Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Life of a Trainer 9-5-16

So this week was transfers. I got to find out who my little “greenie” would be. I am serving with Elder Thomas from Payson, Utah.  He is really cool and super willing to talk to people.  He definitely fits in here in Tennessee.  It hasn't even been a week and he is doing a great job.  He loves sports, but only one problem; he is a Utah Ute fan.  I guess I will just have to look past that -haha.  We had a great week so let me tell you all about it.

Monday we went to the church building in Hixson and played games and also went on a little hike to a rock quarry.  Later we had another dinner out on the mattress of one our less-active members.  She is a single lady so we are not allowed to go inside.  She doesn’t have a table that can be moved outdoors, so she pulls out an old mattress and we use it for our table.  It may be unconventional, but we don't care and are grateful for the meal and the hospitality.

Tuesday was our last day as a trio.  We went to see a guy who used to be a member and wants to rejoin the church again.  We also saw Jacqueline, Letia and their kids.  We went through the story of Nephi and his family with them which is where they are at currently reading in the Book of Mormon right now.  Later we had dinner with a member who told us her conversion story, which was awesome.  It was so cool to see how it all played out for her to join the church.

Wednesday was transfers.  We drove down to Knoxville to get Elder Thomas and then drove back.  When we got back, we had a lesson with a YSA guy named Zack.  He has been coming to church for 3 years now, but couldn't get baptized because his parents wouldn’t let him.  So now that he is an adult, we are teaching him and it is already going well.  Elder Thomas even made a few comments during the lesson for his first time.  We then biked over to Travis and taught him about fasting.  We asked him to fast tomorrow and then the next day at work, ask if he can get his work schedule changed.  We later went tracting and that was about it.

Thursday we had weekly planning.  We then did a lot of finding and tried to see some people, but no luck.  We were able to see Sisters Morgan and Valles.  We are trying to get them to come back to church.

Friday we did some service in the morning for a non-member friend of a member in another Ward.  It was pretty good.  We then rushed from that to District Meeting, after which we had an awesome lesson with two girls going to UTC, the local college in downtown Chattanooga.  They just showed up randomly at church and said they were interested in learning more.  So we met with them and taught them the Restoration.  We answered their questions and we had a great discussion with them. We then biked pretty far away down near the Georgia border.  We tried contacting a couple potentials and other investigators we had.  We contacted a referral and are going back this next week to teach him.

Saturday we helped a less-active member move in the morning.  We came back and had lunch and did some New Missionary study.  Then we went and contacted a bunch of potential investigators.  Our goal this transfer is to clean up that part of our area book.  Nothing came from it except being able to do a little clean out.  We then had another lesson with Jacqueline and Letia.  We taught them the Word of Wisdom and they seemed pretty willing to stop doing the things that don't go along with it.  We then had to bike pretty far to get to our dinner appointment at the home where we eat on the mattress.  We ended the night with a correlation meeting with our Branch Mission Leader in the YSA.

Sunday we had church like usual for most of the day.  Some of the members were down in Louisiana helping the relief effort to clean up after the floods.  The YSA didn’t have hardly anyone.  The congregation was about 6-8 YSA and the other half was the four missionaries and three investigators. We only met for 2 hours because of that.  Zack and the 2 girls came.  Their names are Olivia and Rebecca.  We had time to go and teach people afterwards because we ended early and Zach, a different investigator, asked us if we could come over right then.  So we got to see him after almost a month of not connecting with him.  Last time we talked with him he said church wasn't his cup of tea, but this visit he said he is going to come again and we didn't even bring it up.  It was awesome!  We will meet with him this next week sometime.  We did some knocking on doors, but no luck.

So in District Meeting, the training I gave was on setting goals since it was the beginning of a transfer and the beginning of a mission for a couple of them.  One of the things Preach My Gospel tells us to do when we are setting goals is to pray and follow the Spirit.  This applies to all goals.  Every single one of us have goals and dreams and we can make them a reality by putting forth work and effort. We first need to start out by writing them down.  We can have goals, but if we don't write them down specifically, we will forget them or change them to something easier.  That's why we follow the Spirit when we set a goal.  It needs to be something that is reasonable and attainable, but it needs to be something the makes us stretch.  There is NO GROWTH in our comfort zone.  Goals are to make us better.  We also need to make sure that we are reflecting on these goals regularly so we can always be thinking of them and they don't just get lost in the wind.  Reflecting on them regularly also helps us check our progress and makes us accountable.  If we have followed the Spirit with a goal we set, then the “natural man” will try and make us not do it because we may want to be lazy.  By being accountable, we may guilt trip ourselves so that we truly will do it.  If anything, we can also be accountable to God because He helped us set those goals.  Once the goals are written down, we need to make a plan.  How am I going to accomplish that goal?  What am I going to do to make it happen? If we can do these things, then we can reach all our goals.  I know that each of you can do it!  I am cheering you on.  In our District Meeting, we all took time, prayed, and then wrote down some personal goals.  I would like to encourage you guys to do the same.  I know it isn't New Years and all of your resolutions were probably broken a long time ago, but now is the time when we can start over - but with God's help this time.  Reflect on the goals you set at least once a month, week, day - whatever you feel like.  We can all reach our goals so that we can improve ourselves, but remember, it won't happen by us just sitting there waiting for it to happen.  It is going to take work and effort on our part and sometimes it may require us to do things we don't necessarily want to do.  We may also be tempted to say that we will do it tomorrow.  NOW is the only time we have and we never know when NOW will end, so let's do the very best we can with what we have right now and then make it a little better each day.  I know these things to be true, and I have the faith that we can all do it.  I leave these things with you in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Elder Ellison
My Little "Greenie" - E. Thomas

The Whole Gang - Love These Guys!
It's Not Easy Going Back and Forth, But We Make It Work
Last Day of the Trio

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