Elder Rodeback

Elder Rodeback

Monday, December 30, 2013

December 30, 2013

Hey ya'll!!!
Merry New Year!!!!  ALMOST!!!!!

Man, the past week has been awesome!  WE had such a solid Christmas!  We talked to the family and had an awesome Christmas Devotional.  The only downer was that Elder Walker was sick for a few days, but eh' can't control it.  We got to walk around Lakewood on Saturday and that was pretty fun.  P.S. that trapper hat was a really good idea mom.  My head was so warm!  We got to talk to a whole lot of people and we even we able to talk to some Jewish people...  they thought we were Jewish as well.  To be able to testify of our Savior Jesus Christ this Christmas was one of the best experiences!  I love to know and feel the power behind the sentence, "I Know that My Redeemer Lives."  To be able to teach and testify the same things that Peter, James and John did, is the greatest opportunity I have ever been given and I will be eternally grateful for this experience.  I cannot express what the Lord Jesus Christ means to me.  I know he lives and is at the head of this church.  I love ya'll!!

Elder Rodeback

                           Elder Rodeback played Joseph in the Christmas Fireside for the members.

Alex Boye performing for the New Jersey Morristown Missionaries at their 2013 Christmas Conference

Monday, December 16, 2013

December 16, 2013

Man, this past week was nuts!
What's going on my friends?  It has been a crazy couple of weeks and it's just leading into another crazy week.  There are so many great things goin on here in Tom's River.  Elder Walker and I have a blast!  The Zone had the opportunity to go up to the Manhattan Temple and that was so awesome!  To be able to be rejuvenated by the Spirit of God was the greatest thing in the world.  We actually got permission to borrow the mission van (a big ten seater poliga-bus) and cruise up to Manhattan.  We fit almost the entire Zone in that monster!  It was so much fun to be able to go up as a zone and talk and goof around a little in the bus!  Other than that, there is a whole lot of work going on here in the area.  We have been able to see so many amazing miracles that just reaffirm that God loves his children.  God is our Father.  We are His children.  It's a two-way relationship.  I unfortunately, only have half of a "P" day once again.  Due to a fireside practice that is two hours away.  :) 

I love y'all, keep it fresh out there!
Elder Rodeback

                                  Pictures are from last Christmas (2012)  I'll replace them when I get new ones.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

December 9, 2013

Hey Guys!

Man, this week was awesome!  It finally snowed yesterday and it finally melted today. :P  Boooooo!  I was lookin' forward to having the snow on the ground.  Elder Walker and I have been workin' our tails off (I am pretty sure I say that every week so let's shake things up) Elder Walker and I have been doin' mad work out here in Tom's River.  The people down here are amazing!  We started teaching this boy and he is awesome!  His dad is a member out in Utah.  He already knows everything about the church, he is just awesome!  We had Jingle with the Jeppson's which is where we go up to the mission home and have breakfast with President and Sister Jeppson.  Man, the devotional that they did after breakfast was so powerful.  To be able to hear the pure testimony of Jesus Christ from President was amazing!  Sorry this is so short this week.  I am low on time cuz we only get half of a "P" day today.....TEMPLE TRIP on TUESDAY!!!  YESSSS!

I love y'all, take care
Elder Rodeback

Monday, December 2, 2013

December 2, 2013 - Shiver Fits & Screaming Knuckles

Hey Guys!

It has been a crazy week after the transfer!  I got doubled into a new area.  Say Hello to the REAL Jersey Shore!  Can I get a YEAH BUDDDDDY?  haha!  Tom's River, y'all got the two Alpine boys ready to win!  My new companion is Elder Collin Walker from Alpine, Utah!  haha, I know ballin, shot callin!  We were in High School together and the ward gets a kick out of hearing about it.  Our ward is boss!  (almost as cool as Princeton 2nd)  We are super excited to get some hard core work done!  Last week was a mess!  One of our missionaries broke his collar bone during the Turkey Bowl.  That was a super big bummer.  Other than that, there was a lot of trying to meet people.  We were able to have dinner at the Bishop's house which was great because we got to meet him and his family and learn a little bit more about the ward.  Those are probably the two biggest highlights of the week.
This past week has been awesome for me because I have been able to ponder and think about the true nature of God, and more importantly the relationship that we have with our Heavenly Father.  If we could just more fully understand the two-way relationship that we have with Him, we would be better able to understand the purpose that we are in this temporary place.  God is our Father and WE are His children.  It goes both ways.

I love y'all.  Hope everything is stellar back West!  Keep Warm
Elder Rodeback

Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25, 2013

Hey there my Peeps!

