Nathan DeBeikes missionary homecoming talk Sunday July 12, 2015 (Week 104)

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Subject: Nathan DeBeikes missionary homecoming talk Sunday July 12, 2015

Date: Sunday, Jul 1​2​, 2015 at ​9:45 AM

Good Morning,

This is weird. It’s really good to be back to see you guys. There’s a lot of new faces here. But a lot of familiar ones. It’s great to see you all. I’ve only been home about four days now. And it’s been a strange adjustment definitely, but it’s been good. As you know, or as some of you may not know, I’ve just returned from the England Birmingham Mission and I had six different areas on my mission. And what I wanted to do today was to go through the main lessons that I learned from each area. Kind of break it down into I guess six of the main lessons that I learned that really changed my life forever. There’s billions of lessons that you learn as a missionary. So it’s hard to take it down to just six, but I wanted to do that today. Now, my first area was a place called Coventry, it’s pretty much in the middle of England. One of my favorite things about my mission was that in England, especially areas where there’s a University, it’s populated with people from all over the world. I had a chance to meet people from almost every country. It’s an incredible experience to just to see all these different cultures and all these different people.

One experience from Coventry was I was with my companion and we were street contacting. It was cold, it was raining, which was pretty much every day of my mission, and we were walking down the street that we street contact a lot and it led up to the University. So there’s a lot of students walking up and down. Students are generally a bit more interested than old English people, so we’d tend to try to talk to them. So my companion and I, we were walking down the road and there’s a Domino’s on the left and there’s a big advertisement, a personal pizza for one pound, and I thought this sounds really good right now. So we decide to go in just to warm up a bit. And we go in, we order a pizza just real quick and we ask how long wait will be and they say ten minutes. My companion and I look at each other and we decide to go out to talk to people while we have time to wait. So we go out and the first guy we see we talk to. He ends up being a guy from Romania named Luke (middle in photo below)

Elder DeBeikes - Elder Harris Luke baptized January 2014

He looks at us and goes “Ah, Mormons”. And we go yea, yea, how’s it going, what do you know about us. And he goes, Well I know you guys are a cult and you guys worship a con man. Not quite. Maybe there’s a time when we can meet to actually tell you what we do believe and he’s like, sure, why not? So we end up meeting with him and Luke starts to progress really quickly. My companion, Luke, and I, were all nineteen years old at the time and born within a month of each other. And we became quite close and we became good friends. As he started to read the Book of Mormon and started to learn the truth, he was able to realize how wrong he was. His dad was a preacher for the Pentecostal Church, and he was not the biggest fan of our church. And so he kind of told Luke all these things about us that weren’t true, and as Luke came to church, and as he prayed, and as he read the Book of Mormon, he started to progress. And it came to a point where we were talking about baptism one day with him and he was really nervous about it, mainly because of his father. He was just scared, he was nervous, he knew that he wanted to be baptized, but he didn’t know if he could And there’s one experience, one night we’re at this house and we’re just talking about baptism with him, and we just told him, Luke , like, you know, you know that this is true. He had told us many times. And he knew that he needed to be baptized. And so we told him of a date we felt he’d be ready for, which was a few weeks later. He said I don’t think so, I don’t think I can do that.

And I’m like, Well, what if we knelt down together and prayed about it? ​​And he was okay with that. So we knelt down and the three of us were kneeling in his main room, in his flat, and he asked if I’d say he prayer. And I prayed and I don’t remember exactly what I said, but it was along the lines of just praying to help Luke to know that this is something he should do and he would be comfortable with it. After my prayer he looked at us and he goes “Is it okay if I say a prayer in Romanian?” I don’t know if I mentioned he’s Romanian, but he’s from Romania. And so he asked if he could pray in Romanian and we said, yea, of course. So we knelt down and he started praying in Romanian, and that was a couple months into my mission, and throughout my whole mission, I don’t know if I did ever feel the Spirit as strongly as I did at that moment when he was praying in Romanian. I didn’t understand a word, but it was a powerful experience and it was almost as if I was looking at us three kneeling there.

After the prayer he looked at us and goes, “Okay, I’ll do it”. He ended up being baptized on that date. That was such a testimony builder to me​ that the power of prayer, and the power of the Spirit, is so real, and it can happen for anyone. And it’s an experience that I’ll never forget as long as I live. I’m so grateful for that experience. So that was, I guess, the main lesson, one of the lessons that I learned from Coventry. The power of prayer. The power of the Spirit has in converting.

