Dear Family and Friends,
To start off, a notice to the missionaries I am sending this to, I am
not being disobedient by emailing today, I promise. As technology
specialists, our transfer week P-Day is on Monday instead of Wednesday
because we have lots of pre-transfer tasks to take care of Wednesday.
A P-Day would be impossible otherwise. The change has President
Last Monday, we helped the Brower's move. Elder and Sister Brower are
missionaries that have been serving in the mission office with us.
Elder Brower drove the U-Haul from Ohio to Idaho last Monday, and
Sister Brower is leaving today. They have been really awesome to work
with and we will miss them. They also helped out with a lot of the
transfer day tasks, so I am not sure how everything will operate when
Thursday comes around. If I had to guess, Elder Low and I will
probably be extra busy that day.
In District Meeting, Elder Gardner led us in a roleplay where one
companion closes his eyes while the other plugs their ears (but can
still hear their companion.) The companion who could hear but not see
would be listening for verbal cues of what the investigator is
understanding. The other companion, who could see but not hear, would
be looking for understanding through paying attention to the
investigator's body language. I learned that I have room to grow when
it comes to interpreting body language. Usually I am focused more on
their words because I have no idea what their body language means, but
I would like to learn so I can teach more to their needs.
Going into Mini Zone Conference I had the question "How can I better
help those around me feel of God's love?" During the roleplays, I saw
how asking questions that help investigators to ponder their
relationship with God helps them see that He really is there. The more
I seek to follow the spirit on asking questions that will help
investigators find God, the more they will be able to see His hand in
In ward council the previous week, someone mentioned teaching Brother
Rinehart about patriarchal blessings. We had a lesson with him this
week to help him understand how receiving one can help give us more
guidance in life. We found out during the lesson that his home teacher
had also talked to him on the same subject recently. We taught using
excerpts from the talk "Your Patriarchal Blessing: A Liahona of
Light." What I learned during preparation for this lesson helped me to
have a greater appreciation for my own patriarchal blessing as well.
During service at the Smoky Row Food Pantry this week, we were able to
have a conversation with Billy and a couple other volunteers about
what we do as missionaries. They were really fascinated by the
lifestyle we live and the devotion we have to the work. They thought a
couple of the rules we have are overly strict, but they admired that
we have a standard we choose to live by.
Saturday, we were able to have a lesson with Jon. We brought Chris
with us who is preparing to serve a mission in Milan, Italy. The
lesson focused on how to recognize the spirit. Jon still isn't quite
understanding what we are teaching, but I can tell that the spirit was
there in that lesson and he felt something. Even though he may not
recognize that the spirit is working on him, he sees our message and
our visits as good. I feel that having Chris in the lesson was great
for Jon. He bore his testimony of the comfort that the spirit can
bring when we experience the loss of a loved one. Our main struggle
with Jon has been helping him see the necessity of coming to church.
He views meeting in small groups, like when we visit, as being church
and feels coming to church isn't as productive for him since he is
just listening to someone talk. We plan to do a church tour with him
to at least get him in the building so that he can feel the spirit
We also met with Aaron and Shirley, who we met when we tracted into
them a couple weeks ago. We found a great opportunity to help serve
them and we plan on incorporating a lesson into that visit on Tuesday.
I feel very optimistic about this family and the potential they have
as investigators. The ward council has also been very supportive in
helping us with their needs.
In Weekly planning, we tried switching up how we planned to help Elder
low be more engaged. I feel like there was some improvement in how
involved Elder Low was in planning. There is still room for us to grow
in unity; I can't expect perfection on the first time around trying
this. I know I may complain from time to time how rocky our
relationship has been, but this has been the companionship where I
have grown the most and have had to be the most diligent, patient, and
loving. Humbly submitting to the Lord's will is difficult, but I can
see that things could be worse, and these experiences are leading me
to become more like my Savior.
In Sacrament meeting yesterday, Elder Low gave a talk, as well as
President and Sister Daines. Elder Low bore his testimony on the
sacrament and how it should truly be a time for us to reflect on the
savior and the sacrifice he made for us. He related the bread to
repentance: just like the bread takes time to chew, repentance can
take time. The water washes away the bread and the pain of sin can be
washed away as fast as we apply the atoning blood of Christ.
Sister Daines spoke on goal setting and potential. She said something
that really stuck out to me. She said that even the Savior took time
during the creation of the world to not only return and report, but to
pause and reflect on the good that has come from their efforts. I know
in my life, I don't always take the time to reflect on the good that I
have accomplished and it is easy to see the goals and expectations
that we don't live up to instead of the ones we do meet or exceed.
Satan tries to discourage us by getting us to see what we are not,
rather than what we are. Don't forget that as a son or daughter of God
your potential is infinite and your worth is great, so go about doing
President Daines gave a talk on the doctrine of Christ. Most of his
talk seemed to be focused on enduring to the end. He posed the
question: if the gospel of Jesus Christ is so simple, then why is it
sometimes so hard to live it? The answer is that Satan knows how easy
it is. He doesn't have to get us to not believe. All he has to do is
distract us enough that we wander off the path of progress. Satan
wants to get us into a state of complacency where we feel we have
enough. He wants us to forget that God has us on a path, not a bus
stop, leading to the celestial kingdom. It will take continual effort,
like walking down a path, to get to our destination.
Elder Aaron King
Ohio Columbus Mission