Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Week 39 - Mother's Day Call Home

  This last Sunday was wonderful, because it was one of only two days a year that Elder Schaff can call home. He was able to Skype with us for 40 minutes around 7:00 pm here in New York. He looked and sounded great, was happy and smiling. Emails are okay each week, but it was great to be face to face with him again. This is what he wrote home on Monday-

  "I always feel tired at the end of preparation day! Also, in the California, Fresno Mission, the use of many slang or abbreviation words is "apostate." The abbreviation of preparation day is one of these things. Hence, I have not used it! Other missionaries may find that strange, but if anything, this mission nets it's success largely from the sheer discipline and obedience the missionaries exert each day. President Clark has constantly commended us on these efforts, but also pleads with us often to not settle where we are but go even further!

   If you ever wonder why we're so focused in this mission that would be it. Exact Obedience brings miracles. We seek miracles. Speaking of miracles, as I briefly mentioned, those two Honduran youth that were at church yesterday were very desirous to progress towards baptism, we anticipate that the Selma Spanish branch will shortly be growing. Elder Ennis and I are seeking to do the best we can to follow suit. We need to shape some investigators into progressing investigators this week.

  I'm going to pause then come back."

  "The events of this week: May 8th to May 14th.  

Tuesday: Elder Ennis wakes up and informs me he didn't sleep. He threw up a lot at 1:00 AM. Stomach problems continued for him that morning, he called in, and was told to spend the day in bed. So as he slept, I spent my time studying and reading everything that sometimes gets neglected. I am well pleased to report I read a lot of "True to the Faith," the entirety of "Our Heritage," organized and updated the entire area book, read about 20 chapters of scripture, and a lot of the Bible Dictionary. I watched all 104 or something Bible Videos. I marked all our investigators on our map. Made some good food. Elder Ennis was incapacitated the majority of this time.

  I was rather surprised about how spiritual and powerful "Our Heritage" was. It particularly strengthened my faith in the principles of revelation and a living prophet in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. My testimony of Joseph Smith was also largely enhanced. I would recommend that book to really anyone that either 1) wants to learn more about "Mormons" or 2) Is a member seeking to strengthen their conversion.

Wednesday: Long day. Investigators were taught lessons, but several of them didn't seem to process the teachings too well. We are teaching an elderly gentleman named "G", and he really wants to learn, but he can hardly read and is sick a lot, so he never seems to keep commitments or learn anything for himself. It's hard to watch because he is really kept from the gospel because of his old age and physical limitations....
  This day we did find an interesting couple named Bella and Skip and taught them the Restoration. They thought it was possible it could be true and accepted to pray....

 Thursday: Went on exchange with "Selma Spanish" Elders. Worked most of the day in their area. Taught a man named Ralph before going to their area. He loved the Restoration until we got to the part about Joseph Smith getting the Priesthood authority--he misunderstood and thought we put Joseph Smith above God or Jesus Christ and didn't take the rest of the lesson too well. We explained to him that Joseph Smith was an important prophet, but could never be greater than God or Christ but he wasn't having it.

  During the exchange Elder Nielsen and I taught a group of 5 kids just about to light up some cigarettes of marijuana. They knew several Mormons and asked many questions and were sad when we told them we were out of time. Haha, the most interested people are found in the strangest of conditions.

Friday: Personal study was amazing. Read "Rise to Your Call" by President Henry B. Eyring and "The Greatest Among You" by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf. Changed my entire perception of my mission and greatly increased my desire to be much more humble. Anyone looking to serve God more effectively will get something out of that!  We taught a follow-up lesson with Bella and Skip. They didn't read or pray, so we had to read the intro to the Book of Mormon with them. We'll see what happens with them. They like the message, but aren't acting!

Saturday: Struck out all day until "the eleventh hour." (As Christ might say.) At 8:44 PM we ran into Maria and Alfredo, and they accepted our message and became new investigators.

Sunday: Mother's day call. We had to travel far to do the call, and returned to the area at 6:00 PM. All appointments crashed and we street contacted!  

  And that was Elder Schaff's week!

  I really enjoyed studying the doctrine of true discipleship this week. Suddenly, as we all strive to live our missionary purpose here in Selma the time is passing incredibly fast! That's the mission for you--it starts really long and then it goes by so fast that you can't believe it ended and want more. Two years is a short term of service to get acquainted with the God of this world."

--Elder Schaff

No comments:

Post a Comment