Monday, February 17, 2014

Everyone Hatin' on California

Did you know that people on the East Coast generally don't like California? At least some of the folks I've met here. I didn't really realize that people would be impolite about it, I assumed that people would just kind of acknowlege that I was from CA and deal with it. But when you're a missionary people kind of assume being impolite is just the general way to talk to you.
Last week we were trying this inactive guy named D who I'd never met. The only notes on the Blue-and-Green Sheet (our book that we put all our notes on) is that he's a cool guy we should try back. So we do! I knocked on the door and it opens to reveal a guy with a beard straight out of Duck Dynasty. He lives, by the way, in a house that appears to be made of cinder block and plywood, and he doesn't invite us in because the house has fleas. But anyways we start talking to D and he seems to be pretty receptive, so we start talking about the church and what things are keeping him from coming back and then all of a sudden, he just starts asking a bunch of questions about guns. I don't know very much about guns, so I told him so. I told him I was from California, he said "Well darn* right you don't freaking* know a freaking* thing about guns!" Then he just starts trashing the good state of California with all sorts of slurs and the like, none of which shall I print here, while I attempted to direct the conversation back to something spiritual. But he would have none of it, and was working himself up into a little frenzy. So I just told him, "Look, I didn't leave my family for two years to talk about Californian politics! If you keep asking me questions about this kind of stuff it's not going to get you anywhere. I came here to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ." He looked at me, said some other unpleasant things,  and then kicked us off the porch. He was a couple shells short of a full cartridge, if you get my meaning. But that's cool. Some folks just get upset a little easily.
There is going to be a baptism next Saturday! It's for J, the daughter of a recent convert. She's 12 years old, and she wasn't interested when her dad got baptized last October. Then her brother got baptized in January, and she gradually decided she wanted to be as well! I haven't really taught her because she lives in the other elders' area, but she wants me to baptize her! So that's coming up! It was actually supposed to be last Saturday but the weather was too bad for them to get out to the church. That family is really the most humble family I have ever met. The dad, R, has really bad diabetes so he can't drive. They live in a house without working heat and the mom abandoned them a few years ago. So he takes care of them, and he is so excited to do everything he can to support the church. So it is gratifying to see his family slowly recieve the gospel and decide to follow their dad's example. 
In other news, we really do shoot ourselves in the foot sometimes. We've been saying for the longest time how we need to get a team-up with one of our investigators for her to progress. But it has been so tough, and we've been trying, but we just hadn't been able to make it work out. But yesterday we had Brother A, who was a teenage convert to the church from Catholicism, join us in our lesson with J, our Catholic investigator from Peru. She really opened up to him, asked him questions she hadn't felt comfortable asking us, and he was able to bear his testimony and everyone felt the Spirit. J did especially, and my companion was able to point that out. I feel like it was a really important step that needed to happen, so I'm glad it did. Yeaaah missionary work!
~ Elder Wright

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