So I'm sorry that the one week you're all rushing to write me in time, I write about an hour later than usual. Sorry, Sister Casner and I were having a little too much fun making a scripture chain for a less active family and our companion study went long this morning. But I'm glad I pulled you all out of bed!
This was my week of service in Bowmanville. We spent almost 3 hours one day pulling up an overgrown garden for a less active woman who's son died recently, 2 hours helping a member family prepare their garden in the back, and 2 hours picking up sticks from the yard of an old woman who's neighbors with a member family. So I guess I shouldn't complain about the cold, because at least I'm not all sunburned or anything. My hands were swollen this weekend from it though, I got a little carried away with the hoe in one of the gardens. Highlight of the service: I moved a big log at one point, and the guy directing me said "The wasn't enough, let me fix it for you." Then he walked over, looked at it, and said "Never mind, that's perfect. You're awesome." I now feel justified in telling Sister Casner at least twice a day that I'm perfect.
So Kathy, the world's most perfect investigator, is amazing as usual. We're coming up with games and activities to do for all of her lessons, so my creativity is definitely blooming in this area (mostly thanks to Sister Casner, who gets super creative with all of her lessons anyways). She's really excited about being baptized on May 13, so we're praying that she continues to do exactly what she's doing! Unfortunately we weren't able to teach our family, Adam and Tasha, this week, but we did see them and they said they were coming to church and were really touched by our first visit. Unfortunately, she then got really sick so they couldn't come. So we're waiting another week to see them, which is always scary but we're excited to teach them more. We also found 2 new people to teach, a father and a son. The dad is a former investigator that we dropped by who was sitting on the porch with his son and let us sit down and talk to them about the Book of Mormon. His son had some really awesome questions, about why we had the Book of Mormon and how it went together with the Bible. We left them a Book of Mormon to read and are going back this weekend. We aren't positive how interested the dad is- he's catholic and seems pretty comfortable with his beliefs- but the son said that he considers himself mostly Catholic but wants to learn about other religions and figure out what he really believes, so he seems very genuinely open to learning.
We had interviews with the mission president and skills training with the zone this week, which is always awesome. There's these 5 things President Scott has been asking us to do, I don't remember if I told you about them or not, but we practiced those and talked about how they're important. My favorite one is probably saying a kneeling prayer at the beginning and end of a lesson every time. We had an awesome experience with our investigator Gloria this week with that. She's been in touch with missionaries for over 6 months at this point, and she's always refused to say a prayer with them. So we've been kneeling during the opening and closing prayer every time we've seen her- she doesn't kneel with us, so it's kind of awkward, but she's been fine with us doing it. So this week without even asking, when we knelt she did too, which was AMAZING progress in our eyes. Then we asked her to say the closing prayer, as we always do, but we asked if she just wanted to start it- address Heavenly Father and say whatever comes to mind, but when she runs out of things to say let us know and we would continue and finish the prayer- and she AGREED! So she said probably one line and then asked us to take over, so all 3 of us said a few things and then we closed it. It was pretty awesome, and I absolutely believe the only reason she agreed to even try to pray was because she was on her knees. It's one of those principles I don't totally understand- to me a prayer should be a prayer no matter where or how you say it- but I'm definitely gaining a testimony of the power of a kneeling prayer, and ESPECIALLY of obedience. Do what your mission president says, no matter how unimportant it seems, and you'll see blessings. (Only sad part of this story is Gloria's phone was disconnected, so we have to just drop by now to catch her and we haven't seen her in almost a week now. But eventually we'll time it right!)
Sister Casner and I are at the point of our companionship where we can now read each other minds and finish each other's sentences. It's really useful in lessons, really creepy in real life. We no each other too well, she opened the car door the other day after backing me up and said "I could tell you were either singing or burping. I figured burping." She also has a hilarious habit of exaggerating/lying to me and then instantly calling herself out on it. After one of our gardening parties she told me "This is so nice. People don't garden in Nevada I'm such a liar, yes they do." I died laughing. So it makes me slightly hesitant about transfers because we're having a little too much fun, but thankfully I don't have to worry about that for another 3 weeks.
Basically Bowmanville is perfect, we're perfect, the work is perfect. That's pretty much my whole life.
Love y'all tons! Have fun in Utah Dad! Thanks as always for being such a faithful writer Mom and Melissa :) love you!