Monday, July 14, 2014

Week 49: We had a great planning session

So on Monday we didn't end up going on a bike ride, we did however go bowling and that was a lot of fun involving two balls that got stuck on someone's finger (I'm not naming who it was) and flew into the other lane's gutter. It also involved renting the lane for an hour between the 6 of us for 30 dollars total so 2 games for 5 dollars was a really great deal.
After P-day was over we had dinner and a picnic with the Niswanders and Mia's family in the park in Bagley. We were able to grill some hamburgers and while we were doing so it poured down heavily for about 5 minutes. Everyone ran to the pavilion, but Elder Briggs and I stayed and finished the hamburgers, dripping wet. It was fun though and made me and everyone laugh.

Mia has really enjoyed all the fellowshipping she has been getting this week starting with the Niswanders. We also helped Brother Dyrdahl with his home teaching to her the other day which she really enjoyed.

On Wednesday we went back over to Sister Sargent's home to help her with her family history and teach her how to prepare names to be brought to the temple. After we helped her out we were able to enjoy our efforts at using the crockpot to cook some chicken for lunch. Earlier in the day we had placed chicken breasts in the crockpot and covered them in barbeque sauce mixed with a little chipotle. They were really good. We also had some strawberries that Sister Niswander had given to us and so we decided to sugar them and place them on top of angel food cake for some strawberry shortcake. It was delicious.
That night we had another lesson with Alonda and Jim. We had the lesson on the Plan of Salvation where most of the time was spent resolving Alonda's concern about why bad things happen to good people. We promised her that we would search for an answer in the scriptures and come back next Wednesday prepared to address that particular concern. We found several scriptures in Alma chapter 14, 2 Nephi chapter 2, and D&C 121 about how challenges in our lives are there for our benefit and if we endure them we will be rewarded. We are going to share some videos with her from Mormon.org that will show other people who have gone through trials and relied upon the atonement to help them overcome those trials in their lives. Elder Briggs had this great idea and it will be perfect because Alonda likes spending a lot of time on computers and watching videos. By using these scriptures we hope to show Alonda the importance of reading the Book of Mormon to answer our personal concerns and challenges and also testify of its power in our lives.

We had a great planning session on Thursday which has really helped us focus on the needs of those that we are teaching. It is the last week of the transfer so we really were praying for inspiration and for miracles and we have already begun to see the effect of those miracles and that planning. We have several possibilities for new people to meet, service to give, and people coming to church.
On Friday they had a big Golf tournament here in Bagley. We offered to help Roger from the senior center move the steam table from there to the golf course. He was grateful for the help and we met a new person because of it who now waves to us each time we pass his house. Later Friday evening we helped Alvin and Leslie cook Kielbasa and Brats for dinner. We ate dinner with Mia, Alvin, Leslie, and brother Dyrdahl. We then had a great lesson. We really appreciated testimony brother Dyrdahl gave about the purpose of home teaching. We also were able to have a great lesson with Alvin and Leslie on the Plan of Salvation. Before, Alvin didn't feel he was ready to be baptized and saw it as something very far into the future, but after the lesson when we testified of doing baptisms for the dead, both Alvin and Leslie were touched by the spirit and desired very much to be baptized. Alvin recently had his father pass away so this knowledge has made him more eager to accept the Gospel and learn all about it.
On Saturday there was an event in Bagley called "Art in the Park" It was like a mini farmer's market with crafts everywhere, but not produce. We ate there with President Niswander and contacted several people including James who works at the "Lighthouse" a soup kitchen here in town. He asked for our help doing some construction work, mainly staining, at the homeless shelter and we readily agreed to do so. He also asked us if we could get him a copy of the Book of Mormon. We are going to help him out on Wednesday and also teach him the Restoration while we are there. Earlier in the day we had taught the Jim in Ebro a very powerful review of the Restoration where we testified of the purpose of church and invited him to come. He didn't make it but we felt we had provided him with the opportunity and were not disappointed. In fact he has made it to 4 Nephi in the Book of Mormon and is excited to get to the end. He was describing to us in detail the events from it so we can tell he is not lying to us. What a blessing we have been seeing in this area. Many people are being prepared not just in Bagley, but everywhere to receive the Gospel and it is because the Lord is hastening his work all over the world. We then studied for the last hour of the day to prepare for the class we would teach and the talk I would give on Sunday.
On Sunday we were picked up by President Niswander and then we picked up Deana. She finally overcame the barriers she was facing and was able to come to church. It was great!!!

She loved the fellowship and the feeling there and said she'd love to come back next week. The members were a huge part of this. Everyone talked with and welcomed her and she felt that it wasn't like other churches where she felt like an outcast. I know the Lord prepared her for this experience so that she would be ready to accept the Gospel and be baptized.
Well later today should be exciting. We have a dinner appointment with the Niswanders where we will be taught how to make stir fry. We also are trying to figure out what we need to do for fun today as a district and I also will be getting a haircut. It's been a great week. It is continuing to get better and a mission truly has been the best thing that I have ever done in my life. I recommend it to everyone.
With love,
Elder Davis

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