I will do my best to make this email exciting and in depth, but I have already been on the computer for a hour and a half filling out stake reports and accountability sheets for the assistants, and I'm ready to get off the computer. :) But on we go!
Tuesday we did not have a lesson with Dede. She was sick and she has been sick the rest of this week. We have not been able to teach her because of her sickness. When we have stopped by, she told us that she has not read.
This transfer I've decided that things would be a little bit different. When Elder Redston and I were here last transfer, we did not have set areas because we both wanted to continue to work with the Conklin family. Now with a new zone leader coming in, I thought it would be appropriate to change it back to the way it was supposed to be when Elder Redston and I received our trainees (Elder Douglas and Elder Hightower). Elder Douglas and I are permanently on bikes while Elder Hightower and Elder Quakenbush are in the car. (Elder Quakenbush served in Anderson my second transfer. He was on a bike then and I was in a car. Now the tides have turned.) Elder Douglas and I cover downtown Spartanburg and they cover the surrounding areas and county. This week has been exciting as I have watched my "son" (trainee) acclimate to being on a bike all day.
The highlight of this week is John Perry. We visited with John on Thursday and we taught him the Word of Wisdom. It was a great lesson. Normally WOW is not the most spiritual lesson, but the spirit was felt very strong as we taught him. At the end of the lesson, he committed to live the Word of Wisdom which includes him giving up coffee, tea, and cigarettes. Before we left his house, he went to his fridge and took out his pitcher of tea and poured it down the drain! We also told him about our quit smoking program and we set up an appointment to come by on Saturday to set him up on the program. We went back on Saturday with Brother Snider, who gave up smoking before he joined the church, and we went over the quit smoking program. He committed to it and as far as I know, (we have not gotten ahold of him today) he has been smoke free since our lesson! And to make the story even more exciting, he came to church this Sunday! John really enjoyed the sacrament meeting, but by the time it was done he had to go home because his sugar was low. He told us that he will stay for all three hours next Sunday. Our next appointment with John is on Tuesday morning.
On Tuesday we we were down a street and Elder Douglas stopped and asked if we could go back and knock on a house that was in the other direction. We decided to go knock on the door and we met Debra. We taught her about the Book of Mormon and when I asked her if she had any questions about what we shared she asked, "Where can I get one of those books? Can I get that at the Christian book store?" :) We informed her that we would give her a free copy. She was so pleased to receive it. We then went back by on Thursday and she had read the first four chapters. I honestly did not think she was very interested, but I'm glad Elder Douglas was in tune with the spirit to turn around and knock on her door. We have another appointment with her on Wednesday. Brenda is very attached to another church, but I have confidence that if she continues to read the Book of Mormon she will know that it is true.
Friday we had zone conference. It was really good. I learned that one out of every four missionaries in our mission, the South Carolina Columbia Mission, has been on their mission for less that three months! The mission is very young. More missionaries have been coming out than are going home. This is a good thing that there is a larger number of missionaries, but its also scary to think that I have the responsibility to train them to become the future leaders of the mission.
I hope and pray all is well! I know this is a lame letter. I do apologize. I told Elder Douglas that I am just shooting myself in the leg every time I write a longer letter the week before, then you will continue to expect my letter to be longer and longer. I love being a missionary. The work is great. Time flies too fast. Too fast. I know a certain event occurs on this Thursday (Feb. 25th) but I would really appreciate it if we just don't talk about it. I like to think that I am still a young missionary.