|The view from our apartment in Wyoming|
We had an odd week.
We spent a bit of time knocking on Tuesday after all our lessons planned fell through... We knocked in a new area because we were a little tired of the area we've been knocking. It was in this nicer area so it was mostly white. We didn't get in a door the whole street and only two people opened to say they weren't interested without giving us a chance to talk. At least it was a nice day. It was actually slightly warm and I had a white shirt I re-hemmed into a short sleeved shirt so it was decent. On our way back to the car we saw a guy selling door to door. We made eye contact, but he was trying to make a sale, and I could tell we both were debating whether to talk to each other because we both were trying to talk to people (haha). He didn't finish the sale before we passed him and got in our car, he walked over and he was like "Elders?" and turns out the guy's from Richmond up here doing summer sales and served an LDS mission in Cancun, Mexico. He asked if we had a lesson and we had one so we brought him with us, because why not? We talked a little and headed to the lesson. The lesson fell through but it was so funny, I don't think there is another church in the world where you can make friends anywhere in the world so easily. There is a talk by Brad Wilcox about what you get by joining the Church that's pretty good and from my confirmation bias very true.
report on the talk
We had two really good lessons with the Aguilar family. I think they're finally understanding baptism. It's a covenant with God that you're going to do your best to follow his direction. Baptism isn't something for once you know everything or are perfect. If that were true no one besides Jesus would've been baptized. Our next visit we are going to put them on date and I think they will commit to truly be baptized then. They are super ready. They're basically already dry Mormons, they feed us like once every other week or so and are more active than some of the members. We had a dinner with them this week and shared a really short message. We showed the new restoration video that's like 5 minutes long. It's awesome, I believe I've mentioned it before, if you haven't seen it, it's called something like "Ask of God, Restoration." After the video Natividad and his wife just kind of sat in silence obviously in deep thought. The spirit was so strong and he just looked at us and said "wow." Reflecting on it now we probably could have put them on date then. Still learning.
View the video "Ask of God"
That same day was kind of a roller coaster.
We got shined and canceled a bunched before and had a really crazy lesson with this lady. She asked us a bunch of crazy questions, it was super weird though. She kept asking what seemed like leading questions but turned out to be sincere. At the end she told us other pastors and preachers she has talked with told her that Mormons are evil. I asked her what she thought and she said we "probably weren't" haha "but looks can be deceiving." She also talked about the Illuminati and a bunch of other crazy stuff, including a really cool out of body experience she had that changed her life.
We had a lesson with an eternigator a few days ago who has met with missionaries for like 7 years. His teaching record is like 7 pages long. We just talked about the Book of Mormon and he had almost no idea what it was. He thought it was about Joseph Smith and a bunch of stuff like that. It is so important for anyone who is learning about the church to have a solid foundation. Without that you will not learn. The next step is to read. Cover to cover. The Intro, title page, and testimonies of the various people who assisted in translation/transcription or the early restoration of the church helps understand where it came from and why it's important. The stories are good, but the stories are not why we have any of the scriptures. The precepts, principles, ideas conveyed and the spirit you feel as you look and pray to receive an answer are what's important. If everyone truly understood this instead of just knew that, missionary work would be so easy.
Saturday and Sunday were really good. We got called by a referral we got from some elders and they asked if we could come over asap. We did and got a pretty good long anti session. The whole time I was thinking about the times that the pharisees would ask Jesus questions and the bible would say that they asked tempting Jesus. Elder Waters fell into the various traps and the lesson became really contentious. It's never worth answering truly leading questions. We are here to teach and help, not argue and bible bash. The guy was a jerk and was yelling at us as we left. It's kind of nice at the very least not speaking the same language, because its really easy to ignore the dumb things people yell at us sometimes. I really like the line "but Jesus held his peace" (Mathew 26:63) because reacting to what people do to you is a choice. If you don't give them anything they don't have anything to take.
Bienvenido is still working on his apartment. We had a lesson with him and we went over the story in Mosiah 24. It was a decent lesson. It's kind of fun teaching him because nobody understands what he says and he is this little old man. Halfway through the lesson he quietly just walked off and slowly opened the closet and spent like 5 minutes reaching for something. The Westons came with us and we all just made eye contact because everyone was confused. Turns out he remembered he had some ties to give us. He didn't say anything, he just got up and left and brought us some ties. We thanked him for the ties and continued with the lesson. I can't wait until the next life so I can talk with him and finally understand him and hear the stories I'm sure he has. At the end he kept trying to say Book of Mormon in English, It was really funny.
some pics as promised :
our pet squirrel who stops by every day around 9am