Monday, July 13, 2015

letter from Alyssa - July 13, 2015

We have been able to teach people this week, but we have to struggle for every lesson, members or nonmembers.
Brian and Mary Beth's lesson went downhill fast. We started off strong with the Restoration, but since my companion and I have hardly taught together (given our opportunities) we ended up talking way too much and going overtime. I've resolved to not let that happen again. I know lessons won't go exactly perfect in the future, but I'm not going to let that be because the missionaries talked too much. We meet with them again this week.
Shaun keeps going to church, we're passing him to the Elders.
Angelica is super sweet to us, and we are doing our best to not put pressure on her so we haven't taught a discussion yet but our goal is to try to with her this week now that she has adjusted into her new job.
Carazon is being passed to another Elder who is Filipino and can speak Tagalog with her, same with Sam.
Shay is great, she has a baptism date set for September 12th and plan on teaching her the Plan of Salvation next. She is in the process of getting custody of her kids and she has a 3-week vacation planned between now and her baptism which makes me nervous. But she loves having us over and takes in everything we teach her. She even prayed out loud to close our last lesson, it was one of the most heartfelt prayers I have ever experienced.
Wendy's lesson was a disaster. She was a referral from a member, and we thought we were meeting with only Wendy but plans changed last second and we met with her and 2 other members. At first I was excited because it's nearly impossible to get member-present lessons here, but I was also very anxious at the fact that they had no idea our plans to teach her. The lesson took an hour and a half, mostly of the members talking. Wendy is also golden, has read the Book of Mormon all the way through, loves it, recognizes the Spirit in her life, prays daily, and is full of questions. We hardly got to say a word. We planned on teaching the restoration, which we started, but the members took control without a planned lesson and soon they were talking about the possibility of Jesus Christ having kids while He was on the earth, using analogies made up on the spot, telling us which scriptures to read to her, interpreting her dreams based on false doctrine, and even Heavenly Mother was brought up. I was trying so hard not to let myself get frustrated but The Spirit was not there though we tried everything we could without forcing it. By that point I gave up and was able to get my testimony in to bring it to a close. We also don't get to see her for 3 weeks.
On a side note, we didn't get all these names in this past week, though it may seem like it because I didn't report any of the work until last week. We have been working with a list of about 30 names and going through referrals with no success for a month and a half. Contacting here is nearly impossible and a lot of our time is spent making phone calls, leaving messages, visiting empty houses, and brainstorming. We have come up with a few ideas that we've been looking for opportunities to try, and I don't let any of this discourage me because I know I am doing all I can in every situation. What I am working on most is my own becoming. I try to take every situation and apply it to myself, because every time I find something that I can improve on and my purpose in Heavenly Father's plan becomes more and more clear every day. The beginning of the transfer is also a bit rough because we have all sorts of meetings every day for the first 2 weeks. So hopefully I will be able to report more success next week.

- Sister Shumway

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