Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Oct. 6, 2014 Concord, NC

So as far as your question about biking, we're biking every Saturday and every other week. We probably bike 5-10 ish miles a day, unless members drive us. On car days we usually use the car to the best of our ability ;) My bike is working great! I'm really beginning to enjoy biking, especially down hill.   ;)

I'm super excited about Meet the Mormons!! We get to watch it in a special screening! Between that, General Conference, Zone Conference, and still teaching lots of people last week, it's been the epitome of fantastic!! 

At Zone Conference we talked about "Careful vs Casual" which is essentially rules or standards of the mission to help us keep focused. Our companionship haven't had haircuts in about 6 weeks and we needed them bad! Haha, But most of the standards we were following fairly well, we just had to change little things. As we work to be exactly obedient however, we are promised that we will see more miracles. For example, when President C had an interview with me, he asked me if I was getting up at 6:30, and I told him it was usually around 6:40. He asked me kindly to repent and be obedient, and left it at that. Since that interview, the weeks where I've gotten up exactly at 6:30 each day have been the weeks where we have had 18-20 lessons, which is the standard of excellence for the mission!! And the greatest part is that they have really been people oriented lessons! If we were only concerned about the number, we could get 20 lessons each week, but we have been able to find a nice balance where we're teaching lots of people, not just lots of lessons. As our area improves, we are going to see even more miracles in people's lives!!

I loved general conference! Wasn't this conference great!!!!! I really felt the Spirit during each talk, and was so sad it was over so quickly! The talks really were great though, it's kinda like having a super bowl twice a year for the missionaries :) I loved how they prayed for the families of the missionaries. I pray for yall too :) We tried our best to have investigators come but none were able to. I am looking forward to studying the talks more and being able to use them with our investigators though! We already shared the story of the ointment from Elder Bednar's talk with an investigator, T, and that actually went really well! We were visiting him Sunday night and in the middle of the lesson, we felt inspired to share that story from conference. He has a 3 year old himself and it was just what he needed to relate. He talked about how he had always physically and emotionally "doctored" everyone, and that he was able to help them. We bore testimony that we want to help him and to give him spiritual "doctoring" through his studying of the scriptures. Elder B shared about how we study in the mornings and T said that that would probably work for him because he was up around 4 anyways with nothing to do. It was a really Spirit filled lesson and we are praying for him.

I was wondering if you could email me the words to the "Honoring Leaders" video from the century of honor celebration. It should be on one of my school reports. We've been talking about Scouting a bit in the companionship recently, and I'm so grateful for what I was able to earn. Even more than myself though, I'm grateful for your love and encouragement of scouting and for letting me work at Scout camp. And I'm so grateful for the leaders and boys in our ward, and up at Kiesel for their help with my Scouting. It's practically second, only to the church in teaching me the values that I'm still working on increasing. As President C told Elder Z once: the closer you are to the tree of life, the farther away you feel. Luckily we have the chance to always grow our testimony tree, like was mentioned in this last conference ;)

Well, I love you all!! Thanks for all your support and prayers!! The church is true!

Love, Elder Zac Branch

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