Week 3 8/17/15-8/23/15
Today was zone pday. This morning we went to Wal-mart and picked up some things that we needed. We spent most the day playing basketball and indoor soccer in the gym at the church. It was way fun! Then we spent the rest of the day cleaning and fixing my companions bike. He's at his year mark and has done no repairs or tuned it up at all. So we fixed his bike up a little bit. We are sitting in the local Sonic right now getting shakes cause we can...;)
It rained most of the day and made it super difficult to ride bikes and knock doors and meet people. It was a complete downpour. Texas rainstorm. Lot of water... So we didn't get out much today.
Tonight we were able to go take part in a charity event called A Tasting For Some Other Place. Look it up, I don't know what you'll find, but it's held in Beaumont every year. Basically all the churches and community organizations come together and prepare little samples of some sort of food. Then people from the community come and partake of these wonderful delicacies. Our ward here in Beaumont (I know!
There's only one!) decided to advertise the Church Welfare Program. So they served peanut butter from the cannery here in Houston with apple slices or pretzels. It was so much fun! We had all 4 of us missionaries that cover the ward standing outside the booth serving peanut butter and apples and pretzels and Books of Mormons and pictures of Jesus:) it was really interesting to see how many people came up to us and told us that they had a copy of the Book of Mormon and that they had friends that were LDS. We placed so many Books and cards that I'm honestly amazed. We stood with the peanut butter trays in the middle and the trays with the religious materials on the sides.
"Would you like some peanut butter? Here. Now I'm going to send you over to my companion so you can get a dish of salvation to go with your wonderful peanut butter!" Good times;) and the best part? We actually said that to people.
We are supposed to have a baptism on September 5th or 6th. We don't know who is going to get baptized that day yet, but my comp and I both feel that there is someone who is ready. I'll keep you updated with all of that... We prayed about it on Friday last week and on Sunday we met a guy who's been coming to church for about a year now. He works for Vivent here in Beaumont and he's ready to be baptized. So we think that it might be him that's our September 5th or 6th baptism. He straight up told us that he was going to get baptized, it was just a question of when for him. He's super cool and he has a lot of questions about the Church and the Gospel. He was introduced to the Church when attending Weber State. He's from Connecticut and has never heard of Mormons till he started attending college in Utah... Go figure.
Really not much happened today. It was a big thunderstorm today... And it rained all day. Again. We rode our bikes around a little bit trying to meet members, but it was hard cause nobody was home. And we couldnt contact outside cause everyone wasn't outside in the rain... Go figure. Had dinner with a nice couple not to far from our Apt. The wife found some baby kittens 3-4 days ago. I'll try to send some pictures home. She's been nursing them with a bottle.
Today we get to go to the temple! I can't wait. We get to go to the temple 4 times a year with President even though it's outside our mission boundaries. Last night was pretty cool cause we left the blinds on the window open, but it was so humid that the window just stayed fogged the entire night. But there was lightning all last night and the sky was turning blue every 7 seconds or so. And our window was fogged up so we couldn't see the bolts of lightning; it just painted the entire bedroom blue and white. It was way cool. I stayed up most of the night cause I figured that I could sleep the hour and a half on the way to the temple, but here I am typing stuff up... Go figure.
Holy cow! The temple was amazing! I was able to learn so much from it all! The church is true. The temple just reaffirmed that fact. The Houston temple is a smaller temple than other temples, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in beauty. It is an absolutely magnificent temple, as are all of them. The Spirit contained inside of them is the same. It is still the House of the Lord. And it's still beautiful. And it's still amazing.
Woke up this morning and had a district meeting after studies. Super good. We talked a lot about the importance of the Book of Mormon.
Truly a man can come closer to God by abiding by its precepts than any other book. That statement is true. The BoM combined with the Spirit is the single most powerful tool that we as missionaries and members can use in teaching. It's amazing! The power contained within is different than any other book. That is because the BoM is pure and divine and inspired. There is a reason that it has been revealed to this world in this time. That's cause the world needs it now more than ever.
