Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Home! - Gilbert, Arizona

A long day with lots of airplanes, but worth every minute! Thank you all for the adventure; it’s great to be home!

Monday, October 9, 2017

Tender Mercies - Paducah, Kentucky

Hello everyone!

This will be my very last email. I get home this week! I am quite excited and a little nervous. I am afraid I may have forgotten how to be a normal human being, but it will be okay. On my mission I have gained a strong testimony of the truth in First Nephi chapter one, verse twenty: “But behold, I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of deliverance.” I know that Heavenly Father watches over us each and every hour and cares very much about our lives. His hand is everywhere in many small and simple ways to touch our hearts. 

I have seen this again and again throughout my mission. There are so many days when the chapter I studied in the morning helped answer someone’s concerns later in the day. We have gone to visit someone right at the exact moment they were thinking about us. I have been placed in the right spot to bless another’s day. I have been so privileged to see the hand of the Lord working through me to bless all those around me. At the same time, I have received so many small and powerful assurances and blessings at the hand of others. It seems we always seem to meet the right people who know just what to say when I need it. The “shuffle all” feature on the iPad has a very funny way of always bringing up the right conference talk when we need it. We have been cared for again and again by the Lord. I love him and I know he is there. Yesterday I experienced something that really touched my heart. 

'Thank You' pies from the Sister Missionaries

Do you see these cute little baby pies? They are so amazing, but the story behind them is even better. You see the Sister missionaries made us these pies to say thank you. About 48 hours ago, they got a call explaining that their area is closing. They have to transfer over all their investigators and records to Elder Titus and Elder Shank. They have to clean out the entire apartment. Everything must be packed up and sent back to Nashville, and then all of the house must be scrubbed clean. The best part is that they have until tonight to do all of this. If that wasn’t stressful enough, Sister Falke became very ill yesterday. She was sick in the middle of church and then had to spend much of the afternoon at an urgent care. We have tried to do all that we could to help with the moving and were able to give her a blessing yesterday. We didn’t think anything of it - just trying to make their burden lighter. 

When went by last night to help them move, they had made us these pies. In the midst of all their stress and being too sick to move, they made pies! They were still thinking about others and trying to serve and show gratitude. I know that I would not have been that nice. I certainly haven’t been in the past. It seems I have a tendency to wonder why so much bad is happening and to wish more people would help me. However, these sisters taught me a powerful lesson with one simple act of kindness. Their actions reflect wonderfully on the character of Christ. Our Savior never did anything for himself. He never worried about why more people weren’t helping him or feeling bad for him. He simply wanted to love and serve others. In the moments of his deepest, most painful turmoil - the atonement - he was thinking only of us and how his gift would help all of us. I love him. I know He lives! We shall live with him again! I am so grateful for all that he has done, and I am grateful to know that his power allows normal people like you, me, and the Sister missionaries to become like him and to learn his character. 

I am grateful for all that my mission has taught me to become more like Christ. I never could have learned these things anywhere else. I love him and I love you all. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Elder Basham

Monday, September 25, 2017

Patterns of Repentance - Paducah, Kentucky

 Hello Everyone. We had the amazing privilege of meeting with Elder Gerrit W Gong and his wife. They were so wonderful. I especially loved her testimony. She talked about all the challenges she faced as a missionary and how she has been able to learn and overcome them in all the years since. She talked a lot about how wonderful and diverse life is. I'm grateful for all her teachings because they really helped me as I have been worrying about transitioning to no longer being a missionary.

Elder Gong talked a lot about patterns that take place in order to teach us. There are certain ways that Heavenly Father uses to help all of his children come back. Even though our personalities and
situations are all different, the steps back to him will be very similar for all of us. I am glad to recognize that the same things I have done before my mission and during will continue afterwards. All that I taught investigators will apply to me and my family in the same way. I'm looking forward to doing all of that.

