I called one of the Assistants this morning for something and the first thing he says to me is "IT'S STORCHIN' OUT HERE!" hahahahah. True story! There is a heat advisory in affect from yesterday to Thursday... the car is reading 105* and that does not include the humidity factor. So... it's really hot here. And unfortunately because of it, no one is outside to talk to us! Everyone is out of town or working in AC buildings or... I don't know. However, we met the coolest 13 year old boys last week! Not exactly what you were expecting, eh?
So, these boys are awesome. Last Sunday (week and a day ago) we met this 17 year old boy on the street. He was working on his truck so we taught a lesson and he said we could come back. Sweet. Went back last Thursday and found these two other boys in his house, and they stayed. They didn't just stay, one said to the other, "Go grab our bibles!" and so they did. Then, one of them offered the opening prayer and in that sad prayer he said, "please bless that my mom will go to church with me". So... they're awesome. We have permission to teach them and everything. Have a love for Christ and think we're all just the coolest things ever. We're missionaries... of course we are! We then ran into them at Wal-Mart and continued to build a relationship. We'll see them again on Thursday. Woot!
Before this excessive heat came into play we were out tracting on foot and went into the local Casey's (gas station) for some water. One of the women that work there came up to us and starting talking to us like we were long lost friends. Apparently Sister Browning and her companion back then worked with this family a while back and they just love the missionaries. We're not sure how receptive the husband is after meeting with them the other day, but needless to say, the Lord is blessing us despite the heat.
Today we are going into Independence with a member, her non-member daughter-in-law and her two girls, and then will meet her non-member husband and non-member son for a late lunch. So, we're giving up a little of P-day, but look at this awesome family we get to go spend time with and fellowship! They are just so nice and caring, too. it's pretty cool. This member is a convert as is her daughter. Her daughter is on a mission in Santiago Chili right now. They are just so cool!! I really like this family... we're going to be friends forever.
I apologize for not writing more last week, too. I planned my time poorly and then got kicked off. Didn't expect that! I don't really remember much of what I was going to write... haha. A couple weeks ago I talked about the mosquitoes on steroids. I found out from a member that I had a couple dozen chigger bites on me... ICK. I invested in Chiggerex and it's the best thing ever! I took a picture of my legs when they were looking like a buffet table. haha. Life of a missionary... seriously. I do remember saying something about passion. So, I'll expound on that. (illegal segway?)
The word "passion" came from Christian scholars. It means "suffer". It must be pure and willing. However, when we are passionate about something is generally relates to being on a path. "Path-" is a suffix meaning "suffering from". Think of doctors called pathologists and what they study. Also, think of the word "sacrifice". "Sacra" means "sacred" in latin, and "fice" means "perform". Passion is a sacred suffering. And suffering is life defining; a very sacred event. If we are willing to suffer a little for a cause, we become a victor. When we know what we are willing to pay a price for, we find our mission in life. I guess what I took from all of this was this: be willing to suffer for what you love. No matter who or what you love, think if you are passionate about it. Blessings come to us that are passionate about righteous things. Christ suffered an incomprehensible amount. Who are we to say we don't need to suffer a little to understand?
I also had many, many prayers answered this week. I was thinking about expectations. Is it good to have expectations? yes. Expectations are spiritually, or divinely, driven. Do not have restrictions on yourself. You will fall but we just get right back up. The Atonement is a gift to every one of us. It is up to us to accept it. Chelsie wrote me and said this and I just LOVE it. She taught me this: You were placed in this life because you're the only one strong enough to live it. She's so profound... I'm glad to call her my friend.
Sister Hawkes wrote me.... I'm so blissful right now. She's having amazing wonderful spiritual experiences in the MTC right now and will go into the field on Wednesday. She's going to be doing wonderful, wonderful things.
Okay, and one funny thought before I close this. Every Friday is district meeting, right? Well, Sister Larson had this idea to buy bandanas, water guns, and aviator glasses and bombard the Elders after the meeting. We took pictures in preparation. However, the spirit restrained us. So... we're going to do it next Monday as a part of our Zone P-day instead. August 4th is transfers again! Already! Where is my mission going?!?! Regardless... I'm sending pictures of our epic war pictures. You can grow and still be a kid at heart on a mission... ;)
Thank you everyone for your updates and support through letters, prayers, and deeds. I'm so grateful to each and every one of you and I can feel you right here with me! Like I've said before, I have the biggest, and BEST, family supporting me and my own family back home. Thank you from the depths of my heart.
I know this gospel is true. As I read through the Book of Mormon and see how God has affected the lives of those people through His son, Jesus Christ, and the miracles and growth in them, I can't help but have that desire grow deep within me. I think of Mosiah 28:3 often. There is so much to do and so many people who need to know about this! This isn't just another church or another religion. This is God reaching out to us and inviting us to find everlasting happiness. Who could deny such a blessing? I know the work I am doing is real. The Lord walks beside us everyday and we are growing. Prayer is real. Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers. He's there just to listen if we need someone to, and he's here, waiting, to bless us. I exhort you to turn to the Lord. Ask the missionaries what they have to share, and ask God yourself if it's true. You will receive an answer. I know this to be true. And I share this with you in the holy and sacred name of our Lord, even Jesus Christ. Amen.
Shall we not go on in so great a cause?