Some crazy stories this week. On Tuesday it was FREEZING outside (12 degrees) with high winds. We got a call from Sister Smith (who we've done a lot of service for). She wanted us to do some work for her and we told her it was way to cold to work outside. But she didn't think it was cold so she insisted haha. We ended up raking 2 really big flower beds and over-filled a large trailer with all the branches and dead plants that we raked up. We were there from about 12:30 to 4:45 in the freeeeezing wind. I was frustrated if you can't tell haha. And I ended up ripping my jeans so that just added to it :) On a happy note, dinner was legit! Sister Stalder cooked us 18oz steaks, corn, yams, cornbread and ice cream! (That is why I am getting fat).
Wednesday we went to the second-hand store called "Reruns." I found a sweet Jacket and a pair of jeans for a total of $4! So I was pretty stoked, I need those for service projects. Afterwards we visited James and he was outside again. He was depressed as usual but he said that he would start reading the BOM the next day before bed and he promised. So we were pretty excited about that...a few days later we checked back with him. We walk up to the door and the Book of Mormon is sitting outside on the porch with a bookmark in the second page of the Introduction to the BOM. We knocked on the door and held up the book and he said, "I was seized by an entity." He let us in and after further questioning and talking, his story goes as follows:
"I started to read the Book of Mormon before bed and fell asleep. I woke up to pee and something had me in an eagle claw (demonstrates him being choked) and it was the devil! I couldn't see him but it felt like I was going to die and I couldn't get up! Till eventually I sat up. I thought to myself, 'what did I do before I went to bed?' I remembered I started reading the Book of Mormon. So I put it outside because it invited in an evil spirit. It's not in harmony with the Bible and is just pagan doctrine. Honest to truth it scared me and I won't read it again!"
He explained this story about...hmmm...6 times or so with a demonstration each time. He's out of his mind. Either way we told him about how Joseph Smith was seized upon and that before any good thing, Satan does his best to interrupt. He wasn't buying it and said we were there pretty much to deceive "the elect of God." So....we dropped him. What's sad is he can't even blame it on the Book of Mormon because he only read to the second page of the introduction. So that was a bummer and semi-funny because the way he acted it out wasn't very convincing...but either way we decided to drop him.
Funny story...we had gone to see Mark Sullivant (a less active) and he was just getting home. He told us that he had locked himself out of his house. So for about a half hour we helped him break into his own house by turning (and breaking) the doorknob with a pipe wrench haha. That was sweet! After visiting with Mark we headed to Gene and found him doing calf raises on his front porch :) We gave Gene his 12x12 book of Mormon! And on Saturday he said he had started it and was on page 18 of 1 Nephi :D He also came to church Sunday! We were pretty excited about that. Church was good because we had ANOTHER mission farewell, this time by Sara Dustin who is going to the Philippines. It was High Councilman Sunday and there was a musical number so the spirit was really strong. Hoping that Gene enjoyed it and could here it. After we visited Gene on Wednesday we ate at the Godfrey's home. We had Viel (?) stew which is actually baby calf. I guess they raise beef cows but this calf had frozen legs so they killed it and we ate it! It was pretty good as sad as that it haha. The Godfreys collect a ton of anticques. They have a pump player piano that you pump with your feet and it plays itself! It uses scrolls for music, it's pretty interesting. I took a video of it :D
Did more sheet-rock for Brother Stockett. We actually enjoy it because it's exercise and it's different from the every day stuff. And Brother Stockett is super cool. He took us to the Garlands for dinner and we had Salmon, Codfish, and Swordfish! Im tellin ya, the meals here are incredible. We gave Sister Garland a blessing which was neat. She's probably in her late 60's or early 70's and has severe arthritus in her hips. I anointed this time :) Afterwards we got free haircuts from Sister Anderson! Jordan (her 19 year old son) was there and I guess he's moving to Butte...which is a bummer because he really needs to get reactivated. He's such a cool kid.
Sunday (as usual) was the best day of the week. Between the farewell, musical number, and Gene coming, the meeting was super good. Afterwards we ate at the Roylances (who yes, mom, he is related to Robert Roylance! But not directly). Elk and beef roast, home grown carrots, potatoes, rolls....so good. The best part of the day was later that evening. Around 8 we went to see the Shammals. They are the couple that we visited on Easter and sang too. We didn;t have a discussion but talked about horses and bow hunting (which Brother Shammal LIVES for). He was so excited to show us all his saddles and bows and things like that. Something also neat was Roxanne (the non-member wife) was in Surprise this last weekend! And guess what part?! She said, "There was a Safeway on the corner and a big Catholic church on the other side? And Happy Trails trailer park and golf courses?" Haha! I told her that she was literally 5 minutes from my house! She was visiting family that lives in Happy Trails. But anyways, AFTERWARDS...we asked to leave with a prayer and I asked who they would like to say it. Brother Shammal said, "Well...I guess I'll take a shot at it." And he voluntarily gave the most beautiful prayer. The spirit was immense and he mentioned how he was simply happy that he was able to talk to the Elders about the things he enjoys. It's amazing how just loving your investigators can make a huge difference. So neat.
Last story, we visited the Wards again (the one's from Alaska who are extremely nice but don't want discussions). We sang to them and they loved it. The spirit was powerful as always and they invited us over for dinner sometime! Bonus!
Today we went to Butte! It's snowing pretty good there. Sister Stalder was nice enough to take us up there. We went to Walmart, Goodwill, and KFC. Fun day :) Well I hope you are all doing well! Good to hear that your knee is feeling better dad! I've been praying for you. Good luck Torie with your audition, you will do great! Just go with confidence and rely on the Spirit to help you play and comfort you! That's hilarious that Jesse picks a project that will improve his room haha but hey that's sweet! I'll have to look out for decorations he can put in there! They are everywhere up here!
Love and miss you all! I pray for you every day!