Monday, March 24, 2014

Incredible Week!

     Where to start. To start off I'll tell you the best parts of the week. This week we had eight investigators at sacrament meeting today. Not just eight non-members, but eight investigators that we are currently teaching! It was incredible. The Bishop and other ward members were amazed by how many people were at Church that Sunday. One of the big reasons I think that so many of our investigators were at sacrament was because I told them all that I was "preaching" this Sunday. Haha. Two weeks ago Brother Tackett asked me to give a talk on prayer.  Surprisingly it was the first time that I've spoken in a sacrament meeting on my mission. I thought that I would have been asked to speak a lot more. I was very grateful to have the opportunity to speak. 
      My amount of preparation for the talk was minimal...  I just did not want to worry about giving a talk in sacrament. We met with Brother Tackett on Friday night and he asked me how my talk was coming along, and I told him that I needed him to print out the Conference talk that he wanted me to reference. Haha. He was surprised that I hadn't started preparing it yet. I told him that I was planning on sharing a few stories and scriptures. He told me that I was going to be the third speaker and will need to have an "adjustable" talk in case the people speaking before go either too long or too short. I told him that I could do that. 
      Sunday came and the people speaking with me were Annie Barthelus, and Sister Keanum. Sister Keanum is one of my favorite people in the ward, I love her to death. Her and Brother Keanum are the coolest and are so easy to make laugh. Sister Keanum expressed to me earlier in the week how nervous she was about speaking in sacrament meeting. I told her not too worry, if she goes short that I could fill in the time. She surely accepted my offer... Haha. Our sacrament service starts at 10AM. Annie was the first speaker and she spoke for about five minutes. Then Sister Keanum spoke and took up just a little over five minutes. HAHA. When it was my turn to speak the clock was at 10:30. No Joke. Haha. Members from the congregation were looking at me during the intermediate song tapping their watches and started to giggle a little bit. I was in for a long discourse... 
        As I was walking up to the pulpit the Bishop grabbed me and told me that he could take up some time at the end if needed. As I got up to the pulpit the spirit just took over and I said all that needed to be said. I spoke for the whole period of time and it just flew by. I told three different stories from my mission about prayer and told of Joseph Smith's experience with prayer. I recited the first vision over the pulpit and the spirit was palpable. You could hear a pin drop. Surprisingly I took up the whole time without having to search for words to say. I really really enjoyed speaking. 
        After the talk I had three different members come up to me and tell me that they have a friend that they would like us to teach. Ryan Clay, the bishops son actually had a friend there that he wanted us to teach. It was just a great opportunity to let the Ward get to know me and to see my ability to preach the Gospel. Plus we had eight of our incredible investigators there!

       I have to tell you about a few of our new and progressing investigators. The first one being Chelsea. We ran into Chelsea while knocking doors. We actually didn't knock on her door, she was at a friends house. She told us that she did not have a church that she attended regularly and that she would like to start going to church. We asked her for her address and we realized that she lived right across the street from the Church! We've got to teach her twice since our first visit and she is just incredible. She is so prepared. She is super smart. And best of all, she is good friends with a member of the ward that she went to Elementary school with. Chelsea has a baptismal date for April 12th and I really really feel that she is going to make it. She totally loved Church this week! 
        The next person is Roger. Roger just showed up at church a few weeks ago and loved it. He was the guy that a wrote about awhile ago that was in a coma for a month. He came to church again also loved it! His wife in in the hospital and is apparently pretty sick. It really prohibits us from seeing him often because he spends a lot of the time at the hospital, as he should. We are hoping to get an opportunity to go and meet his wife and give her a blessings. 

       Probably the best experience of the week was having dinner with the Reynolds family! On Saturday they invited us over to have a BBQ with them. I can't tell you how much I love this family. Regina, Alvin, Dantavian, Tre, LaClaudia, and Lil' Kingston. Gosh, I love being in there home. Kingston is two years old and is the cutest kid ever. He out-ate Elder Anderson and I, and I AM NOT KIDDING. I have a video of it. This little kid was an endless pit, I have no idea where the food was going. Regina is incredible. She cooked almost the whole meal, and she is blind! She made the best Mac and Cheese, baked beans, rotisserie, and bunt cake I've ever had. She is so capable and is really an inspiration. Her 100% blindness does not hold her back. She is an incredible person. She told us all about the different books and things she's been reading. She is just awesome. We talked with them more about getting married and I really feel that it is going to happen soon. They are meeting again with the counselor this week and hopefully everything will go well. I love love this family. 

        Well I am running out of time. This ward is awmazing. I love this area. The people that we are teaching are just solid and really progressing. I am going to be staying in Snellville for another transfer and hopefully till the end of my mission. Brother Barthelus is going to let us barrow his tredmill and put it in his apartment. Awesome. Well, I have really got to get going. I love you all so much. 

-Elder Ryan Romero  

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