Oh how I miss you. This week was much better than last week, tons better. It was really a tender mercy from the Lord. This week we had 5 lessons with potential investigators/investigators. Elder Washburn said that is the best week this area has had for 6 months! Then yesterday, before church, Bishop told us his friend (a kid he coaches on his daughter's shooting team [she is like in the top 15 in the nation for shooting .22]) has been talking to him, and Bishop said he was a little afraid to ask him to take the missionary discussions because he said he knew what the answer would be. But Bishop asked him, and he said he was ready to have us teach him, so we'll be doing that at bishop's house this next week or two. Also at church, two part member families came that haven't before. One, named the hurlburts we're having dinner with at the Wilzbach's on Wednesday. The mom is a member, but the father isn't. But he talked with the Bishop and his wife on Sunday, and apparently he said he's ready for us to teach him. Also, another family that nobody has ever met before came to church with 4 kids. Also a part member family. I don't remember which spouse isn't a member, but they talked to a member of the bishopric, and they want to be taught as well. So we have had some crazy success this past week, and I think the Lord is blessing the ward for the active role they have been finally taking in missionary work--they just completed a 40 day fast on Thursday.
So we taught two PI's on Monday, the first named Amber. She is a lady with four kids, no husband, and lives in a trailer on a dirt road (there's a ton of that here in cheyenne).We taught the first lesson with her, and she agreed to read the Book of Mormon and come to church. It was a good lesson. We went back on Saturday to give her a Spanish BOM, and asked if she had read any of the English one, and she said no and apologized for not coming to church. Except for the weird and obvious fact that church was tomorrow, and she wouldn't have had a chance to go yet. So we told her that church was tomorrow and we'd love to see her there. But, needless to say a weird conversation. We have an appt with her tomorrow, so we'll see how that goes.
Next PI we taught that day was Chris. Oh chris. We were at his trailer for an hour and a half! He kept talking in circles about how he was open minded, but didn't believe in God because God isn't perfect, but he hoped he was wrong for everyone else's sake. It was the most frustrating, ridiculous, confusing conversation that I ever have had. Also, obviously, the Spirit was not there, so that didn't help. I don't think we'll be going back there, although he did invite us to go frisby golfing with him some other time, which we politely thanked him for the offer (and not so cordially turned it down in our minds). He's a good guy, just really misguided.
Tuesday was a trainer/greenie meeting with the APs and President in Loveland, CO. It was great. Everyone got to take a minute or two to talk about their first week and experiences, and I talked about how I know Satan works on missionaries hard, and it's not easy being away from family, but it will be worth it. I kind of cried a little.
Wednesday we taught a PI named Aaron who teaches World History at the high school, but emphasizes world religion. His purpose in meeting with us was to better understand and represent our religion when teaching his students. It was a good intellectual discussion, but at the end, E Washburn told him that although we loved talking about it with him, we know that it has power to influence his personal life as well, and we challenged him to read the BOM and pray about it to know if it was true personally. He said he would and was open minded, but we didn't get a return appt so we'll see how it goes.
Thursday we went to the temple, and went to the Scheuler's for dinner. They have a daughter that lives in Henderson. She went inactive about 4 years ago. Her husband is an RM, and he knows better, but she kind of wears the pants in the family, so what she says goes. They have a son who needs to be raised in the gospel. I'm almost sure they live in Uncle Mario's and Aunt Sunny's ward. This needs to be sent to Aunt Sunny and Uncle Mario. I don't know how they want to go about it, but they need to be fellowshipped and brought back. The mom won't listen to her family, but they think she might listen to a friend or the missionaries. The dad will pretty much for sure let the missionaries in, so I'm giving the info to you, and do with it what the Spirit guides you to do. I know you guys will do awesome.
We taught another investigator on Friday named Spencer. He has been taught one lesson already, and we were planning on teaching lesson 2, but he had tons of questions about the BOM and about the Restoration. He told us he is investigating all churches, not just ours because he doesn't know which God to believe in or whether it matters where he finds happiness as long as he finds it. He even asked us, "Why should I worship your God instead of other gods like Zeus or Jupiter?" Weirdest question of my life, but truth is, he should worship the one and Almighty God because He is perfect and His purpose is to bring our immortality and eternal life-to make us happy. Why would someone worship a god that messes with people's lives, has affairs all over the place, and doesn't really show love? like Zeus. Well the answer to that is in the scripture that Dad sent the missionaries from our ward. They don't have the truth because they know not where to find it. Anyway, we have another lesson with spencer on friday, and we've been preparing for it and seeking guidance from the Spirit.
My bike's back tire blew out on Saturday, so we had to go to walmart to buy a new tube. Also in my personal study I've been reading Our Search for Happiness by Elder Ballard. It is an awesome book, and I encourage all who get this email to read it. It's a super easy read and outlines our beliefs in a powerful but meaningful way. I've been studying it and so has E Washburn for Spencer and insights in how to teach him.
So this week has been awesome and sooo much better than last week. However, Satan still works on me, and on the people in this area. He has had intense influence in many people's lives to harden their hearts or lead them away from the truth. The mornings are still difficult to me, and today especially was hard missing you guys. I can't even describe how difficult the concept is that I won't see you for what seems like forever. BUT, "The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures. He leadeth me beside the still water. He restoreth my soul...my cup runneth o'er." I truly feel the Lord blessing my life and the lives of the members and people in my area. There is no describing what it feels like to just be blessed with opportunities and success after trials. I know it won't always be this easy, but there is ALWAYS hope for the future. I love you guys.
Elder Logan Bryan