Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Just One Sacrament Meeting

Lots of walking. nothing but walking, really. It's a real struggle. I got on my bike on Friday for about half a mile and my side hurt so bad I got off and sat down on the sidewalk. Good times. So then we walked. Like pioneer children we walked and walked and walked and walked.... and waaaaaaaalked. And all the walking made my knee hurt way worse! So I bought a knee brace, and that's helped. Until God tells me to slow down, I can't slow down, the kingdom of God has to roll forth somehow, haha.

 I guess we're doing a good job and God knows we can survive without as much support, because people have been real rude to us the past couple days! It's cool though, people were probably way more rude to Noah when he was building an ark. People just need to be less sour. I keep trying to tell them the gospel can help with that, but they don't let me say it! Silly people.

 Anyway, we were out walking and this guy literally walks out of a field to talk to us. Like he was walking through this totally deserted field and came up to us just as we passed by. He's all "Hey Elders! I used to be a Mormon!" And he rambled on to us for a long time. I was like is this guy good? is he fine? And then he finally mentioned that he'd been drinking already and it made more sense. For some reason inactive members just seem to come back a lot more when they're drunk. he told us all about how he'd fallen away and felt kinda incomplete and wanted to be reconciled with his family but he felt too prideful. He didn't let us talk much, but we tried to get the idea across to just... come back. But oh well. Someday he will I bet. God might respect our agency, but He sure doesn't let people go their whole lives without a fight.

 Let's see, other blessings of walking everywhere... Spending time more wisely? We need to be out as long as we can because it takes a million years to get everywhere. And while we can ask for rides sometimes... that's a lot of asking for rides. Because all the areas where it feels like work needs to be done are not right next to our apartment, haha. It could be worse, it could be not windy and 70 degrees. Except for one afternoon, the weather has been beautiful this week!

 That one afternoon was really really wet though. We got dropped off near our dinner with an hour or so to tract. Then right after our ride left, it started pouring. There was thunder and lightning too. But the Spirit was like "KNOCK ON DOORS, YOU FEEL GOOD." so we did. And finally, right before dinner, after knocking in the rain for an hour, we knocked on our dinner's neighbor's door, and it turns out that they're a part-member family that no one knew was there! So that was actually really cool. We only got to talk to them for a minute though.

 On that same day we had zone conference. It was good, but there was so much talk of diligence and all that is required to have spiritual power, and with all the trouble we've had and all my struggles I just felt totally and completely inadequate and like I couldn't possibly be good enough for what God wanted from me. But then President got up and said it seemed like some of us felt that we were just too inadequate and couldn't measure up and I was like "Me! Exactly!" And then he told us not to worry- as long as we're trying and sacrificing, we are only one sacrament meeting away from being perfect. What a comforting thought. I mean, we have general conference and then stake conference in a row, but at least we had this past sunday! And it gives us something to look forward to. And back to. I suppose that's really in the spirit of the Atonement, huh?

 So just remember. You're only one sacrament meeting away.
 Elder Adams

The Ministry of Angels

Hey all! I was reading 1 Nephi (again) this week. Every time I get something new out of it. This time I realized some of the magnitude of what we're doing here. Being part of the "great and marvelous work" means that we're messengers from the Lord, and part of that angelic ministry. Not to claim any credit or anything, I'm actually a pretty terrible angel, the Spirit does most of the work, haha.
 It's been a pretty alright week. We had exchanges and I walked man, many miles that day. Pretty much all the way across Lancaster. Gotta love helping with Spanish work. It's a good time, really. Pretty different sometimes though. I only catch about every third word, but it's enough to understand some of what's going on, and boy howdy do Spanish missionaries have to be bold.
 We had a cool experience with prayer this week! Elder Webb and I said a prayer to give away a book of mormon in an area that was pretty hard to find people in, and a guy came up and started talking to us really soon afterwards! I mean, he was pretty stoned, but he was still talking to us, and we taught him the restoration and gave him a copy. So I guess it works? But in all seriousness it was really cool.
 Some members were talking to us last night about work and how it was difficult for them to do missionary work with their friends at their workplaces (a surrogate motherhood insurance company in California and a Hollywood movie paramedic) and we got to share with them the power of Mormon messages and posting positive things online! They hadn't thought about it before, and were really excited to hear how powerful of an avenue it is! I

In other news, I crashed my bike! The bike is fine (actually better than before) but I was a little banged up. Taking it easy for a couple days for the sake of my knee. Ouch ouch, but nothing lasting. Also pulled a muscle in my side. Hopefully. Otherwise it would be a hernia or an ulcer or something. But whatever, it's totally fine! I can feel the Lord supporting us in this work, and we'll be fine as long as we're obedient and give it our all.
 Thanks for supporting your local (and foreign) missionaries!
Elder Adams

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Ides of March

...are way warmer than March should be. It feels like it's late May back home, not the month that it is. I even got sunburned this week. Wasn't expecting that. It's been a week certainly. We spent all of Tuesday helping some nonmembers move from Lancaster to Palmdale because "all of the missionaries in Palmdale were getting transferred." It was cool though I guess. They'll remember us. We also helped some other missionaries move and a part-member family that we helped move sent us a card! We're making some other missionaries in the future or in other places very very happy, haha. We keep finding people who sound interested but we don't meet again! It's a little frustrating, but better than meeting no one! We've gotten lots more referrals too, and they're at least willing to let us do service. I'm glad the members trust us enough to tell us about people. I've learned a lot about patience and gratitude this past little while, about not merely surviving through hard times, but actively trying to learn and work through them. It's cool how the Spirit shows us stuff that we hadn't noticed before. Thanks for supporting your local missionaries! obligatory Cesar joke. 3. A Sign. We actually park our bikes here a lot

Sierra Ward

Yep, I'm staying for another six weeks! With Elder Webb, too!Transfers already, how crazy. It doesn't feel like it's been six weeks.

This week was another slow one. Lots of stuff has come up. But we helped a part member family move and the husband was super impressed! So some other missionaries somewhere else are probably going to be very happy with us, haha. We also got a couple of good referrals this week, but stuff keeps preventing us from meeting with them! How frustrating! I'm glad the members are giving us referrals and inviting us to eat with their friends. Hopefully we'll be able to show them some fruits of their combined labors.

The mission should just give us a car, our bikes are nothing but trouble. Elder Webb's been having headlight trouble so we have to avoid riding at night and one of my brake pads fell off last monday. Not sure how it even came loose in the first place. Plus, riding into the wind is no fun, especially uphill. Why is Lancaster so windy I don't even know. It'll be getting up to 78 this week, according to the weather, so that means it'll be like 63 with the wind chill.

Sorry for no pictures this week, I forgot my camera :P

Elder Adams