Now, my second area was a place in Wales, called Llanelli. A lot of people ask me to say that twice, so I’ll say it again, Llanelli. Wales is a crazy place. But, I was there for my first winter, for four months. From December to the beginning of April. It rained, and it rained and rained some more, every single day (photo below from Wales).

Elder DeBeikes Wales contryside sheep 2-24-14

And in the winter in Britain it gets dark around 4pm. The suns just completely down. Street contacting in Llanelli didn’t really exist. So we tracted. We tracted a lot in the cold and in the dark. I had a companion who, we were different, we were very different. It was tough, it was really tough.

My mission, it was the first time I had really been away from home for more than two weeks. So I had a really hard time with that. I just remember nights praying for a while, for a long time, and prayed harder that I had ever prayed in my life. Just to have comfort to know that I can get through it, just to be able to get through one day at a time. I guess what I felt was the power and the comfort of the Holy Ghost. And I really knew the Holy Ghost was carrying me through each day. It’s a humbling experience. But something I’m so grateful for to see the hand of God in my life. To know that He knows each and every one of us individually and personally. And He knows each and every one of our challenges. It was a great lesson to learn, that God knew me, and that He was there with me. All the way.

From there I went to a place called Loughbrough. And in Loughbrough I had a personal study. Where, I was, coming from Llanelli where I was a bit sad and I felt like i didn’t have any success. I felt like all I did was knock doors in the rain and nobody wanted to talk. I was pretty down on myself. When I was in Loughbrough, I had a person study where I was reading out of the Book of First Nephi. In chapter sixteen it talks about the story where Nephi and his brothers, they’re in the wilderness and they go out to hunt, they need food. Nephi’s bow ends up breaking and everyone’s scared of how they’re going to be able to get food. In verse twenty of the sixteenth chapter it says, “And it came to pass that Laman and Lemuel and the son​s​ of Ishmael​ ​did begin to murmur exceedingly because of their sufferings and afflictions in the wilderness​;​ ​a​nd also my father began to murmur against the Lord​ ​his God​;​ ​yea, and they were all exceedingly sorrowful, even that they did murmur against the Lord.” And if you think, Lehi, a prophet of the Lord, murmured, you know it’s pretty serious. Then you have Nephi, in verse twenty three, it says ” And it came to pass that I, Nephi, did make out of wood a bow, and out of a straight stick, an arrow; wherefore, I did arm myself with a bow and arrow, with a sign and with stones. And I said unto my father: Whither shall I go to obtain food?” (Loughborough photo below)

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Now that personal study, that scripture changed​ my mission, changed my life forever. While a lot of people might murmur, a lot of people might be down on themselves and just complain and think, why me? Why is this happening? I realized that we shouldn’t be those people, we should be Nephi, and we should go make our own bow. I was very fortunate to learn this lesson early on in my time in Loughborough, because I set a lot of goals after I read that scripture and I realized that I needed to just stop complaining. I needed to just go out and get to work and make my own bow. I wish I had time to tell you all these experiences I had in Loughborough and in my areas. Those experiences ​that ​I had changed my life and it wouldn’t have happened if I would have just kept sitting back feeling bad. I know that we need to work and it’s by the sweat of our brow that we will be able to obtain blessings​ for ourselves​.

From Loughborough I went to Nottingham. In Nottingham, I was there for seven months. ​It was my longest area and I had so many incredible experiences there. One of which my companion and I were, it was transfer day, we had a lot of things to do to help out the zone. We were trying to just figure out how we were going to manage all of our time and we didn’t think we’d have enough time. It turns out that we were able to make a bit of time, about twenty to thirty minutes, to go street contacting. I mean we didn’t exactly feel like it, we were quite busy, and we felt we had a lot of other stuff to do. But we tried to make time just for those twenty minutes. So we went out and started talking to people and within the first few minutes, we talked to a girl named Ariel (middle below photo).

