My beloved family,
Thought you'd like the title of this email. I heard it from Elder Jones companion of Elder Quican(y)o who is an awesome elder from Peru who came out the same time I did and he's in the other district in my zone. So this week was pretty dang good, and at times pretty dang frustrating. Also apparently the prank video of me is on youtube under the title: punk a mormon. Check it out, I could become famous.
So first off, Kelly. We met with her twice this week, once for dinner and once for a lesson. They love feeding us by the way, and the antelope wasn't half bad. The lesson went well, we're trying to get her to read the Book of Mormon, and she hadn't by our second lesson. So we recommitted her. Our dinner appointment with her and Jake and Garret got me down in the dumps. So it was good, and we talked for a while, and then we got somehow on the topic of tithing and fast offerings. We taught, she committed to do them both (because she's awesome), but I felt like we needed to commit Jake to as well because he's been less active for a long time. Well I asked him if he would, and he said "probably not". Not the answer we would have liked to hear, but we asked him why and he told us he had paid for 10 years while married to his previous wife, and saw no blessings, in fact he saw himself get deeper and deeper in debt. Now his ex-wife wants a lot of child support from him, and he may have just lost his job, and he said he doesn't have enough money to pay. And Kelly got kind of mad at him and said they had enough money, but she would for sure pay tithing. Then I felt like I needed to ask Jake if he was committed to coming back into the church since Kelly was going to be baptized and he was supposed to be part of that. And he said, "We're not talking about this right now". So I felt like a terrible missionary, and I was really down that night. Well, on Sunday both Kelly and Jake had interviews with the Bishop. We asked them how it went right before Sacrament Meeting and they said good, but they had to stop the interview so they could make it to Sacrament and they would resume it after. Well, we talked to Bishop later on in the day, and he told us how it went: he personally challenged Kelly to be baptized in the next 2-3 weeks which she said she would try but she has to get her father in law to come down to confirm her, he told us Jake is working on a few things, but should be ready to baptize Kelly, and he met with Kelly's son Garret and Garret said he wanted to be baptized. So, I love the Bishop. Bishop Ross is an inspired man and an awesome leader. Kelly told him that she would call later on Sunday night to tell him whether the baptism would work or not. AND, She and Garret are getting baptized on the 24th! Holy Smokes Awesome!! We went golfing with them yesterday for pday, and that was really fun, but I'm sunburned dangit. The Binghams are awesome people and I really thank God for letting me be here to watch them progress in the Gospel.
On to Todd Hufford. So it's been interesting with him, and we didn't know really what to do or how to approach it. We had a lesson with him on Wednesday, and Elder Washburn started talking about coming to church, and he asked Todd how he felt about church. Todd said he never got out of church what he felt like he should. He said he never came out feeling closer to God. Well then I just started talking (not randomly) about how I've always felt myself get more out of church when I went asking God a question and expecting an answer. Then something literally clicked with Todd, and his face changed and it was like a lightbulb went off. I then challenged him to go to church asking God something important and expecting to receive an answer at church. Trudy said she had to work on Sunday so she wouldn't be able to come (which is kind of important because she is a member, and the biggest fellowshipper of Todd), but Todd said he would come and bring Tanner, their little kid. And he came! He booked it out of the chapel after Sacrament but he still came and we're going to meet with him this week to see how things went. I think I've never prayed harder in my life for someone to receive an answer than I did during sacrament meeting for Todd. It was kind of a miracle he came.
We also met with Fred Hurlburt and he and his wife commited to read the Book of Mormon together, and we're still unsure what Fred needs to progress. But Bishop talked to us about him and Bishop thinks the key to Fred is through his wife's testimony, which during our first lesson she bore her testimony and brought me and Elder Washburn to tears. It was great, so we're going to have her continue to bear testimony.
So yesterday after Pday, we had dinner with the Blanchards who are awesome, and then we went over to a less active guy's named Brian Thomas to give him a blessing. He's been having stomach issues and has gastritis, but that's not the whole problem so he's getting a colonoscopy today to check to see what's wrong. We had previously given him a blessing, but he wanted one before he went into the doctor's office. So He is married/living with (not sure which) a nonmember named Jess, and they have a daughter. We really want to start teaching Jess because she is a really awesome person, and so Elder Washburn shared the spiritual thought with them on how Heavenly Father loves us, and Jess was really liking it and participating. Then we gave Brian a blessing, Elder Washburn was the voice, and I felt the Spirit very strongly, and after the blessing, both Brian and Jess were crying or tearing up. It was awesome, I know they felt something, and it was just a really cool experience.
So Elder Washburn was made District Leader for this transfer (I just started my second transfer), so that's pretty sweet. He'll do a great job. The work here is just blazing forward, and I thank Heavenly Father for being able to be here and help in the ways that I can to further the work. The church really is true, if you want to know that try it out. By their fruits ye shall know them, and the gospel's fruits are infinite and good. Read D&C 84:61 and 2 Nephi 4:19, 27-35. Awesome scriptures that have helped me out a lot. I love you guys so much.
Elder Logan Bryan