Tuesday, December 31, 2013

December 31, 2013
Happy New Year
Friends and Family,

Christmas came and went with the wonderful baptismal service of Eric Martinez. President Chambers and the APs came to the baptism, and it was full of the spirit. I'll include some pictures later on.

Each of us are blessed with Extraordinary Gifts. Perhaps society will not notice these abilities, but God does, because he helped you develop them before this life. We grew up with Him and came to know him very well. We grew, and learned with His divine help, until it was time for us to take the trip down to Earth to apply what we had learned in an environment without His help. He asks us to serve others, using the gifts we have been given, and bring them happiness.

To tap into these divine attributes that we inherited from our heavenly Father, we must follow His guide lines or commandments. He has drawn the map for us and simply asks us to follow it. It is full of turns and twists, and at times we may not understand where we are lead to, but He does, and so as we follow His principles, we will obtain heavenly treasures "where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt" (Matthew 6:20).  We must unleash our potential by putting for our own efforts.

Once again, I’ll preach about Goal setting, as the new year is upon us. We must set a vision of what we want to accomplish, then a smaller term goal that allows progress toward that vision, and then make a plan of how we will achieve that goal.

A man named Roger Bannister truly did just that. He had a vision to head to the Olympics and win a gold medal in the mile run. He went with hopes, and ended up getting 4th, coming home humiliated, and depressed. He said he would not run anymore, with his eyes set on graduating from medical school, which required much study. His coach asked him to reconsider, saying that he would be the one who could break the 4 minute mark in the mile, which at this time had not been done. Roger Bannister decided to develop a will of iron. He knew he would need to study 6-8 hours each day for medical school, train for 4 hours a day, sleep from 9-10 hours each day to be in top shape and eat the healthiest foods. He did just that, and when the day came, he ran a record 3:59.4 minute mile, making him a worldwide star.
This man had a vision, set some goals, and made plans and rigorously stuck to his plans, and achieved greatness. The same is possible for us, as we commit to rigorously stick to the commandments we have been given, so that we too may achieve greatness.
May you all have a wonderful new year, and set goals appropriate to who you all are, children of God.

with love,
-Elder Toborg

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

December 24, 2013
Friends and Family, Merry CHRISTmas!!

I've had a wonderful time on my mission as a representative of Christ. Each day, my companion and I go out and testify of Christ and his divine mission to save us from death and sin. We cannot live after this life without him. This is a wonderful time to celebrate the birth of Christ. Don't be bashful about sharing the message of him with others, and inviting them to come to His church! 

As missionaries, we have Christmas day set aside to collect the conversion stories of our recent converts. It's a wonderful testimony to others who have not yet made the decision to join the church to see how the spirit touched the lives of other. From what i've seen on my mission, the only time people become truly converted is when they pray and ask God for themselves, meaning, asking a specific question. "God, is the Book of Mormon true?" (requires a yes or no answer!) and the promise of Moroni in Moroni 10:3-5 in the Book of Mormon is that if we ask with a sincere heart, having real intent and faith in Christ, we will receive an answer from the Holy Ghost that these things are true. Old or young, tall or small, everyone must ask for themselves.

I also have the fortune to stay in Kearns for another 6 weeks, as transfers came and went with few changes. 

We had the baptism of Brandon Hernandez last Saturday, and tomorrow we will have the baptism of Eric Martinez, grandson of Concepcion martinez who was baptized in November. His dad will be performing the ordinance, and this will almost complete the whole family, Grandma down to grandson, with just one more son who hasn't joined the church yet. 

Today is going to be D-day, we have 5 dinners scheduled tonight, and we'll see if Elder Clark and I can survive the night.. 

I included a picture of some of the Elders from my Zone, there names are (starting from the bottom left and going up clock-wise):
Elder Moreira from Spain
Elder Alpin from Michigan 
Elder Flack from New Mexico
Elder Whiting from Arizona
Elder Bridge from Canada
Elder Clark from Ohio
Elder Villarreal from Oklahoma
Elder Gonzalez from St. George Utah

Thank you all so much for your support, letters and some packages! I feel your love, no matter how far you may be. I'm excited for my sister Jessica Freeman who will be moving to Arizona soon! 

Merry Christmas! See you soon Mom, Dad and Christie! 

Monday, December 16, 2013

December 16, 2013
One Year in Kearns
Friends and Family,

On 12/12/12 I came into the city of Kearns as a timid, unlearned missionary. As 12/12/13 passed, marking a year in this wonderful city, though still unlearned, I have learned some things. Day by day I work on being a bold declarer of the word of God, not fearing man but serving God only, for he is whom we ought to serve (Acts 5:29). 

