Another week down! I have now been out here over one month! Time is really, really weird here... It seems like it was FOREVER ago that I had last P-Day! But then again, I can't believe I'm already one month into my mission!
This week was full of exciting experiences!
First, we have an investigator on date for baptism! That was really exciting. She is such an awesome lady. Elder Baird and his previous companion, Elder Felsch, had an appointment fall through one week and decided to go tracting. So they knocked on a door, and when this lady answered she responded with- "Elders! Come right in! I have some questions for you!" So they came in, got a glass of water, and then went into a room where she had a whiteboard full of scriptures and questions related to the Plan of Salvation. So of course, they taught her all about the Plan of Salvation and our beliefs on it and she loved it! They didn't give her a Book of Mormon, but in between that appointment and the next she went online and read it on Mormon.org. (So now we are to the point when I met her). Elder Baird told me that we had a lesson with an awesome investigator, so we went to meet with her. We answered a lot of her questions at the start regarding the Priesthood and started into our lesson on The Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost, Enduring to the End). It was an awesome lesson and the spirit was there very strong throughout it. She is a very religious woman that was honestly teaching me a lot about these principles. After reading 2 Nephi 31:30, the Spirit was really doing its work when she paused for a minute.... then responded with "Oh my goodness........ Jesus was a Mormon!" Sweeter words have never been heard! I love that... So before we had even invited her to be baptized, she was already talking about how she was going to need to find a way to tell her family she was going to be Mormon, etc. So of course, we invited her to be baptized. She's on date for August 25th! We met with her again since the last visit and talked about commandments and the Word of Wisdom, and while she drinks coffee, she said she would see if she could quit. We're meeting with her again this Wednesday, and she'll hopefully be at church next week for Fast and Testimony meeting. Awesome teaching experience!
The second highlight of the week was the storm on Thursday. Apparently the news stations were all freaking out and the TV's were doing the annoying alarm, but we don't get to watch TV as missionaries, so...Elder Baird and I were in our apartment Thursday afternoon doing weekly planning when I noticed a nasty storm blowing into town. It was about 3:40 and we had Ward Missionary Correlation at 4:00. Our power in our apartment was starting to flicker on and off, but we didn't really think much about it. Then the storm hit! HUGE raindrops were falling sideways. The rain wasn't coming down from the sky... It was coming from who knows where! Then there was super loud thunder, a little bit of hail, and all sorts of nasty weather. I looked at Elder Baird and asked, "Are we seriously going out in this?!?" About 5 minutes later, we had our rain jackets on and our umbrellas out and headed out into the storm. Luckily, the storm let up for a minute as we went the 2 blocks from our apartment to where the car is parked. But then we were driving to the Church, seeing all of the tree branches covering the road. Crazy! Then we got to the church and had correlation meeting. The church building didn't have power and we were huddled around the primary room window for light, but it was still a good meeting. Owego was fairly protected from the storm. Apparently there were 2 tornadoes about 45 minutes away from us though! CRAZY STUFF! But it was a fun adventure.
Then the next morning, Elder Baird and I headed out for our morning run. We run on a pathway down by the Susquehanna River, which is normally pretty nice. Unfortunately, the storm killed a TON of bugs and washed them all down there. At first, there was a pile here, a pile there, but nothing too bad. But then I saw Elder Baird kind of slip on something, and we were then running through several inches of dead bugs. It was super gross! Luckily it was only about 5 steps to a stairway where we were able to get out of there, but still…not too fun! We've gotten a few good chuckles out of it since that happened.
Besides that, it was a pretty normal week! We have had a lot of appointments. Enough that I still haven't even been tracting! Can you believe that?!? I've almost made it 2 full weeks without tracting any neighborhoods. We're joking saying that at this rate, my first time tracting might have to be on the way to the Airport in 2 years! Ha-ha I'm sure I'll get the joy of tracting soon, but I'm not complaining about the way it's been so far! The people here are really great to teach and get to know. Owego is already starting to feel like home! It'll be hard when I have to move in a few months. But I'll just enjoy it while I'm here!
I've noticed a few changes about myself already being in the mission field
1. I actually like Pineapple now! Weird... We used to always have it at home and I didn't enjoy it.
2. I can get sick of eating Quesadillas! I need to mix it up more.
3. I'm developing mild arachnophobia as I'm out here... There are spiders everywhere! Elder Baird walked into a spider web yesterday night and had a gross spider chasing him on the web strand stuck to him. Luckily, I was looking out for him, got the spider on the ground, and then stomped on it repeatedly.
4. I like country music now... What?!? How did that happen? I think it's because the only music I can listen to is "The Work" CD that I have! But it (country music) is growing on me! Who would have thought?
It's been an adjustment getting used to being out in the mission field, but I'm beginning to really enjoy it. Some days are super long, but I always sleep well at the end of them. I'm getting used to the schedule, and starting to like the work. The amazing thing is meeting all of the really great people here that I probably would have never talked to otherwise, but am growing to care for, and wanting to help them. It's definitely missionary work though. Sometimes, you just have to stop worrying and just work. But, the payoff at the end of the day is always good.
Love you all! Hope all is well back in Utah.
-Elder Mitch Hussey