I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Elder Basham

Glow in the dark dodgeball as a district

Monday, September 18, 2017

In which elder basham has his last zone conference - Paducah, Kentucky

It is such an amazing time to be a missionary. We have had so many miracles over the last two weeks. We have some of the greatest investigators I have ever met. They are honest seekers of truth
looking for the truth and they already know many members from the ward. It is going to be amazing to see them change and draw closer to the lord.

We had my last zone conference this week. It was very exciting. So many great things are happening. It would be amazing for a new missionary to be starting here now. I gave my departing testimony and
then had a departing interview with President Stone. Too much sentimentality all at once.

Anyway have a great week!
Elder Basham

We all came out together and we are going home together in a few weeks. I am happy to have served with them all. 
In order from left to right: me, Elder Jessop,
Elder Overfield, Elder Maxwell, and Elder McCoy.

Here is the superman statue in metropolis Illinois. It isn't much of a metropolis. But they have a super museum and their newspaper is called the daily planet so it's cute. 

superman statue in metropolis Illinois

Monday, September 11, 2017

Paducah Life - Paducah, Kentucky

This week has been amazing. We found so many great new investigators. Our ward is working together to make missionary work a priority. We have referrals from members. Our mission is jumping ahead like crazy.

We have a new chapter of preach my gospel titled "How do I fulfill my purpose." It is the single most brilliant thing I have ever read and I will actually use the things taught in it for the rest of my life. It replaces chapter 8 again so I never have to read how do I use time wisely. No more terrible weekly planning sessions. Life is great. We have Facebook now and we are using it to work with the ward and the members. It is certainly something very different from what I am used to but I am learning a lot. I am learning how to actually manage my technology use and be productive instead of just avoiding all social media. Things are great and they are getting greater. We will see many more miracles before I come home.

I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!

Elder basham

Monday, September 4, 2017

Transfers - Paducah, Kentucky

Elder Titus and Elder Basham
Hello everyone, I am still in Paducah for my last transfer. I have a new companion though. It is Elder Titus. Hope you all are well. See you soon!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Eclipse - Paducah, Kentucky

So today we saw a full total eclipse. Our area was right in the perfect spot to view complete totality. It was so cool. There was over two full minutes where the sun was completely blocked out. All you could see was a shiny silver circle. It was unlike anything else I have ever seen. I am so lucky and grateful that I could be here at this time. 

When the sun was covered it looked like sunset in every direction of the horizon. The crickets were chirping and everything was just amazing. We could see Venus and Mercury in the sky. They looked like amazing stars. I had an awesome time! It is so cool to see God's creations!

Something funny my mom sent me
Alma 30:44
"The scriptures are laid before thee, yea, and all things denote there is a God; yea, even the earth, and all things that are upon the face of it, yea, and its motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator."

Have a wonderful week! I love you

Elder Basham 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Is cactus a fruit or a vegetable? - Paducah, Kentucky

Hello Everyone

Guess who came and visited Paducah.  It's Elder Nez from Snowflake, Arizona. He was my very first Zone leader. He went home last January. If you look all the way back in time there you'll see a selfie we took then. He was visiting the ward and we were surprised and happy to realize that I was here at the same time. He is such a great guy and was an awesome missionary. I'm grateful to have known him.

This week was fantastic. We met a new investigator named Tyler on Tuesday. We came back on Thursday and he had actually read the Book of Mormon. He read the first 9 chapters. He understood it and thought about it. When we talked to him on Thursday he wanted to get baptized. He was ready to change his life and follow the savior Jesus Christ after only two days. All he did was read the Book and it touched his heart. This is because it is a true book of scripture given to us by God. It is a record of Christ and contains His words. Reading it is an act of faith that invites the Holy Ghost into our lives. It is showing Heavenly Father that we are willing to listen to Him and give Him our time. He will answer that prayer and reward our faith. 

The Book of Mormon is the greatest tool God has given us for missionary work, to unite our families, and to change our hearts. This is why President Ezra Taft Benson asked everyone to read the Book every single day. In his most recent conference talk, president Monson spent all of the three minutes he was physically able to stand asking and pleading with us all to read and treasure this gift from Heaven. I know I have been blessed so much by following this council. I know it will bless you too. I love you all.

