Elder and Sister Bird (July 27, 2014)
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Yesterday was the Birds last Sunday. They fly out today. I'm staying here for another transfer with Elder Gordon. We had a whole bunch of people at church too. We finally got our family of young women back to church with their grandma. A super progressing young man was also able to come to church and he loved it. Everybody was so friendly and I bet he will be a great strength to the branch once he is baptized. His name is Michron, and I think I have told you about him before. He is truly somebody who was kept from the truth, only because he knew not where to find it. Training is going well, but I think I need to let Elder Gordon take the lead more. I need to keep him from relying on me too much. I think what you said about being obedient was inspired. I'm excited for this new transfer. It will be fun to get to know another area. I need to finish off strong here, because I think that I will be going to another place this next transfer. I pray for you guys multiple times a day. I know you are praying for me too. Love you!
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
My district went to help build part of one of the Kingstown Branches house flour. I carried some big heavy bags of cement mix down from the road and then we spent a few hours mixing it with sand and then pouring it out. I sure am glad that I have more options than that to look forward too. I was sore the next day. The highlight of the week had to be that Jadeese is starting to progress again. She had fallen back a bit and she wasn't keeping commitments. But recently I started to really try and improve my prayers and I saw that as I fervently prayed for her, she began to keep her commitments again. She had talked about how she didn't feel like she used to when we first met her and she was reading from the Book of Mormon everyday. She recognizes that she can be as happy as she was if she starts doing what she was doing before with reading and praying, etc. She wants to be happy again and she knows how to do it. I just hope I'm here when she gets baptized. We have been working with her for about 5 months. Let mom know that I'm pretty obedient, but I'm really trying to work on keeping missionary music in my mind. I also thought I should share about how the Holy Ghost comforted me as he brought something to my remembrance. I woke up a few days ago feeling a bit down, but then I was reminded of a part of the 4th verse in the hymn count your many blessings which says, "Do not be discouraged, God is over all". That really helped me to remember who it is that I am serving and that He truly is the master of all things. Consider the lilies of the field.
-Love, Seth-Love, Seth
Friday, July 11, 2014
I was thinking about how much of a blessing it truly is to be an American. I didn't get to do much 4th of July celebrating except for eating a hot dog at a medical student family's house. They are from Utah. I just finished the war chapters in the Book of Mormon and I found it really interesting about how the king men were "denying their own freedom". I thought to myself, in what ways do I deny my freedom? I guess I celebrated our freedom anyways, as I am out here declaring the ultimate message of freedom. Unfortunately, our "stripling warriors" have taken some big hits recently. It was Carnival this past week so the youth fell into some of the temptations that go with it. We are continuing to work with them and they are coming along. They just have to overcome some setbacks first. We found some super cool new people though this week. There is a family that we are teaching named the Ince's. We are mostly teaching Michron (20) one of the sons, but we also teach other family members when they are home. Michron is great. He loves the Book of Mormon, has received an answer that it is true, and the best part is that as we were teaching his mom last night, he bore his testimony of how the Book of Mormon is changing his life and his mother can know that the same way he knows it. I watched as she moved from being only mildly curious to really listening with her heart as her son bore a sincere testimony about what he has come to know to be true. That was awesome! As I am learning and becoming a better missionary, I can see myself going through mini pride cycles and each time I think like Nephi "O retched man am I". I'm really trying to be more humble. What are some things you and mom do to keep humble? Elder Gordon and I are still getting along well and are learning to teach in better unity each day. Tristan is coming along very well. He was ordained as a priest this past Sunday and I have seen such a tremendous change in him. He has the goal of becoming a missionary himself and today we are going to teach him about the temple and eternal marriages, to give him a goal for after he gets back from his mission. I am so glad I have been able to teach him. Looks like you guys had fun at Disneyland. That sounds so cool about the booth that you and mom helped out at. There was a great article in the Liahona this month called The Why of our Missionary work by Elder Anderson. I thought it would be great for you guys to read as you do member missionary work at home. Hurrah for Israel! The work is great! Did you go to church with Nicole, Geoffrey and Aunt Raylee. One more thing, I had a realization this week while getting ready one morning that I would be terribly sad if our family could not be together forever. Love you all!-Elder Parker
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
We also found this cool new shortcut that takes us from our house, through a jungle and a creek up to were most of our investigators live. I felt like Indiana Jones walking through there after moving sand bags up on top of a big hill with Michael and Nari.
