August 7th 2017
This week has been insane!
Let me give you a little run down of what has happened recently.
So on Tuesday i went in, dropped off my companion, and anxously waited 3 hours at the mission office to find out who my trainee would be.... long story short, His name is Elder Richardson! He is an amazing man, and we are getting along great! He kinda scared me at first though. He was very quiet, and i got really worried, everything came to mind, except for what it really was. It turns out... he was a new missionary! So he was just adjusting to his new surroundings! I was relieved.
In the mission field, there are of course ups and downs. Usually they last weeks, transfers, months, basically pretty long. But with all this responsibility, everyday is a rollercoaster! I get really happy, and really worried, and really excited, and really confused like every 5 minutes... Its great! Haha it was crazy being called the district trainer at first, and the days were just like i described, but im starting to get the hang of things now, so im more relaxed :)
Well... I thought i was getting the hang of things. I had district meeting last Friday, and i think it went really well! We did perfect time-wise and the district seemed to like it. That was the first relief is passing the first district meeting and having it go well. But... I found out next week President and his kids are coming to visit my district meeting. It's actually the 3 districts in our zone hes visiting, but one of them is mine. And ive never seen him at a district meeting before, until its me the one leading it haha. So im kinda nervous for that. But i have a good excuse if anything goes wrong, im a brand new district leader!
The work here has been kinda slow. This week we didnt find a lot of success but we were able to have a lot of things prepared for the future. We might be teaching a short message to 20-30 non members every thursday so thats exciting! We have been working though! Training is scary though! I want him to learn everything hes supposed to, but im always scared im gonna mess up. But its all good lol, the Lord will provide a way! He is a great man though, were getting along great, and hes opened up a lot.
About the driving... i have been doing a lot of it, and i think im getting too comfortable with it lol. It's really easy here since theres only deer and trees to run into, so there is nothing to worry about.
Overall with the whole week, it has been great, i was very nervous/excited/anxious in the begging of it all, but im starting to calm down, and i know the Lord will qualify me for this calling.
I hope yall have a fun time in Hawaii! And is Ash excited to drive? Is it weird for everyone else to think thats shes old enough to drive? Haha i hope yall have a great week!
August 14th 2017
This is so wierd! I'm old now!
This week was very eventful! So I will begin to tell you all the events. And good news! I have pictures! So lets start this:
Choking Story: Pretty big miracle. So apparently, my companion has a small throat. We were eating roast beef at a members house, and he got a peice stuck in his throat. It wasn’t enough to block his airways, but it made it so he couldn’t swallow. Even spit. So he had to step out, and had to keep spitting up, since it wouldn’t go down. Skip to when we get home, he was still spitting up, so we called the mission nurse. She said the nearest urgent care didn’t open till the next morning, so he was told he had to sleep and just drool all night. But since we are eagle scouts, we were devoted to find a way.
long story short, I was just like, hey, why don’t you drink vinegar? And we tried it. After a few seconds, a chunk of roast beef comes flying out of his mouth, then a couple seconds after, so does the rest of his food. Boom, miracle.
What is the most common food we are eating?
So you would think being in the South, we have deep fried barbeque everyday. In Albemarle, this is not the case. This past week, we have had eggrolls everyday, lunch and dinner... eggrolls. There are a ton of Hmong people here, who make amazing food. But they all cook the same thing. So we have tons of leftover eggrolls we've been eating, and then we go to dinner with a member to get more lol.
Barbara: In the last 2 days, i've driven 200 miles. Today was for zone activity and yesterday we went to the bottom of our area. We had a bible referral down there, nd we were able to contact her! She was super nice, and my companion extended his first baptismal invite! She said yes of coarse because Elder Richardson is that amazing. It was a great experience.
So thats all the main events. Last week was the hottest and most humid I’ve felt since I’ve been here. Really makes me appreciate having the car! The Bugs are also everywhere now! Its kinda cool but creepy, but I’m no longer scared of bee's anymore! The ones here are bigger than at home and everywhere, so I’ve become accustomed to them.
Other than that everything is going great! Going on to my 3rd district meeting tomorrow which is exciting, and I think Elder Richardson is turning out ok! I hope yall have fun at Hawaii!
I just saw the eclipse! Elder Richardson’s mom sent us some glasses so we could see it! It was amazing! But also kinda creepy haha. Were ya'll able to see it? It made for an amazing end to an amazing week.
Last Tuesday we had interviews with the mission president, which are always great! But he was kinda behind so it was a little rushed, but it was still great! Afterwards we went on exchanges. I went with the zone leaders, and they live in Charlotte, so i finally got to serve in the city! Highlight of that exchange, I was able to conduct my first baptismal interview!
