Thursday, September 29, 2016

Craziness All Over The Place 9-19-16

Well this week, we had a lot of interesting, weird, awesome, crazy things happen.  It is still super hot over here - like still in the 90s.  If it keeps this up, our winter will be really warm again.  I sure hope so.  I also want to say Happy Birthday to my brother, Porter!

Monday we went up to Dayton and went hiking to a dried-up waterfall that is just cliffs now.  Some investigators of the Dayton Missionaries took us.  It was pretty cool and different than most P-days.

Tuesday we had Zone Conference and it was awesome.  We got some great tips on ways we can help ourselves to avoid thinking negatively or getting discouraged, to be more effective in our studies, and how we need to apply all the aspects of finding, not just one way.  We were introduced to 2 different new ways to find. They have not been added officially yet and we don't know when or if they will be, but one is social media.  So we might be on social media at some point in the future.  We also talked about the Spirit and how it works and how to recognize it.  It was a great Zone Conference.  After, we had a lesson with Olivia and Rebecca and we answered some of their questions from our last lesson.  We also had a lesson with Jarvis and went over the Plan of Salvation.  He is really progressing and we set a baptismal date for him on October 15.

Wednesday we saw a guy named Phillip.  We taught the Restoration and had a great lesson with him, but then later that night he called us and dropped us.  During that lesson though, he asked us if we believed in aliens.  Elder Thomas said, “Yes……” not knowing where he was going with that.  He then proceeded to tell us that a few months ago he had been abducted by aliens almost every day for a month.  He said they stuck needles into different parts of his body and told him something that he would only remember when it was time to say it.  He also said he heard something about the year 2021, but that's all he remembers being told.  Elder Thomas and I had no idea how to respond to that so, after a long, awkward pause, we moved on with the lesson.  So that was interesting.  Later we met with the Jaqueline and Letia’s family again.  We talked about fasting and how it can help us receive answers to our prayers and receive help and guidance from God.  It was a pretty good lesson for the most part.  We were riding over The Walking Bridge after dinner and saw the Young Men playing Ultimate Frisbee in the park down below so we went to say hi.  They invited us to play and when people looked over, they saw a bunch of people dressed in athletic wear and then they saw two business looking guys in white shirts and ties playing.  I was sweating so much after that.  It was fun though.

Thursday we did a lot of finding and clearing up our Area Book.  Later that night we played basketball with an investigator and a young man from the Branch.  We are hoping to get a bigger turn out next time.

Friday was weekly planning and then we went out to find people.  After a while of that, we had another lesson with Olivia and Rebecca.  We taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  As we were getting to the principle of baptism, Elder Thomas just “drops the mic on them” and asked them to be baptized without explaining what it was.  It was pretty funny to me and it totally caught them off guard so I tried to back-up and explain what it was and what we were asking them. They agreed to "put a pin in it" on Oct. 22.  Even Rebecca agreed which is awesome since she wasn't interested in that at all to start with.  She also said that she is wanting to move back towards religion and this is a good way to do it.  Olivia says that this is something she wants to do, her only problem will be telling her family.  They are both doing awesome.  Later we had a dinner and a lesson with a 9yr old girl.  Her mom is a less-active member and wants her to take the discussions.  Let me just say, this girl has the shortest attention span I have ever seen!  She also is a little annoying (sorry), but that is for us to learn patience and kindness.  It was a serious struggle to barely get through trying to explain about our loving Heavenly Father, families, and prophets.  At one point I looked at Elder Thomas, indicating it was his turn to teach a little, and he looked at me like a “deer in headlights.”  He started teaching, but had no idea how to teach a 9yr. old or keep her attention.  I eventually took over, but I could just see he had no clue what to do.  That part was a little funny, but we can work on that.  Later that night, we were in the church (which is about 30 steps away from our apartment) and we were planning.  We then heard a big bang and ran down to the intersection nearby.  We saw a Domino’s Pizza car with its rear bumper ripped off and a motorcycle behind it on the road with some people trying to turn it off.  Then about 10 yards away from the bike was a guy rolling on the ground and grunting in pain with people trying to help him.  He had hit the Dominos guy as the Dominos guy was turning.  We helped some other people move the bike off the road.  That was one heavy bike because we were struggling and there was about 8 of us trying to lift it.  The 911 crew came and we watched for a bit until they took the guy into the ambulance.  We suspect he broke some ribs and maybe a leg too, near his shin.  So that was interesting to be a part of and it was good that no one was seriously mangled.

Saturday we went with our Branch Mission Leader, Bro Smith, to see Dean.  He hasn't been feeling well the last few weeks so we wanted to see him.  He shared with us a bunch of his feelings on why he thinks he is not feeling well and everything he was sharing and the solutions he was finding all led back to one thing; attending church.  We helped him understand that the Lord will bless us when we obey and then we gave him a blessing.  Then we saw just Jacqueline afterwards and had a great lesson with her.  We helped her to see that after baptism, nothing we did in our past matters, it is a new start.  I just love that part.

Sunday it rained like all day.  After our 2 churches, we had a couple lessons with some investigators. That's about my week.

So I meant to write about this last week, but forgot.  So last week, we were knocking doors and we knocked on this one lady’s house.  We told her who we were and a quick message that we share with everyone.  She said she didn't have the time and wasn't interested, but she said to us, "Thank you for reminding me of Him today."  That really hit me.  I have never been the biggest fan of tracting.  I think it's awkward (but you come to love some of those moments the more you have them), it's hard to get people interested, and it is the least effective way to find people to teach.  I know, I know…..I am planting seeds for down the road, but that doesn't help too much.  However, when this lady said that to us, I thought, “There is a lot more to this than just planting seeds and asking people to listen to our message. We are actually helping people remember our Savior for at least a split second during their crazy busy day.”  That gave me a new way of looking at not just tracting, but everything we do as missionaries.  My mind set has changed completely and all it took was one lady’s comment.  My purpose as a missionary is to invite others to come unto Christ and if it helps them remember Him during the day, no matter what their beliefs are and no matter if they will change them or not, then my purpose has been fulfilled.  I am still working on loving it, because sometimes it is hard to face rejection every day, but I love it more than I did before and that will hopefully change my energy that I give off.  The best part about the statement that lady made, is that it doesn't just apply to me, it applies to all of us.  We should strive to live in such a way that people literally see Christ through us, and in so doing, they too will be reminded of Him for at least a split second.  The more we show forth our light of Christ within us, the more happiness, peace, and good there will be in our lives.  I know this to be true and say it in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Elder Ellison

Car Rides - That's All I'm Going To Say
Payback For The Car Ride Photos

Hike To A Dried Up Waterfall - Pretty Cool

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