Monday, April 24, 2017

President's Fireside

Hello to all my family, friends, and coaches back home, at school, and serving the Lord all around the world! I hope you all are well and had a great week.👌This week has been really good here in Apple Valley so I'll dive right in to our adventures from this week!

On Monday we had P day as usual and played some basketball at the Lakeville chapel. After p day was done we had dinner at the L's house and did a family home evening with them afterwards. I love the L family!😂 They are super cool and their kids are so funny haha. Their youngest son is a hoot and half. 😂 We did a lesson about the Stripling Warriors and read about them out of Alma and then wrote letters of encouragement and gratitude to each other, like Helaman did to Captain Moroni. So we wrote letters to each other and Elder S and I wrote ones to the L family. So anyways, their son tore up Elder S's letter. 😂😂 He is crazy! We also burned the outside edges to make them look old and authentic. It was really fun! Then we went to the Gs for K's birthday party which was a water balloon fight. 🙌 It was pretty fun! K and M are really opening up to us and we are starting to get a good relationship with them!

Tuesday we had a district meeting and while Elder S and I were giving a training, this guy walks in and says he needs to talk to us in private. So Elder S and K went to talk to him and I finished giving the training to all the sisters. A true "Sistrict Leader". 😂😂 Apparently the guy wanted money for a plane ticket or something so we just referred him to the Prince of Peace church we do service at.  After district meeting we went to zone service at Prince of Peace and then we had a lesson with D. We read 2 Nephi 31 with him and talked about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He starting asking questions about the last verse where it says that God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are one god without end. He said he had always believed in the trinity so we taught him the first vision again. He said Joseph couldn't have seen God face to face because Moses couldn't either. So we shared a scripture in the Old Testament where a guy named Jacob saw God face to face and also in the Pearl of Great Price in Moses where it expounds on Moses actually seeing God and talking to him face to face. It was a really good discussion and by the end D was able to recognize that they are 3 separate and distinct beings but are one in purpose: "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." I'm grateful for scriptures to back up our teaching and for the Holy Ghost to testify to him that what we were teaching is true. He was able to understand the scriptures and listen to the Spirit. It was great! Tuesday night we tracted and didn't really find anyone haha. One of the first doors we knocked on this guy answered and was like, "Hey what's up guys?" And we gave our little shpeel and he goes, "Well I'm a Christian, so I don't want to hear your message." I said "So you're Christian but you don't want to hear a message about Christ?" He just kind of blankly stared at us and I think he realized how stupid he sounded and then was like "Uh yeah.... have a good evening guys." And shut the door.😑 I just have to laugh at some people.😂 

Wednesday was exchanges with the ZLs! Elder K came to A-Val with me and Elder S went to Crystal Lake with Elder K. We had a lesson with T and Brother M in our ward came joint teaching with us. He is a convert so he was a good help in sharing his testimony and the blessings of the church. T had a question about what the purpose of life was so we taught her the plan of salvation. It was a little scattered cuz she kept asking random questions but we basically just ended up using scriptures and testifying that God has a plan for each of us and that this life is the time to prepare to meet our Heavenly Father again. We are here to learn and grow and progress and also to be happy! God didn't put us here to be miserable. 😃 I thought it was a really good lesson and the Spirit was definitely there. She told us she isn't looking to change religions but she's changed her church twice in the last two years and keeps inviting us over because she said we have answers to doctrine and questions she's had that her church's can't answer.  So I'm confident she will progress, it will just be a slower process. She is reading the Book Of Mormon and praying right now, but she works on Sundays so she can't come to church. 😜After that we had an appointment with this lady named J T who is from Alabama. Elders W and T taught her when they were here, and she hasn't set up an appointment with us since I've been here. We finally got one set up at 4:00 pm on Wednesday. Our lesson with T got out at like 3:50 pm so we hurried down there and got there at about 4:06 pm. We called her and texted her letting her know we would be a little late but we're on our way. So we get there, knock on her door, and her granddaughter answers and says she just left.  I was like, "Wow, ok." She's done this like 3 times. It's getting really old. I swear she just tells us to come at 4 pm and then leaves at 3:50. 😂 We are going to start showing up at 3:45 so we can make sure to catch her home.👌We decided to visit B H cuz we had like 30 minutes. He was having dinner with a bunch of people in the memory care section of the old folks home. We had a great chat with all his friends and him about baseball and our church and what we do as missionaries! It was pretty funny too because some people are old and a little out of it. 😂 They are all so loving though. I really enjoy visiting the elderly folks in our ward. They have such great hearts and advice for us kids! Then we went tracting in these town homes that Elder S and I had started on Easter. We knocked in the rain for a while and had a funny experience and way cool one, too. So the funny one was we knocked on a door and this guy answers and Elder K is like, "Hey man, I'm Elder K, how's it going?" He says good. Elder K goes in for the handshake and the dude just stands there. He basically doesn't even acknowledge him. 😂😂 He said his name was M and said he was Jewish and then just slammed the door in our face. 😂😂 I was dying. 😂 He just totally rejected Elder K's handshake haha. Then we both felt impressed to knock this one row of town homes and one of the last doors we knocked this guy opens the door and lets us in. We shared the Easter video with his family and gave them a Book Of Mormon to read. He was super nice and said we could come back next week. Then we went to Panda for dinner and this guy got chased by like 6 cops and thrown on the ground and arrested right outside of Panda. 😅 It was crazy! Pretty sure it was a drug deal or something because they were pulling plastic bags of stuff out of his pockets.  It was crazy. Then we had a lesson with this less active guy. He said he took a break from life and basically sat in his basement and contemplated what he wanted in his life. He decided he wanted the church to be in his life, so we were like, "Sweet!" He didn't come to church on Sunday though.  

