Sunday, February 22, 2015

Week Ninety One - District Building and Hanging With Elder Powell!

The District!

Elder Denos, Elder Williams, Elder Adams, Elder Powell and Elder Barton!
Howdy Y'all!

   Another week has come and gone in Garland.  And crazy fast has it done so too!  The weather was quite nice all week, Saturday it was almost too hot for me!  But today it is back down into the 30's, and I think it is supposed to be quite cold all week.  But who knows?!  Weather here is quite unpredictable. 
   This week was pretty neat.  President and Sister Taylor have come up with the idea to do "district building" exchanges, where the assistants and sister training leaders spend a day and a half with a district (a night, day, a night, and half a day).  This past week was the first time trying this, and they started with our district!  So Wednesday night, Elder Adams and Elder Powell, my two best MTC buddies, along with our district leader, Elder Barton, also from the MTC, arrived to our apartment to do nightly planning with us and spend the night.  As you can imagine, 5 elders in one apartment was a real hoot!  The next morning, we went on a long run together, had studies, and then had a 3-hour long district meeting/counsel together.  We received trainings and discussed ways to overcome the obstacles and challenges we face in our ward and areas.  It was quite helpful, because we have lots of challenges in our ward... But following the counsel, we went on exchanges for the day, where Elder Denos went with Elder Adams, and I was with Elder Powell and Elder Barton in a trio.  That too was helpful because Elder Powell drove us around in his van, and he also served in the area that I am currently in for 6 months, so he introduced me to some people and gave me lots of ideas of things we could do.  It was awesome working with Elder Powell!  We have really never served anywhere near each other since arriving to Dallas, so the last time I got to work with him, we were clueless and neither one of us spoke Spanish!  It feels good to say that we have both come along way.  Elder Powell is an incredible missionary, and it was inspiring to be his companion for the day.  At the end of the day, all five of us elders got back together at the apartment, we did nightly planning, and had another sleep over.  The following day, we had another district meeting/counsel in the morning with everybody, reported on how things went with our exchanges, and made plans for the future.  It was all very organized.  Every once in a while, I'll remember that we are all just 20 year old kids and how crazy it is that we are doing what we are doing.  It's pretty neat!  And now, I get to do the same thing all over again tonight, tomorrow, and Wednesday morning with another district in the zone.  I'm going back to Lakewood baby!  Hopefully all of that made sense.  
   On Friday, as soon as we got done with the district building activity, Elder Stewart and I had to work on getting the stake president report ready for about 5 hours.  So many phone calls and number crunching and trying to keep track of so many things for so long, my brain was about to explode!  But we got it done, and Sunday morning we met with Stake President Larsen and his new counselor, President Foote.  I was really impressed with these men.  They are so kind and loving and happy and successful.  I just love meeting good quality people, especially in the Church.  It is a testimony builder to me that the Church and gospel together, when put first in our lives, can help us reach our potential and refine us as people.  
   HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!  Mother, you guessed right, Valentines Day was just another day in paradise... I mean Garland.  We splurged a little bit and went to subway for lunch, and I splurged even more by getting one of the $7.75 sandwiches.  But only because it was Valentines Day.  A single, recent convert in the ward took us out to dinner to a a chinese buffet.  But other than that, we just enjoyed the heat and did normal missionary stuff.  But I hope y'all had a fantastic day!  

-It is a bit of a challenge to train and be a zone leader, but I like it!  There is barely enough time in a day to do all that we need to do, so we are always busy and my mind is always always occupied.  It's exhausting, but it's good for me.   
-Elder Denos took a little Spanish in high school, but none of it stuck with him.  It is a little hard on the ears to listen to his Spanish, but he seems to be ahead of some of the other elders that came out with him.  He's not afraid to speak it, so he's learning fairly fast.  
-the cookies were superb and in one piece.  How did you make those things?!  Thank you very much for sending me that stuff.  You are too sweet!  I also got the card from grandma and grandpa Pratt.  Make sure they know that I love them and thank them!  

Felicidades to cousin Ryan and Amanda!!!!!!!!!!   
It makes sense what you say about the summer and work.  Working at the zoo sounds kinda fun!  I'd like to keep my options open though still.  A summer at home sounds great!  Well, as of yesterday, I have now been a missionary for 21 months.  I don't know how to feel about it, probably because nothing is really setting in yet.  But time has never flown by faster than the way it is now.  I'll be home in no time!  I am grateful for the updates and all that you and everybody does for me.  I couldn't do this without y'all! 

Love you to Kolob and back!

Elder Williams 

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