Good morning my wonderful family :)
So first things first of course I'm sure you know its transfers since our P day is on Tuesday this week.
So the transfer board is pretty much exploding. We have a billion elders going home, and 7 of them are from our zone of 16 companionships, 3 of our sisters are training, 2 of them being in their 3 transfer and the Alexandria Elders area is being closed because we don't have enough elders to replace the ones leaving! ahhhh!!
Sister Pfleger and I are staying together as STLs in Alexandria but instead of being over Pineville and Alexandria we are just over Alexandria.
I am so so so sad about this. I'm going to miss Pineville! I love that ward and area. :(
But it will also good to be able to focus on one single area. :)
But in other news of this week...
On Thursdays we do service at the Alexandria Food Bank. This is still a new thing so we are still learning everything.
The prison inmates work there everyday and so they teach us how to do whatever station we are doing. They are really kind and so respectful! They always ask us if we need something to drink :)
So last week we were working at a station with one of the inmates and he asked us where we are from. We tell him we are both from Idaho and of course he is amazed at how far we have come to be in Alexandria. This always brings up the topic of why we are here and that we are missionaries for our church.
So naturally because ya know.. we are in the South and he finds out we are Jesus people, he starts telling us about how he has been in prison since '09 and that since he has been in jail that he has found God, he has been able to study the Bible and get his GED and a college degree.
But he really starts talking about the Bible. His favorite Bible stories, teachings of Jesus, and everything about it!
Finally he takes a breath and I get to jump in there.
I tell him (his name is Kendrick) about the Book of Mormon.
How back in the time before Jesus, there was a family living in Jerusalem and the father was a prophet called of God just like Moses, Abraham, and Noah. God told him that Jerusalem was going to be destroyed and that he needed to take his family and all those who would listen and move away. So he warned everyone he could but no one would listen so he took his family and sailed across the sea to America.
How like the Bible the Book of Mormon was written by prophets called of God and passed down through the generations from prophet to prophet and that it is a record of God's dealings with the people in America.
How I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God and it has changed my life and its why I'm here on a mission. Because I love this book and I want to share it with everyone.
Let me tell yall somthing.
I have never seen someone get so excited about a book of scripture.
He was SO excited to read it!
Our time was pretty much up because at noon they close down for an hour for a lunch break, so I asked him if he was allowed to take books back to the jail and he told me yes! So I let him know that I had a Book of Mormon in the car and I was going to go get it to give to him.
We run out to the car and grab the Book of Mormon but they have already locked up the Food Bank and taken the inmates on their break!
Its a glass door so we knock and they let us in and I give the Book of Mormon to the volunteer coordinator lady, Carol.
Now when we first started at the food bank which was only like.. 4 weeks ago. Carol told us all the cautions and setup and whatever.
We have to put our phones and keys in a locker before we go out to work in the warehouse with the inmates so they cant ask to use our phone or ask for anything. Don't let them ask you personal questions. Be kind but basically not too kind. They are all lazy bums and don't even try to associate with them.
That was the message we got.
But when we started working out there we found them to be incredibly helpful and extremely hard workers. They work SO hard! They are so respectful and kind. When we are there almost every single one of them at one point of the 2 hours or multiple times ask us if we need something to drink and they will go get it for us and they are just kind. They are awesome.
So I had to go give this Book of Mormon to Carol to give to one of the inmates. When I told her about it and what I was asking her to do.....
Oh my. You should have seen her face.
Basically the message on her face was "Um hello. Did you not understand when I told you not to talk about real things to the inmates."
But she took it and set in on her desk and we left saying, "Welp. That Book of Mormon will never get to him." I was kinda bummed.
So that was last week. and we went back to the Food Bank this week it was our fourth time going.
So we go and Carol talks to us and we go in and help in the warehouse again but we go to a different section with a different group of inmates. And this guy that we worked with this week was 53 years old and he is getting released on July 19th but probably earlier. He has earned a college degree while he was in jail and already has a job set up for when he is released! He is the best worker for this section and pretty much its going to fall apart and be so disorganized when he is gone.
Anyways, we are working and at one point in the day we see Kendrick! And I don't want to ask him about it right at the first because I didn't think he would have got it. But then we say hey how ya doing and then the first thing after that he says, "HEY! I got that book!! And I've been reading the first couple of chapters! I love it, its so interesting!I love how Lehi is a prophet and that God talks to him just like all the other prophets......"
And he goes on to tell me a play by play of the first couple chapters of Nephi.
Why do you have to be in jail.
So basically my jaw drops and I don't even know what to say. I don't think I've ever got this far. I think I just say a bunch of nonsense but basically that I'm so happy for him and excited for him to read more because its so good.
I don't even know.
Then I go back over to my companion and do a little happy dance with her.
Then right as all the inmates were gathering around to go take their lunch break, he says to me as we are leaving, "Hey! I'll have some more study stuff about what I read next week!"
And I'm like, "a;sdgnaikwen OKAY!"
I'm shocked yall.
But really that is so cool. I don't know when Kendrick gets out but it must be somewhat soon since he is on work release. But I know that his life will be changed if he really continues to read and study the Book of Mormon.
Did we get a lesson in with Kendrick? no.
Will Kendrick ever be my investigator? probably not.
Will I get to count him as one of "my" baptisms? absolutely not.
So on paper... counting up our lessons, new investigators, people on baptism date.
This encounter was completely useless. Right?
I have learned this necessary fact in my mission work recently.
Numbers. Do. Not. Matter.
Numbers motivate and record progress yes.
But they don't matter.
The people matter.
The Spirit matters.
My purpose as a missionary is to invite others to come unto Christ.
I think that through the Spirit I was able to talk to Kendrick and invite the Holy Ghost to stir up a desire in him to learn more, to read the Book of Mormon.
I invited him to read the Book of Mormon which will most certainly help him know more about Jesus Christ and come closer to him.
I will never get a baptism because someones baptism is not mine to have! Its the Lords. Its not my investigator, its the Lords investigator.
I am just the Lords missionary and happy servant :)
And I hope to be just that for the rest of my life!
I love yall so much!
and happy happy days!
Alexandria for another 6 weeks :)
|also we found a beautiful road and had to take pics. so enjoy us being creative|