Sunday, December 6, 2015

Almost 3 Months Down???

November 16, 2015

Yes you read that right! Almost 3 months! I remember walking into our
sad excuse for an apartment the first day and thinking "I have to live
here for 3 months? There's no way!" Well I guess I did it somehow and
I'm almost done with my 12 week training too!

Last Monday we helped Tom out a little bit, then he took us over to
Geno's house (the JW) so we could replace his leaky faucet! Who
thought I would be a plumber for a JW while I'm on my mission? Anyways
it's always good to help, no matter who it is! The guys very very nice
and me and Elder Stimpson are gonna try to convert him next time we
see him hahaha. Then we went and picked up Tom's snowplow for his
truck and he said if we are still around when it snows bad, we can
come snowplow with him! We went to stop by Jeff's like we usually do
on P-day, but they were eating dinner, so we went to Walmart to finish
our P-day and wow shopping is even more boring on your mission!
Afterwards we finished the day having FHE with the Bakers as usual!

Tuesday we got a call from Jeff asking if we had eaten lunch yet, and
we hadn't so he invited us over for lunch and he makes probably the
best tuna salad I've eaten! We had a lesson with Casper later that
day, which went super good! We taught him the word of wisdom, and his
older brother, Junior, who's like 10 was in the lesson with us. Junior
pretty much knew the word of wisdom spot on, which surprised us
because he hasn't been to church since I've been here! We are gonna
focus on getting him back to church as well as getting Casper
baptized! Bro Shoenberger came to the lesson with us, and he asked
Casper's mom, Jennifer if they had family prayer every night. Junior
flat out told us no, so Bro Shoenberger committed them to saying their
family prayers every night! Pretty much a short lesson with just
Casper turned into a lesson with the entire family!

Wednesday we went and painted Tom's new trailer and went with him up
to Jim Thorpe so he could get his snowblower out from his
mother-in-law's house. On our way back he drove into Lehighton and I
had no idea where he was going, until he pulled into the parking lot
to the chinese buffet we keep eating at! He bought us lunch, which was
the 3rd time in a week I ate there, which is also 3 too many times
I've eaten there! Anyways we went back to his house to replace the
baseboard heater in his bathroom, but for some reason we couldn't get
it to work. Later in the day we decided we'd make up a bunch of thank
you notes to deliver to the veteran's in our branch. Hopefully they
enjoyed it, most of them weren't home so we left it on their porch. I
wrote one for Jeff and threw a little bit of my comedic genius into it
and he thought it was hilarious and loved it!

Thursday we had our district meeting. Elder Stimpson gave it on
listening. Listening is super important as a missionary because as you
go in to visit investigators or members, it's not about you, it's
about them and you need to listen. Elder Stimpson said he needs to
work on it a lot because every time he's talking to someone and they
say something, he will almost always have a story to go along with it.
Which is true, I've heard about every story he has more than once
haha, but he committed us to all be better listeners and go through an
evaluation in PMG. Our Branch Mission Leader prides himself on being
such a good listener. He really is, but he talks about it a lot, go
figure? A lot of the lonely/crazy people in the ward call him or he
goes and visits them and just listens. He says "the key to listening
is to say "Exactly" when there's a pause, it shows them you agree and
that you know what they are talking about". So I figured for the rest
of the week I'd focus a lot on listening and take what I learned from
our BML and district meeting. After the meeting, we did exchanges so I
got to go to Stroudsburg with Elder Martinez. It was nice to get a
break from my area! Elder Martinez wanted me to teach my object lesson
I often use throughout the day so he could learn it and teach it
himself. We started off by going to another chinese buffet out in
Stroudsburg. I don't know how much more my body can handle of that
stuff! We visited a less active member, who's kids are pretty much out
of control, so I taught him the lesson about the holy ghost and things
you need to do to keep the holy ghost in your life. We committed him
to go to church this week and I forgot to ask Elder Martinez if he
actually went. We went and visited this inactive lady Elder Martinez
has never met. I guess a member asked if we could go give her a
blessing, because she's pretty sick. We gave the lady, Becky, a
blessing and it turns out she has cancer. A member came with us, Bro
Dehaven, and he lost his wife to cancer a year or two ago so this hit
him pretty hard. Becky was baptized a few years ago and brought
another lady into the church and maybe even more. It's pretty sad, but
the Lord always has a plan for us. We went downstairs in the building
to have dinner with a member, who was the lady Becky brought into the
church. Sister Cluruso or something like that? I met her the first
time I went on exchanges and she's a very very nice lady and I got to
teach her my trusty Holy Ghost lesson as well! We finished off the
night by teaching their recent baptized family. I taught them the Holy
Ghost lesson, which was pretty perfect because they have been
baptized, but not confirmed yet so I got to tell them what they will
receive and how they can keep it in their lives! The family's oldest
daughter and her boyfriend sat in on our lesson for the first time,
and they participated a lot! It's great what you can do when you make
the gospel and the lessons fun! It wasn't too hard to listen because I
didn't know anyone in Stoudsburg so I got to listen and get to know
people a ton! I used the "exactly" thing a lot too and it worked
pretty well.

