Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord

William James Jones has been called to serve a two-year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ ofLatter-day Saints in the New York Rochester Mission from November 2012 to November 2014.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Next to last interview with President Francis -good gospel conversations with people

27 October 2014

This week was way awesome and some really awesome things happened!  So yea we pretty much got fed by investigators every day it was insane.  Monday we got fed by this couple who aren't really interested but like to feed missionaries so yea they let us leave a message but they still aren't too interested in changing.   Tuesday was interviews my 2nd to last one before I go home.    We also FINALLY got in with this less active part member family in Eden and they fed us steak it was way good.  He hasn't been to church for like 25 years and she isn't a member but we had a good gospel conversation with them and they set up a time to come back in November!  Also I've been making a little headway with an investigator by talking to him on Facebook.  He's trying to convert us to becoming Jehovah witnesses so it's kind of interesting.   He under estimated my knowledge of the scriptures though and so we had a good conversation.  He was pretty snarky but there was no bible bashing.  I got him thinking about how there was so many scriptures and books missing from the current bible that we have and pretty much just read the Book of Jude to show how much is missing.   Interestingly however Jehovah Witnesses don't believe in a spirit world or even that departed spirits are conscious after death but that they are all asleep before the final judgement.   I asked about the parable of Lazarus (Luke 16) and just to see what would happen I asked about the story of the witch of Endor( 1 Samuel 28) and Ecclesiastes 12:7.  But anyways yea I'll have to tell more back home. Then Friday was interesting.  We taught a lesson through the phone with some guy called Anthony who we had called the week before.  It was very strange we prayed with him through the phone and then we read 3 Nephi 11 with him and we talked about it.  It went pretty well and he liked it and he even set up a time to call him again next Friday at six again!  It was pretty weird but pretty awesome.  We'll figure something out with him.  Saturday we got fed at 3:00 and at 5:30 so we were like way stuffed two different investigators took us out to eat.  We are making some progress with them.  Sunday was awesome President Francis came and taught the third hour of sacrament and it went well.  He talked about how members can do missionary work.  The gospel principles class was pretty interesting though and it got pretty heated in it but oh well it's Cattargus!  Anyways It's my last week pretty nuts!!!  

Hey I still got two weeks!
I'm gonna go and make the most of it!

20 October 2014

This week was pretty awesome and nuts and just unique.   To start off I got to go to Niagara Falls on Pday!  It was pretty fun!  I got to see Canada as well and apparently the Canadian side is the better view but the view I still got was pretty good!   Niagara falls is pretty ghetto though and the Canadian side looked a lot more fancy from what I could see.   

Tuesday we had Elder Hamula from the seventy come speak to us in the Buffalo zones.  He gave a talk at last general conference  and he was pretty awesome.  We got to do a Q and A with him and some pretty good questions with pretty good answers were given.   The one that was way good was this one Elder asked if having baptisms and being a zone leader or Assistant to the president was a sign of a successful mission.   This certain missionary actually had served in Brazil for like 9 months but got reassigned to New York due to health problems and apparently in Brazil he was told that so pretty deep.  Elder Hamula answered by saying something that I remember that President Christianson said to me when I first came out.  He said that every missionary should have one convert when they go home and that should be THEMSELVES.  He also said that the whole district leader zone leader assistant thing is more for the missionary than for leadership skills which I actually had thought about before in how some missionaries really cleaned up their act in being given those leadership responsibilities.  I've heard some pretty sketchy things happening in Brazil and I'm glad that I"m not serving over there.   I don't believe that baptizing someone into activity is in anyway a good thing.  In fact I believe it's actually worse than not having them baptized at all as now that individual is under covenants with God and NOT keeping them.  At the same time, however, baptism is an important thing and should be strived for and set as a goal early in the teaching process (preferably the first lesson depending on the situation).  Earlier is better then later so that they can progress quicker and get the gift of the Holy Ghost BUT if they aren't keeping commitments and if they don't understand what they're really getting into then in my opinion they shouldn't be getting rushed into baptism.   Anyway I digress.  He also called a lot of missionaries to repentance and said they should be getting up on time and using their time properly and should strive for exact obedience.  I'm so grateful Mom and Dad got me those work out dvd's.  They have been such a good tool in getting me to stay awake and also for giving me like a ton of energy through the day.  They are also why I haven't gained any weight on the mission too but that's just a bonus.  I'm glad me and Elder Bennett are being obedient to that before hand.  

One missionary asked a question about how we can place more trust in Christ than ourselves and Elder Hamula answered it in a really interesting way.  He said that we should have trust in Christ and Ourselves.  He said that Christ's grace gives us the confidence and divine assistance so that we can trust in ourselves and that he can work through our actions.  That was pretty interesting view which makes complete sense because if you really think about it.  If you want to obey Christ's commandment for instance then you have to have the confidence in yourself to even keep it!  Nephi is the perfect example of this.  He says I will go and do -  not just I will sit and wait for God to do things for me.   Nephi through Christ's Grace was able to go and receive divine assistance to achieve the task that God had given to go and obtain the plates.   

The rest of the week a ton of people canceled it was pretty sad but we did the best with what we had.   We tracted a lot in the Angola lakeshore part.  There's a whole lot of beach bums there so they're pretty chill.  We had the regular tracing oddities like talking to a completely high guy and having a completely naked kid answer the door ha ha.   This one guy also came outside and was like a hippie or something and he gave us a hug and told us that he was a lay Methodist preacher and that he loved us and what we did and wanted us to keep on going and gave us a fist pump and went inside and closed the door.   But we also had some good conversations with people too and got a couple of potential investigators.   

Then on Saturday me and Elder Bennett got tired of tracting and it was raining so we went to the car and decided to do something I've never ever done before.  We decided to go through our phone and call everyone in it to see if we could pick up some investigators.   It was pretty awesome!   Our phone had over 500 contacts in it so we didn't realize it would take this long but we called everyone from the A's to the C's and it took two hours!   And we did some more of it yesterday.  This phone number has been a missionary phone number for a long time so we talked to some people that hadn't seen missionaries in years.  Almost all of these people we had no records or anything on.    We talked to a guy who lived in this town called Geneva which is like 3 hours away from where we are and he's been an eternigator for 50 years who still meets with missionaries and he talked to me for like half an hour on like everything.   I also talked to this one lady and she was like yea I'm not really interested but I had the missionaries come over and mow my lawn and they played video games and I was like ummmm this is awkward ha ha.  We also talked to this one guy who set up an appointment for us to read the Book of Mormon with him over the phone this Friday so that will be interesting.  I can't say that I have ever taught a lesson over the phone before but no reason why not!  We also talked to some RM missionary who lives in Utah whose number was for some reason in the phone too.   However we didn't realize though that we had left the lights on and our truck ran out of juice so we had to have a member come jump start the car for us!  

The directory clean up meetings that we had are finally over and everyone as been assigned members to go and see (the directory has over 300 members on it).  

I can't believe I only have two weeks left.  It's nuts how fast the time has gone but I try not to think about it at all as I don't like to think that my mission is almost up.  But hey I still got the two weeks!  I'm gonna go and make the most of it!  

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