What a week in Prattville, AL! We have been super busy grinding and working and basically exhausting ourselves, but that’s all what Missionary Work takes sometimes! We are doing a lot of finding people to teach. We have a few solid investigators, but we need more people to teach. You could say that this transfer we are really hitting hard the principle of always finding. But there were a couple experiences we had that are worth sharing.
I’ll starting with the not-so-great stories and work my way up. On Monday night last week we went to talk to Dylan, someone that the Sisters had seen a couple times. When we went to talk to him is was later at night and we didn’t go inside so we stood and taught him about the Book of Mormon in the light of the burning butt of his cigarette. He started off very uninterested, but as we began to teach and explain to him what the Book of Mormon was his entire mindset changed and he became interested to read. We were looking forward to go back, but realized the odd situation it was and why the Sisters asked us to go over. So, a few days later we come back to teach him and he pretty much lied to us as far as what he had been taught and learned and everything he told us was straight from Googling “Mormons” because it was almost all anti. So that started off to be a cool experience but the turned into something very frustrating. Story of our lives haha!
On Tuesday we did find a few people that we set up appointments with for this coming week, so we are hoping that all works out with them. That night we also went back to visit with the Brooks family who we had found the Sunday before and we read the introduction to the Book of Mormon with them and explained it a bit more. We determined that the church needs to simplify their introduction to the Book of Mormon because it was confusing in some places when you are trying to use it to teach non-members. We haven’t seen them since then but are hoping we can get in their home this coming week as well to re-teach the restoration and put the wife on date for baptism-is not both of them. It’s been interesting to have used baptism as a contact at the door how easy it is to go back and continue to reference baptism and our expectations for them.
There isn’t really any more updates on anyone else individually. We did have a good lesson with Lee just about everything she had learned and hopefully she applied it and is able to recognize her answers...because she is getting answers we know it. We taught Alex the Restoration finally in an actual lesson and he was very receptive to it, I think. It was one of the best lessons that Elder Matthews and I have taught together. Other than that though like I said a lot of finding which means a lot of tracting. They always say that tracting is the least effective way to find people, but we both beg to differ.
This past week I was able to offer two different blessings for a couple different people and each time I get a chance to do that my faith is strengthened. One was a Blessing of Comfort and the second was for a little boy (who we are hoping to start to teach and baptize) because he wasn’t feeling well. It is always a unique experience thought to give blessings, specific blessings with certain words that I can assure you weren't mine to individuals I do not know. But, He knows them.
Last night we had a pretty cool experience though. It had been a long day, a long day. And we were tracting to hopefully find a family of seven (that’s been our goal the past few days and we haven’t found them yet). No one was answering their door and if the did answer they weren’t interested. After about 30 minutes we decided we were going to pray to ask if this was where we needed to be but there was a car driving by so we decided to wait for the car. Our luck, the car pulls into the driveway of the house we had just knocked and like all good missionary we ate the TOAST and took the awkward situation head on. We started a conversation with Cindy, an older lady who was fairly interested in what we believed about the Book of Mormon. We ended up giving her a Book of Mormon and scheduled a time to come back. As we were writing down her information and waiting to again, pray to see if we needed to leave a younger girl walk past us with her headphones in and we smiled and said hello. She continued down the street and we continued talking about Cindy and where we could go next and then as we were talking I see the girl stop and look back at us. I thought she felt weird because she must have thought I was looking at her so I looked away but she still stood there a couple houses down watching us. She took out her headphones and walked back towards us and stops right in front of Elder MAtthews and I. We didn’t really know what to do so we just started talking to her, not necessarily about the gospel and then she says “Why do y’all always skip my house?” After more conversation we discovered that she hadn’t really talked to missionaries before, and she didn’t really know who we were. WE taught her the Restoration and scheduled a time to come see her as well. Whether you want to think it was coincidence or just a weird situation with weird timing-Heavenly Father answered our prayers without us asking in the first place. He didn’t give us a chance to ask Him. Oddly enough right before all of this happened we had been talking about how if God has people prepared He is going to lead them to you. Now, that doesn’t take aways your responsibility to do what you’re asked nad to work; but, it does mean that when you’re doing all you think you can He will send you those He has prepared. And both Cindy and Ann were sent straight to us, we didn’t move more than fifteen feet in finding both of them.
- I took a two hour nap on p-day last week and it was glorious.
- We were asked by an older lady if we were brothers and when we said, “No,” she responded “Oh, you could be twins!”
- We keep having weird meal appointments with people, but that’s okay.
- There was a Bible study at Alex’s Church of Christ on Wednesday that we attended. We sang hymns out of their hymnal before we started and it was lead by whoever wanted to go up. So, we (us and the Sisters) found “How Firm a Foundation” and they went up to lead it...only to discover that women aren’t allowed to lead. SO we saved them and no one knew the song and we were singing it “mormon-version” which was totally wrong, but oh well!
- I drove an electric cart back into Wal-Mart for an older lady.
Well I hope y’all had a great memorial day! It was cool to be in basically an armed forces town during a holiday like that. A lot of respect goes out to those who have served, are currently serving, and will serve in our Armed Forces. I love y’all and hope you make it another wonderful week!
ELDER MICHAEL S. MILIUS
ALABAMA BIRMINGHAM MISSION
"Behold I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of Him to declare His word among His people, that they might have everlasting life." ~3 Nephi 5:13
Elder Milius and Elder Matthews
Elder Milius is somewhere in that pile of pillows!