Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Persistence and Planning


Changing things up this week with a Japanese introduction. Update on my study of languages, one of the members from the Yakima 3rd Ward who is a native Hawaiian gave me a book to begin learning Hawaiian, so you'll catch me becoming an islander over the next couple of months. 

All of our investigators have me looking at Elder Moser after each lesson and saying, "Elder, I know I say this for every one of our investigators, but I just LOVE this family. I think they're my favorite family to teach." Matt Palmer, one of our current investigators, is such a cool guy. He's been taught in the past and made some progress little by little, but we picked him back up again about two weeks ago and he has just been making leaps in bounds. He's the one ready and pushing his family to come to church and read and pray, so we've been redirecting some of our focuses to his less-active girlfriend to start getting her more involved. On Saturday we had a lesson and committed them to come to church. Our ward is probably the only ward in the whole world that has sacrament meeting starting at 8:30pm, so they both confessed that waking up might be hard. We promised them that we'd be at their door at 7am knocking and hooting and hollering to get them up and ready for church. We woke up the next morning at 6am, got dressed and ready, and made our way to Matt's house at 7amto do everything we could to get them to church. When we got there Matt was already ironing his shirt, but needed help getting everyone else up. We went in and I pulled a Bruce Rougeou and started singing songs about fishing for crawdads. Sarah began to wake up, and was excited and ready to go, but unable to make it. Matt and their youngest son Curtis made it to church and LOVED it. Curtis is almost 3 and didn't want to leave nursery when it was time to go. We went by last night and talked with the family again about why Sarah and Calvin. the 16 year old son, didn't make it. Sarah commited to herself to be there next Sunday and we made some plans to help her achieve her goal and we're really excited for her to come for Easter Sunday. She told me that I'm the most persistent person she's ever met, which was a pretty good compliment. She told us she'll probably cry when she takes the sacrament because she hasn't taken it in so long. Matt and Sarah are praying about when to get married so that Matt can be baptized soon after and they can begin working towards the temple. 

Another cool experience from this week is about a new investigator we found named Jamie. Last week while we were out tracting we knocked into this guy named Jamie. He told us he was 21 and I told him that I was also 21 and we started talking about how different our lives are despite being the same age. He lives with his girlfriend and their young 3 month old son. We told him we'd go back and see him some time the next week. Early one morning while prayerfully planning for our day, we were thinking of people we should try and see in the afternoon. I felt impressed to write Jamie's name down somewhere, so I put him at 2:30pm. Later that afternoon, I looked at my planner to check where we should go next. It was around 2pm, and I saw Jamie's name. I thought to myself, "I've already tracted that street and surrounding area, if we go there and he's not home we'd just end up driving somewhere else." Then, a different strain of thought began to enter into my mind. We had prayer, asking the Lord for his guidance, and I wrote Jamie's name down at that time. I decided we'd go and try and visit him.

Right as we pulled up we saw him on the side of his house raking leaves. I quickly parked and jumped out and ran over and told him we were there to help him rake leaves. He didn't believe us. He was very surprised and taken back as to why we were there, and probably more surprised to see us scooping dirty leaves into trash bags while wearing white shirts and ties. We raked leaves with him for an hour, and the whole time we talked and discussed the gospel. He asked for my favorite scripture story, and I started telling him about King Noah and Abinidi and he kept saying, "Well, what happened next?" and I told him everything from Abinidi all the way to Ammon teaching King Lamoni. It was incredible. He was so captivated, and we showed him the new #PrinceOfPeace video and he loved that as well and watched all the additional videos he could. We set up a return appointment to go back and give him his own copy of the Book of Mormon so that he can read the stories for himself.

Both of these experiences go pretty well with a big insight I took away from General Conference. I was praying leading up to conference asking God, "What can I do to be better? What would you have me do to fulfil thy will? Am I doing the right thing, am I on the right track for life?" Right before Elder M. Russell Ballard spoke, the holy ghost whispered to me. "Elder King, this one is for you." As Elder M. Russell Ballad began to talk about setting goals and making plans, I realized God was doing that thing where he doesn't give us a clear answer. He lets us make our own choices. Often times we expect God to tell us where we should go for school or work, where we should live, what should be our profession, what to do with our families, so on and so forth. God doesn't typically work like that, from what I've learned. Just like Elder Bednar talked about in conference, "whether to the north or to the south, to the east or to the west, it mattereth not, for ye cannot go amiss." (D&C 80) As long as we set righteous goals for what we hope to accomplish in our life, we cannot go amiss. We must be persistent in working towards our goals, always involve the Lord, and we'll get where we should be going.

Con Mucho Amor, 

Elder King

From the Editor:  Here are a few pictures from the Mission Blog

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