Man, crazy times in this day in age.  I can't believe it is already Christmas time again!  It blows my mind!  Another crazy point is that transfers are here once again.  Unfortunately, I get the short end of the stick this time.  I am headed out of Hightstown.  I am so bummed!  I love this place so much.  I have grown to love so many of the families out here and I can't believe it is already time to say goodbye.  We had a ridiculous week last week moving into our new apartment.  We also did a bunch of service which included cleaning the Gruber's rain gutters.  I love the Gruber's so much, ah man.  Marissa got confirmed yesterday which was way cool.
I was watching this video that I just sent to my mom and I will have her post in on here, one way or another.  It's called "Jesus Heals a Man, Blind from Birth."  (see below)  I love the Bible video so much and to just watch this man.  He gains a testimony of Jesus Christ and he testifies and stands up to the big dog Pharisees and he just won't back down.  Then he finally finds Christ and is just so grateful.  I hope with all of my heart, that someday I can be like that man.  I hope more than anything that it will be me someday.  When I finally meet my Savior and my Heavenly Father once again, I hope the first thing they say to me is "thou good and faithful servant."  I just want all y'all to know my testimony and how much I love my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.  They mean everything to me.  There is a saying that has always been one to stick out.  "It is easier to die for Christ than to live for Him."  Because of that statement, I won't say I would die for him, but I will say that I will live every moment for him.  I know without a doubt in my mind, that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored and has, and will continue to change my life forever.  I love you all and I hope everything is going stellar!
Happy Thanksgiving!
Elder Rodeback

Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind

Monday, November 18, 2013

November 18, 2013


Wass up? Man, I got an email from my mom today about stayin warm and we are so lucky because right now it is literally almost 70 degrees!!!!  Shot CALLinG!  Man, this week has been so all over the place!  We moved into a new apartment and it is so nice!  We got two bathrooms!  We had an awesome day yesterday, Marissa got baptized!  The Spirit was so powerful!  Other than that the week was filled with mayhem, just straight chaos!  We don't have a whole lot of time today because we got to the library late and we have a ball game goin down at tooth hurty. *Say it really fast*  Hope y'all keep on keepin' on!  I love you and I swear I will write something better next week....I hope....

Elder Rodeback

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November 13, 2013

Imma Smack You!

Haha, How's is going everybody?  Hope y'all be enjoyin' November!  Cuz, we ARE!  Elder Vellinga and I have been havin' a blast!  It snowed yesterday!  Did any of it stick? No ma'am but it was nice to see it again!  We had one of the most ridiculous days yesterday, which ended with Elder Vellinga and I having to switch apartments with one of the Sister companionships.....it was nuts and we drove 112 miles yesterday....yup, WE ARE HOSED on mileage!  Anyway, Elder Vellinga and I had the boss opportunity to go to the temple with Tyler on Saturday.  Man that was the BOMB!  We had a blast!  The feeling of the Spirit was overpowering.  It was the most powerful experience in the world.  His parents talked us into eating a Sumo Burger at Nick's in Manhattan.  That stinker weighed a pound and it was awesome!  It provided all of the protein I will need for the next three days, so that was awesome.
The huge fiasco from yesterday has just left my brain fried so I will send a better update on Monday....it's only five days away, right?

Love y'all, take care!
Elder Rodeback

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

November 5, 2013

Well, Supp?

Haha Hey again!  Hope all y'all been doin' boss!  Man this week has been filled with amazing experiences!  We had interviews with President Jeppson last Thursday and guess what?  WE RAN OUTTA MILES ON OUR CAR!  So, we hopped on our bikes and rode 8 miles to the church.  Man it was such a fun ride!  We then cruised home and because of Halloween we hung around the apartment.  (President said that we had to be in by 6 the night before Halloween as well as the night of Halloween)  Then Sunday rolled around and was just the icing on the cake!  I love Fast and Testimony Sunday!
I have learned so much on my mission but lately I have felt as though I have plateaued and I hate that feeling.  I hate it when I feel like I am not becoming better.  I really don't like that "stand still" where nothing is changing.  I have been praying for a couple of weeks now, for a way to be able to bust into the next phase of my mission and really make my testimony EXPLODE!  We were at a meeting last week and one of the AP's talked about a talk that he called the "Purification Talk."  He said that it changed his view of everything and I knew that was the answer to my prayers.  I read it again this morning and I cannot even explain how excited I am to come even closer to God and to feel more fully, Him in my life.  I am working hard to remove all of the distractions so that I can focus entirely on this last 7 months of my mission.  WOW!  Did I just say 7 months!

I love ya'll!  Take Care
Elder Rodeback

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

October 29, 2013

Well, Sup?