Elder DeBeikes - Nottingham Ariel's Baptism - Charlie's Angel Pose 2-29-15

She’s from inTobago, and a long story short, we ended up teaching her and becoming best friends with her, and she was able to be baptized. She’s someone that I love and I cherish that friendship. And it’s a bit scary to me, thinking about, what if we didn’t make time? What if we didn’t end up finding her. We wouldn’t have that friendship. We wouldn’t have that relationship that was created through the gospel. And it taught me that when we give our time to the Lord he will bless us so much. When we try to follow the Spirit, when we do what we know is right, He will be there and He will help us and He will guide us. We weren’t doing anything special, we weren’t doing anything different than what we usually did in the street contact, we were just doing it. I know that when we give a steady consistent effort, even if it seems like nothing good will ever happen, eventually God will bless us. I know that for a fact.

From there I went to Swansea, which is in Wales again. The missionaries, for about a week before I got there, had been teaching a couple and the guy, Sean, was less active. His girlfriend, Caitlin, wasn’t a member. Sean was baptized when he was twelve and after a few years he stopped coming to church and he started doing a lot of things that he ended up regretting later in life. The missionaries street contacted him and they just talked to him, and at first he said ‘ I don’t want to talk to you guys’ . I’ve been there, I’ve done that. They just persisted and his girlfriend, Caitlin, ended up being the one to say ‘okay, yeah, you can come over’. Sean and Caitlin are two of the most amazing people (photo below).

Elder DeBeikes - England Swansea Shaun & Caitlin last day 4-21-15

Caitlin, they ended up getting married, about a month ago so that they could live together. She ended up getting baptized about a week after I left the area. I was only there for six weeks. It was really too bad, but I saw that the power of invitation is incredible. We don’t know who’s waiting or who needs the gospel or who needs a helping hand in their life. But when we try to follow the Spirit, when we just ask people, when we invite, that is when God is able to help us and help them to the Spirit, to know that we can help them. And so I learned that there are always people out there and all we need to do is invite them. It’s nothing special.

I went to my last area called Lincoln, England. It’s there that I learned that the best relationships, and the best friendships, are those created through the Lord. I was in Lincoln, England for three months and I made some of the best friends of my life. One of which was a guy named Kevin Wong (below).

Elder DeBeikes - England Lincoln Kevin 1 5-18-15

He’s a Chinese student and when Chinese people come over to England, they pick their own English name. He’s an amazing guy, I love him. He’s the biggest Chinese guy you’ll ever meet. He loves American football. He plays lineman for the American football team at the University. It’s a very strange thing to think a Chinese person coming to England to play American football. He’s great. We became very close. And to see a guy, from coming to not knowing anything about God, not knowing anything about the life of Jesus Christ, to being able to teach him about God, who he is, how he’s their father, to feeling the Spirit. To teaching him how to pray, he’d never said a prayer in his life. He was able to pray and just feel the Spirit immediately and know that this is something good. As he continued to come to church and to read the Book of Mormon, he was able to learn more and to feel the Spirit. He was able to have a desire to follow God. It’s a huge testimony of the Lord to me to know that, that friendship is something that will last forever because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I’m running out of time. Those are just a few experiences that I had that have shaped my life, that have changed me. I’m so grateful for my mission. I mean, it really means everything to me. I shared this earlier this morning that Jeffrey R Holland came to our mission last month and he talked about how a lot of missionaries talk about how they can’t wait to get back to real life, they can’t wait to go back to doing things that they love. He stopped right there and he pounded the pulpit and he goes ‘ this is a real as life is ever going to get, this is as real as it’s ever going to be. I don’t want you to ever, ever , ever say that.’ I’ve been home for four days now but it’s enough time to realize​ that there’s nothing more meaningful than helping others come to Jesus Christ. I love that about my mission. I love that for two years you have consecrated time 24/7, your purpose is to help others to come unto Christ. Now, I hope to still be able to do that, but obviously not as much as I was able to do on my mission. I’ve really to know that God lives. I really know that he loves us. I know that Jesus Christ is His Son. That he is the Savior and Redeemer of the world. And we rely on the power of the Atonement. We can overcome any difficulty, any challenge, that we ever go through. I know that He knows us on such a deep personal level that we can’t even comprehend. I’ve come to know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. Every person that has kept their commitments to read the Book of Mormon, as much as we ask them, has come to know that it’s true. I know that anybody with a sincere desire to know that the Book of Mormon is true will be able to find out that it is true, and that Joseph Smith indeed did translate it, and that he was the Prophet of the Restoration. I wish I had time to tell you all, all these experiences and how much my mission means to me, but we’d all be dead by that time. I really, really, really, really, love my mission. It means the world to me. I love, I love you guys. I felt your love and I felt your support and your prayers the whole two years. I thank you so much for that. I leave these things with you in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

