Craziest Week Ever. October 17, 2016

So about the trio. The companionship that lives with us had an Elder go home for surgery so he became part of our trio. Since we had no time to prepare, someone had to stay in Cottonwood for a day, while someone had to go up to Spring Valley. So we went on splits. I was here in cottonwood with a priest or older leading the area for a whole day. Then the next day we got a "surprise" in the mail. It was a new Elder. So now we aren't a trio but two of us had to go up to get him from Camp Verde while someone else did splits again. But now there's more of us. Then the next day Elder Townsend had to go to Phoenix because he's a district leader and they had a district leader meeting. So I was again with someone different leading the area who was newer than I was. Then on Friday we had exchanges, but since my companion is the district leader I was with one of the zone leaders and he was with another one. So I was with another random Elder again leading the area, but this time, I was driving. This exchange lasted until the middle of Saturday. Then there was Sunday which is always a good time to slow down after such a crazy week and just think about and remember why I'm out here.

I also have learned or more so just remembered a lot of Spanish. When we meet Spanish speakers I can help see if they're interested and schedule times for the Spanish elders as a referral.

To add to the crazy of this week the ward boundaries changes which only affected. Four wards in the stake. Two of them were our wards. They took a large chunk out of the Black Hills ward and moved it to a different ward to strengthen them and then took a different chunk out of that ward and moved it into our other ward. So gain/lose. But looking at the changes I think it's actually going to benefit everyone by helping wards who need more support.

I've met some really cool people. I've realized that no one is just an average person. No matter what, something has set everyone apart from what others perceive as normal. People are interesting and each knows something that someone else might not know and vice versa. And also everyone has a challenge, everyone you see might have something that they're going through that you might be able to help them with. Don't think that "they probably have it all figured out" because everyone needs help. You might be that help. Never be afraid to do something for someone else.

There's this family we teach and the mom we've taught the most and she knows it's true, but the dad has had a much harder life and was just so scared to take steps, but the other day when we came he just looked different. Like a light had turned on. He always said that he feels like he's never been able to get as close to God as he wanted to but now he says he's done giving up on God and that he believes that this, what we've been showing him is what God has had in store for him his whole life and it will be what helps him feel close to God always.

 Elder Miller, the taller one, went home for surgery. Elder Waters, with
glasses, was our trio bud for a day.

The Little Trainee That Could. October 10, 2016

This is probably been the craziest week ever. Remember last week that our district leader left? His comp was the new DL for two weeks and then he had to go home for knee surgery. We just dropped him off. He was awesome, he's helped me a lot so far with just adjusting in general and has showed me a lot of cool stuff that's really helped me out.

But after we knew that he was going home we all thought that his comp would be DL. We got a call from president not too long ago saying that my comp is the new DL and that we are probably going to be in a trio for the next month until new Elders come in. Now we cover three areas, one area is 45 min away one trip and the other area just boomed in people to teach and the rest of the area is all the Spanish speakers on both those areas. I am now going to teach Spanish lessons. I don't speak Spanish. We'll see how it goes.

And in the midst of all of this, we now have a ward boundary change happening in one week. It's going crazy up here and I'm still in training. But I'm seriously so excited for this. It's going to be so cool.

I got your blue package and that was awesome haha. Thank you so much!

So at the beginning of this week we were invited to take part in helping someone move out. We had a member who is really cool drive us over and when we got there this is what I saw. Remember those hoarder tv shows. It was just like that but with food storage and all sorts of other things but mostly food storage from the eighties. But it had never been moved since then. We had a lesson over there but it canceled so we just thought to come in proselyting clothes to save on
gas because our house was pretty far away. We come in and they all go, "oh, yeah you can't wear that here, it'll ruin your clothes. So they lent us some coveralls that were sweet!

1 Nephi 21:14-16. October 3, 2016

It's been awesome! The week really started out with transfers. My district leader went down to Peoria, and his companion became the new district leader, the. Someone from Peoria came up here. He's pretty cool, he actually knows some people from our neighborhood. Also for transfers, I was told its a time for change so I cleaned up my closet which has two super annoying sliding doors that rub funny on the tracks so they're hard to move. They're big mirrors too. So my comp and I wanted a mirror in our room so now those doors are in the room.

We helped a nonmember move out but she didn't want her fans anymore, like air fans. So she gave them to us for our hard work and it's so nice to have a fan I hear. It hasn't actually been hot, but now when it is I have my own fan.

There's a young girl and I don't know how to say much about her but she's had a really hard time and we've been teaching her and shes been coming to primary. The second week she was at church it was the primary program. We knew she was coming but we couldn't find her but that's because she actually sang in the program. She had her own part too that she wrote. She talked about how the Book of Mormon is giving her hope. It was super cool.

