This email goes specifically to Levi, Erika, Brett, Derek, Justin, Nathan, Hyrum, Maya, Emma, Joseph, Jesse, Becky, Aaron, Samantha, Amberlee, Matt, Max, Zane, Nephi, George, Sarah, Hannah, Brendan, Jeremy, Andie, Hailey, Madelyn, Landon, Andrew, Brayden, Kylee, Korben, Logan and Brooklyn
We have learned through the grapevine that our emails aren’t very interesting to some of you so I thought I would try and make this one especially for you.
We live in Indiana now. Some days like last Friday night the rain comes down so hard you can hardly see across the street and the lightening is so loud it wakes you up from a deep sleep. We have sirens go off to warn us of flash flood. We live right on the Ohio River which has so much water in it that especially this year has been flooding a lot. The water was so high for a while that some of the roads were closed. We have now had so much rain that the river is rising again and the parks down by the river are under water again. We have very large bridges around us crossing the Ohio River going from Indiana to Kentucky. The Ohio River is the border between Indiana and Kentucky.
There are fun places here like the town called Santa Claus where every store has a Santa in front of it and the amusement park with all the rides is decorated in red and green. They have an awesome Santa’s Candy Castle and the Santa riding stables and a lake with Santa cottages around it. The Santa Store has every kind of ornament, nativity, nut cracker and music box you can imagine. It is like having Christmas all year round. The town was named in 1856 and has the only post office in the world that has the name. If you mail a letter there at Christmas time you will receive a reply from Santa Claus Indiana.
Indiana has the Abraham Lincoln childhood home where you can learn all about Abraham Lincoln. There are lots of trails to hike, camping and fishing.
There is the baseball museum we want to go to one day when we have the time. We can get small bats made there. There are many deep underground caves to go through and see the stalactites and stalagmites. Kentucky and Indiana are really beautiful.
Grandpa and Grandma spend their days trying to encourage people who have lost the desire to come to church to find their way back. So many people have had their feelings hurt in some way that they think they don’t want to be a part of the church. It is sad to see that they have lost their way and have let something keep them from feeling the joy of the gospel. We also do lots of service. We have helped several people move, some more than once. Grandma makes lots of bread and goodies to take to people. No one shuts the door in your face when you are carrying goodies. People always love treats but they especially love the feeling that someone cares about them.
You can stop reading to the younger ones here. The rest is for those grandchildren who are ages 18 down to 12.
A mission is hard. Sometimes you are tired, sometimes you don’t want to work and sometimes you get discouraged trying to find people. Sometimes you just want to yell at people and say “Don’t you get it? The truth will make you so happy.” Sometimes you don’t want to study your scriptures but just watch tv or go to a movie. Sometimes you are homesick and miss your family and friends(especially your grandkids). Things just seemed easier at home.
BUT. A mission is also the most, best wonderful thing you can do. When you see someone really change who they were and become someone who loves the Lord and will give up whatever they have to so they can be baptized, all the hard, boring, giving up of things is worth it. To see someone who didn’t even believe in a Heavenly Father or a Savior become someone who understands the love that They both have for them and want to please them is the best feeling in the world. Better than being with family and friends, better than any tv show or movie, better than having all the time to do just what you want, better than anything else in the world. We have learned so much about just loving people as we have been here. We can all be missionaries by the example we set and how we treat other people but there is nothing quite like actually sitting down with someone and helping them understand about the gospel and how it can change their lives.
We especially want to encourage Levi, Derek, Nephi, Justin, Maya, Emma, Joseph, Jesse, Brendan, Jeremy, Samantha and Amberlee to set a goal to serve a mission. As each of you draws closer to the age to serve a mission, think of all that you have been blessed with because of what the Lord has given you and know that you can make a difference in the lives of others. We believe that we each promised someone before this life that we would find them and help them find the blessings of the gospel no matter how stubborn they were. There are people out there who will be touched by you that no one else can reach. Don’t think that you are giving up two years of your life to serve a mission but instead are trying to repay a tiny part of what the Lord has blessed you with. The growth you see in yourself will bless your life for the rest of your life. We have seen the growth in the missionaries we have served with. Some of them came out because their parents wanted them to but have learned how great it is to serve as they have seen people change. Some have come out being the only member of their family or from homes where the rest of the family is less active but they have felt the spirit and want to share it with everyone and they make super missionaries.
We know that you will never regret serving a mission but you will regret not serving at some point in your life. Simply because of how a mission strengthens your testimony and your knowledge of the scriptures and of the love your Heavenly Father has for you it will bless the rest of your life.
For all those friends and family who also received this email, the information is for all of you as well. We should ALL consider a mission to be one of life’s top priorities. NO REGRETS
Love to all
Grandpa and Grandma
Elder and Sister Fullmer