Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Hey Family!
Sounds like y'all had a fun weekend floating down the river and what not.  Summer is coming to an end so quick it's crazy!  The weeks keep going by faster and fater and before ya know it it's already a new week.  Enjoy lake powell this week!  Be sure to take some pictures and send them.  The one thing I miss the most about Utah besides the mountains is the sunsets...seriously you can't ever see the sun set here which is so weird! 
This week was oh so good!  It was basically just like any other week though so I'm not sure why it was so good but it just was.  Our goal this transfer has been to work with more members because we're here to help strengthen the members as well as less actives and investigators.  But so far we haven't really been doing a great job at it.  But this week we got to see lots of members just because we stopped by.  Haha and since I'm not gonna be in this area forever I'm trying to introduce Sister Andrade to everyone so she'll know everyone for when I leave.  The best thing about working with members is that they provide a constant friendhsip with investigators and when you get to know them they trust you more.  Even just going over to some members homes once, as soon as we get to church I can tell there's already a better relationship.  I guess you could say it's hard in our ward because our active list is very few compared to less actives.  So often times the members are just too worn out from doing everything but I love working with all the members! 
All the missionaries in BR 1st ward.  From left to right goes Elder Navitikula, Foremanster, Gilbert, Ageda, Jessop.  The elders always match their tie colors on sunday so we decided to join in yesterday.  :)
An awesome moment from this past week was on wednesday.  We tried stopping by a couple peoples homes but none of them were there so we decided to go tracting before our next appointment.  We hardly ever go tracting because it's the least effective way of finding people but we decided it would be good to do anyways.  No one was home and those that were didn't want to let us come in.  But here's the miracle.  We were walking back to the car to head to the appointment when this guy walking by asked if we were Jehovah Witnesses.  So we said no and what church we're from and so he asked us if we had a book.  So of course we gave him a Book of Mormon and got his address and he said he'd love for us to come over.  We went over a couple days later and we met him and his sister.  Their names are Christopher and Porshia.  I would guess he's about 15 or so and she's 25.  Long story short a couple years ago their mom passed away and some senior couple missionaries in the area were teaching them.  It's a pretty sweet story! 
Oh and one more awesome story!  Every thursday night we have gospel study at the ward.  We used to come way back in the day but for the past couple months we've just been leaving it to the elders because it's a bunch of guys that come to play basketball after.  The office elders and the zone leaders couldn't make it so they asked us if we could teach so of course we said yes.  There will either be days when no one comes or tons of them come so we were just expecting none to come.  But low and behold Manny, the elders quorom president came in with his friend Levi.  It was just those two for the first little bit but it's an awesome story.  Levi just started reading the Book of Mormon one day because he felt like it and wants to know where to go in life and kind of the same questions as Joseph Smith.  He knew Manny was a member so he called him up and we got to teach him the restoration!  Aw man the tender mercies of the Lord.  :)  then about halfway in everyone else started showing up for basketball and they joined in on the lesson since we were already teaching.  So we got to teach twenty black guys where the Book of Mormon came from!  Definitely a sweet moment of the week! 
We found a crayon fence in the middle of Baton Rouge so of course we took a picture!


We've got a busy week this week so I'm really looking forward to it!  I'm cutting the email short cause I'm gonna try sending y'all a super funny video and some pictures!  I'll try writing more if I have time and can figure it all out.   

Love you!
Sister Schmutz  

Sorry I couldn't get the video's too big. 
Here's what I learned from the scriptures this week.  :)
While reading Alma 55 this week I was able to relate it to us and our less actives/investigators. In the chapter there were Nephites taken captive by the Lamanites. The part that really stood out to me was in verse 16 it's talking about what the Nephites did after the Lamanite guards were dunk and asleep. The Nephites, "cast in weapons of war unto the prisoners, insomuch that they were all armed" Instead of just coming in and taking the captives out before the Lamanites awoke they provided them with weapons so they could defend themselves. If you relate the captive Nephites to our less actives/investigators and the other Nephites as the missionaries it begins to make more sense. Here we are bringing the weapons to them. The weapons might include the scriptures, the spirit, stronger testimony, and lots more. But it's their responsibility to do something with them. If the Lamanites were to wake up they would have to choose to fight back and be prepared by using their weapons. Our responsibility is to help teach them what they can do to strengthen themselves. 
I'm sure Gottlieb sounds familiar to Dad.  :)

thank you so much for all you do keep up the good work. I love y'all! 

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