I spent a couple days in celebration, you could say. For lunch on the 12th I went to Tipo Tacos, the famous taco stand, as well as my favorite panadería (bakery) the Panadería de Mexico 

The next day was E. Villarreal's birthday, so we headed down to Rancho Market (Mexican Grocery store) for some Molcajete. Molcajete, as the picture shows, is a boiling cauldron of cheese, napal (cactus), chicken, beef, onions and shrimp. It's delicious, and fed the 6 of us well. I included some other pictures as well of Rancho Market, which we hear from some members, that there is a Rancho Market in Provo now. I'll get to enjoy this food at college too after the mission! Wohoo! 

This week has been a roller coaster of emotions in the missionary work. We've had some wonderful miracles, included the decision by Eric Martinez, grandson of Concepción who was baptized in November, decide he wants to be baptized on Christmas day. So we'll have a wonderful baptismal service on the day we celebrate Christ's birth. Also, this Saturday we'll have the baptism of Brandon Hernandez, son of Patricia, who is excited for his baptism on the 21st. We're also teaching a man named Antonio who moved in with a member family. We invited him to be baptized on Christmas day as well, and he's going to pray about it. 

This Wednesday are transfers, and I’ve been here for 6 months. I'm praying that I stay here! However, I will always follow my leaders, and face the same way as the Savior, and I will go where He wants me to go. 

Oh yes, also, we had a flat tire this week and our investigator Esteban (in the picture) helped us put our dinky spare on. I fit in now with everyone else in Kearns who has been driving on their spare tires forever C: 

Love you all! 
-Elder Toborg

Monday, December 9, 2013

December 9, 2013

Friends and Family,
As of yesterday, I can now say that I ate menudo. Menudo is a dish that Hispanics, mostly Mexican's, eat. It consists of: Intestines. It is the dish that all missionaries fear, and Elder Clark and I ate the whole thing. (see pictures).

This week was an eventful week. The week's unique events started with a 9 hour meeting with Brother Wade who is Director of Operations in the Missionary Department for the world and Bro. Ware who is in charge of the Referral Center for the world. They taught us about the doctrine of Christ, and how we are teaching people three basic principles in our three first lessons.

1: Revelation. We teach people that God has, does and will reveal things to people through revelation. We help people start receiving their own revelation through prayer.

2: Atonement. We teach the Plan of Salvation (also known as the plan of happiness), how it is all centered on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and why we must apply that in our lives.

3: The Way. We teach about Faith in Jesus Christ and his Atonement, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and remaining faithful until the end of their lives; or in other words, how we apply the saving power of the atonement in our lives. 

The next day, we had the opportunity (Elder Clark and I) to teach our first Zone Training Meeting. This is a new training tool that the Church started this month, and it consists of us teaching and helping our zone practice for 2-3 hours once a month. It truly was a revelatory experience, and I believe our zone profited greatly from the training.

We live in the basement apartment
This week as well, we spent a large amount of time digging ourselves out of over a foot of snow that we got in Kearns. It's been between 3-8 degrees this whole week, which has been a nice blessing because all of the Hispanics we teach are in their houses now due to the slack in work outside due to the elements. 

We also had the privilege of attending a performance called "Luz de las Naciones" performed in the tabernacle by various Spanish wards and branches in the valley. I'll describe this more next week when I have pictures (on my companion's camera!). 

The work of the Lord goes onward, and I'm grateful to be a part of it. I'm thankful for the scriptures and the hidden treasures I’m beginning to find each day in studying them deeply. This is the church of Jesus Christ, and I am one of His representatives. I know this to be His work, His church, and His glory. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

-Elder Toborg

Monday, December 2, 2013

December 2, 2013

Families and Friends!

This week, I've developed a wonder appreciation for the scriptures! They really do contain the mysteries of God. Sometimes, I wish He would make them clearer, and they do become clear the more we study! Over the past weeks, I’ve been studying King Benjamin's discourse given to his people in the Book of Mormon in Mosiah Chapters 2-5. I finally finished chapter 5, and found some important insights in 4 and 5.

In Chapter 3, King Benjamin teaches his people the instruction he received from an Angel. I can't imagine what that experience must have been like! In chapter 4, his people are humbled and ready to receive more instruction, and so King Benjamin goes into detail about the Gospel of Christ (Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost and Enduring to the End). In verse 9, he expounds Faith, in 10, he describes changing, or repenting, and becoming humble. In Alma 32:16 we find that "being humble" means being baptized without stubbornness of heart. Going back to vs. 6 we find enduring to the end. There are a lot more mysteries to be found, so start looking! (Vs. 5 is all about baptism too.)

This Thanksgiving weekend, I was looking forward to having a nice round of Hispanic Thanksgiving food; however the two meals we ate happened to be Americanized meals… Turkey and stuffing, etc. So nothing too special happened on Thanksgiving, just gaining weight as always. 

