January 27, 2014
Area: Broadway 2 East
Well, it looks like you all had a good week. :) We had a horrible one.... :( just kidding! We had a great week! The week kinda started out interesting because we had exchanges with other missionaries. But not just any exchanges, we had super exchanges! Meaning that all of us ended up having a different companion--one that we have never worked with before. We had me leaving our area, and joining our district leader and another missionary (who was from our 3rd area with elders). Then to end the mix, the 2 companions of the district leader split up and went to the 2 other areas. So basically there was a huge amount of confusion :) until we all got into our areas for the exchange. It was good to work with these other missionaries. While on exchanges we taught a few people, including a couple that they found the week before. I also was taught a new way to teach the first few points in the first lesson, so we tried it and it worked great!
During the week we decided to try a few different ways to find people to teach and then we used the new way we found to teach lesson 1. We were able to interest a lot of new people. This week, something that I found the most interesting is how God brings about miracles. On Friday, we ended up having a freezing day, meaning the rain that came the day before froze and the whole day was around 32 degrees. We went out, and school had been cancelled for the whole area. We visited one of our part-member families, and talked to them for a while(they also offered to feed us), so we got out of there a little later than we expected to, but we started heading home on our bikes and just as we were about to take a little shortcut, a guy called to us. We went to talk to him, and it turns out he is a member that lives in Utah, but is here for a couple of weeks for work. For some reason he didn't know where the chapel was, so this question was on his mind, and then he saw us, the missionaries. So we were able to answer his question....We never know why things happen the way they do, but the Lord has his ways-- and if we didn't eat with that family, we wouldn't have seen that guy, and he still wouldn't know where the church was. :)
Then later that same day we went with a member to visit some people that live in apartments near our house, but they (this family) were about to go out and do something as a family (because the husband's work was cancelled and the kids were at home too), so we couldn't teach them...We decided to go try a less-active/recent-convert that lives pretty close to where we were located, and usually can't teach her because she lives alone and we need to bring a member (missionary rules). We headed over there, and found her with her sister and her sister's boyfriend! Super exciting. We taught her sister and the boyfriend on Sunday, but we couldn't count them as new people for us because they lived in a different area, but when we went on this Friday, we found out that their baby came on Monday and they moved in with Casandra, the person we were trying to visit. :D So thinking back, we were kinda disappointed that the lesson right before visiting with Cassandra had to reschedule(the family with the dad and kids home because of the weather), but then Heavenly Father blessed us with the chance to meet these two again and teach them with a member! Modern day miracles! Then that evening we went to a couple that we were going to do a FamilyHomeEvening lesson with and they didn't have their DVD player working, so we couldn't do the FHE that we had planned. We rescheduled with them, but still shared a short message. Since we got out of there a little sooner than we thought we would, so we went and tried an investigator that we have, and he was home! We shared a short message with him too because he was a little busy but was willing to listen to a quick message. Then we still had time, so we went to a less-active, that we had never met before, and she was home and let us in. :) We found out that she only hasn't been able to come to church because her son was underage and did something stupid, so she has community service that she has to do...she told us that she will be done with that in a few weeks and will be able to come back to church :)
On Tuesday we finished teaching our investigator, Oscar, the Plan of Salvation and he had the biggest breakthrough at the end of the lesson. He realized that God brought us into the world in families, and he wanted us to leave as families. He said that he wanted to do what was necessary to live in the Celestial kingdom with his family! :D And, yesterday (Sunday) we had the best experience ever. We brought a member to a lesson with Oscar and we watched the movie, The Testaments. We felt the spirit really strong, and Oscar, and each of us were in tears. We each bore our testimony to him, and we invited him to be baptized and he accepted! We explained to him that by "following the example of Jesus Christ" he, Oscar, can live with his family with God and Jesus, just like he had realized when he had a breakthrough during our Plan of Salvation lesson. We invited him to make February 22nd the date for his baptism, and he accepted, and said he wanted one of the first missionaries who taught him to baptize him.
And a funny note is that one of the English-speaking missionaries just walked up to me and asked if I had a sister that just got married to a guy from San Diego a month ago. The sister is in the English speaking companionship that works in the same area as me. It turns out that she is from San Diego, and Ryan is in her home ward, and she basically grew up with him... And another elder that is in our zone is named Elder Bolanos, and he is from the same stake as the Heim's, and he knows all of them a little. How small this world is!! It's so crazy!
Finally--The weather here is crazier than the weather in Utah and California...it was great weather Mon-Wed, then Thurs was cold and rainy, then Fri was frozen, then Sat-today was nice again... It is supposed to snow Tuesday though! :D
I love you guys
Elder Stanley Scott Dye