This Easter weekend was a lot of fun. We even got to go over to a member's home for an easter egg hunt! and we got a ton, and I mean way too much chocolate from a bunch of differernt members. Yesterday we even had two dinners. I don't really feel like ever eating or thinking about food again. Our first dinner was a big ham dinner with potatoes and the whole lot. They offered us seconds and my comp was quick to say no, which meant I had to take seconds. So I did while crying knowing that I was going to eat again in like 30 minutes. We traveled to our next dinner which was at a Filipino house and they said they made a lot of turkey for us... I about peed my pants. So we got a little bit of food and spread it on the plate to make it look like we had more and we ate very slowly. Then the husband was like oh, come on elders have some more, so we did and again he said, come on elder, we made this food for you. Eat more. so we said ok as a tear fell down my face. They of course knew that we had a dinner already so they were just having fun with us. Then they forced pumpkin pie down our throats and i was feeling good like ok I can make it through the night. but no, that's when they brought out the brownies... i cried myself to sleep haha. But it was good and we got leftovers so that was good even if I did gain like 10 pounds in one night.
But this area is really cool. We have some cool members with some interesting circumstances. One is a lady who we call grandma deni and she is blind. but she is so up beat and loves to have us over. She even pays for our lunch once a week. Then there is Russel. he is a less accountable guy who is so much fun to be around. He writes all the missionaries after they leave the area.
We also get to go to a place called Hudson's Hope which is an hour away and in our area. We have less actives and members there. We also were able to pick up two new investigators. They were a referral from a member and they are super interested. Weird how things happen when members get involved. That's one of the reasons that this area is a stark contrast from my last. So keep going right along and doing missionary work, because that's the only way that the work is going to be hastened.
So, I really like my new area. Just saying. We actually have people to teach and the members are involved! Weird how they go hand in hand eh? But moving really does suck. so much packing and trying to make everything fit. I have come to the realization that you aquire a lot of crap on the mish. Plus I am going to miss my buddies from my last area and it was a gong show getting up here with the 7 1/2 hour drive. But it is worth it. This area is the land of milk and honey! Even with all the weird people here!
I am serving in a ward and very small ysa, so we get to go to activities for both. and the weird people, well they come from the ysa, but you learn to love them anyway eh? If not than it is not going to be anyfun. But I am excited for the time I have here. We have a pretty full schedule of lessons pretty much everyday and we have a lot of progressing investigators that actually enjoy meeting with us. We met with one girl the other day and her family and they want us to teach her 3 times a week! we were like ummm yeah that sounds great! So this area is doing realy well. I even have a first cousin once removed or something like that up here. He came up to me and told that he was my mom's cousin. So that's weird. Guess I can't mess around now eh?
This week I had some pretty good studies, even with all the packing and unpacking and what not. I read in 1 Nephi about the Liahona and something really stood out to me. It talked about how the liahona only worked according to the faith and diligence of the people using it. it didnt say it worked according to the faith of lehi only, or nephi only, but all the people. That means that Laman and Lemuel did have faith in God at one point. That goes to show that we have to constantly be nourishing and exercising our faith in order to keep it. If you don't do the little things like reading the scriptures, praying, going to church, etc., you are going to lose it. It's like teeth, if you ignore it, it will go away. I also like the part in preach my gospel about bearing testimony often. It wasn't anything new that I learned, just re-emphasizing this point. The testimony won't have any power if it doesnt come from the heart, even with whatever volume of voice you want. It comes from the conviction of your heart. I thought about how Elder Holland gets pretty loud sometimes, but when he does, so does his conviction. So I just thought that was pretty cool.
Quote of the week comes from a kid named Colby, who is in YSA. We were eating at a restaurant and me and my comp got the hot wings. He went on to say" Oh I could do that." and then in a robotic voice, he said "Come. at. me. bro........challenge.accepted." and then he said "but I'm getting the steak bites." hhaha good times up in the middle of no where!
If anyone would like to send me a parcel of any sorts, send it to #308 9115 93A St. Fort Saint John, B.C. V1J5V4 Canada
Thanks for all the birthday wishes, those of you that sent them.
Keep it real,
The Harveys - Brother Harvey is a boss! One of the only people up here who is a Lakers fan.
