Monday, September 29, 2014

September 15, 2014 (Oops. Sorry this is out of order.)

Mom, Dad, and Family,

Saturday was the first time in my life that I had heard Brother Robbins sing.  I've known him almost 19yrs and didn't know he could sing until I came out on my mission.  One of the people who danced what he sang accompanied me for Bring Him Home--he's a guy in my ward.  He's a really good guy.  But anyway, Bro Robbins did a really great job and he nailed all of his notes (he had some pretty high ones).

Sounds like school is going well back home.  Man, I miss going to school.  Often times I wish personal study on the mission was extended to two hours, because one isn't a lot of time to study the gospel.  I never thought I'd actually say that.  I mean, I've always loved studying the gospel, but I had never really consistently for more than 15mins a day or so.  Now I know what it's like to study it for longer, I don't think I could ever go back.  I try and rush the morning schedule just so I can get to personal study early; then at the end of the day, we try and do planning as quickly as possible so I can get ready for bed and read before bedtime.  I have grown to love the scriptures so much and I wish there was more time to read them.  There is so much material to study and learn from, it's insane.

I'm excited to hear about how the auditions go for Rylie.  Sounds like she's improved a lot and she's doing really good.  You'll have to let me know how things go.  Also, when Robyn's invented a robot that can do household chores, have her send it to me.  I could really use it out here.  I think it would be great.  And sounds like Taylor's grabbing the bull by the horns with school as well.  That's awesome!

This week was great.  We had some miracles happen and it was just awesome.  First off.  We had a really slow day Thursday (like painfully slow), so we did a lot of tracting and weren't able to teach anyone.  But on our way back, we saw Marie.  Our last lesson didn't exactly go stellar with Marie and we were trying to figure out a way to recover.  She called out to us and we stopped and talked for a little while.  It was really good and helped some things.  She didn't come to church this Sunday, but things are looking a little better.

We were also scared about Sharon.  We had called her a couple times during the week and we thought she had dropped us.  So when we went over Friday, we were super anxious to see how she was doing.  We had thought maybe she got anti-ed or something in her family had happened or she just lost interest.  We knocked on her door, and no one answered.  We were super put out because she had seemed so solid the week before.  So we kind of hung our heads and started to mope.  But we decided we should ring the doorbell anyway (missionaries always try at least twice; once for their salvation, once for ours).  Well turns out she was home and waiting for us, she had water waiting for us and her Book of Mormon out and ready to go.  She had taken notes to outline the chapter, cross referenced it with the bible, and had questions written down for us to answer.  It was really cool.  She even said she wanted to read the testimonies of Joseph Smith and the witnesses.  We didn't really mope after that.  It was a great experience.

The Howards also came to church.  Brother Howard works on Sundays and the ward has tried everything to get him to come to church.  He says he wants to come, but then he never shows up, even when he promises he will.  Last week (not last week, but the week before) we did everything we could think of to get him out to church and he didn't come.  So when he promised to come this week, we were rather skeptical.  But he came with his daughter in law and his grandkids.  It was awesome.  First time in over a year and a  half.  Haley, wants to be baptized (she's 8) and we think it'll be good motivation to keep him active.  It was an awesome day.

Thinks look good this week.  We have some people we have plans to go see and were excited to see them.  Thanks for all you do.  The prayers mean a lot to me.  They really do.  I love and pray for you all.  I miss you and think of you all often.  Keep on keepin' on.

Elder Russell

P.S.  Next week we go to the temple, so President is moving P-Day to Thursday instead of Monday.  So, I won't be able to email for 10 days instead of 7.  Also, I know I've already mentioned it, but please please go do Grandpa Josip's work.  I would really like to go through the temple for him and I only get to go through the temple every 6mos.  Love you all.

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