A Week of Service

Blog 7/31

Tuesday

This morning we had district meeting.  It was a good meeting and our district is really doing great right now.

We did exchanges after district meeting.  Elder Maedgen went to White Oak with Elder Burila and Elder Bair came to Hartwood.  I like Elder Bair a lot and we had a really good time.  Our afternoon was kinda slow.  We went to the store and got some milk for Del and dropped it off to him.  I also found these Oreos that are chocolate chip cookie and cookie dough oh my heck they are so good.  Well we didn't really have any success in the afternoon, we went around and knocked some doors, luckily it was cloudy today so the sun wasn't beating down on us.  We knocked for like 30 min and nobody even came to the doors.  Then we went and tried seeing some people on our lists and didn't really get anyone.

We had dinner at this pretty good pizza place with the Weeds.  She's a member and he's not.  So this pizza place was really good and they make to order so it came right out of the oven, plus when you buy one pizza you get another one free! So that's awesome but to top it off they have this chocolate cake that is the most rich thing in the whole world.

We drove around a little and were in one neighborhood and Elder Bair was like "Hey I know this place!"  They had taught a guy who was actually in our area and so we went and stopped by and actually got there right as he was getting home.  Couldn't have been more perfect timing.  Well this guy is made to be a Mormon, he's seriously so ready.  We talked to him about prayer and Enos and he was getting super spiritual, literally the most spiritual sidewalk lesson I've ever had.  Well we got his info and we're going to try back next week because he has company in town this week.

We also had a super good little lesson with one of our less active priests, Tristan.  He's a good kid but is just a little confused.  His mom is single and he is working almost full time and being a provider for the house which is a huge responsibility for a 16-year-old kid.  He's super genuine though and we went to his work and caught him on break so I talked to him about how he's doing and we basically taught him the Restoration.  He knows the gospel is true and just needs to find it out for himself.

Lastly we went and saw Sharron and Derek at the library.  She's really sincere about learning about the Church and being baptized but is going through a stressful time because they're getting kicked out of their apartment.  We had a really short lesson and kind of did a review of the Restoration and then blessed them that if they continue to read their scriptures and pray that God would help them find a place.  We also got a pastor and his wife to join in on a prayer that we said with them in the middle of the library, haha  That was awesome and that's one reason I love being in the South.

Wednesday

This morning we went and helped the White Oak Elders move the last of their big stuff from their old apartment to their new apartment.  They had some couches and tables and a couple other things that we put in a member’s trailer.  That went from like 9:30 till like 12 and then after that we went to Sugar Shack and got some donuts for lunch.  I got a Samoa one (like the Girl Scout cookie) and it tasted just like it but on a donut!

After that we went over to Del’s and he made us enchiladas for lunch.  They were pretty good and we just ate and talked for like 40 min then packed up and were going to go home and change.  Well as we were walking out the bishop called me and asked if we had any set plans for this afternoon.  We didn't so we got to go help someone move for the afternoon.  Man they have a ton of stuff.  They're a part member, less active family and are super nice.  They have this huge old Virginia looking house with 2 garages and are pretty well off.  The last thing we moved was huge!  It was this pool table that had real slate and wood and stuff, but it wouldn't come apart so we had to carry it from the basement out the door and up a hill to the truck! It was seriously like 900lbs I swear.  It reminded me of the talk a while ago "Lift Where You Stand."  That was a good little work out.

After the move thing we went home and ate dinner and changed so we could go out and work.  Our night was pretty chill and we went and tried knocking in this neighborhood that I've been wanting to go to for a long time.  I’ll be honest it really wasn't the most productive place in the world, it was really quiet.  We did meet one guy that we talked to that was a good learning experience for Elder Maedgen.  Forewarning, this man was not interested.  So he came to the door and started talking to us, but I knew right away that he wasn't interested.  He started telling us his beliefs and how he just believes we are here to be here and that religion is just something someone made up that gives people something to believe in.  Not that religion was a bad thing at all but just that it was made up and just promotes faith for people.  Well, I let Elder Maedgen talk to him for the first little bit and he did really well, trying to ask the guy how he came to this belief and other good questions about things he could lead into a lesson with.  The guy was really nice and not rude at all, just firm in his beliefs and not wanting to change.  Eventually they just came to an awkward standstill and I jumped in and we had a really nice talk with the guy about just some of the things we believe in for the knowledge of knowing it.  He didn't want to pray with us but blessed us good travels and was glad we were out there trying to do good.

