It's definitely been a memorable week in many different ways and I'm excited to share it with you! Even though you say your week went slow I love hearing about what y'all are up to! The fall colors are in full bloom here and its been very colorful with the abundance of trees here in the south. And about the Sisters riding bikes, they wear a skirt but they are told to safety pin their skirts to wear their skirt isn't caught in the chain...I'm interested to see and ask sisters how they like riding on bikes but we don't have sisters in the area that have bought bikes yet so I'm excited to hear how they liked it haha. You get to see a whole new side of Georgia when your a missionary on a bike and some of things you experience you wish you wouldn't have haha I have personal experience haha.
My week sure was a busy one and we taught a lot of people, saw many small victories, and had fun doing it!
On Tuesday, we started the week off sprinting! Elder Hooley and I went on exchanges and we had made a goal of teaching everyone that we saw and we definitely saw great results! We started the day off by tracting in an elderly neighborhood and shared many different messages with people that fit their needs. It's interesting when you get people talking about what they believe how many similarities there are between each other. It's been a blessing here in the south of teaching so many people about Jesus Christ who already have a firm belief in Jesus Christ, but because of incorrect understandings we look at different doctrine differently. You'll find a lot of people in the south believe that Jesus Christ was killed for the sins of the world and we are saved by the grace of God and no matter what we do here in this life His sacrifice saves us without any effort on our part we will be in Heaven when we pass on from this life. That all you have to do is accept Christ as your Savior and you're good.. Which is partly true, that Christ did die for us so that we can return to God physically and spiritually, BUT a key point to receiving the blessings of the Atonement we really have to try to be like Jesus Christ and endure to the end after you've received all the blessings of the gospel such as faith, repentance, baptism, the gist of the Holy Ghost, then you have to keep working and working at the gospel. Just like if you're trying to get stronger, the more you work your body out the stronger you get, when you don't workout your strength fades away. We taught a lady who is a very devout Catholic, but doesn't understand how we have the Priesthood from God because the Catholic church has an unbroken chain from the Apostle Peter. It was hard helping her understand how doctrines were changed during the time of the reformation and how the priesthood needed to be brought back from its original fullness. I love talking to Garnet because she really wants to understand the truth and is open to hearing what we have to say. The highlight of the day was teaching a man named Joseph Smith about Joseph Smith haha. We have a investigator who's name is Joseph Smith so when we explain the first vision and ask have you ever heard of Joseph Smith before? We all had a good chuckle:) We taught the family the Restoration and their kids asked if they could be baptized and the mom said they could if they believed everything that we had to say which is definitely what we should do! It was a spiritual lesson and we are excited to teach Joseph Smith more and more haha:) But coming in that night we re caped the day and taught 8 lessons that day and you could say we slept great that night!
On Wednesday, we started the day off by exchanging back after studies and we all went to RMT and prepared for my training for ZTM. I trained on attitude and how important a good attitude is, there was a quote by President Monson that says" Good timber does not grow with ease, the stronger the wind the stronger the trees." Without adversity we wouldn't grow but the only way we will grow is by having a good attitude. Another quote that I really liked was one you might have heard before "Happiness is a choice, pan is inevitable, and misery is a choice." The highlight of the day was a lesson with Jennifer Brumfield, Kelly, and Sister Newell. We talked about Jesus Christ and his mission coming to the earth but the topic of the trinity came up and we explained to them why we believe in the Godhead that they are three different beings and not 1 in three. We talked about different occurrences in the Bible where Christ is praying or honoring his Father. We talked about Christ baptism where a voice from Heaven said "Behold this is my Beloved Son" and Christs Atonement. But ultimately what we bring up in scripture wont change their belief that they has to come through the Holy Ghost, but it made them both think. We also taught Corey that night about the Restoration and it was a good lesson. Corey doesn't have the biggest religious background but he said that he felt the spirit when we shared the first vision experience which is whats important and we are excited for all the growth in his testimony he will have through the Book of Mormon.
On Thursday, we had ZTM and it was a great meeting! I gave a training on attitude and I did an activity where I placed a ping pong ball (representing good attitude)on a water bottle filled with Jolly Ranchers( representing good things in life) one of the elders had to flick the ping pong ball off the water bottle with three rules 1. He had to keep his finger up right 2. He had to walk fast 3. He couldn't bend his elbow. Those represented the problems in life. When you focus on the words good attitude its a lot easier to hit the ball than focusing on the ball itself. A lot of people will miss out on the sweet things in life because they don't have a good attitude, but when we do we will open the good things in life and they will be more enjoyable. I also talked about not having regrets when you go home and working the hardest here in the mission. Sister Cottle always said" Work your hardest here because when you're there you wont be here." It was a great meeting and all the training's shared were awesome! That night we taught Larry Hawkes and he has a learning disability but wants to be baptized we taught very simply and right in the middle of lesson I got a random nosebleed so I left my companion out to dry but it alright he could handle teaching alone for a few minutes, but I had to retire a white shirt because blood got on it.
Friday, we planned most of the day, but we got some fried chicken from Sister Cooper and she told us some funny stories of how she cut down a Christmas tree! That night we taught Dan and she is doing well, she has been getting letters from her mom that her mom is upset that she joined the church cause she thinks its of the devil but we shared some stories in the Book of Mormon to her and helped her feel the Spirit and she definitely appreciated our visit and we are very happy for her!
On Saturday, it was a pretty chilly morning to play ultimate Frisbee but it felt really good to be cold haha. So funny story that afternoon... So we had planned to tract a street and once we got out to the area Elder Weston had to go to the bathroom, after knocking a few doors he realized he REALLY needed to go so we decided to use it as a finding idea. Elder Weston asked "Sir, I know this is an awkward question, but do you have a bathroom I could use?" He said "No...I have kids" and shut the door..." We were confused that his response to that question was he has kids but we put 2+2 together and probably meant he doesn't trust us with kids in the home but the next door Elder Weston was able to use the bathroom and I got to talk to the guy inside which was good haha. We then went to a members home, prayed with them and then worked in their area. We saw lots of success and what was cool was their kids saw us talk to their neighbors and the whole family was excited to hear what their neighbors thought so it was great building that trust with the members.
Thanks for everything and I'm very happy to be in the service of the Lord! I LOVE Y"ALL!
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