On Tuesday, we went down to Temple Square with Alice and her boyfriend Julio. Alice is getting ready to be baptized on the 15th, and has a strong desire. The only hold up is marriage, and they've been thinking about it for a while. Alice has been a great miracle; she was attending our ward for a while before she came up to us and said, "I want to be baptized." I love the Lord!

Christmas time is here, and it's time to think about Christ! Keep him in mind as you share this wonderful time with friends and family. Love you all!

-Elder Toborg

Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25, 2013

Friends and Family,

This week has been a great time to reflect upon the visions and goals that the Lord has for each and everyone one of us. He wants us to become something great. In order to teach us, we must be humble. Humility includes accepting the will of God before our own will. At times we want to fight back with pride. Pride is saying "let my will be done, and not thine." The Lord will have a humble people, we can choose to be humble, or the Lord can compel us to be humble through our trials. Alma 32:16 states the blessing we can receive as we humble ourselves first. 

"Therefore, blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to be humble; or rather, in other words, blessed is he that believeth in the word of God, and is baptized without stubbornness of heart, yea, without being brought to know the word, or even compelled to know, before they will believe."

I love the emphasis the scriptures have on Baptism! We really can't progress anywhere until we've been forgiven of our mistakes, and tasted of the Savior's love. Once this happens, our eyes can be opened to the mysteries of the Lord, this certainly has happened to me on my mission as i repent daily.

This week we had two of the Godoy family members come, Allan and Cindy, who are both on date to be baptized on the 14th. They're conversion has been amazing. Their mother is less-active, and knows very little about the gospel, so we're re-teaching her with his family. We have high hopes for this family!

This Sunday, to everyone's surprise, our Branch President, President Salazar, was released after serving for 5 months. He's the best Branch President/Bishop i've ever seen. He's so loving and kind. We're not sure why he was released, perhaps because he had a full time job, full time school and was a branch president. We're going to keep working closely with him!

I've attached a wonderful picture that represents Kearns to me. This is the Lord's work and I'm excited to keep working! 

                                                                                                           - Elder Toborg

Monday, November 18, 2013

November 18, 2013

Friends and Family,

This week we had the wonderful opportunity of baptizing Concepción Calderon Garduno. She was insistent that I perform the ordinance, which we try to avoid, because we as missionaries leave, but the people in the branch stay. The emotions caused by the spirit were very strong, and we're hoping that her grandson, Eric, will want to follow suit. (He's the one in the picture trying to grab his Mom's face! Jokester, just like his father).

We're continuing to have more success as we work through the members; I encourage each of you to be a missionary by inviting your friends to hear about the gospel. Take out your phone, and invite every non-member you have to meet with the missionaries to hear more about the restored Gospel, and I’m sure you'll be surprised at how many will say yes!

Elder Julian got to come down from Draper to see the baptism; it was a wonderful time for everyone!

We ate dinner beforehand at the Tovar's home. They fed us a salmon soup with shrimp. I had never seen salmon in a soup before, and the taste reminded me of Washington.

Recently, I have been reviewing the talks given at General Conference in October. There are many gems that I have found, and the one I'd like to share is by Elder Jeffery R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and his talk entitled, "Like a broken Vessel."

Elder Holland began by directing his comments at all those who felt depressed or down spirited. I know he was speaking to those out there who are thinking about ending their life in this world, as to hope for some relief. We have the relief, it's right here, in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He is the one who can heal any wound or make fair any situation.

I particularly loved his comments on having "Square shoulders and positive thinking." There are many hardships in life, and most of them we can handle if we will hold ourselves high, and see the potential in ourselves. Elder Holland went on to say that we if are presented with the bitter cup, be strong and drink it, and wait for better times. We can be firm in the moment, and as we rely on the Lord, he will strengthen us.

I know Christ lives, and we will live again as well. Let us humble ourselves and come to Him.

In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

-Elder Toborg.

Monday, November 11, 2013

November 11, 2013
I’m still in Kearns!

Well, Family and Friends,

Transfers came and went. Transfers are times when missionaries get mixed up, whether it be in a new area or stay in the area with a different companion. I got to stay! I'm still in the Kearns West Stake, meaning that this December I will hit a year in the city of Kearns. It's been a blessed time! 

My companion, Elder Julian, didn't have such luck. He was called early in the morning of transfers to be the new Assistant to the President, replacing Elder Talentino who had been one of the two assistants for 6 months. Elder Talentino was also my companion when he received the call, so I’m seeing a pattern here; fair warning to my new companion, Elder Sean Clark from Ohio. He's been out 15 months and the members of our ward say his Spanish sounds as though he learned it from Spain. 

