Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Last Week! What? How did that Happen?

My last zone conference

Sounds like a really crazy week.  Now the strawberries are behind you, so you can relax, right?  I would love to sub for you Mom.  Anything to help!!  And it will help me keep up my teaching skills.  I think it will be much easier to teach a lesson when I don't have to worry about balancing it with my companion.

There is always a lot that happens, and so little time to write it all!!  

Last Monday we went to see Dr./Brother Hayden (he was in my ward in Parkway) to get Sister Liljenquist fixed.  He worked his magic and she was a lot better this week.  I think she is just exhausted from the work this last 18 months and it is taking it's toll.  We then went on a road trip to The Woodlands with one of Sister Liljenquist's recent converts from her last ward and a few other girls.  She really wanted to go to the Texas store and get a bunch of stuff.  I found a children's book about Tex R Masaurus, the dinodillo.  It was hilarious.  One day I will read it to you.  We got frozen yogurt and then came home.  

Sister Liljenquist was doing a song for zone conference on Wednesday and the mission president fireside on Sunday, so she needed to practice with the elders that were accompanying her.  Elder Griffith played for zone conference. He is hilarious.  Fun guy to work with.  Then we practiced the other song with Elder Yanzon, he is so nice. He keeps saying he needs to practice so he doesn't distract from Sister Liljenquist's beautiful singing with his horrible playing.  Not true, he is great.  Then we had an enjoyable afternoon with the district and did some finding.  We met some cool people, and even one who says she believes in the Greek gods.  That was interesting.  Then we had a late dinner with some members and went home.

On Tuesday we had all these appointments set up and had two members coming with us and they all fell through.  Even plan z fell through.  We even had a cute baby to use as bait to talk to people, but no one was around so that didn't work.  It was rough.  We did some more contacting before dinner, which was very delicious, before going out again and meeting with a recent convert for the first new member lesson.

Can you find Sis Hudgens?
Wednesday we had zone conference in The Woodlands (but not with The Woodlands zone).  We all got Tiwis installed in our cars and Brother Ott from Church Headquarters came to talk about them.  Tiwi is this little black box that goes in our car that tells us if we are going too fast, don't have our seat belt on, if we hit a bump too fast, and a bunch of other stuff.  Brother Ott was so funny though, that it made our whole outlook of the Tiwi change.  Goes to show, that it really is how you present something.  Sister Liljenquist filled up a few pages in her quote book, just from his presentation. It was awesome.  I also had to give my dying testimony since I am going home, and lucky me got to go first.  President said we had less than five minutes and that was fine with me.  I always get so nervous to speak in front of so many people like that.  I knew I was going to give me testimony though, so I had thought a lot about it this week.  I decided to read a poem that I heard at the beginning of my mission, "The Touch of the Master's Hand"

The Touch of the Masters Hand

'Twas battered and scarred,
And the auctioneer thought it
hardly worth his while
To waste his time on the old violin,
but he held it up with a smile.

"What am I bid, good people", he cried,
"Who starts the bidding for me?"
"One dollar, one dollar, Do I hear two?"
"Two dollars, who makes it three?"
"Three dollars once, three dollars twice, going for three,"

But, No,
From the room far back a gray bearded man
Came forward and picked up the bow,
Then wiping the dust from the old violin
And tightening up the strings,
He played a melody, pure and sweet
As sweet as the angel sings.

The music ceased and the auctioneer
With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said "What now am I bid for this old violin?"
As he held it aloft with its' bow.

"One thousand, one thousand, Do I hear two?"
"Two thousand, Who makes it three?"
"Three thousand once, three thousand twice,
Going and gone", said he.

The audience cheered,
But some of them cried,
"We just don't understand."
"What changed its' worth?"
Swift came the reply.
"The Touch of the Masters Hand."

"And many a man with life out of tune
All battered and bruised with hardship
Is auctioned cheap to a thoughtless crowd
Much like that old violin

A mess of pottage, a glass of wine,
A game and he travels on.
He is going once, he is going twice,
He is going and almost gone.

But the Master comes,
And the foolish crowd never can quite understand,
The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought
By the Touch of the Masters' Hand.

- by Myra Brooks Welch

So basically I read this, said a few words and sat down.  It was great :)  People said they liked it, so that must mean I did something right!  On the way home from the conference we stopped at the restaurant that one of my investigators from The Woodlands opened up, The Tamale Pot.  It was good, and she chatted with us and gave us our food for free!!  So nice.  Hopefully once she gets used to running her shop, she will have time to meet with the sisters again.  We then went tracting and we met a rude lady and the nicest atheist I have ever come in contact with.  Good day.

