So first off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY ABBY!!!! Can't believe you're already 10! ;) Haha no I'm jokin. But a teenager now huh? Crazy!
Second, thank you Grandma for the pictures! They're great! And thank you Aunt Bev for the wedding announcement! I never really got one for Adam and Stef, but it's all good. I can wait.
So a little more about my companion. I don't know how much I explained about him. He's from Meridian, Idaho. He's one of 7 children. His family goes boy, girl, boy, girl, boy, girl, boy. What are the odds! Just kidding I already know because I got a B in stats! Haha but he plays the guitar, he crochets a blanket every day during lunch and after planning. He's a really cool guy! He gets me out and running every morning. We're now running close to 4 miles a day. It sucks! Haha but it's good for me. And I make sure I sprint as much of it as I can at the end so that I don't come back slow. Haha but he's a really hard worker and he knows the scriptures really well! He's been out for 5 months now. Lets see.... Oh he loves to eat healthy! So when we go over to members houses they usually have really healthy things for us. Even the pizza is veggie haha but it's good! He really is such a great guy!
So Monday we had a lesson with Daniel Griffin. We were hoping his wife would sit in on it too, but she stayed with the kids so we only taught Daniel. A family in our branch, the Carnegies who owned the Brick Oven pizza place in St. George for a while, came with us and did an amazing job at fellowshipping them and helping us teach the lesson! The Griffins really seem to like them so they'll be coming back with us tonight to teach the plan of salvation. We're really hoping his wife, Austin, sits in on it with us! He's Baptist and she's Methodist. I can't remember if I told you guys, but there are 13 Baptist churches here in Blanchard, and Blanchard isn't very big at all. Google Earth it and see for yourself! Haha so it's fun working with them!
Tuesday we had a lesson with Danny and Laura Lee. They live with their grandpa, David, who isn't active. He's a great guy and has a testimony, but he chose to let the girls choose where to go to church, so he took them to a bunch of different churches and they chose the Baptist church with a bunch of their friends. But we taught the restoration and it went ok. They're twins and they're 13. Saturday we taught the Plan of Salvation. We had the pieces that we lay out to kinda help show them. We taught them that their spirits lived with God before they came here, that they're on this earth to learn, grow, and prepare to meet God, about the spirit world and how that's the place we go before we are judged, and how people who haven't had a chance to hear the gospel can be taught there. Then we talked about the degrees of glory from 1 Corinthians 15:40-42. We taught them more about baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost. We explained that having the gift of the Holy Ghost was like having that really good warm feeling you get when you do something good all the time. They said they would be baptized on August 31st! So we're going to work with them to get to that date so that can happen!
Wednesday we met with the Pitmans again. Time was cut short so we didn't get to do much, but they fed us on Saturday. We had a much better opportunity to talk to them then too. They understand the priesthood, and it's the power and authority given to man to act in God's name, and to do things such as baptism. They know that it's necessary, but they don't know who has it. We're trying to get them to understand that it's passed down to those in our church, but they think that anyone who is trying to preach the word of God can have it. So we showed them Hebrews 5:4 "No man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God as was Aaron." I've been doing some research in personal study about how Aaron was called. In Exodus, I can't remember the chapter and verse off the top of my head right now, but it talks about how God told Moses to ordain Aaron to the office of Priest, and gave him the everlasting priesthood. We showed all of this to them, and I showed them my line of authority. We'll keep working with them!
Thursday we did some tornado cleanup for a member. We used sludge hammers to knock out their deck behind their house, and we hope that we can get back out there to help build a new one! It was really fun though, and we had a really good lesson with them.
Friday was quite the day! So we get to district meeting and President Walkenhorst was there! We did personal interviews and he gave me so much council on how we can better get the members excited about sharing the gospel! We had a good district meeting as well. Then we saw some miracles! So we went out to Washington, Oklahoma. It's really really small. We had planned to meet with Michael and Tim, who we had met last time we went out there and set a return appointment, but weren't there when we tried them. Then we were going to go to another house that was right by theirs that we prayed with, then to another person we prayed with who was a ways away, and wasn't too interested. Then we were going to go to a less actives house and talk with them. So this was the plan.
What ended up happening was we parked our car at the member's house we were going to go to after the less active. They weren't home, so we went to Chuck's house (next to Michael and Tim). He was sick so we went to the less active's house. We had a great conversation with him, and he's working with a friend trying to get them ready for the discussions! We decided to try one more less active, and we talked to her and she gave us some raw honey from Daytona Beach, because they just got back from there. Then after that we went and caught Tim pulling out of his driveway. We flagged down his car and talked to him and set a return appointment. Next we walked right by our car and all the way out to that house that didn't seem too interested. We got about half way and we thought, "If we get the car we can just drive home after this," but we didn't. So we walk up and the car wasn't there. If we would have had the car we would have driven home and that would have been that. Instead because we walked all that way we knocked, and a lady named Jannette answered. We prayed with her and then she asked for the church's address and meeting time and for our number, and is letting us come back! We almost missed that blessing but because we knocked anyways we were blessed!
So on the way back to the car these guys, from about 100 yards away, wave and yell "Y'all Mormons?" So we decided to walk down and talk to them. There were 4 guys who were drinking and talking. We started talking to them and the asked us about the Word of Wisdom. We explained what we don't drink and why. One asked where we're from and when I said Utah and he said, "Aren't Normons big out there? The ones with more than one wife?" All his friends started laughing and said, "Who are Normans? It's the Mormons that do that!" So we cleared that up. The same guy said, "So if this were the door, show us what you would normally do." So we prayed with them, and we had a great prayer. Then they asked us what the difference between us and the Baptists are. We taught them the entire restoration! 3 of them asked for a Book of Mormon, and they all had us put our number down in it, and then they gave us their number and they want to meet with us again!
We had one more cool experience. So there's these people that Elder Owen had talked to before I got here and they told us that if the gate was opened then they were home and we could go see them, but if not then they weren't home or they didn't want to be bothered. So yeah the gate has been closed ever since I guess. Well we went to check it out because we were in the area (dropping off a couple Books of Mormon to a couple who are Penticostle preachers and they wanted one!!) and so we went to see if it was open. Well it was so we went back and we had a pretty good lesson with them! We'll keep on trying back but it was really cool!
Well hope all your weeks were as good as mine! I'll talk to you guys next week!