Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Attending the Houston Texas Temple

Letter #43
June 23, 2014
Area: Broadway 2- Central
Companion: Petersen

This week really felt super long until today is weird how that works. We have had a pretty good week, so it wasn't that bad. We found some more new people and we got to teach some people we found last week. The highlight of our week was the Houston temple trip that President Crawford set up for us. it was a special session with the temple president.  He talked with us for an hour beforehand to have us look for things in the video and to think about some questions during the session to help us learn more from the endowment session. I really learned a lot, my brain was having troubles working the rest of the day because I was trying to process all that I learned... [ In the temple we learn more about the life of Jesus Christ and how we can become more like Him and our Heavenly Father.  Here is a link for learning more about the Life of Jesus Christ.  Also a link that goes to the Houston Texas temple information page

I really don't know what to say about the week-- the number of lessons weren't very high, and I have been thinking of many ways to try to get them up.  We need to get this area progressing, so we are just in the starting of that process. There is great hope and excitement in doing what we can to help this area.

1) Broadway 2 is probably one of the best wards about helping the missionary efforts.  We haven't had a lot of people to go see and we haven't had any member-present lessons work out last week, or really even since I have been here, but this week we have 6 members set up to come out with us and we have plans to make the area better so the members can come out

2) We do the normal missionary Pday activities: basketball, volleyball, etc... this last week I played basketball for a total of about 3 hours and by about half way thru I was running off of adrenaline, so I was pooped that night and sore the next morning.

3) I was with Elder Petersen in the Mexico City MTC.  He has back problems, so we can't even leave until about 3pm, which is hard on me at times.   I still love the guy, we get along great, and we are both excited to get the area going.

4) yes, flat tires, this area has probably the highest flat tire rate in the mission... I have had 2 and they both somehow happened in lessons... If you do send tubes, I would suggest the "Slime" tubes because it isn't very common to find patches out here for some reason...

I love you guys,
Elder Stanley Scott Dye

New Area, New companion

Letter #42
June 16, 2014
Area: Broadway 2- Central
Companion: Petersen

Well, I guess this week I don't get a letter from you guys....except Carolyn :P [note: his family letter arrived shortly after he sent this letter.  He only has a short time on the internet writing emails, so we sent his letter in the mail].

Well, to answer Mom's question from last week, my companion is Elder Petersen, he came out to the mission with me and it has been super interesting serving with him.

My new area is really struggling...we have very few investigators and I have really been looking for ways that we can improve the area.  We come to conclude that it seems like the way to do it is just through talking with everyone because that is really something that they have lacked and there are so many people outside. I know it will work because that is what Elder Anderson and I did and it really helped the growth in my last area and that area was thriving when I left.

I am really looking forward to helping this area grow and having fun doing it, but I don't look forward to all the flat tires that will come in the future--because this area has a record for bike problems. I have been here for a week and I have already gotten a flat once...

I love you guys so much and hope I have more to say next week,
Elder Stanley Scott Dye

God does hear and answer prayers!

Letter #41
June 11, 2014 (2 days delayed because he was transferred)
Area: Broadway 2 (Central)
Companion: Peterson

Well, this last week was very interesting because a lot of the people that we taught in past weeks were busy and we couldn't meet with them, but we found so many new people that it surprised me. We went to Crosby, which is the opposite side of our area.  We had a long day out there because it was really hot and we had to go finding for most of the time. We found a new guy and it was kind of a miracle story.  You see, we knew that we were only going to be able to make it out to Crosby maybe once a week, and so we prayed to ask God to guide us to someone He has prepared so we can truly help him. We knocked a few doors and at the 2nd or 3rd door, we were told to go try a couple of houses across the street when we asked for referrals. When we went over and contacted the first one, he opened the door and started talking with us.  He led us over to a table outside and we taught him a lesson on God and Prayer.  He really needed that in his life, and he mentioned that a few days before he asked God for direction, then we showed up. I really can't wait to hear what happens with him.
Sadly, Isis, the 14 year old girl, wasn't baptized.  Her parents pulled out on, I believe, Monday evening and we found out on Tuesday from our bishop.... I will keep hoping and praying.

Well, I guess I have more news for you, I got Transferred back into Broadway 2nd ward! I am now serving in the "Central" area of the ward.  I luckily did get your letters in time though, I got them Monday evening, right before leaving the area :) 

I am always so happy to see how you all are doing and I can't wait to hear more, and don't think I am neglecting little Ben, I just forget when I'm emailing..[note- little Ben is his newest nephew who was in the NICU for a short period of time until he could breathe more freely on his own--which he is doing better].

I'm sorry I didn't write more.  I can't think of what happened last week, it was such a blur even though it went fast. I promise to write more next Monday about my new area and everything.

