Hey there! I'm back in the field!
Well, this week has been interesting. I left the MTC on Monday morning, and then spend the night as Sister Orr's companion (she came out with me). Then in the morning, we drove to the Transfer site, and I got my stuff off the trailer, said goodbye to the sisters in my MTC district, then got on the transfer van to the Gila Valley. Long ride there. But I got to see some familiar faces! The departing missionaries, then Elder Dilworth, Deyarmond, Wyman, Garcia, and half of my district in SV! Pretty cool.
So my area covers Pima and Central. We live in Pima.
I am kind of distracted today, so I apologize if this email is kind of lame. It is kind of weird to be back in the mission. It feels different. I am in a completely new area, new part of the mission, new companion, new district, zone, everything is new. I don't usually do well just being thrown into something completely new unless I catch onto the spirit of things quickly. But I do have a renewed desire to get out there and serve to the fullest. I have a greater determination to be obedient, diligent, and happy. I will be optimistic, I will work hard. I understand my purpose as a missionary SO much better, and with that understanding comes an increase in faith and the extra boost that I need to be successful and to find those whom the Lord has prepared.
Anyway, so some experiences:
The first day, we met with a lady named Doreen. She is a new investigator, a little older, but she loves her Bible. The lesson started off kind of rough, as she had read the Plan of Salvation Pamphlet, and found some things that she did not agree with. So we went through those, and she complained that we like to reference the Book of Mormon more than the Bible. And that the pamphlet had 5 references to the Book of Mormon and only 4 to the Bible. Seriously. But As we started, I silently prayed for charity for this woman, that I would develop love for her in a way that I would be able to express the thoughts and message that God wanted me to tell her at the time. And I was. The Spirit was definitely present, and I could feel its power on all of our hearts. We were not very prepared for the lesson, as it was transfer day and I had just gotten to the area, but the Lord was merciful to me, and my companion. We seem to teach and work well together, things flow pretty well. But as the lesson went on, we were able to go through the whole Plan of Happiness, explain things clearly, and relate to what she already believes. Turns out she actually believes most of the things we believe, and she even used some phrases like "age of accountability" and agrees with some things that are not standard Christian doctrine. Are you sure you're not a member, lady? Anyway, as we continued to teach by the Spirit, you could physically see her countenance change. Her heart was softened before our very eyes. She was more receptive. And when we asked her what she thought, or if things made sense, she was like "yeah, I believe that. That makes sense." We invited her to pray to know if the things we taught were true, and how the only way we can find truth is by asking the person who knows all truth. The source of all truth, which is God Himself. And she said "Oh, I already know it's true. I already pray. But I will pray and ask Him if everything else is true." We gave her a few things to read, and she said she would read them, and to give her two weeks to study and pray about it. I am always hesitant to allow that much time between visits, but we are praying that the Spirit will continue to work on her.
Later, we had an appointment with a part-member family, and the wife has a baptismal date. But when we were leaving, their son Joseph, who is autistic, went to give each of us a hug. Remember on the movie Snow White, when she kisses each of the dwarves on their heads, and dopey runs to the back of the line to get another kiss on the head? Picture that, and it's essentially how Joseph was. He is dopey. Super innocent, sweet kid. But he gave us each a hug, and first puckered his lips to kiss Sister Charles, but then she's like nooo I'm a missionary! I'm sorry! But then he cam over and gave me a hug, and since he couldn't kiss my face, he found a spot on my arm and kissed my arm haha. That was the first time he had ever met me. And if you understand most autistic kids, they have to get a good vibe from you if you want them to get anywhere close to you. But he must have gotten a good vibe from me or felt the Spirit or something, because he easily warmed up to me on the first visit! Cool!
So my companion is Sister Charles. She and I are crazy similar in a lot of ways. Same likes, dislikes, hobbies and interests, struggles in life, similar way of thinking, thought processes, random, musically inclined, pet peeves, even similar stories of how we got to the point of going on a mission. She is from Kentucky, and is 23. She did 3 years at BYUI, and these are her last two transfers (I will probably be her last companion). She's the oldest of 5 kids. But yeah, that's her! :)
I feel like the Spirit has taught me a lot in the past few days. I feel like I am coming to understand myself more, and realize what the truly important things are in life. And that has helped me to prioritize, which is something I have always struggled with. But I know the Lord watches over me, and knows about every concern, prayer, and effort I make.
I don't have much else to say, but I love every one of you! I keep you in my thoughts and prayers. Have a great week!
P.S. I live next door to a cemetery..... And it is just one family's personal graveyard of about 10 graves. At least they are together now! I try not to think about it too much. They're really friendly. The Rogers' are great :)
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|Tucson Temple with Dome|