Monday, September 18, 2017

Back in Anchorage!

This week has been pretty crazy!!
Sunday night we slept on the chapel benches to check it off our bucket
list of things to do when you live in a church. Then we took off on
the ferry early Monday to Whittier. It was about a 7-8 hour boat ride,
then drove up to Anchorage.
Saying goodbye to Cordova was pretty hard. The people there are so
amazing, and they have helped me learn and grow so much! I am so
grateful for the opportunity I had to serve there.
It was amazing, and it was a super beautiful drive, especially in the
fall. We have been staying with the Klatt Elders here in Anchorage all
week and will be there until Wednesday. It's been super fun serving
with them.
Friday night we got our transfer calls......IM STAYING IN ANCHORAGE!!!!!
I got called to serve in the O'Malley ward, and Elder Moala is going
to be my companion. He just finished getting trained, so I'm super
pumped to serve with someone who still has that greenie fire.

I know that the Lord is directing this work, and I'm excited to serve
under his direction in Anchorage again. It's gonna be legit.,2 legit to quit.

I love you all

-Elder Cody Poppleton



Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The Accident!

So this week we were able to have a pretty interesting experience.
We were on our way in for the night. And we were driving down the road
that the church is on, which is a little ways out of town, and were
about half way down the road, and there were a couple of trucks in the
road with their hazards on. So as we got closer one of the trucks
moved so we could get by.
I rolled down my window to see what was up, and there was a white
pickup truck that had gone of the road and into the ditch, and hit a
tree. When I looked in the cab, there was blood EVERYWHERE. there was
two guys standing on the road and their faces where super white and
kind of in shock at what they were seeing. I asked if they had called
the cops and they hadn't. So I told one of them to call the ambulance.
Then I flipped my hazards on and got out of the truck.
I walked over to the truck, and asked the man in the cab of the truck
if he was ok, arms he turned and looked at me, and his nose looked
more like a blob of silly putty than it did a nose.
He said he was face,  but that his face hurt.
So I just started talking to him for a little while, and he reeked of
alcohol, and had a few empty pill bottles in the cab.
While I was talking to him, the cops showed up and he said "oh no!!!"
And began to say very colorful things.
The cops took him away in the ambulance and that was that.
So it was an interesting experience to say the least.

The people of Cordova are amazing. I love them so much.
I had a lady tell me today the Book of Mormon came from the pits of hell.
So I was able to share my testimony with her of the divinity of the
Book of Mormon.
She didn't want one but that's ok.

The work of the Lord will not be frustrated and will not be stopped.
And I'm so glad I can participate in progressing the work here in
Cordova.



Monday, July 24, 2017

Miracles

Miracles are brought by faith, and miracles happen everyday here in Cordova.
One of the biggest miracles I've seen here were the baptism of
Greithly, Yagnnesis and Ashantee.
They are three Dominican girls that are good friends with some of our
members children.
And so with prayer, some revelation, and a sleep over to get them to
come to church, with an invitation to be baptized started an
incredible adventure, not only for the girls but for us as
missionaries as well.
It was incredible to see that as they were taught the lessons they
were so willing to change. They were so excited. The mom was also
super excited which was a miracle as well.

The lord has provided a way for his children to do as he commands.
Whatever it may be.
I am so grateful that I can assist the lord in doing his work, and
bring his children unto the savior, so that they too can receive the
blessings that come with these ordinances.

I love you all, and I hope you have a legendary week
-Elder Poppleton






Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Called to Serve

These last few weeks have been super fun! The weather has been nice and the work has been good. The community is really nice, and friendly. This week ends transfers and begins a new one. I get to serve another six weeks here in Cordova with Elder Smith.
There are 12 missionaries going home on Tuesday, and seven coming on Wednesday. We also get a new Mission President on the first of July. So its really exciting because there are going to be a lot of changes in the mission. 

In my studies this week week, I decided to focus more in the Doctrine and Covenants. 
and in the 4th section it says that those who have desires to serve God are called to the work and that really hit home for me. It's not just missionaries, or church leaders. It is everyone who has a desire to serve the Lord that is called to His work. 
As missionaries we are promised that there are people prepared to receive the gospel that we need to find.  Well, that promise isn't just for the missionaries. it is for everyone who is called to the work.  There are people everywhere who are ready to come unto Christ. 
Member Missionary work is so important. It is vital. 

