Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Week 2 in the MTC August 26, 2014

Family and Friends!!
How is everyone?! I hope all is well with everyone and that you all had an incredible week!
Things in the CCM are sooooo awesome! I have adapted to the schedule and all for the most part! My companion is so LEGIT! He is honestly such a stud! One of my number one homies here in the CCM is Elder W though! He is the funniest guy out there...and he he is literally a celebrity! No joke! He likes 1D, Ed Sheeran, and we talk about anything and everything! We are the same person! You would not believe what he did for me...I told him how much I was missing my 'Ville homies and I told him about the gallon challenge and drinking Orange HiC until we threw up and he instantly turned on the eye of the tiger. He went to the Sandwich bar and threw down THREE Nutella & Peanut butter Sandwiches and drank 6 full cups of orange juice...and all of that on top of the meal he had just ate! He threw up for an hour strait...among other things as well that I will not describe in this email! ;) He said it was all worth it though...anyways...like I said...we are the same person! Our District is so tight! We have two Hermanas (Sisters) who I call Hermamas because they are basically my mothers. They make sure I am on time to everything and they help all of us knuckleheads out with Spanish quite a bit! AND...Hermama Wing has literally put me in time out on more than one occasion. She is harsher than my own mother! ;) HAHA! 
The language is coming along alright...I can understand for the most part but speaking on the spot is pretty challenging. I have full faith that it will come though. We taught an investigator yesterday and Elder S and I went in with basically nothing and were able to communicate through the spirit with this man! It was such a tender mercy from our Heavenly Father. I have been writing a ´´MIRACLE OF THE DAY´´ each night in my journal and it is one of the hardest things of the day because of how hard it is to narrow it down to just one. The Lord blesses His missionaries, and all of God´s hijos!
Our Casa is a party! There are five rooms to a casa and two bunk beds in each room with a bathroom in each room as well. Elder S and I are the only ones in our room which is nice because of the extra space for everything but Elder W comes over to our room to have sleepovers sometimes! Haha! I woke up the other morning with bed bug bites, or spider bides, or something, ALL OVER ME! Kinda freaky to know that I am sharing a bed with creepy crawlies...but I guess it is a blessing to be able to feed the sheep of the Lord as well as feed the Insects of Mexico! ;) HAHA! One of my favorite experiences this week was Sacrament...in ALL SPANISH! Even the blessing of the bread and water! We have sacrament meeting as a zone in this little tiny room. It gets sooo hot so we have to open the windows and during the meeting it was hard to focus because just across the street there was a Rihanna song blasting!
The sacrament prayer sounded a little like this...
Oh, Dios
We found love in a hopeless place,
HAHAH! I almost lost it! Anways...I am loving it here and every day is a new adventure! 
I see Elder J and O ALL the time! It is so cool!
And Elder P and L just got here the other day! Springville is taking over the CCM! I saw Elder T too from Mapleton! He is the biggest stud!
Here is the spiritual message for the week:
Let´s just start out by saying that it has been a tough week. I am not going to lie to everyone and say that this work is easy! HAHA! Friday was nuts. The schedule was and still is crazy, my mind was blown, I could not understand my teachers, all I have eaten for the past 2 weeks has been beans and rice, and I had spider bites all over me! Quite the life, right? ;) Well on Friday I had a change of heart. We had just finished our third, 2 hour class with Hermano Carmona and my brain was fried. I was more stressed out than I have ever been. Just when I thought things could not get any worse...it started to POOR rain. It rains everyday here in Mexico but not like this. I have NEVER been in a storm like this! The streets were flooded instantly and the water was literally up to my ankles, not to mention I was the only one without an umbrella! :/ I dropped my shoulders in disappointment and lowered my head in hopes to at least to keep my face dry and while doing so...my heart was touched by the little black name tag on my heart with the words that translate directly to
