Happy late Pioneer Day, everyone! Elder Smith and I had a pretty interesting week this week. Ok, maybe the whole week wasn't interesting, but there are a couple things I'd like to highlight.
When we got our car on Tuesday, it didn't have many miles left on it for us to use, so we've had to ration out driving and biking. Unfortunately, Elder Smith's tire popped on Friday, so that further pushed our traveling efforts back.
Over this past week, we've been attempting to contact former investigators that were in our area book. There hasn't been much success yet. People like to move around here, apparently. But it's good to clear up the area book, only so we can fill it up again.
Over this past week, I've really gotten close to two good friends that I have in West Memphis: Gene and Kattie. Gene's been investigating since last June, and Kattie was baptized in February. Not only have I seen them grow in the few months I've been here, but I've seen that the trials I've been experiencing have helped them conquer their own hardships.
On Saturday, Gene drove us to a state park for the branch's Pioneer Day party. Elder Smith and I competed in a three-legged race, and miraculously won. Later that evening, Gene drove us and Kattie to attend a large baptismal service being held in Memphis. Elder Smith and I had personally given the Memphis missionaries advice Tuesday on how to make baptismal services more spiritual and memorable. We attended the baptism to see how our words might have brought change, compared to a very small baptism we had seen a couple weeks before in the same building. There had only been a handful of people that saw the young man baptized, and the talks were geared towards what came hereafter.
What a change this time around! There were enough visitors to fill up half the chapel, and the talks made those getting baptized feel the blessing of what was going on. Of course, the attendance was attributed to the people being baptized. Ten people were baptized in that service.
As we were returning home, Gene treated us to a good dinner, and the four of us grew together in friendship. I might be on a mission, but that doesn't mean I need to be alone with my companion. Friends need to be found wherever you go, and they'll help you through the things that are near unbearable. Of course, the ultimate Friend we can rely on is Christ, but even Christ can be seen through others. I'm grateful for their presence in my life and the strength they've been to me.
This week will be referral-seeking and contacting. We'll be working to fill the area book back up, and getting to work. Keep us in your prayers, and we'll continue to bring others to the gospel.
OH! We also taught both the second AND third hours in church yesterday. We taught the third hour to the Priesthood and Relief Society about missionary work, and I felt the Spirit with me. It was a great experience. Anyway, I'll talk to you guys next week! Be safe! Love you, everyone!