Rob is serving a two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the West Indies. This blog will contain his letters home. He is doing a great work, and would love to hear from you!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Another Rough Week

Elder Platt had another rough week, but he is hopeful things will turn around and grateful for the experience a mission brings. In response to a story Roger sent him about an answer to prayer, Rob wrote: "I love it when that happens, when prayer seems to just work instantly! I can't tell you how many times I've seen it work in my life as well." He also commented on Sister Freyre's recent return from the mission field: "Can't believe Cece is already home. She's way rad! Give her my email sometime." If anyone reading this blog knows Sister Freyre, please pass it along. Here are the rest of Rob's email notes: "Blah. This week has sucked pretty badly. Had eight people who told me they were going to come to church and no one showed up :(. All the new missionaries seem to be having baptisms and I can't even get one :(. Just really annoying. I feel like I'm no good at this :/, but life goes on. I just gotta keep trying my best. The district here is about the same size it was, but they replaced a lot of the sisters with elders. The companionship in Black Rock split up too, so now I'm a district leader over the whole zone? lol. I don't know what the difference is anymore between a district and a zone, but yes, 30 more missionaries are coming in this transfer, so we'll see how that goes. And Jillean - ugh - her back is feeling better but she's just having more complications with the hospital on Jace's medical records, so she's in kinda a rough spot. I don't know exactly how that's gonna go, but I'm hoping she'll be up and running back in the church soon enough. :P We'll see. But for the most part things here seem to be lacking as far as progress goes. Hopefully that'll change soon. Sorry this email isn't all that long, but I'll try to think of more things to add next time. Thanks for the love and support, much needed."
This photo is a couple of months old, taken while Rob was still in Black Rock. No new pictures sent today.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Hangin' In There

Not the best week for Rob, but he is "hangin' in there." At least he was able to work off his frustration with some beach volleyball today. Here is his note from this morning, followed by some great pictures: "Plenty of volleyball today. Last week Elder Cox was pretty vexed because I wasn't there to play on his team. lol. We dominate on the v-ball court ;) We actually moved into a new apartment because they are splitting our area in half, so me and Elder Sandbakken are going to be taking on the northern half of the area while the new missionaries are taking on the southern half. Which is good, cuz the last apartment was filled with roaches. XP So nasty! I don't know if I told you this already or not but the roaches here can fly O.O lol. But ya, so we were filling up the font with an hour until Jillean's baptism and she called us an hour before hand and told us she hurt her back falling down a set of stairs and couldn't make it. -______- Not sure what the Lord has in store here but I guess he knows best. Pretty frustrating, just cuz I'm working so hard out here but I'm not able to see the results. Never wanted to call it quits as much as I have this last week. Like, I know it's important to be out here but this last few days I just feel like I'm not good enough for this work. Like I'm not really making a difference for anyone. Just frustrating. Hopefully things will pick up here. Gonna talk with Jillean today. Not a whole lot to report on this week just kinda hangin' in there. Hopefully everything works out in the end. We shall see :P." (In photos below, Rob is in the green shirt - in case you couldn't tell.)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Adventures with The Sandman

In the photo above, Rob shows off his culinary talents. Apparently, the chicken-in-dumplings recipe brought a smile. Here are his notes from this week. The first remarks are in response to a chance encounter we had with Sister Patterson at Roger's mom's house. She was at the MTC with Rob, and has a sister who served in Black Mountain Branch before Rob left: "Hahaha! What the bird? Small world indeed! Tell Sister Patterson #2 that I thank her for finding my grandma:)." Regarding one of his contacts, Rob said, "If you could go and do a session at the temple and put Jillean's name on the prayer role, and maybe pray for her as well, that would really help out a lot! I'm hoping the baptism goes well. She's still on board to be baptized this week, but she seemed a lot less interested the other day :/. Like she just wasn't super stoked on it like she has been, so I'm thinking we're gonna take her to a member's house and get her to feel friendship and watch Meet the Mormons? That was the best idea I could come up with. By the way, Jillean says she knows a guy that can get me a monkey! :D :D :D Not a whole lot has changed in the last week, though. Took a nice spill on the bike and blew out a few tires. haha. But that's pretty normal ;). The Sandman (Elder Sandbakken's new alias) was like 'DUDE! You ok?' bahaha. I'm like, 'O, I'm fine. It's not the first time.' ^.^ Getting pretty sick of bikes, but O well, it's good for me. Elder Sandbakken makes a mean breakfast, which is really nice! O, and we cooked chicken-in-dumplings yesterday! Tasted close to home, but not quite as good;) I don't know how you fold those darn croissants so well! Things are good here, though. It's finally starting to cool down, I think. Been pretty overcast this last week. We got rained on HARD the last few days. It's kinda fun, though, trekkin' through the rain doing the Lord's work. On Tuesday I met this crazy guy. haha! He was wild! He was ranting and raving about Joseph Smith and how awesome we are. Needless to say he was wasted, but still quite entertaining. He literally stopped traffic in the middle of the street to yell about Joseph Smith to people. He dragged us into a bar and stopped everyone from what they were doing to say a prayer. O, man, this guy was hilarious. Highlight of my mission so far. lol. I'll send you a picture. Tell Baxter I miss him so so so so so so SO much! Lol. My monkey is gonna be so cool, though. You have no idea! Baxter is going to love her."
This is a picture of Rob with the gentleman who advocated loudly for Joseph Smith. I am guessing he is not a park ranger.