Other changes include an elder from Spain, Elder Moreira, who is now one of our district leaders. He was in my district 3 months ago with Elder Smith in the Western Hills 8th area, and was sent to the English assignment to learn English. Now he's back in his old area as a district leader, and it's been a blast working with him!

As far as our area is concerned, it's been booming! The members have really picked it up in our branch. Sister Tovar, from Mexico, invited a certain family for 2 months to come to church. This week, she saw the fruits of her labors! The Reyes family came, all 6 of them, and they were very pleased with what they felt and experienced at church. We're going to start teaching them this week! 

Also, we took our investigator Concepción down town to Temple Square. She is a 70 year old Catholic grandmother who thought she would never change. One day, she told us, she woke up and realized, "You know… babies really don't have a sin when they're born! My church has been teaching me wrong! I need to get baptized!" She'll be baptized next weekend! 

We're working with another man named Sergio, from Cuba. He's had a very rough life, but he is ready for the gospel. He came to church, and as soon as he entered the doors, he knelt down and drew a cross in the air with his hand and stood back up, which was pretty humorous in the moment! He's a very colorful guy, and I’m excited to see the change the gospel brings in his life. He also has 3 boys ages 19, 16, and 12, and they're very interested in the gospel. His wife might be a concern, but we hope to teach her too!

On Thursday, Elder Clark and I had the opportunity to teach English for the first time. It's very difficult to explain why things are the way they are in English…. Those who showed up consisted of various ward members, a non-member Esteban who is married to the branch president's sister, and a less-active, Eduardo, who we invited earlier that week. In all there were about 23 people. We had them take a test, which took them 2 hours to complete as a team. Next week we'll have some more structure to the program, bringing in the senior couple missionaries who teach English on a 1 on 1 basis known as the "daily dose" program. We'll see how it goes!

The work is moving forward, and I love it! Kearns is as dirty as ever, and I hope to stay here another 7 months!

Love you all!

-Elder Toborg

Monday, November 4, 2013

Nov 4, 2013

Here is a picture of Salvador Oregon's family
who we took to temple square a couple weeks ago.
It's a picture fitting for Halloween!
Friends and Family,

I find myself wrapped up in the wonderful emails that you have been sending me, I love seeing pictures of things that have been going on. Thank you for your support, and I feel your love! 

This upcoming Wednesday is transfer day. I've been feeling for a while now that my 11 month splurge in the city of Kearns is coming to an end, though I'd love to stay! I know lots of changes will happen this transfer, and I'm ready to learn and grow from the new people I meet, and new situations I find myself in. 

This past Wednesday, I attended our monthly Mission Leadership Council, comprising of all the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders. Here are some insights that our key holder, President Chambers, taught us:

Coming to Earth, with the ability to choose, known as agency, was the only way we could gain the experience necessary to become what God would have us become. When we lived with God as spirits before this life, our agency was influenced by God's presence. I imagine it was easier to choose the right when we could see God face to face! 

To perpetuate further growth, God created Adam and Eve as the first spirits who would receive a physical body. They lived on Earth in the presence of God, and were given certain commandments to obey. Eventually, Adam and Eve chose to disobey one of the commandments, the eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, and had to be cast out of God's presence. 

This places us in the circumstance we are in now. God gave more commandments to his children to lead them back to Him. God's plan was never to only "save" us, meaning that we would live in comfort with him again with a glorified and perfect body in heaven. God's plan is to exalt us, meaning we can become similar to Him. The only way to do this is for us to gain experience through our choices. Experience is crucial. We fall, get up, learn, grow, repeat. Someday, in eternity, we will master every part of life, and become perfect like God. This process cannot be achieved in this life, thus demanding the necessity of our resurrection and continued growth after this life. 

Yes, we will have more time after this life, but don't take this time lightly. If we do not keep God's commandments, we can disqualify ourselves for increased learning. We also learn from the prophet Joseph Smith, Whatever principle of intelligence we attain unto in this life, it will rise with us in the resurrection. And if a person gains more knowledge and intelligence in this life through his diligence and obedience than another, he will have so much the advantage in the world to come. (Doctrine and Covenants, 130: 19-19). 

Let us keep using our agency to keep the commandments, starting with baptism to cleanse us of our mistakes. Everything we go through is for our growth and learning! 

In the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

-Elder Toborg

Here is a picture of Salvador Oregon's family who we took to temple square a couple weeks ago. It's a picture fitting for Halloween!

Monday, October 28, 2013

October 28, 2013

This past week, I have been studying and reflecting about goal setting. There are three basic parts we use in the mission to accomplish certain things. We call this Vision, Goal, Plan. First, we set a vision of what we want to accomplish. This is a broad, overall statement of success, such as "Make it to Heaven." In an everyday sense, an example is "Graduate from BYU." The Goal is a specific, measurable statement that you can achieve with effort, and can be one of many goals set to accomplish your vision, such as "Complete 4 semesters", "Achieve an "A" in 3 classes each semester", etc... The plan is a very specific, detailed course that you will take to achieve the goal: "Study for 2 hours each day, in each class." 

