Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Pearland Texas, Week 88: May 23, 2016 - May 30, 2016

May 31, 2016

We got hit with many much rain this week. There was one point when we got stuck at a dinner appointment and the rain came down way hard,filling up the streets and just massive downpour. But, we only had the bikes because we were trying to budget car miles and the family couldn't give us a ride. So we biked home with all our water proof on and ready to go. We were almost home when we went through one trailer park and the water was literally up to my mid calf and we had no other way around. So the bikes became paddle boats and we trudged through some way deep water haha. it was pretty fun!!

We had a great work week this week!!! Austin came back to church for the first time in 5 weeks! So glad she made it. She also asked if she could get baptized a week earlier than planned!!! She had a work trip come up and she doesn't want to have to wait until after, so wants to be baptized before!! Its super awesome! Now the new date is for June 25. She's doing so well. She had like an hour long conversation with our ward mission leader about how her family isn't very supportive of her conversion and how she's going to get baptized and then break it to them after, haha, silly head.

But we were also able to teach more lessons than we have in a long time this week as well. Saw people we usually don't. And one cool biking update is that I now have a new record of miles biked in one day. Yesterday we biked 43 miles total!!!  It was insane. We also had a day of 36 miles too haha. Legs are just as heavy as tree trunks afterward. We had Brother Flores in church yesterday as well, yeah! He's also having us over for dinner tonight as well. I hope he can become an every Sunday guy now. He's way close. Sis Garza wasn't there for some reason. But we were bums and never went over last week to congratulate her more and to support. But we plan to see them today and we hope our visits really motivate them to come. Its all about getting the Spirit there and having it work on them and tell them what's up. So far its worked well on her, just need to get her husband too.

This ward is missionary minded and willing to work with it a lot though. They are great about having weekly correlation meetings with us and finding ways to help. I really hope we can get some new people this week. Like multiple. We are way low on investigators, just Austin and Dan and Sonya who we're seeing this evening. Pray that we can have an attitude of finding and that we will have courage to talk to everyone. I'm gonna do all that I can. Needs more peeps

Teaching Gospel Principles class was way cool. I've decided I just love teaching small groups haha. I don't get nervous at all anymore. I look forward to discussions or personal stories that crack people up.  We talked about Eternal Familes for the lesson and at one part focused on how to have healthy relationships within the family. I brought up how you once told me you and Dad rarely rarely fight. There's times when it seems like a fight but you'd say " OH we dont fight, we just argue sometimes" and they got a kick out of that.

My companion and I are doing good. Yeah we're having fun together. And today the other elders we do p-day with won't be around, so its just gonna be us two. We're gonna play some pool at the apartment and then go play ball, It'll be cool for us.

Love you tons,
Elder Deans

Crawfish Tie
Crawfish Boil

Crawfish Finger Puppets
These are sticker to the most famous gas station in Texas
Gnarly Watch Tan

NEWS!!! The church came out last week and said missionaries can wear sun/work straw hats while proselyting!  So we went for it and got walmart hats haha

Pearland Texas, Week 87: May 16, 2016 - May 22, 2016

May 23, 2016

I was praying the other night and I realized that I had been out 20 months!! I thought it was only 18 for some weird reason. But time just goes and goes. Transfer Update: I will be staying in Pearland this transfer!! I'll have the same companion, so we weren't affected by transfers. I'm happy about it. Its kinda funny because our ward mission leader asked me at church if i could teach the gospel principles class next week and  I was like "uhhh... yeah" because my companion kept telling me i would be leaving. So now I know that our ward mission leader was inspired and knew I'd still be here to teach. And I can rub it in my comps face, haha.

We had a bomb week as far as the work goes!! Austin accepted a baptismal date this week. She wants to be baptized on  July 2nd. We had our first lesson in her house this week, in the past its been out at restaurants. She'll be in church next week I believe. Her sisters are still in Lousiana and they'll stay there. We also had Sis. Garza and Bro. Flores, two different less active peeps, come to church this week for the first time in a long while because the lessons went so well with them this week.  Made me so happy! I joked with Sis. Garza that now that she came I needed to take a selfie with her because I know she hates them and she was like "NO elder" haha, pretty funny.

The crawfish boil was super intense this weekend. So it takes forever to cook those stinkers right? So while cooking, which is outside, a giant storm rolled in and there was lightning and wind and rain. We just kept cooking and then decided to eat and hang out inside even though it might stink up the church. We go in the church and dish up and then the lights lost power. Thankfully we had a quarter of the gym with lights on which lit up the place slightly. But it was yummy. Lots of good times with the members. Felt glad to be a part of the ward.