I'm excited to see what happens here in Cordova over these next few weeks. Fishing season is in full force this time of year, so everyone is gone a lot on the water, but that won't stop the work from progressing. 

Stay Swell,

Elder Cody Poppleton


Monday, June 12, 2017

Cordova in June

Nyob Zoo!!!
These last few weeks have been super crazy!!
The last few days, the Salvation Army has been selling all of their
stuff because the store is closing down. We have friends with the
pastor there, and so he asked for our assistance in helping move all
of the heavy furniture and such, and putting it into people's cars.
It's interesting to see how regular human beings, can turn into
ferocious predators in a matter of seconds when they find out things
are like 90% off. 😂
When we finished, the pastor and his wife took us out to get some
pizza, and we had an amazing "conversation on religion" (they had no
idea I was teaching them the lessons)
Well long story short, they are now going to read the Book of Mormon!! #awesome
It was an incredible experience.
We also were able to have a zone conference this last week, and we had
a special guest presiding at this meeting. It was Elder Russel M.
Nelson. President of the quorum of the twelve apostles.
It was cool to hear from him and his wife as well as Elder Gong and
his wife. We actually got to hear from the security guard too. That
was awesome!
Being a missionary in the bush of Alaska...you kind of get forgotten.
So receiving a package from my mom this week made my whole mission pretty much!
I was so excited. Helps me know I'm not totally forgotten. 😁

The People of Cordova are AMAZING!!! Even if they literally have no
desire to learn or talk about religion. They still want to talk to you
and be your friend.
Total 180-degree from anchorage. In anchorage everyone pretty much hates you.
But here people like the missionaries for the most part and they talk
to us, and we get to know them, and do service for them. Its amazing!
I love the people of Cordova with all of my heart, and I pretty much
never want to leave.

President Nelson in this last General conference said something along
these lines.
Disciples of Jesus Christ are willing to stand out, speak up, and be
different from the rest of the world.

I LOVE THAT!!!
I know that as we become truly converted to the gospel of Jesus
Christ, we will not be afraid to Stand out, speak up, or be different.
And that all starts with the Book of Mormon.
So if you aren't reading every day. Please do so.
The prophet has asked us to do that as well. And whatever excuse you
may possibly have to not read it everyday is invalid. Because there is
no excuse.
If you have time to check Facebook, you have time to read.
If you have time to eat, you can listen to it while you do so.
If you're too tired, suck it up. And read.
Its so important. When Christ asked Peter "do you love me?"
He is also asking you that question. And if your answer is yes. Then
keep the commandments.
Because is says "if you love me, keep my commandments." And we are
commanded to read the Book of Mormon every day.
And I know that as you do so, your testimony of the savior and the
prophet Joseph Smith will increase. And that the lord will bless you.

Anyways, ✌️

-Elder Poppleton





Monday, May 22, 2017

First Week in Cordova, AK


So I have been Transferred to Cordova Alaska. My new companion is Elder Smith. and I freakin love it here. 
There is a small branch here, and the members are amazing. 
but I think my favorite part about Cordova, is how beautiful it is. 
Everywhere is just breath taking. I cant even handle it. 

One of my first days, we went around so I can kind of get an idea of what area I will be serving in, and we watched as this gigantic dog, ran across the road. well, as we got closer to it we soon realized that it wasn't a dog. It was a wolf. a huge wolf. It was beautiful. it was white with a kind of goldish tint along its back. 

There are bald eagles EVERYWHERE! it is so amazing. I think the only downside to Cordova is the fact that it rains....every day...all day. But i will gladly take the rain, for the beauty of Cordova.

Another fun part of Cordova, is the fact that we get to live in the church building. Our beds and dressers and stuff are in one of the classrooms. We use the kitchen and the Bathrooms, and my favorite part is that we get to shower in the baptismal font! IT IS AWESOME!

When I got here, there was literally no work...we had a lot of potential investigators, but that was about it. So we went to work. We set some goals, and hit the streets. 
We went boat trackting, and ran into one of the few potential investigators that we have. 
His name is Seth, and he wears these awesome rose tinted glasses. 
We had an amazing discussion about Isaac and Abraham, and the sacrifice, that Abraham was willing to make. 
His excuse to not coming to church this last Sunday was because he liked to go play pool, and socialize on Saturday late into the night. 

