Friday, July 15, 2016

Here Comes Summer! 6-27-16

So this week was pretty good.  We already are starting to see fireworks.  The humidity is killer.  It would be a lot better if I wasn't in slacks, white shirt and tie, but that is the mission life.

Monday we were down in Crossville again and we went bowling.  Then we played some basketball later and that was so much fun.  I haven't sweat like that in ages.  Ball is so life!  #ballislife

Tuesday we helped out at the food bank.  We then were able to see Jim.  He still has not received his answer, but we still have faith that he will.  He told us that Sunday he was at his neighbors church and the preacher said one thing that started to get things to click in his head.  So we are hoping that it continues clicking until all the pieces of the puzzle fall into place.  Then after that, we went over to Frankie's for his interview for baptism.  Unfortunately he won't be baptized for a while.  He is having trouble remembering and understanding the things we teach him.  So his parents wanted to wait and make sure he is ready and comprehends everything and we agree.  While people don’t have to know “everything” before baptism because learning is a life-long process, they should have a basic knowledge of the gospel principles along with that desire to follow Christ’s example.  So we are going to continue to teach him.  We will try explaining things in new ways and use object lessons to relate gospel principles in ways he can understand better.  It is going to be a slow, but great process.

Wednesday we helped out some members load up some wood for a less-active member.  Then we ran straight over to the movie theater to help the member there sell tickets.  No one could work at that time and they were swamped.  He sold out one of his shows. It was crazy busy.

Thursday we went on exchanges.  I stayed here with Elder Richins.  Elder Christensen went down to Cookeville for the day with the other Zone Leader.  We had a pretty good day.  We had about 5 lessons.  That is not normal for us in this area.  We saw Frankie again and went over a little bit of the First Vision that Joseph Smith received.  We then went to have a delicious dinner.  Some members made us dinner from their Inn's restaurant.  There were fries and they are from the west so we all know what that means:  They make their own, very delicious, FRY SAUCE!!!!!!!  Man, I did not know how much I missed that stuff until I had it again.  We then went to the Book of Mormon study class after which, we went tracting some more.  We felt lead to this one particular street.  As we knocked on doors, we knocked on the door of a less-active member.  I had no idea that they lived there.  It was an old lady and she was sick.  We were able to give her a blessing and I performed the anointing.  It was awesome to see that we were led to her house.

Friday I conducted my first District Meeting.  It went pretty well I think.  At least I hope so.  We then got back to our area and we went over to see Frankie.  We asked him questions about our lesson the day before and he said he didn't remember at first, but as we went on and asked questions, he knew more then he thought.  It was awesome.  Later we visited a part-member family and they fed us ribs.  They were sooooooo good.  The mom isn't a member, but she is being taught.  We asked her if she wanted to be baptized and she said that she would.  So we are going to help her prepare for baptism.  We hope to set a goal with her for sometime in August.

Saturday we weekly planned.  We later went to a family reunion of some members, but there were a lot of non-members there.  We didn't teach anyone of course, but one of the members there said that someone asked who we were and they were able to have a “missionary” opportunity.  So just our presence sparked people's interest a little.  We then saw some fireworks later that night.  It was pretty cool.

Sunday we had church.  Then we visited a part-member family and had a lesson with them.  We were just planting seeds with the husband, but we think, in the Lord's time, he will be ready.

So in my studies this week as I was preparing a “training” with my companion on faith in Jesus Christ, one of the things that we shared was from a story in the book of Numbers.  The children of Israel are headed to the Promised Land.  Then Moses sends 12 men to go and search this land.  They come back and separate into two groups.  10 of the men say, "the land is amazing. It is full of milk and honey and just amazing.  But while we were over there, we saw Giants.  And we in our own selves are grasshoppers."  The other 2 respond with, "we have the Lord on our side and He has promised this land for us.  So they are bread for us." A couple verses later in the 14th chapter, the Lord tells Moses, "how long will it be ere they believe me...?"  “Do we believe in Christ?” is a different question compared to, how long will it be before they believe me?  We might believe in Christ, but if we believe Him then we are showing forth our faith in him.  He may tell us to leave a certain situation or go and do something.  We may not see the purpose behind it, but if we believe Him and have faith in Him, then there is nothing to worry about.  But if we only believe in Him, then we are not necessarily going to do the things He asks all the time, especially if they are tough or inconvenient.  So I ask that we look inside and ask ourselves, do I believe in Him or do I believe Him?  We must show forth our faith in Him and always do the things He asks.  Always remember that it is for our own good even if it doesn't seem like it all the time.  I know that our lives will be blessed if we obey those commandments and the things He asks.  I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Elder Ellison

Ball Is Life

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