This week went pretty well. Once again a lot of driving. We said goodbyes Monday for Elder Hernandez and then Tuesday we headed down to Bakersfield. I got Elder Puyogao and we headed back. Elder Puyogao is awesome. he is teaching me a bunch of one liners in tagalog. We had to meet with the sisters that were taking over first ward and explain to them the area and things like that.
Wednesday we had an hour and meet the assistants to get the new phones. The mission just switched from sprint to at&t. So we went and picked up the phones and brought them back.
We were able to find a few new people to teach this week so we will hopefully be able to continue to find and progress someone to baptism for June.
This Sunday I gave a talk in church. It was on "the power of repentance". I talked about what true repentance looks like and the change or effect that takes place within us when we are truly repentant. I talked about how when we find relief from something we want to share it with others. I shared the story from Elder Bednar in the 2014 general conference talk titles "come and see". Its a funny story and a great talk. I talked about how sometimes we have fear in sharing the gospel. We have a fear of rejection or that we don't want our friends to think were just super crazy about sharing the gospel. But there is great comfort in this scripture. 3 Nephi 18:31-32
31 But if he repent not he shall not be numbered among my people, that he may not destroy my people, for behold I know my sheep, and they are numbered.
32 Nevertheless, ye shall not cast him out of your synagogues, or your places of worship, for unto such shall ye continue to minister; for ye know not but what they will return and repent, and come unto me with full purpose of heart, and I shall heal them; and ye shall be the means of bringing salvation unto them.
Continue to share the gospel with those you know. Your testimony can go a long way. When we bear fervent testimony we are giving the spirit the opportunity to bear witness of the things that what we are saying are true. That is the easiest way to invite the spirit. Bear your testimony.
Other than that not a whole lot happened. Its really slow right now as we are in the rebuilding process.
So transfers are tomorrow. Elder Hernandez is leaving. I will be getting a new companion his name is Elder Puyogao. He is from the Philippines. He is a new zone leader that just got called to be a zone leader so I am "training" him on the process. He served in my zone in Lancaster so I already know who he is which is nice. With this transfer coming to an end and moving forward i only have two transfers left which means I am going into my last 12 weeks in the mission field. That is a scary thought.
This past week was a very long one. The temperatures are starting to reach the high 90's with it getting into the 100's this upcoming week. It doesn't help with it being so dry outside. We spent Wednesday knocking almost the whole day. I've never been so worn down from the weather. So we are making to sure to definitely drink lots of water.
Other than that this week was pretty slow. We weren't able to find a ton of people. Starting from scratch is never fun but we are working hard so we can have that baptism in June.
This morning got off to an early start. We woke up at 5:30 and a member drove us up to the Mt. Whitney area to go fishing.On the way we stopped to go help this guy stuck way out in the dunes. So we went and pulled him out in the members car. There wasn't very many fish out and about. We fished from like 8:00 to 12:00 and out of the 6 of us only 3 people caught one fish. There wasn't many fish in the area we were at but everywhere else is dried up haha. but at least we caught one and had a ton of fun.
Oh also they are putting another set of sister in our zone. They are taking away one of the wards that we cover and giving it to those sisters. So now our zone is even more of a "relief society" haha. There are 6 sisters in the city Ridgecrest and just us two elders and then in the zone 8 sisters and 4 elders. Were outnumbered. Not to sure what Heavenly Father is trying to teach me with this one but it will be a lot of fun.
Me pointing at Mt. Whitney ( like my fishing gear ;) ) and the second is with my fish
This week FLEW by. But then again almost none of the week was spent in our area. Tuesday we had a few lessons because the next few days we wouldn't be in Ridgecrest. Wednesday morning we woke and drove down to Tehachapi for a meeting. We had our monthly Mission Leadership Council. It went really well. There we decided that we are going to switch up our contacting approach as a mission. It used to be this thing called "No Outs" so if someone said they were busy just kind of distract them from why they were busy and keep teaching them. Now we are sharing a brief message and asking them if they would be interested in hearing more. Those two being polar opposites you could imagine how it would be a little awkward at first which it was. but we are slowly getting the hang of it and it is becoming more effective. The purpose of it is so that we can talk with more people and actually find those that are prepared to hear our message.
After that meeting we drove down to Palmdale for an exchange with our assistants. That went pretty well also. It was super funny. At night we went to visit one of their recent converts. She has a bunch of little kids, so one of them and I start play fighting. The other brother who is even younger thought we were really fighting so he took the banana peel from the banana he was eating and threw it at me. I wasnt looking at him so out of no where a banana peel hit me right in the face. It was pretty funny how defensive he was over his brother. The elder i was with got a big kick out of it.
Thursday morning when we left to drive back to Ridgecrest out car battery would start so we had to wait for a member to come jump us. Then we drove it to Pep Boys. They weren't helping us be time effective at all. It took 3 hours for us to get in and get out of there. They put us last on the list. So we did not get home until like 5:30. Then we had to plan for our meeting for Friday which we had not done yet. So we rushed to plan that because we had a lesson at 7.
Friday we drove up to Lone Pine for our Zone Training Meeting. It went really well also. A lot of information was given. We introduced to our zone the new pamphlets that we received. They are really cool.
Saturday we had another baptism. It was nice because it was a part member family and the dad was able to baptism his son. it was a nice moment for them you could tell.
Things are going well. It was nice to be able to talk with the family Sunday night. Hope you all have a great week.
This past week was incredible. I have never learned so much in one week. A lot of it I'm not going to share because it is not my story to tell. But a lot of the people we are working with right now are experiencing some tough life trials. Hearing them pour their hearts out to you about the trials and if they don't know if they can make it through it really makes an impact on you. When this mother talked about her daughters trial it got me teary eyed and if many of you know me well you know I'm usually not a crier. But it is amazing to see how the Gospel puts a light in them and gives them " a perfect brightness of hope" as Nephi explains to us. The gospel really does changes our lives if we let it.
On a positive note we had 3 baptisms this past weekend :) :) :)
I got to baptize one of the girls. It was a lot of fun working with this family.
On Sunday it was super crazy because we had 4 confirmations to do during sacrament meeting. One of them was from the lady who got baptized last week before stake conference. But it was so cool to be able to see so many people get confirmed. We were really busy this week with lessons, service, and getting stuff ready for the baptism.
For service this week we did some yard work for a member. We also helped out with this big community service project at the fairgrounds in Ridgecrest.
A lot of what I wanted to share is probably to personal regarding others lives so today might be a little bit shorter of an email. I'm grateful to be in ridgecrest even though here soon it is going to start getting to be like 115 outside. But rain or shine the work must go forward and it always will. I love this work and the joy it brings to others and to me. Hope you all have a great week.