Monday, July 14, 2014

Children of God

My New Bike
My goal of eating a Georgia peach is about to happen. Thanks Trader Joe's
Florida Creatures
Gainesville Stake Pioneer Picnic
What happens when the Elders use your ipad for a mirror while applying mustaches.
Watermelon Eating Contest
Where are your ancestors from?

Can I just say I LOVE being in a ward with children!  Holy cow!  I didn't realize how much I missed being with those Celestial Beings!  I got a lot of opportunities to do things with kids this week (well as much as you can get being a missionary!)
This week we were trying to visit a potential investigator we found while riding our bikes last week.  She didn't answer so we started knocking the doors around her.  We knocked three doors and the first two only spoke Spanish.  Sister Stitt knew just enough to explain who we were and what we were doing.  One invited us to come back, and the other invited us in.  We found out she had a Book of Mormon!  We are sending the Spanish Elders over there for sure!  There are a TON of Spanish speakers in that complex for some reason.  The third door was a super nice woman who spoke Spanish and English, I believe she was Cuban.  She wasn't interested in our message, but wanted to know more about what we do.  She was very impressed.  Before we left we asked to leave her with a prayer.  She accepted then said she wanted to leave us with one also.  In her church you stand and raise your hands when you pray (apparently they take the Bible very literally.)  It was almost more of a chant compared to how we pray, but it was very sweet.  She told us to stop by any time we wanted.

I also got an investigator on Facebook!  I have been praying to find someone to teach online!  I got a friend request from a man named Suleman and decided to start messaging him.  It turns out he lives in Pakistan.  He has talked to other missionaries and wants to be baptized, but he does not have access to the church, and the Book of Mormon has not been translated into Punjabi.  We'll keep sharing lessons with him, and praying for him to be able to live the gospel as he desires. 

Thursday we had dinner with Michael and Mallory Gooch, and my bike from CTRbikes was shipped to their home that day so we biked over early to put my bike together.  It worked out perfectly!  The bike comes mostly assembled.  I just had to add pedals, handlebars, and lights.  Unfortunately it wasn't as easy as I had hoped.  I was able to get it together except for the pedals, but we were running late for an appointment with a less active member, Sister Trench.  Gratefully Sister Gooch offered to drive us to the lesson and stay for it.  She needed to bring her daughter, Allison, though.  Allison is ADORABLE!!!  (and not just because of her name)  She is almost 1 year old and she is just so darn cute!  The lesson went so well!  Granted, Allison was a little distracting, but that is so ok!  She kept coming to me and reaching for me to pick her up!  But that's against missionary rules... so sorry Allison!  On the way home Allison was getting grumpy.  She was tired, and she had a cold, and it was past her bed time, and she was NOT ready to get back in the car.  She screamed and screamed.  We sang songs, I was in the back seat by her so I read her stories, but no go.  After a few minutes of crying so hard she threw up!  It's a good thing Heavenly Father helps us with weaknesses, because one of mine happens to be a weak stomach.  We pulled over for Sister Gooch to take care of poor Allison and once she calmed down again we headed out again.  The only thing that calmed her down was for Sister Gooch and Sister Stitt to sing songs from Shrek the musical.  I've never seen that, but it did wonders for Allison.  We made it to the Gooch home and Sister Stitt and I biked like mad women to get home on time... without lights on our bikes.  It was an adventure!  I had to leave my new bike with the Goochs for the night since there wasn't time to put pedals on.  We had the car on Friday so we drove to the Gooch home and picked up my bike.  I have since put the pedals on and am excited to take it out! 

Saturday the Gainesville had a HUGE stake Pioneer Picnic to celebrate church and Florida Pioneers.  There was a pioneer town set up in the gym with different shops, a church, a jail... and square dancing!  There were pioneer games and good food!  They took a huge picture of everyone who was there even!  Sister Stitt and I were in charge of the room where children (or adults) could make bonnets or get a neckerchief and a fake mustache.  It was super fun!  The kids especially got so excited and I loved being able to help them! 

Saturday evening Sister Moffett picked us up for dinner and a lesson.  Sister Moffett is amazing!  She went to Ireland for a study abroad program and ended up meeting her husband in a ward there!  They got married, but soon her visa was going to expire so what do they do but move to China together.  Eventually she needed to come back to America and his papers still haven't gone through.  But he should be able to come in the next couple weeks or so!  We are so excited to meet him!!!  I can't imagine how hard that would be to have your husband in another country.  About a month ago Sister Moffett started talking to a 19 year old man on a bus.  His name is Caleb.  The Sisters started teaching him and he was pretty much Bible bashing them all over.  He knows his Bible!  He is studying for a Christian ministry.  Finally Sister Stockett (who was here before me) told him they would only teach him if he was willing to listen.  Then I was transferred here and he has been very receptive.  He has been studying and praying, and on Saturday we set a baptismal date with him for August 9th!!!  He still has to gain a testimony, but he has a date to work toward which is very important!  Also, because I followed my prompting to start reading the Bible again I was able to help answer one of Caleb's questions!  Thank you Heavenly Father for preparing us!

Sunday Sister Stitt and I taught primary sharing time!  So, so, so fun!  I was kind of nervous to be honest--it's been a while since I've taught children.  We used a ball from the nursery and taped numbers all over it.  Then I threw the ball to the kids and whatever number their hand was covering connected to a question about baptism.  Then we looked up the answer in the scriptures.  The junior primary was pretty wild and the Senior Primary was pretty dead quiet, but it was fun.

It was a good week.  The work is still going slow, but it is going to pick up.  I know there are great things in store for the Gainesville 3rd ward! 

P.S. Elders and Sisters can no longer live in the same apartment complex so we are looking for a new apartment to move into.  I'll keep ya'll updated for an address change!  Pray we can find an apartment with a good location and that isn't too expensive!  Most of the nice ones are a long ways from our area.  Unfortunately the ones in our area are pretty sketchy.  Even the one we thought was the nicest had policeman and firemen outside of it.  Some of them had on those protective uniforms... they must have found a drug house or something... fun stuff!  Don't worry though, we'll find a safer one!  :)