I love you guys,
Elder Stanley Scott Dye

I Know that the Lord Touches Hearts

Letter #40
June 2, 2014
Area: Humble, TX
Companions: Anderson and Strong

Thank you so much for all of the birthday wishes! I love you guys so much! 

This week has been a difficult week for us in the area because of the rain.  Almost nobody is outside, but we have made good use of our time and we are loving having Elder Strong with us! We have had a lot of people be sick, so we haven't been able to talk to them this week, but we hope for the best! Because people are sick, we have had a lot of lessons fall through, so we have done a lot of contacting. We faced a difficulty when trying to go and contact people because the rain keeps scaring them back inside, but we have made really good contacts and found ways to be more effective in actually teaching people when we contact them. As you could tell from our Hour of Power results, it has come in handy having the extra contacting ideas. We had an amazing time doing it because we could do splits because we had one of the young men with us and we were covering twice the ground as usual. This week we made many good contacts and set return appointments with them, so we have a planned out week.

I'd like to mention an Hour of Power Miracle that happened this week.  While I was knocking doors with the young man from the ward, we ran into a woman who was completely closed to our message and wanted nothing to do with it. I just asked questions (inspired questions) to understand her position and to figure out how I could help her. After a few questions I felt like I needed to explain the Book of Mormon a little bit and help her understand that we believe in the Bible too. I shared that and continued talking to her, and she stated that the Bible was inspired, and the Book of Mormon wasn't. I felt inspired to share Alma 7:11-12, and she said it sounded like the scripture in Isaiah that talks about the suffering of Christ, but asked why it didn't say the same words. I answered her question by retelling her that the Book of Mormon was written in the Americas, and they understood things differently than the people in Jerusalem, but that it is still the same message given by prophets. I told her that we would love to come back a different time to explain our message a little more and I asked her when would be a good time.  She said that we could come back Monday (today). I know that the Lord touched her heart through my words because no matter how good I may be at speaking, I never could have changed her heart enough to be open to us coming back to share more.

Actually the 14 year old girl's parents called off the baptism, so we were sad about that last week, but apparently its back on for next Sunday because our Bishop called us in and told us about it. :) I can't wait for Saturday or Sunday!

I love you guys,
Elder Stanley Scott Dye

I Love Serving Others--Service fills hearts with joy!

Letter #39
May 26, 2014
Area: Humble, TX
Companion: Anderson

This week was quite different than the past few weeks that I have had with Elder Anderson, we had many chances to serve the ward. We are very grateful that the ward members are able to trust us in serving them.  They really showed it through calling upon us and asking if we could help. We did about 12 hours of service with ward members, especially part-member families and recent converts. I love serving others, and especially seeing what that service does for them. One of the sisters from the ward was coming out to a lesson with us on Wednesday, after  we cleaned up their yard on Tuesday, and she had great news for us. Her non-member husband, who has a very busy and stressful work schedule, got home from work Tuesday evening and was filled with joy. She thought something happened at work that day, but it was because of the yard, and she was able to tell him that we helped her do it. We had offered multiple times to help because he is so busy and doesn't get the chance to work on the yard much, but then we took the extra step and went to his wife to figure out a day to do it, it had a huge effect on him.

We had really fun experiences to get loose a little this week. We got to go to mutual and we participated in celebrating our bishop's 50th birthday party! The mutual activity was a BBQ and sports/games night at the park, so we invited 2 less-active families that have youth age kids to come! We got there a little late because the second family was taking a while getting ready, but one even brought a friend, so it was really fun and I got to play volleyball, soccer, and ultimate frisbee again. :) And the birthday party was a surprise party--he thought he was going to talk at a young womens' fireside thing on Saturday, but he got there and we were all in the gym--we all had a lot of fun. We had food, a huge "timeline" thing of our bishop's life, and then a DJ, and at the end, a mariachi band. It was really fun!

This week we didn't have many lessons according to the numbers, but we feel that every lesson counted and it helped the people grow closer to Christ and the church, especially because we took the effort to get members out to every set lesson.  Also we took the time and care to think of which members would be of benefit to help the investigator and to fellowship them. We were excited to bring a new person to church again for the second week in a row.  A few more people would have come, but things came up and they couldn't make it. We see miracles happen every day, and we really feel like numbers don't have the capacity to represent everything that happens and how the people are growing. Especially this week, we feel like we came to understand that numbers don't matter, people do!

By the way, I got the package and I am really enjoying the new bag, I already like it more than the first. And, we are about to start using the GPS, thanks again :)

We are also getting a new companion, we are getting Elder Strong back in the mission. He came out with me, but had to go home because he had a really bad bike accident that caused damage to his ankle and the ligaments in his knee. He has recovered, so he is coming out and joining our companionship this Thursday.

I love you guys,
Elder Stanley Scott Dye