Elder Jose A. Teixeira of the Seventy spoke to us on Friday at a Zone Conference! It was such an amazing experience and I feel like I have learned so much! He talked about many things but the thing that stuck out to me most was about Mat. 25. This is where we see the Parable about Talents. I don't have much time to explain this parable so I recommend you read it if you aren't familiar with it. Elder Teixeira told us that the Lord doesn't expect quantity, he expects a difference. When are at the completion of your mission, will you be able to say that you made a difference? If so, then you have had a successful mission and the Lord will say,"Well done, thou good and faithful servant." I thought was so powerful and it even applies to everyday life. I hope to walk out of every situation, whether it's at home or talking to someone in the streets, and say that I have made a difference.
I experienced something new last night. I had my first door slammed in my face. We didn't even have the chance to say hello! It was so unexpected that I bursted out laughing. It was very unfortunate but if I didn't laugh then we night might have been ruined. Luckily it was all uphill from there! We have over a 100 less-actives listed in our are so we decided that was what we needed to work on last night. Unfortunately most of the people we went to see moved but much to our surprise nearly every person we met in their place wanted to learn more so we were able to set up loads of return appointments for this coming week! It was a miracle! The second we got home we got down on our knees and prayed. We are so grateful to have been put in their path and we could tell that these people are elect! Be persistant, make a difference!
So this week has been interesting. I pulled out my back again(woops). I did it when I crashed on my bike(woops). I was trying to zip up my pocket while riding(Stupid, Don't do that). I finally got it and looked up when a parked car magically appeared in front of me. I turned, slammed on my brakes, and had a pretty good fall. I was on the ground for a solid 15 minutes not wanting to move from the pain. Elder Hess thought that it was quite funny. He was laughing so hard that he had the hiccups for 30ish minutes. On the plus side I did miss the car! Yay for the car...
I forgot to tell you something that happened at the Zone Conference! At the beginning President Rasmussen calls all of the new missionaries to stand and be recognized. And as you already know Elder Teixeira of the Seventy was there. And just so you know he is the President over the Europe region. So President Rasmussen calls my name, I stand up, and expect him to call the next person. Instead, he pauses, thinks for a second, and says, "Elder Teixeira, you might be the President, but he's the Bos." I didn't have the guts to look at Elder Teixeira's face. But everyone was laughing so I'm guessing that he was too.
I had to go to Nottingham on Thursday and Friday. Thursday for a zone meeting and Friday to work with the zone leaders while Elder Hess was at a training meeting in Birmingham. I felt like a kid in a candy store while we were out finding people. They have a place that they call "the funnel". People are constantly flowing into this road and I love it! I was running from one person to another. It was great but at the same time we had a lot more nos than I'm used to. It was still a great experience though. At one point I just stopped and realized that Grandpa Stevenson could have walked down the same streets. It was an amazing feeling.
England is now in bloom! I love it! And so does Elder Hess!
Elder Parham and I came across a Mexican restaurant and they had Arizona licence plates in the window! We took that picture while we were on our way back from the train station. It was exciting to see.
I love this work. I love the Gospel. I love all of you. I hope that you have a great week!
So lately we have decided that we would create a Birthday card for all members and less-actives. A few days ago we took the bus 30 minutes north to deliver a card. It was a long trip and we weren't ever sure if this less-active still lived there. We finally arrived and no one answered the door. So we decided to knock on the neighbors door to ask them if he still lived there. We knocked and this lady answers the door and gets super excited. She tells us that her cousin was in the church and that she has been wanting to learn more for a long time. It was a miracle, we finally have someone to teach!
After that we had to take a different bus an hour south of where we were to get to another less-active for his birthday. We get off the bus and start walking by a playground with around 40 kids running around, riding scooters, and playing tag. Out of no where an Ice Cream truck comes around the corner and there is total chaos! The music is blast and the driver can tell that he hit the jackpot. Kids were waving their money, frantically looking/yelling for parents, and sprinting for the truck. All of this happened withing 30 seconds. The best part though was the reaction of this little girl. She saw the truck, dropped her scooter, took two steps, and started to yell "ICE CREAM! ICCCCEEEE CRRRREEEEAAAMMM!!!!!" She yelled that over and over again. Each time she would lift her arm and throw them down while going into the squatting position. Definitely a funny sight.
So after that we arrived at the less-actives house. And again we had no clue if he lived there or not. We knocked and some guy answered. We asked him if Robert lived there. He said no. We had an awkward moment of silence and then Elder Hess says, "We came to deliver this Birthday card to him. It wouldn't happen to your Birthday would it?" It was his Birthday! I was in shock for the next 20 minutes.
