Elder Davis B Cox

Elder Davis B Cox

Monday, July 18, 2016

July 17, 2016 - Nauvoo Temple and Nauvoo Pageant

Patience was baptized!!! It was a miracle and half to help her get to this point but it's been amazing to see the change that has occured in her life and how happy she is now. There is always a new light in people who are just baptized. It's literally a new life, being born again isn't just a fun saying. It's amazing I love being able to witness it.

At the Nauvoo temple with President and Sister Badger

Ran into the Frei's from Syracuse!

The nauvoo stage crew challenged the Elders to a tug of war at pageant.
 Shredded all of our baby soft hands but it's ok because we won.

This week we also went to the temple and pageant with all the departing missionaries. This time my companion Elder Lords was in the departing group, so we also picked up my new companion Elder Devenport at the temple on Tuesday. The pageant was amazing as always, this time it was the actual Nauvoo pageant instead of the British. It is humbling every time to see all that the early saints sacrificed to build the temple in Nauvoo. It really brings home the eternal importance of what happens there.

This Saturday Sam is getting baptized! He is amazing we've only been teaching him for 4 weeks but he is the most prepared person I've ever taught from step 1. Today after church we went over all the baptismal interview questions with him and it was basically a "listen to Sam's testimony" lesson. He sounds like somebody who has been a member of the church for their whole life. He is so excited to be baptized and washed clean and receive the best gift ever the Gift of the Holy Ghost!

Always a funny moment: Was walking out to the truck one day and all the sudden heard a terrible screeching noise that I immediately thought sounded like a wounded rabbit coyote call. Turned around to see a massive hawk pick up a rabbit and carry it away across the park. I guess it doesn't sound as funny writing it out but I died laughing for some reason!

Hope you all had a great week and welcome home Matt and Aaron from the home ward! 

Love Elder Cox

July10, 2016 - Mission-Field of Dreams!

I'm going to start this week off with a quote from Elder Bednar that I've hear our new mission president quote several times this week from the new mission president's seminar:

"Jesus Christ has paid the price for the sins of EVERY person who will ever serve in, live in, or even pass through your mission boundaries"

We had "get to know the new mission president" zone conferences this week and that was President Badger's invitation to everyone was to view our areas with that quote in mind. To look at every person we meet/talk to with the view that Christ loves them perfectly and suffered for their sins. I would challenge everybody to do the same it brings amazing charity and love to your heart.

This week was great so many "small" miracles every single day. We had zone conferences then after the Friday zone conference in Davenport Elder Lords and I got to go down to Nauvoo to the pageant! I love the pageant! The spirit there is amazing and the enthusiasm everybody has about the pioneers, the gospel, the temple, is amazing. It was the British pageant on Friday so we got to go up on stage at the end and sing Called to serve with about 200 other full time and service missionaries.

Random sidenote I thought I'll include. As we were driving at night this week we would drive through swarms of fireflies and as they would get smashed on the windshield they would leave big glow in the dark streaks up the windshield for a couple minutes. It was probably because I was so tired I was hysterical but the first time it happened I just busted up and was laughing so hard I was crying and couldn't stop. 

Back to important stuff: Patience came to church again today and is getting baptized this Saturday!! She is super ready and prepared. She worked til 3 a.m. last night and was still there for 9:00 church. Dedication.

We are applying for first presidency permission for Kay to be baptized so pray for that! She's amazing she's been to church 12 times and we had an amazing lesson with her this week on the Atonement and we had President and Sister Badger there with us!

Serge came to church again this week! Still not convinced he needs to be baptized again but loves church and already considers himself a member. He's extremely smart and is really high up in Wells Fargo here, so he'll keep coming to church and he'll know he needs to be baptized eventually we'll (and the spirit) will keep working on him.
Mission-Field of Dreams!

Ghost in the Corn!

We also got to go to the Field of Dreams this week!! So I finally got pictures mom! It was sweet we were driving through at about 7:00 so it was technically closed but the grounds guy said we were fine to be there so we had the whole place to ourselves!! He just told us to be sure to close the gate behind us. So we took some pictures, played catch on the field for a while, hit each other some flyballs in the outfield just like in the movie. It was Heaven it wasn't Iowa I don't care what anybody says. 

Love you all have a great week!
Elder Cox

Friday, July 15, 2016

July 3, 2016 - Can I get a Amen Hallelujah‏

Still wearing grandpa's watch everyday :)

President and Sister Jensen's last night in Iowa

"This is only the 11th selfie I've ever taken in my whole life."
 -President Jensen
Before I explain the subject line I have to talk about the saddest part of this week: President and Sister Jensen left back to South Carolina. Saying goodbye was like saying goodbye to grandparents they're such amazing people and have taught me SO much about being a missionary. They have probably taught me even more about just being a good person and disciple of Christ for the rest of my life. 

Luckily the sadness of goodbye doesn't stay because our new mission president, President and Sister Badger, are amazing as well! We got to go over and meet them Thursday night after they had a few hours to try to settle in while their phone's were being blown off the hook. But Elder Lords and I got to visit with them for what ended up being about an hour and a half getting to know them, answering questions that have come up, helping introduce them to the current policies of the mission, and making some plans for this upcoming week when they will go to "Get to know President and Sister Badger Zone Conference" everyday. 

They're amazing. Any normal human beings would have been overwhelmed into submission by all that was placed on their shoulders that day, but they told us that they just felt an overwhelming comfort from the spirit that was going to help them figure everything out. The spirit can do amazing things when we have faith.

