Saturday, September 20, 2014

Week 1 Training - COMPLETE!

Letter #54
Sep. 8, 2014
Area: Houston, Central 2
Companion: Heath

This week has gone great! We have put in a lot of effort to find new people to teach and have had success in that. We sadly didn't have a ton of lessons, but we really feel like we are preparing the area right by taking a couple steps back to take steps forward with a good foundation. I really feel like the training call was inspired.  I have been pushing myself a lot harder to work on the area and myself, while trying to help Elder Heath learn how to do things right. We have taken a little time to re-do our whiteboard so it will be useful in the process of weekly planning, everyday work and planning, and especially finding out the needs of the different people we teach.  I have found that as we were doing it, we were receiving inspiration on how we could do it even better. We have also made sure that we take the time to contact and reach out to everyone we meet throughout the day. As we have been doing these different things, we have seen a lot of progress in ourselves and the few people that we teach. 

We have been getting along great as a companionship, Elder Heath really reminds me of Adam Ure, and we are working well and hard together. I am proud of Elder Heath because I can rely on him to do his part of the work. I know I am training him, but he is learning so fast and well that I have no doubt that he'll be just like a normal companion with experience by the end of training. He has really surprised me in his memorization abilities and he already has almost all of the Joseph Smith History memorized. I have really high hopes for him, and I look forward to helping guide him a little in week 2 of training.

I personally have been doing a lot better, I feel more focused and relaxed at the same time. Before getting the call for training, I was kind of falling just into the routine of things. I felt like I was wasting so much time because I was too comfortable with where I was at. Now I am constantly thinking of things I can do better, more efficient ways of doing things, ways to better the area. I really am thankful for this training call.  I feel like I have never been a better missionary than I am now-- sure I am not teaching a ton of lessons, but I feel like soon enough, we will have all of these things sorted out and have baptisms come. I really don't feel like I am training, I feel like I am guiding Elder Heath to be the most efficient, hard working missionary he can be. I am so happy and grateful for this opportunity I have to serve and to be here.

I can hardly believe that Linzie is already 1 and that Brianna is already in 1st grade and Jacen is already in preschool.... Time just flies too fast, I feel like I just got here, but I'm already on the downhill slide back into reality. The only things I could say I would be excited for are: 1) meeting all the new nieces and nephews; 2) having my good ol' big bed; and 3) being able to participate in choirs and bands again.

I love you guys, even though you didn't email me... :P
Elder Stanley Scott Dye

Evaluating life's 4 Loves-- How do I measure up?

Letter #53
Sept. 2, 2013
Area: Houston, Central 2
Companions: Spencer, Petersen, and now Heath

This week in the area has been great! It was a little unexpected to lose Elder Petersen from our companionship.  On Thursday he was called to different area because another elder was having medical problems involving the nerves all over his body.  The mission leadership/mission doctor ended up sending him home to make sure that he gets all the necessary care, so I felt the responsibility fall to my shoulders because I know the area and the people. 

We worked really hard trying to find new people to teach, trying former investigators and potentials, and we found a really good new investigator from a part-member family. He is really prepared and I am really excited to move forward with teaching him. We also had a really good experience going on splits with the youth from the area.  We found one of the friends of these two young men, who just happens to be a recent convert. This young man has been talking about the church with his friend, but has been really hesitant to invite him to church, though he has invited him to activities. This split that we did was on Saturday, and we asked the young man to invite his friend to church for Sunday. Sadly the friend was working with his dad, which is an uncommon occurrence, so we have high hopes for this guy. We have a lesson set up with the recent convert with his friend for this Saturday, and we hope to see him at church Sunday. The area is slowly, but surely, starting to perk up. We have the expectation to be able to baptize these two people in this transfer or the next because they already have the support of members and friends. 

I am glad to be in this area and to be able to see the fruits of my efforts lift it up. I am also glad to have the opportunity to train Elder Heath.  He seems like a great missionary and I have high hopes/expectations for him and myself.

I guess I didn't have the opportunity to tell you yesterday(Labor Day), but we got a call last Saturday saying that Elder Spencer was leaving the area, then on Sunday we got a call saying that I was going to be a trainer, and Elder Spencer was going to be English for a period of time. So my greenie's (trainee) name is Elder Heath and he is from Orem, Utah. I really don't know much else about him because I met him about 5 hours ago and we've been moving in and stuff...

We did end up moving to our new apartment that will be safer for us to travel to and from (ie the configuration of the road is just safer). And the English sisters are actually in the next building over, so they were really nice and baked us cookies. Yesterday, because we couldn't email and we weren't going to shop due to transfers, I decided to make us all french toast for breakfast as a thank you for the cookies and stuff.

1) Elder Spencer didn't exactly believe us when we told him that his bike had been stolen, but then he didn't really freak out because we knew we could fix the problem the next day when we went to Kingwood for the meeting with Elder Cook.

2) The 4 loves were specifically for a missionary, but I guess they can apply to you guys. They were 1) Love your companion (spouse or family member); 2) Love the people (in the ward and your area/community); 3) Love your Mission President (or your church leaders in your case); 4) Love the Lord

3) Yeah, we have worked things out and mainly just laughed about each other's mistakes. Now I'm with my new companion, and I really am just determined to teach him right.  I have enough experience as a missionary that I usually know what to do and how we can do better. I am excited for this experience, especially because I have been feeling like it was just my time for it--I have really needed something to get me out of just going through the motions...

4) I actually have been reading it.  It is something that somebody spoke about recently and I have been reading it to see what it says specifically about my mission and after so I can make goals to become what God sees me as.

I love you guys,
Elder Stanley Scott Dye