Monday, April 27, 2015

April 27th 2015
Give us this Mountain!
What in the world, it is almost May! There has been plenty of showers, so we find it reasonable to say that there should be May Flowers! Georgia comes to life in the Spring! It feels like I am in a forest/jungle, or that I am camping. But this is a frillion times better than any camping trip I have been on! This is eternal life! The work of the Lord! This week was long and trying, but it was well worth it! I am praying and hoping everyone’s week went as well as ours! 
The biggest miracle came by way of Elder Shepherd Teaching the Law of Chastity to our investigator family. With Bro. Buck on hand, he was able to set a date for baptism, but prior to that, a date for marriage. Namely, this Sunday at 6:00 Pm. The Ward is rallying around them with the crunch time preparation, but it is truly incredible to see everyone so lovingly helping this young family that wants a change. Dresses, cakes, decorations, etc. everyone is chipping in! Eric and Monica are wonderful people! They came to church for the first time and met with the Bishop. They got their marriage license in one day. Their young child’s future will forever be changed! This is the work of the Lord, undoubtedly! 
We were able to confer the Aaronic priesthood to our Recent Convert, David! It was a really powerful experience! He lit up completely! Bishop Nolden dropped by with a shirt and tie for him, then invited his Mom. She came and had a wonderful experience! In addition to this, we had 7 total investigators at church with us! It was a busy day, but it was so much fun!
I was on exchange out in Centerville, and I had something that I thought I wouldn’t have until returning to Utah. J-Dawgs Sauce. That is a miracle right there! But on top of that, Elder Zimmerman and I taught some incredible lessons! We found two people that accepted to be baptized and had an intense lesson with a man named Bishop. He told us that he already knew the Book of Mormon was true! He asked what was next. Well Baptism of course! Also, after a long day of finding, it seemed the only thing we found were doors without people behind them. We were led to a door and out came a younger woman that, upon finding out, hadn’t been baptized! Of course it was the last door! There are miracles all around us if we will but have faith to see them! 
The Conyers Zone is incredible! We had 5 baptisms and taught 214 Member Present Lessons. Our goal was 225! Being a missionary is where it is at!
My companions are incredible! We get along so well! This has been some of the funnest time as we are all united in purpose with the work! Elder Shepherd is a hoot and Elder Anderson too!
We are going to have to call a time out at this point! Thanks for the letter and prayers! Thanks for all that you do behind the scenes! I love you all so much! You mean the world to me! Fight the good fight! Have a blessed up week! I will hear from y’all right quick!

Elder Dallan Barnes 
“We’re kickin’ A….dversary!” President Harding
“Happiness is the foundation of a great smile.” 