That was a great experience to have! However, she spoke very little English, she spoke mainly French, so we had to have a translator in there with us. But good thing is she passed! She should be getting baptized this Thursday which is so exciting! While I was there, I got these ear candle things that you stick in your ear, light it up and it pulls the earwax out of your ear! It was pretty sweet and it worked pretty well!
This week I have really appreciated having full car! It was crazy hot and crazy humid! It really drains you, weve been exhausted and we still have the car! Yesterday, we went out and walked for 3 hours, about 6 miles, which was fun! Luckily, we did it from 6-9 so it was a bit cooler.... just a bit.
The work here in Albemarle is really starting to pick up. It seems like all of the members are having missionary experiences and calling us about different people! It really great to be a part of this ward while the member missionary work is increasing like this. I think its Elder Richardson, and his childlike faith! We've been getting along great, I'm glad to be his companion! It's been real fun while also working hard! I love you family and I hope Hawaii was great! And good luck in Sophomore year ash!
Welcome back from Hawaii! oh, and I did get the birthday card! Thank you! It was cool to hear from the family. It's weird to think that ash is already starting her sophomore year! Time is going by too fast.
These past few weeks with Elder Richardson have been so much fun. He is a great man, and I could tell he prepared well for his mission. We've been getting a lot of work done while also having lots of fun. Luckily the heat is dying down, it’s probably only temporary, but it's nice to have some cooler weather to walk in.
It's weird to think that I’ve been a district leader and a trainer for almost a month now. I've seen a lot of change and had a lot of growth. And it's also very humbling. I've been able to love for these people and serve them, and that’s a big blessing.
So, I’m kinda exhausted right now so the only big exciting thing i can think of right now that happened last week, was we got fleas! We had just given a lady a blessing and it turns out her dogs have fleas. As soon as we found them, we drove home, ran into the shower, and washed our clothes. Kinda put a little detour on the day, but luckily we didn’t have any appointments that night.
And that is a great question! I love the Book of Mormon! My advice for her, is to study something specifically out of it, or at least have a purpose behind it. If you don’t really know why, it will be harder to get a lot out of it. I have seen a lot of the power that comes from the Book of Mormon. One thing I learned that helped me understand why commitments are so important to extend to these investigators, especially concerning the Book of Mormon, is the %95 of these people’s conversion happens when we (the missionaries) aren’t there. Kinda shows how much work the spirit does.
But aside from investigators, reading from the Book of Mormon everyday has made a huge difference in my life. I'll just share a couple quotes that I know to be true:
"I implore each of us to prayerfully study and ponder the Book of Mormon each day. As we do so, we will be in a position to hear the voice of the Spirit, to resist temptation, to overcome doubt and fear, and to receive heaven’s help in our lives"
-President Thomas S. Monson
"Search the Book of Mormon and the words of the living prophets every day, every day, every day! It’s the key to spiritual survival and avoiding deception. Without it, we are spiritually lost."
-Elder Kevin W. Pearson
So i guess my commitment to you Ash, and to anyone else who wants these blessings, is to read the Book of Mormon everyday. Especially when you really don't want to, that is the most important time to do it. As you do that, then you will see these blessings fulfilled in your life. I love you all! And I hope that helped!
Excerpt from Elder Montandon’s email
Tuesday I went on exchange to Albemarle again but this time with Elder Beaulieu's Trainee and so I got to drive the brand new Malibus that they have and I will say that I do like the Chevy Malibus so we got there planned and took off on the bike for the rest of the day and we got to see and find alot of people and they are currently teaching a Jehovah Witness lady and it's pretty hilarious because her only concern is that God's name is Jehovah but she is a very smart lady she spoke Spanish but said English is her first language which I thought was weird because she is 100% but she is very smart. Then we go and visit a couple of people who had been interested before and so we stopped at this one guys house and he was getting ready to mow his lawn and we show up and start talking with him and share the Plan of Salvation with him and he breaks down crying so I gave him a hug and he was just crying because he just lost his mom and his brother and I shared a powerful scripture Alma 40:11 (check it out when you have the time) but it was amazing how powerful the scriptures really are. We ran into alot of people and I got some deep quotes that just blew my mind so I'll share those with you...
-"Once you know God you know who your enemy's are"
-"The easy part is falling down the hardest part is getting up"
-"Knowledge is Power, Power is Control"
Wednesday we returned from the exchange after an amazing district meeting by Elder Beaulieu