Tuesday, July 28, 2015

July 27, 2015 in Greensboro, NC

Hey there!

Yeah, so with the new trainings and such, we are given the option to make Blogs! I decided to give it a try, it always seemed fun!   :)      It's called "A Branch in Israel" - here's the link.  
A Branch in Israel  

We were able to get P.'s phone number this week so we are meeting with her next week :) we also saw some crazy wonderful miracles this week that we are so excited about! We were really blessed to be led to prepared people all week, I will highlight a couple.

So on Wednesday we were over near a friends place and talked with her for a bit. Then we started walking around the apartment complex and there was a woman out on her porch on the second story, so we started talking with her. Her name was W., and she was great! She has just started getting into a church here, it took her a while to find one, and she is interested in the Book of Mormon and learning more. Then on Thursday we got a referral for a woman named J. who the Lakefield Sisters met! She said she wants to be baptized and we get to go teach her today with a member couple!! She actually lives in our complex, how about that. We met another man named H. who lives in our complex and has lots of questions about the Restoration and how to receive spiritual answers.

On Friday we met S. while trying to contact a girl named A. She said she had been up almost all night "thinking." We asked why and she said it was about family troubles. We testified of our message and she is super super interested! We are going back on Tuesday night when we are on splits. She is 21 and said she wants to make her way back to God. It's always a good sign when people say "will you really show up?? Good!"

So last night, we were out trying to find just a couple more people this week, and we were in some apartments we hadn't been in before. We saw a lady down at the end of the street sitting outside with a dog. We went and talked with her, but normally all situations like that (a person, outside with a dog, watches us walk up) usually don't go well. But she was super nice and we had a great conversation! It was totally lead by the Spirit!! We gave her a restoration pamphlet after talking for quite a bit, and as we explained it she got really interested, so we are following up with her and her husband on Friday. :)

Interviews with President were super! He likes Elder G. and I, and we are hoping we may stay together again.

Thanks for all the stories and the prayers! Good things are happening! We love ya!! :)

Love, Elder Branch
Elder TooBlessedToBeStressed Branch

Oh also, a CTR class from home sent me letters. They are great!! I'm definitely hanging them on my wall of inspiration.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

July 20, 2015 in Greensboro, NC


Thanks so much for the fun pictures!! I love them!

Our week was pretty good. We were able to teach a lot more than we did last week, which was really good. We didn't find any new friends, so our teaching pool is still pretty small. We are going to work on that this week. We are excited for interviews with President A. this week!

We got to go see the S. Family this week and had a great visit and committed them to read the Book of Mormon all the way through by the time Elder G. and I go home. Their daughter left for youth conference the next day, and then on Friday we got a call from Sister S. telling us that her father had passed away. It was rough. We went over on Saturday night and had a plan of Salvation lesson and it was so good. It really strengthened my testimony even more of the Savior.

Another wild story was on Saturday. We had a friend named P. we had been praying for, and when we dropped by she invited us in. We didn't have another male though so we couldn't go in, so she came and stood outside for a bit. She all of a sudden told us that she was a member and had always loved the gospel, but had just been away from it for a while. She doesn't want us to tell the ward yet, but she is working her way back, so we are super excited!! So pray for P.!

Final story. Yesterday we went and visited some former friends and they were way funny. They showed us a bunch of swords he had, and they were great! So those pictures will be coming your way as well. Thanks for the letters! I love the family blog posts! Hope all is well!

Love, Elder Branch

Elder TooBlessedToBeStressed Branch

We made ties!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

July 13, 2015 in Greensboro, NC


My week was pretty good. Some of the highlights were all the members we were able to get out. We only got to teach like 9 lessons but we had members at 6 of those 9. Also, at church this weekend, we didn't have any new friends attend but we did have tons of less active friends show up, and it was definitely a tender mercy. We are doing another mini 40 day fast thing, but it is only lasting until next fast Sunday. For the fast, I decided no reminiscing on songs from back home and to try to pray upright without leaning on anything. 

The piano was an adventure! So this last week we had Zone Meeting and I ended up playing piano again. The meeting itself was so good though, one of my favorites ever. We talked about lots of different things, but just the way it was organized was great. Elder P. and S., and Sisters S. and P. were really lead in preparing it. It was a blast.

Recently we have been losing even more of my mission friends as they are finishing their missions and returning home, including a bunch in the next 2-3 transfers. It's super weird and I will miss them. It's a weird feeling being 1 year out, because now we are able to think about what was going on 1 year ago. For example, last year we were at church in the MTC and finally feeling like we might survive the MTC, we really weren't sure at the beginning.  :)

The Zone Leaders, Elder G., and I had a little call in on the morning of the 9th and talked about what we had learned so far in our missions. I think one of the things I have learned most is how universal suffering is. But along with the suffering, I have also been so blessed to see how great the gospel and Christ's Atonement is in helping all of us through our suffering, our "valley of death" you might say.

Well thanks for the email, it was super fun! Love ya!

 Elder TooBlessedToBeStressed Branch

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

July 6, 2015 in Greensboro, NC. They met their new Mission President and his Wife, the A___'s

Dear Family,

Our meeting with the A's was great! They have lots of similarities and differences to the C's. One of the crazy parts at the meeting was that no one else in the Zone plays hymns on the piano besides yours truly, so I ended up playing for the whole meeting!! I don't know how it went, I messed up here and there but it sounded good for the most part. :) But the rest of the meeting was good. Sister A. told us all about their family and then President A. trained on what things we want to continue emphasizing in the mission. Our favorite was where instead of saying we are "Preach My Gospel" missionaries, we want to be "Preach My Gospel by the Spirit" missionaries. It was really good, and I'm excited, though it was sad to see the C's go. We did get to write them letters at the meeting that the A's are going to send to them, so that was good.

So a couple stories for the week, on Friday Elder L. and I were on exchange in Summer Field and we went to teach L. He was quite stubborn that he has a relationship with God that can't be strengthened. On the even worse side, when we first went there, L. started telling us about some visions he had, and showing us paintings of them. Our favorite was titled "Nightmare of Hell", and it was just that, a painting of fire and brimstone and a large and spacious building burning. As he was describing the vision, all of a sudden I saw something on my arm moving. I looked down and there were these little black specs jumping around on my arm. I looked at Elder L. and mouthed "what are they?" Just then L. looked at us and asked "did they get to you?" Turns out his house is infested with fleas. We walked to the light and looked at our pants, only to find 60+ fleas caught dead in the act of climbing up our pants and arms. We spent the next 50 minutes trying to teach L. about why he did need to be baptized, all the while picking fleas off us and drowning them in a dish of water. It was an adventure to say the "fleast."

Elder P. and I went on exchange on Thursday and that was really fun too! We had some adventures and got to teach some fun lessons. Then on Saturday the 4th, we went over to a members house who we ate with earlier in the week named the B's. The B's are Sister B's parents from Huntersville! So the B's were there too and it was way fun to get to see them and talk about the ward and everything. Bishop B. said that J. has been bringing a friend to church, and that he is doing really well. It was so fun! I will send you a picture :)  

Later that day we were finding some friends and all of a sudden we saw the B. family from Huntersville driving around house hunting! They stopped to wave to the Elders, and we recognized each other and had a short little chat. It was too funny! I am way excited to come back after the mission someday and visit all the wonderful people again!

Thanks for the emails! Hope your week is grand!

Elder Branch

Elder ToBlessedToBeDepressed Branch

Happy 4th of July!

These 4 Elders all have their 1 year, hump day, this coming week. 
They're not talking about it though.