Have a wonderful week,

Elder Basham

Elder Nez visiting from Snowflake, AZ
Elder Basham & Elder Nez January 2016

Monday, August 7, 2017

- Paducah, Kentucky

Hello Everyone,

This week was pretty amazing. We had an investigator come to church for the first time. He really enjoyed testimony meeting. His name is Warren and he is planning to get baptized on the 26th. It has been great getting to teach him.

Yesterday we got to teach the lesson in 3rd hour because the teacher left to go to the doctor in the middle of church. We just taught an impromptu restoration lesson. Although it was really simple and
everyone had heard it many times, we all felt the spirit very strong. It reinforced for me the importance of the spirit. No matter what we know or have experience we always need the help of the spirit so we can keep learning and teach others. I'm grateful for my testimony of the gospel and how it has blessed my life.

I hope you all have a wonderful week.

Elder Basham

Also a member did a caricature of us as we taught their family home evening.

Monday, July 31, 2017

A Miracle - Paducah, Kentucky

Hello Everyone! 

This week I want to share with you a very special story. It is about my MTC Companion Elder Hickson. He is from Arizona so he is actually the very first person I met on my mission. Two years ago we were little greenies sitting in sky harbor airport together not really knowing what to do.
Elder Hickson is the one on the left in the very front. 

This is a really special story told from the perspective of his current companion Elder Brown:

"Well this week was especially special because last week we got a text saying the temple president has requested that Elder Hickson and I go to the temple this past Saturday to do some temple work for them. We didn't question it at all because we were excited to go to the temple since it's the temple. Anyways we planned it out to go and the guy we talked to said it would be about 4 hours which is a lot longer than a session so we were a little confused but we went along with it...we went inside and the matron comes and says Elder Hickson the temple president needs to speak with you privately for a minute. So he leaves to talk with him. Come to find out he was getting sealed to his family that day and they had all come from Arizona to be sealed together as a surprise. Now pause the story and rewind back a while ago. Elder Hickson's mom was a member and married a nonmember guy. He didn't care if they went to church but he didn't want anything to do with it. After a long time and while elder Hickson was on his mission a year ago his dad got baptized in a lake right after a trek youth conference. Then two weeks ago his dad and his brother got their endowments taken out and they all came with his 6 year old sister too, to come be sealed as a family. I got to sit in and be a part of it with them and what an experience it was to be there. Other family traveled with Elder Hickson's family to watch the sealing and it was just great. Sunday Elder Hickson gave a talk on the Savior and how He helps and saves us and it was just so great. I tell you I was blown away and so spiritually enlightened by this experience. This is topping the charts for my mission. It really was tender and even though I don't remember too much of when I was sealed to my family it still made me think about me being there with my parents being sealed when I was 4-5. Unsure on the exact age but I had such peace and such a feeling of the Spirit in that moment listening to the words and hearing them again and being able to really understand them this time and take in the meaning. It reinforced for me my testimony of eternal families and made me think about how much I love my family. I'm almost to the down hill half but it doesn't mean less work or slacking, it means work harder, work prouder, work better. And do all of this through the Lord that will be your strength."

Now I cannot really think of anything more amazing than that. I love knowing Heavenly Father's plan for eternal families. I know that this plan is true and that God loves each and every one of our families. I am so grateful to have been born into a family sealed in the temple and blessed by all of those wonderful promises. I sadly take it for granted so often but I know my life would not have been the same without it. I would look forward to creating my own wonderful eternal family one day. I love my family and I love my Savior who makes all of this possible. I love you all and hope you have an amazing week!

Elder Basham 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Paducah! - Paducah, Kentucky

Hello Everyone!

Paducah is such an amazing area. I just love this town. It's just like downtown Gilbert, but instead of just one street, there are several blocks of cute little old buildings. We have an amazing bakery that's
been here since 1927 and it's just delicious. The Ohio River is cool and they have a giant mural wall and a steam train by the flood gates. We are full-time bike and bus so we actually get to just be out and talk to people. I am loving it.

