Hello. This week was the absolute worst until yesterday. We had a bunch of people cancel on us so we didn't teach very much. Basically the whole week we were saying, “Well what should we do next?” We did 13 hours of service so I guess that was alright. We did some tracting, but it was not successful at all. We tried to see the investigator who lives in the super sketchy mobile home. We brought a member with us so she could meet someone in the church. We got there and he goes, “What is this? Look- they got a fan going in the window.. in winter… They have to be cooking up something in there. This looks like a crack house. Yeah. You guys should probably not come back here." We knock on the door and I think like 5 or 6 people live in there because it’s always someone else who answers. She wasn't home. So we said, “Okay do you have a number we could call her with?" The lady said, “No I don’t know her that well." What? You don't know the person you share a small mobile home with? Then We went back a couple days later. This guy answers the door and says she's not home. We said okay. Do you have her number... No. We asked when she'd be back. He said he doesn't know maybe a couple days. After we walked away I said to my companion. "This can only mean one thing... They killed her!" <--sarcasm. I said all the signs lead up to it. She disappeared, they "don't know her that well", they keep giving us the run around, and they live in a crack house. I said they must be really nervous because they probably thought no one would know she is missing. So that's my theory I will let you all know the truth as I find the facts out. Saturday morning we went and did an "ivy pull." I guess ivy is this plant that is invasive and it is everywhere. It grows all over the ground and up the trees. It is like a vine type thing. Anyway, I think it looks pretty and it is an enormous pain to pull out. But there is this crazy guy who I guess hates ivy. He even went as far as to make a YouTube video about how to kill it. He does ivy pulls and once a month our zone goes and pulls out a bunch of ivy and blackberry bushes which are the absolute worst. Blackberry bushes have huge thorns all over them and they are a vine that gets all tangled up and they stab you all the time. Anyway we were dying laughing because this anti ivy guy had us come out and tells us where to pull ivy out. We think he had a bad experience with ivy when he was a kid so he hates it now. Kinda like batman and bats I guess. But he gatheres us all together and pumps us up to GO GET SOME IVY! Hahahahha. He wasn't yelling, but he said, “Alright everyone. We are going to get in a line and walk across the forest and pull out every frikin piece of ivy we see" hahaha. I was trying so hard not to laugh. Then after an elder came up to me and he is a samoan guy from Australia. He said, “Hey mate. Did you start dying laughing when he said "frikin ivy?" It was super funny. Then On Sunday we went to see this new investigator. She said we could come back on Sunday. We tracted into her/ her husband. We weren’t expecting to get anywhere because whoever we tract into who says come back, isn't home or isn't interested and it's always really lame. So our expectations weren't high. Then we get there and they let us in their home and we taught the restoration. It was awesome. They said we could come back and they loved having us over and what not. Elder Hill and I after were talking and we were like, when he said come in I didn't know what to do and then We taught them a lesson... That was crazy that has never happened before. We came to the conclusion that on both of our missions, til that point we had never had a legit lesson with someone at a return appointment we set with them at their door. It was great. It seems too good to be true so we will see next week what happens. Then later on Sunday we talked to this crazy lady. She was kinda fat and very crazy. She told us she was pagan so she worships Satan, but she also said she worships God and she also said she believes in Japanese culture of honoring your ancestors I was about to invite her to family history class on Sunday, but she said if we showed her a picture of our ancestors she would pray to them... So I thought maybe not invite her to family history class. She spoke Japanese too. She was teaching us some of it. She also said that she believes that tree is God and that grass is God and that everything around us is God. I was really tempted to ask if the dumpage I left In the toilet that morning was God, but I figured I better not. That could be interpreted as rude I guess. We talked to her for like 45 minutes so it was interesting. That was my week. In case you were wondering about missionary work here as far as baptisms go... In October we, as a mission, had 14 baptisms which is about 2 per year for each companionship. Which is garbage. Then in December we, as a mission, had around 35 and in January we as a mission had 31. So we have had a significant improvement since October so President Ballard is pretty excited about it. Our mission was the lowest baptizing in the north west area, but I don't think it is anymore. So that is pretty awesome.
"On October 6, in the year 1536, a pitiful figure was led from a dungeon in Vilvorde Castle near Brussels, Belgium. For nearly a year and a half, the man had suffered isolation in a dark, damp cell. Now outside the castle wall, the prisoner was fastened to a post. He had time to utter aloud his final prayer, “Lord! open the king of England’s eyes,” and then he was strangled. Immediately, his body was burned at the stake. Who was this man, and what was the offense for which both political and ecclesiastical authorities had condemned him? His name was William Tyndale, and his crime was to have translated and published the Bible in English.
Tyndale was a devoted student of the Bible, and the pervasive ignorance of the scriptures that he observed in both priests and lay people troubled him deeply. In a heated exchange with a cleric who argued against putting scripture in the hands of the common man, Tyndale vowed, “If God spare my life, ere many years I will cause a boy that driveth the plough, shall know more of the Scripture than thou dost!”
William Tyndale was not the first, nor the last, of those who in many countries and languages have sacrificed, even to the point of death, to bring the word of God out of obscurity. We owe them all a great debt of gratitude. We owe perhaps an even greater debt to those who faithfully recorded and preserved the word through the ages, often with painstaking labor and sacrifice--Moses, Isaiah, Abraham, John, Paul, Nephi, Mormon, Joseph Smith, and many others. What did they know about the importance of scriptures that we also need to know? What did people in 16th-century England, who paid enormous sums and ran grave personal risks for access to a Bible, understand that we should also understand?
In Tyndale’s day, scriptural ignorance abounded because people lacked access to the Bible, especially in a language they could understand. Today the Bible and other scripture are readily at hand, yet there is a growing scriptural illiteracy because people will not open the books."
-D. Todd Christofferson
Think of how amazing it is to be able to carry thousands of pages of scripture In your pocket. However, it doesn't do any good if you don’t read it! So read it!