The Scriptures give us wonderful examples of setting a vision, goal and plan. In Alma 48, we see first an example of evil, Amalickiah, who sets a vision to rule over all the land, a goal of conquering all of the Nephites, and a plan of setting certain captains to attack weak points in the Nephites armies. Moroni, a couple verses later, explains his vision, which is to have his people follow God, and have faith in him. We might expound this vision to receiving salvation. His goal is to save the people's liberty, lives, wives and children, and his plan, in this circumstance of war, was to strengthen his weakest points and build up fortifications. We also see examples of Vision, Goal, Plan from Nephi in 1 Nephi chapters 3-4. 

From these three men, I was extracting some key points for achieving our visions and goals.

1. They were all ambitious. All three of these leaders did everything in their power to achieve their goal, and never expressed any doubt that they would not reach their vision or goals (see 1 Nephi 3-4 for many examples).

2. Specifics. They all had very specific plans that they could execute in the moment, there was no waiting around to do something later; they set a course of action, and acted.

3. Righteousness. Out of the three, the only two who reached their goals and became closer to reaching their visions were Nephi and Moroni, who established their goals with the firm mindset to build the kingdom of God, and not their own. Amalickiah directly planned to exalt himself above others. 

If we want success in this life, we must master setting vision, goals and plans, and then follow through with those plans. This is part of what makes God, God. He established a plan, and he is following through with it, and will continue until every jot and title has been fulfilled. 

Pres. & Sis. Metcalf - Kearns
Got to eat dinner with our stake president, he's an incredible man!

This week I went down on an exchange with the Assistants to the President to their area in Draper. The work there is based solely upon members. They cannot progress anywhere until members invite, due to the fact that no one would be out on the streets, where as Kearns has an abundance of people outside, ready to be talked to. MEMBERS ARE VITAL IN MISSIONARY WORK! 

This work is great! If you lack the spirit in your life, get out there on the front lines with the missionaries and share your testimony! That which one keeps, he loses, and that which one freely shares, he shall keep. 

In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Oct 24, 2013
Text from Liz Bringhurst* in Draper:
“Scott and Rebecca, I just wanted you to know that I ran into the cutest missionary tonite!! Made me homesick for my good friends Pat and Tom. I  am serving in YWs and we were hosting a Halloween party for the ward. Not my typical clothing or face makeup. (Took the fake nose off for the pic), when in came your son. He was on splits with a missionary from Draper. So VERY small chance we would meet. What a special treat for me!! Sending my love, Liz Bringhurst”
Elder Daniel's reply: The first thing Liz Bringhurst said to me was, "Oh that's a good last name, do you know Scott Toborg?" Why yes Liz, I do! It was a strange circumstance because I was on an exchange with the Assistants in their area in Draper, and we showed up to a Halloween party to ask for referrals, and she was the very first person I talked to!
* (Mom's message to Elder Daniel): Ben & Liz Bringhurst's family were wonderful neighbors to Gma Pat & Gpa Tom in Spanish Fork before you were born. That Toborg name is very distinct and makes you easily recognizable. I hope you love it all your life (even if no one can say it in Spanish).

Monday, October 21, 2013

And here's a picture of Elder Daniel on his own bike.

Oct 21, 2013
Tongues of angels

God would have us speak with the Tongue of Angels. As Elder Holland put it in his general conference address in April of 2007, we can do much to uplift and encourage others with our words. As said in James 3:2, we can become perfect if we learn how to maintain our speech in line with God's will. Our words control our entire body, and allow us to overcome or yield to temptation. James 3:3-10 speaks of various comparisons such as a large boat being controlled by a small helm, a horse which can be lead about by a small bridle, and the more destructive power that a small fire can do in decimating an entire forest. Controlling our words begins with controlling our thoughts. We cannot simply hope to expel dark thoughts and hope for the best, we must replace that empty space with wholesome, uplifting thoughts, or else risk the return of the darkness into our minds. 

I received a personal witness of this principle today as I sought revelation. As my companion and I went to do a study with another companionship many banters were thrown around by 19-21 year old boys, and I chose not to participate. I could feel the spirit maintaining its presence, and I was then able to receive pure revelation on what a certain investigator needed to be baptized. We must be absolute in our decision to not offend the Spirit, for it will not dwell in unholy temples. 

