January 13th, 2014
This was a solid week. I'm a little short on time today, but I will do my best to get all the information out. We are so excited to be staying here!
Thursday was transfers so we continued the tradition of taking Round Rock out to lunch. We studied with them and then took them to Subway since we had gift cards and coupons. Old Settlers wanted us to take them to transfer meeting but neither of us needed to go so we tried convincing them to not go, but they really wanted to so we had to take them. It was fun to see all of my former companions and see the new companionships. There was a bit of a buzz when they announced me and Elder W were staying so that was cool. Elder T is staying at UT campus, Elder V is heading to San Antonio, and Elder S is staying in S and training a new missionary. We went to E's after the meeting and we went right in and had a really good lesson with them. He said that he read from the Book of Mormon and really liked it and confirmed that he wants to get baptized but doesn't feel ready. We explained that he can be ready if he follows through on the commitments we leave him. He said that he was going to come to church too. We headed off to J's house and we ended up having a great lesson with him too. His wife still brings us apple juice and cookies everytime we come by and they are really nice. He is so awesome! It's funny to watch him struggle with himself because he knows the church is true but he doesn't seem to know what to do about it or to admit it, but I'm confident one of these days he will finally realize he needs to do something about it. We had dinner at the K's house and they brought a friend that Bro K has been talking about the gospel with, so that was cool. The guy's name was C but he has some issues with religion. We shared a lesson about the Book of Mormon but then he wanted to know about Joseph Smith so we ended up back-tracking and teaching the restoration. He wasn't super receptive but the Ks were great and I saw how much better it is to have a member fellowship like that. If he was ready I have no doubt he would be a solid investigator.
Friday was awesome. We got to go to San Antonio because Elder Bednar was in town for a stake conference. We knew about this weeks ago but we weren't suppose to make it public for security reasons. We had some talks we were suppose to read about learning by faith, and conversion. Basically the main thing to get out of it was that we need to act in order to strengthen our faith. They were really good talks and I highly recommend them. They are called “Learning by Faith,” “Ask in Faith,” and “Testimony and Conversion” or something like that. All by Elder Bednar. It was really cool to be in his presence. He was really funny and really showed his personality. Instead of just talking he had everyone particpating so that we could learn by faith as we talked about learning by faith. It was interesting. He said a few things that were really cool. First he said that members write too many “large plates” by simply writing things that were said. He said to write “small plates” and the things that the Holy Ghost teaches us while we listen with our hearts. I learned so much more but you will have to ask for more details some other time. It was incredible. He is amazing!
Saturday we weekly planned. We also had a quick lesson with S about the Book of Mormon and asked him to read a scripture from the Book of Mormon. He is a really good kid. We also stopped by E and he had us come in and we had an incredible lesson with them. We talked about baptism a lot and L even said that she wants to be baptized too. It was a really inspiring lesson and they are just the best people ever. I have such a deep love for them! They weren't able to make it to church so that was too bad, but they will come next week. They also gave us some really good chicken and egg salad.
Sunday was sweet. No one was able to make it to church but the talks in church were awesome. All about fellowshipping and making people comfortable. The ward council is really pleased with the efforts we have made and we seem to have their trust. We have been really successful with reactivation even though that's not our calling but it's been cool to see. I really love this ward. We had a really good lesson with the L family and they love us. They are such a good family and we are so happy to be a part of their reactivation. Sunday after dinner, we came out of the family's house and there was a huge dog eating out of a garbage bag on the side of the road. I looked at it and I thought it was a fox because I thought it had a white underside, so I told Elder W that it was a fox and then he took off running. Unfortunately this made the dog jump up and chase after us, so I had to start hauling booty to get to the car. Luckily the car was unlocked and I got there just in time. Then we realized it was just a huge dog, but it was so freaky. We had so much adrenaline. We drove past it again and we realized that it did have rabbies so that was still pretty freaky.
On a more serious note, I have come to know how important the gift of the Holy Ghost is and how real it is. I know that that is why baptism is so essential so that we can go to the Celestial kingdom and have the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost to help us on the path. I know the Book of Mormon is true and that it was written for us in this day and has a pure translation and that is why there is such power behind it. I love you all and thanks for all you do!
January 20th 2014
This was a pretty good week, although it was a bit slower than normal.
Anyways, I know that this is Christ's church and that this is His work. I know that the Book of Mormon is true and that people are capable of changing. I also know that baptism is the GATE to eternal life. It is not the end. There is a reason Preach My Gospel and our recent-convert sheets talk about setting up addiction recovery classes when needed. The qualifications for baptism does not require perfection. Only desire, sincere repentance, and a willingness to serve and follow God until the end. I know that none of us would ever be perfect if it wasn't for Jesus Christ and that as we "hunger and thirst after righteousness" we can be made perfect through the atonement of Jesus Christ. Thanks for all the love and support!