Monday, September 28, 2015

Xandaman Update! Week 6

Dear diary,

This week has been a good one. Not because it was easy, but because we
have been doing a lot of learning and trying. I've been finding my
weaknesses and focusing on how to improve them with Elder Schneider.
Living by an airport and near a well used train track is something
I've become accustomed to now that I've been here for almost 4 weeks.
It's crazy to think I've been a missionary for about 6 weeks now. I'm
getting into the missionary life and becoming  comfortable with it.

There were a few temporal experiences I must mention that have
happened this week. We had Elder McCoy spend a day here at the
Guptills because he was sickly. His companion went on splits to get to
their set lessons that day. We met an awesome man named brother Marsh.
As we were helping him spread red mulch on his front lawn, he began to
reveal his history as a musician. He used to be the lead guitarist in
a band called, 'Midwest playboys'. He has about 8 or 9 different
guitars in his garage with a sweet little sound system setup. He also
showed us his shed where he wanted to build a studio, but now is full
of his kids' stuff as well as his amazing murals he's painted! They
are really good. He then sent us off with a beautiful rendition of
'How Great Thou Art' on the keyboard. I love meeting awesome people
like that.

One of the most hilarious events of the week that is now an inside
joke happened at the peaceful little Belgrade library. We do service
there every week, and this week we had to pick up all the fallen crab
apples. She gave us a thin plastic garbage bag to use. Elder Schneider
and I got the rakes and the shovel and filled that bag up maybe a
little too much. As I watched elder Schneider pick up the bag and
start swiftly walking to the dumpster, the bag began to fail. He
started going faster, but it was too late. All the stupid crab apples
exploded out of the bottom of the bag and spread across two parking
spaces. It was hilarious. I was busting up laughing. We got it cleaned
up soon after, and learned from our mistake and used the wheel barrow.

Last Monday and Tuesday  we had Elder Topham (one of the four
assistants) join us. He set us in the right direction and showed us
some great examples of how we should strive to be. One thing that he
told me to do and what I have been working on is 'focus on one thing
at a time'. As we were with him and throughout the past weeks, I've
been able to identify some of my weaknesses. The wrong way to improve
is to tackle them all at once. If you just focus on the hardest thing
for you and work on improving that, you will always be improving
yourself. Don't stress about everything that you aren't good at or
what frustrated you. You must be patient and press forward with faith.

We have spent a little time at night sitting out by park or the pond
doing ward council calls/setting up member lessons. It feels great to
take in the wonder of the sky with the stars and the blood moon, and
the valley between the mountains. I agree with what many people that
I've talked to have said, which is they feel closer to God being
outside. All of the creations around us were created through Gods

It's amazing that we as spiritual beings in a human experience
get the authority to use Gods power is amazing. Like I've said before,
sometimes the power of God is so prevalent in a situation you can
almost touch it. I love to witness those experiences.

One last message to remember. Christ is coming again. Elder
Degraffenried in his departing testimony to his zone stated, "we all
know this day is coming. The day is coming that we will have to go
home." One one level that is for us as missionaries. We should be
doing everything we can before we have to leave. One another level, we
know that the day of Christ's return is coming. "Don't let it be a
surprise to you." We should know to live our lives to prepare for that
day, and help others prepare for that day as well. That is what our
purpose is, to invite and help others come into Christ, and gather the
elect of Israel to welcome Him. May we all have an eternal perspective
of life.

Elder Wylie
At the airport

New experiences!

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