Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year from Elder Dickson!

I can't believe another year has come and gone!

Hey, y'all!
Hope y'all had a very merry Christmas! It was terrific seeing everyone on the computer, Devin looks taller and sounds older every time...The tricky thing with Skype (as we discovered) is that everyone wants to talk at once; I guess we have a system for next time in taking turns like we did on Christmas. I felt a lot more relaxed talking to y'all then last Christmas for sure, though it still took me a second to remember how to talk to everyone lol. It gets to a point to where I don't know what to say or ask since the e-mails have worked out pretty well, and I have forgotten how to interact with ya. I'll be quite the weirdie when I get home lol...
Anyway, thanks for being the awesomest family anyone could get at a reasonable price (just kidding; you don't put a price on family). Too bad about Aunt Nina, is she doing okay? She's in my prayers every night, as is the rest of y'all, but the focus is on her...
Did you guys get to open the package at the Jensen's yet (Say hi to them for me!)? How'd you like them? Christmas shopping is always difficult for me, I have no shopping or gift wrapping talent...
Our Christmas was pretty good; we got up pretty early and opened our gifts; thanks so much! I got everything I needed and them some; I wear the Star Wars shirt every night to bed, and those shoes were a tremendous help! Then we skyped at the Poulters (they had many laptops and desktops for us to use, so we all got to Skype at once), then went to the Macks for dinner and board games. The Macks are pretty awesome; they have two sons on missions now, and a daughter who is one of the funniest people I have met lol. We had ham and all that good stuff, and I took a Christmas nap (it felt soooo great lol). Then we ended with some beautiful looking and tasting hot chocolate and cookies by yours truly. Overall, a pretty good day.
So what is everyone up to? When everyone gets settled, I wanna hear all the adventures y'all are having...
Oh, I found out Friday night that one of the people I was teaching in Jackson was getting baptized on Saturday! It blew my mind! Author Price a.k.a. Blue finally kicked smoking and got dunked by Bro. Vanhoy (Elder's Quorum President). Thanks to Elder "I" and his new companion, as well as God, for getting that accomplished. It made me pretty happy even though I couldn't go see it (it was too far, and I was notified too late...).
Went on exchange with Elder Larsen, Elder Everett's greenie, on Wednesday after district meeting (we had it on Wednesday because Christmas was a Tuesday), which was good; he got a flat tire almost as soon as we stepped outside. Someone obviously didn't want us to work that day lol, but we went out anyway and just walked around. Had dinner with the Koch's, one of my favorite families here; she is a sweet lady, a single mom with funny kids who feeds us almost weekly, and we love her for it.
Thursday we finally got a hold of a referral we have been trying to see for a few weeks; he knows a kid in our ward and wants to get right with God, so we'll see how it goes. Baptize!
Sunday was alright; all our gators were gone for the holidays, so it was just us and some less-actives in Gospel Principles. In Sacrament, the young man assigned to give a talk didn't show up, and the deacon's president bore his testimony; how embarrassing...
The Priest's Quorum is always my favorite; the kids are fun and the leaders are cool, and they usually have some pretty spiritual lessons in there; this time we talked about extending invitations to make commitments as missionaries. It's the most important part of the work, otherwise nothing gets done!
The rest of this week was a bit of a drag; the holidays kept everyone busy except for us lol. All our gators were out of town or state, and no one was outside besides us because it was too cold; I love this gospel. Why else would I bike in 18 degree weather (wind chill included) with no one around to share a message people think they don't want to hear unless I knew it was what God needed me to do, and that I knew that this Church is the only true church on the face of the earth, with His Authority and His authorized servants leading it? Why would I be in Georgia of all places, postponing school and dating and such to get bashed and ignored and yet love the people here and desire their salvation unless I was dedicated to do the will of the Lord? I has been hard (especially the loving my neighbor part), and I have wondered what is the point, why am I even out here, and feeling like I am not accomplishing anything. Then moments like Keya's baptism, like hearing a less-active decide to turn his life around, like seeing a elderly woman smile because she got a visit from the elders, like hearing about Author's baptism the other day; those make it all worth while. Especially in Jackson, I felt like there was no one there to teach or baptize, and that I was wasting my time. Now we see the fruits; all credit for Author's baptism goes to the Lord, of course, but it just showed me that even if you can't see immediate results in the work, we have no idea what influence we have on someone to make a decision in the future and such. It took 7 or so months for Author to get baptized, and it was definitely worth all the empty days and long hours I spent there. This church is so true; how can it not be? I love my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ, and I do this for them. Amen. 
I love y'all so much and hope all your wildest dreams will come true! Take Luck! 

Elder Casey Guy Dickson 

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Casey Guy Dickson

Casey Guy Dickson
Called to serve in the Georgia Atlanta North Mission (July 2011 to July 2013)