Elder Davis B Cox

Elder Davis B Cox

Monday, August 31, 2015

Monday August 31, 2015 - Mark Twain Town

My Trainer Elder Lords, me, and my boy Elder Baxter.

The food pantry ladies gave us a case of like 100 bags of my favorite dorritos, so I had to have Elder Baxter dump them on top of me and do snow angels in them

Hola, So this week has been awesome because we have  had so many cool little tender mercies right at the time that Heavenly Father knew we needed them.
Usually after the we help at the food pantry on Tuesdays, we have dinner at the Voelkels (the coolest family every) but their dad wasn't home so we decided to just do some tracting while we were out in Palmyra. Just as it was getting dark and we are headed back to the car we saw 2 ladies (Blanca and Marta) carrying little kids so we walked across the street and started talking to them. They wanted to hear a lesson right there right then so we taught them the Restoration on the sidewalk. Marta, the older one, didn't speak English only Spanish so we had to take breaks every couple minutes for her daughter, Blanca, to translate. 
They were so excited to hear about it and excited to work towards baptism it was awesome!
By the time we finished it was really dark but we told them before they left we were going to run back to the car right around the corner and get a Spanish Restoration pamphlet. Turns out the car was around the corner, down the street, and around another corner so me and Elder Baxter sprinted in our suits to the car and felt like we were FBI chasing after someone, dodging dogs and jumping potholes as we ran through the trailer park.
Thursday we went on exchanges up in Quincy. It was super cool we did a lot of proselyting on or around the Quincy University campus so I got to talk to people my own age and got to go into the massive QU cathedral chapel. There is a lot of history there especially all the history that Quincy has with the underground railroad.
Last little tender mercy that happened just an hour ago: So we went and did laundry and everything this morning and came back to the apartment and realized we forgot the keys inside the apartment. But no worries we keep an extra key! Checked there and it wasn't there. We looked all over. Nothing. So after a few minutes of trying to get the screens off our windows and break in our own apartment I just said a tiny little prayer. Open my eyes, look down, lift up my foot. The key is stuck to the bottom of my shoe. Man we hit our knees and said a prayer of gratitude as quick as we could for that one because that was so cool!
I love how even the smallest blessings that the Lord gives us are miracles. 
Love you all,
Elder Cox 

Monday, August 24, 2015

August 24, 2015 - "Hey! Speak Spanish!"

I wish I could come up with a better expression than "roller coaster of emotion" because I use that one like every day, but this week has been.
We have had a couple AMAZING miracles this week. One of them we were just walking around in an apartment complex and a little blonde girl rides up on her bike and said "Hey! Speak spanish!" I was pretty confused but me and my companion just started saying spanish phrases that I've picked up out here. Then we talked to her for a second and asked her name. Her name was Ray Linn and long story short her mom is an investigator that we have been looking for for like 2 months because we didn't know her address! Now we are picking up where the last missionaries left off and teaching her again. I love little kids they are so in touch with the spirit even though they have no idea that they are.
My new companion Elder Baxter is awesome! He's such and amazing missionary already and he is making my job as a trainer so easy because he's already so humble and willing to be obedient. He has such a pure testimony and such a desire to help others. And we have been having such a great week! We have been able to find so many new people to be able to teach this week and I'm looking forward to updating you on how all of them are going because they are all such sweet people!  
Hope everyone's having fun in school but I'm so happy to be out here right now and not in classes like the last 14 years :)
Love y'all
Elder Cox

Monday August 13, 2015 - Reflections of Grandma Ruth

Davis, Grandma Wintle passed away Thursday August 13th.  She is greatly missed on this earth, however, she had been praying to be released.  She loved you dearly.  I know that there is one more angel looking over you.

August 3, 2011 

December 15, 2013

August 3, 2014 - Visit for Grandmas 94th birthday. 
January 21, 2015 - Goodbye visit to Grandma before leaving for the mission.