Pacie & Me
Thursday was super busy.  We went to the Arboretum in the morning and pulled some more weeds, always good. Then we changed at the mission office, got some lunch and saw a semi active family.    I planned with their 4 year old daughter while Sister Liljenquist spoke with the parents.  Fun times.  Then we saw Betty.  She is progressing!!  She is reading her scriptures and she even edited her language.  She is trying really hard, we could tell.  Our goal is to get her to church before we leave.  

No cigarettes for Jeremiah
We then went to dinner and then met the district for a finding blitz.  Everyone in the district met in our area to go finding.  We gave instructions, said a prayer and went off!! We were not having much luck and Sister Liljenquist was almost crying because her head hurt so bad, so we said a prayer.  In my head I heard, "Go, she needs you", so I thought that meant go home.  We go to exit the neighborhood and I look to the right and I think I see someone we know, so I turn. It is one of the recent converts we have been working with to go to the temple.  We pull over to talk to him and see a cigarette in his hand.  Sister Liljenquist takes it and stomps it out, we demand the rest and then we ask for his wallet so he can't buy more. We ended up leaving him with his wallet after he pinkie promised to not smoke anymore.  It was a miracle we found him.  I realize now that the Spirit was saying HE needs you, not she.  It is awesome when you can see the Spirit work through you :)

Friday was great.  We had district meeting in the morning and then we met with Jeremiah again to talk about why he is smoking when he wants to go to the temple.  He brought another member with him, one of his friends.  Sister Liljenquist and I ended up having two separate conversations because they both are going through things and needed some help.   We then went to a members house to try and make scripture flashcards for two people we are trying to get to quit smoking and go to the temple.  It didn't go very well, I ended up just being mad at the computer.  We then went to dinner, getting lost and driving up and down the street 3 times before we found the complex.  Fun stuff.

Random Holly-ness
 random message she saw on a mailbox

Saturday Sister Liljenquist wasn't feeling well in the morning, so I watched Book of Mormon seminary  videos.  Our noon appointment canceled, so I called out lunch appointment and she said we could come earlier.  She then texted back, "Would u like 2 be witness @ a noon wedding in Bishop Lynes office & maybe teach 1st discussion after? Phone me 4 details"  Sister Liljenquist and I both looked at each other and her like, "What?!?!?!?"  So of course we called her back.  We ended up going to a wedding on Valentines day for people we didn't know, showed them around the chapel afterwards, had some lunch, and they said they loved our church and would love to look into it.  It was super awesome.  

We then had a great lesson with the Mirandas, a ward missionary, and the elders so we could start transitioning them over since the elders will be teaching Sarah when we leave.  It was a good lesson and I thought it went well until Sarah didn't come to church (she wanted to take the day off) right after we taught her to keep the Sabbath day holy!!!  Come on Sarah!  We then went to a members house and finally got our flash cards done.  Plus we had red velvet Oreo balls.  Soooo good.  We had a delicious dinner and played with a puppy and went finding.  Good day.

On Sunday we had ward correlation, scared Sister Miranda half to death when we came over to drop off all the extra clothes in our apartment (two trash bags full) so she could have church clothes, did some studying, and went to church.  Brother Rucker says that we are speaking next Sunday, but hasn't cleared it with the Bishop yet and so doesn't have a topic for us. He did ask how many people we would call to repentance if we spoke though.  We said as many as you want, we don't care, we are leaving.  He seemed pretty happy about that.  

After church we practiced the song for the fireside one more time, had lunch and a conversation about life with a 15 year old boy, and then went to the fireside to be in the missionary choir.  I played the flute while Sister Liljenquist sang and Elder Yanzon played the piano. It is a good thing my part wasn't that important because I totally messed up.  The mouth piece wasn't on right when I went to play so I missed the first part, and then I kind of struggled at another part, but I got the last part right and that is all anyone remembers anyway.  Everyone is nice anyway and no one would say I did a terrible job. People came up later and told me it was great, while Elder Griffith was like, "I saw you were struggling, so I prayed for you."  thanks Elder, thanks for knowing that I messed up.  The intent was good though.  Then we went home and I fell asleep exhausted.

So I guess I am coming home next Wednesday, that doesn't seem right.  I still don't feel like it will actually happen, but I guess it will.  So...see y'all soon!

Sister Hudgens