Monday, May 16, 2016

week #17 week 2 in Polaris

Week two in Polaris! It hasn't gone the way I've expected it to by any
means. Was definitely sick during the middle of the week. Elder
Henderson (our District Leader's, Elder Gardner, companion) and I were
sick together for a couple of days. Elder Hougland and Elder Gardner
went out and tracked and taught a few lessons during those days. On
the bright side of everything, I got my bike! It's so much better than
the "too good to be true," freed bike.

The biggest takeaway I feel that I was able to gain from Zone
Conference, or what hit me the most, was something that Elder Dildine
said: "The Atonement is more than a blanket of grace. It is a one on
one guide and tutor that allows us to fully rely on Jesus Christ." As
was mentioned during Stake Conference, we sometimes lose the value and
the sight on Jesus Christ and how important He really is in all of
this. The closer we are to Christ, the less people are able to affect
us and how we worship. When I was younger, I felt as though I couldn't
go to church at times because there were people that I just could not
get along with. As I grew older, I recognized that it is my belief, my
faith, and my choice. Sometimes I'm not able to put into words how I
feel, or explain what I say, but this weekend I was able to find a way
to describe my progression from a time when I was about sixteen years

On Saturday I had the opportunity to go on exchanges with Elder
Gardner. Such a blast! He is a convert to the church, which you would
never be able to guess, and his story is even more incredible in my
mind. We are two peas in a pod! He's from Idaho Falls and we are
similar in a lot of ways. We met a guy named Jim who invited us in his
home to spend about fifteen minutes trying to tear down everything we
believe. He loves his Bible and referred to us as a counterfeit
religion, false doctrine, cult, and told us we were going to hell
about four or five times. I love opportunities like those to simply
bear testimony of the truth we know, and leave an invitation. I'm very
sad for the nearly 90 year old man, but I'm sure he will accept the
gospel eventually. We left though being able to laugh at the
situation. We went later that night to stop by a less active member a
little later, and the member slammed the door in our face. We were
walking away when he came back out and told us to never come back and
that we were harassing him. Apparently he would have called the cops
on us if he hadn't been in a "good mood." He was pretty ticked though.
We had a long conversation with him where he continued to get upset.
He threatened us and future missionaries and members who may stop by.
We explained that if he doesn't want to be bothered to have his
records removed so they are taken off our contact list. He told us to
do it and wouldn't want to write a four sentence letter to the bishop.
We gave him bishop's contact information regardless, and told bishop
about it that night. He decided he would stop by the next day, and
Elder Gardner told me that it wasn't the member that had been yelling
at us, it was his husband. The husband got told off by The member to
be more kind to missionaries when they stop by. Sadly, he still had
his records removed.

It was great to go to the temple with Alfonso and Irma on Friday
night. They loved it and I know they are excited to go back. We are
hoping to be meeting with Amber again this week to get her moving
towards baptism, but her work schedule is pretty crazy. Don, who came
to church yesterday, is another investigator we are going to be
focusing on. He's been meeting with missionaries for a while, but
hasn't really progressed much. We will be starting over with him and
getting him going with more commitments and invitations. He's a great
guy, and very Christlike. He has a lot of potential and we are excited
to work with him!

We went to the zoo today! I guess it's on of the biggest/best zoos
around. It was pretty fun! It was our district activity, so all the
elders and sisters in our district came with us. I'll send more
pictures of it next week.

I'm so grateful for the wonderful experiences that I've been able to
have this week. I hit four months on Wednesday, and it's surreal to
think that the time has flown by. The missionaries that I'm able to
work with just add to the adventures that I'm having out here.

I love and miss you all! Until next week.

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