(from the blog master: sorry, we were taking four kids to college this week, so Jake's letter from last week was posted earlier today. Please be sure to read both.)
Hey all! I don't know why I used that as my headline but it's the mood I'm in haha. It was a much better week this week. We were able to double the number of lessons from last week and talk to a few more people. That's no fun that both you and Lacey had flat/destroyed tires on your road trips north! And that's really dumb that U-Haul doesn't provide a spare tire. They didn't charge anything did they?
We did a lot more walking this week. Montana just passed through a freeze spell that put us down in the 40's. I loved it though, I'm not a fan of the heat! This is the best time of year in my opinion! While walking around, I actually saw Kim Dillon who was someone I worked with in Powell! The LDS world is SO small.
We had a troubling dinner that night...we actually didn't have a place to go for dinner so we showed up at Panda Express. The sisters were there with a member who was taking them out to dinner. He got all mad thinking we planned to bum a free dinner off of him. We explained it was totally not planned and he bought us dinner anyway. (This guy owns a Porsche and has travelled the world, so he wasn't hurting for money either). Anyway, there is a teaching technique in our mission that we are big on. Inviting investigators to be baptized on the first lesson. Every time. Preach My Gospel mentions 5 times we are to invite investigators to be baptized INCLUDING the first lesson. This man said he refuses to give referrals to the sisters for that reason and in his words said, "I am tired of you sisters asking the ward to do missionary work." The sisters apologized if they seemed pushy and his reply was, "Oh, I don't just feel that way, the whole ward does!" I was ready to blow up on this man. He went on to blaspheme truths taught in the temple and he's been a former Bishop as well as a temple worker!
We later heard word that this mentality was spreading to other wards. When did Jesus Christ NOT invite people to be baptized the first lesson? Over and over again whether it be to the Nephites or to the Jews, "this is My Doctrine. Repent and BE BAPTIZED." If we aren't inviting people to repent and be baptized, what is our purpose in seeing them as a missionary in the first place? This man said, "Now if Elder Oaks came down and told us we need to do missionary work, we would do it." I responded, "see that's a problem." As if Jesus Christ and the Apostles haven't mentioned it before? This week I have definitely seen a lot of "sifting" going on even among members of the church.
I had a more fun experience later in the week though :) We were n splits with the Skyview ward and I was with the Elders Quorum President. We were visiting Part-member families and prospective Elders. We knocked on a man's door who wasn't home. When we walked out, a car rolled up and a man got out. This is the conversation:
Brother Kimball: Hey are you Brother ______?
Man: WHAT?!?! (really mad)
Man: Yes. What do you want man.
Kimball: You're a member of our church so we came by to visit you.
Man: Michael Jordan is my church. But I want Jesus to visit me!
Me: Well we're not Jesus but...
Man: GOD is in me. JESUS is in me. I am GOD. I am JESUS. BOW DOWN.
Me:I'm not going to bow down to you.
*Asks me to bow down 2 more times*
Man: I want Brigham Young to arm wrestle me.
Me: I've heard Joseph Smith is a good wrestler!
Man: I AM a good wrestler.
* He walks into the middle of the street pretending to converse with God*
Man: Lord, these...BRETHREN (spitefully) want me to bow down to them. They think they are prophets!
Me: Yeah we never said we were prophets...
Man: But you believe in prophets!
Me: Yes we do!
Man: BOW DOWN
Me: I will bow down to God. Let's all bow down and say a prayer.
*We all kneel but Brother Kimball squats down (we were in the middle of the road)*
Me: *Offered a prayer to help this man*
Man: NO! (Slamming his hand on the ground). Lord thank you for these two gentleman. I love them. I love you. Amen.
Hahahahahahaa that made my top five favorite experiences of my mission! So funny, that guy was so gone!
Other things that were neat this week is we have been taking an active role in ministering to those who are on baptismal date within our zone (including those out of our area). We helped teach 3 of those lessons this week and they all went really well!
Thank you Grandpa for your missionary story! We laughed because we have had several people ask us if we've been saved before. Happy birthday Lacey! 23 o.O Holy Moly. I hope everyone enjoys school! Love you all and have a great week!