Jordan River Temple
This past week, as I mentioned earlier, I had the supreme opportunity to view the new video in the Temple. I now know why technology was allowed to be brought forth by the Lord. I know many people will understand the Fall of Adam and Eve better by this new video. I identified some of the truths I knew about the Fall that were represented. I look forward to Halloween, when our entire mission will go to the temple to do an endowment session. (They keep us locked up on Halloween due to the fact that many youth enjoy dressing up as Elders and Sisters and going about wreaking havoc.) 

This week brings new challenges and new opportunities to reach our goals! Set a righteous goal, make a plan, and make up your mind to follow through and become the person you want to become. We truly can become MORE if we do MORE. I view goal setting as working smart. 

In our area, here in the Kearns West stake, we are going to begin teaching various people who have been coming to church and for whatever reasons did not want to meet with us before, but now something as changed. We helped the Second Counselor in the Branch Presidency re-do his roof by placing new shingles on. It took about 4 hours of consistent work, and we finished. We now have a strong relationship with this man, Hermano Acosta from Uruguay, and he gave us a wonderful referral a couple days later. Interesting how the spirit of service touches people at different times. I'm now also proud to say I know how to re-shingle a roof! 

Well, life continues onward, I wish you all the best of luck on your tests, your school work, your jobs, careers, and whatever goals you have in mind right now!

With Love,

-Elder Toborg-

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October 15, 2013

I was not able to send an email yesterday, due to the fact that we are to have P-day on the days we go to the temple, and today is our Temple day! 
We had two big events this week. The first being a cultural festival we had in our Branch that attracted over 570 people, many being non-members. There were various dances and tables with many Spanish speaking countries displaying their countries cultures. 

Second, we had the baptism of Ivette. Her father is still not a member, and told us last night that he doesn't want to be baptized. I hope the Lord humbles him soon. Ivette's mom had a huge party after the baptism with posole (a type of soup) and pastel (cake). 
Pictures count for a thousand words, so I’ve included a couple.

E. Julian and I are trying to rebuild the split Kearns Zone still, and we're seeing a steady increase each month. I'm so pleased to be here in Utah, learning leadership and gospel principles that I could never have learned anywhere else. 
Love you all! 
-Elder Toborg

Monday, October 7, 2013

Mom finally got a picture of Elder Daniel on his bike....

Oct 7, 2013


Friends and Family,

This week, I truly have felt the dews of Heaven rest upon my life. Conference was yet another witness of the truthfulness of this work, as I felt the Spirit confirm that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God. Various talks struck right at home, especially the address given by Elder Holland, who uplifted those who feel depression in their lives. We viewed conference with Salvador, and the rest of his family. Salvador's mother, Guadalupe, brother, Delfino, and sister, Crystal, are all interested in the Gospel. They did not accept a baptismal date; however this is no concern, for I know they will get baptized. 

This weekend was also coupled with the joining of a couple; Elias and Carmen Rascón were married
 and baptized in between and after conference sessions! The wedding took place between the Saturday afternoon and Priesthood sessions, and due to me being down town at the time, I missed the actually ceremony. (I was able to slip in for the food at the end though!) Elias refers to himself as "the Man" so you'll notice his lack of smile is due to his manliness. He really is the man; he does a lot of hard work and is exploding with confidence. He's excited for his sealing next year in the temple.
While waiting outside to get into the Saturday Session of conference, I saw Shaylin from freshmen year at BYU, what a great opportunity! Though I must admit, I’m not ready to see anyone I know for another 8 months, and the interaction caught me off guard!

Conference emphasized multiple times the decree that we must hold fast to God's laws, even if Man's laws allow sin. This brought up memories of the changes I hear happened back home in Washington regarding legalization of certain unholy and impure practices. Stay close to the scriptures, and to what God wants. We are free to have our own opinions and laws, just remember where our power leads us: Six feet under to mold. God's laws and God's power lead to resurrection and glory, so I think I will follow Him. In order to follow God, we must study how he operates. How he speaks. How he commands. Then we can listen to His voice, for we shall recognize it. We cannot do this until we are free from sin. The Holy Ghost will not be with us fully until we are free from sin. We must repent, or there can be no spiritual progression to the degree God intends. If any of you have unfinished business that needs to be taken care of with the Lord and with His leaders, take care of it. Elder Holland's statement in the Ensign of September 2013 is profound. "I believe with all my heart that it is easier and surely more satisfying to begin anew than to go on and try to believe that justice will not take its toll." God will judge us for our works, and as we see the increase in missionary work, we know that the time is near for Christ to come and cleans the Earth. I know repentance; I know the Lord gives us JOY when we repent. Nothing but joy awaits! Repentance is beautiful. Baptism that follows is better C:
In the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

-Elder Toborg

Monday, September 30, 2013

September 30, 2013



This week has been a roller coaster. I'm limited on time so I’ll practice my ability to be brief, clear and simply.

