Monday, February 11, 2013

I Can't believe I'm 21

It's pretty weird to think I'm 21 now! I definitely don't feel it. We didn't really do anything because I intentionally didn't tell anyone. I just wanted to do missionary work. So, we just taught lessons all night, went to a soup kitchen in the afternoon, and did planning in the morning. Unfortunately, i didn't stay completely under the radar. One of the office couples- the Davis's- was up in Waterville doing car registration and took me out to Big G's for breakfast, and got me a little cake. So I did have a little celebration, but most of the day was just focused on my purpose, and I wouldn't have had it any other way! I did have a real epiphany in a lesson on my birthday. We were discussing with a less-active how the gospel blesses families. He talked about how people raised Mormon have less desire to smoke and drink and all that. Then it hit me. If I weren't a member of the church, and knowing my personality, I'd probably would have been in a bar with a bunch of my buddies that night. But instead, I was teaching a man how to come closer to Christ. I couldn't help but to smile as I realized just how much the gospel has blessed my life. So. now for the work. Things have been going CRAZY awesome. I've been working hard to stay just as busy as I was as an assistant, and we've been pretty close to pulling it off. We found 7 new investigators and taught 18 lessons, which was pretty cool since we only taught 12 last week. And this next week, we already have 20 lessons lined up and have 2 full days unplanned. My goal is to hit 30 lessons in a week. I've never been able to pull that one off, but it's my goal. So the area is really growing fast. We have a system we came up with, and it's working really well. We came up with a new years message using Genesis 19;17 when the Lord tells Lot and his family to "look not behind thee," to flee from Sodom and Gamorah and to head to the mountains. We then talk about how God has issued the same commandment to us- to identify the worldly sins in our lives, to leave them behind without looking back, and to 'ascent the mountain' which, biblically, represents the place where one would go to be close to God. So, in other words, identifying things we can do to grow closer to him. After we taught that, we issued an invitation to learn the lessons as a way of ascending that mountain. We've been sharing it primarily with less-actives and a few non-members, and not a single person has said no. So, we're not re-teaching the lessons to a pool of about 15 less-actives who need a better gospel base. The ward is fully behind it too, and they're getting pretty excited. We've had some good results too. Yesterday at church, we had 6 less-actives there. I'm really excited to see what we can get on week 6 of the transfer! Another bunch of cool things happened too. I have an update on all the recent converts who have gone less-active. We finally got in with Tammy and her new fiance, and had a lesson yesterday. Her husband said he's more than willing to have us come over and teach them, which was what kept Tammy from meeting with us. So we're going to be able to hopefully build her faith back up. A member of the ward we're pretty tight with- Sis. Proctor- got a call from Sherry and Roger Googe down in Mississippi. We hooked them up with the missionaries down there when they moved, and I guess they have been meeting with them and are contemplating going back to the church! So that was pretty good news. Sister Gresgott was one of the less-actives who came to church, so she's back on board, and committed to take a big step in getting to the temple in a few months. So, with all that, all of the converts I worked with when I was here last year are accounted for, and will hopefully stick around this time!! That's most of the word this week. We're just working super hard and as fast as we can. I know time is short, but you better believe I'm leaving everything on the alter. I want an ambulance to need to pick me up from the airport. There'll be little chunks for Elder Esplin on this town from both of us. Hmm. That was supposed to sound motivational. I don't know if it was. Anyways, we're both excited, and we expect great things out of the next month! Love you all! Have a great week, and I"ll look forward to hearing from you soon!! -Faithfully, Elder KC Esplin

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