We knocked on a man's door and he was just kind of hesitant and trying to find a polite way to tell us away. We just kept testifying anyway and when we realized he wasn't yet ready to let us in we just sat down on his porch chairs and invited him to have a seat too. He did and we had a whole restoration lesson. He accepted the invitation to read the Book of Mormon and actually really liked all we shared. It turns out he was more interested than he thought he was. If I would have feared or just walked away accepting that he wasn't interested then he still wouldn't know the truth about the Book of Mormon and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I hope you all have a wonderful week! Love you all
Elder Basham

Josh made us a rabbit on my last night in McMinnville. It tastes like chicken! 

My new companion is Elder Hatch. He is super awesome! 

Elder Tolman trained me. He was my first companion
He is heading back to Idaho now. We were both
greenies but it seems that I only have 12 weeks left.
Where did the time go? 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Paducah! - McMinnville, Tennessee

Well everyone it happened! I am now finished with my time here in McMinnville. I am being transferred to Paducah, Kentucky tomorrow.

This will be my first time serving in a Kentucky area although I've always thought Kentucky was probably way better than Tennesee. I guess I now get to see if that is right. McMinnville has been an amazing place for the last several months. I have loved the people here and really enjoyed getting to serve them. It was certainly interesting having so many different companions, but I had a great time.

Here was our awesome district. Elder Weight and Elder Wadsworth are going home on Wednesday. That is pretty crazy. I have been with them for a long time. Fortunately, Elder Weight only lives 15 minutes away in Chandler, so we will still have lots of fun together. 

Our Awesome District

Also here is an adorable kitten just because it's awesome. I love cats!

Monday, July 10, 2017

The Valley of the Promised Land - McMinnville, Tennessee

Hello everyone! This week has been fantastic, however, I just wrote about two pages to the mission president so you all get a video this week again.  Let me know if you like videos or not. Anyway have a great week I love you all

Elder Basham

Baby Alan
Just a funny addition to the story I told about Alan last week. Our stake president went to high school with him and found the year Book.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Alan - McMinnville, Tennessee

I would like to tell you about an amazing friend of mine named Alan. He was born during the Korean War to Charles and Joyce. His father Charles was an aircraft pilot during World War Two. Alan served as a law enforcement officer for sixteen years in 5 counties here in Tennessee. He built many of the highways here and has two cats. He absolutely loves NASCAR and will tell you all about it. He never wanted much to do with Mormons though. However, last November Elder Merchant and Elder Polson knocked on his door and for the first time in 63 years he let them in. 

He was rather nice at first but always explained that he never would go to a Mormon church or quit smoking. Thankfully those convictions never turned out. I was here in February when he had his first church tour. The next week he came to church. Soon he then out all of his tea. After a few more weeks I heard him offer his first prayer. In due time the coffee and the cigarettes both fell away. His favorite scripture is 1 Nephi 3:7 "And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them." He will tell you about how if God could help Nephi build a boat, he can help you do anything - even quit smoking. 

He was baptized on the 22 of April this year. It was such an amazing occasion.

Alan's Baptism April 22
A few weeks later I had the privilege of conferring on him the Aaronic Priesthood and ordaining him to the office of priest. But the greatest joy I know comes from his amazing experience in the temple this past Saturday. He was able to be baptized for his father and brother as well as his grandpa Elijah. 

 Hermana Waite was there to be baptized for his mother.

Elder Basham, Alan, Hermana Waite

Elder Basham, Alan, Hermana Waite
It was so powerful and I loved every minute. I know that the temple is the house of God and eternal families are real. This is the lord's work. It is the work of building eternal families to live in the kingdom of God. I love Him so much for this. I love the Savior Jesus Christ. I love Alan and I love this mission. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen. 


Elder Basham 

Monday, June 19, 2017

- McMinnville, Tennessee

Hello everyone!