Salvador Oregon was baptized this weekend. He was a miracle. We found him by setting up an appointment with a random Hispanic man on the doorstep of his cousin's house. When we returned, that man was not there, but Salvador was taking the trash out, and as we are commanded to talk to everyone, we talked to him, he accepted baptism right there on a lesson on his door step, and he was baptized 2 weeks later. The only thing he told us would prevent him from baptism was "I don't think I’m ready to go on a mission yet!" He's already planning on going on a mission. What an incredible young man. We had amazing support from the Family. 

This week was transfers, I'm still with Elder Julian; however our visa waiter companion got moved down the street to another area of Kearns. The zone stayed relatively the same, except one of our new district leaders is Elder Parks from Texas. I served with him in Sandy a while ago, and now I get to work with him again! We also received a different third companion, Elder Kulu, from California. This man is incredible. He grew up in the Tongan Crypt Gang of Oakland California. He told all of his life growing up in a gang, and how he changed. The spirit can change anyone. Elder Kulu has finished his mission, and will be going home today. He was with us for a week, because he is going to live with my former president, Bruce Miller. He is doing this to avoid going back to his old life. After we finished our day, at 10pm we sat on the roof with Elder Kulu and he shared some experiences with us. I love this elder and I wish him the best. 

Elder Maughan's funeral seems so spectacular. I wish so badly that I was there, I pray that everyone can feel Peter's love, and the Savior's as they seek his council in the scriptures. 

Elias and Carmen Rascón will be married this Friday and baptized on Sunday. They pushed it back for silly worldly reasons, but they've made up their mind. I hope this is final! 

I will be at the Saturday Afternoon session of General Conference; I’m so excited to hear from the prophets and apostles!

Love you all!

Monday, September 23, 2013

P-day diversions with Elder Julian, Wolsen,

E. Julian, Me, Bridge, Tritapoe, Olsen

Well, Family and Friends, despite recent events, life still moves forward. Tomorrow are transfers, and I feel that my 10 month spree in Kearns will continue! 

The Rascon family
Last week, we took Elias and Carmen Rascón and their family down to Temple Square to get them ready for the baptism. We later found out that they aren't married, even though they told us they were married. So their baptism will be postponed a week while we get them married! 

Poli doesn't really want to progress, so we'll leave him for a while. He went down town to see if he could get his citizenship, and we haven't seen him since (4 days ago) so we think he failed and is deported to Mexico. We told him he should have gotten baptized and it would have gone better! Who knows?

We are teaching a wonderful boy named Salvador. We found him on the 14th, and he will be baptized this Sunday. He's been learning fast, and we're excited for this miracle! We took him down to Temple Square this week. 

During one of my lessons, shortly after finding out about Peter Maughan's passing, my Spanish increased dramatically and I felt Peter's presence in the lesson. I know he's doing fine, and that God's plan is perfect. I'm going to continue to seek for Peter's help, along with the Spirit's, during my mission. If nothing else, Peter is a driving inspiration in my life, and he will continue to be so. 

Our mission as a whole is increasing in number and in spirit. We were quite discouraged as a mission (or so says the other zone leaders, since I never felt it!) and now we're turning around and baptizing more as a mission. Kearns, after its split, has been doing well collectively, and we're excited for these transfers and the changes that always come. 

I have begun to study Doctrine and Covenants. There are many promises made to every member of the church; I encourage everyone to study the D&C (If you've finished the book of Mormon already), and apply it to your own life. 

I love the Work, and I’m going to keep Working.                -Elder Toborg

Monday, September 16, 2013

Sept 16, 2013

What he taught me

Super Hero Elder Maughan
Peter Maughan was an incredible soul. Our loving Heavenly Father gave us him for 20 years, to learn from, and to be loved by him. He was my dearest friend, and one who I call my brother. He passed away yesterday while serving in the Veracruz, Mexico Mission as a full-time representative of Jesus Christ.
In this email, I will attempt to relate some of the things that I learned from him. 

He taught me patience in a world of Haste; to pause and observe. Dedication to others, he taught me well through his example. If he ever had malice towards others, I never could tell. Faith, hope, charity and love, these divine attributes Peter truly received from above. When we remember faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility, diligence, we can remember him. 
These attributes come from our Savior, Jesus Christ, and so many were taken to heart by Peter. As his name so rightly implies, Peter was a Rock in a shifting world of values. And now my friends, family, and all inhabitants of the earth, "Remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation...a foundation where on if men build they cannot fall" (Helaman 5:12). 
Elder Peter Maughan's commission as a representative of Jesus Christ was to "invite others to come unto Christ, by helping them receive the restored gospel through Faith in Jesus Christ, and His atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end" (Preach My Gospel 1). I know that he still has this commission, as revealed by a modern day prophet, Joseph F. Smith: "I beheld that the faithful elders of this dispensation, when they depart from mortal life, continue their labors in the preaching of the gospel of repentance and redemption, through the sacrifice of the Only Begotten Son of God, among those who are in darkness and under the bondage of sin in the great world of the spirits of the dead." (Doctrine & Covenants 138:57)

He taught me life, to live with friends and create bonds. These bonds supersede earthly ties, and extend into eternity. This is only possible through the restored priesthood authority of God. 

