Monday, October 20, 2014

Busy in Texas

This week started off with a great P-day full of lots of basketball playing. Basketball is always a good way to relax a little bit and relive some stress:) We have a lot of awesome elders in our district, and always have good times together. 

This Tuesday night we went and saw Jerome with a member named brother Merrill. The visit went ok, until brother Merrill started teaching Jerome about the beliefs of Christ's church. He started off by mentioning our Heavenly Mother, which caught Jerome off guard. Then he explained the first three lessons from PMG in an hour! It was kind of like giving a new born a steak before he has the teeth to chew it:) The whole time brother Merrill was talking he didn't give us a chance to check for understanding. When brother Merrill was done, poor Jerome said his head was spinning and that he would have to sit down and think about all that was said. luckily at the end I was able to tell him that the most important thing he should do and focus on is to read the Book of Mormon and pray to know it's true. We left feeling kind frustrated and worried that Jerome would not want to see us again. We were able to see him yesterday and he let us in and let us sit down and talk to him. It was quite the relief:) I have a good feeling that Jerome sooner or later will realize that this is the true church and that baptism by proper authority is critical to  make it back to God. I love how he is always open to new ideas and beliefs. 

We still have not been able to get in touch with Rachel and Erica. We called Rachael quite a few time times this week, but she didn't ever have a time that was good to come by and see her. Hopefully this week she will be able to call us and tell us her schedule. Erica is still dealing with her daughter who is really struggling. She is very stressed and worried and prayers for her are much needed. Hopefully we will be able to get in contact with her as well. 

This week we had the amazing privilege of having a member of the 70 come and visit our mission! his name was Elder Cardon. We had a big conference Friday. It was really good. Talked a lot about the gathering of Israel in the last days and bore a wonderful testimony of God and our Savior. He also taught us that we need to be having the father of the home give a kneeling prayer during the first lesson of teaching a family. He did a role play during the conference and showed us how we to go about doing it. It was a very bold approach, but very powerful and effective. His wife also gave a talk on loving your companions. It was a great reminder and I could feel her love for all of us as she talked. Also prier to Elder Cardon's visit, he had asked each of us to read chapter 4 of PMG and prepare a 3 minute talk. Then during the conference he had people share there experiences of preparing the talk. It was cool to see so many sisters and elders have spiritual experiences while preparing their talks. Elder Cardon was inspired to have us prepare those talks. It was such a cool opportunity to have a general authority in our mission.

After the conference we exchanged with the Hurst elders. I had the opportunity to go with Elder Stewart. The first thing we did was go to dinner at a burger place, it was really yummy and filling. That night we went and visited this less-active family named the Tongas. They were really nice and just had a baby 3 days ago! He was so cute. We taught a brief lesson on the plan of salvation. Brother Tonga then gave a wonderful testimony about Jesus and his atonement. Following that we were trying to find this apartments, but ended up in these other apartments that we didn't know existed. While we were lost and trying to figure out where we were, we asked a guy who was walking his dog for directions. We started talking to this man and found out his dad was from Utah and knew about Mormons. We then gave him a card with the Savior appearing to the Americas and asked if we could come and see him again. He said we could. He was a really nice man, and I am grateful God put him in our path. The following morning we had the chance to go and visit a referral we had received for an older lady named Nancy. She was really nice and shared this cool story of when her husband had come and visited her from the spirit world when she was in a car wreck. We left her with a Book of Mormon. Following that we got the chance to go to the baptism of this really nice 9 year old boy named Logan. It was a wonderful service and Logan was super excited! One funny thing that happened was elder Nanny (the one who baptized Logan) forgot to bring a towel and had to use paper towels to dry off:) Also while we were walking to the church to exchange back, we meet this really interesting man named Rusty. He had ever chapter 3 verse 16 in the bible memorized! He also had the whole 119th chapter of Psalms memorized which contains 176 versus. It took like 15 minutes to tell us, it was pretty amazing. He believed that the bible was the only word of God and that the Book of Mormon was made up. Also said that some day we would burn in Hell with Joseph Smith and we would look up at him in Heaven and say "why didn't we listen to Rusty!" We tried to explain where the Book of Mormon came from, but he wouldn't listen. Hopefully some day he will come to the fullness of the truth!;) 

Two more awesome things that happened this week. The first one was that Sunni Webster got her temple recommend! We have been trying to get her one for a while now, and finally she went and got one. The second cool that happened was, we were at the church picking up some food and we ran into brother Binkley. Brother Binkley has had a pretty rough life. He used to be in a gang and is covered in all kind of tattoos. He has a pretty cool conversion story, but any way we ran into him and started telling us his testimony. It was so powerful! He told us that even if he fell off the straight and narrow path, that he would never in his life deny that the Book of Mormon was true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet. It was so cool to see how the gospel has changed his life. It showed me the power of the Atonement!

Hope every one has a good week in school and work! Make sure that you are always looking for ways to share the gospel and to lift up those who need your help!


Elder Griffin

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