This week. Wow. Elder Salmon is legit. I love the kid. We are literally having the time of our lives. I have NEVER been more exhausted in my life. This week was the busiest of my mission so far.
So let me tell you about this area. We have 6 baptisms planned for this month as of this week. We have a family of 5 from Columbia being baptized on the 18th. Only 3 of them are eligible to be baptized thoug (age). Then we have two more baptisms that are set in stone and this week we will be scheduling some more. This past week we found over 30 new potential investigators and then on top of that we found 8 new investigators that are now progressing and reading the Book of Mormon. It has been a week of miracles. Me and Elder Salmon have knocked 3 doors in our area. We have been simply relying on the Lord to show us who to visit and who to see to network the area. We have been trying to gain the members trust and serve them in anyway possible and then we just casually talk with them about their friends and they are so willing to do missionary work. Essentially, effective missionary work is done by the members and this ward is LEGIT. We have seen the Lord take us literally by the hand and just lead and direct us to families who have been prepared. I want to take some time to describe a couple of cool experiences I had.
First one is the funny one. Out here in Yukon there are some houses and areas that when I opened my mission call, I imagined this. haha So we went to this one family's house and we pull up and its basically a farm. Not to mention, I am known as the pretty city boy who knows NOTHING about the country everywhere I go. Its humiliating. I'm doing my best. Anyways, we get to this house and its a pure farm. Goats and chickens and everything. Then we sit down to dinner and this family has 4 little kids. They were sitting down at another table since they didn't have room. I looked at the food and we were having meat and other things. Classic. I was stoked. Then all of a sudden, I heard the little 4 year old excitedly yell "Hey mom is this Big Mac that we are eating?!" She then responded by saying "no honey, big mac is still in the freezer". I looked at her and said..."you freeze your Big macs from mcdonalds?" She casually looked at me like I was retarded and said "no, big mac was our pet cow"....man did I get a good wake up call. I couldn't stop laughing. These little kids were SO EXCITED to eat their pet cow hahahah I love oklahoma.
So we are teaching a guy and I will call him Joey. So Joey when the missionaries first met him, yelled at them and apparently long stor short and ambulance was called and the missioanries thought he would never let them back. It just went bad. So my first day we went to see him. We taught him and he was super interested. Each time we go back and see him, he has come to the conclusion on his own that what we preciously taught him was true. It has been one of those experiences for me to see how the spirit has worked in this mans life. He gets so excited to see us and is making HUGE changes in his life. He has come to church with us the past two weeks and gets answers to his prayers every single time he prays. I guess you kinda have to be here to see it. Long story short, the Spirit softens hearts and converts if we can create an atmosphere where the Spirit can be fostered like a seed. Its the truth. It's a miracle.
This story is my favorite. I was so humbled by the experience I had. I went on exchanges this past Friday with an Elder and his Companion. Elder Manwaring is a brand new district leader and he is training a brand new missionary from texas named elder Rodriguez. They have a companionship with 3 missionaries so their companion Elder Winterton went with Elder Salmon to Yukon and I went to Bethany, OK. This companionship had a little bit of a rough start. Lots of pride and contention. Elder Rodriguez has so much fire and passion as a new missionary and is full of faith. It had been a rough week so I had been praying for a spiritual experience the whole week leading up to the exchange. When I got there, my allergies escalated and I felt miserable. We had no car so we had to walk everywhere. Anyways, we saw a couple of people but overall had no BIG successes. After dinner we tried 5 different people and NO ONE was home. I kept a prayer in my heart and KNEW the Lord would provide something. The member then got frustrated with the appointments falling through and took us home at 8:50. As we were driving home it started POURING and HAILING. Basically everything "seemed" to be going wrong with this exchange. So The other elders were pretty down and were about to turn in. We got outside the door of our apartment and were soaked. I told them to stop and said that we were going to still be 100% obedient and stay out until 9pm. So in the pouring rain, we gathered together as the Lord's servants and prayed to our Heavenly Father that in 10 minutes he would guide us to someone. After the prayer we looked at Elder Rodriguez....the brand new missionary and told him to follow the spirit. We turned and followed him. We knocked an apartments door and no one answered. We then went upstairs and knocked...no one answered. It was 8:55 pm literally and we said we would try one more door. We walked across to another apartment and knocked. Finally someone opened and she just looked at us. We were DRENCHED from head to toe and freezing haha She told us to come in! We were so excited!! We asked if we could pray with her and she said of course. After the prayer she said "you know, this is really weird because I just moved here from Arkansas and I was meeting with the missionaries up there and didn't know how to get in contact with ones down here. My heart just melted. I literally started tearing up as we walked outside that door into the pouring rain and walked back home at 9:10 pm. God is a God of miracles and He works according to our faith. that night He taught us two important lessons.
1. When we work unceasingly to be obedient for Him, He provides.
2. It is not about quantity...but rather quality.
Think about all the ways the Lord has influenced your life for the better. I promise you that as you pray for your eyes to be opened to the miracles surrounding us everyday, you will begin to feel more grateful for all the Lord has done for us. He is involved and He does care. He will make us struggle all throughout the day sometimes just to strengthen our Faith and humility in Him. I love Him. I know that He is worth it.
One more month and I will have a year left. CRAZY.
Elder Dallin Cutler
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