Friday we got to have interviews with our Mission President. It went
pretty well and everyone else was speculating what was going to happen
with transfers or whatever from their interviews and I guess I'm super
oblivious, but I didn't get any hints. President Anderson pretty much
told me we need to start doing more Recent Convert, Less Active
lessons, which is something we can definitely roll with! He also asked
if I feel like I could train, so I said yes, but I really don't want
to train a brand new missionary during the holiday's? Talk about a new
homesick missionary? Interviews took up most the day, because they
also did some training on mission and companionship unity. I'm not a
fan of the word "companion" so from now on I'll be using comrade,
because that sounds way cooler! I feel like our comradeship unity is
just peachy anyways so we are pretty good on that! We went home and
did our weekly planning, but then we heard about the attacks on
France, so we went over to Jeff's because he always know's what's up.
Man it's pretty nuts though, I feel bad for France. I was a little
worried about Elder Grayston, but then I figured they shoulda been in
bed, and even if he wasn't, he could probably handle himself one way
or another! As for my listening on Friday, it was pretty good because
Jeff never stops talking so I listened a lot!

Saturday we visited the Bakers and shared with their son, Daniel, the
mormon message "Your day for a mission" which is all about a rugby
star leaving rugby behind to serve a mission. He did great things on
his mission, and returned and continued to be a legendary rugby
player. Daniel is preping to serve soon, so we figured we'd just keep
encouraging him! We stopped by Jeff's to see if there was anything new
going on in France. We headed out to the Kennedy's for dinner, and I
taught them the Holy Ghost lesson as well. Hopefully one day we will
get Bro Kennedy to church, it's not an easy task, but neither was
growing a mustache and somehow I still did that!

Sunday we had stake conference, which was pretty weird because we met
in a high school auditorium. Going into the auditorium made me a
little homesick thinking about high school haha. I can't believe I
only graduated like 5 months ago and now I'm out on mission. Anyways
President Anderson gave a talk on members needing to be more involved
in missionary work, our Stake President, President Dursch, gave a talk
on getting prepared for the Philadelphia temple. Last stake conference
he challenged the stake to index 1,000,000 names in preparation for
the temple. Just this week the stake completed the goal! Everyone was
pretty excited about that! Then the area seventy, Elder Sinclair
talked about how he grew a pineapple plant in Indiana and pretty much
we can all do hard things and we need to be that pineapple plant in
the corn field. A few visits afterwards and dinner with the Roeselers
finished the week!

I apologize for so many words and no pictures! There's just nothing
cool to take pictures of out here! Anyways I think my listening skills
are pretty good! I think my talking skills are what need to improve,
but that will come over time! Transfer calls are this Friday, and
there's not really a reason for them to move me, but we are hoping
both of us get to stay. They want to keep this transfer meeting as
small as it can possibly be so everyone feels more "at home" for the
holiday's! So please pray we both get to stay here hahaha. Anyways as
always things are good here. I always miss you all, but I know there's
a lot of reasons why I need to be out here! I love you all, keep
France in your prayers and have a great week!

Elder Dylan Smith

No comments:

Post a Comment