Sunday, January 19, 2014

Happy New Year!

January 6th
Good to be back!  I hope everyone had a fantastic new year! Mine was pretty great; I got to go to bed two hours early, which was awesome!  I definitely needed it, I’ll tell you that much!  It was the first time in a while that I haven't stayed up for the New Year, though.  I definitely felt a little lame for going to bed at 8:30, but that's alright.  I hope you all had a good ole’ time and stayed outta trouble and got to enjoy some Martinellis and all got yourself a nice new years kiss!

This week we met with a lot of RCLA's (recent converts and less active members) because nearly all of our investigators got sick and/or were out of town!  It was kind of a bummer actually, but that's okay.  It was nice visiting with the less active members!  We shared a lot of little spiritual messages and had inspirational visits.  The thing that is really awesome about visiting less active members and recent is that they're always surprised when we stop by…..  AND, by "surprised," I don't exactly mean the good connotation!  Often, they're unpleasantly surprised because the missionaries are just dropping by outta nowhere.  But they, being nice, will let us come in and get out of the cold and we'll just have a nice conversation with them and chat with them.  What I’ve definitely learned from elder wright is that all you have do is ask the right don't actually have to say anything about yourself.  You don't need to talk about yourself. And, when it comes down to it, you aren't the one that matters.  They are.  So, if you just sit there and ask them questions, eventually you'll hit the right question and you'll get 'em going for an hour.  They'll just talk and talk, and that really opens them up to seeing the missionaries because we're great listeners!  Then, at the end, we ask if we can play a little game with them.  We'll do a little spiritual thought/inspirational visit game that is gospel related.  I do the card magic trick or something, and they'll wonder how I did it.  Elder wright will tie it into the gospel, and we have a great time. It’s really is cool.

I've started to realize the importance of home teaching and visiting teaching after I’ve been visiting all of these RCLA's this week.  Can you imagine what it means to someone, active or less active, to know that they have a couple people who love them, respect them, care about them, and will look after them in times of need?  It's awesome!  S, I guess that's my little bit for this week.  That’s what I learned. It’s very important for fellowship, and I’m glad that my home ward set such a good example to me back home.

A couple cool things happened this week:
#1 I had the opportunity to go on an exchange with the OTHER elder wright (not my companion) because elder Swonson was sick.  It was really cool.  My companion has taught me a lot about asking questions and how to get people to talk, so I was really working on not talking about myself (I’ve realized I probably talk about myself way too much, so I’m trying to stop that) and really being interested in the OTHER people and what they have to say.  What better opportunity to do that than on exchanges, where I don't know any of the investigators?!  I’m not going to lie, I was not excited to go on exchanges.  I wanted to stay in.  It was cold outside.  But, my companion made me do it.  I was a little intimidated because me and the OTHER elder wright, didn't get along super well.  I will tell you what - oing on an exchange with him really made me realize that all the faults that I was finding in him were my OWN fault.  He's a great guy and a great missionary.  We had a great exchange and killed it in a couple lessons, absolutely killed it.  We worked very well together, and it was a very cool experience.

So some sad news everyone - my excitement about the investigators we found in McDonalds last week was short lived.  I got very fired up and excited when I found out how excited they were about the gospel. Although I knew it was too good to be true, I really wanted to believe that they WERE that excited about what I had to say.  They texted us this week and told us they were going to continue going to the other church.

I was pretty heartbroken. I felt like I had just had a girl break up with me or something; my heart sank. But, you know what…that's alright. They're agents, and they have their agency to make their own decisions.  I can't change that.  I did my best, and I would have rather "loved and lost than never loved at all." right?

I’ve noticed a lot of missionaries lose that fire and excitement when they find new investigators.  They play it off like it isn't that big of a deal.  Maybe it's just because I’m new and naive, but I want to stay the same way.  I’d rather have my heart broken than to not get attached at all.  How can someone be converted if they don't see YOUR love for the gospel and your love for THEM?  I mean, I understand the other point of view, and I understand why a lot of missionaries get that way, feeling indifferent about being dropped by investigators, but I suppose my goal for this year is to not become that way. I want to keep that fire and keep that excitement and, if need be, have my heart broken another hundred times.  I’d rather be like that than be a robot. 

It’s been pretty cold the last few days.  It’s 26 degrees and windy right now! I'm just glad I’m not on the bike anymore for THIS week.  We had to bike through some ridiculously windy weather on Friday and Saturday, it was exhausting!  I would come home and just pass out in my church clothes - I was SO tired. Fat boy doesn't like to bike up the hills in the wind hahah.  My legs are getting pretty toned though, I'll tell ya that much! 

We got transfer calls yesterday. Both my companion and I are staying in the area, but just about everyone else in my district is getting transferred.   Elder R. Wright is getting transferred, elder Swonson is staying, the Seguin elders are getting doubled out and elder peck is leaving Yorktown. Crazy huh? I’m going to have a whole new district! At least my companion and Swonson are staying though – I like those guys J.

I have a video and pictures from Christmas! I’ve actually improved on the ukulele quite a bit since I made the video, but its just a quick short clip of me playing the uke.

Have a great week! Love you all!

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