My thought for this week is to highlight Grandma Ruth.  95 years and 10 days of an amazing woman. I have always felt she was an angel here on earth and I am tender at her now being an angel from beyond.  I cherish my memories of growing up with her gentle love.  With that being said, I have rarely known a woman that could work so hard.  She was truly talented in so many areas. I cherish the moments of hugs and laughter. My love of gardening and all things growing were cultivated in her yard, as we walked and talked, weeded and harvested together in her garden in North Ogden. I have felt the same sense of accomplishment over the years that she expressed to me as we walked the long isle of her storage room in the basement...lined with jars and jars of every color and type of fruit and vegetable on this earth. I loved listening to her tell stories in the middle bedroom at grandma sleepover nights.  The smell of "Baby Magic lotion" as she animatedly tells the story of rocks in the belly of the wolf and the smart mama sheep. I really couldn't recall the story in detail, however, I do recall being highly entertained and entranced at many of her stories. Among my favorites memories are; hanging laundry out on the clothesline, playing spoons and games on the kitchen table with cousins, watching her paint, in awe at the talent and reaching into the deep freeze with feet in the air to find a twist-tied baggie full of gingerbread boys! Oh how many thousands of those as well as her peanut brittle and rhubarb pies (with the perfect crust of course) have we all enjoyed over the years.  

You would think that loss of eyesight and hearing would distract her from these activities; however, she did not let that detour.  I love the story of her going to the doctor at 92 and would have loved to have been there to hear her ask, " I just don't understand why I can only spend 6 hours in the garden and then I just have to rest, I am just so tired, something must be wrong!"  To this the doctor responded something like, “you do know you are 92 right!"  This instills in me my "forever young attitude." I love the teaching of hard work, and self-sufficiency that she represents to me.  I value hard work and hope to pass that on to my children. I cherish her legacy and love of family and the happiness that it gave her to talk of her amazing children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.  I loved my recent visit with her during her brief stay in the nursing home. I took her for a short, slow and very careful walk to get some fresh air outside.  As she tried to take a deep breath of the outside air, it was a shallowed and labored breath and I teared as I realized she was getting close to leaving this earth.  I held her hand as we sat outside and I commented on her soft hands.  I said, "they are softer than mine grandma", she smiled, "Baby Magic!" I held her hands and commented that these hands have done quite a lot in her almost 95 years.  She was tender and reflective as we talked of her excitement in seeing her mom that died when she was just 16. She said she wasn't going to make it to 100 after all, but her comment, "Don't you think 2 weeks shy of 95 is a good amount of life?" Yes, grandma, especially your life. Even with her hearing being so limited, I found just the right voice tone that allowed us to carry on a lengthy conversation.   I smile at her wit and humor. She wonders what I am doing holding the phone up to take a selfie and patiently let me take a photo of our hands together. We talked of having her come and live with us instead of being in the nursing home, "that she was very verbal about not enjoying."  Emily quickly offered up her room and Ben commented, "that would be so cool, he could hug her every day and he would bring his friends over all the time to sit and listen to her and laugh at her jokes."  
Our family cherished our last visit with her just 4 days before she passed. She smiled as Ryan handed her a small plate and said that we had brought her a treat with peanut butter and chocolate! It was a moment suspended in time that she was lucid; she heard and remembered each of us. She even added her familiar wit as she notices Ben reach over and quietly try to take a piece of my gingerbread boy off my plate as I am not looking.  I turn to hear grandma blurt, with a mischievous smile on her face, and one finger gently waving in the air, "I'm going to tell on you!"

I love that she wanted to make a difference in people's lives, and she did.  She would whisper to me what a sweet girl I have always been and that just meant the world. Grandma would tell me each time she saw Jeff how blessed I was to have such a good man.  She would hold Ben's cheeks and nearly every single time comment on what a good hugger he has been all his little life.  Ryan had a choice time with grandma making gingerbread boys for a school project. She thought all my boys were just so handsome and loved hearing stories and seeing photos of all my kids’ accomplishments. She loved Emily's sweet personality and would whisper love to her as she sat on her lap and as she grew would tell her how sweet she was. Grandma would always comment on Courtney's charm and beauty and was so proud of her for serving a mission.   In recent years, I loved her stories to my children of anticipating all year long that one orange or a piece of candy or chocolate as a present on Christmas morn. Reminding us all to be a little more grateful and a lot more simple in our wants and needs in life.  Ahh the changes in the world she has seen in 95 years of life.   I will forever remember the moment as you visited grandma for the last time before your mission just 6 months ago and she looked up at you and said, " you know you are one of my heroes!"  and you responded, "you are one of mine too grandma."

I feel this way as well when I reflect on Grandma. One of my heroes in life, for what she has been able to do and be, often times with the toughest of circumstances.  I truly have always felt such a connection with grandma and her place in my life. My heart has been so tender as I think of not having her loving smile around.  The memories that she has created for each one of her family members are different for sure, but the overwhelming sense of love is a common thread and will forever remain in my heart and guide the way I live my life. 

"Surround yourself with people that reflect who you want to be and how you want to feel, energies are contagious."  