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Elder Nathan DeBeikes ARRIVED Home (Week 103)

What an exciting and fun day as Elder DeBeikes’ family and friends gathered at the Los Angeles Airport on July 8, 2015.  We all arrived early in anticipation of Elder DeBeikes’ flight set to come in from Birmingham England to Newark New Jersey then to Los Angeles California.  United flight 1493 arrived at 5:18pm on Wednesday as twenty of us waited for him to walk down the long walkway.  This was such a fun and joyous time for all in attendance, especially Margie.

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My Final Email As A Missionary (Week 102)

From: Nathan DeBeikes <nathan.debeikes@myldsmail.net>
Date: Mon, Jul 6, 2015 at 3:11 AM
Subject: My Final Email As A Missionary

Dearest family and friends. Well, here it is, my final email as a missionary. I really just can’t believe it. Time has gone by so fast. When I began, I thought this day would never come, but it has come faster than I could have even imagined.

 
This was a great week to finish off my mission, and I will just go through some of the highlights.
 
So on Tuesday, one of our investigators named John took us out to lunch at this restaurant called Brown’s Pie Shop, which is at the top of Steep Hill. I met John last week while street contacting in city centre, and we ended up talking for about an hour all about the church and the Book of Mormon. He’s about 60 or so, and is such a nice guy. He is really interested in the Book of Mormon, and has loved what he has read so far. It was a great time going to lunch with him, and it was so cool to meet someone, know them for about an hour, and then he just takes us out to lunch. Only as a missionary. He ended up coming to church yesterday and really enjoyed it. I have a good feeling about him.
 
On Wednesday, we were able to start teaching Kevin’s friends Sarah and Lucy, who are both so cool. Kevin is a legend. We also played basketball with them on Friday and Kevin and I played two on two with one of them on each of our teams. It was hilarious. It was Sarah and Lucy’s first time playing. Kevin is so good, I loved being able to play with them. Kevin also brought them to church on Sunday for the third time, and they really enjoyed it. Kevin is really well known in Lincoln ward, and everyone loves having him in the ward. I’m not excited to say goodbye to him tonight.
 
Thursday we had zone conference in Leicester, where we met our new mission president, President Leppard, and his wife. They are from Surrey, England, and are SO cool. They are so funny, and so faithful. He will be such a good mission president, it’s a shame I only get to know him for about a week. After the conference, I had my departing interview with President Leppard. It was great, he got to know me a bit, and gave me so much advice for my future. I have a lot of love for him, even though I barely know him.
 
Saturday, for the fourth of July, we went to the Randalls! All six missionaries were there, and we just helped in their back garden for a couple hours with weeding and what not, then we had a barbecue, which was so good. It was awesome to be able to actually celebrate Independence day, even though we are in the country that we gained independence from. I love the Randalls thoroughly, they are so amazing, and love the missionaries. I wish every family was like them when it comes to doing things for missionaries.
 
Yesterday was very bittersweet. It was a great Sunday, just so strange that it was my last time going to church as a missionary. I took the opportunity to bear my testimony for the final time to Lincoln ward. I love that ward, and it was hard to say goodbye to a lot of the members.
 
Tonight we are going to the Finches for a family home evening with about ten more people, where I will say goodbye to most of the great friends I have made in Lincoln. Tomorrow I go to the mission home, where I will have a testimony meeting and dinner with President and Sister Leppard, and the 24 other elders who will go home. We will spend the night there, then board the plane at 9am from Birmingham.
 