It's been a pretty bomb week this week.  So much has been going on I can't believe it has already been almost four months since I came to Hightstown!  It doesn't even feel that long!  I don't even really know what to say this week haha.  I always talk about stuff that I have learned.  I just wanna say how important the tender mercies of the Spririt are to me.  Those subtle promptings that make all of the difference.  I know that God lives and that He is looking out for us.  I know that if we search him out, we can find him and we can come closer to him and his love.  There is nothing more peaceful to me than knowing that God loves me.  There is no greater feeling to me than to be able to look back and know, without a doubt, that I have been forgiven for EVERYTHING.  I know that Jesus Christ is not only the Son of God, but he is also the Redeemer of every single one of us.  I love him. I wanna be like him.  I don't wanna do dumb stuff anymore.  The Gospel has impacted and changed everything about my life and will continue to do it FOREVER!

I love you guys! Keep livin' the dream!
Elder Rodeback

Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013

Sup Guys?

Man last week was NUTS!  There was so many different things goin on, it was crazy!  There was Transfer Conference and District meeting and more training.  Man, it was just all over the place.  Elder Vellinga and I have been working hard, doing the best we can to be our absolute best.  I can't even describe how much my mission means to me.  My mission has been  one of the most sacred experiences that I have ever had!  There is nowhere I would rather be.  Not in Utah, not in Hawaii, NO WHERE BUT HERE!  Serving the Lord and doing the things that He needs me to do.  Not a whole lot of stuff to report on this week.  Just been living the dream.  I have been studying the New Testament a lot lately and to be able to see and understand more and more every day, the matchless power and authority of Jesus Christ, blows my mind every time I read it!  Man, I was reading today in Mathew 22 and the parables that Jesus uses to teach the Pharisees is just the bomb!  He throws down on authority and how they are sinners, I LOVE IT!

I love you guys.  I know that this is short, I'm sorry.
Elder Rodeback

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October 15, 2013

How's Things?
Hope y'all be living the dream out in Utah!!  I can't even tell you how much I love being a missionary!  It is literally the BEST thing EVER!  Elder Vellinga and I have been workin' hard!  I can't believe that transfers are here again!  On the bright side, Elder Vellinga and I have yet another transfer to work together!  BOOOOM!  He is becoming one of my best friends.  We just laugh and joke all the day long!  It's awesome because he is just like me and doesn't take garbage from anyone.  Every day, this area grows and grows on me.
Elder Vellinga and I had the opportunity to be part of the most spiritual baptism of my mission this past weekend.  Tyler was baptized!  Tyler is an autistic boy that we have been teaching.  He is the son of a fully active family and they decided that they wanted him to be baptized and that they wanted us to teach him.  The Spirit that was felt at his baptism was one that I have never experienced before.  It was so powerful and overwhelming.  I just cannot begin to describe it.  I can honestly say that Tyler and his family will forever be a part of my family.  They are literally the BOMB!
Well, I hope all of you are living the life of the disciples out in Utah. :)  Don't ever think that changing for God is bad.  Although the change may be hard and something you don't think you can do, with the strength of the Lord all things are possible.  Don't let anyone come in between your relationship with God.  It is absolutely the most important relationship that we will EVER have.  I love you guys!  Keep warm out there!

Elder Rodeback

Monday, October 7, 2013

October 7, 2013

Well, now that I have watched the Bible videos for a little bit, I can write my little update guy!

Man it has been super awesome out here other than the humidity.  We ended up having an Indian Summer this year, unlike all y'all out in Utah.  Conference brought an explosion of answers to questions that I have been hunting for.  I thought it was awesome how they threw DOWN on the law of chastity!  Elder Vellinga and I had been talking about how dumb people are for treating that so carelessly and thinking it is nothing.  Well, judging from how conference turned out I hope that everyone can tell that, IT IS A BIG DEAL!!!!  Elder Vellinga and I have been working hard and we have a blast doin' it! We are both super sarcastic and just kinda dumb, so we just FEED off of each other.  Hightstown is the best!  Our area is MASSIVE!  Just to give you an idea, our mileage limit on our car is 1,750 miles, if that tells you anything!  Well, my Friends I just gotta say that I know without a doubt in my mind that this church is true.  I know that if you go to General Conference with specific questions, you WILL get answers.  That is why we listen to these inspired men!  Not just to listen.  They have been called and given permission to teach us what we need to do in order to receive salvation.  THEY ARE INSPIRED!!!!  I mean, look at how many people in the world are breaking one of the most important commandments God has ever given us.  Then BAM, throw down in conference on how our entire purpose on earth is to have a FAMILY! God knows what we are struggling with.  He knows how to fix it.  I know that is the truth and if you do everything you can to seek his guidance AND are willing to act on the answer He give you, I know that he will answer you.  You ave to have the faith to accept a "no" answer sometimes as well.  Sometimes that is what is gonna come your way.  I know that if we are willing to do whatever Heavenly Father asks us, then we will be blessed and our life will change.  "seek ye first the kingdom of God."  Luke 12
I know that He loves all of us!
Elder Rodeback

Monday, September 30, 2013

September 30, 2013

Sup Peeps?

