|Elder Dickson, Elder Schmidt and the priest quorum in the John's Creek Ward.|
Hey, how y'all doin'? Happy Saint Pattie's Day yesterday! Happy Birthday, Grandpa!
So, transfer news, I'm going back to Conyers Inner, where I started my mission ... I'm not sure how I think about it. I mean, there are people there I miss and am excited about seeing, but I never saw much success there, and that's selfish of me, but I kinda put that area behind me. I'm going to be with Elder Kallon, who is pretty new and is from Africa, so he is still learning English (here we go again...) and Elder Schmidt is staying here and getting Elder Kilmer. This will be very interesting...
So this week:
Tuesday we had our Zone Training at our stake center, which was alright; I don't know why, but this zone training was just kinda blah; the best part was seeing Elder Ball and Elder Spear and all those guys! We had lunch at Olive Garden (I haven't eaten there for the longest time; I can't even remember the last time I ate there...). That night we had a split with the High Priests, which is always fun... we saw a member who is still potentially crazy, but less so than usual, so it wasn't so bad. Then we saw the guy with the robot again, and asked him to pray to see if God loves him. We hope to see him come soon.
Wednesday we had our apartment inspection (which we passed, don't worry, Mom lol), then we biked all day with minimal success, then had dinner with the Gunnels, a very fun young couple with hilarious kids! We had Spanish with us there, because the Gunnels knew ElderTarver from their old ward, before he left on his mission; crazy! Brother Gunnel also cut our for us; free haircuts!
Thursday we saw a less-active family, who are HUGE BYU fans; finally, my large reservoir of BYU football and basketball knowledge is getting me somewhere lol! Who says I know tons of useless information? I just used the talents God gave me to fellowship with a less-active, how cool is that? I was actually super nervous, since I don't really know the new stuff, but we had an hour long conversation about just BYU and Jimmer lol. Go Cougars!
Friday we spent a lot of time on the phone for weekly planning session; got a hold of some referrals and other 'gators who had recently been off the grid, so Elder Schmidt and his new comp. should be busy this next week. Then we played indoor soccer with the Spanish elders and their branch members; indoor soccer is so much more fun then regular soccer lol! I even scored a few times! Go me!
Saturday we taught Sam, the old man who knows everything, and yet nothing. We asked him if he knew God loved him; he was silent for a while, then shared with us a story of a son of a friend of his, who had polio, and how he overcome polio by prayer. He said he has had times in his life when he knew God loved him, but has never been certain. We ate lunch at this Italian restaurant, then went back to leave the Savior's Peace and Blessing in his home. As we finished, my companion shared a story about his many surgeries he has had, and how he used the Atonement to get relief from the pain, and he commissioned Sam to pray to see if God is there and if He loves him. He said that he would; it was the only time I have seen Sam quiet was during Elder Schmidt's testimony. He is making baby steps...
Sunday was really good, very eventful; Elder Schmidt and I got the chance to bless the sacrament (not because of the lack of priests, the ward has so many; it was because we asked if we could); I miss getting the chance to help stand in the Savior's place and offer a prayer to be able to provide the congregation with the remission of sins. It is a much bigger deal than I realized as a youth, and I really enjoyed doing it this past Sunday.
We had a good lesson in Gospel Principles; Brother Gunnel brought a friend to church, and she loved every minute of it! We taught her the first lesson, and she asked for a Book of Mormon (she promised to read it in two days; nice!). She made awesome comments in class, and had a ton of fun in relief society, so we are trying to get over to her house, Brother Gunnel is going to set that up for us.
Priest's quorum was good as always; the picture is of those guys. I hope they all go on missions, they can do some spectacular things with the Lord's help. They are a good group of boys...
After church we went over to our Ward Mission Leader's house for a correlation meeting, then went with an 18-year-old elder waiting to go into the MTC with us to go teach Desire, a man from the Ivory Coast of Africa. It was difficult to understand him, but we had a good lesson, and left him with a BoM, which we said he would read, and wanted us to come back next Sunday. Nice!
Then we went over to the McGuires for a traditional Irish meal, corn beef and cabbage, which was really good! You guys are going to be surprised what I eat now lol; even salad is starting to taste good! Brother McGuire then took us to Brother Lakips again to have a lesson with a Part-member family from Russia, and their Inactive daughter. At first, there was a bit of arguing about prayer and God having a body, which Igor (the husband) and the daughter was against. We both bore very solemn testimony, and we saw the spirit carry it to their hearts; by the end, they were speechless. It was cool to see the change that took place when we started to testify instead of debate.
I hope they will take up the challenge we have been leaving with everyone recently, about praying to God to see if He is there and if He loves them; I ask all who read this to try this for themselves; we may know that God loves us, but I don't think I have ever asked. I have recently, and a warm feeling washed over me and I felt like I could baptize the world; with God's help and strength, I feel like I can not only finish my mission strong, but to go out with a bigger bang than I came in (which I get the chance to do, since I'm going back to my first area lol). I again ask you all to ask God if He is there and if He loves you, and I promise He will answer, and that answer will give you more comfort and peace and strength than you can possibly imagine. I know that God lives and loves us, and so does His Son, our Elder Brother, Jesus Christ; they love us with a love that is perfect and want to give us the peace that this world can't provide us, even if it wanted to. I know this church is true; how can it not be? I know that prayer is God's way of staying in touch with His kids who are far from home, so that we can stay as close to Him as we can. I know that the scriptures our a way that God speaks to us, and they have the Words of Life. I say this in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Thanks so much for being the best family in the world! You guys rock! I love y'all so much, write me please!
Elder Casey Guy Dickson