Sunday, October 6, 2013

Week Twenty - Elder Family Tree and Connections to Home!

So this is a family tree I guess you could call it.  He trained him who trained him who trained him who trained me.  I am a descendant of some great missionaries!

Buenos dias mis amores! 
    Boy does it feel good to be here again!  I had a fairly decent week, can't complain.  It was definitely much faster than the last one!   It's Elder Crockett's birthday today!  Elder Crockett was sick for a few days.  That slowed us down quite a bit.  He doesn't know if it was a cold, sinus infection, or just really bad allergies.  Apparently allergies are pretty bad here this time of year, which doesn't make sense to me because it's fall, and you would think that everything would be dying, nothing growing.  But even I had some pretty intense allergies this week!  Only for one day though, and then I took a pull and I was mucho mejor.  But the weather is amazing right now!  I've been worried because when you talk to people from Texas about winter, they say it is bitter cold and miserable.  But last night I talked to some peeps from Utah about it and they say winter is amazing and their favorite time of year!  I should have known...haha! 
     Happy Birthday Grandpa!  and Congrats to Ryan and his nueva esposa!  Did they get married in the temple?  I actually met someone in the ward this week that went to Alta high school.  So I asked him if he knew the Hinton's, and he actually grew up next to them, hanging out with Ryan!  !  His name is Brock Hansen.   He has befriended a Spanish guy named Manuel that wants to be baptized, so we had a lesson with him at Brother Hansen's house.  With the help of Brother Hansen, Manuel should be baptized in no time!  Bro Hansen is awesome.  He served in Venezuela, played football at BYU, married a BYU cheerleader, and they are practically the dream couple.  He is a very admirable guy.  It's obvious that he was a good missionary and his mission changed him.  He is incredibly loving, genuine, and just has this spirit about him that is enjoyable to be around.  Ryan Packard I believe serves in the young men's with him.  I know who Ryan Packard is, but I've never talked to him. And I don't know who the Reece's are.  We had dinner this week with the Hoppers.  I actually met Brother Hopper in the mtc.  He was a teacher there.  When I met him in the mtc he asked "where ya serving Elder?"  and I told him "Dallas Texas!" and then he said "no way I'm moving out there in a couple months."  Never thought I would see him again, but my first Sunday here in Lakewood was his first Sunday here in Lakewood!   He is a great guy.   So yeah, it's a SMALL WORLD!  
       On Tuesday we had a meeting with all the missionaries in the stake, along with the Stake President and Brother Romney, an ex mission president that I think I've talked about before.  After the meeting we had an awesome lunch that Sister Romney had prepared for us.  It is tradition for missionaries to sing to people that cook for us. We sang her "Called to Serve" and "Army of Helaman".  There is just something about a bunch of missionaries singing for someone like that.  The spirit was muy fuerte and she started crying, and it almost made me cry!  I couldn't help but think about my mommy!   Love you! 
       On Friday we had a specialized training, where I got to see a bunch of my amigos again.  That is where the picture was taken of the Elder Tree.  It was a grand time and I learned a lot.  Sister Durrant gave a training on obedience.  She shared a story of her father that fell away from the church, and the negative impact it had on the rest of her family.  Others suffer when we aren't obedient.  People miss out on opportunities when we aren't obedient.  It was a very different view on obedience and it is definitely something I will remember.  She also talked about abrazando la oportunidad que tenemos de ser misioneros!  Learning to "hug" this opportunity we have to be missionaries.  If we can learn to hug, embrace, and cherish every minute we have as missionaries, how much more could we get out of these short two years?! 
-no packages this week, but I did receive a couple old letters that have been stuck in GP.  One from Cindy Nelson and one from "the Phantom"?  A mystery person in the ward that doesn't want to tell me who they are.  But thanks Cindy and whoever else you are!
-I've just been trying to be more conservative with my money.  It helps because Elder Crockett goes broke about half way through the month, and it's easy not to spend money when your companion doesn't have any money to spend. 
-I'm still trying to get to the post office, but I don't know where it is and it is probably too far away to bike to, and the English Elders don't really help us out with rides much anymore since the argument.  But I'm still going to try to send it home this week.
-for Christmas I think I want a photo album of pictures.   Family, the pups, maybe some cool pics of tommyboy on his mission, and just memories.  I would prefer an actual photo album but if you can do it electronically and it would be easier, then that will work too.   but that's all I can think of right now. 
-our first week together here in Lakewood we did tons of knocking, only because Elder Crockett's last companion was in his last 6 weeks and he didn't want to work, so they didn't.  But we don't do much knocking now.  We don't get any referrals because the ward is English.  We just have certain people we visit weekly, and on the way to appointments we stop and talk to people that are outside. 
-thanks for sending me Tom's and Ely's emails.  I was laughing out loud reading Ely's! 
-I love the picture of Toby!  There are millions of dogs here in Texas, and we see lots of puppies.  We go visit this guy named Hebert every once in a while and every time we enter the gate this big brown puppy comes running up to us and wants to play.  It's pretty dirty, and I get the feeling it doesn't get much attention, but it is always so excited to see us!  It is big and clumsy and I wish I could just take it to the dog park down town and play fetch!  I MISS MY PUPPY! 
Well,  I think that's the shortest email I've sent you my entire mission!  But that's all I've got.  Not a very eventful week.  But yo necesito ir.  Hasta la proxima semana!  Love y'all and miss y'all.  Thanks for all ya do for me!!!
 Con mucho amor,
              Elder Williams 

This is a picture that was taken my last week in Grand Prairie.  Alma Sanchez and Ramon.  They are divorced but still live together.  Their first Sunday at church was my last Sunday in Grand Prairie.  I saw Elder Sheffer on Friday and he told me that Alma was just BAPTIZED! 
   So one night in GP I decided to go down a street that we hadn't been down before, where we found Ramon outside.  He told us a story how he threw a brick through this kids windshield because he was sick of him speeding down the street.  He told us he wasn't too interested in our message, but Alma might be.  So of course, we stopped by a few days later and we were able to talk with Alma.  She told us she was baptized when she was young in Mexico, but had been active for over 40 years.  But it is common for records in mexico to either be done wrong or not properly recorded, so often times people need to get rebaptized.  So she did! 
    Elder Sheffer found out more of her story after we left.  One day she was walking, a ways from her house, and she saw us but was too scared to say anything.  So she went home and prayed to have another chance to talk with missionaries.  Sure enough, she did.  Elder Sheffer said her testimony at her baptism was incredible.  She reminds me of a Mexican Grandma Colleen.  Even though I couldn't understand her, she was just the sweetest lil' old lady, she was always  happy and giggling, and she insisted that we drink her lemonade. 
     The Lord answers prayers, and he will lead us to the elect and ready.  I don't even care that I wasn't able to see her baptism, I am just so happy and excited for her!  This shows me that the impact of your mission on others is practically immeasurable!  I may have never found out that someone I found and taught was baptized.  All we can do is plant the seed and give them the opportunity to accept and live the Gospel, and the Lord will take care of the rest. 

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