I just can’t believe it. I feel like the past couple days, my whole mission has kept flashing before my eyes. I am so grateful for my mission. I am so grateful for the hard times, and for the good times. I have met so many people, made so many friends, have had so many incredible experiences, and have learned the most valuable lessons. As I have struggled through this journey, literally putting my blood sweat and tears into it, I have come closer to God, and learned so much about the way he works. I have seen His impact in so many peoples lives, and most of all, mine. I have really come to know that He is our Father, and that He loves us perfectly. He knows us individually and personally. I know that He will never forsake us. I have gained a knowledge that Jesus Christ is His son, of this I am sure. I know that He atoned for our sins. I know that if we rely on Him, that through the enabling power of His Atonement, we can get through any trial, pain, sorrow, ANYTHING. He is perfect. He loves us. I am so extremely grateful for all of the instances where I have been able to witness that over the past two years. I have seen how the Book of Mormon has changed lives, has helped people with no belief learn more about our Savior, and has helped them feel His power in their lives. I am so grateful for all that I have learned from it. A lot of people try to disprove it, but there is no logical explanation that can disprove the Book of Mormon. Science can be disproved, but faith can only be proved through personal experience. Nobody who actually reads the Book of Mormon and prays sincerely to find if it is true can deny it. Everyone who has told me that it was made up, and that Joseph Smith was a false prophet, hasn’t even bothered to take time to actually read the book that is evidence of his prophetic role. A lot of people have told me that I am just a teenager running on blind faith, and that I don’t really know what the Mormons believe. I know what we believe. I have been doing nothing else but studying it and teaching it to people every single day for the past two years, how could I not know what we believe? I have studied it, and I have prayed about it. Through the Holy Ghost, my answers have been confirmed. I am God’s witness that this is His restored church in its fullness, and Jesus Christ himself is at the helm, with a living prophet who communicates with Him to give us guidance in today’s crazy world. This is the way to true, lasting joy. Of these things I am absolutely positive. I love the gospel. I love my mission, it has forever changed my life. Thank you all for your constant love and support through it all. See you soon!
 
Love, Elder DeBeikes 
On our way to conference  
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Basketball! 
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Happy Fourth of July!  
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Brother Williams, our amazing ward mission leader and one of the greatest men  
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The Martins  
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Crazy Martins  
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The Mulliss Family  
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Crazy Mullisses.  They are the best!
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Kevin Got Baptized! (Week 101)

From: Nathan DeBeikes <nathan.debeikes@myldsmail.net>
Date: Mon, Jun 29, 2015 at 2:04 AM
Subject: Kevin Got Baptized!

Hello once again! Just a couple more of these…craziness!

This was such a fantastic week. We have consistently been finding new
people to teach, people are starting to progress, and Kevin got
baptized! I will go through some of the highlights

So I was able to go to Nottingham one last time on exchange, and Elder
Bo’s is actually serving there now, so I got to spend the day with
him. I got to see Ariel! I can’t even express the love I have for
Ariel. She is one special person. It was so good to be able to see her
and be able to catch up and see how she is doing. If all that came of
my mission was being able to meet her, then it would have been good
enough for me. Talking with her just brought back so many memories of
being with Elder Alldredge and having awesome lessons with her. I am
so incredibly grateful for my time serving in Nottingham, that city
will hold a special place in my heart for the rest of my life. It was
great to be with Elder Bos again as well, he is an awesome guy, and
such a solid missionary.

On Friday we went to a Chinese restaurant with Kevin, his two friends
Sarah and Lucy, and the other Lincoln elders. It was so much fun, I
love Chinese food, and it was great to be able to relax a bit and
enjoy awesome company. I don’t think there has been anyone that I have
taught that has made me laugh as much as Kevin. He is honestly so
funny, truly one of a kind. It has been such a privilege to be able to
teach him. I wish all of you could meet him. He is going to visit me
in America one day, so hopefully some of you will be able to!

On Saturday, I was able to see Yixing, who is one of the recent
converts from Loughborough. He was visiting Lincoln, and wanted to see
me, so we were able to talk to him for a bit. He is awesome, and it
was so good to be able to see him. Loughborough is another one of
those special special cities.

Yesterday was Kevin’s baptism! It was an amazing service. The only
thing that we could find that would fit him was a 5XL jumpsuit, but he
pulled it off nicely. He said he felt like he looked like a hip hop
singer, then started to pretend to be a rapper rapping about being
baptized. We are always laughing with Kevin. There was an amazing
spirit the whole time, and he asked if I would be the one to baptize
him, so I had the great privilege of being able to do that for him. I
was a bit nervous because he is such a big guy, but it all turned out
well, and he was so happy the whole time. I truly love that guy so
much. Five of our other investigators were able to come to either his
baptism or to church, so it turned out to be an amazing Sunday, to end
off a great week.

