I could write an entire email just about one day! I don't know how I'm going to condense it all but here it goes!
So new years felt like it was a normal day just like most holidays but it was a good day. We had district meeting and talked about how to begin teaching and then Elder Johnson and I went and worked in Marshall for the rest of the day knocking doors and we meet with D. That evening we went over to our ward mission leaders home and he had out his telescopes and showed us how he could take pictures with his telescope! It was amazing! We looked at Orian's Nebula and also at Jupiter and you could see the moons around Jupiter too. Then we went on an exchange with the Longview 1st Elders. It was good. That next day we exchanged back and Elder Johnson and I went to the T's that evening. They were at their neighbors home who goes by R.D. and so we visited them and I talked to Sis. T. about temples and blessings and her life and it was a great visit. She asked for a blessing at the end of it to help her with all the crazy things going on in her life. She asked if I would be voice and I suggested that we pray and fast in preparation for it. She agreed to do so and then we scheduled a time to go back the next day. We ate cabbage and black eyed peas and ham for our first dinner of the year. R.D. said that the ham was for health and the peas and the cabbage were for money and good luck. It was good. R.D. has some very scientific theories and we ended up talking to him about the Pearl of Great Price. We gave them a copy and they were really interested.
The next day we went back to the T.'s and we had dinner with them and hot chocolate. We also gave Sis. T. a blessing and that went really well. Then we drove to Longview to stay the night with the 3rd ward elders and then go to the temple the next day! It was amazing! We got there before they got there so we pumped up an air mattress that we had found in our apartment's closet (you never know what treasures you will find in a new area from past missionaries!) Then the other Elders got there and had forgotten their apartment keys at their appointment but in the end we got in and slept great and woke up at 5 am the next day to drive to Dallas! I slept in the car because I was tired. We got to the temple at about 9 am and we went to the 10 am session! It was so good to be in the temple again! I miss the temple so much! I'm glad I went as much as I could before I left. It was amazing to be in the celestial room! I miss it so much! That's where I want to get our investigators! I hope they will be able to get there in a year!
Then on Saturday D. had her baptismal interview and she is getting baptized on the 11th! We are so happy for her and excited for her!
Then on Sunday we had such a busy day! It was amazing! We went to church and all of our meetings before it. In sacrament meeting Sis. T. and her son M. came to church! It made me so happy to see them there! I sat next to M. just as I had promised earlier that week. It made me so happy to be able to sit with them. At church we taught gospel principles because our ward mission leader was feeling sick. We taught the plan of salvation on the spur of the moment because we had no time to prepare to teach. It went really well. We had a part member family there and it was a good lesson. Then Elder Johnson and I went on splits to teach the Priests and the Decons about the Godhead which we were asked to do with an hours notice as we were walking into gospel principles. I went with the Priests and it was great thankfully they didn't expect me to teach the entire lesson and it turned into a really good discussion. Then right after church we left to go to our appointment with E. up in Jefferson. We went with Brother C. who was a really good match for taking to the lesson. He and E. had the same religious background, Baptist, and they got along really well. We had a great visit with them and talked about just how much the family is under attack these days. He had read in the Book of Mormon and he reads it at work on his lunch break. As long has he reads and prays then he will feel the spirit and it will convert him.
After our lesson with E. we went right back to Marshall to teach a potential investigator. We got there on time and we went right in and T. had read the pamphlet we left her and started asking questions and we started teaching her about the priesthood and how it was necessary for it to be restored. It was a great lesson and she was starting to understand authority. We taught her how she will know for herself if everything we taught was true and she said she would read the Book of Mormon and pray to know if it's true. We are going to be meeting with her a week from today.
I'm so blessed to be able to serve in Marshall! I love the ward and our investigators! We have had miracles happen and I'm excited to continue to see them. The Lord truly is hastening his work and you see it in small ways at first but that's how God works - small and simple means! I love y'all so much and hope y'all have a wonderful week! Remember to look for the miracles after the trial of your faith! They are there! Every Day!
I love y'all!
Love your missionary,
Elder Drew Bowen