Friday, September 9, 2016

One Crazy Transfer! 8-22-116

This is our last full week of the transfer and we have had more crazy things happen.  I am back to having only one companion, Elder McLeod.  Elder Leahman left Tuesday evening and will be gone for about a week.  Last Tuesday a missionary in another area in our Zone was crossing the street and somehow got hit by a car.  We don't really know the whole situation yet or how it happened, but I do know that the car was going about 25mph - so not super fast.  The missionary is going to be OK, but he got cut up and was taken to the hospital to get stitches.  He will recover in the mission home.  E. Leahman is filling in for now.  A different missionary, who was recovering from surgery, is better now so he will come replace E. Leahman in a week or so.  Another Emergency Transfer - haha. That’s about 3 now.

Monday we played some games at the church and scared the pants off of the Elders in our District. We told them that we wouldn't be there when they got there, but we would unlock the church for them so they could have Wifi.  We got a weird Ferris wheel music box from one of the Sisters and took it up to the church building’s attic, which is pretty creepy.  Our church building used to be a home for soldiers during the Civil War, which adds to the drama.  So anyways, we were upstairs being quiet and then after 10 minutes we make running noises and slammed the attic door.  We hid up in the attic and start playing the Ferris wheel music at the top of the stairs.  We were still able to scare both Elders, just at different times.  It was so much fun!

Tuesday we had a Zone Training Meeting.  It was boring for me since I had heard those trainings already at MLC earlier this month and I listened to my companions go over what they were going to say and how they were going to present the training.  Still good, just a little boring because I knew all the answers and couldn't participate much.  Afterwards I went to the Signal Mountain area for exchanges. I was with Elder Westberg, who also switched missions with me. Not too much happened.  He is a Spanish missionary so I was hoping we could teach some Spanish people, but no luck.

Wednesday we did some service in the morning and then we exchanged back.  We went and had a lesson with Jacqueline and Letia.  It was pretty good.  We read through 1 Nephi 1 with them and explained what was going on.  Later we got in contact with a family who had been investigating the church, but for the last few weeks have been either gone or busy.  We just stopped by and got there right when they got home.  We went over the Restoration with them and answered questions.  They seem promising.

Thursday we weekly planned and then we had a lesson with two people who are members of the R-LDS church.  It was kind of interesting.  They believe that she has the Priesthood so that might be a difficult conversation.  Then we had lunch with a less-active member.  It was a good lunch, but crazy weird.  She spoke in tongues when she prayed.  She prophesied to us and she said that she was "teaching" us.  She said that when the spirit comes over and speaks through her, she just couldn't stop it.  I don't know what spirit she was feeling, but I wasn't feeling it.  So that was an interesting experience.  We then tried to contact more less-active members on our way back to the apartment.  We needed to pack up our stuff and head back to the Hixson apartment.  College kids were everywhere too, getting unpacked into their new living places.  So lots of new “prospectives” to share the gospel with.

Friday we did some finding and it later started to dump rain.  Like the streets were flooding and there were spots where you hydroplane.  Luckily Chattanooga is just hills after hills so water doesn't just build up over the entire road.  Then we had another lesson at Jacqueline and Letia's.  They read chapter 2 and even read more.  They said that as they read, it just pulls them in and they just want to move on and read the next chapter.  It is so awesome!  We finished reading chapter 3 with them and described what was going on.  They said they are going to come to church this week too.  We then went and did more tracting.  No luck, but funny experience.  We knocked on this one door and this 20 year-old kid came out and talked with us.  He wasn't interested, but he accepted a pass along card so we moved on to the next home.  There was a big American flag that hung there and kind of hid us where we were standing on the porch.  So the guy we just talked to next door comes back out and we see him.  He looks around, up and down the street, and then says, "Where did they go?"  As he goes back inside, we hear him say to his roommates, "They just disappeared!  Mormons are scary!"  We laughed pretty hard after that.  We thought about going back to that guy’s door and saying something like, "We heard you were looking for us."  He probably would have gotten freaked out.

Saturday we did a lot of finding; less-actives, potentials, and formers.  Then later we had a lesson with a guy named Dean.  He is preparing to be baptized.  We had a date for next Saturday, but had to change it because we haven't had time to finish teaching him everything we need to.  Then we had another lesson with a family we contacted this week.  The mom wasn't there this time, but we went over the Restoration from Jospeh Smith and explained the Book of Mormon.  We committed them to be baptized Sept. 24 when they come to find out this is true.  The dad asked us how we found out it was true, so we shared our experiences and tried to show him that we had to do the exact same thing we were asking him to do.  Later it started to dump rain again.  While we stopped by a less-active member’s home, we were in the rain less than a minute from the time we got out, knocked on the door and got back to the car.  We were soaked from head to toe.  Later that night we went and walked over The Walking Bridge and then into downtown.  There was a huge “Welcome to College” party/carnival that we walked by.  We also got a high five from a random guy.  It was pretty fun.

Sunday we had church again, obviously.  Jacqueline and Letia came with all their kids, which makes about 10 people total.  Dean also came.  So it was a good day for church.  All of the kids asked me after church when we were coming over again, which was awesome.  Dean told us after Sacrament meeting that he wanted to be baptized and asked what he needed to do.  So it was a really good day.

One of our lessons in church this week, which is pretty awkward when you are having it in the YSA because no one is married, was on Eternal Marriage and Families.  All families can live together forever.  That is one of God's greatest gifts to us.  He has provided a way for us to do that.  In the temple we can be sealed to our families forever through the Priesthood keys.  The Priesthood is the power that Christ gave Peter in Mathew 16: 19, "19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."  That is the exact same power we have today that can be used in the temple.  The temple is a very special place with so many blessings.  It is a place that we can get a spiritual recharge or receive help with something.  We all need to make it a regular habit of going to the temple.  The Branch President said yesterday that if we as members are not renewing our recommends, then that means we aren't going to the temple.  We NEED to go to the temple.  A Stake President out here had the motto of "Every member, every month."  He wanted every member of the church to be going to the temple at least once a month.  For people out here, they don't have the luxury of being able to have a temple 10 to 30 minutes away.  Some have to drive 2 hours or more to get to the closest temple.  My Stake President back home asked us to double our attendance at the temple.  So if you were going once a month, go twice a month.  Once a week, go twice a week.  The blessings from the temple are not just for us alone, they are for those who have passed on and didn’t have the opportunity to accept Christ's gospel.  They are our ancestors and our family.  We need to show them that we care for them, love them, and want them to receive the same blessings we have.  We also need to make sure that we stay worthy to be able to go to the temple.  When I have the capability of going to the temple again, I want to make it a regular habit to go.  More happiness and blessings on this side of the veil and the others will come into our lives and the lives of our family here on earth and in heaven.  I leave these things with you in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Elder Ellison

video
Learning to Play the Guitar


video


Scaring the Pants Off the Other Elders

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