It's starting the rainy season here. This week has been awesome! Miracles all over the place and our investigators are coming along very well. The closest person with a baptismal date is a young woman named Arusha (18) who has a baptismal date for the 12th of July. I think that she is ready right now. We just reviewed the restoration and she is flying through the Book of Mormon. The last time we checked she was in Enos and moving forward. She reads everyday and is great example to her other cousins who are starting to read more often. Next is Michael (15) with a baptismal date for the 19th of July. We meet with him almost everyday and he really looks up to us. We were talking yesterday about how he used to run from us, but one day he felt that he should come and meet with us and at least see what we were like. Now he is reading the Book of Mormon consistently, coming to church each week (except yesterday because of rain) and he is picking up on phrases like flee from temptation and choose the right. He knows a lot about the gospel and he will be a great missionary. Michael's sister, Lennise has a date for the 2nd of august and is also very prepared for that day. I never thought that these young people that we met over 4 months ago would be preparing for baptism and living the gospel, but they have truly manifested by their works that they have received of the spirit of Christ (D&C 20:37). There is another young man named Kevin who is preparing for baptism on the 9th of august along with the rest of the youth's cousin, Nari. Kevin is solid, but we need to work with Nari more before he will be ready. We are facing some struggles with Jadeese. She is feeling discouraged. Her baptismal date is July 26th. She isn't coming to church regularly and she is having a rough time at work, which is making her scared to move to the new place she found to live in. We are working with her though, so I have faith that things will work out. We also finally helped another Lady named Linda to commit to a baptismal date for august 2nd. I was super excited about that! Tristan is moving along really well, but he has had a difficult time focusing in lessons. He is living the commandments, reading the scriptures and is always at church though so I am not concerned for him. He is planning on going on a mission and is going to be ordained next week at church as a priest. It has been a great week full of challenges and successes. We also started teaching an awesome family that lives near the youth that we are teaching. We gave the oldest son Michron a Book of Mormon many weeks ago but then just this last week we went back and found out that he had read through the introduction, the testimonies of the 3 and 8 witnesses and also of the Prophet Joseph Smiths testimony all the way up into first Nephi were he is currently reading. He and his family all accepted the message of the restoration very well and I can't wait to see how they come along. I foresee great things for that family! We also found this cool new shortcut that takes us from our house, through a jungle and a creek up to were most of our investigators live. I felt like Indiana Jones walking through there after moving sand bags up on top of a big hill with Michael and Nari. Those are the highlights from the week. Things are going really well. Elder Gordon is cool too. We are becoming good friends and are working well together. I think I might have mentioned it in my email last week but as I am training, I reflect back on what I was like as a greenie. It makes me laugh, but it also makes me so much more grateful for my trainer. He was a great Elder. Looks like you guys had fun at Disneyland. Glad to see that Geoffrey was with you guys. Oh and Zone conference was excellent. President Mehr and Sister Mehr are great and know so much about the gospel. Hope he is doing well! Love you all! Read your scriptures everyday! Hurrah for Israel! Be RAD!!! Love,
This week I have learned a lot about leading. It has been funny and eye opening as I have seen what it must have been like for Elder Jacobson to have trained me. I am glad he was forgiving because there were many things that I did that he could have gotten mad at me for but didn't. Elder Gordon is a great Elder. He is a convert and was baptized when he was 12. At home he went out with the missionaries often, so he is a well-prepared missionary. He is 19 today. His hometown is where Bob Marley is from. His Mom and little brother are active members. We usually get our hair cut by our neighbor, Sister Bailey. Her husband is a med student at the medical college and they are from Utah. I have learned about how to make my own chicken wings and also how to make little fried balls of dough that taste really good. We are going to go play some American football today down by the airport after emailing. I learned how to play rugby and cricket last week. The missionaries from St. Lucia are here for zone conference so we should have a big fun game today. Glad to hear that you guys are having fun! Tell the Lhamons I say hello! Training is definitely a growing experience. The first few days I felt a little anxious but I'm getting into my stride so things should be going well. The youth are coming along fine and we have started to teach some of their other relatives. Something that Elder Gordon said yesterday in a fireside we gave stood out to me. He said we should "look at youth as who they can become, not who they are right now." That is how Heavenly Father sees us and that is how we should see each other. We have also started to work with Des again. We stopped meeting with him for a while but he is starting to make changes and move towards being baptized. Training is a humbling experience and I am realizing how much I need the Lords help to be successful. But just like it says in Ether 12:27 Heavenly Father will make our weaknesses our strengths as we rely on Him. The birds will be leaving soon and as far as I know, we don't have any senior couple lined up to take their spot. If you know anybody who is thinking of serving as senior missionaries, there is a spot in St. Vincent that is calling their name. Have fun and take some pictures of Pirates of the Caribbean for me!
Hurrah for Israel!