Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Week Sixty-Five


This week was just as crazy as crazy as any other week, and crazy things are just normal now.

We got locked in our apartments one night this week because there were riots in Delhi, and the surrounding states. To make  very long story short, a man who is a self proclaimed God, a spiritual leader with many followers, was convicted and sentenced to jail. His followers did not like that at all, and so they started some protests in Delhi. I'm not sure you can check, but I heard just outside of Delhi 30 people died, and some of the Riots were where our sisters are serving and so we were really worried about that. When all this was happening Elder Openshaw and I were just riding in an Auto trying to get home, it was pretty cool.

Congrats to Marsh Valley on a big win over Malad. I'm excited to see lots of wins this year and to see the videos and pictures of Parker playing! Also heard BYU won, but it must have not been that impressive of a win. 

But the most important thing I could say this week is...HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM! 

Thanks so much for everything you have done for me, and that you still do for me, there are so many day I would do anything to come back home and watch a Jazz game with you and laugh when you yell at the refs, or to help you make dinner, or to help do all the chores around the house because I need an excuse to not go outside and help dad;) I miss all the fun times we had and I promise I'm praying for you and thinking about you all the time. I think it says a lot about the mom who raised a kid who can live in India on his own without a problem, this place is hard to live and it's hard to serve missions, but I know I can make it here because the way I was raised. Thank you so much for everything, and make dad take you out to a nice dinner;)

I hope all of you are reading the Book of Mormon. I promise if it becomes a daily habit to read, everything else in life will improve. Every day I read from the Book of Mormon and I feel like my mind is cleared every time, all the stress goes away, the problems become smaller, and my day is always better. The Book of Mormon is more than just a book. It truly will change your life as you study it and apply it's teachings!


Elder Armstrong #GoEagles #EveryFallWeRise

Monday, August 21, 2017

Week Sixty-Four

Hey guys,

This week was such a good week; anytime you get to meet an Apostle of the Savior Jesus Christ it is a good week. Elder Christofferson is so cool; he was way different than expected. He is just a normal guy who is really good at living the gospel; he has the Spirit with him at all times and teaches with power and authority. It was such a great experience to meet him and shake his hand and to be able to learn from him. He talked a lot about the law of Heaven and obedience to the gospel and how it brings us joy. I know that without laws there could be no happiness or sadness and that God truly would not be God without laws and commandments. I hope we can all learn to love the commandments of God and realize they are given for our blessing.

This week was transfers, and nothing changed for me which was such a great thing to hear. I'm still in Lajpat Nagar with Elder Openshaw.  We have a lot of work to do and it's really fun to do it with a good friend. I am eating well that's for sure; there hasn't been a day so far as companions that we haven't eaten non-veg at least once. Non-veg basically means chicken or mutton, unless we go to the Muslim colonies to get beef. It's so cool to have a companion that shares the same culture as you and is able to talk about football and basketball and still do awesome work. 

Last night I taught the best lesson I have ever taught with Elder Openshaw and two members from our branch.  The lesson was to their friends that they had referred to us and the lesson was so full of the Spirit and they are so accepting and humble, ready to receive help. Their names are Shivangi and her mother (don't know how to spell or pronounce her name yet). But they are so great; they have had their struggles without a father in the home, and with the different issues that are always caused by living in their small little colony. It was great to testify of the Savior and his love, and what opportunities can come when choosing to follow the Savior by being baptized and receiving the Holy Ghost. They are progressing really well and we have high hopes for them. 

Sounds like BYU starts off this week, and so does Marsh Valley, I bet it's good to have football season back. Elder Openshaw and I are dying to be there...so count your blessings and realize what a blessing it is from Heavenly Father to have the game of football.;) 

I know what I'm doing is true, and that every day I spend in India is for the benefit of me and my brothers and sisters here in India.  This gospel is either true or it is not, there is no grey area. The Book of Mormon is true or it is not. And I want you to know that I know it's true, however hard it is to understand, or to live, the Gospel is from our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ, and I've felt it countless times by the Holy Ghost. Please pray and build this testimony for yourself, the Hope and Peace you receive is unbeatable.


Elder Armstrong
My trainee in the middle and his trainee

Sister members of the New Delhi Stake
Me at the Lotus Temple

Elder Openshaw and me at the Lotus Temple

Kite Flying with the Branch on India's Independence Day

Didn't do so well!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Week Sixty -Three

Hey guys!

This week was an awesome week in Delhi. Great work was done in our zone and Elder Openshaw and I found many new investigators, I mean, who wouldn't want to meet with two very handsome white guys who want to help you live a happier life? I guess not many people. The work was great this week and transfers are coming this week. I don't really know what will happen, but it would be awesome to stay in Lajpat with Elder Openshaw and this branch. I just baptized Rabina and Siyon and Elder Karkala is already gone, if I leave that would be sad for them, I think. But we'll cross our fingers. Everything is going great, life is awesome.

