Wednesday, June 29, 2011

28 June 2011

Hi family!
It's been a good week. Lots and lots of dropped appointments, so not of lot of new stuff, but at least there are things to talk about.
Last Wednesday we helped Bro. Hartung cut down his giant tree in his back yard. It was the 2nd time we'd been over to help. He would go up in the tree, tie ropes to the trunk and branches, and then chainsaw the branches down. We would direct the branches down (as big as trees themselves), untie them, and cut them to pieces with our own chainsaws. It was really fun. I felt very manly with dirt, sweat, sap, and cuts all over me, not to mention we were manhandling a giant tree. On one of the branches though, the rope got caught around Brother Hartung's arm, and burned his arm really bad as the branch fell downward. When the rope ran out, the branch jerked, and the rope broke his arm, just above the wrist. But he didn't know it was broken yet, so he grunted in pain a little bit, then continued chainsawing. Later he tied a rope to the top of the tree, including about 8 branches, and down below we pulled and pulled and broke the top of the tree off. It was so cool.
Ceyda is back from base, and we were able to teach her and West once. We talked about baptism, and they seem pretty excited to do that. We are aiming for July 23rd. We only have a small window of time to do it, because they're going on pre-deployment leave from July 1-16, then he'll be deployed probably July 30 or 31st. So we only have about two weeks to teach them the 3rd lesson, and all of the commandments, have them interviewed, and baptized and confirmed. We're going to try to make it work. He's been getting off work really late recently, so it's been hard to meet with them. Ceyda will still be around, but West will be gone for a year on deployment. Hopefully it will work out. They both came to church on Sunday (West's 3rd time, Ceyda's first time) and really enjoyed it. Ceyda felt awkward in Relief Society because the women talked about not having more than one piercing, and Ceyda has two piercings. But we talked about it with her, and I don't think it'll be a problem.
Sunday, we had dinner with the Mataaliis (a less active/recent convert family we've been teaching) and West and Ceyda at the Mataaliis place. It was really good for all of them, they are good friends now. Mataaliis are also a young couple with a baby boy. That was our second dinner of the night. Earlier we ate with the Faleumu family. They are Samoan, and of course, require we eat a LOT of food. We had ribs, which were delicious. We ate a ton. Then after an appointment, had the other dinner with the Mataaliis and West and Ceyda. We were SO full by the end. Reminded me of Dad's story about eating the giant potatoes. Elder Fackrell didn't have breakfast the next day because he was still full when he woke up.
Found out that one of the priests in our ward was in the same prom group as me when I came down for the high school's prom last year. It was fun to see pictures of us all, before we knew each other!
Our other investigators are doing well. Andy Zinniger is a guy in his 40s that we've been teaching a little bit. He's been coming to church for a long time, his wife is a member. He even teaches nursery, even though he's not a member. He's a really nice guy, and I think he'll join the church within a few months. He hasn't been wanting to be pushed into baptism, but I think he'll join soon. We see him once a week.
We haven't seen Sheryl for a while, but we will help her with yard work again tomorrow and teach her tomorrow night.
Christian is doing pretty well. We've all been trying to figure out a way to help him read the scriptures every day. So far it's working! Tonight we're going to invite him and his family to go down to the temple and take a family picture in front of it.
Yesterday every companionship got a small DVD player, so we could watch the Preach My Gospel training videos in companionship study. I can definitely imagine some of the missionaries abusing those... Don't worry, I won't! Our mission president said he's already planning on some being taken away soon.
Yesterday while riding to see a referral, we were riding down a street with a couple houses on it. We talk to everyone we see on the streets and try to share the gospel. As I was about to pass one house, there was a car pulling into the driveway. I could have talked to them fairly easily, or I could have passed them up. For whatever reason, I decided to pass them up and keep riding. I immediately started feeling guilty, since I never have a problem talking to everyone. I decided to ignore my guilt because I was well past the house, and when I decided to ignore the feeling, my water bottle, full of cold water, somehow made its way out of its holder and fell out into the street and then rolled down an open drain. I was really thirsty, and I just watched my water roll down the drain. That definitely taught me a lesson! If you get a prompting from the Holy Ghost, you'd better follow it. That was a minor "punishment" but often the consequences are more severe if we ignore instruction from God because we're lazy.
I hope you are all well and happy! I hope you all keep in touch with each other. Family is so important, and the world doesn't understand that nearly as well as they need to. Don't take ours for granted.
Love you all
Elder Jon La Follette

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