much! Sorry I haven't written in a long time, it's been really busy here in Stoney Creek! My goal is to inform you guys about the little things that I haven't yet told you guys. There's been a lot obviously because there's' a lot that happens on a mission! I guess I should start with how I've been doing. I've been doing pretty good! The whole Laura and Manny thing was kind of heartbreaking but I've moved on. With them out of the lop though our teaching pool is definitely not at its finest! We dropped 3 of the investigators out of the 6 I came into the area with. We call them Eternal Investigators (I don't know if you guys called them that or not Dad on your mission). Basically missionaries have been teaching these guys for a long time. I really don't know why they kept them. I assume for the numbers though. We have Jenka who is from Czechoslovakis and is married to a less active. He was baptized when he was eight and never really went back to church. Oops I said, married, they are actually not married. So we are trying to teach them and get her baptized! She actually at one point was close but she came across the endowment video online so it spooked her out. Kim is another investigator who has been investigating for a year and 2 month. She really wants to be baptized really bad but she is waiting for the government to approve their divorce papers, and so it's been a long process(it's been about a year and they haven't received it).So it's been a waiting game with her, she'd going to get baptized as soon as she gets them. I talked about Pat a little bit in my emails home, she was the one who started crying when she was saying the prayer after the Restoration lesson we had with her at Tim M. We haven't been able to meet with her since. She kind of just disappeared. Just like all of our other investigators we found this transfer!  It kind of sucks but other people have their own agency. We teach such short powerful lessons so I would have thought people would want to learn more! So we've been teaching and contacting a ton in this area just trying to build up the teaching pool! The only new converts we have are the S's. They got baptized 4 months ago and then moved over her 2 months ago! They've  been doing pretty good, we've been trying to get them out to church a lot more then they have been. Our returning members are Brother G and Sean S. Brother G is an older guy probably 65 ish and he comes to church every Sunday but doesn't take the sacrament and Bishop says that he's been having some problems so that's why he hasn't been taking it. He hasn't received his endowment and I will tell you how we know that haha. We went  over to his house to teach him a lesson. He opens his door and he's shirtless with suspenders and he's probably 200 lbs overweight so it wasn't pleasant at all. So that kind of freaked us out a little bit. He was expecting us over too…. so it was definitely one of the more weird lessons I've been too! Sean S has an addiction with cigarettes. He smokes a pack a day which is nasty and is drinking coffee. He knows that its wrong and he feels guilty every time he does it. He just can't stop and he's tried in the past many times. So we've been trying to work with him and trying to help him out and teach him addiction recovery stuff. So there's the whole teaching pool right there! We've been trying to meet with the 70% of the Ward who are inactive or less active but we've been getting a lot of no's and doors shut in our faces haha! This is for sure the hardest area I've been in so far but I've been learning so much. I truly have. I think about how much disappointment and heartache the Savior had/has to go through trying to get people to do good and it warms my heart and has given me such a stronger love and respect for Him. Yeah sometimes life sucks and can seem like a drag and we all come across disappointment and sorrow sometimes in our lives, but it's nice to know that the Savior of the World had to go through something beyond my own comprehension and can relate to anyone in this world. The last thing he wants us to do is to get down on ourselves and quit! So, I'm going to keep giving it my all despite the dips in the road. I'm so glad that I have you guys as parents who have taught me that there are going to be hard times in my life and have shown me how to react and to proceed in life with my head held up high, so can you! Elder D is doing good. We butt heads sometimes but it's to be expected. He's one of the more trunky missionaries I've been around. He talks a lot about girls and music a lot. He talks about how much time he has left on his mission all of the time and what he'll be doing when he goes back, haha but he still works hard. It definitely feels like I'm the senior companion!  lol but that’s alright. It's starting to get cold up here! It's been about 2 degrees on average this past week. It's supposed to be -13 Monday so I'm excited for that! We have a huge district. I think 7 companionships are in it. I wasn't ever supposed to be in this one apparently because I was going to be in Sister C's district and somehow the AP's new about the whole situation so they put us in the other district! Most of it came from Sister C. I feel like she's been telling a lot of people, but oh well. Anyway, I hope I was able to fill you in on a couple of things! I love the gospel! I love being a missionary here in Canada! I know the gospel is true and I love declaring it to people, it brings me happiness! I know the Savior loves me and loves you guys so much! I miss you and love you guys so much! I think about you every day and I hope everything is going alright back at home! I pray for you guys every day and will continue to do so. PS- thought you guys would like to see some of my talks from when I was a kid! So many memories!
Forever and Always,
Colten, Elder Beddes, Coco, Colteyboy

Brooke- I hope everything is going alright! Hope your grades are up and are enjoying high school. Do you ride the bus or get a ride from someone? I hear you're doing good in basketball! Glad Farnsworth isn't making you do a lot of ladders. I remember him making us run around  the baseball field as fast as we could, they were called triangles. It's weird that you are going to be a senior when I get back from my mission, my sisters grow so fast! Anyway, short but sweet, just know that I love you very much and I'm proud of you!