Everyday Elder Openshaw and I try to have fun while working, and this week we had a lot of fun. I don't think I've ever climbed as many stairs and knocked as many doors as we did in the tall buildings here in Delhi. My legs are so dead. It doesn't help that its 1000 degrees outside at 1:00pm in the afternoon and that we have to run through the middle of traffic to jump on a moving bus. It's such a fun place to live as a missionary. We even had a guy open the door without pants on and yelled at us to get away. One night as we were exploring deep into our area to find new people and places, we came across this Muslim colony and went into the market. While trying to make it through the market, out of the corner of my eye I saw an Afghani food place and we had to eat there for dinner because Afghani food is the best thing ever. Anyways we walked in and they just had these full chickens slow roasting in a Tandoori barbecue. It was way too tempting, so Elder Openshaw and I decided to sit down and eat an entire chicken together. He got left and I got right and we pounded an entire chicken with some Afghani roti's and it may have been the best meal ever. Crazy things just happen with fun American companions. 

This week I don't have much, Elder D. Todd Christofferson will be here this week and man are we excited to see him. It will be such a great experience to learn from him. We are so blessed to have Prophets and Apostles in our day. If you follow their counsel you can't fall off the straight and narrow path. If you look at the simple things like the Family Proclamation, the teaching they give in General Conference, and the constant counsel they give the members of the church throughout the world, it's easy to see that they are inspired by God and that if we follow them, true peace and happiness follows. I'm thankful that this week I will be able to meet and shake hands with a living witness of the Savior. I hope all of us recognize the blessing it is to have them in our lives, and act on that recognition by reading their teachings and most importantly, following their teachings. 

I love you all...Go Eagles...it's that time of year again.

Elder Armstrong

Monday, August 7, 2017

Week Sixty-Two

Happy Rhaki! 

This week was one to remember that's for sure! It all started when last Monday after emailing we went to Vasant Vihar and played an intense game of soccer. We found this little dirt park maybe 50 yards long and 30 yards wide that was just abandoned in the middle of nowhere. It started raining about half way through the game, and it was serious rain. I was so wet and muddy that we just stood in the rain longer for the mud to wash away. Then we walked to lunch through the back alleyways of Delhi that had basically turned into rivers. There were points where I was walking in water up to my knees. It had to have been full of human and animal feces, and it smelled pretty bad. But lunch was really good;)

This week something else extremely crazy happened as well. There was an Emergency transfer across the mission and Elder Karkala had to leave to help be one of the Zone Leaders in West Zone, so I got a new companion. His name is Elder Openshaw, my best friend in the mission. I think I've written about most of the things Elder Openshaw and I have done together, but some stories are best saved for after the mission. We just embrace the craziness of Indian life and go out of our way to do as many crazy and fun things as often as possible. We work like you can't believe and it is fun to work because I have someone that I can actually talk football with as we are walking to appointments and inviting people on the streets. He's from Boston so obviously things are tense right now because the Celtics took away Gordon Hayward and the Patriots won the Super Bowl.  We play one chess game every night and so far I'm in the lead. Anyways things are going great.  We are working hard and have a lot of good plans for our zone to improve. 

Siyon was confirmed yesterday and Rabina is doing really well, she got admitted into a school that teaches English so we are so happy for her. She speaks English okay, but now she will have such a bright future. Tonight we will go to Rabina's home and since it is Rhaki she will tie a beaded bracelet on my wrist, and put a bindi on my forehead.  I will eat the special sweet, and then I will be her brother and her protector. I can't believe it's been a year since last Rhaki, time is flying and I love the traditions of this country. 

This week I noticed something that was pretty good for me to notice, and I think maybe it could help some of you as well because we all make this mistake. So every night when we get home we do the usual, shower and clean the junk off of us, send numbers, call district leaders and then play chess. But sometimes, like this week we go to this shop to buy food and see the shop keeper who is our favorite man ever. He is like a 5 or 10 minute walk away and you have to go through this pretty cool dark alley to get there (just like all of Delhi) And on the way, there were so many people sleeping out on cots and on the ground. I realized quickly that they were all auto drivers, and they were homeless. Then I remembered the auto driver who earlier that day I was arguing with over 10 rupees. (10 rupees really isn't that much money). I wanted the correct price but was upset because he was charging more than we thought was correct, and it happens literally every auto ride...the Hindi I know the most is the words that help you bargain and get cheaper prices because I'm so used to "white tax". But now I realize that that's just a little dumb, of course they should be honest and get the money they earn the right way. And of course I should try and get the correct price, but there is no need ever for me to haggle the man and cause him grief and to annoy him, when he could be one of the ones who has no home. I just feel that we never know what people are truly going through in life, I have no idea what that man's life is like, and we often get angry or upset at people, or make judgments about them, and we have no idea who that person really is or what they go home to at night, if they have a home. 

The world needs a lot more love, and maybe an extra 10 rupees could help show that, or maybe patience while I get the correct price, and most importantly, a smile and a thank you, would probably be the best way to show that love. Please think of others, you're actions will change dramatically and so will your happiness.

Elder Armstrong