Sorry I didn't share any funny stories yet. Well one is that we had a dinner appt. one day and so I called them and asked if we were meeting and I called someone else with the wrong last name who was super sick and so she said that today wouldn't work. I said ok. So later, because it was the wrong person, we get a call from our real dinner appt. and they say "hey why aren't you here?" My comp is on the phone just eyeing me down. "We must've called the wrong person" he said. "Well just for kicks and giggles what did you guys make for us because we might miss it?"  We were super late at this point. They tell us they made homemade fried chicken, mashed potatoes, croissants, and German apple cake. My comp just died because she loves fried chicken and we never get fried
chicken. "We will be there in ten minutes." Haha. So we ate super fast, said then still made it on time to our lesson.

We had a district meeting and I got to teach my first discussion to other missionaries. So there was something cool I saw while I was preparing for this. It was on personal revelation. The Lord, as we
follow spiritual prompting from the Holy Ghost, trusts us to continue showing our appreciation for this gift we received after baptism. If we actually follow the Holy Ghost, He trusts us to follow it continually and blesses us with added direction, purpose, and knowledge. But if we continually do not follow the Holy Ghost then Heavenly Father will not trust us with more revelation or the ability to gain further knowledge because He doesn't trust that we will pay attention. Of course He knows if we are going to pay attention, He knows our hearts. But He wants us to show faith. This is also why we need to pray. Heavenly Father knows what we want and what we need but he will give it to us only if we ask because that shows him we believe that He will.

I did struggle more this week than I have most other weeks. And how weird is that that I improved this week the most too. Oh what a weird coincidence. I don't know if you can read my sarcasm but honestly some people think that when bad things happen to them it's because God is upset with them or doesn't love them or forgot that they're going through hard times. But struggle is meant to be a part of our lives because it's how we learn, grow, and progress. If our life was completely perfect we would not know what happiness was. We couldn't comprehend it because we would have never been sad. Challenges happen because God loves you and remembers you, so stop telling God that he's awful because he forgot about you. 1 Nephi 21:14-16. God won't forget you.

But anyways, I've had a hard time with feeling like I was inadequate to teach people and I just had the biggest worry that because I am not a good teacher sometimes I was now an impediment to the exaltation of a child of God. And that was a heavy load for me. My trainer helped me though. As long as I do my best no matter what I am pleasing Heavenly Father. Because if I am doing my best it means I'm really trying to learn how to text and he'll help me get that down but also he isn't going to let my mistakes take away from the opportunities of another. He still has his agency just as if I had taught perfectly. We will all have our opportunity.

Yesterday I entertained rowdy children with the coolest magic trick ever! I had a kid completely convinced that if you blow on a tie it will collapse. And if you clap that it comes back to life. When he left I stopped but other kids were so rowdy that I didn't notice that he had grabbed my tie and was blowing on it so hard because it wouldn't fall over. He was so confused and when I noticed I could see that the magic in his eye was leaving. Like a kid having Disneyland characters ruined for him. So I grabbed my tie and said "oh no don't worry. It's broken but I'll fix it" and I blew a raspberry and then blew on it and I just did the trick again and then he was so happy:)

The Epistle of Taylor. September 27, 2016

The Epistle of Taylor
Chapter 1
1 For behold, the first transfer of the reign of President Griffon was nearing to an end as the Elders preached to the people in the land of Cottonwood. And the Elders were Elder Gray who was trained by Elder Townsend who did still remain in the land of Cottonwood. And Elder Miller who was of many lands, for he did move many times in his youth. And Elder Clough who was named District Leader of the land of Cottonwood. 
2 And the Elders began to see much success in the land of Cottonwood for behold the people began to repent of their sins and find much joy in their lives. For behold they began to come unto Christ and be baptized in His name.
3 But behold there was also much iniquity in the land. For there were those whom the Elders taught that did wish to no longer hear the words that the Lord. And thus the people were starved, but not of the flesh but of the spirit.
4 Now the Elders that labored in the land of Cottonwood were grieved in their hearts because of the sins of those people who did no longer desire to hear the words of the Lord. And the Elders prayed and fasted much that they might find those who did desire to repent and come unto Christ. 
5 Now after the Elders had done this they continued to find success in the land of Cottonwood. And the Elders did rest from their labors for behold the day was the last day of the first transfer of the reign of President Griffin and was called p-day.
6 And Elder Clough did depart from the land of Cottonwood down to the land of Peoria to preach the words of the Lord in that land and Elder Miller was named district leader over the land of Cottonwood. And Elder Gray with Elder Townsend did also remain in the land with Elder Miller.
7 And thus ended the first transfer of the reign of President Griffon

 This week really has been great though. The week really just started out with exchanges again. The district leader and I were up in Sedona and I saw one of the only two Golden Arches from McDonalds that aren't actually golden colored. This one was teal because of weird Sedona laws.I also ate dinner with an old Hispanic lady. It was frijoles y arroz con pollo con chile verde, beans, rice, and chicken with green sauce. It was good and then I took the first bite of chicken and thought "oh no!!" It was so spicy I started crying. She didn't notice and I didn't want to be rude so I ate all of it. The Spanish missionary was laughing at me cuz it was actually pretty funny.