Well, Jersey life continues to be the beez neez!!!!  I love it out here!  Elder Vellinga and I just have a blast all of the time!  I know, it's been a minute since I wrote an update for the blog, time just continues to run short on p-day.  I hope e'erbody is stoked for confernce (yes, I meant to spell it that way....)  I am so stoked, it's going to be a blast to be able to hear the Prophet speak!  Just FYI, we walked into the library today and it wreaked of pot so if I go somewhere a little of the chain, I am justified.  :P  We have just been havin a blast out here.  I can't believe how much my testimony of God and The Gospel has changed in the time I have been out.  Everyday I see my testimony grow and become a little more embedded in my soul.  Just getting to live it and study it inside and out, all day everyday, just makes it so much more applicable to me.  Man, I learn so much it blows my mind!  It was really weird because two Sundays ago we were asked to bear our testimonies in Sacrament Meeting and I got up and I blanked!  All I could think about was my testimony of missionary work.....I was floored and had to do some eval on my life....I had to overhaul my testimony.  Just over the past week I have been able to see it change.  Guys, I don't know if y'all know this but, THIS IS REAL!  God is ALIVE and he knows us and cares for us.  He knows that I am a die hard snowboarder, that I love UFC.  He knows that I have a deep love of music and most importantly, He knows that I will follow him until the day I die!  3Nephi 5:13 "Behold I am a disciple of Jesus Christ the son of God.  I have been called of Him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life."  Until the day I die I will be not only his disciple, but his friend.  I love God, I love Jesus Christ.  I love that they know me and that I have the power to know them.  I know that God loves you and that Christ came to die for everyone who would ever walk this earth.
Back up or get in, it's fight night!
I love you guys!
Elder Rodeback

Monday, September 16, 2013

September 16, 2013

|||||||||||||||||||||| .-./  ..........................  Lawn Mower Saves the Day!

Sup my friends!

First things first, I LOVE YOU GUYS! :)  It has been a great week out here, filled with meetings and training!  I apologize in advance because my mom wrote me a letter with some questions she wanted answered and I left the letter at home.  So, I have no idea what her questions were.  Jersey is the place to be, I will say that much!  Especially Princeton 2nd Ward.  It is the BEST!  Elder Vellinga and I are loving the area and workin' our tails off.  There is just so much going on out here, it blows my mind.....not kidding, my brain is fried right now.  We have some great members out here and actually some of them are from Utah and to get even more specific, Alpine/Highland/Cedar Hills.  It is really the weirdest thing in the world.  I am just rambling right now haha, I am just mentally EXHAUSTED!
One of the biggest things that has stuck out to me the past little while is how important it is that we not be afraid of what we believe.  It was a huge lesson I learned up in Newark and it just continues to stick out everyday.  We had stake conference yesterday and we had the opportunity to hear President Jeppson (our mission president) speak.  Man, did he SPEAK!  He just threw down about missionary work and it was great.  He talked a lot about the doctrine of Christ and how no other church was correct.  Funny thing, an investigator that dropped us a couple of weeks ago because he had a struggle with coffee was at stake conference.  President Jeppson just threw down on how if you don't do what Christ commands us, you CANNOT enter the kingdom of Heaven.  Our investigator walked up to us after and said, "That guy has some fire and brimstone in him!"  We looked at him and said, "Yes he does my friend."  Boldness is the best way to go, PERIOD!  Just being honest with people would end so much turmoil in this world.
Well, I have gone on with my bad grammar and punctuation long enough......Check out some pictures.

Love you guys!
Elder Rodeback

                                                                      Our new pet!