Then we went and played basketball at the Lakeville chapel. So Wednesday night basketball in Lakeville consists of non members and members who live Wednesday to Wednesday and treat basketball at the church like the super bowl. Not a good combo. So I was in the first game and we won the first game. The other team had a member on their team that was this short dude and thought he was really good but he wasn't. So on this fast break we had he hacked the crap out of this guy and then was running down the court with the ball and I stepped in front of him and I'm set and planted and he hits me and falls down and then gets up and proceeds to go off at me about how I'm a dirty player and I need to relax. I had nothing to say so I just walked away from him and that just made him more mad. 😂Anyways, we killed his team so he was out. Then the next game I'm running down the court on a fast break and I'm looking back for the ball at about half court. The guy I was guarding was running front of me and literally stops. Just stops and stands there with this back to me. I didn't see him cuz I'm looking back for the ball and I plowed him. Like Madden-truck sticked. I had a full head of steam and didn't see him and just killed him. So I stop and am like, "I'm sorry! I didn't mean to do that!" and then kept playing. I got the ball and layed it in. Then the short dude from the first game stops the game, walks out on the court and proceeds to just rip into me about how I'm a dirty player and I need to quit fouling everyone and I was like, "Look dude, you need to relax. I'm not purposely fouling, and you need to back off me before we both do something stupid." He keeps freakin out at me so I once again, turned my back and walked away. He was so pissed and I was about ready to kill him. But I didn't haha. 😂😂 Not sure if I'm going to be going to Wednesday night basketball anymore. 😉 I did learn I need to pray for charity because I was almost to the point where I was going to beat the crap out of that guy. It just makes me really mad when people rip on me for playing hard. I don't play dirty, I just play hard.  Anyway, good lesson for me. Moroni chapter 7.👌

Thursday we switched back companionships at the church and then we went and grabbed some TP cuz we were out, and then we went to Lakeville chapel for lunch with the other district. The Lake Marion Elders had a service project at their investigator's house. She had a garage full of junk and a storage pod full of junk, too. We moved all of it to her front yard so the junk collector people could come pick it up. She has the cutest little German Shepherd puppy. She was adorable! We had a lot of fun and it was great to serve her! After we went out with Brother M to visit less actives. We saw J and A and A's daughter was there with them, too. Brother M was telling all these really weird stories and they were like, "This guy is crazy." 😂 We also found a few of the lost sheep on our list of people that the Ward Mission Leader wants us to try and locate so that was good! That was about it for Thursday!💯

Friday was weekly planning and then we had a lesson with HC who is a less active guy. His wife is a non member and is pretty anti-Mormon. He always tells us he will be at church but never shows up, so I don't know if he ever will come to church, but keep him in your prayers! He's a good guy! After that was mission-wide finding hour, so we tracted for about an hour and half. We knocked on this one lady's door and she wasn't super interested and Elder S charmed her into letting us in and sharing a restoration lesson with her!😂💯 Elder S is the man! Then we met this dude from New Jersey or somewhere like that (he had a jersey accent) and he took a Book Of Mormon and said he would check it out and we could swing by another time and share more with him! It was pretty good, but after that we either got the door slammed on us or no one answered, so we started out hot but ended ice cold.❄ It was fun though! We then had dinner with the Ss. Sister S is a member and her husband isn't, and their kids are less active. Her son is playing football in Crookston, MN at a D2 school as a QB, so we talked about football a lot. That school is really bad so I don't know how good he is?  Sister S's brother and niece from Utah were there and said they went to Clearfield High School. He asked if I knew a guy that I played football with in high school! He said his son had served a mission with him so that was really cool to make that connection.  It was a fun evening and we connected well with Brother S.👌Then we had a lesson with JG at Starbucks and taught the restoration because she said she doesn't really know a whole lot about church doctrine and stuff. So we are teaching her all the lessons again! It was good, and we committed her to start reading the Book Of Mormon each day. Then we had a fire at the Gs with M and K. That was fun and we had a good chat about school and stuff with everyone. Then we headed home. 😴

