Saturday, May 28, 2016

May 16, 2016 Only one more of these left to go!

Hiya Fam!

We had a good week this week!

Monday was a day of miracles! So many people we talked to and the whole time we felt guided by the Lord! It was incredible! 

Tuesday was alright.

Kidding. It was my birthday on Tuesday, for those of you who didn't know. Really enjoyed it!! I went out of the room real quick to turn on the heating, and when I came back in, the Sisters were holding a cake with a candle on it and everyone was singing Happy Birthday!! It was a delicious carrot cake! So nice of them.

Then Elder Moore and I went out to Alloa to interview J J, the Sister's investigator. Elder Moore and I had lunch at their flat then we went out to meet them and J at a cafe before we went to a member's house to do the interview. We got there, the sisters arrived, and we then waited for J.

And waited. And waited. And waited. The sisters were devastated. Elder Moore and I had to get going for an appointment though, so we left for Falkirk again. We met with C G. Helped him with his garden again, discussed the Sabbath day, then we had to get to M and A's. 

So in the middle of our lesson with C, we got a text from Elder Ward, telling us that he and Elder Barton had GQ'd a guy, and had set up an appointment for that very night at McDonalds, but unfortunately they wouldn't be able to make it, so they asked if we could. The appointment was at 7:30, and it was now almost 7. We went to M's and explained the situation, and he said we could go to the appointment. I felt so bad! But he was fine with it. Gave me a bit of a hard time about it, but he was fine. As we were walking to the bus stop, E drives up! We explained the situation and asked if she could give us a lift. She said sure, but we needed M to be there in the car. M had to bring Ma along as well. He said they were going to get some dinner anyways, so it was alright.

So they dropped Elder Moore and I off at the McDonalds. We were waiting there for a little bit when I realized: we had no idea what this guy looks like! So I sent them a quick text, then we went outside to hopefully spot him easier. 

And there were the other Elders! Elder Barton and Elder Ward! They didn't quite explain themselves, just said they needed to use the restroom, but rather than go into the McDonalds, they went into the Nando's. Do you remember Nando's? It's a Peri Peri restaurant. It's really fancy! And there was E and M and Ma!! SURPRISE!!!! It was really fun! Delicious food (I tried the spiciest sauce they had: Xtra Xtra Spicy. It was fine), such nice friends, and they even got me a cake! :) Great way to end the birthday, I say!

Oh, and even better, the night before I had baked my own cake! So I had 3 birthday cakes! 

But wait, there's more! After we were back at the flat, the Sisters called and told us the good news: they'd found J!! He'd apparently been on the second floor of the cafe, and we'd missed him!! So Elder Moore and I went back to Stirling the next day. Interviewed J (he was such a prepared guy, I thought he was just reading the answers off a cheat-sheet!!), He's a really cool guy! He even got the priesthood on Sunday!!   We had a few more appointments. It was a good exchange. Longest one I've ever had! Almost 48 hours! Oh, and while I was away, the Relief Society President gave the other Elders ANOTHER cake!! So 4 cakes!! The District meeting cake was gone by the end of District Meeting, and the one I baked is gone now. But still got two cakes left!! Aggghhh!!!

Thursday we met with S again. He had a few questions from his Book of Mormon reading, which we answered. We also had lunch there, which was good. Tried coleslaw for the first time! It was okay. Then we went to G's and helped her out with her fence. W, a member here, helped us out. He then gave us a lift to a LA lady Elder Ward and Elder Barton had met. She asked if we could help move a patio table from her daughter's house to her own, which we did. Then we had BSL class, which was fine. Then we met with J.

Oh J. Essentially at the end of the lesson he challenged us to a bible bash to try and prove that the Trinity isn't true. We're going to go there and focus on the Book of Mormon instead, then see where we go from there. But PLEASE pray for him. We need a miracle.

Friday morning we met with M and A. We taught them about keeping the Sabbath day holy. They got the hint. They committed to come to church, and to make the day as holy as possible. It was a great lesson!! :)

Then we went to A M's. Before we even began his friend R told us "There are two roads, one leads to heaven the other leads to hell. Both look great, so how do you know which one to go down? Rely on the word of God." Then he asked us to study the Bible alone and to think about our path. Thank goodness some of A's students (he teaches piano lessons) showed up right then, because Elder Ward was this close to standing up and rebuking him!! Same here. Neither R nor J realize something: I'VE ALREADY STUDIED!! I'VE ALREADY DONE ALL THAT! I got my answer! Do you think I'd be out here if I hadn't???

Oh well. After that we went home so I could plan for District Meeting. The STL's and the Zone Leaders will be coming, so the size of our meeting has nearly doubled! Then we went by referrals and Gq'd until we had our dinner appointment with W and his Mum.

Saturday we meant to go to the baptism in Alloa, but there was a bus mixup, so it didn't happen. :( Apparently President and Sister Donaldson came!!! Dang it! Oh well. We were able to make it to A's this way. Those trees we planted for her have come along nicely! We ripped up all the grass in her garden. She didn't want it anymore. Then we had a dinner appointment with the I's, so we went to their neighborhood and chapped around. It was a nice neighborhood!

The dinner was great. Brother I took us up to his "mancave" where he makes and paints tin soldiers. He has a whole army of them, and he's pretty good too! It looked really fun, wouldn't mind giving it a try someday.

They took us to M's after that and we had a great lesson with her! She said she couldn't make it this Sunday, but she knew she needed to go to church, so she said she'd come next Sunday!!! She gave the closing prayer for the first time as well!! Things are looking up for her!

Sunday was Branch Conference. The Stake Presidency came, along with several other Stake people. In fact, there were just as many Stake people as there were Branch members!! But M didn't come. Still don't know why. We need to see him and meet with him!!! 

After church we went by a ton of referrals, gave a book of Mormon to Scott Major (I thought he'd asked for one to give to somebody, but it turns out that his Ipad wasn't working so he needed a regular book version of the BoM. But still good! Maybe he can give it to somebody in the future. 

That was our week! We tried having Pulled Chicken yesterday using Root Beer a member had given us! It was good!! :9

I'm thinking of just leaving behind most of my white shirts and trousers. Not all of course, I need them! Just leave behind the ones that are the most worn. Is that okay? 

Talent is like a mix between fudge and caramel. It's the texture of fudge, but the flavor of caramel.  Great!

Thank you so much for the birthday money!!! :)   I'm getting a Sporran. It's a thing the Scottish would use to hold their hip flasks while wearing a kilt. But don't worry, I can find other uses for it!! :)

Just keep following the royal line, every person that has "Sir" or "Lady" at the beginning of their name and it will lead you to the King!  We're royalty!

Okay, so here's something that's been on my mind lately. Just how gradual being Born Again is. Looking back on my mission (and I've been doing that a lot lately), I can see just how much I've changed, little by little, step by step. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is designed to change us into a perfect person, but all too often I get frustrated and impatient with myself for taking so long! But we all are on that path, and that path stretches on into the eternities! We've got plenty of time to become perfect, all we have to do today is to be better than we were yesterday, to take each and every step along that road. Lehi never described exactly how long the path was to the tree of life, but if you read his dream, you'll notice that it took him several hours!!! That's quite the dream! It will take us a long time too! But we just have to keep doing what's right. 

Anyways, love yas!! I've only got one more left!! How weird is that??? Talk to yas then!! :)

Elder Bates

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