Monday, September 9, 2013

September 9, 2013

Hey!  How we doin' ?
First off, MY ADDRESS IS NOT IN GARWOOD!  Man, mom you are getting worse than Grandma!  I have received two letters from her and a package at my address in Hightstown!  I am so stoked to be with Elder Vellinga!  We are super similar, both metal heads, both love anything involving a board and most important, both love our mission!  By the way, this is the update that I haven't sent in almost two weeks!  I AM SORRY!  We have been working our tails off and well, I am sorry for not having any excuses.  I am a horrible person, please forgive me.....Man, I love this part of Jersey.  It is so green and covered in trees!  Get this, I can actually hear crickets!  That hasn't been the case in a really long time.  For those of you who need my address, it is 118 Spring Crest Drive, Hightstown, NJ  08520.
The biggest thing that I have been learning the past couple of weeks is the importance of love.  It blows me away at how everything can change just by simply loving someone.  Let's hop into the scriptures a little bit. :)  In Matthew 16: 21-28 this is where Peter says that Jesus won't die and Jesus kind of rips on him.  I don't think he did it because he hated him, I think he did it because he loved Peter.  He looks at him and says,"if you lose your life for me, you will find it."  Christ also says, "Neither has the Son of man came into the world to be ministered unto, but to minister."  Christ didn't come so that people would love him and worship him.  He came into the world to minister, to teach.  He loved all of us so much that He gave up  his learning experience here on earth so that EVERY SINGLE one of God's children could return to their home.  I know that God loves every single soul in the entire world.  Some of the worst men and women in the world are still loved by Christ and by God.  He wants them back too!  I love you guys and I wanna say that God loves all of you as well.  Always remember that you have a Heavenly Father who will ALWAYS be there for you.  If there is something keeping you from feeling that love, FIX IT!  Get over it and FIX IT!  I love you guys, keep pushin and LIVIN the DREAM!
Elder Rodeback

                                                              Elder Hernandez's last day in New Jersey!

Monday, August 19, 2013

August 19, 2013

Hey Guys!
Man it has been a crazy week the past week!  We had to do three different exchanges.  It blew my mind!  We worked super hard though and I just can't believe it is already "P day".  My mom sent me an email today and asked how I got distracted in the video she posted last week.  I have absolutely zero recollection of that occurrence.  It was five transfers ago!  I can barely remember what happened last week!  So, moral of the story, just disregard that part.  I am kind of shocked that she put that video on the blog in the first place......
My testimony has changed and grown over the past little while.  I feel it change LITERALLY EVERYDAY!  The missionaries out here in the Dirty Jerz, have had a focus the past two months of the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ.  I love the Book of Mormon.  The converting, changing power that this Book carries, is REAL.  I know that this book is of God! I also know that he asked Nephi to write everything down so that when Joseph Smith needed a witness that he had seen God, it would be there.  Guys, does everyone understand???  THE BOOK OF MORMON IS WRITTEN FOR YOU TO KNOW THAT GOD LIVES AND THAT THE GOSPEL HAS BEEN RESTORED!  I know that if you read the book every single day, you will NEVER go less active and that your testimony will grow every single day.

I love you guys!  Keep on Keepin' on,
Elder Rodeback
                                                 Elder Corbridge, Elder Gittins, Elder Rodeback

Monday, August 5, 2013

August 5, 2013

Guys, What's UP?????

It has been another glorious week out here in New Jersey and an even better week serving in the Princeton 2nd Ward.  Man, again I have to say, it is the weirdest thing to serve in a Ward.  On top of that a Ward that is just like a Utah ward.  There are over two hundred active members in the Ward and I feel like I am in Utah!  I won't lie, the longer that I am in this area, the more I love it!  Still, it isn't the same as Spring Garden. :)  Elder Bell and I have been workin' our tails off the past two weeks.  Elder Bell is such an awesome missionary!  We had a meeting last week and when we stood up to talk, everyone laughed because he is 6'9" and I am 5'10".  Haha!  So, I was sitting in Sacrament Meeting yesterday and right after it was over, this sister walks up to me as says, "Did you go to Lone Peak High School?"  I told her that I did and she said, "So did I!  I graduated in 2010!"  I was like haha, um, WHAT????  It's a very small world!
I was doing a little study on faith today and man I was hit with the Spirit as I read Moroni 7.  In verses 24-27 there are so many precious truths about the power of faith.  It mentions how there are many diverse ways that our Heavenly Father blesses us and how he answers prayers in MANY DIFFERENT WAYS.  That impacted me so much just to see how much God loves his children.  How he knows us individually and that he can give us answers that are only recognizable to us.  Answers to our individual prayers.  The scripture also talks about faith and how we are saved by faith.  It poses a very meaningful question.  It says, "Have miracles ceased because Christ hath ascended into Heaven and hath sat down on the right hand of God, to claim of the Father his rights of mercy which he hath upon all the children of men?"  - Moroni 7:27  That is what missionaries are here to testify of.  THAT GOD STILL LOVES HIS CHILDREN.  That miracles haven't ceased.  The only time they will ever stop is if we lose faith in the power of God.  I know how much God loves each and every one of us.  I know that He lives and that the Church is ALIVE!  It is constantly changing and growing better as the world grows worse.  I just wanna bear testimony of how powerful the power of faith is among the children of men.  If we have faith in Christ, we can do what so ever thing is expedient in him - Moroni 7:33-34.  Our life here is just as short as a mission.  DON'T WASTE A SINGLE MOMENT!  Don't waste time, it is the WORST mistake you can ever make!

Love you guys!  Take care.
Elder Rodeback

Monday, July 29, 2013

July 29, 2013 - Hightstown, New Jersey!