Amber- I hear you  are doing good in sports! Keep up the good work! I had a dream last night. I was teaching a lesson to some random family, and I looked down and I noticed that I was only in my underwear! It was terrible. I've been having a lot of dreams of me being a missionary. Elder D told me 2 or 3 weeks ago I was talking in my sleep and I was talking about church and ' awesome and fun it is". Haha anyway I love you so much!

Maleah- How are you today? I drew you a picture of my favorite movie! How is school? I hear you're doing good in sports, keep up the good work! Have you watched Ponyo or Fox and the Hound lately? What about our favorite movie to watch, All Dogs go to Heaven? Those are such good movies. I hope you are getting along with Spencer! I love the pictures and emails you send me! Thanks so much for being my best friend. I sure do  miss you. We are going to play so much and watch a ton of movies when I back, K?

Love you Coco

Monday, January 11, 2016

January 11, 2016 I Have Felt a Snippet...

Hey Guys!
haha I don't miss Harmons at all! Good ole Colton still working there. Is Big John still there? If you see him, tell him to email me. Thanks for the Gloves I really appreciate it! Should I wear the Italian shoes? How expensive are they? I can't believe you saw Elder Bednar that's so cool!! Did you talk to him at all? A wave? Way to go momma with basketball, you are such a good basketball player, and I mean it!! Well this week has gone by too fast! It was a fun week especially with Elder Vargus coming into the companionship! Elder Vargus is from Mexico City and he is a convert to the church. He got baptized about four years ago and he is a English speaking missionary. He honestly the funniest person I know!! He totally reminds me of Nacho Libre and you know how much I adore Nacho haha!! His Mexican accent just makes everything he says ten times better!! The time I spent with him made my whole transfer a lot better, I haven't laughed this hard and this much for a long time so I'm very grateful for him. He's been out for about 10 months and is a great missionary. He is serving in St. Davids (Niagra Falls). He just got called to District Leader. Oh yeah we got transfer calls yesterday!!! Drum roll please............ I'm staying in Stoney Creek. Elder Ditty is leaving and going to Chadum and I'm getting a new companion. His name is Elder Brand. I know absolutely nothing about him haha so I guess we'll see how it goes! Seems like yesterday I was just explaining Elder Ditty to you, time flies! Well since Elder Vargus was with us, we were running both Stoney Creek and St. Davids!! So we were using a ton of k's driving back and forth!! It was fun though. We were able to teach Pete three times. I don't know if I've explained him to you guys yet but he is about 70 or so and he was getting baptized this last Saturday but when the zl's came to his house to do the baptismal interview he was drinking iced tea!!!!!! ahhhhhhhh so frustrating, it was an honest mistake though. He had just forgotten and he said wasn't thinking so we have to push the baptism this Saturday!! He's a stud though and I love him. He's so funny and sarcastic! He is such a strong fighter!! He had the biggest addiction to smoking but he has been enduring to the end and hasn't smoked for about 2 weeks! We have such powerful lessons with him, and the spirit was so very strong when we were teaching him! I don't know if I'll be able to make it to the baptism or not but I'm so very grateful to be able to teach him and to see him progress towards baptism!! Not much success with Cindy. She was sick all week apparently so we weren't able to meet with her. We were able to talk with Dan!! We taught him the Restoration and he really enjoyed it! We weren't able to meet with him since but we are going to be teaching him the POS in a couple of days. It really is a blessing to see people get interested in what we are teaching cause it really is the spirit that does all of the work! To see the Spirit touch their hearts is one my favorite things as a missionary to experience! We found two new returning members this week who wanted us to come and share a message with them! I love it when people who haven't gone to church for a very long time start to realize that they are missing something very big in their lives and want to start meeting with the missionaries and start going to church! I love being a missionary!!!!!! I can't wait for this upcoming transfer!! It was a slower week but it's more motivation to find more people this week. I've learned so much this last week! I was able to talk to a lot of people this past week tracting and contacting and though we were rejected it taught me a lot of what the Savior went through. I love to talk about the Atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ because it truly is the most important thing that happened. Christ was rejected so much and words can't describe how much pain he must of felt. My testimony has grown so much of the Atonement and of Jesus Christ as I have felt a snippet, a little bit of what Christ had to go through, as people reject the messages that we share to people. It saddens me. I can't tell you how much care I have for these people and how much I know that the gospel truly can bless their lives. I'm so very grateful to be born into the Gospel and to have goodly parents who have taught me so much. :) I sounded like Nephi right there haha! I love you guys dearly and hope you have a good week! 
Forever and Always,
Elder beddes  