´´Elder Noll
The Church of 
of Latter Day Saints´´
It that split second...time seemed to stand still. I am reminded of a group of Apostles...mind blown, heartbroken, confused, happy, and on top of all that...they have caught 0 fish. Elder Holland explains this account very well so a little bit of what I have to say comes from his General Conference talk ´´Do You Love Me?´´ Three of the Apostles, with Peter as the Senior Apostle, I would guess are somewhat shattered. Their Master Teacher, our Savior & Redeemer, has fulfilled the Atonement, been crucified & Resurrected, and is going to be exalted once again with Our Father in Heaven, and these Disciples are at a loss as to what to do without the savior guiding them. I guess in their sorrowed minds they thought it would be best to return to the sea, where the Savior had found them before...and fish. After a while at sea, and no fish, Peter sees a man on the shore and he tells the fishermen to cast their nets on the right side of the boat. Following the counsel of the man, the Apostles are not capable of even pulling in the amount of fish. By that time, they all come to the realization that the Savior has returned to them. Overjoyed, these fishermen get to the shore as fast as they can to reunite with their Master, who is the only reason for the 153 fish eventually accounted for. I am sure, after conversing for a little while, The Savior asks the Senior Apostle,
´´Peter, do you love ME more than you love all of THIS?´´
Peter responds, ´´Yea Lord, thou knowest that I love thee.´´
For a second time & probably a little bit more intensely, the Savior asks,
´´Peter, do you LOVE me?´´
Most likely a little confused he responds,
´´Yea Lord, I love thee.´´
I would assume that Peter is feeling a bit insecure and timed by now. But he responds with the same answer,
´´Yea Lord, Thou knowest that I love thee.´´
´´Peter. Then what are you doing here homie?! When I asked you to be an Apostle I asked you to be an Apostle for forever. Just because my earthly ministry has ended did you think that my Gospel ended with it? Did you suppose that you could just return to your previous ways? I need Disciples. Forever. Disciples who are going to throw their nets & fish aside. Disciples who will save my lambs and feed my sheep. Disciples who will defend my faith of The Church of Jesus Christ. Peter, I am asking you to leave all of this behind...and write my name on your heart...I NEED someone to Preach My Gospel. I NEED someone who loves Me.´´
Following this account, Peter began his LEGENDARY Apostalic mission & he saved many of the Lord´s sheep and performed many miracles. 
Brothers and Sisters, my heart is full.
As I stood there, soaking wet, water up to my ankles, staring at my name tag with the Everlasting Redeemer of the world´s name on it, I asked myself...
Do I love the Lord?
Because if I do I will ´´cast out my nets & fish´´, I will defend His faith and preach His Gospel. Not for me but for Him. For others. I will put on this name tag every single day...and LOVE HIM. Forever. There are so many people who are desperately searching for the truth, but they do not know where to find it. Brothers and Sister, put on your name tags. Defend His faith and preach His Gospel. TRULY, TRULY, LOVE HIM. Do not wait until you are in the middle of Mexico with water up to your ankles to decide.
I love you all so much. The Church is true. I know it. I LOVE the Lord and it is because of my love for the Lord that I am here. His love for me and for all of you is endless and eternal. As is our Father in Heaven´s. I am going to show my love by giving up two years of my life to help others for eternity.
No matter how heavy the rain...how deep the water...or how challenging the task...wear the Lord´s name on your heart and remember who you represent.
Love Him.
I love you all!
Elder Noll