Man, it has been a ridiculously crazy week!  I got transferred once again......still blows my mind!  I am now in Hightstown, serving in the Princeton Ward.  Man, I walked into church yesterday and was dumbfounded!  One, there was almost as many people in church as there was in the Utah wards, and two, it was JUST AS NOISY!  I was a little shocked in the beginning because I haven't been in a ward like this in over a year.  The people are AWESOME though and I am so excited to be able to serve in a super solid, family ward!!!!  My new companion is Elder Bell and I keep telling him that we are the goofiest companionship in the mission!  I am like 5'10" or 5'11" and Elder Bell is 6'9"!  He is almost a full foot taller than me!  It's hilarious.  WE have been working hard this week, living the dream of being missionaries.  Side note - his last companion was my BOY, ELDER HAFOKA!  HOLLA!  We will send pictures soon!
Last week I brought up a video that I had watched and we had the opportunity to use it while teaching a young man about the power of faith and prayer.  Needless to say, the Spirit flooded the room. Thanks again Sister Ricker, it was inspired!  It was amazing to be able to see that and not have a single doubt about God's Plan for ALL OF HIS CHILDREN.
I don't know how many of you have taken the challenge to use the prayer pattern, but each time I use it there is some bit of revelation that is given to me.  The Book of Mormon really does change lives.  It changes people, and the very nature of our souls.  AHHH I can't even describe the power that this Book, this Divinely written Book, contains.
Something that I have really been learning about is the importance of family.  Don't get me wrong, I love my family dearly, but the thing that I did not take advantage of as much as I should have, was BEING family.  I learn and see everyday how much different peoples lives could be if they would simply do things as a family.  Even just reading the Book of Mormon and saying family prayer will drastically change everything.
You guys ROCK!  Thanks for all of the support!  I LOVE YOU!

Elder Rodeback

                                                                  Elder Gittins is going home!
                                                                                        Bubble guns!

Monday, July 22, 2013

July 21, 2013

Friends, Family.......SUPPPPPPPP?

It has been a straight up glorious week out here!  Every time people ask me what it is like to be a missionary, I tell them, "It is the best thing in the ENTIRE world and I would not trade this experience for ANYTHING!"  Amazingly, it is transfers again and AGAIN, I am being transferred!  I swear that I just got to Scotch Plains and I am now leaving.  I don't know where I am going yet, but I will find out soon!  I received a call from President Jeppson last night and I have been called as a Zone Leader!
We had some awesome things happen and I know that it was all based on the Lord.  If you pray for miracles, miracles will come.  Just look for them.  We have to look for the answers to our prayers.  We can't just sit on our rear and expect God to send us some random blessing because we are lazy and don't do anything.
I wanna just bear my testimony on how the Lord provides a way for ALL THINGS.  Christ said, "if ye will have faith in me, ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me."  If we have faith in Christ we can overcome the world.  I know that to be true.  I know that by going out and doing, we receive miracles.  We are blessed with power. My mom suggested that I watch a video on lds.org today called "Endure with Faith".  I can't even tell you how much that strengthened my testimony.  It also made me cry a little bit, but my pride will just say it was allergies. ;)   Brother and Sister Ricker, you are a perfect example of courage and faith.
Every day, we are at war.  Every single day, we enter the war zone.  WE NEED TO GET UP AND FIGHT EVERYDAY.  When your feet hit the floor, Satan had better be screaming in misery because he knows that you are up and he isn't going to win!  I know that with God on our side we can do all things!  Let's do this!

Love you,
Elder Rodeback

Also, every one get on the Bible videos on LDS.org and watch the "Peter and John Continue Preaching" and look at the way Peter reacts throughout the video.  Peter is my hero and I want to be able to bear witness of Christ just like he does.  He knew it was war and he FOUGHT!  Back up, or get in!!!

