Monday, March 31, 2014

"Loving the new area and companion, Strong military Members, 20 in 12, & "If you Don't get it, Live it!"

My mom asked me a bunch of questions regarding my new area.  I was transferred last Tuesday to Fort Brag, Fayetteville, so I thought I would answer them for all of you in the blog.

1. My companion and I do not live on the base of Fort Brag, but we live basically a mile away from a gate. I got a nice 3 month pass, and we can go on and off as we please. The ward we cover is completely on Fort brag, however the YSA is a double stake combined branch, which covers all of Fayettville west, and the Fayettville stakes.  We drive a nice Jetta too!  Too much fun switching to a manual  ;))

2. My new companion's name is Elder Holt! I love him to death... Haha.   We are two peas in a pod! We're already best friends! A couple times we've looked at each other and wondered... "Have we really been together only less than a week?"  We're the answer to each other's prayers. We're ready to help this zone catch on serious fire! He's got a goal of 20 baptisms in 12 weeks and we're going to make it happen!  Two our already on our way!

3. My companion is from Nevada in a small town called Caliente. He says people there have gas cans they keep just for those people that drive through and get stuck... Haha   He's so great.  I'll have to send some pictures/ take some soon!

4. Yes, I'm still a zone leader, but just over a different zone now. Just to quickly break up the leadership, (Remember every missionary is equally effective and important wherever he serves! Some just need a bit more accountability so they give them more stuff to do ;)) President - 2 assistants - 12 zone leaders - about 20 district leaders - a bunch of trainers - senior companions - junior companions.

5. Man I love the ward here! These people are so dedicated and sacrifice so much... I can't imagine what these families go through having their husbands constantly deploy... They're some of the strongest people that I've met! They're incredible! The relief society president gave a talk on Sunday, (Sister Horn, she's great! I've been mauled by her wonderful children!) She spoke about how she was pregnant, and was called to be the relief society president, all right before her husband was deployed... She's a tank. All of the families we've been to are just incredible, fantastic members that are so structured, disciplined, and just good, friendly people. I'm so spoiled to serve here! It's way too much fun!

6. I've tried to convince my companion to sing a duet w/ me in sacrament meeting, and I think I'm just going to go and tell them we'd like to sing one of these times and just see what happens... -_- I've picked up singing btw... and I get a chance to play the piano every morning at the church before exercise. I'm taking full advantage of all the time I have to make the most out of it!

7.  We have some great investigators.  We're teaching a girl.  (I guess this happened right before I got here.  They set up a booth at a college campus to talk to some people).  She came to church!  We taught her briefly after sacrament meeting, and she said she was really touched by Moroni 10:32-33 and enjoyed church a lot!  We're seeing her tonight at a huge YSA (Young Single Adult),  activity at the stake president's house.)
We're also teaching a great, skinny, Samoan.   He's been a member all his life, yet never got baptized... So that's been really good to teach him! 

8. (A side note...).  On Fort Brag, we're not allowed to proselyte at all on base, so we have to work only by referrals and less active members. It's a whole different ball game, but it's a lot of fun!  We get to work really closely with a lot of members, and they instantly know what's going on and how to be great missionaries. These people are the professionals at putting cookies on your neighbor's porch, and other co-op missions.

9. Another experience I had this week was pretty revealing, and a little crazy.... I was on an exchange with our ward mission leader, while my companion was at the temple with a convert of his.  We went to go and teach this less active member who hadn't been to church in a while... We started to talk about his daily scripture reading, and we cut to the chase. I asked him why he wouldn't be able to read the Book of Mormon on a daily basis?  He was training to be a green beret, and we met in his small little barrack.  He answered my question and he said,  "Alright, but I just don't believe that the church is true anymore. Great this, great that, but I don't believe."  We went deeper and asked, "Why not?" He went on to talk about how he believes that the word of wisdom is something that is completely off in it's course. He made a great argument, and brought up strong reasons, in which the member I was with began to spew off reasons why it was made.  How it was a law of the church for luxury, to look better in the public eye to get some money, and some also, great sounding reasons. The spirit was strong as I felt the need to testify that all of these things do NOT matter...  I told him it is having faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and his gospel, his revelation in which he's given us today. That is all. If Christ tells us through his prophet to jump on one leg heading towards our car on Tuesdays, you better believe I'll be doing it! Not because it makes sense to me, but because he said so, and, "His ways are not my ways" and his love is deeper than mine. It was sad to see after all of this, with a full understanding of faith, that he still held to his view of the word of wisdom. I admonished him to search for what he thought was truth, and told him, that if he read the Book of Mormon just ten minutes a day, he'd receive the answer he was looking for. He agreed. He said that we'd been pretty honest and blunt with him.  I told him that if I didn't know that it was true, than I wouldn't be so persistent, and probably wouldn't care as much. That helped him out a bit.   Great lesson!  A great testimony builder of my faith in Christ, showing us that,  "if you don't get it, live it, and it'll come, but only after you live it."  (John7:17).

Well,  time's up...  Good week  though...I love you all!!!!!  Stay strong in the faith, and act!!!
Love,  Elder Langford

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