Sunday, July 26, 2015

Leaving Amite and heading to Deridder.....

July 6, 2015

Dear friends and family,

 Okay so this week we had a lot of people we are teaching, all in one family. They are super golden and we are super excited because the chances of them coming into the fold are great. It's nice to have people experience the atonement, ya know? That's really all I want, all I ever want. I know it feels good, I have felt it myself, so therefore I just want others to be able to feel the goodness I have felt.

  We had some investigators at church and less actives that are coming back and everything is going darn well in the work so that's all that matters right? I am glad to be an instrument in the Lord's hand that can actually play a nice tune once in a while.

4th of July was like the civil war, and it was great because it still continues, fireworks all the time. I wish I could send y'all a longer email, but in reality I want you to know that the Spirit really does heal peoples' hearts, and when you listen to people with a sincere heart they open up a conduit to the Spirit. I really love these people, they really will be some of the strongest members of the church one day.

love y'all
-Elder Joshua Dean Rush

July 19, 2015

Dear Friends and Family,

   I am....GETTIN Transferred. I am gonna be outta the ghetto's of the sweet Amite and probably roamin' the streets of another city's run down parts. Spreadin' the gospel the best way I know how. To tell y'all the real truth, this week has been a real slow, real hard kind of week. I always try extra hard the week before transfers and it never fails that everyone cancels. It's 102 degrees and this time around we got rained on in buckets while we tracted! At least I can hopefully say that I tried my best for this lovely place.

   Hopefully in the coming weeks the families we have been teaching and the young couples we have been finding will get baptized, that's the hope for this teeny branch. We need some new life in here, cause we aren't gettin' sisters back anytime soon so whoever replaces me has to work their absolute tails off for this part of the vineyard.

  I learned this week that sometimes we just try too darn hard in life, I was always told that you could never really work and stress too much, especially with the work, but I guess it just depends on the way you do it, because, man, it sure gets ya torn all the way down. I forgot where the fun was, forgot the joy and the heart that is supposed to be in life. Thankfully some sweet prayers to the heavens and a whisper in the heart in a moment of frustration and pain, and all is well. Ain't nothin' like a real good prayer in the dark heart pourin' for some mercy. Mercy is real, weakness is real and God sure is willinng to give the utmost measure of his love.

love -Elder Joshua Dean Rush 

p.s. I heard Kaden Hartman was in Monroe, Lousiana with the duck commanders? I am jealous but also holla to the LA!!!

Joshua's New address

409 Somerset Dr. 
Apt. J
DeRidder, LA 70634

Sunday, July 12, 2015

"Jesus is Lord over Amite"

July 6, 2015

Dear Friends and Family,
   One of the most important things felt and learned, in my young honest opinion, falls into one category. At the end of seemingly endless failure is utter success! No matter how many times we get knocked down, if we aren't dead, we can get back up! Nothing besides the very God of heaven and the (temporary) state of death can stop us. It sounds like I never knew this, like I may have just learned it, and that in reality it's been said so many times before. In relation, How many times do we read the scriptures or hear the prophets voices and not do them with full intent and the utmost love? It's better to have done and never said then to have said and never done. The promises that The Father promises will come to pass for all of us. There is no human that is ever destined to fail. God is more merciful than that, he put within us all the great ability to overcome and succeed, even the cunning serpent had his chance, I am sure of that. 
 We went to a wedding for Albany ward. holla
wanting some cake!
  The last month was hard, it's always hard! It's a mission all about salvation!! That is no easy task, it was an almost impossible task had God himself not come down to sacrifice all. We have 4 new and golden investigators. After searching day after day, biking in heat, praying over and over again. The Elect were found. Who knows if I will see them baptized or if they will ever be, but seeing them find progression and seeing the miracles that led to them, is worth it. One we met months ago, who now asks us what he can do for us rather than our begging and pleading him to try. We have a young boy who is full of light, his grandpa who is searching for the truth and the mercy of Gods true church. Finally we have 3 men who all are open to feel and to search and ponder, so that they might know for themselves.
remember the Landry's? well we had 4th of July dinner there!!!! 
Elder Mcmurry is a funny man 
me, blaylock and abercrombie ha

  The worst of all my humanly weaknesses is most likely in my self-pity, in my lack of confidence and faith. It's true that I am a man of such little faith, but I am not afraid to let you all know. It's hard to get motivated and focus all the time, to keep all things pure and sanctified in my mind. I barely seem to be any kind of servant to the Saviour, but nevertheless' all who work in the vineyard receive that which was promised. I know that going forward is the way of Life that the Saviour provided. That the way of this church and all that it entails is the way to the most sustainable and fullest joy we can obtain. Joseph Smith was the first to have the faith, I certainly don't want to be one of the last. A man came back to church after 6 years of inactivity, mercy has it's claim on all who repent, who return, and who love. Who cares what you've done or who you've been. Becoming is a long road filled with "what will this 'Now' make of me later"!
Write me or email me if you would like, I love you all :) very deeply.
--Elder Joshua Dean Rush

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Be a Good Example....First letter of Year 2!