Monday, July 15, 2013

July 15, 2013


It has been another glorious week here in the Dirty Jerz and man it has been straight up WET!  It rains almost every day.  It has been so crazy!  I wouldn't be surprised if we are hit again with another hurricane.  Elder Corbridge and I have been working hard together, trying to be the best missionaries we can.  We have this investigator named Brother Loyo who we have been trying to get baptized.  It has been a process!  HaHa! He is awesome and knows everything is true, he just won't come to church!  We had an awesome experience while on exchanges last week where we found a man that had been taught by missionaries for TWO AND A HALF YEARS!  Is that ridiculous or what?????  He lives with his daughter here in Scotch Plains now and he is amazing.  We taught him about baptism and he was very reluctant at first but by the end of the lesson he committed to get baptized.  He is one of the prepared.  All I can say is, "I LOVE MISSIONARY WORK!"  The biggest way that missionary work has helped me is that I am learning to internalize the doctrines and they are becoming a part of who I am.  It is amazing what the Book of Mormon can do!  The Book of Mormon is the key to EVERYTHING!  If the Book is not true, then every single thing that we believe is wrong.  If it is true, then God the Father and Jesus Christ really did show themselves to Joseph Smith.  I honestly cannot describe the love that I have for the Book of Mormon.  READ THE BOOK OF MORMON EVERYDAY!!!  Give it five minutes and it will give you happiness all day!  That's all I have time for today guys.  Sorry I missed last week.  TOO MUCH stuff going on.  Also, SISTER TAYLOR JEFFERY, if you are reading this blog, CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR MISSION CALL!!!!!!!  WHOOP WHOOP HOLLLLLLA!!!!  You are gonna rock the house down in Mexico!

Love you guys!
Elder Rodeback

Here is a study pattern to use when you read the Book of Mormon.  It rocks!
Pray, Read, Write, Pray, Read, Write, Pray
Pray about a question or something you want to know
Read in the Scriptures
Write down impressions and things that stick out to you
Pray and confirm what you have been taught is true, and thank God for it
Read some more
Write some more
Pray and confirm some more

Monday, July 1, 2013

July 1, 2013

Hey my Peeeeps!  Wass up, wass up????

It has been another glorious week here in the NJMM.  HOLLA ATCHA BOIIIII!!!  We had a whole lotta fun last week at the All Mission cOnFeReNcE!  We played some sweet games, did skits that were ridiculously hilarious.  Big props to my boy Elder Hernandez for putting down a zombie apocalypse missionary skit!  LOL! It was sweet!  Then we had the wonderful opportunity to hear from the Manhattan Temple President and man, did he share some pretty sweet stuff about the temple.  Elder Gittins and I went on exchanges!  (Yes, Elder Gittins and I have been reunited and we are lovin it!)  We were able to have a pretty productive day which ended with us throwing together a mission plan that we are hoping is going to change the missionary work in the Scotch Plains 2nd Ward forever.  We ran out of miles on our car last week so we had to go back to walking, and man did it feel GOOD!  I absolutely love the walking areas!  You have the opportunity to talk to so many people.  It is THE BEST!
Something I have learned in the last week is something super important.  My testimony was strengthened on when we put God and his will first, ALL things are possible.  I was reading in Alma 2 & 3 and man, they are some powerful scriptures.  In that section of Alma, it talks about Amlici and how he wanted to take away the liberty of the people and be a King like Noah or like Nehor.  So, he gathers up his followers and rebels against the Nephites and eventually it comes to a point where Alma and Amlici are fighting.  It gets to the point where Alma says something very profound, "Alma cried out, Lord have mercy on my soul that I may continue to be a tool in thy hands and preserve this people."  That is the part that really struck me.  He doesn't ask the Lord to save him so that he can do more of the things he wanted to do.  He asked the Lord to save him so that he could be a tool in the Lord's hands and serve his people.  He knew that if he had died that the people of Nephi would have fallen and would have been slain.  He wanted to live for their sake, not his own.  He truly sought God's will.  Our first and main priority should be to seek His will.  Not only that, but to improve our relationship with him.  Those two things should always take priority over anything.  I know and can promise EVERYONE that as we put these two things first, our entire lives will change DRASTICALLY!  As is says in Malachi 2 "Prove me now here with."  I DARE YOU TO PROVE ME WRONG!
I love you guys!  Keep it frosty out there!
Elder Rodeback

Please do your missionary work!  Do your hometeaching.  Go on team-ups with the Elders and Sisters ALOT!!!!  And invite them over for dinner with a non member or less active member!!!  PLEASE!!!!!

                                                     Elder Velazquez's Farewell (next to Elder Rodeback in the white shirt)
                                                             Saying good-bye to  Brother Edmond Nzapa-Yeke
                                                                        Saying good-bye to Sister Sartore
                                                                              Manhattan Temple Trip
                                                           Burning the countdown calendar my mom sent - 1 YEAR!
                                                                                        All Mission Conference

Monday, June 17, 2013

June 17, 2013 - Transferred to Scotch Plains!

People of the West!  Gather round and lend me your ears!

