Jordan's Mission Apartments

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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Two New Videos!!

The package that Jordan sent to Whitney finally arrived. Jordan sent home his second photo card, which included several videos. For those who like to hear Jordan talk and laugh, this is for you!

I know all about the letters. How do you think I know? She told me, that's how I found out!

dear family,

i was so pumped to find out that whitney's package got there! that thing cost me a bloody arm and a leg to send. just kidding, but the mini patrick thing was way sweet. i'm so glad it got there. those pictures are amazing. i was really bummed when i heard that you hadn't gotten them. there are a lot of good memories there.

it's also good to hear that mom is doing better. just take it easy, injuries take a while to recover from. i would know =). but hang in there mom, you'll be doing hand springs again before you know it.

i got a package from ya'll this week. the doctor scholls are HEAVENLY. i wept when i opened the package and saw them in there... and then i took them out and saw the jerky and started to ball. good work, it was an excellent package.

so this week has been really good. we had nine investigators at church... but we should've had at least fifteen. my goal before i leave this branch is to have at least twenty. there is a companionship in east malaysia that had 34 investigators at church last week. i can't even imagine that! that's nuts. but twenty is definitely a possibility. so elder daines went home this week =( it's a shame that missionaries have to die. he's such a stud. but elder houston became the new assistant, so KL is getting a new zone leader. his name is elder richards, but i don't know him. all i know is that he's in elder palfreyman's group. that should be exciting.

there is some more transfers coming up soon. fortunately for me though, they are chinese transfers. the chinese elders are on a different transfer cycle. elder foster (our district leader) seems to think he's getting transferred. if that happens, there will be some more changes to our district. we'll just have to wait and see.

as far as the work goes, we've been focusing a lot on getting referrals from people. there are many ways to go about doing this, but the easiest is just to ask. so for the last couple of days we've been asking everyone we talk to for friends that might be interested (something that we should've been doing all along) and the result has been amazing. in the last two days we've already received more referrals than all of last week combined! so awesome! so now what we need to do is put that into practice with our members. we've coordinated with our branch mission leader to go visit a member family every week, starting with his this week. we'll go over there and teach them how to teach the restoration. imagine how effective we could be if we had an entire branch full of missionaries. that's our goal. we'll be challenging every person in the branch (probably only excluding the primary and nursery) to find a friend or someone to give a book of mormon to and refer to us. that way those people already have fellowshippers and a reason to come to church. all of these things are really obvious and are being practiced most places by members of the church... except for here. it's really weird how much culture interferes. people have a lot of trouble giving up the traditions of their fathers and come into god's culture, but that's what has to be done here. the church has been here for 20+ years, but it acts like it's only been here for 2 or 3. the youth of the church is amazing though. once they grow up and become the leaders of the church, that's when things will really start to catch fire.

we've been teaching a ton of nigerians lately. they are so hilarious. they hate it here though. i haven't met a single nigerian that likes malaysia. we're teaching three of them tonight. one is already on date and we will hopefully be setting a baptism date for another one tonight.

the work is so amazing here. i love it so much. i had an interesting bit of revelation last night. i felt like i needed to tell you all to pray for missionary experiences. maybe you could make that your purpose of your fast this upcoming fast sunday. everyone needs to do it, and when the opportunity comes, have the courage to open your mouths. remember elder bednar's talk last conference (or maybe the one before, i can't remember) when he said that members are full-time finders, missionaries are full time teachers. that applies to all of us and we need to do more of it. look for those opportunities, and they'll come.

anywho, i'm starving and pizza hut is calling my name, so until next week, adieu.

elder troxel

Monday, July 21, 2008

Isn't that a smelly kind of cheese?

