Oh my gosh this week fllleeewww by so fast! Every day just keeps zipping by! We've been super busy this week, and last week I think I mentioned the difference between just being busy and being effective and productive. Well, we're super good at the former, and the latter is picking up momentum as well.
So first of all, we did exchanges with two companionships this week. On Tuesday morning after studies we drove out to Hurricane and ate lunch with E Hendershott and Blauer. Then I took E Blauer back to Little Valley for the day! He's a pretty awesome missionary. We only had two appointments that day, but they both went pretty well. The rest of the time we were contacting potential families and key contacts for those potentials. Elder Blauer is really good at opening his mouth...he's not afraid to share his thoughts and his purpose with everyone! He reminds me a lot of Elder Linville (shout out) so it was awesome to serve with him for the day. He has a natural talent too...he can sight read music and play it on the piano. Jealous!
Then the next day we exchanged back (exchanges are for 24 hours) and I told Elder Lewis everything that happened and showed him our plans for the day, then we exchanged with the other DL companionship in Hurricane, E Holmstead and Anduro, about an hour later. E Lewis took E Anduro to Little Valley, and I stayed in Hurricane with Elder Holmstead! My very first companion! We kept telling everyone how awesome it was to be each others' very first comp the minute we arrived at the MTC. Good times. Needless to say, we had a great day in Hurricane. In fact, we found a potential investigator at home and stopped by. Well he let us in and we taught him the message of the Restoration and put him on date for baptism next month! It was awesome haha and it was just cool to see how natural it was for us two to teach together. We've both come a long way since those first few very timid lessons in the MTC!
Then of course there's our own area. Elder Lewis and I got a little behind on our goals this week because of exchanges and some other things. So on Saturday we decided to put three of our investigators on date for baptism, no questions asked. Gosh I wish I would have done that for the past 20 months of my mission. We just geared the lesson plans based on the baptismal invitation and wherever the respective investigator was at in the lessons.
We're teaching a 16 year old named Slim. cool name huh? He's awesome. He doesn't even live in our area haha but we were asked by the sister missionaries who cover him to go ahead and teach him. Okay! So on Sat was our third lesson with him and we watched the Joseph Smith dvd with him. He's pretty reserved and doesn't say too much, but he's opening up a lot more now. He's a stud! haha he's super athletic and kinda reminds me of Eric/Brennin Angel. He wants to be baptized! I invited him to be baptized on March 15!! We saw him yesterday at Zion's and he said he'll have to move it back a week for his family to all be there. But he's committed!
Later on we started up the Plan of Salvation with a 15 year old girl named Lindsey. She's like the same as Slim...very quiet but proactive. She's probably the quietest cheerleader I've ever met. But same thing...she's opening up a lot more and she committed to be baptized on the 8th of March!! Her mom is atheist and her dad is super inactive, but Lindsey's fellowshipper Jerri Jorgensen (who is awesome by the way!) asked Lindsey's mom a while back if she wanted her to be baptized. You know what Lindsey's mom said? "I've always pictured Lindsey marrying a mormon boy!" boom, we're in...and we're capitalizing let me tell you!
And we didn't stop there. On Saturday night we met with Shane. Have I told you guys about him? 26 years old and he's been taught everything and wants to be baptized for the right reasons. He's just trying to quite smoking. We've been helping him and encouraging him and setting plans with him. He's gone from 12-14 cigarettes a day to.....drum rolll......none!!! Well kind of! haha yesterday he switched from 2 puffs of a normal cigarette to about 5 with an electronic one. Hmm, well, we'll take that as improvement. We committed him to March 1st. He has to quit smoking for at least a week solid to be baptized. He's so close!
On Sunday night a couple wards put on a youth fireside at one of our chapels. The entire middle rows were packed with kids and there leaders/parents. The bishop asked Pres/Sis Center to speak to them, and the night before President called us up about it and asked us to speak 10 mins on bofm and the other 10 mins on pmg. We literally flipped a coin haha. I took PMG. The fireside itself went really well! All four of us spoke respectively and trained all these future missionaries on what to expect and how to prepare successfully. Some of the kids were taking some serious notes! It was awesome. It was just one of those moments where you can say as a missionary without hypocrisy that you're doing what you need to be doing and you're truly being a light on a hill that cannot be hid. It was humbling and reassuring for sure. Plus one kid came up to us right before the meeting started just to tell us how good our brownies were haha. We made some earlier this week and gave them to some bishops. He must have been right on cue, because Pres/Sis Center were right next to us and they're the ones that told us to do that in the first place haha. Brownie points!
So we came across a part member family and the dad is from Safford, AZ! Woah! Brother porter is his name, and there's a few porters in st. george that I've met that are from safford. Anyway, his dad is Dorren van porter if that rings a bell (probably to dad or grandma). His uncle is Rick Haller and his first cousin is Eric Haller, who was like the best 8th grade Social Studies teacher and track coach ever! haha weird connections.... Also we ate dinner with an older couple this week. The wife is from La Paz Bolivia, so we got to talk about the country and culture a little bit. I always get super excited when I meet someone who has been to Peru or Bolivia, especially if they're natives from there! "Ohh! my brother served there!" haha
So yeah yesterday we went to Zion's National Park. President's day is a free day there! We got permission from President to go early and do a couple hikes there. Suuuper awesome! One of the coolest guys in our area Bro Stout took us. Just the three of us! It was incredible. That man is full of wisdom, but he's super crazy haha. I learned a lot with him yesterday, and I wrote it all down in my journal. Anyway, there was a ton of people there for the holiday. On our way down from one of the hikes, we passed a big group of missionaries going up haha. It was the place to be! I think we heard "Elders?! great p-day activity isn't it!" like at least 500 times haha. The recognition of us missionaries in Utah is ridiculous haha. We had a great day.
So Julie is going through the temple for her endowments? Well if I had more time I would throw in some great advice. But in short, just enjoy the ride. Your first experience can either be a fire hose to your face, or it can be a nice little sip at the drinking fountain. My first experience I tried to take a sip of the fire hose and well that doesn't work too well. haha so fast and pray before hand, read through the temple prep pamphlet and ponder over your patriarchal blessing, then just take it easy the first time. Keith always taught me to take short choppy steps when trying to push a big vehicle, so go often and get a little bit here and there.
Oh and I got a little valentines package from the Goodmans! Can you let them know for me? Tell them thanks!
Time to go work!