Monday, October 5, 2015

General Conference Applied

Left: Rob with Ralph. As we watched General Conference this weekend, we wondered about Rob's experience: was he loving the messages more than ever, or dozing through them? We got our answer in his emails today. Here are his thoughts: "Conference was killer! It's funny, Elder Sanbakken and I were talking about how like at home you look at the clock and you're like 'UGHHHHH! When is this gonna be over? He's been talking foereverrrr!' haha. But here it's like, O.O 'It's already been two hours!? Things just started getting good!' lol. It's quite the change. I really loved how someone (I don't remember who) talked about how we need to see everyone as children of God. Like, how He's EVERYONE'S Father, so we should look at these people as such. We went and did some contacting afterwards, and met this guy who had gone to the states to take a class on Bible knowledge, or something like that. The guy knew his stuff and normally I would just turn the bashing switch on, just start going to town like, 'O, ya? Well I bet you didn't know THIS!' haha. I know I'm awful, but sometimes people need to be put in their place. But instead I just looked at him as a child of God, like I was told to do, and everything came out like clockwork. The Spirit was there and we were able to teach him and instead of being stand-offish, he was actually like, 'Well, that's a really good point. I didn't think of it like that.' Things just kinda worked out, so we're gonna see him again. I'm pretty excited for it. But the absolute highlight of the week was Jillean came to Saturday session, and during the afternoon session she was like, 'I have to go soon, cuz I wanna meet up with some friends,' and I told her to 'just stay for Jeffrey R. Holland, he always kills it,' so she did, and O MY GOODNESS! So inspired! If you don't remember it, Elder Holland spoke on the immense respect he has for a mother's love and care, and it touched Jillian and she loved it. So cool. But ya, that was my spiritual moment of the week. The theme I got from Conference was to obey, obey, obey. I like how someone put, 'It's easy to be skeptical, the hard thing is to be obedient when we don't know why we need to be." I like that cuz especially in the mission field it's like, 'that rule is 100% lame, I don't know why I'm following this.' But everything is for a purpose, you know? I also love when it talked about praying for what you need and you'll receive an answer. And to avoid all the 'loud' chatter in your head and listen to the still small voice. Sometimes I have a hard time discerning between my worldly desires and what the Holy Ghost is trying to tell me. I've been thinking a lot about the scripture in Galatians that talks about the fruits of the Spirit, and have been using it with my investigators in the first lesson when I ask them to pray. Pretty good stuff. Speaking of that, I am having like a downpour of people ready to be baptized. Lol. It came out of nowhere, but everybody is all of a sudden like on board. I don't know what happened, but it's pretty cool. I had kind of a personal revelation when I prayed that night after Saturday session, about getting answers, that told me to get back into the habit of getting in shape. So I guess that's what I'm gonna do. Right after I make myself some chicken-in-dumplings. bahaha. I finally found some of those croissants. Jillian found 'em for me, and she says she's even gonna make us Thanksgiving dinner :0. So stoked! Haha. O ya! How's Baxter!? Poor Baxter, what a good boy. Speaking of Baxter, I found like a HUGE dog. Lol. So obviously we had to challenge each other to pet it. And I won, of course, which almost cost me a finger. bahaha. I was like, 'Hey, what's your dog's name?' The dog's owner was like, 'his name is Ralph.' I continued to ask her if he was friendly, and she was like, 'I think he's bipolar, cuz his mood is always changing.' So I got a few pics with him, then as I was walking away, he jumped at my face and tried to take a bit out of me. Good thing the rope was just long enough around his neck to miss my nose. ahaha. O Ralph, what a crazy pooch. Hope all is well out there in beautiful San Diego. Thanks for the support. Sometimes it's the only thing keeping me going, so thanks. I really do appreciate it! One love Jah bless.