I wish you could all experience everything I do in just one week, and
I wish I could write it all down, but it’s just impossible. There is
nothing like a mission. I am so grateful for my mission. I cannot
believe I am starting my last full week of my entire mission. I just
can’t believe it. I have been through SO much. I have been through
crazy ups and downs, all of which I am so thankful for. I don’t know
what the rest of my life would be like without my mission, but I do
know that it has blessed and enriched my life forever. I am going to
finish as strong as I can this final week. Thank you all for your
constant love and support. Have a great week!

Love, Elder DeBeikes

Chinese restaurant with Kevin, his two friends
Sarah and Lucy, and the other Lincoln elders.

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Ariel!

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KEVIN!

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Departing Interview With President Rasmussen (Week 100)

From: Nathan DeBeikes <nathan.debeikes@myldsmail.net>
Date: Monday, June 22, 2015
Subject: Departing Interview With President Rasmussen (Week 100)

Hello hello, this week has been another blur, but it’s been good. I
will go through some of the highlights.

So on Wednesday, I had my departing interview with President
Rasmussen! There are three people going home this transfer in my zone
including me, Elder Haynie, and Elder Pogue. We all met at Nottingham
train station, from which we drove the zone leaders car to the mission
home in Birmingham. I was the person who got to drive, which was
awesome to be able to drive again, I absolutely love driving in the
UK.

So we go to the mission home, and I was first to go for my
interview. It lasted a bit over an hour, and President Rasmussen and I
just reminisced on our favorite memories of the mission, he asked me
to talk about what I learned, and he gave me advice for my future. We
talked about all sorts of things, and it was so great to be able to
just have that one on one time for so long with him, he is such an
incredible guy. He is one of the most successful people I have met and
will probably ever meet, so I was treating his words of advice like
pearls. I am so grateful that I got to serve under him. Talking to him
about my mission and reflecting back on certain times, I just realized
how much I have been able to accomplish these past two years, and how
much I have grown. Gosh I love my mission. He and Sister Rasmussen
actually finish their mission next week, so I will have a new mission
president for my last week in the mission.

While Elder Haynie and I were waiting for Elder Pogue to finish his interview, we were talking to Sister Rasmussen, and she decided to take us across the street and
give us a little tour of the house that they have been living at the
past three years. It was so cool, because not a lot of missionaries
are able to see it. It was one of the nicest homes I’ve been in on my
mission. We said goodbye to President and Sister Rasmussen, because it
was the last time that we would see them (at least until our mission
reunion in October). Sister Rasmussen is our mission mom, I love her
so much, I just can’t tell you how grateful I am for everything that
they have done for me, I have learned SO much from them.

I had an exchange on Thursday with Elder Lowe, who’s from Australia.
We had a great time together, and our day was jam packed. We had a
dinner appointment in Newark, which is a thirty minute train ride
away, and we ended up going to their old address that is still on the
ward list. They still live in Newark, but far enough away where he had
to come pick us up and we left our bikes locked up there. We were
running a bit late when he dropped us back off after dinner, so we
hopped on our bikes and were racing to catch the train. We
accidentally took the wrong way, which made us have to cycle even
faster. We were a couple minutes from the station, when suddenly my
back tire blew out, and I couldn’t ride anymore. I was freaking out
because if I missed the train, we wouldn’t be able to catch another
one for another hour and a half, meaning we wouldn’t get back home
till about eleven. I picked up my bike and just ran with it the rest
of the way, and we jumped on the train just in time for it to leave. I
feel like it was a lot more suspenseful in real life, but it was
honestly crazy. Once we got to Lincoln, we had to walk our bikes back
to the flat, which is about an hour and a half walk away. We got home
and just crashed. I was so exhausted. I guess the reason I’m telling
this story is just because it is things like that that make the
mission so fun. We were laughing so hard the whole time, and we were
going crazy. It was so exhausting, but that’s what I love about the
mission. With so little time left, I am just trying to appreciate the
little things even more. I am so glad I am here to be able to have
experiences like that, and to be able to teach the gospel on top of
all that. It’s just the best. It’s so hard sometimes, but it is
honestly the best.

Obviously our other highlight has been teaching Kevin. He is so cool.
He is just one of the funniest, friendliest, most outgoing people I
have ever met, and he loves the gospel, loves the Book of Mormon, and
is so excited to be baptized this upcoming Sunday. I love that guy.