Yesterday was an amazing day for us. We had a lesson! It was our first lesson in over a week. I honestly felt incredibly nervous. It almost felt as if I forgot how to teach. Before walking in we said a prayer and that made all of the difference. We walked into his home and had the best lesson. The Spirit was so strong. That was by far the most powerful lesson that I have had while out here. His name is Dapo(Duh-poh) and he is from Nigeria! He is a legend!
I don't have a lot of time but I hope that you all have a wonderful week! Love you!
The girl screaming was the highlight of my week.
General Conference was so amazing! We didn't have it at our chapel so we had to catch a ride to Nottingham to watch it at the Stake Centre. Because of the time difference we had to do it differently and unfortunately we had to miss the last session. I was able to see Saturday Morning's session on Saturday night, Priesthood Session Saturday morning, Saturday Night session on Sunday afternoon, and Sunday morning session on Sunday night. It was an all day event and I loved every minute!
Here are a few things that I liked:
-We are a Temple attending, not a Temple building people.
-Bear your crosses with love and gratitude
-Service prepares us to love what The Lord loves
-These are the days to stand strong, to build faith, and to become a Disciple of Jesus Christ
-take the short and long view when making choices
-The real tests of courage are quieter,like doing what's right when no one is around
-Not all acts of courage bring great result, but they do bring peace of mind
-Choose Courage, not compromise
-gratitude leads to ALL Christlike attributes
-Be Consistant, Persistant, and Follow-up.
He always has a plan, to safely get me home again
-Don't wait, Act! We have eternity to think.
-I pray because I can't help myself
The miracle of the Atonement can make up for flaws in our perfomance
-Show love, Avoid regrets
In between sessions Elder Hess and I had the opportunity to teach a man named Mansoor.He is from Egypt and we met him on the street and gave him our number ages ago. He called because he really wanted to go to church. We told him that it was differnetly this week and that if he wanted to go we could find a ride for him. We told him that it would be an all day event and he gladly accepted! He nearly begged us! It was so awesome. He showed up with some members and was able to listen to two sessions. In between we taught him about the Restoration and explained in a lot more detail about General Conference. He really enjoyed it and he told us that he can't wait to meet with us again! that was this weeks miracle. I hope that all of you are seeing miracles in your life. I know that the Savior lives and that He is there to comfort you in times of need. He can bless your lives, so let Him!
What a week! My entire week was made great by one lesson. Her name was Linda and we taught her with Brother and Sister Tulip at the Church. She is a sigle mother of 3 kids and has been wanting to find a church where she feels welcome and uplifted. The Spirit was so strong during the lesson and you could just tell by the look on her face that she felt it. At one point we asked her how she felt and replied, "Light, I feel peace." Something else happened as well. Normally she reads the Bible by opening to a random page and reading the first verse that she sees. Well that's the first thing that she did when we gave her a Book of Mormon and she opened up and read 3 Nephi 19:13. That scripture talks about being Baptized and receiving the Holy Ghost. She instantly gasps and starts to cry. It was so powerful. Afterwards she grabed my hand and with her mother like strength pulled me into a hug. It was so awkward...My eyes went wide and I started to panic. haha I told Elder Hess after and he just laughed and said, "That won't be the last and it's awkward everytime." That was the amazing lesson for this week.
Lately I have been trying to read the entire Bible. The Old Testament is confusing but I love it so much! I have learned so much since I have started and here is a scripture that stuck out to me:
2 And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lordthy God led theethese forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee,to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commanments, or no.
3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy father know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord doth man live.
4 Thy raiment waxed not old upon thee, neither did thy foot swell, these forty years.
5 Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the Lord thy God chasteneth thee.
6 Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy god, to walk in his ways, and to fear him.
I want everyone to look up the Chris Williams Mormon Message. I feel like that goes with this scripture. I want to hear what people think about it so email me with your response!
I have tons of pictures to send to you but the library is updating all of thier systems so we are unable to plug in our cameras and upload them.
I love all of you and hope that you have a wonderful Easter! Remember what it is all about!
Sorry that I'm sending this so late in the day. Because of Easter we had to go to a member's home.
We had transfers and Elder Hess was transferred to Woodsutton. I received the new district leader. His name is Elder Washington and he is from South Jordan, Utah. He has been out 16 months and loves it. He is a great missionary and I have already learned quite a bit from him.