This has been an eventful week. It definitely wasn't easy but we all made it through and I am very grateful for the experience. Elder Hlebasko returned home this Saturday morning. He is back with his loving parents and I know he will be well taken care of. I am sad to see him go but glad he is okay. I am grateful for all the time we had together.

Elder Hlebasko & Elder Basham

Elder Hlebasko and his parents

As for me, I have a new companion named Elder Chamberlain. He is a really awesome person and a great missionary. I can tell we are going to have a lot of fun together and get amazing things done. We thought a normal selfie was too boring so we did this instead. 

Video of Elder Basham and Elder Chamberlain

And then took a selfie:

Elder Basham and Elder Chamberlain
Well that is all for now. I hope you have a great week. Please keep Elder Hlebasko in your prayers. I love you all.

Elder Liam Basham 

Monday, June 12, 2017

- McMinnviille, Tennessee

Elder Basham & Elder Hlebasko

I decided to try sending a V-Log. It was a really good week. We were
super busy every day. However nothing specifically exciting happened.
I love my new companion Elder Hlebasko he is quite awesome.

Anyway I'll see you all later have a great week!

Elder Basham

Video from Elder Basham

Monday, June 5, 2017

Transfers - McMinnville, Tennessee

Hello everyone! 

You will never guess what is happening! I am staying in McMinnville again. This will put me here for about six months! That is really pretty exciting. This has been an amazing ward and I love serving here. My companions Elder Villanueva and Elder Carlson will be leaving to the Hopkinsville Kentucky Zone. Elder Carlson just keeps bouncing back between there and here. I will be receiving Elder Hlebasko. It's pronounced like Tabasco but with an L and a silent H. I have been told that the H stands for Happy so I am excited. Here is a picture of our district. 

Elder Neil L Andersen asked us all to share with you the conversion stories of our mission, regardless of whether or not I taught them personally. As I think about this counsel I feel that it is very inspired. There is nothing quite so sweet as the story of someone finding new the joy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that sharing these stories will help you all feel the love of God and see the light of Christ more. This letter from my mission president is the most perfect place to start. I love you all and hope you have an amazing week!

Elder Basham 

Dear Elders and Sisters,

One Facebook post. One conversation. One small act of courage. One family baptized and on the path to the temple to be sealed for eternity.

"Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise." (Alma 37:6)

"That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of the world..." (D&C 1:23)

Last weekend I was blessed to attend the baptism for the Tidwell family in the Dickson ward -- mother, father, daughter and son were all baptized. This is the family that was found by Elder Crawford's grandmother, Patricia Ironcloud, who lives in Montana. She posted a simple picture of a heart that showed up in Sister Tidwell's Facebook feed about two months ago. That one Facebook post led to a conversation, in the course of which they realized that the Tidwells lived in Dickson....the very town of 15,000 people where Grandma Ironcloud's grandson was serving his mission. Grandma then courageously invited Sister Tidwell to meet her grandson and his companion. She agreed. The missionaries visited and began teaching the family. Their hearts had been prepared. They were repentant. They received the Spirit and the truths that the Spirit testified to their hearts. And they were baptized.

Grandma Ironcloud skyped in for the baptism. I saw her face on the iPad when her grandson stepped down into the waters of baptism to perform the baptismal ordinance....there was joy in her eyes, as she became emotional at the sight. I will always remember that moment.

Over the last week, I've reflected on the power of one Facebook post. One conversation. One small act of courage. These small and simple acts led to a family repenting, being baptized, and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. This is why we are here. We are here because our Heavenly Father is preparing His children in every area of our mission to receive His love and truth, to repent, and to be baptized.

By small and simple things are great things brought to pass. If you ever feel small, insignificant or incapable of assisting Heavenly Father in this work, please remember that we all feel that way...and we are all that He has. He already told us that the fulness of His gospel would be proclaimed by the weak and simple. We are never too weak, never too simple, never too broken, for Heavenly Father to perform His work through us. He just requires our willing hearts and minds, our best efforts to work and obey and repent, our faithful attitudes, and our courage. He does the rest. He always has, and He always will.

President Stone