Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Week 69

Hey there y'all! It's been another great week here in the fabulous state of Texas! We had a lot of success this week and are working hard to find new people to teach and help them get baptized!
This last week we saw Mikey and the gang and taught about 8 or 9 lessons just with his family (sister, sister-in-law, etc). It was pretty crazy. Last week I mentioned that he was still living together with his girlfriend and the baptism would have to be postponed. We have decided that we will need to postpone it indefinitely until he can find a place to live. Once he does that, we'll set the baptism and get him going. We are excited for him because he is still coming to church and loves learning but he simply needs to move out now.
Luis and Tiffany are getting married this weekend! We are so excited for them. We also talked about the baptism with them. Because they are living together, they are committing sin. There has to be time for repentance and because Tiffany is a member, she may take more time. So we have decided to delay the baptism until they are both more on the same page. It is interesting; Elder Mosca and I learned a lot about keys of the Priesthood this week. Ultimately, with Luis, it is really up to us when he gets baptized because President Smith holds the keys, but with Tiffany, that lies with the Bishop. So we are going to pray about it, but it is likely that Luis will not get baptized until he and Tiffany are on the same plane spiritually. It was incredible to tell them that last night because they were totally cool with it, which is a testimony to me that they are prepared spiritually.
Darian is doing well. She didn't come to church yesterday, but we had a really powerful lesson with her last night about the Restoration. At the end of the lesson, we talked about how answers come from the Holy Ghost and asked Nicole and Sydney how they felt when they received their answer from the Holy Ghost. They bore their testimonies and the Spirit was thick (I could have cut it with a knife). I was speechless and the Holy Ghost bore witness to our hearts. She knows what she needs to do to really know if this is what she wants, and so she will have read some of the Book of Mormon and prayed about it to know that it is true before we come back tomorrow. It should be a good lesson tomorrow.
Other than that, we don't really have anyone progressing. Like I said earlier, we are working on getting more investigators (we found a big ol' 0 this week) and then helping them to progress. So I'll keep you posted.
Other than that, there is not too much going on besides the fact that Elder Mosca and I get to be the Chili Judges for the 3rd ward Trunk or Treat! Needless to say, we are looking forward to it.
That's really it for this week. I hope y'all have a wonderful week!
Elder Grondel

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Week 68

Hey there y'all!! It's been another wonderful week here in Frisco! It's still weird to think that I'm back here even though I've been here for about 2 months already. I have loved it and time has gone by faster than I ever would have imagined here. But anyways, this week went really well. We taught a bunch of lessons this week and had a good time.

Mikey is still doing well, but we are struggling for a place for him to live. Of course, we can't do it for him and he doesn't know anyone that can take him in, so we are working on finding people who may be renting out rooms or cheap apartments. He said he'll sleep in a tent, but we don't want him to do that. He's doing great though. He wants to go just about everywhere with us; we've taken him to appointments, dinners, etc. The problem is that we can't give him a ride in our car (it's one of the rules for liability or something in the insurance) so I've let him borrow my bike a couple times :) It's been a lot of fun.

Luis and Tiffany are doing good, but we may need to work something out with their baptism because they are living together and are not married. We can't really marry them and then Luis gets baptized 3 hours later. So we are working on that; otherwise they are doing well also.

Darien is awesome. She is loving seminary, loves Sydney and Nicole, and loves us! She has been given permission by her mom to attend seminary for the rest of the year and, if she wants, to get baptized as well. We are REALLY excited about that but Mom and Dad aren't together in her house, so we will need to talk to Dad as well. She watched conference a couple weeks ago and really enjoyed it. We will be seeing her tomorrow and will hopefully teach the Restoration to help her understand a little better about where Joseph Smith fits into the picture. We talked about it briefly last Tuesday, but we didn't have a lot of time so we weren't really able to lay the foundation of God's love and prophets and the Apostasy.

This week we did not talk to a lot of people and so we didn't find a whole lot of new investigators and some of the ones we do have are not really progressing, so it's back to the blacktop. We're doing lots of finding this week and are really going to focus on part-member families as well. It's really awesome to be able to complete a family in the gospel and if they were less active before to bring them back to the light. I think of the parable Christ taught about the sheep and the shepherd:
4. What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine ain the wilderness, and go after that which is blost, until he find it UAdd a Note

5. And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.

6. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

7. I say unto you, that likewise ajoy shall be in heaven over one bsinner that crepenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance. (Luke 15:4-7)
I feel very much the same way about many of those that I teach. I truly learn and grow to love these people. I love this work and hope to better myself each day.

I love y'all and miss y'all and hope everything is going well for you!!


Elder Grondel

Week 67

Hey there y'all!! It's been another great week here in Texas! As I said last week, it's finally cooling down and it is beautiful! This last week temperatures were mostly in the high 70's and now in the mornings is it usually below 60 when we wake up to run (it's really nice, but I've got to wear a sweater). I can't believe it's October already (I hit 16 months yesterday) but I am excited for the fall weather and colors and thankfully I'm in a car this time (hopefully I haven't spoken too soon--I may get transferred in 5 weeks).
Anyways this week was really good. We taught a lot of lessons and most importantly, it was General Conference! It was so good and I got so much out of it. Some of my favorite talks were Elder Costa's on Prophets, President Uchtdorf's on pride (priesthood session), and President Monson's on gratitude. They were all wonderful and I can't wait for them to be printed in next month's Ensign.
Mikey is doing well. He hasn't smoked in a couple of days and he is reading, but he is still living with his girlfriend. We need to get him moved out this week or we will have to push the date back, but hopefully that will not have to happen. It will be interesting to see how things progress, so until then we are going to have faith that all things will work out for our good as we help him and as he keeps his commitments.
Luis and Tiffany are doing well also. They are excited to get married and Luis is excited to get baptized. No major concerns there; just waiting for the 23rd now.
We have a couple recent converts that are way awesome and are doing their missionary work, too. Nicole and Sydney were baptized in July. They are 14 and 12 and their mom was less active, but we reactivated them and now they are loving church and everything that goes with it. Nicole is a freshman in high school and is on the tennis team and has a friend name Darian. Darian was curious about the church (particularly seminary and wanted to go to see what it was like). So we went over the night before because we had an appointment set up with the girls before hand and met Darian. She is really nice and wants to get back on the path with God. She doesn't have a really string religious background, and later that week Elder Mosca went over on splits with the Elders Quorum and had a really good lesson with her. She LOVED seminary and has gone every day since Wednesday. It is so amazing to see how the Lord provides for us! We will be going to have dinner with the family and Darian should be there so we will hopefully teach her there as well. Maybe we can get the parents involved as well; that would be awesome.
This weekend I really had some soul searching. Not that I've done anything terrible, but there are definitely things I can work on. I looked over my patriarchal blessing for the first time in a few months I'm sad to say, and there were things in there that I know I can use the general conference we just had to help me out in developing certain attributes. Patience and humility have always been a problem for me, so I am hoping to be able to make those strengths. As it says in Ether 12:27:
And if men come unto me I will show unto them their aweakness. I bgive unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my cgrace is sufficient for all men that dhumble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make eweak things become strong unto them.
So hopefully I can work on that.
I love y'all and miss y'all and hope y'all have a great week!!!
Elder Grondel