Monday, August 31, 2015

Growing Into The Missionary I Want To Be -August 31st, 2015

Hey guys! Hows everyone doing? I've really enjoyed all the emails and being able to talk to some of you while I've been out! Like I've said every week, the support and love that I receive is such a blessing and I truly appreciate everything! You're all so amazing and I love every single one of you!:) 

This last week was just fantastic! It was my first full week in Alabama and I loved almost every second of it! 
Wow I don't really know where to start, so much has happened! I think from now on i'll probably just do a short summary of each day and try to highlight the most important parts:)

You last heard from me on Monday, but I can't remember if I told you what happened to my companion! So we took a break from our writing and went to play some basketball. We were playing one on one and I spun around him and he went for the ball... The front of his head hit the back of mine and his glasses broke and cut his eyebrow pretty bad. He immediately started gushing blood all down his face and neck. It was crazy how much blood was coming out, it was freaking me out haha! We ran to the bathroom to try to get the bleeding to stop and it eventually did. We bandaged up his surprisingly big cut and called it good! Later that night I used the super glue provided by my "greenie" package and fixed his glasses! So everyone was happy! Especially Elder Anderson because he thinks it will turn into a cool eyebrow scar haha! 

On Tuesday we tracked for the beginning of the day, then went to the Chill factory (free frozen yogurt). After the chill factory we started doing some store contacting in publix, which i love, and eventually got ushered to leave haha! Publix is a grocery store and we're not technically allowed to teach in their stores but if someone comes up to us or starts a conversation then its not our fault haha! But yeah anyways some managers came and "ushered" us out... but whatever, they didn't say we couldn't come back!;) After that we went to our Tuesday night basketball! We basically do the same thing as the Elders in England! We just invite anyone and everyone to come play basketball with us and have fun then transition into teaching them! Its such a great way to get to know people and help them be comfortable around us to be willing to be taught! That night we had a good turnout, one of our investigators named Russ came and he had a lot of fun and we set up an appointment to teach him! He's sixteen and was actually a referral from his "girlfriend" in our ward! He was totally willing to learn the gospel, and I really hope he continues to progress! Anyways right when we started playing basketball, Elder Anderson was hit in the face with the basketball! His glasses were just demolished and he ended up cutting his other eyelid haha! He was fine but his glasses were not savable... Good thing he had an extra pair at the apartment and was only blind for a couple hours!

On Wednesday I went on my first exchange, which for anyone who doesn't know is when you basically switch companions with another companionship for a night. We switched with the zone leaders, so I ended up going into their area and being with Elder Virtue. I was a little apprehensive because I wanted to focus on our work in Monte Sano but it actually ended up being a lot of fun! We visited a bunch of good people and taught three lessons throughout the day! It was cool to get to know another elder and to spend some time in a different area! We also ate dinner with a true Alabama family, and it was so awesome! We had Chicken fried steak and mashed potatoes and it actually felt like I was in the south! They were the nicest people ever and told us some amazing stories about their conversion! They were true southerners and it was a perfect end to the day!

On Thursday we had district meeting, which is basically just training and discussions. After that we went to this pretty country restaurant called Pike Vile! They just sell burgers and fries, kinda like in-n-out, but holy cow it was so good! It was a hole in the wall type of place in the middle of nowhere but it was one of the best burger and fries I've ever had! Later that day we took a member named Brother Mazanis to teach an investigator for the first time. His name is Scott and he's a member of Church of Christ. We actually met his wife first from a referral and she said he had a lot of questions about our church. So we went into it thinking he was just going to try to bible bash with us the whole time, but he didn't! He was so respectful and just wanted to learn! He knows the bible so well and had a lot of questions about our religion and the Book of Mormon. He's a very religious guy with a lot of knowledge but we were able to teach him so much and have some amazing discussions with him. And we're going back this Thursday! He's a policeman and has two other jobs so Thursdays are the only days that work for him but i'm so excited to teach him more! He just kept expressing a desire to learn more about god and which religion was true, it was so awesome! 

On Friday we didn't really do much, we contacted a lot and tracted a lot. But we had an awesome dinner with a part member family, and he picked us up in his Camaro! Which was fun and instantly gave us something to talk about! We had such a fun night getting to know their family and we're going to try to go back and teach the husband! Their daughter was obsessed with one direction, so I was semi able to communicate and talk to her about them because of Faith haha! I know faith isn't obsessed with them but i still knew some stuff about One Direction that I probably wouldn't have if it weren't for faith! 

Saturday was very slow and long. My companion got pretty sick so we weren't able to do anything for most of the day. I studied and read quite a few books and cleaned the apartment some more. I tried to still be proactive and doing things but there was only so much I could do. I read A LOT of the bible though haha! I decided I'm going to read the whole standard works so that I can better understand all the stories and testimonies! That night I got the first CD of the Nashville tribute band and it was so great! I hadn't heard the whole redeemer CD so it was great to hear it all! It makes me feel so country when i'm listening to it haha! Such powerful songs and their just amazing singers so it brings the spirit so easily and just instantly! Thanks so much for that dad!

On Sunday we were pretty busy, which is pretty normal! We had meetings in the morning then church. One of our investigators named Tony came to church and loved it! He was even taking notes! haha I wasn't even taking notes for all of it lol! We're actually going to teach him after this! He's so awesome and he's from Idaho and I really feel like he's going to be baptized here soon. Such an awesome guy! Anyways after church we went an ate at a member then went with the member to go give a blessing to a man in the hospital. I provided the oil, my companion anointed him and the member gave the blessing. It was a great blessing and the spirit was so strong. After that we went to a Stake Priesthood meeting and heard from 5 church leaders, all of different callings. Some stake leaders, some patriarchs, and even one of our mission leaders! It was a great meeting and I got to meet all the Elders in our zone, which was awesome! 

Today is Monday (obviously) and today we had a zone activity! We have 22 missionaries all together in our zone! Like 6 sisters and 16 Elders! We played volleyball and kickball and it was a lot of fun! It was great getting to know everyone and I already feel like they're my family here! After the activity and goal setting we went to this restaurant called Steak and Shake and wow, so good! I don't know what it is but there are so many good burger and fry places down here! I had a portabello burger with fries and a Oreo mint cookies and cream shake! It was just fantastic! You guys would just love it! Maybe ill take you there when we come visit after these two years! 
And yeah, now i'm sitting in the church writing this email haha! 

Its been such a great week and its hard to write everything that happens but i'm keeping my journal so that ill be able to remember everything! A lot more things happened and maybe ill talk about them next week but this is it for this week!:) 

Its only been two weeks but i absolutely love being a missionary and being a tool in the Lords hands. I've come to understand and feel the true happiness that comes when you're in the service of Him. Its absolutely amazing. Its hard being away from people that you love so much but there isn't anything i'd rather be doing for these two years! Because I know that this church is true and because I know of the feeling that the gospel can bring into your life, all I want to do is share that feeling with everyone I see! The gospel blesses lives in ways unimaginable. And i'm honored to be able to be used by Christ to bring those blessings into peoples lives. 

I love you all. And like always, i'm sorry if I didn't reply to your email or letter this week. I'm trying my best and will respond to the others next Monday! Thank you so much for the letters and I can't wait to talk to you all more next week!

Sincerely, Elder Honn

p.s. here are a couple pictures of my apartment! I didn't take any picture this past week but ill try to do better this week! For now enjoy my comfortably tiny apartment:) 

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