Monday, September 22, 2014

September 22, 2014

Family,

As mentioned last week, I came to the conclusion that teaching with our Mission President and his wife would be pretty cool, so that's just what we did.  A was in New Orleans this weekend for school, but K brought a random friend with him to the Saturday evening session of Stake Conference, and had a different random friend sit in on our McDonough lesson.  Stake Conference must be pretty weird from the eyes of an investigator, especially this "hastening the work" business; we must seem like the most obsessed people.  From my experience, one of Elder Zwick's favorite things to talk about are ipads, so K laughed with us (but probably mostly at us ;) for being the loser missionaries that are behind the times. At the end of the session I asked them jokingly if they were pumped to be missionaries, but K just said he had a lot to think about.

Now on to the coolest lesson. K and President were essentially the only ones that spoke during the lesson, and when we left Sister McDonough was her typical humbleness and just kept saying "He is amazing, he is so amazing. I have so many questions now, I'm worried I've been superficial (in her studies)." K grew up in a nondenominational church where a lot of people did crazy stuff and chalked it up to being influenced by the Spirit to do those things, so now while he believes the Spirit leads to truth, ultimately we need concrete truths from the Bible. President talked him into understanding that his concrete source of truth involved his own interpretations, and so the Spirit's role is to bring our interpretations in line with God's. He gave him two talks to read about grace, his phone number to call and discuss his reading, and then challenged him to try out not believing in the trinity as an experiment. President is the coolest.
In other news, A (lots of investigators with first names that start with A...) is still getting baptized this Saturday, and already passed her interview. This is our District Leader's first transfer as a District Leader, so A was his very first interview. It took them like half an hour, and A emerged with all sorts of random mission stories such as a nudist colony in Slidell. Missionaries are weird.
In sad news, we forgot that Tuesday was A's birthday, and didn't call and sing to her like we had to L and K on each of their birthdays (her sister/brother-in-laws). We're failures, but she forgave us anyways :) little does she know it took me most of my life to remember my own family's birthdays.... and I still don't remember ANYONE else's... good thing we have planners to remember for us!

In other sad news we had a loser phone call this week. I don't know if I told y'all about H and P, but they were a cool couple we had an awesome first lesson with a couple weeks back. They had SO many questions about God and religion, but due to them being busy our return appointment kept getting pushed back until this Friday. Sister Parmenter called Friday afternoon to confirm the appointment, and I sat across the table from her while she got super excited, and asked if they wanted to set a date for baptism, or if we should talk about all that this evening. Her face then got super confused, and she realized that he actually hadn't told her that they'd discovered that this was the true church, but was instead asking us to not come back, because they were going to look into ALL religions (Muslim, Catholic, etc.). That conversation definitely took a turn for the worst. At least they didn't break up with us over text, right?

In STL news we had like three exchanges this week. We're pooped. We did our full exchange with the Ruston Sisters on Wednesday, and then on the way home did another one with the West Monroe Sisters from noon to 9, and then on Saturday had a baby-sized couple hour exchange with the El Dorado sisters, because their ride brought them way too early to Stake Conference. Even though West Monroe and El Dorado are double-dippers, we had a good time ;)

Love y'all oodles and boodles!
Sister Markle

P.S. I just looked up one of the talks President left with K, and it was sooooooo good. That Bruce R. McConkie sure knew his stuff. "What Think Ye of Salvation By Grace" is good stuff for anyone to read, but I may be biased because it so pointedly deals with K's concerns. Also for the past while I may have been saying that salvation by grace alone, irrespective of our own efforts, is in line with Lucifer's plan of salvation, and it's always nice to have your conclusions backed up by an apostle ;)

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