Monday, October 27, 2014

This week was a great week for Elder Hunter and I.  We were able to meet a lot of people!  We are starting to develop some good relationships with the members and the work is moving forward.  Cleveland is a really big area and we don't have much miles each month that we can use on the car, so we are going to have to figure out how we are going to work the area.  Elder Hunter is a good missionary we get along really well and are having fun!  On Saturday we received a text from Korina that she didn't want to meet with us anymore.  We tried figuring out her concern. Hopefully she will gain a desire to follow God's commandments sometime in the future and will turn back to the missionaries and take the lessons.  She was reading and praying and keeping all of the commitments we had left with her.  She even went to mutual.  Then, on Saturday it all went Kaboom.  The Lord will work on her though that's for sure.  We have been teaching this guy named Matthew though.  Matthew has been being taught by the missionaries for over a year now.  He has a testimony of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith, but has never been to church or really changed his life too much with the knowledge he has gained.  He came to church this Sunday for the first time and really enjoyed it.  He said that he liked how he feels really comfortable there and that it is different from other churches because normally when you go to another church everyone is looking at you like, "why are you here?" and are judging you.  He also said that he likes how we stay calm during our meetings and we don't stand up and sit down all the time.  He overall just had a really good experience.  We are going to continue working with him and hopefully as time goes on we will be able to get him ready for baptism.  He has lived a rough life and has a few things to clean up so we will see what happens:).  
We had the coolest experience ever this past Thursday!  Every Hour of Power in this area we go on splits with the Spanish Missionaries so that if we knock into someone who speaks Spanish then the Elders can contact them.  I was with Elder Resseler and Elder Hunter was with Elder Gamez.  The place we were knocking was super country so the houses were spread apart.  The first house we went and knocked on the guy answers the door and he is Indian and immediately he lets us in.  I just kept having flash backs to when I was teaching Bunny the whole time.  He sat down and told us that he is Catholic, but he loves to hear new things and gain a broad knowledge of Jesus Christ.  He was raised in India and was also raised Christian.  He was telling us how the Hindu's and Muslim's really persecute Christians there.  He told us that he has a family back in India and he had to come here to work because in India the Christians always get the 2nd hand jobs.  We were able to teach him the Restoration.  He soaked it all up.  We were able to set a return appointment with him and will be going back on Tuesday.  His name is Bino, I was impressed that I came here to meet this guy so hopefully everything works out!  He has that classic Indian accent and definitely looks Indian.  He told us that he would make us some food and that the food they eat in his part of India is different from Bunny's so I am excited to try it out.  
After we tracted into Bino and taught him Elder Hunter and I went to dinner with our ward mission leader, Bro. Roberts.  He smoked some more wild hog and made this really good Southern Texas meal.  It was delicious!  After dinner he took us out to his barn where he has tons of goats and fed them.  After we walked out of the barn there was a fence on our left and I looked over at the fence and I just saw two huge horns!  It was the Biggest Texas Longhorn I have ever seen!  It made me jump a little bit.  He got some feed for it and went into the fence and poured a massive bucket full of feed for it.  He also told us that the had a pet Buck and some Deer.  But, the Buck wouldn't come over to where we could see it.  It was an awesome experience.  They also invited us over for Thanksgiving if they are home, so we are crossing our fingers that they will be there!  
This week in my studies I have been reading a chapter a day out of the Book of Mormon and in 2 Nephi 5:27 it says, "And it came to pass that we lived after the manner of happiness." I thought that was really profound that Nephi added that in there.  That there is a way to live to be happy.  I know that as we live the Gospel and as we attend the temple regularly that we will be happy!  Also, this Sunday Elder Hunter and I were both given sometime to introduce ourselves to the ward and basically say whatever we would like to.  I told the story of when I was teaching Luke's Sunday School Class and we were in Primary and the kid who was supposed to give the spiritual thought wasn't there and Luke volunteered to give it.  And, when he got up there with my scriptures he flipped to Moroni chapter 10:5 and read it and bore testimony of it.  I then testified that it is true that by the Power of the Holy Ghost we can know the truth of all things.  And I also talked about the sacrament and related the Holy Ghost to the Sacrament.  It was a really good experience being able to speak in front of people just off a whim.  
We had a fun week going out and meeting people and looking for the elect.  I hope y'all had a good week and that y'all will have another good week this week!  Elder Hunter and I will continue to work hard and have fun!  Love y'all!
Elder Willden

in the middle of no where in Cleveland, TX

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