Wow! Can you believe I've been in Ohio for over 30 days now? Goodness! Where does time go?
This week was full of good, and had it's sad moments, too. I went on exchanges with some different missionaries and that reeeeeally made me even more grateful for my companion! The Elder I was on exchange with that day was SO negative about nearly every aspect of missionary work! It made my heart really sad! He's been out for over 20 months, and complained and gossipped ALL day. :( BUT, while I was with him, we taught a really cool lady named Betsy for THREE AND A HALF HOURS! Yippee! It was a looooong visit, but she had lots of great questions about the Word of Wisdom, Law of Chastity, and tithing. It was a great discussion! Anyways, that experience made me grateful for my companion who is positive about missionary work, despite his little quirks :)
One of our investigators, has decided to stop investigating the Church. :( He had been doing so well and had been on and off date for baptism, but feels like he has a "different" calling in life. It's heartbreaking to see someone you care about and have worked with for so long choose to give something up that would make their lives infinitely more meaningful. We also got a call from our other progressing investigator, that she thinks she's "too old" to make a change like this.... She's 55..... Thankfully, we're meeting with her and her 12 year old son, tomorrow, and we're really hoping and praying hard that she and her son will stay on track for baptism.
We've been having a hard time finding new people to teach this week. We'll walk around for hours at a time through neighborhoods, looking for someone who will hear us out. We've been mostly unsuccessful, but I have faith that we WILL find someone soon! There's no such thing as a dry area, just dry missionaries!
Some highlights from the week:
- After trying to find new people all day, we tried one last street and found a 91 year old woman and talked to her for about 30 minutes! We'll be going back this week to talk to her :)
- That same day, we were riding back home at night on the sidewalk around a runner, who we "scared the *poop* out of" who was actually delighted to see us! We gave her a super condensed Restoration lesson as we rode next to her and she jogged, gave her our number, and are hoping that she calls! She kept saying "Amen!" after everything we were telling her and she told us how much she loves God and Christ, so... if anything a seed was planted and it brightened our day.
- Yesterday, we had a very special mission-wide meeting in Cincinnati. Dallin H. Oaks was in the area re-organizing a stake, and agreed to speak to the missionaries only for an hour! It was amazing! I SHOOK HIS HAND AND HE LOOKED ME IN THE EYE AND SAID I LOOKED SHARP! My life was made! It was such a powerful experience being just three rows away from an apostle of God. Probably a once in a lifetime experience for me. It was revitalizing being with our whole mission, united as one, with an apostle talking just to US. So special!
I know that Heavenly Father is a loving God who KNOWS what each and every one of us is going through. I know that through the enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can not only overcome sin, any feeling of doubt, loneliness, or despair. The Restored Gospel is so beautiful!
I love you all! Know that you're in my thoughts and prayers ALWAYS.
Com MUITO amor,
Elder Jason Allred