Monday, January 4, 2016

January 4, 2016 -13 Degrees and Loven it!

ahhh I feel so bad for Grandma! Tell her sorry it's my fault! lol how did you like the Canadian food? haha I actually like the ketchup chips and the Cadbury chocolate is my paradise here! Looks like you guys had fun in the snow! I loved that hill we used to go to! I remember running over momma and giving her whiplash. The stupid things I did that I didn't think beforehand about lol. That whole L thing gave me the chills. I don't want to think about marriage right now at all!! It's weird to think that that is the next step... ugh. well this last week has been a ton better. the laura and manny thing was disappointing but I didn't let it settle with me. We had a great lesson with Cindy that new investigator that you were wanting to know about. We taught simply and powerfully and she loved it. She said that she will pray to know if the things we talked about were true! She's an amazing lady and wants to know the truth. We are going to meet with her this week sometime since she is coming back to her house in Stoney Creek. She said she wants to be baptized and wants to continue on this path which is sweet!!! Her son isn't talking to her, but hopefully he'll start talking to her since she has been meeting with the missionaries. It's a weird way to get her to talk with the missionaries.... but I guess he gets  it done. lol I went on exchanges with Elder Lao the other day, he's from hong kong. His story is really cool. He met missionaries about 3 years ago and got baptized in hong kong. He was a member for about a year before he came out on a mission. He's been a missionary longer than he's been a member of the church. He didn't know English very well at all when he came to the mtc. He is an inspiration to me and to all of the missionaries in this mission. he's soo spiritually strong and is such an example!! we went tracting all day and placed some book of Mormons and got a couple of potentials but no one let us in. But that's alright, I love planting seeds!! We met with Dan our new investigator that we found and had a wonderful lesson about the restoration! He is starting from ground zero. He doesn't know if there is a God, what a prophet is, never prayed in his life, and so he wants to know and he loved the lesson! he's in old trucker guy that has a big heart! He's going to go to church with us next week and is going to pray to know if there is a god! He's such a nice guy!! We have been doing a ton of tracting and contacting  lately, I'm enjoying the cold actually. I think people will be more willing to let us in if it's negative something out there. ;) For New Years Eve we went to a members house to have dinner it was really good. But we had to go back to the apartment at 7 to weekly plan. I woke up at 12 with the fireworks going off! New Years Day, it was a ghost town here in Stoney Creek. Everybody was sleeping in and hung over! lol so we tracted for a little while then we went to Bishops house and played some games over there and had dinner! :) do you keep in touch with Sister Hobbs momma? Just wondering. Well that's been the highlight of the week. Oh yeah.. we are going to be in a tripan this week with Elder Vargus who is a chubby Mexican and is hilarious haha is coming into the companionship! His Elder is going home early so we will be running both Stoney Creek and St. Davids this week, so it'll be fun!! :) Apparently there might be someone who could potentially get baptized this week in St. Davids. So we will be meeting with him and teaching him a couple of lessons before Sunday. He has to stop smoking and then I think he is set. That's all I heard though. So it'll be pretty cool if we taught him and baptized him! lo I love you guys so much! I miss you and hope everything back at home is going good!
Forever and Always,
Colten, Coco, Elder Beddes, Colteyboy  

*** Colten asked his Dad for advice and I wanted to post his response:

Here are my thoughts:  I didn't have the opportunity to reactivate anyone on my mission like you have.   I think the Lord rewards us for everything we do on our mission to bring souls back to him and that includes reactivation work and temple work.  

My first four baptisms were not mine they were the hard work of my senior companion.  Then I went probably four months or so without another baptism.  The lord then rewarded my companion and I for keeping all the rules and working our butts off and having faith.  I know really good people that did the above and did not have a baptism all mission or only 1.  

You have already helped many people and like we talked about last week you will probably never know the fruits of your labors until you reach heaven and receive your reward.  Missionaries get frustrated and throw their hands in the air and say it's not worth keeping all these rules and working hard like this.  It's so much more fun to just have fun.  Don't be like them.  Even if you don't baptize a soul you have already made large positive effects in many people life.  If the son of the Bishop goes on a mission because of you, you will have served a beneficial mission.  

Think along the lines of planting seeds and just helping as many people as you can.  I really think you will baptize some people but don't have mind set of I am not a successful missionary unless I baptize.  You will be miserable.  Count your successes the way the Lord does, one good deed at a time!

Love you Coltey Boy!  Choose to be happy, people will wonder why you are that way and want what you have, which is the gospel.  If you are bummed no one will want what you are selling!  


Exchanges with Elder Lao from Hong Kong

Cold day here in Canada. -13 to be exact