This week was really good. We found out this week that Kristena doesn't want to put forth the effort to read the Book of Mormon or to make commitments to do anything we ask her to. She doesn't think it's worth it even though she's seen it change her mom's life and she told us that she feels miserable all the time. She also doesn't think she has enough time with her husband that doesn't do anything and her two year old. I thought to myself if you even knew what my mom dealt with, but I held my tongue. Actually I just thought of that now after reading my mom's latest email so I wasn't even thinking of it during the lesson. We were able to set up and meet with the Stricklands again after they missed our appointment on Monday. We had a really good lesson on the Plan of Salvation and we started to bring up things like covenants and baptism and she told us that she really likes the church she has started going to and while she loves it when we come over and teach them she doesn't want to leave the church she grew up in and has now returned to. Sigh. So we talked to her about Prophets and the Priesthood and that she needs to pray about the Book of Mormon to know if it's true because right now she just thinks that it's a nice book that makes her feel good. Sigh. So we'll see where that goes. I don't know if I talked about Delinda last time but we had another good lesson with her on the Restoration and it went really well. She is really open minded and she said the closing prayer and asked to know if it's true. We also said we could text her scriptures to read everyday (because Elder Packer taught us the importance of following-up) and she thought that it was a grand idea. So we've been doing our best to remember to do that everyday. There is also a guy named Robby (Robbie?) who lives there. We don't know if they are romantically involved or platonically or what, but he sits in on the lessons and he's quiet but he seems pretty open to the gospel as well. Then we got a new investigator named Steve. We found Steve when we texted everybody on our phone and asked them if they would like us to share a Christmas message with them. He was one of the few that replied and one of the fewer who replied saying yes. We couldn't find him in our area book but he had obviously met with missionaries before because we had his number. So we met with him and he lives alone, I don't think he's ever been married and I doubt he has any kids. He's like 50ish and he seems pretty lonely. Bro. Ince (our new branch mission leader, I gave him the nickname The Incinerator, I haven't told him yet though...) was with us and he started talking with Steve about family history and Steve seemed pretty interested. So hopefully we can get him into family history because he seems pretty lonely and then he'll get baptized because the branch will do great at fellowshipping him.
On Tuesday we had exchanges with the zone leaders. I went to Joplin again and Elder Reed came to Parsons. I was with the new zone leader Elder Drake. He's really chill. He is also a really big Star Wars fan. So we had some very good discussions about Star Wars while hanging up clothes at a thrift store. The exchange was really fun. Then we had district meeting and on the way back Elder Cluff and I stopped at a Pizza Hut and thought we would be on time for the buffet even though neither of us knew the buffet hours. It turns out that the buffet closes at 1 o'clock. We got there at 1:15... However there was still a bunch of pizza left on the buffet table and the lady told us we could have whatever was left. Well, we went ham and ate all of it. There was like half a pizza left and 4 breadsticks or something like that. It was all cold but hey food's food right? Then the lady only charged us half price because the food was cold. We paid like $3 for like 3 pizzas, it was great. Saturday we were trying to contact a bunch of potentials and share He is the Gift with them. We were riding our bikes and lo' and behold we saw Howard, driving his lawnmower with a little trailer attached going to go chop some firewood that he tries to sell. We decided to help him. We don't know if he had permission to get wood from where he got it and I'll leave it at that. Then on Saturday night we were chilling in the apartment planning or something like that, and a member dude from Joplin called us. Long story short, his daughter lives in Parsons with her mother (who isn't too fond of the church and won't let her daughter get baptized which is why we've never met her but her number is in our phone). And his daughter was with him and they had their ward Christmas party and his daughter asked Santa for her friend (who lives in Parsons) to have a good Christmas and that was her wish. So their ward is most likely going to put something together for this girl's friend's family and bring it over and if they do they want us to come too and maybe try to share a message (He is the Gift) and then baptize them or something like that. He hasn't gotten back to us yet so we'll see but pray that it goes through because we always love new investigators.
Yesterday, Monday, was zone conference. Our stake was assigned to go to the Springfield, Missouri one. So we had to be in Joplin by 7 in the morning to get a ride from a member from Neosho that the Neosho Elders arranged for us so we didn't kill our miles. So we would have to leave Parsons at 5:45 in order to get to Joplin on time. So we got up at 4:30 and got ready by 5... So we just waited for 45 minutes for no reason. The conference was a blast though. They had fun and games for the first two hours (8:30-10:30ish) then lunch for like an hour and then Book of Mormon for like 5 hours straight. The Book of Mormon was the theme for the conference. It was really, really good. From start to finish it felt like 2 hours even though it was like 8. After that we rode back to Parsons and we walked into our apartment approximately at 9. So the whole day was zone conference. So our Prep day is today.
Well I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. Always remember that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is God's kingdom on the Earth today. The Book of Mormon is so, so, so powerful and sacred. Never take it lightly. It is proof of the Restoration and that Joseph Smith was and is a prophet. READ IT! It will change your life for the better. We have a special opportunity to remember the Gift that Heavenly Father gave us which is Jesus Christ, so make this time a special time, because it is important. It is the most important thing ever: Alma 7:7.
The OG crew