Love you,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Elder Deans

Pearland Texas, Week 86: May 9, 2016 - May 15, 2016

May 16, 2016

We had a pretty good week this week!!  We've really put a stress on finding new investigators and every day we had a good finding ttitude in street contacting as well. We've also been making plans with members to share the gospel with their friends. This week, we taught the most less active and recent convert lessons we ever have before as a companionship.

Had a huge highlight from Austin this morning.  We were a little discouraged because she has been in Louisiana for the past 4 weekends. She goes every weekend, or just about, to help her sisters who live there. Her dad doesn't take good care of them,  so she just got legal custody. Buuuttt,  she texted us and felt bad about being gone so often and then proceeded to tell us that she is ready to figure out what 'needs to be done to move forward' and what timeline she has because she just got over her concerns she said! So hopefully we have a date for baptism by the end of the week. We're also having a crawfish boil this weekend and almost everyone we teach will be invited. She should go and show us all how to be cajun.

We also had a cool experience doing street contacting and found a lady named Ashton that is pretty interested. I met her because we were walking down a sidewalk in a nice suburban neighborhood and we see a lady on the other side come out and grab something from the car. So we crossed the street to eventually walk across her place and she walked back inside or at least couldn't see her anymore. So we come to the house and looked over and she actually was just having a smoke on her porch. So I said the first thing that came to mind which was " do you know anyone around here who is going through a hard time or would want to hear a message about Christ?" And its funny because she heard it all weird and told us "oh i don't have any time right now, we're about to go" I just repeated my first question and she got it. She said she just moved in and didn't know anyone. Then we started to focus on her and asked if she was religious. She ended up asking us, before we gave anything, if she could have a pamphlet! Love those moments, actually happens quite a bit for some reason, haha. Guess we got some readers here. So the update with Troy kind of stinks. He actually moved. We had no idea, had to hear it from his neighbors. He's now in Sugar Land.

 Transfers will be next week and by this time i'll know my whereabouts. we will see. Very likely I'm bouncing again but it'd be wack if I did because i've never done a one and out. those are tough. We had a way cool zone conference this week on really owning our calling as a disciple and making sure every invite we extend is focused on the Savior and people know it comes from him. All we do is just echo his counsel. It felt good to try to get more into the lessons and commitments this week and make sure i wasn't just going through the motions. The Spirit does come a lot stronger if you know you are sent by God to help these people. Youve been set apart, you will have the words given to you to speak if you center everything on Christ. One less active family really felt it and was willing to come to church.

Love ya tons,
Elder Deans

Pearland Texas, Week 85: May 2, 2016 - May 8, 2016

May 9, 2016

 This week was good for us. I'll share some of the highlights from the work. So we actually have a new baptismal date!! Its for an investigator named Troy. We met him a while ago but finally got to have a solid lesson with him and he accepted to be baptized on June 4th. Hes hardly ever home because he works on the oil rigs out in the bay but were going to ask him more about his schedule and find time to meet with him every week.

Also got to have another good lesson with Austin. Answered some questions about the Book of Mormon and Bible and Joseph Smith. Thats her big hold up right now. She's having trouble knowing if Joseph Smith really was a prophet and if God spoke to him. So we plan to watch some videos of Joseph Smith. She's just gotta be as humble as possible and the Spirit will teach her and she can get her answer. She will be coming to church this upcoming weekend.

We had some great progress with less actives as well. We were able to see a less active recent convert family that we have been trying to teach for multiple weeks. Their name is the Zsigrays. We saw the husband washing his car outside and knew this would be a golden opportunity to actually catch them home and have a lesson. Had a cool lesson on the Gospel of Christ. They know they gotta come back to church they've just been busy. We also saw a single older lady this week with a kid in college from our ward and she came back to church yesterday for the first time in at least a month! So that was awesome. So those are the great things we have seen lately. We are excited. We've been going out to work with lots of energy because we know there are good things to come.

Love ya,                                                                                                                                                                                                              Elder Deans

Pearland Texas, Week 84: April 25, 2016 - May 1, 2016

May 2, 2016

We had a good week this week. Nothing crazy amazing in our area but for a big highlight in my last ward, Brandon got baptized!!! We were notified a week before and we got to go down to see his baptism! His brother baptized him and its crazy because the timing was perfect  since his brother Aaron leaves to Navy Officer training in less than a week. It was soooo awesome to see those studs again. Brandon was having the time of his life. He was way touched and cried throughout the program. I got to conduct the music there too so that was sweet. Ill try and send a picture of us all.

