Monday, September 10, 2012

Elder Langford's Weekly Update:  September 10, 2012

 Go great to read Jeff's emails every Monday.  We missed him last week because the public library was closed for Labor Day.  So great to hear from him today. 

Hello everyone,

So It's been a nice two weeks! We've been out biking a ton and have been talking to a lot of people.  I've just been writing little bullet points in my planer of things that I should write home to yah! So I'll try and stay organized here.
First off, we met this guy named Frank, and he's been through a whole lot!! He has dialysis a couple times a week, and has some form of disease in his foot, which they're trying to stop. They've had to amputate three of his toes so far. So he's got a lot going on to say the least! We stopped by and asked him if we could help with anything, and he said he had this huge project in the shed he needed help with! We went over to help him, and we had to help him walk with a cane and wheelchair slowly to the shed, because he had just gotten back from having two dialysis days in a row. We arranged some stuff, and were walking him back to his house, and his legs just gave out. We had to carry this 260 pound man up the steps to his home, and onto his couch... It was super hard, but through faith and saying a prayer, we were able to get it done! So that was good! We went over again about a week later to help him again, and had some extra time before he was ready to go out.  We were able to teach him about the restoration and whole first lesson. We left him with a Book of Mormon, telling him to read and pray about it. Then I had the thought to give the baptismal invite ("will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone holding the Priesthood authority of God?"), which ha seemed a little bold, but I did it, and he accepted! That was good! It was a reminder to me that when the spirit tells you to do or say something, you just need to do it and have faith that it was meant to be said! That was a great experience, and we are looking forward to teaching him again next week! We've got high hopes for him! P.S. There was a HUGE spider on his house! (look up banana spider)!!! that's for you Hollie ;)
We also had a really good meeting as a zone that really made me think. We read a scripture, and we talked about how when we are comfortable on the mission, it is an act of pride... pretty intense! But if you think about it, when we lean back and think we've got something, we give up the chance to learn and continually grow. That was a big thing for me that I think applies to a lot of the aspects of life. It's not about getting somewhere and then flat lining in life, it's about continually finding ways to grow and improve, and staying close to the Lord, humbly allowing him to direct and guide you to ever increase in ways you wouldn't, if you just assumed you were 'comfortable' in it already! Let us not get comfortable in our scripture reading!
Another great story is an investigator, who had been antied several times, who had comitted to coming to church.  Afterwards, has been coming, and has really enjoyed it! She even set up a day to take us to Golden Corral (I kid you not we've been taken there 4 times, with two more on the way next week... seems to be the place people like to take two bottomless pits)! So we met with her before we went, showed her the restoration DVD, and talked more about the church.  She said that if she came to know of the truth, that she would be baptized! That was a great miracle, and we're hoping to continually meet with her and help guide her path towards that goal!
Speaking of food, we had 2 days in a row last week where we had two dinners in the same day by different people, one of those being Golden Corral... Haha doing my best to keep the weight off, but I mean two dinners a day isn't a consistent aid to that goal!!! We've been fed well though, we're getting some good food from everywhere! Probably my favorite still was eggs, rice, beans, and this incredible sausage and gravy, ALL mixed together! Man. I'm literally drooling, because I haven't eaten lunch yet today/!!  (P.S. This maybe a surprise to many, including myself, but I'm actually starting to really like mashed potatoes... missions really do change you!)
I've had two exchanges, where my companion has left me, and another comes in from another area, leaving me to make all the plans, and basically take the lead in the whole day... It's pretty crazy when you have to plan out twelve hours, who to see, what to do, where to go.  It's a great growing experience, and they've gone really well! I'm ALMOST feeling good about him leaving for good in three weeks, and being replaced with someone new in the area! Crazy. Plus there's a possibility that I could be training a missionary in like six weeks! Growing happens fast out here!!!
One more thing I got time for.  We've been teaching some lessons to this in-active lady who's really been through a lot. In a nut shell, she used to be a caregiver for handicapped kids, and one of the kids made up a big story about abuse, and now she has had those kids taken away, barely gets to see them, and has a court case facing abuse trials... We think she'll win the case no problem, but still won't be able to be a full time care giver for them anymore... Such a sad story there... She lives alone and has had a smoking and coffee addiction for a while. She's literally one of the nicest, most humble people I've met. When we went over, we took a new member of the ward who was actually looking for a place to stay. He has this very outgoing, always smiling, and very friendly personality! He actually did all the dishes after she fed us spaghetti before we could!  During our visit, he mentioned he was in the search for a place to live for a bit before they moved to Hampstead, and she immediately offered her house! It had a whole extra upstairs, and she said that he and his wife were welcome! He said he might check it out, and turns out on our next time coming down to meet her, they had moved in! So that was a blessing to see that! They've helped each other grow, and they've been soo good to her! They've all loved being with each other, and we're so happy that we were able to help that miracle! But that's not even the best part! After a couple meetings, she gave us a call out of the blue, and said that she was done smoking and drinking coffee, and that she wanted a priesthood blessing to help her stop. That has been SUCH a miracle! So incredible. She was willing to stop cold turkey. It's so amazing to see the happiness and guidance the Lord puts in our lives as we seek it out! She had been reading scriptures daily, and just felt it was time! We gave her the blessing, and it's almost been a week, and she's been doing great! Hasn't had a problem, and is firm in her decision! It's been a week of so many miracles! I'm loving working here, and am growing exponentially! Growing up is weird.... I can feel it happening and I feel all adultish sometimes... That's a pretty good and necessary thing though, so I'm glad it's happening!
Looks like I've got time for a little more to write. Saturday we literally biked all day long. We seriously biked through most of our area! Pretty tiring! We would stop somewhere at a house, and I would seriously sweat little puddles... It's a furnace out here! A big, fat, wet, furnace! I've never drank so much sweat in my life! Thought 'Y'all' should know that. Anyway, I love you all sooo much!  I just want to let you know that the work's going great, and that I love to talk and tell you about it! This is the hardest, but most rewarding work I've ever done!

Love,  Elder Langford (Jeffrey)

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