Saturday, May 9, 2015

Memorial City, Week 29: April 6, 2015 - April 12, 2015

Monday, April 13, 2015

Had a pretty fun week! A lot of things happened actually. Some highlights being that we went to the temple this Tuesday! It was so fun. We did initiatory and endowment! It was awesome to be able to do initiatory again, been since home. We went as all the elders in the zone. It’s so fun going with people you know and having that bond you wont get anywhere else.

We also did two exchanges this week, so Elder Christensen was out of the area on Wednesday and Saturday. I got to host one of the new zone leaders on the first one. We clicked a ton. I like him. Then my district leader came to my area for the second exchange. They went well and I think they helped Elder Christensen.

We also got a new investigator out of our basketball night! It was amazing because last week one of my favorite kids that comes all the time said that he wanted to be baptized. So we talked to him and found out he lives close and we can start teaching him! He agreed to have us come over and we actually had a first lesson with him, went really well. He accepted to be baptized but said he wants to get his life in order first, feels like he needs to start hanging out with better friends, making better choices and just becoming more spiritual. But, that’s great because it shows he understands the importance of baptism. We also were thinking that those concerns would go away as he starts having more lessons and coming to church. He'll see that you don’t need to be perfect for baptism and he'll naturally stay away from the things that make him feel less spiritual.

Another crazy thing.. the Mayberry family got kicked out of their apartment and had to move unexpectedly. So that was quite disappointing. But we will track down the missionaries that work where they live now and go with them and have a nice introduction and trade off. Hopefully they get baptized over there and I get word and I’ll go over and be there for it.

We haven’t been able to meet with any other investigators this week. Marjorie is the only one eligible for baptism this month. The others needed to come to church this week to make their date but they weren’t able to. But it was awesome because two less active sisters we visited right before conference came to church this week! it just shows, a little reminder can bring about change and then people realize what they were missing and want it back. They hadn’t been to church in a long time.

The bike is working great. I just need to wash it off. It’s super dirty and has mud build up all over. I’m gonna ask some people from the ward about a hose, it’s hard to find them out here. But, those that have a house should let us use them. Getting tons of miles on the saddle, we also have a car too. Last night there was a fireside where they were teaching more about family history at the church and it was way fun because Elder Christensen and I biked to it. It was looking rainy and we thought we could beat the rain there. We got just past half way and then it started pouring. We were soaked as we walked in. Then we got all cold because of the a/c.  Elder Christensen is still growing. He is teaching a little bit more and he’s loving it out here. We get along great. I think one of us is getting transferred though. We'll see in a few weeks.

Love you,
Elder Janz

Friday, May 8, 2015

Memorial City, Week 28: March 30, 2015 - April 5, 2015

Monday, April 6, 2015

Had a solid, solid week. Much better than last week. Just shows... life isn’t fair, but when things are good, the Lord is blessing us so things are more than fair. Conference was just amazing. Much anticipated for me. I was like a kid about to get a new toy on Saturday morning when it started up …so stoked. We watched conference at the church chapel. We also went over to some wardies and watched the Saturday afternoon session and had yummy dinner. We also got fed last night too. So we liked that a lot.  Even with lots of time devoted to watching conference, we got a lot done. Feels good to go from a rough week, last week, to a hard working, successful and even really spiritual week this week. Makes me happy. I even cried as the MoTab sang the last song at conference because I was just so grateful for everything i have  ...great parents and investigators, awesome prophet and church leaders, cool companion!  And, I’ve been out on my mission for a while and have learned a thing or two.

Investigators are definitely moving forward. We saw the Mayberrys this Tuesday. Had a good lesson with them and invited them to conference. They came to the Sunday morning session. We got nervous because they said they would come and then conference started and no sign of them. We were just waiting by the door. They eventually came like 15 mins in. Still got to see the first talk by Pres Monson. It was way funny. They started clapping after one of the songs the MoTab sang. It was way embarrassing, but no one did anything. I just kind of gave them 'the look'. Also, anytime they heard something really powerful, they would say ‘amen’ aloud. They’re just interesting women.

