Well here is another installment into the life of Elder Payne. It is crazy to think I will only be writing three more of these after this. WEIRD! Anywho things out here in good ole' California are great. We had a fantastic week this past week and were able to see a lot of miracles.
I will try and answer some of the questions that you had. So things with Elder Stein are great. He is a great comp and definitely knows his stuff very well. We have been wondering why it is that they
downsized the ward and I think it is because we only had about 5 Elders come into the mission and a pretty good size group go home. So they just didn't have the personnel to fill back in. We are pretty sure that they will push it back out again sometime soon. With the organizing thing if you want to you can go through some of my stuff. You don't have to do the whole thing though I can do that when I get back. A question I have for you is do you want me to try and bring the mattress pad back, it is getting pretty old, same thing with the pillow. I have talked with Lindsay and she is going to pick up some of my stuff at the mission office sometime in the coming weeks. Also Linds if you can get my bike and one other little box plus a grey tote that would be great, thank you!
I guess I will start out with the good news because I usually save that for later on in the email but I guess I can do that now. So I dont know what you guys were praying for back there or how you were praying or if you were really doing anything differently because Joe Hart is getting baptized this coming Sunday. Let me tell you about the chain of events that took place for that to happen. Alrighty, so Tuesday evening the Harts invited us out to have dinner with them. They live clear out about 15 to 20 minutes outside of town in a little place called Bangor. So we went out there and we had an awesome dinner. It wasn't anything crazy or special, it was just burgers cooked over a wood fire. All the while we are just chilling outside on a beautiful day. It was my kind of night. We actually stayed out there for quite some time just talking and getting to know them on more of a
personal level. Eventually it came time for us to leave and so we shared a spiritual thought on having faith in Christ. We asked Joe if he had been thinking about a baptismal date and he said that he had. I then told him, Joe we have been thinking a lot about you and when it might be good to have your baptism. I then asked him if he would like to get baptized on the 10th of May. He said he didnt see any problem with that other than he might be out of town. So we said ok lets move
it to the 11th, and he said he would think about it. On Thursday we went over again for our lesson that we have with them. What we have been doing for about the past 2 weeks is we go out have a
lesson and then do some service because they have about 16 acres of land and so it takes quite a bit of work to maintain it all. So during the lesson we started off talking about the baptism. He said that he wanted to get baptized then and he felt he was ready! I don't know what it is but for some reason our Heavenly Father has seen fit to bless me with the opportunity to teach people who are very prepared. I do not feel worthy of being able to meet and teach them but I am so grateful for the opportunities that have been presented to me. Anyways we talked about studying the scriptures as well as Modern Prophets and then finished it off with tithing and fast offerings. Then we were
able to do a bunch of stuff for them. I got to mow the lawn while Elder Stein helped with taking somethings apart for them. What a great day!
So the story doesn't end there. On Saturday we headed out there again and like I have told you in past emails we have been helping the, build the Harts daughters house, which is just down the road from them. We spent the morning and a bit into the evening putting their roof on. It was a lot of fun, i really miss being able to get out and work hard and put in a good days work. Anyways we enjoyed being out there with them. They are all just such nice and humble people, grateful for what they have and firm in what they believe. Later that same evening we had a pie and ice cream social. It was a lot of fun especially because I got to be one of the judges, in fact Joe Hart and I were the judges for the event. There were a lot of really good pies there, so it is a good thing that I have learned to like pies out here. That evening a member that is good friends with Joe talked with him and they all decided that because it was Mother's Day was on the 11th they decided to move the baptism to the 4th. We were completely fine with that so we started putting things into place for the whole baptism and stuff.
Sunday was a great day we had a decent amount of inv. come to church. We had Joe Harts baptismal interview which went very well. The Elder that did the interview said that Joe is definitely very ready to get baptized. I sat there with just Joe and his wife for a moment later and asked him what it is that has made the difference, because he has been coming to church for about a year now and his wife has been a member for quite a few years as well. He told me that it is the way that the Gospel has helped his family and his daughter. He also mentioned that us missionaries had made a big difference in helping him feel comfortable. That really helped me feel like he is probably someone that I needed to come here to find and to teach. Anyways the baptism will be this coming Sunday so we are all excited about that. A few other things I wanted to mention were a few other lessons that took place. We met with Robert again and it went really well. He accepted an invitation to be baptized, if he came to know that church is true. We covered the Restoration and he had a few questions about the priesthood and prophets but we were able to explain it all for him. He also came to church with us yesterday, he is a really outgoing guy so it wasn't too hard for him to start finding common ground with people around him. It was really neat because he was making comments and asking questions in Elders quorum and usually new inv. that come to church just sit there. At one point the teacher started getting emotional because he was talking about the Plan of Salvation and hisdad who had passed away. I looked over at Robert and he was getting emotional as well, so i could tell he was really feeling the spirit. Hopefully we will be able to set a baptismal date with him soon and be able to start getting progressing towards baptism.
Well there is a little snippet from my week. As I said things here are going really well. We are seeing success and are constantly busy. I am really grateful that I am able to have the experiences that I am having here at this time. So I got my travel plans. I am sure that you have gotten them as well, or at least you will be getting them soon. From what they say it sounds like I am going to be getting into SLC about 1 or so. Well I love you all and hope everything is going well for you all.
Have a great week! Love Elder Payne