October 11, 2016


Abilene, Texas


Elder Duvall

Mission Tour w/ Elder Keetch

Hey everyone! Sorry that this email is coming in on a Tuesday! We had a mission tour with Elder Keetch of the Seventy on Monday so we got to go to Midland for that! It was such an awesome time to be in the presence of a 70! We talked a lot about obedience and how it can affect our work as a missionary! He shared the awesome story (paraphrased for time sake) about a professor who had a giant beaker and asked the class if the beaker was full. The class obviously said no, so he got some big rocks, put it in the beaker, then asked them again if it was full. They said no again, so he pulled out a bag of smaller rocks, dumped them in, and asked if it was full. They said no again, he pulled out a bag of pebbles, dumped them in, and asked if it was full. The class replied no, as they started to pick up on what the teacher was doing. He then pulled out a bag of sand, poured it in, and asked the class again if it was full. Some started to say that it was, others still said no. The teacher pulled out 3 large pitchers of water and poured it in the beaker, filling it to the brim. The class then concluded that it was full. He then asked, "What is it that I'm trying to teach you?" Elder Keetch then asked us that question. After several responses he said, "The thing that I am trying to teach you is that if you don't get the big rocks in first, you never will." We then started talking about the different big rocks that we as missionaries need to put in the beaker first before we start trying to fill cracks. Multiple answers were given such as the spirit, being obedient, prayer, and planning. It was really cool!

Elder Duvall, the Lord and I are getting this area back in gear! We got two new investigators this week and one of them has a baptismal date for the 22nd of October! We're pretty stoked since he is nearing the end of his mission and is still seeing success of the mission!

Elder Duvall and I are doing a lot better, our unity of the Spirit is increasing as we strive to understand each other's point of view on things and the Lord has definitely blessed us for our efforts.

I got to go on exchanges with Elder Thatcher, Elder Hiner's companion and he is great! We got to go contacting and we talked to a bunch of cool people! We met this guy and he said no thanks I'm Christian, and I said, "No way, so are we!" and he's like no, you're Mormon. And we got to talk to him about what a Christian really is and he was really surprised that he didn't know that. He wasn't interested in the church or anything, but we resolved some concerns haha.

At the mission tour I was able to be reunited with a good friend of mine, Elder Garlick. He makes some pretty sweet ties and he hooked me up with one while we were there! We also took a huge selfie and it was Elder cook that took it haha .We had a great time while we were there!

Anyways, Love ya'll! Hope all of you will be able to find the big rocks that you need to fill in your life before you try and start putting in something that is smaller! Keep the faith and do what you know is right! Take one day at a time!

Elder Bollwinkel

1. Sweet floral tie that Elder Garlick made
2. There is a Buffalo in Abilene that you can ride (nothing in the missionary handbook about that haha. JK its a cut out)
3. Mission selfie for days
4. Reunited with my mtc comp Elder Lake!
5. Elder Garlick (the tie maker)
6. Pics with missionaries
7. Elder Simou (he's from Tonga)


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