This week flew by. I love my new companion. We are working so well together and having huge success. We started out the week visiting a less active who may be a J.W. Well it turns out he is a strong J.W. but is not quite one because if he was then he could not drink and stuff like that. So he believes in it all but does not commit so he can still drink. Anyway... He made me want to punch him the face!! We were being so kind and caring and he took everything the wrong way. Man he had a hardened heart. We could not even bare a simple testimony to him without having some "argument" come up. Don't even get me started on the Book of Mormon. To him that book is from the devil. Sooo... To sum up we are not going to visit him anymore. I got so feed up that he would not even just listen to us for a second to maybe see that he is missing something. At the end we asked why he initially joined the Mormons and he says his mom forced him and he was never interviewed. He just got dunked without knowing. We both thought that sounded funny but are just gonna let him be. He is too far gone. It was sad.
That was about the saddest part of the week, from there it only got better! We meet with a man named James Lowery. He is an ex-member. Everyone he lives with goes to church but since he is EXed he does not come. Since the first day we got here we always visit him. He is by far my most favorite man!! We figured out how he can get back to being a member and have really worked with him by visiting him and just being his friend. Well our hard work has paid off. He came to church. All dressed up in a white shirt and everything!! It was so amazing. I had the biggest smile the whole day. We have set him on a baptism date. He is quite stubborn but fun and we joke around all the time so currently he is set for April 1, 2018. Haha he has got some time but we are gonna get it to a year sooner. haha such a great guy.
Speaking of great guys, I have talked a lot about Angus and his family. Well they are amazing. Angus and his family are progressing so fast and so strong. They have been through all the lessons and now we just are reading the Book Of Mormon and making sure they understand everything. Like I have said before it is marriage that is keeping them from baptism. Well we were able to set a date for them to get married and then they wanted to get baptised that same day since they are using the chapel to get married at. Jan 25, 2017. Angus loves the gospel so much that he has been sharing it with his parents. He has done so well preparing his parents. We got them some Book of Mormons. They live about an hour out of town so we have not visited them yet but when we do Angus is going to come help us teach. Haha he is not even a member yet and he wants to share. As he has taught his parents they want to be baptized. So we need to put them on a date. The family thinks it would be a cool experience to have the baptism after the marriage ceremony since all the family and friends are already there. Sorta 2 for 1 deal. He wants his parents to go on that same day. I am praying that I will still be in the area.
Now that I have a BIG Samoan comp we eat a ton and work out all the time. Push up competition every night and stuff like that. This last week every morning at 6 we rode our bikes over to Angus's house and worked out at the gym that he has. First off Angus is big muscle wise and so is Elder Talaipa. Well those of you who know me I am a skinny mate. I have muscle but not huge. Well they have put me through the ringer. I have never been so sore in my life. It is fun but while I am bench pressing 40 kilos and getting tired they go up to 85. Haha hopefully I come back a little bigger. It has been fun and Angus loves it. He loves the spirit that we bring. Such a good man.
He came to church with his whole family and participated in everything. Elder Talaipa gave a talk and Angus asked me how he could get up and give one. I was like WHAT?? you’re not even a member and you want to go up there? Most members don’t want to go up. So he will be giving us a talk here soon and will get up on fast Sunday to bare his testimony. It is so fun to see him grow in the gospel.
Over the week we had Thanksgiving. It was boring. Not the typical Cahoon style party with family all around and some basketball. Sad I missed out on that. It looked fun though. The senior couple held a dinner so we drove over to Townsville and we had the TV elders and sisters there and their branch president. It was fun but it felt like a normal dinner. I am not complaining it was a free dinner. With it being about 40 every day it just didn't feel like Thanksgiving time.
We sang a Christmas songs the other day. I said to my comp no no it is way to early to sing Christmas songs. Then I remembered what day it was. It is time for Christmas just not a normal one. It just looks wrong seeing decorations out in the summer. It has testified to me that I need the snow. haha oh well. Enjoy it for me.
We have been praying super hard to find new solid people to teach and miracles have been happening. We first meet a mom named Tianna and she did not want anything to do with us. Well the Holy Ghost worked at her and we got an appointment with her and taught the restoration. She loved it and said it gave her hope. Now she is willing to have us teach her more. She is evening thinking about baptism. She wants to pray before saying yes. So that was just so great!! We said our closing prayer for the lesson and prayed for rain. It was a powerful prayer for it being her first time. The next day it just stared to dump. So we texted her “look at the power of prayer.” She loved it so much. Elder Talaipa and I were in the flat having dinner when it started and you will never believe who the first one was to strip down and run out into the rain. Elder Talaipa. So I am not the only crazy one. The storm lasted a couple of hours which is really rare so we sorta just played in the rain until it was time for bed. It is the closest thing we can get to swimming.
We have another YSA who we taught the restoration to and it blew her mind. She is catholic and she said, “This is something I have never heard before and a lot to take in.” It took lots of explaining but she understood it and just wants to pray too. She is very interested and is going really well.
I want to talk a little bit about how me and my new companion are. We are having so much fun together. There is never a dull moment. One of his favorite saying is "The church is true." We have started saying it so much. Even to investigators. When they say, “Oh yeah that makes sense” we say, “You wanna know why? BECAUSE THE CHURCH IS TRUE.” haha it is the best. It is little stuff like that, that has unified us as a companionship. We are also always singing. In the car, while tracking, all the time in the flat. I am really hoping we are gonna stay together for a transfer.
Elder Talaipa shared a story with me that has made finding our number one priority. To sum it up it said "Imagine you had a best friend in the pre-earth life. Together you did everything and when you found out God has this plan for you both to come to earth. Together you get your "life package" I read mine. It said I would grow up in the church and know of my brother Jesus Christ. We both were so excited. You read yours silently and tears fell down your face. You would not have the opportunity to grow up knowing about Jesus Christ and the gospel. You looked at me in the eyes and said, “Friend find me. Whatever it takes, please find me."
This simple story changed it all for me. We went from contacting about 20 people a day to 50 people. I used to hate going out in the heat walking around and talking to people and getting rejected. Now it is my favorite thing to do. I don't let any rejection get me down or dull my spirit.
Elder Holland gave a talk to missionaries that said, "President? Why is it not easier? It is the truth. We believe in angles and miracles. Why isn't it that the only thing we have to worry about is getting sick of being in the font all day and night baptizing people?" He then goes on to say," This isn't church doctrine just my own personal belief. It is because salvation is not easy!! Salvation was never a cheap experience. It was not cheap for him so why would we think it would be cheap for us?" The talk proceeds to go on and it is powerful. It changed how I looked at things and how I can work harder. Salvation is possible but it is not going to be a simple thing. To find people ready for salvation you have to work HARD. What I am meaning to say is I love being on a mission and it is not easy but it is worth it. We have some of the funnest times but it is not all fun and games. It is people’s salvation on the line. So I need to work as hard as I can to find that best friend and to help him see the truth again.
One thing that drives me crazy when finding is people answer the door "ah nah mate I'm all good." I just want to say so bad, “No mate your not good. Take 10 minutes to listen to us and then see if you are good.” It just pains me to see a son or daughter of Christ deny the opportunity to come to the truth. We have started to say funny stuff like “oh well I haven't even said anything yet.” One time Elder Talaipa said, “Oh you don't need some extra money for the week.” That man had us come back we started to talk about the restoration. He caught on quick and kicked us off his porch.
Ok that was my rant for the week. Hope it was good. Thanks for all the love. I am doing great and having so much fun and feel so much love.