Monday, April 20, 2015

April 20th
Miracles have not Ceased!
Wow. It is about all I can say about the inumerous blessings that the Lord has bestowed upon us. It poured blessings all week! Probably even more than the consistent daily Georgia thunderstorms we have enjoyed (thank Heaven for the car). I don’t think we will ever truly understand how great of blessings we do receive! All I can express is my gratitude and even that I feel is not sufficient. God is good! Georgia is good too, in case you were wondering! Let’s tackle it!
I had the most delightful Southern meal this past week! We were over at the Pierce’s and by golly it was the best fried chicken that I have had! I love Southern people! Their home felt like Cracker Barrell! There are wonderful people out here, I kid you not! 
Elder Shepherd and I had the privilege of speaking with a lady who, for lack of better words, was not a fan of the church. In fact, she studied apologetics against our church for 11 Years. All we could do was testify and see our testimonies be tested! Here’s what I do know, that smiling and soft answers diffuse situations, and that the Gospel is true, or why would people go to such lengths to disprove it? 
The other day we were trying to go see a member family, their first names were Stella and Wale. I jokingly said, “We are looking for Kelly and Wale, right?” I then said we will find a lady named Kelly in this neighorhood. This family wasn’t home, the neighbor yelled at us to get of his driveway, and many doors were not opened, including the last one. Disappointed, but not discouraged, we scampered to the car, and the person who lived at this last home pulled in. We, relishing in the awkwardness, spoke with her, testified, and got a return appointment. Upon further asking, “What’s your name?” She responded, “Kelly.” God works in mysterious ways! 
We prayed this week to find a family of three. Little do we know, as we got confused with an address, by knocking on the wrong door, a lady named Monica came out. She hasn’t been going to a church and was wanting to be baptized with her two kids. The Lord works according to our faith! Ask and it will be give us! She, with Heaven’s help and the Spirit to teach, will be baptized on the 16th of May with her children! 
Our miracle this week came by way of an HQ referral! It was a lady named Beverly, who requested a bible. We contacted her within 24 hours, set the appointment, and ran by Friday Morning. She is devoted to her church and a firm believer in Jesus Christ, she feels that she is a prophet and seer. As we talked with her, we quickly found out she was after a Book of Mormon. She is thirsty for as much teaching as she can get about the Lord Jesus Christ! She was distraught why the whole Christian World is divided and why revelation has ceased. We took the time to sing “I am a Child of God” to her. The spirit was so strong as we testified that this is the true church. She then told us that just that morning, the Lord told her to, “Look for something extraordinary today.” To which she told us about our message, “This is extraordinary!” We invited her to be baptized and committed her to attend to church in the coming weeks. She will be quite the Relief Society President!! 
The greatest joy that we had this week was in the success of the missionaries! As a Zone Family, we rose from 29 Investigators with a baptismal date to 68! Elder Anderson felt inspired to put together a last minute Zone Call on Thursday to rally the troops! From there, we blasted out every person who committed to a specific date with as much enthusiasm and creativity we could muster! We are praying to baptize 88 people, one per companionship this transfer! 
That is a wrap, as usual. I am too far from Atlanta to develop my abilities to actually make my letters home a rap. Thanks for all that you do for me! Thanks for the letters and for the love! I truly wish the best for everyone this week with finals and everything! Have a blessed up week! Fight the good fight! Finish the course! Love you all so much!
Elder Dallan Barnes

He is Extraordinary.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Alpine Creekside Ward Brothers.....Elder Barnes and Elder Shepherd!!!

Re: Spring Break Houston s

April 13th

There’s no day, like Today!

What an incredible day to still be above the ground! I have heard though, that Georgia Clay is good for the pores, you may have to check me on that. Regardless, it is an immense privilege and treat to see a full inbox of emails! It warms my heart! The gospel is true, in case you were wondering! I have some pretty stellar news to run at you, so without further adieu here’s the week in a nutshell!                          
So, I am not sure how much got out and about, tossed and whirled around, but I have been officially relocated to Conyers, Georgia. The place that I have always referred to as, “The Dirty Con.” It is such a wonderful corner of the world! The Church is smaller, the smallest ward I have served in, but the Church Members are strong. I know this is the place for me, it simply feels right! The earth shattering news, that  you probably felt the tremors on the mission facebook page, is that I am serving with Elder Anderson (who reminds me so much of Greg Lindeman) and also Elder Shepherd! Mom, you totally called it that I would be training him! What an opportunity! It has been some of the most fun I have had since I have been serving, quite possibly the most fun I have had ever! My companions are incredible!
The weather is heating up! It got into the 80’s, too hot. Also, my clothing is finally starting to wither away. I have ripped my pants and broken some buttons, even had the hemming come out on my high quality Ross Special Pants. I am not putting on weight though, Dad, I know that matters to you, because I can still take you!
One quick miracle, as we were engaged in a service project put together by the Ward to clean up downtown Conyers, we were picking up trash for a few hours. We spoke with many people along the way, but there was one that we had to speak with. His name was Ruben. Come to find out, he graduated from Jackson State University in Mississippi, played football there, served in the National Guard, and just moved here a week ago with his brother and was searching for a church. We taught and testified that God’s greatest gifts were now available. Right then and there we invited him to be baptized and he accepted the date of May 9th. We are ecstatic to follow up and teach him how he can be happy for forever! Many are placed in our paths, it is up to us to have the courage to trust the Lord and reach out to others as he would!
Many miracles are happening these days! I don’t know all of the people we are teaching, but there are many that are on the verge of the font! One crazy miracle was that I saw Jared Laufiso, from UVU Rugby! He is married! It was such a miracle that we crossed paths. Of all the places to see him, Conyers Georgia! He is going to put a picture on the UVU Rugby Facebook Page!
That is a wrap! Thanks again for all that y’all do for me! Love you so very much! Fight the good fight! Have a blessed up week! Love you all so much! 
Elder Dallan Barnes
He Lives!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

