"When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses." ~Joyce Brothers.
This blog started out to be a way of reporting on Tom's mission adventure. I soon realized that there's just a lot going on in life that I don't want to forget about. Our lives are busy, happy and full and I hope to capture some of the excitement in this blog.
Monday, July 29, 2013
Week Eleven - Furious Encounter and You Can't Judge a Person By Their Socks!
Elder Sheffer in his chair.....
Elder Sheffer, Bishop Ankle Socks and Elder Williams!
Hola mi familia!
This week has flown by! I've almost got my first transfer in the
field under my belt. That's loco! Time really does fly by when you
Last week I forgot to tell you about my exchange with Elder
Hammond, where I went to his area for a day and night, and his companion
came to GP for a day and a night. It was interesting to work with a
different missionary in a different area. I think
we have exchanges once every transfer, an opportunity to learn from
other missionaries and see how they approach the work. Elder Hammond is
an interesting missionary to say the least. He was in the mtc with my
companion, Elder Sheffer, and I was shocked
at how different they are. Elder Sheffer is soooo much further ahead
than him. In Spanish and just being a missionary in general. I could
talk more fluidly than Elder Hammond! Which isn't saying much. And I
know you can't compare missionaries to missionaries,
bc everyone is going to progress at their own rate. But it just showed
me that it isn't just going to come. If you work hard and get
comfortable with being uncomfortable, trusting in the Lord, you are
going to grow much faster. So that transfer motivated
me to work harder, so in 3 months I can be like Elder Sheffer, amazing
missionaries with my Spanish for how long I have been out, rather than
being like Elder Hammond who still has no confidence in his Spanish or
Monday I had another memorable experience. I won't give
details, bc that would take a while, but basically a member pulled up
behind me, demanded to talk to me, and ripped me a new one for being too
far away from my companion on our bikes. Yes, maybe
we were a little too far apart in some people's opinions. But what I
had a hard time with was her reaction. She was absolutely FURIOUS that
we were too far apart on our bikes. She yelled at me for 10 minutes. I
couldn't understand why she was so mad and
she couldn't just say "hey, don't you think you and your companion
should stay a little closer together?" but she was furious and it was a
joke. I couldn't believe it. I have always been no good at thinking of
things to say right in the moment, and I really
admire people that can do that and really wish I had that skill
sometimes. but in the moment I didn't really say anything. After the
fact, however, I thought of so many things I should have said and I
really just wanted to let her have it and make her feel
like the 8 year old girl throwing a fit over something so ridiculous
like she was. But I didn't. Not only because I couldn't think of what
to say in the moment, but because I shouldn't. I'm a missionary. I
have two years to be nothing but friendly and
act like the Savior, no matter how people treat me. But you know
sometimes I really just want to give people a piece of my mind! Just
let them know how I REALLY feel. but that's going to have to wait a
So that was a good start to the week! But other than that, it
was a pretty typical week. We stayed busy for the most part, had a
couple rough, slower days, but it was a good week. Last night we were
in a lesson with someone named Dios Dado, which
literally translates to "God Given". weir huh?! But he was really nice
and interested in what we do as missionaries. During that lesson the
thought came to me; "you know Elder Williams, this is pretty fun".
Talking to people and teaching the gospel really
is fun! Even if it is in Spanish and I can't understand much, it's
fun! There are parts of the work that are not fun, of course, but when I
can really fulfill my purpose and share the gospel with someone, this
Elder Sheffer and I are starting to have a lot of fun together.
He is hilarious! The first few weeks I didn't like him much,
personality wise. He has a weird sense of humor and I never found it
funny until now. His jokes are smart and make you think,
but we are like best friends now! The other day he made a quesadilla
with spicy pepperjack cheese, jalepenos, spicy Louisiana bbq sauce, and
some super spicy "combustion" powder. Every single thing on there was
spicy, and I just thought that was unheard
of! He is a flippin strange kid, but we sure do have a good time. I
really hope we get another transfer together, which I think we will.
Our bishop here of the Spanish ward is white, he served a
Spanish speaking mission in SLC ironically. He wears ankle socks to
church, and up until yesterday I never thought I could respect a bishop
that wears ankle socks to church. Up until yesterday,
I really didn't like him for multiple reasons. In our Sunday morning
meetings with him, he just makes us feel like we are doing a bad job and
nothing else. He doesn't help at all it seems like. I just don't get
that loving, goofy, caring vibe from him that
I can from the boss bishop of LC5th, Bishop Wonnacott. But yesterday
bishop Weenig gave us a ride to dinner and we just got to talk as
people, or former missionary to current missionary, in English, and it
completely changed my view of him. He is a good guy,
you can tell he was an awesome missionary, and he is a good bishop
that knows what he is doing. Maybe not as good as Bishop Wonnacott, but
he gets the job done.
I have been emailing Elder Lambert the last couple weeks, he didn't
say anything about his brother, but good for him! Oh and I read Tom's
emails too. I really wish I would have done that for his entire
mission, I very much enjoy them.
I'm fine with Jeff sharing parts of my emails with other peeps, of
course! I'm just curious to know what parts? I really didn't think I
had written anything worth sharing, but that makes me feel pretty good
That's awesome to hear about Christopher. That sounds like an awesome experience and I am super excited for him!
Haven't gotten the shoes or any other package yet. But I'll check today.
P days we do laundry first thing, then ride to the library to
email, then get a ride from a member to Walmart to get groceries, then
come back to the apt. and clean a wee bit, and relax. If we weren't on
bikes we would probably do a little bit more, but
after a week of biking, we really just enjoy a day of rest. I usually
try to take a nap, but I have only actually fallen asleep once. It's
weird, I don't think i'm going to be able to take naps. I just lay
there and my mind runs tooo much and I just feel
like I shouldn't be napping, no matter how tired I am. But p day ends
at 6 and we get out and hit the pavement!
We wear missionary clothes whenever we are out in public, no
exceptions. But there are some English elders here that we see at the
library and they don't follow that rule. But one of them also flipped
us off one time, so we are kinda confused about them.
Grand Prairie is different but not drastically. I don't know how to explain. It's just another town!
We haven't had to speak yet in sacrament meeting, but i'm sure it's coming!
I don't think the gift cards would be against the rules, but there
really aren't any chain restaurants here that I can think of. Not only
that, but Elder Sheffer doesn't like to take too much time to eat when
we don't have to, so we just go to places
like subway, bk, mcD's, or try places they don't have back home. So
gift cards probably wouldn't do much for us.
Double check my address, it's 2304 for the apartment number.
Welp. I'm out of time. I hope I got everything without too many
typos. I love emailing. I want to apologize for my first few emails
from the field. I realized a week or two ago that I was just being a
baby! Now I just want to get out there and have
the best experiences that I can so I can share them with you every
I love you all and you are a big motivation for me. Family is a
gift from God, and you are the best gift I have in my life that I
cherish more and more every day. Hasta la proxima lunes!