We have been finding new people along the way, which has been nice,
and Kevin brought two friends to church, which was awesome. I’m just
so happy and loving life. Thank you all for your love and support.
Have a great week!

Love, Elder DeBeikes

Saying goodbye to President and Sister Rasmussen
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Driving with Elder Haynie and Elder Pogue!
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Trying to balance my bike on Elder Lowe’s while he pulled his bike. My bike just wouln’t work on its own. This method proved to be extremely unsuccessful, but we eventually figured out how to work it.
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We had Hot Pot with Kevin, Yang, Mandy, and Cindy. They are so awesome!
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So apparently Lincoln is the birthplace of the tank. Who knew?
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Elder Holland-The Rasmussen’s-Kevin Sets Baptism! (Week 99)

rom: Nathan DeBeikes <nathan.debeikes@myldsmail.net>
Date: Mon, Jun 15, 2015 at 2:16 AM
Subject: Elder Holland-The Rasmussen’s-Kevin Sets Baptism!

Dear family and friends,

This was one of the most memorable weeks of my whole mission, probably
even my life. We had the immense privilege of being able to meet Elder
Jeffrey R. Holland! Before I get to that, I will go through some of
the other highlight of the week.

So Monday was Elder Jones birthday, so we went up and saw the
cathedral and the castle, and went to this really cool old restaurant
on top of the main bridge in city centre, which apparently is the only
building in Europe that is built on top of a medieval bridge. Just a
little fun fact for you. It was very cool though. We also had dinner
and family home evening at the Finches’ home, who are some members of
the Lincoln ward. They invited about 10 YSA aged members, and we
brought Kevin along with us. It was so much fun to be able to hang out
with them, play some games, and feel the spirit together. Kevin really
enjoyed it as well, it’s so awesome how natural he is at meeting
people and getting to know them. He is honestly one of the funniest
people I have ever met. They also made a Star Wars themed birthday
cake for Elder Jones, because he is the biggest Star Wars fan I know.
So Monday was indeed a great day.

On Wednesday we had to spend the night in Nottingham at Elder Tupou
and Elder Palu’s flat again, who are the two elders from Tonga. That
was fun, but we had to get up at 3:15 to be able to get ready, walk to
the other elders’ flat, take a taxi to the train station, and board
the coach at 6:15 which would drive through Leicester and Coventry
picking up missionaries along the way, and drop us off in Birmingham,
where we had the mission conference.

President Teixeira, who is the current Europe area president, and
President Kearon, who is the soon to be Europe area president, also
came with their wives, and they spoke to us before Elder Holland.
Before any of them spoke though, we were all able to go up and shake
Elder Holland’s hand, and tell him our name and where we are from. It
was a pretty cool experience being able to shake an apostle’s hand and
look him in the eye. You could just tell how close to God he is.

The talks were really great. Elder Holland spoke to us for almost two
hours. He talked a lot about his mission and how much it means to him,
and how much it has affected every part of his life. He also talked a
lot about the atonement. It was so cool to be able to be so close to
him and listen to him speak personally to us, rather than 15 million
members like in General Conference. He is actually really funny as
well. He was talking about how great life must have been in the garden
of Eden for Adam and Eve, and he was pretending to be them when he
said “oh what should we do today, hop and the back of a zebra and go
pick some raspberries?” He just made a lot of funny comments like
that. But he also got pretty fired up, like he usually does. Gosh, it
was just so amazing, and the spirit was so strong. I am so grateful I
got to see him in my last transfer.

After they had to leave, we had lunch together as a mission, which was
fun to be able to hang out with all of my mission friends. I was just
looking around and I was so grateful for all of the relationships I
have made in the past two years. Then we came back in to the chapel,
and it was time for my mtc group to give our departing testimonies.
There were 25 of us sitting together on the stand, and as I looked
around, it was a very surreal moment realizing that these guys that I
met two years ago, who I was JUST in the mtc with (or at least it
feels like it), are about to go home. It was a pretty cool experience
being able to stand in front of the whole mission and bear my
testimony. Usually it’s only done in a zone conference where there are
two or three zones together, but we got to do it in front of the whole
mission. I was just sitting up there thinking about how I go home
soon, how President and Sister Rasmussen go home soon, and about Elder
Holland speaking about his mission and how much it means to him, and I
was just overwhelmed with gratitude for my mission. I am so glad I
came out. I am forever grateful for the experiences I have had, for
the people I have met, the relationships I will hold onto forever, and
the growth that I have had that I would not be able to experience
doing anything else. It has been so amazing.