We made some great progress with our less actives and recent converts this week. One day we planned to see a convert that lives in the bottom of our area, about 15 miles away, named Dizzy. But we had been driving a lot that week and we ran out of our monthly allotted miles so we had to start biking the last few days. We ended up biking down the highway to go see her and she lives out in the boony country. I got fried that day from a long bike ride. I was lobster status even by the ride back after our lesson. We taught her the plan of salvation because she missed a temple prep class and us and the ward are helping her get to the temple for endowment. We had a great time teaching it. Turns out she is the mom of a lady I knew well in Alvin.

We also were able to get in and teach a family that hadn't been in contact with the ward or missionaries for months just a couple days ago. It was way unexpected. We think the only way we were able to get in is through their wild little boy that answered the door in his undies and was a total chatty kathy and telling us all the cool things they have recently bought like the Star Wars movie. We taught them a quick message on the atonement using Mosiah when it speaks about how salvation doesn't just come through the law of moses, but ultimately its through our utilization of the Atonement of Christ and the difference it makes in our lives. I compared it to living the gospel and treating it as a checklist or just going through the motions versus constantly relying on Christ to heal us, make up our imperfections, strengthen us. They loved the lesson. We''re gonna try to teach them more often. They're the Green family.

Besides that, things have been tough with investigators. Haven't been able to teach any of them. Austin is out of town, Dan was again busy and Dmitri was the same. We,re just going to find more investigators so if those fall through we're still seeing the good people we need to!

Love you tons,                                                                                                                                           Elder Deans

Pearland Texas, Week 83: April 18, 2016 - April 24, 2016

April 25, 2016

We had a great week over here!! The weather has been nuts. We've had some hard rain on and off here, but the flooding is elsewhere so thats nice. It doesnt flood over thanks to good city engineering and drainage. Plus, our apartment is on the third floor, which is fun to carry groceries or bikes all the way up haha. We stayed in last week but it wasn't all day. We were able to go out in the afternoon and didn't stay in any more after that. I've seen the pictures of the temple!! Yeah, thats amazing. Looks really pretty with the reflection though. We haven't done any clean up or flood service. We're waiting to hear back.

But as far as the work goes... Things were awesome this week. We were able to find a new investigator named Dmitri. We were walking through a trailer park looking for people to street contact and we saw some black dude and his wife hanging out on their porch so we waved and said hi but didnt go up to them becuase we thought they were busy. Then a few seconds later the Spirit totally chastened me and was like "dude, go back over there and talk to them, they will listen" So we turned around and I just said " Hey!  Can we show you somethin?" And they let us come up and talk to them. He said his name was Dmitri and he was with his mom. He's like 40 yrs old. But they were way happy we came back to talk to them and I told them I just felt prompted. Then I got our Restoration pamphlet out and taught a quick lesson to them. They enjoyed it and said we can come at any time. The Lord is truly preparing people to speak to us and we just have to listen to his promptings.

We also were able to have a good lesson with Dan again. This was my second time teaching him. We read from the Book of Mormon with him because we weren't sure if he had been reading it. He said he liked how we just read for our lesson because it forced him to read and he knew that he should be reading every day. He was going to come to church, but then his wife had to stay home and study for finals which meant he had to stay home and watch the kids. Once finals are over both he and his wife will be more open and able to make it to church.

 Austin is doing great. She took my companion and Elder Glover out to lunch. It kind of stunk becuase they went to a way popular bbq place called Killens and I was on exchange that day in Elder Glovers area in the ghetto of South Houston, haha. But its all good,  glad they had fun. They were able to have a lesson with Austin there. She didn't make it to church due to a trip out of town, work related. I told her that I had family that lived there, yeup. I also asked her what they call people from the boonies of Lousiana and she said it,  and we laughed because its kind of crude.

We got the bikes out this week. We biked a whole marathon on Saturday because of great weather and limited miles left on our car. My new comp and I get along really well. We are able to talk about anything, we agree on a lot of plans and we just have fun. There are times when we bug each other or we may disagree, but we don't hold on to it and let it go quickly

Love you tons.                                                                                                                                      Elder Janz