dear family,

how is everybody? i'm sorry to know that mom's knees aren't doing to hot. that schmells. i'd give you both of mine in a heartbeat if i could, mom. today and tomorrow is zone conference. we had an excellent role play with the assistants this morning and i had a good interview with president skelton early this afternoon. he just asked me how training was going and we chit-chatted a little bit. he said that we were going to have an intense training tomorrow. he's really been pushing us to have more baptisms because they have been extremely low throughout the mission lately. we have to set for august 9th, but after that we don't really have anybody who is really going to make their date =(

this week was amazing! it was the by far the best week (as far as numbers go) of my mission. we have things called "key indicators" that we tally up at the end of the week and report to the district leader at the end of every week. these things include lessons taught to investigators with a member present (president skelton set the zone standard at 8 weekly), other lessons (i think 25 is the zone standard), referrals received and contacted (zero received and 10 contacted ZS), new investigators (10 ZS), and lessons taught to/with recent converts/less active members (7 or 8 is the ZS). we also set our own goals for every week in addition to the zone standards and we always set our goals fairly high so that they will push us. i've never had a week when we've met all of our goals... until this one. we didn't just meet them, we absolutely blew them out of the water! we had 16 member present lessons, 39 other lessons, 10 contacted referrals, 20 new investigators, and 12 recent convert/less active lessons. to add to that, we had 10 investigators come to sacrament meeting! how did we do it? MEMBERS. we had a member at almost every appointment this week. i don't really know how the others got so high, but when you get a lot of member present lessons, everything improves. it's amazing. it took a lot of prayer and work, but we finally are seeing a fire for the missionary work with our members.

so how's everybody else doing? how's tj and kimberly's little one coming along? is kimberly big? send me some pictures of her. i bet my belly is bigger than hers. i really am getting so fat! i wasn't able to do morning exercises friday, saturday, or sunday! so i did some hard core running and 6:15 this morning to make up for it. i really am thinking that i wanna try and play ball somewhere when i get back.

the language is slowly coming along. i don't get to speak it very often, because whenever you speak malay to anyone hear, they always answer you in english. my speaking is getting pretty decent, but on the rare occasion that somebody does respond in malay, i can't understand hardly anything. i love west malaysia though and i wouldn't mind at all if i spent my whole mission here. (knock on wood).

so i saw a preview for batman... awesome! as elder vanpelt from 'the best two years' said, "this is trunking me out of my mind!" i can't wait to see that movie. i also saw a preview for hellboy 2 (which also looks sweet) and some movie called hancock with will smith. let me know how those are. i can get them here on dvd for like two ringgit if you want them. they've been selling them here in the street markets for weeks now. there's a lot of bootleggers here.

tell whitney i am so sorry her package didn't get there. tell her not to worry though; i punched one of the mail men in the face for her. well, physically i didn't, but it's the thought that counts right?anywho, hang in there mom. i'll be praying especially for you in the upcoming weeks. tell everyone i say hello.

love,Elder troxel

ps. my visa run is on the 5th of august, so if you have anything else you want to send to me, that needs to be done ASAP. (beef jerky)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

"He tried to flush her, but she floated back up!"

Dear family,

this week's emails were epic. i haven't heard from beau in about a month and a half, so i had no idea that there is a little mini me running around ghana!!! that is so funny. chelsie's email was really funny too. i knew that it would be an amazing experience for her, but it would also be extremely difficult. she's doing well though.

as far as the work goes this week, it's been a little bit rough. we had a huge teaching pool, but no body was progressing and so Elder Kartchner and i did some serious weeding and ended up dropping 12 people. it's really hard when you do all that you possibly can to help people receive a witness, but they use their agency not to. someday, hopefully, they will. Since we had to drop so many people, we've been doing a lot of finding... with little success. on monday we spent almost the whole day out gate knocking in the million+ degree weather. we taught a ton of people, but how many of them turned out to be new investigators?? KOSONG (zero)! it was a rough day. but we had an amazing training by the zone leaders yesterday about how we need to work smarter, and i realized that's what i've been lacking as a missionary. i work my buns off, but it's a lot more important to work smart. we need to use a lot more members in the work! so we've started doing something new. we are calling members every night and challenging them to give a one referral in the next two weeks. we'll also be setting up one night a week to go over to member's houses (we NEVER get invited over to members houses here) and teach them how to teach. i don't care if we have to bring a bloody battering ram, but we are going to get into these members' houses and get the work going here.

training is a bit more difficult than i thought. elder kartchner is definitely not elder palfreyman; we don't have all that much in common. but everything is going well and he is progressing a lot. it's really cool to see his my style of teaching reflected in his teaching. he's going to be really good.