After that, President and Sister Rasmussen gave their departing
testimonies, since it would be the last time most of the missionaries
would see them. Fortunately, I will have a departing interview with
President Rasmussen in the next week or so, so I will have a chance to
properly say goodbye. After them though, we took the coach back to
Notts then the train back to Lincoln, getting home around 10pm. It was
a long long day, but one of the best.

Besides all that, we have just been meeting new people and preparing
Kevin for his baptism, which will happen on the 28th. He is really
excited. Well, this has been a long email. I love you all so much,
thank you for your love and support, have a fantastic week!

Love, Elder DeBeikes

Some pics from the mision conference

Elder DeBeikes - Lincoln England mission - conference 2

 

 

 

Elder DeBeikes - Lincoln England mission - conference 5

 

Elder DeBeikes - Lincoln England mission - conference 1

 

Elder DeBeikes - Lincoln England mission - conference 3

 

Elder DeBeikes - Lincoln England mission - conference 6

 

Elder DeBeikes - Lincoln England mission - conference 4

 

 

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Elder Holland Scotland Stake Conference (Week 98)

From: Nathan DeBeikes <nathan.debeikes@myldsmail.net>
Date: Mon, Jun 8, 2015 at 2:03 AM
Subject: Elder Holland Scotland Stake Conference

Hello everyone! Wow, another week gone, can you believe it? Time has
never gone at a faster pace. We had a pretty good week this past week,
we’ve been working really hard, and I’m hoping to see the fruits of
our labours very soon. The main thing we have been doing is trying to
build our teaching pool. We have been street contacting like mad men,
talking to everyone we see. I’m trying to finish stronger than ever
before, I really want to leave knowing that I made Lincoln a better
place. Elder Jones and I are still having a really good time together,
we laugh all the time and enjoy working together. I’m still just way
happy, and keep getting more and more excited to see everyone. I’m
trying not to think about it too much…

Let’s see, I can’t really remember much of what happened this week. I
just know that we have met SO many different people, it’s been crazy.
Off the top of my head, we have talked to people from Ireland, Angola,
Congo, Lithuania, Poland, East Timor, Nigeria, Russia, Spain,
Cameroon, Latvia, Germany, St Vincent, China, Thailand, Philippines,
Portugal, Dubai, America, Iran, and various places throughout England.
There are other places, but I can’t remember all of them. As you can
see, there are people from almost every continent here! It is so
amazing being able to be surrounded by so many cultures, I have
absolutely loved that about my mission. I love meeting people from
everywhere and being able to learn so much about places throughout the
entire world. And to think that you could fit the entire country into
California alone…crazy.

Other than that, we have still had our main focus on Kevin. He is
doing so well, I love that guy so much. He came to church yesterday,
where we had a special broadcast stake conference. So Elder Holland
was in Scotland yesterday, and he spoke at a stake conference there
that was broadcast throughout all of Northern Europe. It was very cool
to see him in a different setting than the very formal General
Conference. He is such an amazing man, he spoke mainly about the Book
of Mormon, and bore such powerful testimony as a special witness on
its divinity. It was awesome to see him speak, it was honestly one of
the best talks I have ever heard. I love the Book of Mormon so much.
It made me really excited for Thursday, where we will have a mission
conference in Birmingham, where he will be there to speak to our
mission! It’s gonna be so great, I can’t wait.

Well I love you guys so much, thank you for all of your constant love
and support, hope you have a great week!

Love, Elder DeBeikes

This was on a train back from a dinner appointment with the Mullisses, they live quite a ways away. It was the nicest day of the whole year so farElder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln train to Mullisses 2   6-1-15 Elder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln train to Mullisses 1  6-8-15

 

Elder Jones!

Elder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln Elder Jones 6-1-15

 

We do a lot of street contacting along this road

Elder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln Tracting with Elder Jones 6-8-15

 

Elder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln Elder Jones Tracting 2  6-8-15

 

 

 

This is at the huge wharf that is right next to the university.

Elder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln Elder Jones Wharf by University 6-8-15

 

Elder Nathan DeBeikes - England Lincoln Elder Jones Wharf by University 2  6-8-15

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