Thursday

Today was long and felt kinda unproductive.  We had our usual studies in the morning.  Then at 11 we were supposed to go and see Chandler and have a lesson with her.  Well, she flaked out on us for the second time this week, but we did catch her later this afternoon and set up a time for tomorrow.

Most of our afternoon was filled with weekly planning.  It was a good planning session and then afterwards for a little bit we went and knocked doors.  Funny story, we were knocking in a complex where there are 4 doors in a hall.  We knocked 1 and then waited knocked again and waited then moved on.  Well while we were waiting for door 2 door one opened, well just after door 1 opened, door 2 opened too! Haha it was great and I took one door and Elder Maedgen took the other.  The people at my door didn't speak any English so I tried talking to them for a sec but it didn't work so I went over to help Elder Maedgen who was teaching the Restoration to a guy!  He ended up not being very interested but did say that he would read a pamphlet and maybe let us come back.

The rest of our night was pretty good.  We had our coordination meeting with Brother Boyd and he made us smoked Mac n Cheese with smoked venison, it was unreal.

Friday

So this morning was another service opportunity.  We helped an older family in our ward move just down the street to a different house.  They had movers that were doing the big stuff but we were helping with pictures and stuff like that, so it wasn't anything super hard.  After that we went and changed then had a lesson set up with a lady named Chandler.  Well we ended up getting there and she flaked out on us so we went home and finished our studies for Elder Maedgen’s training.

We had an awesome lesson with Emily and Fred and Sylvia this afternoon.  They want to get more into reading their scriptures so we read the story of Alma the Younger with them and they got really into it.  It was awesome and they liked it a lot.  This evening we tracted into a lady named Donna.  She was sitting outside watching her dog who is the smallest little Chihuahua I've ever seen and we walked up and started talking to her.  She said that she believed in Christ but wasn't ever super religions so we started from there.  We were able to teach her about the Restoration and talked about the spirit and it was really strong.  She said at the end she would read the Book of Mormon and pray about it and wanted to be baptized! God definitely helps us in the work.

Saturday

Today was alright.  This morning we had our 3rd appointment set up with Chandler this week and not surprisingly she flaked on us again! Yeah that sucked.  It rained really good till about lunch time today so that was meh haha I love the rain but not when I have to be out in it all the time.  We went over to the Demarees (the less active ones) and they weren’t home but their son was and it was really cool because he's not really into the Church anymore but he still talked to us.  Elder Maedgen shared a little message and we just talked to him for a bit, it was a short visit but still really nice.  He gave us this stuff called "pocky" which is basically a cracker stick that has chocolate on it, it's Japanese or something but it's unreal, so yeah.

After that we went tracting and didn't really talk to anyone.  Elder Maedgen got in a little bit of a slump, I think it's just the end of the week and he got a little wore out.  We talked to one Catholic guy who wasn't really interested but that was ok, feeling the spirit and teaching is what we are called to do.  It also helped Elder Maedgen with a little spiritual boost.

We had a killer Gospel of Jesus Christ lesson with Sharron and Derek today and set them on date! They really feel the spirit and see God’s hand in their lives.  The sad part is they're moving up to Stanford and so the missionaries up there are going to be the ones baptizing them.  Really excited for them though.  Lastly we taught a guy named Alex.  He's really intellectual, but then as the lesson went on he got more and more interested.  At the end we committed him to read and pray and if he gets and answer he said he would follow it, really good way to end the night.

Sunday

My Day

Today was good and I'll just write a couple highlights.  Church was good as usual, nothing really out of the ordinary.  John one of the recent converts here got ordained a priest so that was cool.  After church we had dinner and then went over to say goodbye to Caleb, he's leaving to go to the California Ventura mission on Tuesday.  He's gonna be a stellar missionary! 

Then after that we went to a couple lessons with Nolan.  We taught Brother Newago and shared the Restoration with him.  He hasn't been coming to church recently but really hopes to get back into it and said he would read his scriptures every day this week.  Then we went and saw the Gerber kids and watched a part of the Restoration movie with them.  They are really great and still moving right along.  I love teaching kids but it's hard sometimes haha love them though.  It was a great week and Elder Maedgen is becoming a great missionary, seemed like a long week but I can't believe it's already been 2 weeks with him.

Love you all,

Elder Larson