Weekly Mission Report – Aug 3rd

Hey everyone,

This week has not been to exciting and it’s been rather dull but I still have a good story to share later. We have just been busy this week with meetings and interviews with the president. We had to go to Macon all Friday for a meeting and we had to take one of the missionaries we car pooled with to the hospital because he got hit by a car on his bike the night before. Turned out he had a broken wrist. Last Pday we went fishing and that was a ton of fun. One guy caught a pretty big catfish. Later that day we cooked up a bass that he had caught a few weeks earlier. It was so good. Another elder and I bought Bob Marley shirts a few weeks back and we both wore them for that Pday. Usually I am not a fan of matching but these shirts were pretty awesome. Everyone we saw commented on them. This week my companion and I went tracting in Warrenton. We taught 3 lessons and one guy we talked to wants us to come back. He has talked to sister missionaries before and liked it a lot. For some reason he hasn’t seen missionaries in a while. He is lonely and depressed because of the deaths of his parents and his paper business is about to shut down. I cant wait to talk to him again and share with him the plan of salvation. He will love it and it will be awesome teaching it. I know the spirit will be strong in that lesson just because he was crying when we talked to him at the door about his parents. Unfortunately though this week is going to be another slow week. My companion has an ingrown toenail. He has to go get it cut off on Thursday and then Friday he has to elevate his leg all day. We also have to go to Macon again on Wednesday to go on exchanges with the AP’s. I forgot to mention my story while we were tracting. After the last house we visited, we walked outside and it was pouring rain. We were a quarter mile from our car and had to run back to it. I included a picture to my letter because we were soaked. It ruined my planner and the book of Mormon and bible I had in my hands. I was able to save all of them but they look really bad. I guess it just adds character to them and its a good conversation starting because people always ask what happened to my Book of Mormon and Bible. (I teach with hand out copies not my good ones). The rain also ruined one of my silk ties. It got all shriveled up. I’m trying to save it but theirs just not much hope for it.
Even in these slow weeks their always seems to be an adventure or two. Its been a lot of fun. Thank y’all for your support. I really appreciate it. The mission is awesome. I am growing so much because of it. Its weird just looking back on this past month and seeing how far I have come. The gospel is a real thing. It really does change peoples lives. You can totally see the happiness it brings in the lives of those we teach. Even if they don’t accept our message it still brings them joy and one day they will figure out where that joy came from. It may not be in this life but they will for sure figure it out in the next life.
Elder Goodsell

Weekly Mission Report – July 27th

Hey Y’all

This week you will not believe it, but we did not get locked out! It was a miracle and we found a spare key which I now carry. This week was busy with two exchanges.  First, I went on a exchange with one of the Zone Leaders.  I went to the Zone Leader’s areas in Augusta and the Elder I went with had quite an attitude. I just kept telling myself that Ill be back home tomorrow and I made it through with no arguing. I just let him do his thing. What amazes me, is that even though I didn’t like him very much, we still had good lessons. The Lord still helped us, or me feel the spirit in the lessons. It was great!  My second exchange lasted two days with an Elder from Guyana, South America.  He is the bomb!  We had so much fun and at the same time got a ton of work done.  I wish we could be companions because we were great friends from the start.  We had awesome lessons, contacted so many people and at the same time, had a lot of fun in between.
This week, besides the great things that happened, has been the hardest of my mission. We were supposed to baptize this awesome lady, who was the nicest person I have ever met on Saturday.  Last Monday we had dinner at her house.  Which was awesome.  She cooked us some great southern food!  Well, after the dinner we set up her baptism and gave her a blessing because she has been struggling with her daughter who is super anti-Mormon. She told us that no matter what she would get baptized and stand strong because its the right thing to do.  As we left, the dog ran out and we went to chase it.  It was dark and as we left her front yard to run down the street after the dog, this car came flying into her driveway. Well we eventually got the dog and when we returned her grandsons were yelling at her because of her decision.  We walked by and put the dog inside.  Asked if everything was okay, and one kid told us to go away and get out of here and that we are not welcome.  We left so that we did not add to the problem.  That was really hard.  I sat in the car feeling that I should go say something.  Finally we decided to pray about it and when we finished our prayer, they left.  I felt impressed that I should not say anything and that I should leave.  Later that night, Bonnie texted us and said she was okay and that she still wanted to get baptized.  We were glad to hear that, but we were still upset by the situation.  The next day, I went on exchanges and later that night my comp called us and said Bonnie’s baptism was off and we can no longer talk to her, or see her. I thought he was joking but then he explained the situation.  Apparently, the daughter took pictures of our car and reported us to the police.  She asked that we be arrested if we go back.  Now, obviously they cant do that with out Bonnie’s consent because the daughter does not own the house or property.  This sent me through the roof though!  I was determined to go back and talk to them about this.  I have not heard anything from Bonnie about the matter which makes me upset but our ward mission leader asked us to leave them a lone for now because he doesn’t want to cause contention and problems with in the family. So the deal is, that when Bonnie becomes stronger and stands up against her family we are free to go back even if they call the police.  We just have to wait for her to become stronger.  We are worried for her and this has been very rough.  We are hoping for the best and are moving forward.  Unfortunately, several of our investigators also dropped this week because we learned they were more interested in hanging out with the missionaries then actually learning about the gospel.
Through all this we did have one good thing come yesterday.  An older couple who have been investigating the church for a year now called us because the older man was in the hospital.  Some guys in the ward immediately took us to the hospital in Augusta where we were able to visit them.  Their names are JD and Becky. They are the coolest and funniest people I have ever met and Becky called my mom the other day.  They are just awesome.  Becky knows the church is true and she is just a dry Mormon who needs baptism.  She said she will get baptized but its between her and the Lord. We think its because her husband is not fully committed yet.  Once he is, then she will get baptized for sure.  He has been a lot more open recently and he loves the missionaries. He is impressed that we are out teaching the gospel while in his words, “everyone else our age is out getting high, drinking, and getting pregnant.” So its great that he is more open and is coming around. He struggles a lot with his health and yesterday we had the opportunity to give him a blessing.  He asked me to seal the anointing and give him the blessing.  It was my first time to do this, and it was an amazing experience!  He immediately calmed down and his wife could not believe the change in him after.  It was powerful and the spirit in the room was incredibly strong.  It was great to end the week on such a high note.
I told my mom its just been non stop adventure since I have been out here.  I guess I totally asked for it though.  I love it and it has been great.  I have been humbled a lot by watching the trials people here are dealing with.  We all have life so perfect and wonderful.  Many here struggle to make it each day and its hard to see that.  You want to help them, but your to poor to give them money.  This is why teaching the gospel is so great. It brings that happiness into there lives that no amount of money could do.  We need to look around and open our eyes.  We need to appreciate what we have and be grateful we are so blessed. Thank you all for your support. I love the comments on the blog.!
Elder Goodsell