All my love, mom

Thank you so much for those reflections mom. I am very bad at expressing emotion in words and especially over email, but I laughed and cried as I read this email as I remembered memories of Grandma's hard work, love, and sense of humor and wit that she always had. She really is one of my greatest heroes and I feel so much peace knowing that she is now watching over me. I remember the last time I saw her and told her that I was going on a mission and I wasn't sure if she fully heard me and knew that I would be leaving. But when she hugged me goodbye she held onto me for just an extra few seconds and I knew that she knew that that was going to be the last time I saw her here in this life.
Express my love to everyone at home. I love you all and I love our family so much. And most of all I know that families can be together forever and we have a great family to be able to spend eternity with.
Love Elder Cox

Monday, August 17, 2015

Monday 10, 2015 - I'm pregnant!

So as I'm sure y'all know, missionaries have a weird lingo and weird words for stuff. So this morning I got a call from President Jensen telling me that this Thursday at transfers I will be getting a new missionary straight off the plane. Since I'm training him he I'm his dad and he is my boy. 
In other great news here in Hannibal Missouri it's a billion degrees with a billion percent humidity! Ha Missouri is really starting to grow on me. I'm getting used to lunch being called dinner, and dinner being called supper. The mosquitoes and cockroaches are my best friends, they decide to come home with me some nights. 
So I thought I'd tell you guys about my favorite family here in the Hannibal Branch: the Voelkels. We go over to their house every Tuesday night after we volunteer at the food pantry out in Palmyra. I love going over there because their house is like the Cheaper by the Dozen house. They have 9 kids and their oldest daughter has 2 kids so with the missionaries over it's over a dozen. They have the cutest little kids and their just like the most solid family.
We have also been teaching a the Kindall family a lot and they are awesome too. Their house has the other part of the Cheaper by the dozen house: the animals. Last week in the middle of the lesson a rooster came into the house and we had to chase it around and catch it, then I held it on my lap for the rest of the lesson. This week there was frogs all over their living room so me and Elder Baetz played stack the frogs on the sleeping dog. The Kindall family is amazing and so prepared for baptism. The kids made a "Mormon Basket" that they keep all of their Book of Mormons and pamphlets that we give them.
Love you all have a great week
Elder Cox

"stack the Frogs!"

Monday, August 3, 2015

Monday August 3, 2015 - Pictures and Miracles!

Pictures are worth a thousand words right so I figure if I send a few picture this week that'll count as my email :)

On the stage of the Nauvoo Pageant at midnight closing night because we got to clean everything up. The lit up temple was watching over us the whole night.
Preaching to the corn cuz no one else would listen that day

 Signature Pose!

Here is a beautiful sunset over the beautiful town of Hannibal

and the Mississippi River

Actually I do have a SUPER sweet miracle that happened this week with the Nauvoo Pageant. So on Tuesday was our last day working up at the pageant. We walked around and proselyted from 7-8:30, then watched the pageant that started at 8:30. But at about 8:27 just as we were getting ready to go, 3 girls and a guy walked through the front gate and I knew we had to talk to them. So we waited on the path because we were like 100 yards from the gate, and started talking to other people and they somehow got away from us. But the pageant worker that had welcomed them at the gate came up to us and said "Hey did you see those 4 people that just walked in a few minutes ago, they're from Belgium and they're just over here on a roadtrip. They said they just stopped here in Nauvoo and they don't know why" 
Well obviously they were led here by the spirit but they just didn't know that yet. So we took off jogging to try to find them as everyone was sitting down, but couldn't find them. Tried looking for them for like a half hour after the pageant, couldn't find them. So I was pretty bummed.
Next day: Me and Elder Baetz decide to go street contacting in downtown Hannibal, which we never do because downtown Hannibal is only like 2 blocks and the only thing there is a few tourist Mark Twain stuff and a ton of bars. So it's usually super ineffective. But today for some reason we decided to do it. 
Lo and behold as we're walking down the street, I look across the street and there's these 4 Belgians! Walking in downtown Hannibal! Who does that! No one does that! So we sped walked/jogged down the street, crossed the street, almost got hit by a car and cut them off so we could talk to them. Because we weren't going to let them get away this time and we're missionaries so we do weird stuff like that. 
Long story short, they loved the pageant and the feelings they felt there, and we basically got them to bear their testimonies about it to us (But they didn't know they were doing that either cuz we're sneaky missionaries like that). But then we told them they were. They have the contact information for the missionaries back in Belgium and Morrell(A good friend on a mission there) is totally going to baptize them.