I then decided to ask him, what was he willing to sacrifice to our Heavenly Father. and he replied that he was willing to give his life if he was asked. 
I then pulled the representative of Jesus Christ card, and told him that God asks him to come to church on Sundays. and that meant sacrificing a night of fun, to make it to 9am church the next day. 
He thought for a moment, and agreed to coming to church. 
haha unfortunately he never showed up, and he texted us later and apologized. 

I learned a lot from that lesson though, and it really got me thinking. 

What am I willing to sacrifice for my Heavenly Father? 

as I contemplated this, I have realized how much my testimony of the Savior has increased. 
I challenge all of you to ask yourself the same question. 
what are you willing to sacrifice? 
find it, and do it. even if it is just putting down the phone for like 10 minutes to read your scriptures. that is a huge sacrifice to some of you ;) but you can do it.

I know that as we sacrifice things, we will get something better in return! 

--
 
Elder Cody Poppleton

Monday, May 1, 2017

Homeless, Homeless, like the Christ child was....



This week has been a rollercoaster of ups and downs.
But the most eventful day by far was Saturday. We started out the day
with absolutely no motivation to get out and work. So what did we do?
We got out and worked! We had a good lesson with a member of ours
named Brian, and after that we had an open day, so we went to go visit
a recent convert that lives in Mountain View (the ghetto of anchorage)
and on our way over we saw a homeless native man who was sitting on
the side of an abandoned building all by himself. Elder Hunter wanted
to go talk to him, so we pulled over and got out of the car. Right
from the get go, he starts bad mouthing us, and giving us crap. So we
start asking him question, and he pulls out this little plastic pocket
size box. He opens it up, and its full of paper, and weed.
And rolls one right in front us. This guy didn't give two craps. It
was so funny. He lit up and continued to swear and tell us how awful
we were, and I couldn't help but smile.
So we continued on our way, and our recent convert wasn't home, so we
decided to go street contacting downtown.
We started walking and the first couple we walk by, stopped and said
"no way! Y'all are looking for me!" We obviously has a puzzled look on
his face, and so he explained that he was a convert from Fairbanks,
and he was anchorage to have a risky surgery. He had been very nervous
and stressed out, so we walked with him back to his hotel room and we
gave him a blessing.
Its pretty cool how the lord puts us in the paths of those who are in need.
It truly is a testimony to me that God loves all of his children, and
he answers our prayers.
We then continued to walk downtown and we ended up walking down this
alley way that was conceded in murals, so we took pictures in front of
one, and an older gentleman called out and said "I'm glad you guys
enjoy my murals."
I knew from that moment I was about to have another interesting experience.
We started asking about how all of this came to be. And this man who
was named Ziggy had spent 20+ years painting this alley way.
He noticed we were missionaries and told us how he was about to start
his own church.
Because he believes in spiritual things and following the spirit
wherever it guides.
For all of 2 seconds. I thought he was elect.
He then said
"I'm starting a cannabis church."
He then continued to tell us how it was a very spiritual experience
and how he discovered, that we as humans are indoctrinated and brain
washed. And how we created god as an idol, and figure of hope. But in
reality the souls of creatures were like a totem pole. And how people
are on the bottom. The dogs and birds control us.
Ziggy would give 1/2 of a second to let us speak.
He got himself all worked up, and before we knew it, he was screaming
and cussing and right in our face.
So we smiled and listened for what seemed like eternity but was really
about 35 minutes.
And then he stormed off and walked into a side door of an old building.
It was a very interesting experience.
My companion and I looked at each other, and just laughed.
For sole reason we found that whole situation humorous.
We went on our way, with our chins held high, and a skip in our step.
We had a successful day that day.

Here is what I learned.
Without Charity, we are nothing.
If we don't have that perfect love of Christ within us. We literally
are nothing.
I can't serve the people of Alaska without it.
The spirit will leave me, and I will have no success.

I've learned that people don't know care about how much you know,
until they know how much you care.
If you have the genuine charity towards them, they will see it.

Fear is the strongest emotion, and greatest tool that Satan uses against us.
But the opposite of fear, and even stronger than fear, is love.
Light will always conquer the dark, and love with always conquer fear.
Christ is our perfect example of how we need to love.

As we come to not only know about Christ, but to know Christ
personally, we will develop that love. As we feast upon the words of
Christ, and trust in him and his Atonement.
With love we can cast out all fear, therefore leaving Satan powerless.

I love the people of Alaska,

-Elder Poppleton