Monday, February 17, 2014

New companion, same area, epic 3 days--week 7 in Arkansas

A lot happened this week out here in arkansas. The first big event of the week was transfers on wednesday. elder Nielson is my new companion. He is from Rexburg Idaho and loves adventure sports, mountain biking, BMX, etc. He has been in oxford mississippi for his whole mission so far and has been out for a total of 7 months. He was actually my last companions companion in the MTC. luckily hes ok with getting up at 6 everyday to workout so I still get a pretty good run in everyday, but im getting really sick of the treadmill, 2 straight months of only running on a treadmill. we have worked really hard these last few days and have had a lot of success with a great story to go with it. On thursday we focused the entire day to finding new people and setting appointments with them to come back and teach lessons. I believe we found 11 new investigators that day and taught 9 quick lessons. which is more lessons and investigators I have ever had in a day. Friday started out really slow, no one was answering there door and several of our appointments with our new investigators had fallen through already. it was dinner time and we had two more appointments set up for that night one with a old lady named Zettie and another with Erika, both were single ladies and we werent aloud to teach them in there homes without a ward member with us. we quickly called several of our most reliable ward members to come out with us, but with it being valentines day everyone had other plans. we decided that we would probably be able to teach zettie from on the porch but we probably wouldnt be able to teach erika on the porch through the door because she has a baby that cant be in the cold for very long. We got to zetties appartment and began teaching her about the restoration and gave her a book of mormon. she said that she had read part of it before but that she had always thought that it was taking away from the bible instead of adding to it. (she loves the bible, she has 24 copies of it) we invited her to be baptized on the 1st of march and she accepted. after we left me and elder nielson were both really excited and we were getting out our phone to text the baptism date to some of the other missionaries when brother hiatt called. I had never met brother hiatt before and I didnt even know who he was. he explained to us that his whole family was out of town except for him and so he didnt have any plans for valentines and that he had this feeling that he should call us and see if we needed any help. since he had offered to go we would be able to teach erika in her home and not have to skip the appointment. When we got to erikas house we expected we would be teaching just her but once we went inside her 4 kids and her mom were all there waiting to hear our message. we started teaching, which at first was very difficult since her mom (joann) would interrupt us constantly with scriptures from the bible making it very hard to stay on track. but eventually she went quiet and was just listening, until after we taught her about the first vision and then she started to tell us about a prayer she had said earlier that day about how she wanted guidance in her life and a new path to take. we then invited both her and erika to be baptized on the 1st of march and they both accepted. I know that brother hiatt was inspired to call us and offer us help that night so that we could visit erika and joann and help them come unto christ. The next day we re committed Phillip to baptism for the first of march as well. sunday we taught another new investigator we found name Aaron. he is kinda crazy but is a great guy he has 4 kids, one of which he named Phat king.... I almost started laughing when he was telling us there names. he loves scriptures as well, he had a rough life of being in and out of prison a few years back but changed his life around by going to a church down the street. we gave him a book of mormon the day we met him and he was really excited, he reads it to his kids everyday even though they are all 7 or younger and probably dont understand what he is reading. after a long lesson with him with lots of random comments from him about something he read in the book of mormon, which is good i guess but made it hard to stay on track, we invited him to be baptized on the 8th of marchand he accepted. with the help of the lord we were able to set 5 baptism dates in 3 days. we were really blessed to have so much success in one week. the whole last transfer we only set 3 dates and two of them fell through. in those three days we also found 15 new investigators and taught 15 other lessons along with 8 member lessons. we were really blessed to have that much success in those three days. ive never taught that many lessons in an entire week.
Love, elder johnson

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