So today was fast and testimony meeting. We had one of our potential investigators Serge randomly come to church with Vania (because Vania is awesome and just invites everybody that she meets to come to church with her so she comes to church with someone new each week.) Serge is from Cameroon Africa, he's great, really humble and extremely smart, works for Wells Fargo. As we were sitting there after they explained what fast and testimony meeting was and a few people had born their testimonies, Serge got up (he can't use his legs because of Polio) and crutched up to the pulpit to give his testimony. 
When he started with "Can I get a Amen Hallelujah" I was a little worried. But he ended up bearing an amazing testimony of Christ, about praying for God to send him to a church since he had just moved here, and of a few servants of God showing up on his doorstep a few days later inviting him to church. Once again the spirit can do some amazing things when there is faith.

Patience: The lady who called last week and asked if she could get baptized, came to church today with Hannah (The girl who was baptized last week) And is now on date to be baptized next Saturday and she is super happy!

"The Lord will reward and richly bless you as you humbly and prayerfully serve Him. More happiness awaits you that you have ever experienced as you labor among His children."
-First Presidency Message in the front of PMG

I want you all to know that this ^^ is true. When we give our will up to the Lord and humbly serve Him, we will be the happiest person we can be. I want you all to know that I am the happiest I have been my whole life, and I've had a pretty great and blessed life. But I've never lost myself so much. And I love it.

Love you all,
Love Elder Cox

June 26, 2016 - Hannah was baptized!

Hannah is Baptized!
This is Hannah at her baptism. And next to her is Mom's new best friend Sister Katzenbach.
Hannah was baptized yesterday and confirmed today!!! It was such a happy day I don't think she's stopped smiling since then. I can't remember if I included this in one of my past emails, but if I have I'll tell it again. Hannah heard a story from a recent convert that had met with missionaries for years but never felt right about baptism. But finally one day they felt like they should be baptized, so they called the missionaries and asked if they could be baptized the next day and they were. 
Hannah wanted this kind of experience so she could know for sure this was what she was supposed to do and 2 weeks ago she had that experience reading the BoM. She read, she felt the undeniable spiritual confirmation, and called me and Elder Lords while we were driving and asked if she could be baptized on June 20. Well that was a Monday night, family night, so the ward didn't want that so she was baptized yesterday. And she's SO solid I love her!

Another miracle:

Today during Elder's quorum Elder Lords stepped out to take a phone call. When he came back in he said it was Patience, a former investigator who was supposed to be baptized about 2 months but didn't show up to her baptism then dropped out of contact for a while. SHE called and asked if she could be baptized tomorrow! (Once again a Monday, great) We have to work a little with her so she won't be getting baptized tomorrow, but we're excited for her to be baptized soon.

This week we had Zone Conferences and our last one was in Nauvoo. Afterward we got trained by the Nauvoo sisters about the Nauvoo pageant. I'm so pumped to be able to experience the pageant again and the great spirit in Nauvoo. Elder Lords and I stayed in Nauvoo the night before Zone conference and were able to go through a session and the spirit there is amazing!

Love you all, Elder Cox

Alma 29:9
THIS is my joy. 

PS Heidi Z IS in FACT one of my new best friends!  What started out as a simple text request from Elder Cox for replacement contacts turned into a 3-day deep and spiritual conversation about the gospel, life, health issues, the refiners fire, family, the mission... Iowa, you name it, we talked about it! We joked that afer three days of back and forth texting and sharing, we could have just picked up the phone...However, who ever gets to have a three day conversation.  Of course life kept going all around us and we would pause the conversation and then pick it up again the next hour or the next day.  The most important conversation was the tender bond we shared when talking about the love between moms and their sons. Heidi and her son Jacob were baptized into the church together 10 years ago, becoming true pioneers for their family.  Jacob was killed a few years ago in Afganastan while trying to resue a wounded Afghani soldier 2 weeks before he was to return home.  The tender testimony of the Plan of Salvation, how her son was strong and good and that she looked forward to seeing him again touched my heart.  Struggling with her own severe health problems, we talked of the need to allow others to serve you, how difficult it is to be on the receiving side of service, yet how important it is.  That night, after our conversation during the day, my Elder Davis gave her a blessing very similar in nature to our conversation.  That was amazing.  When any one scrolled through our 3 day conversation they asked why we didn't just pick up the phone and call, we laughed.  Davis said he was not surprised that we were the best of friends now, because he thinks we are alike.  I take that as a compliment as I was drawn to be friends with this incredible woman and her abounding faith, determination to live a good life and ability to endure well. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

June 19, 2016 - Like a broken record

                 The Nauvoo Zone :)

This is the view from our window where we stayed in Nauvoo. Beautiful.

Update on Hannah: She passed her baptismal interview and is being baptized this Saturday the 25th! She's amazing and definitely one of the most ready people I've ever seen prepare for baptism! Today in Gospel Principles class she was the only non-member there but she commented more than anyone and bore testimony of everything that was taught. We were all loving it!

This week we also met this great guy named Sam Aduto. He is the brother a former we were trying by. The former, Rose, had moved but Sam was still living there. Elder Lords said he had been invited several times in the past to be taught and participate in the lessons but had never been interested, but we invited him anyway and ended up having one of the best 1st lessons I've ever had! It was a testimony to me that we should always invite because people are always being prepared!

Whoa what a week. I basically got to go on a road trip of the mission this week! It was fun and great to meet a lot of the missionaries, but man it was tiring. So we had MLC in Iowa City Tuesday then Zone Training Meetings everyday for the rest of the week in Cedar Falls, Iowa City, and Nauvoo. And we gave the same training 4 times so that's why I feel like a broken record :)

 Then we finally got back late Friday night to have one day of the week back in our area before we go and do the same thing for zone conferences next week. But the Lord blessed us so much in that one day to be able to find people to teach and help Hannah prepare for her baptism! 

God is great!
Love Elder Cox