so, if you could possibly send some insoles in your next package, that would be fantastic. my feet haven't stopped killing me since day one. that can't be good. you'd think that they would just buck-up and get used to the beating, but they haven't. i wake up every morning and get white flashes of pain when i stand up. i can deal with it fine, but some Dr. Scholls would be heaven.

that's crazy about the whole russia thing. it sounds a lot like what's going on here. hopefully they don't start making us go back to the states to renew our visas...tell whitney i'm really sorry she didn't get her package. that thing was so sweet =( and it cost me a bloody arm and a leg to send it too. the malaysian post is the bane of my existance! i've only gotten about half of the stuff that's been sent to me. i did get both packages that you sent though. i'm much enjoying the beef jerky and i think i'll have enough deodorant to last through the millennium. thank you muchly.

Emily smith is getting married. i'm sure all the men in provo will be wearing black for weeks. but it's to kelly bills, so no complaint there. he's a stud.

i can't really think of anything else. oh yeah, zone conference is next week so pday will be on monday (that's sunday there) so if you could get the emails off on saturday, that would probably be best.

i love you all. tell everyone hello for me. stay safe.

Elder Troxel

Monday, July 14, 2008

Jordan Trox Niiana

Well we don't normally post emails from Jordan's friends, but this story was interesting enough to list. Jordan's good friend Beau Healey is serving in Ghana, off the West coast of Africa. Beau sent this story home to his parents and they forwarded it to us.

The following are Beau's words:

"I don't know if I have told this story yet, so here goes. As you can see in this picture there is a tiny tiny little guy. This is Abigail Shamo, from Teshie, she is the one that I have known for a long time. I couldn't even tell that she was pregnant at first, and then a few weeks before I left she had this cute little baby boy. They wait a little while to have a naming party and it just so happened the party was the Monday after I left, so she asked what the name should be and I said Jordan, to honor my great friend, then I said his last name and we call him Trox, later when I came back, I realized that they actually decided to use not only Jordan but Trox. So this tiny little baby, who I was almost like a father to, but of course not really, because the father didn't even see her very much at all, his name is Jordan Trox Niiana, actually I will need to find out the rest of the name but there is now another Jordan Trox and he is here in Ghana. Trox if you are seeing this I hope you don't mind. "

Attached are a couple of pictures of Jordan's name sake.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Hutu Uprising is Over, Over!

Dear family,

this week was nuts! elder palfreyman left on thursday morning for Bintulu (yes mom, that is in east malaysia and they only speak malay and ibon there. EP doesn't speak either! just kidding, he speaks a little malay). it was bitter sweet to see him go. bitter because we worked so well together and got to be really good friends, but sweet because i'm training! i spent the rest of the day with elder plant from ipoh. he was here waiting for his greenie to fly in also, so he came with me thursday and we went to the airport together on friday morning. the new elders were supposed to fly into KL at 10:30 and take the KLIA express train to KL sentral where we would meet them at about 11:30. so there we waited at KL sentral...12:30...1:30... no elders. so i called the assistants in singapore and asked if there was some mix up or something. nope, they'd flown out of singapore at 9:30 as planned, so they were either lost or dead. poop. they told us to wait for another hour and then call them back...3:00... no elders. i called elder daines back and he told me that they were still at the airport and that the zone leaders would go pick them up and bring them to KL sentral. i don't know why they didn't just tell the new elders how to take the express train, because the zone leaders didn't even get to KL sentral until about 4:30 and then they had to take the train to KLIA (30 minute ride), find them, and then bring them back to KLS. crazy! we didn't get out of there until almost 7:00! i ate A LOT of mcdonalds and dunkin doughnuts that day. but they finally made it and everything was ok. my companion's name is elder Kartchner from St. David, Arizona. if you've never heard of St. David, don't feel bad. he only had 480 people in his school (K-12). he's a cowboy and is pretty big into country music... and can you say CULTURE SHOCK? he didn't hardly say a single word the first two days we were together. he's a very quiet guy... and i am not. he's started to be more social the last couple of days though. he's a good teacher. i made him teach me all of lesson one by himself during companion study today and he did really well. training is awesome.

