Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Week 68:A whole new transfer

Well...I didn't email home last week. It was transfer day, and we took over a new area with a dying missionary. When I say "we", I'm talking about Elder Streeter and me now. He comes from North Carolina. That brings me up to 3 East coasters(NH, NC, and MD), 3 West coasters(CA, AZ, and AZ)[Ok, AZ is pushing it...], and 3 Mid-Westerners(CO, UT, and NM). We came into the area with a little bit of information and an almost home missionary. (Elder) Zach (Barnes) hung out with us until leaving to meet the assistants to go to the airport. He was my second companion and a pretty good missionary. A group of us will miss him out here.

I got moved back into the Nampa North Stake.(I'd give out an address, but we're moving again soon, so just send mail to 1008 W Sanetta St) I've changed the wards I cover. Now I work with the 1st and 36th wards, so I've worked in 7 out of the 9 wards in the North Stake. We've got great ward leaders that are excited to be working with us. It's getting pretty crazy with these smaller areas. Another couple transfers and we'll be getting down to one-ward areas. 

In my last area there was a pumpkinman(a snowman-type thing but made with pumpkins), and it reminded me of the Dragon books from when I was younger. I also got crazy/lazy trying to eat that watermelon. I didn't feel like pulling out any other utensils, so I ate the watermelon off of the knife. It was pretty sharp, but I came out unharmed minus an upset stomach because the watermelon had gone bad-ish.

Last week's district meeting was about developing Christ-like attributes. Two scriptures stuck out to me as we were discussing that topic. Matthew 16:24 and Alma 38:12. Several different verses in the New Testament tell us to "take up the cross", but it never really explains what it means. That why I'm really glad there is a JST addition to Matt 16:24. "And now for a man to take up his cross, is to deny himself all ungodliness, and every worldly lust, and keep my commandments." I'm still working on the application of these two verses, but through the process I'm able to see the importance of what it says in 2 Nephi 28:30. We can't learn everything all at once. We have to learn "line upon line, precept upon precept". Everything won't come at once, but as we take in the little that we do get, it will prepare us to receive more.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Week 66: Only 6 more months until General Conference​!

You know you're getting old in the mission when people ask you how long you've been out and you say "about a year" rather than how long you actually have been out to avoid comments like "Oh! You're over the hill and on your way down!" Comments were already starting at 14 months, so I'm going to start saying "about a year" now that I've been out another month. There really isn't a good mission age to be. Anything under 6 months: "Oh boy! You're a greeny!" 6-10 months: "Well you're not a greeny anymore, are you?" 10-13 months: "Well now you're an experienced missionary." 14-20 months: "You're over the hill!" 21-24 months: "You're already on the plane, aren't you?" Such is the life of a missionary.

I went back and reread some old emails I sent home from a year ago. They looked a lot longer. Plus they talked about things more relevant to missionary work and attributes. I'll see what I can do to get back to that.

This upcoming weekend is transfers. I don't want to assume anything, but I'm probably going to get moved out of here. That means next week I'll be sending out a new address to replace the 3800 W Sanetta...probably. Maybe because I'm emailing this I'll be sticking around. Who knows? Only President Cannon.  

Like I mentioned last week, Tuesday was Dimitri's baptism. It went great. Now we're working on teaching his younger brother, Josh. This here is evidence to me of our individuality. You can't judge anyone based on other people. Dimitri was a deep thinker. It took him a while to make the decision to be baptized. Josh is moving along a lot faster. Differences in the individual prepare them to face different things at different times. It's not a bad thing. It's in fact a good thing. It'll help us come together later on.

General Conference was great. I've really enjoyed General Conference on the mission. This time we watched it at the church in case anybody came to watch it. Nobody did, but that left us with a quiet and peaceful environment to listen to the speakers and the spirit. For me personally, I felt faith, hope, and charity emphasized. I guess it's time to go back to the basis. My two favorite talks were President Monson's Sunday morning address and President Uchtdorf's priesthood session talk. I'm going to have to reread all of it several times. I barely scratched the surface of what I need to learn from this conference. Watching President Monson is always fun. He talked about home teaching during priesthood session. He rolled his eyes a couple times sharing not as good home teaching experiences. One time, President Hinkley's home teachers dropped by while he was there with President Monson and and President Kimball(back before any of them actually had the President title I believe). Then he told about Marion G Romney's home teachers stopping by for a second just so that they could report that they did their home teaching. Oh to be a general authorities home teacher...That would be rough.

Until next week!

Week 65: The best I had to offer, I don't actually have to offer...bu​t actually..​.

With yesterday being a fifth Sunday, we had a combined third hour class that we went to. President Mansfield of the Stake Presidency was there. He shared a training based on what he learned at Philmont. I couldn't find the video...I wanted to share it...So I looked again and found it! https://www.lds.org/callings/aaronic-priesthood/video-gallery?lang=eng#bsa-duty-to-god
It's a combination of quotes from different awesome people: President Monson, John Wayne, and Lord Baden-Powell.

Tomorrow night we'll have a baptism for a 13 year-old boy we've been teaching. He's pretty cool. Dimitri has been thinking really hard to the point of overthinking. He's making all the decisions on his own, so good for him!

Last night we visited with some members who have two kids out on missions. Both left in July, and it was their son's birthday. He couldn't attend, so we took his place. His mom made a delicious brownie cake thing. 

There's been a pretty consistent drizzle going for the past week or so. It's nice because we can still work in it.

Transfers are in two weeks. General Conference is this weekend. Next week's email should be good. 

Week 64: Ode to a missionary

As a missionary
one can be quite extraordinary.
It can be as hard as trying to write an ode
It doesn't always come with an easy load.
The things you learn
tend to help you grow.
A person touched becomes a new friend.
The reward you earn
isn't your purpose though.
Bringing others to Christ is your end.

This was one of those slow weeks, so I thought I'd bust out a little rhyme to give you something to think about. 

We had Stake Conference yesterday. I saw http://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2013-06-1031-ill-go-where-you-want-me-to-go?lang=eng that video for the umpteenth time, so I thought I'd share it with those of you who might not have seen it yet. Make doing good a regular part of your life.