Friday, February 19, 2016

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow! 1-25-16

So this week was crazy. We did some major replanning and we froze our tootsies off.   We also had an amazing miracle this week that I will talk about later.  So my ponderize scripture was Doctrine and Covenants 100: 5-6 which says, "Therefore, verily I say unto you, lift up your voices unto this people; speak the thoughts that I shall put into your hearts, and you shall not be confounded before men; For it shall be given you in the very hour, yea, in the very moment, what ye shall say." As a missionary this scripture gives me such great comfort.  All the Lord is asking me to do is go out and open my mouth and preach His gospel.  One thing that stood out to me is how it says that I need to speak the thoughts that are put onto my heart.  Usually I speak the thoughts in my head, but when I thought about this I realized that I am supposed to have these things engraved upon my heart.  I need to be speaking from my heart, not just from my mind.  When it comes from my heart, people will be able to feel my sincerity and the true meaning behind my words.  I also love this scripture because down here in the Bible Belt, we get a lot of “anti” thrown at us and run into a lot of preachers from many different churches too.  When they speak to us with their well-trained words and try to stump or confuse us, it is hard to know how to reply sometimes, but with the Lord's help, we are able to stand firm and bear testimony when needed.  In verse 7 it says that we will have the words we need if we speak in His name with meekness and solemnity in heart. This is His work and we must be humble enough for His direction and help.

Monday we didn't do too much really.  We just chilled in White House.  It is harder to make it down to Madison now that we have to switch the car on Wednesdays.  The Elders we were trading with got replaced with Sisters.

Tuesday we worked at the Bishop's Storehouse for most of the day.  Then we went tracting.  We had a fun dinner with a family as Elder Nimmer and they recounted hilarious experiences from when he was here in this same ward earlier in his mission.  Tonight we are supposed to get a huge snowstorm overnight of about 1" of snow.  People were freaking out down here  -haha. That's nothing!

Wednesday we had a Worldwide Missionary Devotional from some of the General Authorities.  It was really good.  One thing that stood out to me the most was Elder Dallin H. Oak's comment about how we need to pray for help during our mission so that we may be able to fulfill everything we were supposed to and not have any regrets at the end.  That is something that I definitely want to make sure doesn't happen for me.  I know it won't if I make sure to work hard everyday.  Later that day we got “antied” during tracting.  So that was fun.  It was worth it though because just a couple doors down we had an awesome Restoration lesson at a doorstep with a guy.  He seemed pretty interested so we are hoping to be able see him more.  We did get a snow storm, but it was just a little “dusting”.  Also, I finally get to start driving. YES!!!

Thursday was an OK day, but the night got way better.  We tracted for 2 hours and didn’t have any luck the whole time.  We got into a slight bash, very minor, with a preacher.  None of his comments made any sense.  Later that night though, we experienced a “miracle.”  We were contacting some people and when we were done, we still had 2 hours to fill.  As we started heading to the store, since we had ran out of food, a family’s name came to my mind.  We stopped by on our way and they were finally home (we had tried multiple times before).  We went in and were making small talk, just trying to get to know them.  We ended up talking with the dad alone for a while and he shared his whole story with us about the church and some questions that he has had.  95% of the talking was him, and we mainly just listened.  The Spirit was definitely there while we talked.  He told us that while we talked, some of his questions, after 12 years of searching, had finally been answered.  We didn't do anything really except say a few things here and there.  It just clicked for him and we knew that it was the Spirit teaching him.  He told us that he has never talked with missionaries like this before and that he was finally more receptive.  Towards the end, his teenage son was there and he asked him if he wanted to come to church this Sunday.  It was so cool to see the Spirit touch this guy and help him through his questions.  Afterwards, we were lucky enough to get to the store for some food because of what was to come....

Friday we had an actual, major storm.  Our area was hit the hardest.  We had ice in the early morning, but then for the rest of the day, we had a full-blown snowstorm.  At about 9:45am it was at 8" and by the end, it had gotten up to a foot.  We were told to stay inside and only walk to people who were close by.  Luckily we had the Cousin family nearby, so we went over and had a lesson and dinner with them.  So that was our day.

Saturday we couldn't drive due to the amount of snow so we walked.  We taught a guy we had tracted into and had a great lesson with him.  The questions he had and things he shared with us were exactly what we were there to teach him about.  We went tracting afterwards and during that, some guys were riding their ATVs on the icy roads and doing cookies.  A news channel came and interviewed one of them so we walked right behind him as the camera was filming.  People will see us missionaries on the news now - haha.  It was hard not to look or smile or whatever, to be noticeable.  We wanted them to interview us so we could tell all of Nashville of our wonderful message :).  We then had dinner and a lesson with the Holcombs, a part-member family.  We talked about the blessings that come from the temple. We think that lesson may get her to start thinking about it a little more.

Church was cancelled Sunday because of the snow.  It finally started melting a little and we were able to drive the car today, very carefully of course.  We just tried contacting people the whole day, but had no luck.  We did have to come in a bit early and park the car because the roads were getting pretty icy.  Mom don't freak out, I am fine and safe -haha.

So that was my crazy week.  The huge storm definitely made it feel more like home.  It was pretty funny because we wanted to help people shovel their driveways, but we didn't have shovels and everyone out here either has 1 cheap one or nothing.  The snow helped us – we knew people were home if there were no tire tracks in their driveway.  I definitely soaked my feet and froze them walking in it all day though.  But my week was good and I have no complaints.  Hope y'all had a good week as well and I look forward to writing you next week.

Elder Ellison
Snow - Yes!

8 Inches - Later It Got Up To 11 Inches

Bad Idea!

Snow Soccer

A Little Snow Won't Stop Us!

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