This blog chronicles Matthew Staib's progress as he serves an LDS mission over the course of twenty-four months.

You can also read his personal blog at different, defined.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Busy Week in Our Area


Wednesday, we went to see Gladys Knight and the Pi- I mean, Saints Unified Voices choir. It was really good! Several people "caught the Spirit", I'm sure, and it was a jolly good time. The first song they sang began kinda quiet and slow, with a bit of an African-American vibe, then suddenly an old white guy stood up in the back and started cooing out soul music like he was an African brotha. It was so unexpectedly entertaining. All of the music was energetic and we got to clap along. A couple speakers talked about the apostasy, and how this is Christ's church on the earth again. Gladys and her husband bore their testimonies towards the end. We'll be talking to the guests this week that came down from Pocahontas to see the show.

On Friday, the branch planned to have a camp out to celebrate Aaronic Priesthood Restoration Day, but the weather said there was a 10% chance of rain, so it got cancelled. Ray was really looking forward to it because he loves to fish, so we took time that evening to fish with Ray. Ray caught 4 small catfish. Elder Talbert caught 2 big catfish. I was reeling in my line and happened to notice a tiny perch on the end of it. LAME.

On Saturday, because of recent rainstorms, the river we planned to have the baptism in flooded. Ray's baptism has been pushed to June 1st (he has a family reunion this weekend), but the situation is still the same. I'll still have a river baptism. Ray will still become a member. And we'll all be happy in the end. Ray is very eager to be at church every week. He loves the spirit he feels there and learns a lot. He always comes up with a couple good questions about what he's learned, and we're happy to answer him. His mom is coming along, too. She'll just need a bit more of a conviction, is all. I can see Ray being able to baptize her, too.

So instead of having a river baptism Saturday, we went down to Memphis to listen to Elder Suarez of the Presidency of the Seventy. He spoke about how we need to do our effort as missionaries, AND THEN ask God to step in. He shared the story of the brother of Jared, and how God didn't just give him the answers as far as finding light for their ships. The brother of Jared had to think it out, take the effort to molten out the rocks, and then asked God to fill the rocks with light. So our investigators are like those rocks. It was a cool way to look at that story I never thought of before.

On Sunday, both Elder Talbert and I gave talks on D&C 88:118. He spoke more about teaching others, and I spoke about applying wisdom. I hope our talks were able to influence others to act more instead of doing the same thing. Of course, that applies to me as well. I need to break out of my shell. I need to do the things I really don't like doing as a missionary just because it's what God wants me to do.

On a spiritual note, I've recently been reading the missionary story of Ammon and his brothers in Alma 16 and so on, and I've been able to draw a ton of parallels to the way we do missionary service today. One cool thing I noticed was this: read Ammon's way of teaching King Lamoni, and then read Aaron's way of teaching Lamoni's father. IT'S EXACTLY THE SAME, with some slight deviations only on the part of each individual asking questions important to their needs. I thought that was really cool.

Transfers are...2 weeks from now? Man, it's gone by fast. We honestly don't know what transfers will be like, but we know this much: Elder Talbert will be training in July. That could mean, we stay together another transfer and then I leave, or he could leave the area this transfer and I'll be here for a while. We'll see.

Love y'all! I keep you in my prayers, and I hope everyone has a safe and good beginning to summer!

-Elder Staib

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