Sunday, February 5, 2017

January 30, 2017 - Alma, GA

Hey Y'all!

It sounds like it was a very cold week for y'all! It was pretty chilly down here too but its just a different cold because even though you bundle up the wind and cold air takes the frigid cold right to the bones. We had a few pretty chilly nights these past few days biking and walking but they were memorable experiences! sounds like the snow is bogging things down over there, but Im sure it is really pretty to see, and I miss the snow:)

This week had its ups and downs, there were lots of changes for missionaries all over the world with their schedule so we are adjusting to the new schedule.

On Monday, I emailed Elder Goodsell in Evans, GA and he told me that 2 of our investigators in Evans got baptized on the 21st of January which is very exciting! He told me that alot of the things we were starting in Evans are helping the area improve and progress. It was very uplifting to here and I'm glad that all the small tasks we did to improve the area are carrying out in a good way! That night we visited with a lot of our investigators and less actives. A common subject that we talked about throughout the night was how much God loves us and how God manifests himself to us in our day to day lives. With how rushed and busy we all are its easy to get caught up in the world, but when we slow down and think about the day we will recognize small miracles that God has blessed our lives that day. Its easy to look over and justify and say thats just something that happened but really its God answering our prayers and helping our walk through life.

 On Tuesday, we were trying to come up with ideas of things we could do to promote the youth activities on Wednesdays nights. We only have 1 youth that comes every week and President Peterson has asked that we find more youth to come to the youth nights. So we went to Bacon County high school and middle school and asked the principal if it would be okay to put up posters to get the word out for the youth nights. They said they would love to have them and so we made plans to make posters with the youth on Wednesday. I feel like it will definitely help let people know about it and something good will come from it. In the afternoon we met with Austin and had a great lesson with him. He told us that he told his girlfriend in Florida that he is going on a mission and she is in full support. Austin is already saving up money to go on his mission! That is the power of the restored gospel and the Book of Mormon! Austin hasnt been taught everything yet, hasn't fully read the Book of Mormon yet but because of the spirit he feels whenever he reads it he knows its true! The gospel changes people and changes lives. The power of Christ will conquer any fear or any doubt that we have in ourselves. Christ provides hope and a brighter future. We are so proud of Austin and we are continuing to work with him. He told us "Everyone in the world needs to read 1 Nephi chapter 10! There's no way how this Book cant be true there are so many things that are so perfect in it it has to be from God." We are super excited for him and his enthusiasm to learn more and more! It was a very chilly walk that night, we didn't bring jackets with us because it was in the 50's when left but then it dropped to 30's and it was pretty cold. We had a great talk with David. He got to know me a bit better but we started to talk about the fall of Adam and Eve. I've learned on my mission, a common belief with Adam and Eve is that they made a mistake and because of Adams sin we are all punished for it. In 2 Nephi 2:25 we read that men are to have joy in this life and if Adam and Eve didn't fall than they wouldn't know the difference between happiness and sadness pain or joy. It was all part of Gods plan. We aren't punished for Adam sin but we will be accountable for ours and Christ helps us overcome our shortcomings and mistakes.

On Wednesday, we watched the worldwide missionary broadcast. It was a very powerful meeting and there were some big things that happened. We had some daily schedule routines get changed around and reporting numbers is a lot shorter and we only focus on 4 key indicators instead of all 9. We get to choose when to do studies in the morning, when to prepare for the day, and we have an extra half hour to get things straightened out through the apartment. Companionship study is now at a time that we choose throughout the day. So if we want to do companionship study before an important lesson we are allowed to do that instead of in the morning. I'm really excited for this change just because it allows us to use our agency a little bit more and prepare us for life off of the mission. One of the most powerful moments though was listening the the Mormon tabernacle choir sing "Come thou fount of every blessing" and I felt the spirit so strongly! It was a very memorable moment for me. That day I went on exchanges with Elder Showers in Alma! It was sooooo crazy to be back with him again and to serve with him again. We had a cool moment where we had a mutual activity at 6:30 and it was 6:00 and our walk back to the church was about 40 minutes. On the way there I was thinking of running because we had some people coming and I wanted to be there on time. We started to walk really fast and after walking really fast for a good 2 miles this car pulled over and it was President and Sister Grayson. They gave us a ride to the church and it was an answer to a prayer. That night we also gave a blessing to a young lady who was in a lot of pain in kidneys. 

On Thursday, we had interviews with President Grayson and those went pretty well! Its always fun to chat with him and feel the spirit he brings into the room.We had a really good day teaching people, we taught Austin about the Plan of Salvation and every single lesson his confirmation this is true is getting stronger and stronger. He loved how much it makes sense and then he knew it was true because of the comforting power of the spirit. We had an appointment with a lady who ended up not being home and we weren't really sure what to do because it was late at night and it was an awkward time to go and knock on some doors. We stood outside her house for a bit before we came up with a plan of what we wanted to do. We then heard footsteps behind us and it was a lady who saw us across the street and just found out she had cancer. We read scriptures, prayed and helped her feel loved. God put us there in that moment for her and if we weren't there in that moment who knows what would've happened but it was an answer to prayer for her. She had prayed earlier that day to meet someone from a church and surely that night we were across her street and she had the courage to come up to us and talk about the trial she is going through. Memorable moments.

On Friday, we had an interesting day, we were walking to our appointment in the afternoon and a lady we have taught in the past was crying on her porch. Her cat had just died and she was really distraught about it. We then went to our appointment and she ended up bnot feeling well. Shiela said she diidn't have a shovel so we asked another investigator for a shovel. We went behind her home and helped her bury her cat, it was kind of funny because Elder Irons was saying the prayer for the cat and Shiela just starting talking when he was talking and we ended up not closing the prayer, but she just started laughing and talking about memories of her cat so it was an interesting but funny moment.

On Saturday, we were supposed to go to Albany,GA to help out with the relief effort over there but we didn't have a ride and couldn't go. I'll send some pictures of the devastation though because missionaries said it was pretty crazy there! It was kind of a sad day because we visited one of our investigators that got put in jail this past week. Its a difficult situation and I'm not sure how much to talk about but it was really hard watching an innocent man get put behind bars because of his mental condition.Its sad how bad the world is and the crime that he did was so surprising to alot of people and people know he didn't do it but it was just a bad medication day. I know I'm not making much sense but I don't want to really talk about what he did and its just a touchy situation.

On Sunday, we went to go pick up Austin for church with a member. When we knocked on his door it seemed that no one was home, and he didn't answer. We ended up leaving but as we were pulling away we looked back and Austin was running outside and he was in the shower when we knocked on the door. So he was able to come and really liked it! He really got along well with the members there and loves the church already! We talked alot about faith and prayer in church. It was comforting and I really enjoyed the comments on faith there.

I know the church is true, and the more that we serve and love the people around us the happier we will be. Look for little acts of service each day!

-Elder Hill
#Storms  #Ourfridgeisbroken  #gettingitfixedthough!
Spiders down here are crazy!

Civil War Cemetery in the middle of nowhere.

Night Preachin'

The Squad - Alma, GA

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