June 29, 2015

Dear everyone,

Don't be mean, okay? Lets all be nice, too much meanness up in this world for us to be mistreatin' one another. I don't want to go further into this but man we gotta learn to love one another. This has been a really great and fabulously awesome week (like all that description? ITs greatttttt) I mean we got this guy who learned from the missionaries years ago who is Catholic, who meets with us and actually keeps commitments, so I mean that's pretty fantastic, plus he asks questions and feels the Spirit all the time and we can tell. He's married and he doesn't do drugs or smoke, so he's like a champ. Then this other man read most of the triple combo and asked questions and wants to keep meeting with us and asks us what WE want from him, which is like wait what? nice guy, great family, married with his own business.

The best part is all we did was just be nice to these guys and show good examples (us as in LDS people in general) and they respect us enough to listen to our message, it's nice to know someone way down the road was a good example, and that some missionaries did the right thing at the right time.
Over the Hump and into year 2!

Hey, if your worried about the end of times and all these "signs" lately read the D&C and The Book of Mormon because we don't have half of what they talk about happening just yet, so calm yourselves. Be ready, but just keep it chill, its going to be alright, we don't have to do anything crazy or drastic just yet.

Do good for everyone, literally everyone, otherwise we are like unto the publicans who only love our friends, what profit have we?

Love y'all and stuff, sorry for the casual, its been so crazy, and if you want to know more you can ask me personally (hint, hint ;-) I'd seriously love it if you have time to write me!). Keep your chins up and your big kid pants on ;-).

Love Elder Joshua Dean Rush

"I will go, I will do, the things the Lord commands...."

June 22, 2015

Dear Friends and Family,
  What makes it worth it? What makes us do what we do? It's not just the blessings we receive from God, those are an after effects of our Faith. Nephi uses the words faithfulness and diligence at least 5 or more times in the first few chapters of the first book. I have noticed this as I have started the Book of Mormon again. I guess that means that those two attributes matter a whole lot. That's what this week is about, I guess. These two things I've seen.
  I've been trying to be more faithful and follow more impressions and just all around be a stronger missionary this week, but sometimes I doubt, just like everyone does. I just don't see a lot of what you would probably consider "results", in my mission, so far anyhow. All the good things seem to happen after I leave, sometimes that makes me feel as if maybe I had got something rolling with the Lord, sometimes I feel like I was holding something back, sometimes I feel like I was weak, or maybe I really just laid groundwork and planted the dear seeds of God's sweet southern vineyard.
 So it was us and the Albany sisters at the Gardiners and Thompsons house the other day, celebrating Patrick's first birthday. It was too good to see all my friends from Albany ward and see how big the little guy has gotten, and it was pirate theme, and here are the sistas haha
(The Gardiners and Thompsons are from Josh's very first area almost a year ago!)

 mah homie sista A

  I think its that last one, it took a lot of praying and a lot of confidence in myself and God to come to that conclusion, but better to plant than to uproot. I also seem to go to some particularly interesting areas, out far away, country, usually branches (in case of my last 2 areas), that can crack the toughest of God's servants. I can't say I haven't had all kinds of pain and sufferings too, but my faith has really, truly grown. It's been a year, and I didn't think I would have to do such hard things a year ago, and still enjoy it and find positive goodness in everything. I tend to be so negative sometimes, but I just can't afford to do that, I owe it to my companion and this area to show the greatest of enthusiasm.

our frog buddy :)

   This week we have had a lot of miracles, more than I really could list. One is that both the investigators the sisters left for us are progressing and getting close to baptism, we had a full family lesson yesterday out in Greensburg and it was pretty special to see everyone get so quiet while Elder Staley, the Spirit, and I taught the Plan. The Spirit was whispering all that he could all throughout the week, he is such a nice friend to have, if you haven't made a conscious relationship to move from acquaintance to friend with the Holy Ghost, it feels wonderful, I promise!!
   It's been so hard, I won't lie, but that good old primary hymn really rings true, that when Nephi was tried, he merely replied "I will go and I will do!"
I sure love and appreciate y'all that email me, and even if you don't send letters or emails, It don't even matter. May God be with you.
-Elder Joshua Dean Rush