First off, I have to say, I don't understand why, but every email I got today made me cry!!!  (thanks mama)  I started reading the letter I got from her last week talking about Dyl Weed's Birthday.  It just sunk in that he is 15.  It just blows me away at how much has happened in the couple of months I have been out.  (Side note from mom.....IN 10 DAYS IT WILL BE A YEAR!)   Then I read Dad's email about my other Grandpa's Birthday and I remembered being there last year!  Then Mama emailed me AGAIN and talked about Dylan getting his Patriarchal Blessing and I was like WHAT??????  It's crazy!
Well, I am sure that Mom told everyone where I am.  Scotch Plains is pretty boss, I am not gonna lie.  North Newark will always be No. 1 though. :)  We had a baptism on Saturday which was pretty BOSS!  I had only taught her once, but there is just something about being part of a blessing.  ESPECIALLY when it is a part member family.  Her name is Sofia and she is 9 years old.  She was so excited that she only slept for 2 hours the night before.  It was an awesome day!
Man, there was so many AWESOME things that happened last week and so many things that I learned.  The biggest thing that I learned that stuck out to me was this, GOD CHASTENS THE RIGHTEOUS!  I was thinking to myself last week, "Why do I gotta leave?  Why can't I just serve my entire mission in North Newark?"  Obviously, I accepted God's will.  It wasn't until today that I read something that made it all click.  In Mosiah 23, there is a verse that says the Lord chastens his people to try their faith and strengthen them.  Then I remembered the "God's Will" video.  "I am the gardener here.  I know what I want you to be."  I realized that and was like, "That's it, I am done.  No more will I question ANYTHING.  I will go where you want me to go."  I know that things don't really work out the way we want them to all of the time, but it is for our own good.
Back in Newark, there was an awesome experience that helped out a dear friend of mine.  This person lost their phone and really could not find it ANYWHERE!  I looked at them and asked, "Have you prayed yet?" When they answered no, I told them to go pray.  They then dropped to their knees, in the middle of the hall and prayed.  The phone was found within 5 minutes.  I know that as we show faith and love for God, miracles happen!

Be safe guys!
Love you!
Elder Rodeback

Monday, June 10, 2013

June 10, 2013 - TRANSFERRED!

Bon Dia!  (Bone-JEE-UH)  todo bein voce? (toodoo-bane voe-se)

WASS UP????  It has been a glorious week out here in North Newark and I am SAD to say, it will be my last week here in North Newark.  That's right, I have been transferred once again.  NOOOOOOOO!  I am super bummed to be heading out, but excited to be headin' to a new place to be able to learn and grow some more.  We had an awesome week last week.  We worked our tails off and got some work done!  Had a lot of less actives at church yesterday.  Also, Elder Thatcher will be follow-up training Elder McEwan.  He is super stoked and I am excited for him.  We continue to try and see Sister Estevez, but to no avail. Hopefully we can find her soon.
I learned some really cool stuff this week.  I had a really awesome experience yesterday that strengthened my testimony of prayer.  I was really down yesterday.  I have known for a little while that I would be leaving this transfer and it finally hit me yesterday.  All day I had been saying a prayer that some how, some way, I could stay and be comforted.  At about six o'clock yesterday, I had just finished saying one of these little prayers in my mind and all of the sudden a song popped into my mind.  It's a song from "The Works" and the lyrics go, "Children go where I send thee."  Right then I knew it was from Heavenly Father.  I knew that He was aware of me and even though I want to stay with every ounce of my heart, this time is not about me.  I realized that God has a place prepared for me.  He has a way for me to go that I need to follow and it's up to me to do that.  I know that will all of my heart, He hears and loves us.  He wants what is best for us, and like that country song goes, "sometimes the answer is no."

Love you all!
Elder Rodeback

Monday, June 3, 2013

June 3, 2013

Guys SUP????????????????

There is nothing worse than getting Strep Throat......HATE IT!  There was a dumb rain storm last week and I didn't wear a coat cuz it was warm and now, here we are!  I worked through it as best I could but yesterday it slapped me in the face HARD!  We have been seeing some amazing stuff happen in our area the past month.  I know that it is all because of the hard work we are throwin' down.  We had some of the less active people we have been working with show up which was pretty awesome.  We have really been trying to get them there.  Now we just have one family that needs to quit being so lazy! hahaha!
This past week has just straight up been hotter than Hades!  The second I walk out the door I am DRENCHED!  It is just ridiculous!
The biggest lesson I have learned this week is how a love for God changes us as human beings.  President Boyd K. Packer taught "True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior.  The study of the doctrines of the Gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior."  Even though I have probably used this quote before, I continue to climb mountains and change my life with it.  A love for God brings a stronger desire to learn doctrine and learn the Gospel.  Just as that quote says, learning and using Gospel principles will change behavior faster than studying behavior.  A huge lesson that I have learned is that if we want to change our lives and feel God's presence more fully in our lives, study the Gospel.  Learn what God has done for you and then apply what you learn.  It is easy for us to change behavior, but pretty soon the old behavior comes back.  The only person that can truly change our nature is God and I know that comes by simply learning and applying Gospel principles.

Alright guys, peace out.....gotta run!

Love you guys,
Elder Rodeback