April 11, 2016
Well hello my wonderful amigos! It is a beautiful day here in Abilene, TX despite the intense thunderstorm last night! We got hit with a pretty good one! We went outside on our little balcony thing to take it all in and I almost got the crap kaboomed out of me. Literally. Pretty intense stuff there for a minute. So I went inside to get my camera to get some on video, and the thunder never had a big KABOOM again. So that was a total disappointment! Oh well, life goes on!
This week was pretty interesting. Some sweet stuff happened. First things first, our investigator Nick got baptized on Saturday! And I use the term "our" very loosely. I literally didn't teach him a single time. In fact, his baptismal interview was the second time I saw him and I didn't even teach him a single lesson. But, it was still cool. We weren't sure if he was going to be baptized or not until about Thursday so it was a pretty intense week for Elder Lund..... tbh I barely thought of him since I had barely even met him. Elder Lund talked to him on the phone every day however and he had a challenging but nonetheless confirming week leading up to Saturday! He definitely put forth fruits of repentance and had a strong desire to be baptized for all the right reasons! The baptismal interview went well. Very very long, but well. The missionary doing the interview was doing his first one and he is kind of a nutcase, but he is also incredibly smart. So he actually conducted a very good interview and they had some wonderful discussion that really helped Nick! But that was definitely unnerving sitting there for over an hour waiting for that thing to end. Usually those things take about 15ish minutes or so, so an hour was definitely a little strange.
The service was a little interesting as well! Nick and his family were about 30 minutes late! His daughter is in a crazy cast for her broken femur so they had to do some shopping to find something to sit her down in for the service and that held them up way longer than is was supposed to. Nothing they could control! But once they showed up we got everything going quickly and got the show on the road! Nick had an awesome experience being baptized and being confirmed yesterday! So I am thoroughly looking forward to being able to teach him all the new member lessons and working with him moving forward!
We had Zone Conference down in San Angelo on Thursday! It was fantastic to get to go back down to the old stomping grounds of two weeks ago! I decided that San Angelo was just fantastic going back down there. Definitely a solid place. Anyway, zone conference was a little nerve racking for myself........ I got a call earlier in the week from one of the assistants saying that President Heap had an assignment for me to instruct at the conference................................. great. I've never instructed more than 8 people and so I went from that to two full zones (almost 40 missionaries), all the senior couples, the assistants, and President and Sister Heap. So the first 4 hours or so were fun just sitting there waiting. Ok, that’s an exaggeration. It really wasn't that bad. I would think about it every once in a while and get a few little butterflies, but nothing too bad. I was assigned the topic "The why and how of the baptismal invitation on the first lesson". Once I got up there I went from being a little antsy and nervous to beast mode and just tore it up. Well, tore it up about as much as you can with a topic like that.
I felt like it went pretty well and felt like I was able to give the missionaries something to think about and some really good ways to more effectively go about inviting people to be baptized on the first lesson. And our role plays along with it were pretty good too! I invited the missionaries to try to learn more from being the investigator than anything else and we had some good evaluation on that! Overall it went pretty well! Lots of participation and I saw lots of note taking and lots of people came up and told me that they learned a lot from it! So I feel like I did my job! It was good to be with the missionaries from my current zone as well as lots of missionaries from my time in the San Angelo zone the last few transfers! I felt right at home at the conference with all of them and being in the San Angelo chapel! Also, it was good to hear Elder Ahnder's story about giving a blessing to a cat again. LOL! I'll tell you that one when I get home!
Random cool thing from this week. We did some service out in Buffalo Gap (pretty cool tiny town... look it up) and I put up a bunch of drywall/sheet rock! There were two of us, and it was quite the experience. Definitely wanna give some props to Taco Carl for doing nearly that whole basement of ours mostly by himself! Nice work, pops!
During Nick's baptismal interview there was a SWEET tri-stake YSA dance happening in the gym. Hahahaha so funny! That thing was so lame! Kid you not, one time we walked by the doors and every single person was just sitting there staring at each other and not a single person was dancing! Hahaha! People kept coming out to the lobby to talk to us because they wanted to escape! We talked to some pretty sweet people though. So that was cool for us to kill time during that hour long interview. Oh man, I needed to be at that dance so bad to put some life and electricity onto that dance floor. The things I could've done for the welfare of that activity were unreal. Oh well, that'll have to wait!
Well folks, I really don't have much else to talk about this week. We taught a couple new investigators but nothing has come of it yet. We had to spend a lot of time in the truck this week going here and there as well so a lot of time was eaten up with all that. Hopefully we can get rid of some of that this week. However, we are driving up to Lubbock on Thursday morning to do exchanges with the assistant for Thursday and Friday, so that should be fun! And it will also take us out of our area a lot, but we will survive!
I hope y'all will have a wonderful week! May the good Lord bless you as you look forward with an eye of faith to marvelous things! I love y'all!
God bless ya!Lots of Love,
Elder Reed Ericson
Picture: Road trippin' to San Angelo with Elder Lund, Elder Hanson, and Elder VanWeerd!!!