Monday, March 25, 2013

takes a lot of stretching and changing for the Natural Man to turn into anything close to be like Jesus Christ

Hey 'fam',
So it looks like you had some fun at temple square. I can't believe it's that busy! that's so cool.
This week was pretty fun. We've had some good lessons with a lot of less actives and also some recent converts, then of course some investigators. We've given a few blessings at the medical center. At one of the blessings I met an awesome lady, she was just there visiting her brother in the hospital. She was a sister missionary a long time ago. It was interesting hearing about some of her stories of how different it was back then. she said one time her family sent her a pink dress and the mission standards didn't let her wear it because it was not lady-like or conservative enough or something. But she had an interesting life. She said when she was growing up, either in South dakota or Virginia, they're temple district was the salt lake Temple. There was only one patriarch and so when they went to the temple which was a big occasion, they all got there patriarchal blessings. We're working with a lady form Angolia (Or something like that). She's really excited about the Gospel and came to church on Sunday. We're still working with some other people that we've been working with. On Saturday I did an exchange with the elders from the Chinese area. I was companions with Elder Meng. He is awesome. He's from mainland China and was converted when he was 18. His story is really really crazy. We keep telling him one day we're going to tell the church to make a mormon message video about him. Most of the day I just smiled in the lessons because I don't know how to speak Chinese. We helped with a service project on Saturday morning, we cleaned trash up at a park and in a Bayou. We had to clean up a few hobo's homes and found a lot of weird stuff. I think I cleaned up something around 70 beer cans. It was actually really fun, then they fed us chili dogs and there was a bluegrass band playing some hillbilly music for us while we ate. Then they had a raffle drawing and the prizes were all things like: fishing poles, a beer can sleeve, a beer shirt, bar coupons, and few normal things like water bottles. On tuesday a recent convert couple took us to a chicken and mashed patatoe southern food place, I feel like I ate 2000 calories worth of food ther but it was good. Another thing I've been doing with food that was good is instead of using the seasoning that comes with the roman, I make my own. (I feel pretty cool being able to do that) I use this cajun season called "slap ya'mama." it's delicious. well, It's been a good week. I've really learned a lot. I've been studying a lot about persecutions and trials and why we go through things sometimes that are so tough. I started thinking about some Prophets and things that they went through. Like Nephi having to leave his home and live in the wilderness for 8 years with little food and rebelious brothers, or Joseph Smith living his whole life after 14 with persecutions and eventual martyrdome. and the Pioneers building homes and having them destroyed and having to leave and travel and build new homes. Or Alma and Amulek having to see saints be burned--men women and children--along with their scriptures and then beaten and spitten upon for many days. All of these people went through unimaginable trials, yet each of them are some of the greatest examples and have brought forth some of the greatest scriptures and blessings for us. There are a lot of things that are hard for us in life. It takes a lot of stretching and changing for the Natural Man to turn into anything close to be like Jesus Christ. Here's a good scripture my companion showed me: 2 Cor. 12:9-10. Then there's also D&C 122 and D&C 54:10 and many others. --well hope the week goes good, Love y'all
-Elder Russell

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