Familia y amigos!
Holy cow this week was very interesting! Haha! But before we get to stories and the title, I'm gonna answer some questions you all have been asking!
So my area currently has a ward, we have about 300 members, but only 90 are active so we visit a ton of less actives and part member families! There's no Spanish branch, but we have tried to visit all of our Spanish investigators and NONE of them have been home. But seriously though when you have a missionary name tag on some people treat you like you have a plague! Or my personal favorite is when we knock on people's doors and they come see its us, and tell everyone to be quiet because the missionaries are at the door. Haha but there have been some really funny stories from those experiences!
Iola and all the other areas are a whole lot like Snowflake and Taylor! A lot of people live out in the farm parts, like grandma and grandpas house, but there's always a center of town, like snowflake, in each of them!
Teaching: Like I mentioned we don't have many members who are active so we go visit a ton of less actives and part member families! Our area is huge, for example we have a mile budget every month and for our area we get 2300 miles.... Haha which is a TON! But ya we visit a lot of people and this week we are going to the VC tomorrow with a part member family and we are super excited! We have a lot of appointments set up for this week and I'm really excited!
So here's how the week went (sorry for the list!)
~ Wednesday we had a mission fast and wow it was way awesome! President Vest called us that night and has issued what's called the atonement initiative, where we spend our personal study reading about the atonement in the scriptures and answering some questions about each one we read! It has truly been amazing!
~Thursday we had Zone conference and it was absolutely amazing! We talked about the initiative and working with members! And at the end I got asked to bare my testimony, will get back to that later! *cough* 2.0 *cough*
~Friday we spent a ton of time trying to get in touch with people here in Iola and out of 16 people only 2 were home. But we did get to go visit our the Fournell family, she speaks Spanish and he is a non member and they invited us over for the 4th because no one signed up to feed us!
~Saturday the moment you have all been waiting for, the title of the email. So our bishop lives out in the boonies and we drove out to his house in the morning for a meeting that was actually at the church so we hopped back into the car and as we were driving back there was a turtle on the edge of the lane in the road. Well I saw it and just moved the car closer to the left lane and then when we passed him he was gone and we just thought it was weird. Well not even a minute later a light comes on on the dashboard. And lot and behold the light meant low tire pressure. Any guess what happened? No? Well yours truly missed him with the front tire and in doing so ran him over with the back tire and his shell popped it. By the time we got to the church our car was sagging in the back. We went to our meeting and decided to change the tire in the parking lot because both of us have way cool dads who taught us how to change a tire. Thanks dad! But our dads forget to tell us about the kind of heavy duty arm work outs that are necessary to have muscles strong enough to get the nuts off the tire to change it. After about 20 minutes of literally jumping on the wrench, our bishop who was still at the church, came and one handed unscrews them all off. Bishops Rock. Well anyway after that we had to go to Wal Mart and buy a new tire and it took up majority of the plans we had to go visit people in one of our Towns, Chanute, and that was frustrating but our tire is fixed and we are back in business! That night we went to the Fournells and had dinner with them and their neighbors and we watched them light off fireworks and then went home for the night.
I don't have much time left, but 2.0 for the week:
So the atonement initiative has been so cool, when we were at Zone conference they asked us to take 5 minutes and think about what the atonement is to me. As i sat thinking about it, and image popped into my mind. In life we look into a mirror. My mirror was of missionary work. All the thoughts and ideas of what mission life would be like and sometimes our mirrors, or ideas, get shattered, either by another person, Satan, and sometimes ourselves. As you fall to your knees you frantically try to figure out how we are going to put it back together. There are so many pieces or things that need to get fixed and as you try to put it back together you get cuts and then anger, frustration, stress and finally helplessness set in. As you sit there kneeling, you feel a person come behind you and softly ask what's wrong. As you explain your situation, they listen intently. When you finish, tearing rolling down your cheeks the person tells you that they know exactly how to fix your mirror and they even tell you they can make the things you see in the mirror even better than they were before and all you have to do is ask him and be willing to help. As you turn around to tell this person there's no way the view could have been better, or even be prepared, you see the Savior, tears rolling down his cheeks and you embrace him and the two of you go about rebuilding your mirror. To me this is the atonement. Sometimes our mirrors,our lives, get chipped, cracked and even shattered, but with the Saviors atonement we can with him rebuild our mirrors and start to see the bigger picture each time it is remade. I know the atonement is real. I see it work in my life everyday. Whatever you are all going through I know the Savior can help you be restored to an even better state than you been in before. He lives! And his atonement is only a prayer away.
I love you all so much! I feel your prayers and love everyday! As I have been learning Spanish I feel them tons more as I strive to learn and understand the language so thank you, I am truly blessed! Have a fantastic week!
Te quiero mucho!