April 6
Happy Easter!
Isn't it incredible to glory and rejoice in Christ’s victory over everything we experience?! It was a fantastic weekend for us out here in the grand land of Cartersville! It’s the place to be… Said no one ever. Except the Lord, He told me that this was the place for me these past three months. Heck He even told Elder Terhufen that too! Spring is fully in swing, the pollen is collecting on the cars (and suit coats when we mistakenly lean against the car). I hope all y’all had a wonderful Easter Weekend and that Spring break is being enjoyed to the fullest measure! Let me run you through the ropes from our experience out here! 

The most pressing news on the block, Christ Lives! But also, we got the transfer news this morning. I will be leaving the wonderful Cassville Ward. It is so bittersweet! I am really good at sowing apparently, I am just not a reaper, and neither am I grim. All I know is that I will be transferring and completing the 2nd Half Training (second transfer) Training of a new missionary. So stay tuned! I know that I was supposed to serve here! I have seen all too many miracles and made many friends! God is at the helm of this work and the Helm of our lives, if we will allow Him to!  

General Conference was Dynamite! I hope everyone got what they needed from the voices of the Prophets and Apostles, also the Spirit too! It was my last one as a missionary. General Conference is truly a spiritual feast, a buffet even, free of charge and you can never overeat! That is the kind of value that I yearn for! By the end of all the sessions, I felt in a small measure what the Nephites must have felt when the Savior taught and instructed them. There is so much that I have to work on and change! Thankfully, we all have the Savior’s help in becoming like Him, as we live and cherish the principles and ordinances of perfection; His Gospel. His victory over everything negative empowers me to overcome my challenges. His grace is sufficient for all men, and His strength is made perfect in weakness! Our salvation is not purchased, not one jot nor tittle, with our obedience! We are to obey out of love, to give Him all that we are, have, and desire! Heaven’s gates have been unlocked and are open by Christ’s infinite and eternal Atonement! The Windows of Heaven are open! We can receive every good thing through the gift and power of the Holy Ghost! The bar has been raised; mediocrity is not something to be found in the Lord’s church. Average is the enemy of excellence! This is the line that encapsulates what I have taken away from General Conference! I cannot settle I cannot turn back; I cannot even yearn to go back, I cannot nor will not sell myself short of my divine potential. The Gospel is to change us from good to better, better to best, not so we can return to subpar expectations, but so we can become even as our Father in Heaven is; Perfect. This applies to me now as I fulfill my calling as a missionary. This applies to me in the future as a father. This applies well into the eternities! I am so grateful for High Expectations! Every Day, All Day we need to uphold and strive to reach the Lord’s standards! He has given us every opportunity to do such and the means, by which it is possible, namely, His Only Begotten Son!

Todd is moving along super well! We have taught almost all the commandments and he will be baptized on the 18th of April! It seems to me that I connect really well with funny people and he has quite the sense of humor! As we were discussing the Word of Wisdom he was threatening to lure us in to riotous living, even though he had no such contraband!              
We went through some major downs and ups with the Suttons. They were on the very ledge of getting a divorce. We prayed so hard and we got the ward and the District to pray with us for a miracle. It suffices me to say that we pulled down the powers of Heaven. Divorce got aborted and they were going on date night for the first time in a while. Brandi told us that she wasn’t able to find the Family Proclamation pamphlet we gave her so she went online, printed it, and read it at the conclusion of the date night! Miracles do happen!! 
Rosie is currently doing well! She keeps absorbing what we have to teach! She is praying for a baptism on the 25th of April! Her health needs to clear up some. We have plans to teach her about priesthood blessings, then giving her one!

Well that is a wrap! God is good! Thanks for the email and the love! I really and truly am the greatest benefactor of loving family and friends! I wish everyone the best and safe travels this week and weekend! I love you all so very much! Have an amazing week! Fight the good fight, have a blessed up one! Hear from y’all next Tuesday, let’s make it a date!

Elder Dallan Barnes

Daily Discipleship Determines Eternal Destiny!