We did our Hour of Power tonight instead of yesterday cause we didn't have time yesterday with the temple trip and such. Essentially it's when we tract for an hour. And every house we knocked on tonight, somebody was willing to talk to us about what we know and what we are doing out here knocking on doors. It really was amazing. We placed a few Books of Mormon and we set up an appointment with an older gentleman for next week! Way cool! Let you know how it goes.
Today we are supposed to have meetings all day. Yes I know it's Saturday, but it feels like Sunday... Up early and get to meetings
We had a mission conference in Baytown this morning. That went from 9:00am till noon. Then there was a leadership conference that our ride (remember, cause we don't have a car) went to. So we were stuck in the church till bout 1:30 or 2:00. But it was awesome! There was a member of the 70 there. And his talk was amazing! Then we had stake conference later that night. Or at least the adult session. It was way good! There were two of the 70 there cause they are reorganizing the stake presidency. Two different ones than the one we saw in the morning. The talks were amazing. President and Sister Drake spoke at the adult session on how to get involved with missionary work. The entire theme of the meeting was the importance of Councils. Counseling is how the Lord brings to pass His will on Earth. Read about Councils.
It's cool to just see how many councils there are in the Church.
We woke up and wanted pancakes. So we made pancakes. The weren't bad, but they couldn't have held a torch to Moms... I miss those;)
Stake Conference was amazing! They reorganized the stake presidency today. Elder Dan Jones and Elder Larry EchoHawk were the two general authorities there today. I know that they were acting in the behalf of the First Presidency. I know that they were doing the will of the Lord. It was amazing. The testimonies borne by the incoming Presidency brought the Spirit so strongly. As a missionary, it seems like I have an increased capacity to feel the Spirit than I did as a High School student and I feel that it comes not only because I'm called of God to serve, but also because I'm living the way I am. I know that if I had read my scriptures and actually tried to get something out of it every day back home, I would have been a completely different person. That's one of the regrets that I have about pre-mission life. If I had known what I know now, life would've been different for me. I would have been happier. I would've looked forward to the sacrament and church and seminary with so much anticipation and eagerness. I wish I had taken time to notice the actual important things in life. I would've feasted on the words of Christ, not only the BoM, but the Bible, the D&C, the PoGP, conference talks, new and old, sacrament meetings, etc.
There is so much information at our fingertips. Now I feel like an hour of personal study is not even close enough the the time I want to spend. There is so much out there that I want to learn and so little time to do it. I just want everything out there to be in my head so that I can comprehend it all.
Remember how I said we are teaching the guy the works for Vivent?
Anyway, his name is T. He's way cool. We have another appt with him tonight and we are basically going to sit down and cover everything we can in a few hours... He's been reading everyday from the BoM. We've been texting him various scriptures and chapters to read each day and he's super excited to meet tonight! He truly is an answer to our prayers. He is a miracle find. I forgot to mention that the night before he talked to us, we had prayed for someone to teach and baptize... My bad. Sorry for neglecting that info. We are going now, so I'll tell y'all about what happens!
And he's totally going to get baptized! It's way cool! We had an hour and a half lesson with him. All of his friends were there helping us reach him and it was a way cool experience! We started a lesson off with a blessing. One of the guys in the apt has a brain hernia and it causes him pain. We were able to bless him. Super super cool experience and T had so many questions about the priesthood and such! We committed him to be baptized on September 6th, cause he works on Saturdays. For the rest of you, remember when I,said that we had prayed that we would find someone to teach and baptize? Well we actually chose a date and the day we chose was the 5th of September...
We had picked out every Saturday left in the transfer. And we chose the 5th. But the Lord took us as close to His will as we would let Him take us. Make sense? We didn't even consider the 6th till we were in the lesson tonight. But He took us close enough to recognize that this was the person that has been prepared for that weekend. The Lord does answer prayers, but sometimes they aren't in the way that we are looking for. And He will take us only as high as we want to go. But if we want to fly, He will help us soar higher than we ever imagined.
Amazing isn't it? Alright, I'll bring you more word of T next week! Love y'all! Ive gotta go to bed now. Elder Leftwich and I are trying to be exactly obedient nowadays...;)