Elder Davis B Cox

Elder Davis B Cox

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Monday December 21, 2015 - Pierre was baptized!

This week Pierre was baptized! It was an amazing service. I told a little of Pierre's conversion story before but he has one of the coolest conversion stories and now one of the strongest testimonies I have ever met. He gained a testimony of the Book of Mormon literally over night as he listened to Book of Mormon on audio during a night shift. Over 50 chapters in one night. After meeting with missionaries for almost a year and as soon as that happened he was all in. And he loves the gospel.
He also has a super cool testimony of the priesthood because last Sunday his leg and hip were hurting and they have been for a while, but during church it was tingling really bad and went numb so he asked if we could give him a blessing. During that blessing I felt really prompted to command his Sciatic nerve to be healed. I probably spelled that wrong because I don't even really know what a sciatic nerve is, but a few days later we got a text from him that I'll never forget. it said:
"Guys hello last Sunday you anointed me about my left leg now I fell better I am agree with priesthood authority is from Lord Jesus Christ because is healing oil never seen miracle"
He's African so it didn't make 100% sense.. But it was really cool. 
I also have a new companion Elder Sessions!
Love you all have a great Christmas! Remember the true meaning of Christmas. To remember Christ and how he can change us, just like he changed Pierre and like he's changed me. I know that he was born and that He lives today.

And I'll see you in a few days family!!

Love Elder Cox

Monday, December 14, 2015

December 14, 2015 - Elder Martino in IOWA

This week was awesome in so many ways! First of all Elder Martino came and we had a Zone Conference and MLC with him. I don't think I've ever written so fast because I was just trying to write down all the wisdom that he was just laying down. He gave 4 hours worth of trainings total without looking at a single note and blowing my mind the entire time.

The most important thing I learned from Elder Martino was the importance of members in missionary work. He told us that about 1/1000 people we talk to on the streets end up being baptized. While 2/3 people who are invited by their member friend and taught in a member's home are baptized. Why? Because of the spirit that is able to be present so much more abundantly in member's homes! It was very inspiring and really motivated me to get to know the members better in this new area so that they trust me to teach their friends. 

He also bore his testimony of the Atonement which was one of the coolest experience I've had on my mission. His personal witness was so powerful and sure. As part of his testimony he also told the story of Agnes Caldwell, a 9 year old pioneer girl in a handcart company caught in the cold snow, with almost frost bitten frozen feet. 

The rescue group that came for their group took all the old and unable to walk in the wagons and started towards Utah, while Agnes and other small kids ran alongside hoping to be offered a ride. All the kids eventually gave up until Agnes was the last one. The driver looked down at her and said "do you want a ride?" Still running she said yes and the man grabbed her hand and sped up the horses and made her run. She thought the man was terrible for doing this with the pain of every step of her frozen feet. After what seemed like miles to her the man stopped, picked her up, wrapped her in a blanket and put her in the wagon. She later realized that by making her run, the man had saved her feet and probably her life by helping her blood get flowing before she came in the wagon.

He compared this to the trials we face in life and how our all knowing Father allows us to go through trials not to punish us or torture us, but because that is what is best for our lives and will give us the strength to keep going on later. 

I've pondered that a lot as I've met with many different kinds of people on my mission. One thing I have noticed is a universal trait of successful people is that they grow from hard things. A universal trait of less successful people is allowing their situation/circumstances to be an excuse not to grow. To take the easy way.

Elder Martino had us, during personal study the next day, write down in our journal attributes we wanted in our wife/marriage that we saw in President and Sister Jensen's marriage (they are the best couple of all time, general authorities and everyone comment all the time how great their marriage is). It made me think about marriage a little bit which was weird because that's an eternity away, but it made me mostly think about the type of people I want to surround myself with. President Jensen says he married someone smarter and more motivated that him, even though he's a rocket scientist for NASA and a genius, so that they would push each other to be better their whole lives. Those are the kind of people I wish to associate with as well.

This email has been a lot of just amazing spiritual things that I've personally learned this week so sorry if no one else feels this applies to them.. but it applies to us all because it's about Christ, but next week hopefully I will be able to report on Pierre Manirakiza being baptized and my new companion that I will get this Thursday!

Love you all!
Elder Cox

Monday, December 7, 2015

December 5, 2015 - #ASaviorisBorn

I wanted to start off thanking everyone for the birthday emails and letters! If I haven't emailed you back this week I for sure will next week because email time is short but they all made my day!
This week has been fantastic. We have been so blessed and seen so many miracles this week.  Elder Ellis and I both agreed that this was one of our best weeks on our mission on a lot of different levels.

This Friday and Saturday we had the Cedar Rapids Nativity which was SWEET! If any of you have seen The District it was like the Luaoh (I don't know how to spell that) missionary event but Christmas version and on STEROIDS! The members here are sweet and they went all out. There were hundreds of nativities from the community set up in the gym, live music from different churches bands and choirs throughout the day, church tours, cookies, and over 2,200 people ended up coming. And hundreds of them ended up leaving with a church DVD with our number on the back so we're hoping to get some phone calls soon :) There are several conversion stories of people coming to the nativity in past years, feeling the spirit so strong in the church, and ending up investigating and joining.

Also the First Presidency Christmas Devotional last night was the BOMB!
And I forgot to mention it last week but the Church's Christmas initiative this year, #ASaviorIsBorn is amazing. If you haven't watched the video yet watch it and share it with everyone you know. The spirit behind little children telling the story of the birth of Jesus Christ is so powerful. 

This week we were able to have Pierre Manirakiza feed us fufu again and also come to church! Which is awesome because now he will be able to be baptized on December 19th which he is so excited about! He is a great man. He is from Burundi Africa and is supporting his family here as well as 4 adopted children who still live in Africa. He works so many hours a week but still makes gospel and service a priority. He is president of the African Society and helps refugees get a start once they get here, and he has a van that he bought with his own money and lets anyone use it for "God's errand": going to church, church activities, visiting someone at hospital, anything in the service of God. He just hangs the keys to it on the wall and lets anyone in the community take it. He is a great example of charity. 

This week Elder Martino of the Seventy is coming on a mission tour on my birthday on Wednesday so I'm sure I'm going to have some sweet things to write about next week! 
Love you all!
Elder Cox