Monday, February 10, 2014

A Valentine

So, interestingly enough, I have a valentine for Valentine's day. He's very sweet and only six years old. He's the son of a member in the ward who's just becoming active again. His cousin is smitten with Sister Rowley. It's pretty funny. Every time we're around them they always do something to get our attention, and then as soon as we look at them they either hide behind their moms or run away screaming. They're pretty entertaining. 

It was a super busy week. We had a zone meeting on Tuesday, down in Simpsonville. There's a Target down there, so I was able to use the gift card Charles and Kathie gave me for Christmas and get myself some cute Sunday shoes; I'll send a picture next week. We also went on exchanges that day. I stayed in our area and Sister Rowley left. It was good practice, since transfers are next week and Sister Rowley is probably going to be leaving, even though I may have to drag her to transfers kicking and screaming; she really doesn't want to leave, and I don't really want her to leave either. We've had some good times, and some crazy times, and we've learned to teach really well together, and I'm going to miss her. 

We couldn't get a hold of an investigator for about three days this week, which really scared us, but we finally managed to see her on Friday and she's doing great, she had just been busy. We had planned to have her baptism this Saturday, and we talked about that with her, but after we left we really didn't feel good about it. And then we realized that there's a ward temple trip that day, so no one is going to be around. We're not sure if she's completely living the word of wisdom yet, so we're just going to see where she's at and then set a new date. I feel really bad doing this to her again; this is the fourth time we've moved her baptism. It's hard with her, because she has the desire to be baptized, but she doesn't quite have the understanding or the commitment to the commandments. But she'll get there. I can't believe how far she's come in the past month. I thought she was never going to come to church, but she's been great about coming. Although, this week she got confused and showed up at 1 instead of 9, so she went to the Spanish branch by accident. Luckily our elders were still at the church and told her it was the Spanish branch and our ward met earlier. I think stake conference a couple weeks ago threw her off, but we called her last night and got everything cleared up. Oh the funny things that happen on a mission :)

We had a great lesson last night with that family we met last Sunday. We taught them about the Restoration. They're not really sure about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon yet, but they're willing to read and think about it. Their youngest daughter said that she wanted to be the first one to finish the Book of Mormon, she was really excited about it. They're just such an amazing family, and we had a really good lesson with them. At one point the dad asked me, "If you weren't missionaries, if we were just some extended family that had come over for Christmas dinner and we were talking about religion, what would you tell us is the reason we should join your Church? What is it that makes it so much better than what we've got?" It was an interesting question, and it almost made me cry when I answered it, because I do have family members that could ask that question. But what I said to him was that the priesthood is what makes the difference. In our church, we have men that have the authority to act in God's name, to perform baptisms, to give blessings of healing and comfort, and to seal our families together forever. That's the difference, because we believe just about the same things they believe. But the priesthood authority is found only in our church and with that comes the power and direction of God, and that makes all the difference. Oh, I hope that family will be willing to soften their hearts and recognize the truth of what we share, because they're so amazing, and they need those blessings of the priesthood. 

We've been warned that a big ice storm is supposed to hit tomorrow and Wednesday, so we're praying that it's not too bad, or we may end up stuck in our apartment again, which wouldn't be good because we've got lots to do this week, lots of people to teach. The weather here is so weird. One day it will be warm enough we don't even need our coats and the next day it will feel like we're in Antarctica. 

I love you all, thank you for your prayers, we need them. I can't believe it's been three months since I got to Easley. I didn't think any place could be as good as Moncks Corner, but I love it here too, in a different way. I'm just so grateful to be a missionary. There's nothing I'd rather be doing. I'm very happy. 

P.S. As you can tell from the picture, baking cookies on a rainy day just doesn't work here. At least the dough tasted good! 

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