Jessi's Mission Scripture

Jessi must be in Heaven with access to a piano!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

August 19, 2014 - First Letter Home

Hola mi familia y amigos!!
It has been quite the adventure so far! The flight here was okay...I just slept! I was surrounded by 18 year-olds in suits and ties so i was not in it alone! When we got to Houston there were 16 of us who had all flown in from different states and airports. Most of us are all going to Ecuador! Anyway, we all met up at the gate and it ended up being the wrong one so we had to sprint to the other side of the airport to catch out flight! I am sure it was quite the visual to see 16 Mormon boys run from one end of the airport to the other! Haha! We made it in time and landed safely in Mexico. By this time we were a little more relaxed. So we got off the plane, positioned ourselves in an orderly fashion, and swagged off into the distance. I was leading the crew! I felt so cool! haha! I was leading a pack of a bunch of nervous, scared, clean shaven, suited up 18 year olds! We ALL felt cool! My swag quickly faded when we made it to the counter and I had to ask where we went for the immigration check. The answer to my question was....uhhh??? Como? I soon realized that I was in Mexico City and that that I No Hablo Espanol! We finally found the bus to take us to the MTC (CCM in Spanish) and here I am! 
Nothing too crazy has happened yet! Wake up at 6...pray and study...eat breakfast...pray and study...eat lunch...pray and study...eat dinner...pray and study...teach an investigator...pray and study...pray again and then go to bed!!! HAHA! I love it! The spirit is so strong here! Beans and rice seems to be my diet! That is really about it! I already have to tighten my belt to the next hole! if that makes any sense...I am losing weight! haha! Swoll is NOT life!  All is well though and Mexico is awesome! I fall asleep to gun shots, sirens, screams, and the buzzing sound of mosquitoes every night! HAHA! (I am perfectly safe mother) But I really do love it here!
We taught an investigator on our first real day here...in ALL SPANISH!! We just ended up reading scriptures and Preach My Gospel the whole time. The second time was even worse. He made fun of me because i was using sign language to communicate with him. Then I wanted him to read a few verses in the Book Of Mormon but I did not know how to say 41, 42, or 43...NUTS! I just asked him if he could read cuatro uno cuatro dos and cuatro tres...he paused and looked at me for a sec...then busted up laughing. He would not stop! He was crying! I felt really stupid but now that I look back...it was pretty funny! Yesterday we had the opportunity to teach him again. Before we went in we prayed that he could feel the spirit and then we would be blessed with the gift of tongues. We dropped our books and notes...and went to work! Somehow and in some way we were able to communicate with this man! By the end of the lesson I was able to share my testimony with him without even thinking about it...and my companion did the same thing (Elder S is my companion by the way. He is such a stud). We prayed and then left. The spirit was so strong! He committed to read the BOM and pray to our Heavenly Father. It just goes to show that Heavenly Father answers prayers and that our Savior makes up for out weakness through the spirit. I promise that prayer is direct communication with the Almighty God of this world. What a blessing it is to communicate with Him and to feel His love.
My spiritual thought for the week is for the Priesthood holders out there! Brethren...Girls grow up nurturing and caring for dolls, they learn how to love, etc. and what do us guys do? We destroy things, break things, and shoot toy guns. It is no wonder the Lord does not authorize women to hold the Priesthood! Why do they need what they already have? The Priesthood is love. Women are born with it! Us men need it to help us stop being boneheads (which is impossible) and to become more like our Savior! As missionaries and Priesthood holders we are so unqualified and inadequate to bare this power and authority...but He gives it to us because He knows we need something to help us obtain those Heavenly and Christlike attributes that Daughters of God are already born with! The Priesthood is love. It is the power by which the Son of God created the Heavens and the Earth. It is the power by which He blessed and administered the sacrament to His 12 Disciples. What a blessing it is to bare that same power! Us it wisely! This past week, I have learned that in order to use it wisely and to bare this power worthily we need to act and think like a women. 
Woah Elder Noll! Hand over your man card...Now!!!
I am 100% serious!
Daughters of our Heavenly Father are so incredible, so beautiful, so obedient, so in tune with the spirit, and so Christlike already that they do not even need to be holders of the Priesthood! So Brethren, become a Christlike MAN and PRIESTHOOD HOLDER by becoming more like a DAUGHTER OF GOD. You will be blessed for it and be more qualified to bare the Lords power. Women...You all just keep doing your thing! I love the Lord. I love my Savior! I am learning more and more every day! 
Yo se que Jesucristo es la Redentor y Salvador de a la tierra. Yo se que Dios es nuestra Padre Celestial. La Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos dias es verdad. En el nombre de Jesucristo. Amen.(translation: I know that Jesus Christ is the Redeemer and Savior of the earth. I know that God is our Heavenly Father.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true. In the name of Jesus Christ.)
Love you and miss you ALL!
Elder Noll


August 13, 2014 - Elder Noll is gone :(

Elder Noll is on his way to the Mexico MTC where he will stay for the next 6 weeks while he learns Spanish - We made him his mission bear and were pretty sad most of the day, until this came in:

I made it! I am already loving it. I am safe. My P-DAY is on Tuesday! :) Talk to you guys soon!
Elder Noll

So glad to know he is there safely and happy!

August 13, 2014 - Saying Goodbye to Elder Noll

August 13th - 3:30am...leaving for the airport.

After checking in baggage and getting his boarding passes, Elder Noll said goodbye to the family - an emotional moment for all of us - then proceeded to walk through the slowest security line ever! Once he was through, it was all good - Gary even surprised him by meeting up with him and buying him breakfast before his plane took off. (Gary was flying to Idaho - hence why he got to go through security :)

August 12, 2014 Set Apart

Jessi was set apart on August 12 - officially making him a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints!

July 22, 2014 San Diego Temple

Jessi chose to go to the San Diego temple as he prepares for his mission. What a beautiful temple - inside and out. It was an amazing day!

June 29, 2014 Jessi's Farewell

Elder Noll said farewell today along with Elder Johnson who leaves next week. Jessi still has a bout 6 weeks until he leaves, but they wanted to do this together.

March 20, 2014 - Mission Call Opening

Elder Jessi Brian Noll has been called to serve in the Ecuador, Guayaquil North mission. He reports to the Mexico MTC on August 13, 2014. 

20 minutes later we watched his best friend, Jake Johnson open his call - to the SAME MISSION! leaving one month earlier than Jess!

Elder Noll and Johnson - best friends since they were little kids - received their call on the same day, going to the same mission!