We also got to see Marjorie this week. That was a miracle. She’s been so flaky. We had a lesson at the church right before basketball night and had a member my age come with us to teach her and play ball. He’s taught her before and she really likes him. The lesson went great. We found out her concern, She has a friend destroying her faith, might be her mom, just didn’t specify, and she’s just been so busy. So, she broke down and we didn’t teach the whole lesson. We just comforted her and shared scripture and testified of things that helped her out. Sometimes you just gotta teach them, and not the lesson. We actually invited her to be baptized again and explained this is maybe what she needs to be able to strengthen her faith and trust God more. She accepted for the 18th. We'll see. So, that’s the family and her that day now.

Basket lessons have been getting more serious. We aren’t just doing thoughts or simple lessons. Now we’re giving them challenges. We spent the past two weeks talking about the Book of Mormon, what it is, why, and all that. We had them take some to read and report the next time. It’s going well. We also told them if this is something you feel is true or want in your life, think about baptism. We and a member taught about having proper priesthood authority too.

One way cool experience we had was that a sister from the ward called us after Sunday morning session and asked if we could come over and give her husband a blessing. He has a bad cold right now and he’s goin in for cataract surgery this Thursday. We said yes right away and she said she was very grateful because she’s never seen the ward or missionaries say yes to something so fast. I love giving blessings. I don’t get nervous anymore. It’s such a good feeling to know I can do that, that people rely on me for that chance to send God’s power down. I don’t know, just hit me and made me think how cool it is to be able to bless people, way!

Love you tons,
Elder Janz 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Memorial City, Week 27: March 23, 2015 - March 29, 2015

Monday, March 30, 2015

So, we had a slower week, not nearly as exciting and able to do as much as the last two. We thought we were the only ones who struggled, but turns out the sister missionaries in the ward struggled too, and the whole district struggled as well. Then I read the report from President and in fact the whole mission had a rough week. So, that was interesting and, in a way, made me feel better. But, one thing I forgot to mention, people here have been swimming in the pools for two weeks now. So summer has begun here. It’s quite weird. But things with the investigators... The way i see it is that we had a rough week and not much worked out, 3but the few things that did happen were quite awesome and gave us hope.

The crazy sister family did accept to be baptized. We had a sweet lesson with them this week. We were worried about it because we had to teach outside since we didn’t have another man around the house. One of the mission rules, have to have 16 year old or older guys around to enter rooms with females. We planned to teach about temples and family history and even word of wisdom. We were just worried they wouldn’t understand or the word of wisdom wouldn’t be received well. But, we went out and taught by the apartment pool and just went for it. We just told ourselves the odds are against us, things aren’t ideal but it actually went really well. I felt like Christ teaching in Jerusalem and also on the shore of Galilee because they gathered around us and also had a few friends come over and we had a great lesson with them outside. They understood the need for temples and they accepted to live the word of wisdom! The Spirit really helped us teach these things to their understanding. The mom, Beverly, has a problem with smoking cigarettes, but we just promised her that the atonement and her strength will be enough to stop. She is very committed to it.

So we plan to see Marjorie tonight. The FHE is tonight and we also invited a less active brother to come as well since he doesn’t have any family to do it with. We weren’t able to see Marjorie or Sara this week. We called and called and eft messages and we’re just waiting to hear back. That’s the status with a lot of investigators. But, we also got another baptismal date with an investigator named Julie. She’s a young single mom probably around 20 or so. We have seen her twice now and she is solid. Very willing to read, pray and come to church. Unfortunately no investigators came to church. They had intention to, but things came up I guess. I just want to share testimony that sometimes the Lord humbles us and shows us that we need to still be happy and have tons of faith in him even if nothing is working out. He wants us to have the same drive as when things are great in the mission even if nothing is working out. And, I know that challenges are only temporary and that they come to help us be stronger and reminded that God is the one who plans everything out. Maybe that’s why this week was so rough, because the past two weeks were really good the Lord wants to show us that He is the one who made those things happen and not let the success get to our head.

We also had interviews with President this week. Elder Christensen was nervous for them. It was my first time too. He makes you teach him before the interview and then he gives feedback. Turns out Elder Christensen didn’t do so well. Probably because of nervousness. But he learned a lot from President right after and then the next day we studied what he wasn’t able to explain and he knows it well now. My interview went really well. I taught about repentance and President said I did a great job. But it was an interesting week. There were small little miracles and things to be excited about a midst lots of things to be sad and worried about. But we’re A Okay and glad that it wasn’t completely awful and we’re ready to begin a new week!

Love ya,
Elder Janz