Monday, November 14, 2011

Another week in the Ohio!

Last week was one of my busiest yet! We were traveling all across the mission going from Zone Conference to Zone Conference. Every meeting went very well and hopefully everyone was able to take something back to apply in their proselyting areas. Elder Parkinson, myself, and the Zone Leaders gave workshops on "Teach People, Not Lessons" and President and Sister Sorensen taught "Revelation Through Church Attendance." I am grateful for the help of my Heavenly Father, aiding me through the long hours and many workshops I gave. I spoke on the importance of planning our lessons according to investigators needs, by the Spirit. I compared us to Mormon in the Book of Mormon - him having to abridge all of the records and rely on the Spirit to know what to put in and what to leave out; he was able to meet our needs in our day through this process. Likewise, we must meet the needs of our investigators, not just teach them information. Thus the phrase, Teach People, Not Lessons. I also showed a PMG video and would pause and discuss frequently, asking questions to generate a discussion to prep us for our roleplays. I'm please with how it went.

In other news, I got a haircut and my hair was cut shorter than I probably have ever had it!!! Ahhh! The lady only made me pay 8 dollars instead of 15, so that was nice.
We found 3 new people to teach this week which is so exciting! I'll talk more about that...
This week we're having a 20-year-old young man in our ward come on a mini-mission with us. Hopefully this will change his life, inspiring him and allowing him to see his potential.

Last Saturday we were asked to participate in a City of Westlake Family History Search at a local library. A Sister from our ward works along-side the mayor has been heavily involved this year in Westlake's Bicentennial event. We stood at the doors of the library and informed people of the Genealogy search that was taking place and were directing people to the room. They had done this event before at Borders Bookstore but were lacking in the number of computers they had - many people turned out. So this year at the library, they had 12 computers in a conference room and 12+ family history representatives (many of which came from our local LDS Family History Center). We were able to inform many who had no idea the event was going on and everyone who came out the room had a huge smile on their face. When we would run out of flyer's or packets to handout (the packets had information for people who couldn't stay), we would go into the room to gather more supplies. I was overwhelmed by the amazing Spirit that was in the room, as I could see the great promise made in Malachi come to pass, "And [Elijah] shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers." The room was bustling with people and new discoveries were taking place left and right. Tonight, I and another Elder, will be attending a City of Westlake dinner where they will have a special performance and thank you ceremony for those who participated. We will be representing the church more or less.  

As I mentioned we found three new people to teach this week. One's name is Stephanie and she is a fiance to a less-active family. We have taught the mother quite a few times but were not able to help her regain that desire to come to church and partake of the Sacrament. But Stephanie and her soon-to-be-husband want the gospel to be a bigger part of their lives, so we will be teaching them every Thursday. The story of our other two go like this:

Two Sunday's ago we were tracting a street before dinner - something we had felt prompted to do the night before. As we were tracting we ran across some keys sitting in someones front door. We knocked, no answer. We were wondering what to do with the keys (someone could easily walk in) so we went to the next house to have them call and warn the neighbors. We did so and Erica answered the door. We talked a bit and she agreed to have us come back. We called later in the week (during which she searched online about the church and us and actually looked at this blog! If you're reading this, sorry I'm talking about you!) and set up an appointment for this past Monday evening. Monday came and we were stuck in the office from about 7:30am to 4:30pm preparing for our Zone Conferences. We had failed to coordinate a member to come to the lesson with us and no matter what we tried, we just couldn't seem to find anyone available last-minute. We called Erica and rescheduled the appointment for Wednesday evening. Wednesday came around and we took the Hooks (a younger couple in our ward) with us to the appointment. We get there and Erica had a friend over - Brittany. There had been some confusion and Brittany had come over for some Mary-Kay business, not a missionary discussion. Thankfully she agreed to sit in on the lesson. Our plans were to go over the Restoration (like any first meeting) but the Spirit had other plans. We talked the whole hour about God being our loving, Heavenly Father and also about prayer. It was a wonderful meeting! The Spirit was so strong, bearing witness of the truthfulness of our message! Both Erica and Brittany felt the Spirit - one described it almost as a pressure or pain in her heart - but a good pressure or pain. Later one described it as being euphoric, inspiring... At the end of our lesson, Erica offered a great closing prayer and we left them with copies of the Book of Mormon. Brittany during our meeting told us that she had been asking herself some of the exact questions we had answered the night - amazing how the Spirit will aid us in meeting their needs! It was no coincidence that Brittany had come over that night and that we had to reschedule our appointment - Heavenly Father wanted us to cross paths so we could share with them the love He has for all His children. We haven't seen Brittany since, but Erica we met with again and taught her the rest of the Restoration, and she came to church this Sunday! She has a 3-year-old son who fits right in with the rest of the Nursery-aged kids and many members of the ward were really excited to meet them. Tonight Elder Parkinson and Michael (the 20-year-old on the mini-mission with us for the week) will be going over to a members house for dinner (the Palmers) with Erica and her son. They'll be teaching the Plan of Salvation which we know will bless Erica's life even further. We're excited to get to teach her and help her come even closer to her Heavenly Father! I love to be able to see how Heavenly Father orchestrates everything in our lives just right so that we have opportunities for progression and happiness.

I know that this church is true. It is the re-established, Christian church that Jesus Christ set-up during his earthly ministry. In it, the Priesthood, or authority to act in God's name, is held. Only with this Priesthood can we make the proper covenants to enrich our lives with the Spirit, open the gates of eternal life, seal our families so that we will be together forever, and receive the purest and most joy in this life. I know that! People always ask what we're doing in Ohio or why we would "choose" to come here, and that is why. So I can open the eyes of so many out here who do not have the truth because they know not where to find it. My purpose is one with my Heavenly Father's: "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man" (Moses 1:39). To help people see the divine potential they have and see the blessings they are in a sense entitled to. President Harold B. Lee said, “If you could look into the heavens and see who you really are, you would be overwhelmed with your capabilities, your talents, your spiritual qualities, and the vision of what you are able to become.  If we knew now who we really are, we would feel different about ourselves.  We would be excited and enthusiastic about this life even with its burdens and frustrations.” My prayer is that we may all grasp a clearer vision of what we are able to become. This comes through earnest prayer, diligent study of the scriptures, and a commitment to church each Sunday to partake of the wonderful Sacrament. Have a great week!

Love, Elder Dransfield

 My current companion: Elder Parkinson

 Saying goodbye to Elder Toth - my favorite Canadian

Me coveting Elder O'neils yogurt? 

 Why my mission is the best!

Deer are everywhere in Ohio!

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