Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Week 32- A Good Week, Maybe Even Great

  I was happy to hear from Elder Schaff last night, but he kept us waiting, his blog email did not come through until nearly 9:00 pm here at home. It's too bad that he is always trying to write us at the very end of his preparation day because he is always running out of time. However, he was more positive and upbeat this week, and it appears that all is going well in the CFM. (California Fresno Mission)

  "Alright, this week was good. It was maybe even great. We're trying to get to amazing. 

  So interesting things first, right? Because I think I've written a lot of emails more like talks the last few weeks! 
  We had a good Sunday. It was a small miracle: Matilde came to church for the first time in about 3 months now! What a blessing! It's not over yet for my recent convert! What's more, we brought Hermano and Hermana Martinez with us to visit her and talked about the temple. When she heard their testimonies and realized that she could not go to the temple without attending church, she said right then that she wants to get to church every week. (This was on Thursday) I didn't know if that was a valid goal or if she just felt that was a good thing to say, but she made a good start by going this week and loved it. She stayed all 3 hours and the Relief Society women remembered who she was and are trying to help her more. The Lord's hand is always waiting to bless us.

  Yesterday we visited Matilde, and she gave us some fruits I had never seen nor tried before. The first is a "Nanche" or "Nance" depending on which country you are in. I didn't like it though, it was a yellow berry with a weird flavor. I was eating a berry, but it tasted like a weird cheese or something. Look it up I guess and find out what I ate! Ha!  The second fruit was a "Coyole." It's a small nut from some type of a palm tree, and there is a fleshy part on the outside that you can eat if you chew it off. The nut is super hard, so after you chew the fruit off you whack 'em with something hard and if you successfully break it something similar to coconut is your reward in the center. Look it up again... I'd never seen these things before! So that was kinda fun.

Nance Fruit

Maybe he is referring to the Cohune palm tree and it's nuts? I could not find anything the way that Hayden spelled it.

  On Saturday we had a great day. For me it was also very spiritual and uplifting.  We had 2 set appointments out of 9 hours of proselyting time available. The appointments were the last 2 hours of the day, and the first one of those ended up falling through!

  However, the story goes as follows: We began proselyting and tried to follow through with our plans to work in the area and follow up on some potentials. Well, we got one potential to open the door, she said she would like to listen, but really isn't ever home unless it is Saturday, in the which she will be found doing household chores and be too busy. We offered to help do chores next week so that we might teach her and her family, and she said maybe. We'll see what happens, but that is not the focus of this tale. We did not successfully contact anyone else that hour save for a man that was not religious. As he said, "I don't mind if you're Jehovah, Buddhist, Muslim, or Polytheistic, I'm not convinced." At that point I did not have very high hopes for the day. I imagined that the next 6 hours would probably pass like this one, wandering in neighborhoods and knocking silent doors.

    That was not the case! We visited our investigator "L", who has usually not been home, and taught her the Restoration. She liked the doctrines, and is excited to read the Book of Mormon and learn more. Then we went to our former investigators: "D" and "R" and had an excellent lesson with them. They think they need to keep listening to our message! The rest of the day was filled with a visit every hour, including a visit to a less active member that has been avoiding the church members because he doesn't want to talk with them. (Even though we had our ward mission leader with us, who is a member.) He shared an experience of his mission, promising a random Peruvian man that he would find a job the next day. The man hadn't had a job for 2 years. This was the first day of his mission. Interesting. 

  Well at that point, that evening I felt that I had been given a tender mercy of the Lord because in my heart, leaving that first hour of wandering I did not have any expectations for success, nor much enthusiasm, yet I was given this mercy of having a good day. Truly, though we are tried along this path of life, we are never forgotten by the Lord when things get rough.

  We also had a nice blessing on Friday when we knocked on the door of a potential, and a man came out that we hadn't talked to. He invited us in and we taught him The Gospel of Jesus Christ. He was glad to receive us and loved the lesson. He wanted us to return.

  This was only the 2nd time in my entire mission that we were let into a home on an initial contact. It really doesn't happen that much! (And I know that lots of people think that's missionary work!)

  This might make you laugh- we had one of the assistants with us for 3 hours because his companion got hurt so he decided to spend some time with missionaries in the zone and follow up with President Clark. We knocked the door of another potential with him, and our potential, Maria, was not there, but some English-speaking bum that storms out of the door saying "who the **** **** **** are you little ********!?!" and many swears after that. Elder Perkins, the assistant, says we're missionaries, and the guy says "get off my property, I know more about God than you stupid kids!" We stand there in shock, too shocked to move, and he swears at us some more. We leave, and he salutes the car and flips us off as we drive away. Some people just don't like God....... Heh heh.

--Elder Schaff

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