Monday, February 6, 2012

Time is Flying!

One month down 23 to go! but who's counting? It's crazy how time has flown by. It's only been a week and a half but it seems like the MTC was ages ago. Crazy. Well, the update for this week...let's see...where to begin. Might as well begin with the really good stuff. So last Thursday night we went to see the Wagner family. They are non-members who came in touch with the missionaries about a month or so ago and was taught how families could be together forever. They latched on that like a flea to a dog (see how Virginia is changing me? I'm scared). They started coming to church immediately after that but due to their busy schedule usually only half of them come or they only come for one meeting BUT THEY TRY! Since their schedule is finally slowing down, we had the opportunity to go to their house last Thursday evening and teach the first lesson (The Restoration) IT. WAS. AWESOME!!! They HAD to have felt the Spirit. My comp and I sure did! I had the blessed opportunity to issue the baptismal challenge and they immediately said Yes! Usually people will be like, "yeah IF i feel it is true" or something like that. BUT THEY DIDN'T! They were just flat out YES. They seriously felt the Spirit. Bro. Wagner and their two kids were able to attend church (Fast and testimony meeting no less) and to attend all the meetings! It felt good to go up and share my testimony in my new ward. Things are going great! This family is GOLDEN and I'm definitely praying for them.

Oh, so funny story. Last night my companion and I were driving in an area known as Ettrick (it's the ghetto of Colonial Heights), we're kinda lost to since he didn't want to use the GPS, and we turn onto this dark, windy, long, lonely, scary, road with no houses but just trees on either side (remember this is at night) so we were convinced we were going to die. As we turn a corner our lights shine on this puddle and with the light hitting it just so and due to the pine needles, the puddle looked BLOOD RED. no joke. We both see it and yell "WHOA!" We seriously thought it was blood. After passing it we finally decide to turn around and since he had to back up...yours truely had to get out and back him up (mission rules) so i was pretty sure I was going to get jumped and what not. We escaped but it was pretty sketchy. Ok, so yall might not find it funny but it was pretty funny to us (afterward).
That same night we decide to go tracting (HORRIBLE idea to do on Super Bowl Sundy) but we saw this house that was completely dark, looked abandoned and what not since there wasn't a car or anything but we were like whatever we'll just try it. We walk up, and I swear it looked haunted, but there was a sign next to the door that said, "Doorbell not working. Push the BIG RED BUTTON (emphasis added)". Below that was this big red button that we were sure was going to spring some kind of trap. Elder Bradfield hestitantly pushes the button AND........................................................................ a doorbell rang and this little old woman who wasn't interested answered the door and we left. end of story let's move on. Yeah, pretty adventurous story huh?

I am continuing to meet the people of the ward and as i've said before, we're fed almost every night. This is a great area and I hope we can work wonders. Scratch that. I hope the Lord can work wonders through us. that's better. OH! So since yesterday we weren't meeting up with much success, at one point I just looked at the sky and semi-jokingly (sorta) said, "Can I PLEASE get a miracle tonight?!" My companion laughed and we moved on. BUT! The Lord seemed to have answered that prayer. Ok, so we were leaving a members house and as we were leaving a car pulled up into the parking lot. As we passed the car a guy jumps out and yells, "Hey! are you Mormons?". My comp and I stop and were like, "...yeah...." and he called us over to talk with him. He started asking us question about what we believe, how are we different from the rest of Christianity, what we thought of Jesus Christ and so on. He was like, "Here let me give you my number and address! I want you guys to come over and tell me more." He had accepted Christ as his Savior and was very open to many philosophies. Yet despite the cigarette and beer in his hand and his excessive cussing, he was a very nice and pleasant guy to talk to. I felt really good as we were walking away. Unfortunatly he lives outside of our area so we'll have to refer him to other elders BUT he was legitimately interested and it was really really cool. I'm confident that was the miracle I was looking for. (No. this isn't Greenie enthusiasm or anything this actually seems to be really good).

So, I gotta go soon so I'll leave with this:
Trials and hardships are BLESSINGS. Consider the story of Alma the elder in Mosiah 23 and 24 (READ THESE CHAPTERS) The Lord blesses his people CONSTANTLY because he loves us and wants us to be happy. He also chastens and tries his people for their benefit as well. Trials do not always come because of wickedness. Alma and his people were an extremely righteous people and did everything they could to serve God and each other. Then the Lamanites and the wicked priests of King Noah come into the scene and enslave them and begin to persecute them. I love how they react  though. They submit WILLINGLY and humble themselves before their captors and trust completely in God. As a result of their continuous prayers and faithfullness (DESPITE hardship) he lightened their load and eventually brought them out of bondage. READ THOSE CHAPTERS. I know this work to be true and despite every hardship is WORTH IT. When people get angry and begin to reject the Lord "because it is too hard" they have forgotten all the good he has provided. I know this work is true and say this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Elder Hyrum Smith

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