other than training, not very much has happened. we're still teaching a ton of people and i love it! second day elder K and i were together (his first full day) we taught 13 lessons and got 7 new investigators. that's not too shabby. the work is going well here and i am very fortunate to be a part of something this amazing.

i got a hilarious email from chelsie today. she's in Nepal now and emailed me about how strange nepal is. she said it's really dirty and cars don't stop for people, the buildings and old and nasty and it wreaks. HAHAHA! welcome to malaysia chels! oh man, it made me so happy to hear that. you honestly can't know what it's like until you've experienced it. i love malaysia. at first i thought it was absolutely vile, bit it's really grown on me the five months (almost) that i've been here. i hope i get the chance to go to east malaysia eventually. i hear it's very different from here.

i'm doing extremely well and am well provided for. thanks everyone for the prayers. pray for all the missionaries everywhere to be able to find people. there's so many people that need to hear the gospel. it's a never-ending task! there are so many people! no matter how many people you talk to, you never run out! and everyone needs to hear it! it can get pretty daunting sometimes, but continue to pray for people everywhere to be able to find the missionaries... and don't be afraid to open YOUR mouths either. it's amazing.

send my love to everyone. be safe. tell TJ seven stitches in a chin is sissy compared to a shattered and profusely bleeding nose. just look at the picture in the album.

Love,Elder Troxel

PS: i forgot to ask if whitney got the package i sent her. i sure hope so, because it was awesome... and it has my SD card in it. have you sent me my first one back yet? because i haven't gotten it... and i've received both packages you sent

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end!

dear family,

this week has been so helter skelter. EP can't believe he's leaving tomorrow. that is pretty weird. four months has gone by so fast. what's even crazier is that i'll have been on my mission for six months come august 6th!!! whoa. turns out that you are supposed to burn a tie at your six month mark, a shirt at your year mark, slacks at your 18 month mark, and your whole suit at two years... i've already got my tie picked out =)

so i didn't get any email from you this week, but no worries. you went a long time without missing a week. elder pace has only gotten a couple emails from home the whole time he's been out, so i'm really lucky. hopefully i'll get an uber-email next week to make up for it. i got one from scott and he gave me some good advice about training. in speaking of training, my new companion gets in on friday! i've done a bit of digging to find out a little bit about who he is and some things about him and this is what i've found: his name might be elder Kartchner and he should be arriving in KL sometime on friday. yeah, they don't really tell us much here... so the plan for the rest of the week is that EP will pack today, elder Plant (from Ipoh) will come stay with us tonight while he waits for his greenie to fly in, and we all will go to KL sentral tomorrow to drop off EP. Elder Plant will then be my companion for the rest of the day and we will head back to KL Sentral (yes, central is spelled with an "S" here, it's not a typo) friday to pick up our companions! then we get back to work.

We're having a baptism interview tonight for a guy from nepal named Dev. he's been on date before, but didn't show up for his baptism... we've resolved his concerns now and hopefully this time will be a little bit better. we set four more baptism dates last night and that brings the grand total to 15 people on date. of those 15 people, 9 of those are for july. of those nine though, probably only 5 will actually make it. it should be a really busy month.

WEEKLY REVELATION: this one has 2 parts: 1-even though roasted marshmallows are delicious, roasting them on a butter knife over the stove probably isn't the best idea. 2-no matter how delicious the mallow remnants look on the knife after you eat the roasted marshmallow, you must remember that the knife is still scolding hot. it really put a damper on the rest of my day, i'll tell you that much. it's not very fun to eat anything when you've got the shape of a knife burned into your tongue. not even Mcdonalds sunday cones taste good!

so missions really do funny things to your mind. i can't even believe how much i've learned, but i've also forgotten a lot. if you could send me a list of everyone's birthdays and how old everybody is, that would be great. little things like that seem to have slipped my memory and been replaced with other things... but seriously, a birthday list is a necessity.

also, i think i'm losing the arch in my feet. they kinda hurt...the work continues here in Malaysia. everything is wonderful. i'm in good hands and working my buns off. and despite my best efforts and working out twice daily, i'm still fat =(

i love you all. be safe.
elder troxel

Mission Field Pictures