Saturday we helped the Ks, a less active family, move stuff from storage to their new town home. It was pretty fun and I learned how to put together a bed frame and all that, so I'm a pro now basically. 😂 Just kidding! Then Brother S took us to Subway for brunch with his wife who isn't a member. She believes everything and comes to church, I just don't know why she isn't a member.  Still building a good relationship to feel comfortable talking to them about it! Then we went and visited SP in the old folks home. He is super cool. He served his mission in California and then served at a church college in New Zealand for 4 years. He is really smart and has some cool stories, too. It was a fun visit! Then we went and did a chalk drawing of the Plan of Salvation on a walking path around a lake. We talked to like 10 people about it, and these younger kids helped us out with it, too. They were like, "Hey, can we help?" And I was like, "Sure!" Then we taught them as we drew, and then taught their parents, too. It was really fun!🙌🏽After that we headed to the church for the fundraiser dinner by the scouts.  It was Cafe Rio pork burritos. Then we did some stop bys with Brother M and found a dude who said we could stop by this week in the evenings. He lived where a potential used to live. 😂 Then I got to conduct a baptismal interview for a lady who is getting baptized in the Crystal Lake ward. It was really cool! I was stressing a little because it was my first interview, but it was awesome. I really felt God's love for this woman, and she has sincere desires to follow Christ. So she passed and it was great! She is getting baptized on May 1. Then we headed home and called it a night. 

Sunday we had Ward Council and then Sacrament. M came to church with D and ES's husband also came and we are meeting with them this week. E is less active and her husband just got back from Africa. So we had a good turnout this week. J and M came to church, too, and J stayed all three hours so that was great! Elder S and I taught the lesson for the combined youth third hour on how we can be better member missionaries and prepare for missions. It was fun! Then we went and stopped by the Jets fan guy we found last week and he took a Book Of Mormon and said he would check out Mormon.org and maybe come to church next week! Then we stopped by the lady whose husband passed away and she said she is really busy this week but we could come by in a few weeks and we could sit down and have a lesson! I'm excited to teach her, she is super nice and humble. 

Then we stopped by the lady who we found last week and she is like all interested in meeting with us now haha. We helped her move a TV and then talked for a while and she said she wants to meet next Sunday afternoon and we can share our message and she will share hers, and we won't try to convince each other our religion is true. I'm just planning on the Spirit doing that. 😉👌Then we tracted and had a way funny experience. 😂 We were walking down this street and this little kid comes riding up on his bike and asks us why we're all dressed up? We told him we were missionaries and taught about Jesus Christ and asked if his mom was home. He said, "Yes! Go talk to her!" So we went and knocked on her door and she talked to us for like 5 minutes and then he and this other kid came up on their bikes. She asked where they had been and they said they went across the railroad tracks and they weren't supposed to. The mom said that he needed to come inside in timeout for a while and the friend needed to go home. So the friend starts biking down the road and he comes running out of the house and chases the kid down and pulls him off the bike and starts throwing haymakers at him. Elder S and I are like, "What the heck is going on?" It was super funny. 😂😂 Anyway, it was pretty great. 

Then we went to the President's Fireside. Sister G drove us and D up and it was great! The Minnesota Mormon Chorale performed and D loved it. The Spirit was so strong and the testimonies that were shared were all amazing. D was in tears half the time and one of the songs he was like waving his hands in the air and Sister G was like holding him down. 😂😂 D gets way into it haha. Afterwards he met President Forbes and Elder Stacey of the seventy that was there. It was great! Such a great week, and I'm looking forward to another great one. I also hit 10 months on Saturday, so that was pretty crazyI love the mission and I'm excited to continue the work here in A-Val this week! Love you all and keep my dad and grandma in your prayers this week! Thanks!🙏💙

Much love,
Elder Beach
#MavUp #10
At the President's Fireside.

At the President's Fireside.

I got to see a former investigator at the fireside.  He is getting baptized in a few weeks!

Exchanges!

Chalking at the park.

Elder S found a turtle!

One of the Elders going home next transfer.  This is his "death" party.

When an Elder goes home, they "die"...