One may come to a knowledge of what Peter gave his life for through The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ. As the introduction states, "we invite all men everywhere to read The Book of Mormon, to ponder in their hearts the message it contains, and then to ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ if the book is true."

Because this book is true, Jesus Christ lives. He overcame death and was resurrected. Because this book is true, Peter is in "a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where [he rests] from all [his] troubles and from all care and sorrow." (Alma 40:12) Because this book is true, Peter, along with every other soul, will someday resurrect, just as Christ did: "The soul shall be restored to the body, and the body to the soul; yea, and every limb and joint shall be restored to its body; yea, even a hair of the head shall not be lost; but all things shall be restored to their proper and perfect frame" (Alma 40:23). 

He taught me how to hug. How to embrace so tightly that his love is squeezed right into your soul. Because The Book of Mormon is true, I will embrace him again.

He taught me temperance. How to taste of everything and not over indulge. 

He taught me sacrifice, as he spent time and resources helping others learn, grow and progress. He truly sought to exalt others over himself; never admitting accomplishments where he excelled over someone else. One of the highest forms of humility. 

I shall see Peter again, if I live the commandments God has put forth. I exhort all to search the scriptures, to have faith, repent, be baptized in the church of Jesus Christ, who is the only one with power to forgive sin. I love Peter. I love the Lord, and I will continue being his servant. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sept 9, 2013

By grace we are saved, and nothing we do will change that (Eph. 2:8-10). It is only through the merits and mercy of Jesus Christ that we have a hope of living with our God and our families once again. He has paid the price for us, an un-payable debt that we incur as we desecrate the commandments God has given us, whether voluntarily or involuntarily. I know for myself that Christ did this out of love, and a knowledge that we cannot be saved unless someone intervenes for us. I will forever love the Savior for that. The Lord Jesus Christ has asked us to keep the commandments to the best of our ability. He knows that keeping the commandments allows grace to change us. Through grace we are saved, and changed. We will want to keep the commandments; we will want to live as Christ lived. This change is necessary. If we believe we can live life without consequence, we are fooling ourselves. As Mormon bluntly states in Mormon 9:3-4, we will not want to live in the presence of a just and holy God if we have not had this change. We are not "earning" our way to heaven by keeping the commandments, we are learning Heaven. We are learning how Heaven runs, and upon what principles the priesthood governs. This process of change all starts with Faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end; the Gospel of Christ. This is what missionaries bring to the world.

At times, people will not accept this Gospel. It is and will always be their choice. Poli (first picture) had a wonderful dinner with us and expressed his concerns about not being baptized this weekend, telling us that he wants his wife to support him before he is baptized. He came to church after this lesson and continues to learn, yet this fear of his wife is something he can't seem to overcome. Christ tells us in Matthew 10:34-37 that he who is not willing to give up father or mother for His sake is not worthy of Him. I know Poli will make the right choice. 

The other four pictures are of a surprise supper we ran into with our investigator David. David is from Mexico, and is living with his brother Daniel Rodriguez who is a member in the branch. David is still overcoming the world, but what a great guy. He's only 21 years old, though he looks 30+. We were given Camarones en aguachile (literally meaning Shrimp in water with chile). Elder Olsen (Visa waiter in our trio waiting to go to Argentina) couldn't handle a single bite. Elder Julian and I foolishly ate the whole bowl which led to them giving us another bowl. David is so caught up in the world, but he recognizes that God can help us overcome out challenges. He is looking at a goal of baptism on the 29th. We'll see how it goes!

Elias and Carmen Rascón, a beautiful family we're teaching, chose not to come to church this week. We're still hoping to head down to temple square with the family. They have all the support anyone could ever need! They'll make great members. 

The Zone is increasing in enthusiasm, though we added a new key indicator (numbers that measure our work as missionaries for the week) of "Reactivation." Reactivation applies to less-active families to come to church 3/4 times in a month. This is supposed to help elders and sisters teach less-actives less, and move on if they're not going to progress. There has always been the problem of elders and sisters spending too much time with less-active families and wasting time teaching the same families that do not change for months and months. We are commanded to drop the seeds, pick up the sickle and baptize. I hope we can continue to focus on baptism. I hope grace changes them to want to baptize. There is no way to apply the saving grace of Christ without Baptism.

Love you all!

-Elder Toborg