Finally my time is up in Meadows and I'm getting transferred to Ft. St. John in British Colombia! I'm super stoked especially since they have like 12 investigators and 9 of them going to church. My new comp is Elder Merkely and he lived in the same apartment complex as me for 3 months and he is super chill. Plus I get to see my trainer once a month and Zone Training Meetings! So I'm super excited. Great Birthday gift. Weird to think that Elder Russo( that feels weird to say) will have been out for 6 months on Wednesday! Crazy! But I have learned a lot from this area that I will share later.
General Conference was sooooo good! I was pondering why I loved it so much, and what I came up with is that we didn't have to go tracting... haha jk thats not all. I guess as a missionary we are just more focused. Because never before did I sit there for every single session and enjoy it like I did this weekend. I'd share my favorite talk with you and why but that's just simply impossible because I like a lot. I really enjoyed Elders Holland, Anderson, Eyring (as well as priesthood) Nelson, Oaks priesthood (because he just threw down!) Hallstrom, Uchtdorf(as well as priesthood) Monson(as well as priesthood), Ballard, Bednar, Christofferson( who is coming to the millwoods stake which I am now leaving...) so yeah I really like a lot of them and it would be too hard to pick a favorite.
But since I am leaving my greenie area, I'll share what I learned here. Basically in a nut shell, I learned hard work pays off. We had an area with well off people who most were east Indian and didn't speak great English but we were still able to teach some and fill our day with meaningful activities. I also learned that east Indians are really nice people. sure they don't speak our language but that doesn't mean they aren't human, they are just different and have a different culture. I also learned that if Our Purpose is at the center of our hearts each and everyday, there will never, be a bad day. As we focus on those we have been called to serve, we will enjoy each and every moment.
And there was another funny quote from Elder Ripley this week, likely the last of the companionship. We were at the English family's home that we moved in and the dad was going to take a shower. He was complaining about the loose bolts on the shower door and then was closing the door when Elder Ripley said and this is all he said, "Let me know if you need anything, I love to do that sort of thing" Let me reiterate that was said as the door was being closed to take a shower. Wrong timing my friend haha. The rest of the family was cracking up for a good 5 minutes. One comment was "What, are you gonna get his backside too" haha good times. But, those sorta things happen to the best of us.
Well my time In Meadows has come to an end and I am excited to start my new adventure in British Columbia! Hope all is going well wherever you are!
It may not feel like it anymore, but spring has hit. This week was filled with service helping people move. We really didn't do any missionary work on the weekend because we were moving people all day. But hey we got $50 out of it and it was good enough service that we slept real good. I also will try to stay away from Uhaul if I ever move because each Uhaul truck of the families that we moved in broke down. It was really fun though meeting new people in our ward, and saying goodbye to those leaving.
This week two brethren from the missionary dept. came up and there was a long meeting, so one from each companionship went. I didn't have to go thank goodness, so I got to be in a tripan with Elder Bowles, and Elder Rivers. We had to take in a car to the Subaru dealership in the west end so we went to the west Edmonton mall for lunch. That place is massive! But as big as it is, I really wasn't all that impressed. But it was fun to see all the different people on the bus, and we met a crazy guy who thoght he was the Aaron in the BOM index. But nothing exciting came from that meeting. We won't be getting ipads for at least another year and a half and facebook for another couple of months, so it is back to tracting. But tracting does teach you valuable life experiences. We went tracting and knocked 46 doors in an hour and a half and only 6 answered. Not one was even remotely interested. This area has taught me to be persistent and faithful and to never get discouraged.
With all the East Indians here, I've tried to look at it from their point of view, and it has really helped. We taught one this past week and she had a really great belief in Christ. She told us how they move here and had little to no family and absolutely no friends. and when they got here her husband was laid off so it was really hard. But they stuck it out, because they knew life here was better than where they were. I linked that to Lehi and how they left Jerusalem. It was extremely hard, but they knew what they needed to do, and relied on Christ.
Quote of the week doesn't come from anything that happened this week, but from Elder Holland. He says, "We look back to claim the embers from glowing experiences but not the ashes. And when we have learned what we need to learn and have brought with us the best that we have experienced, then we look ahead and remember that faith is always pointed towards the future." It reminded me of the quote "time spent dwelling on the past, is time wasted." We need to look toward to the future with faith and with the knowledge of our past experiences, but not with the baggage of past experiences. Learn and move on and things will improve.