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Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Surprise Stake Conference Speakers......

Hey Momma!!☺️☺️

Glad to hear that your sabbath day was great! Mine was.. Interesting to say the least. We too had stake conference. And guess who spoke at it?!? This guy! Yeah, it was crazy. Let me explain. Since it was stake conference, all the missionaries in the stake came, and we had 12 missionaries staying in our apartment the night before, including Elders Divis (MTC buddy), Pumford (buddy from when I was in Nantes), elder Karl, and tons of other guys from parts of my mission. There are two zones of missionaries in our stake, Elders Pumford and Divis are the other two zone leaders, and Sunday morning before the conference, we-us 4-'had a meeting with the stake president, so that we could present our idea of having a mini MTC. It went great!! He is 100 % in support of it, and will be talking to the ym/yw presidents, so we can work directly with them. President Rodriguez is incredible ☺️ he even took extra time to give us ideas and tips for working with the members. Anywho, conference starts the chapel we have here in Nancy is like the chapels in the states, and we had the chapel and gym filled. However, on the stage, are the most comfortable couches, so Elder Gaule and I had the best back row seats on the stage with the couches! Oh yeah!!! He conference was amazing! Some of the most moving talks that I have ever heard in France. However, there is a family that we visit often, that doesn't have a father figure, and as a result, the kids are pretty wild at times. The two kid are around 11 and 7 years old. The 11 year old is a girl, and the other is a boy. And they were running around the entire room, and decided to come and sit by us. It was really hard to focus because they kept stealing our name tags and kept getting in our faces. It was unfortunate because the talk that was being shared was AMAZING! And I really wanted to take the opportunity to be strengthened spiritually, but was struggling with the kiddos. While one of the kids steals my tag and is making a ton of noise, the speaker finishes and the stake president stands up. I can't hear him at all with being at the back with the two kiddos being so loud. And out of nowhere, I hear, "Jacob!!!". I look up and Elder Karl is staring at me... But he's not the only one! Everyone is looking at me and Elder Gaule and I see Elder Pumford and Divis walking to the front. What had happened was that the stake president had asked for the zone leaders to come to the front, and had asked a couple of times, but we hadn't heard. A couple of the elders had called my name, but I hadn't heard until Elder Karl called me by my proper title of, "Jacob" 😉. So we scurry to the front, and Pres. Rodriguez says how he loves surprises and has had the opportunity to work with us four missionaries and has been extremely impressed with our work and desires to further the work. He then says that the times ours to take and to express what we wish to the members of the stake. So since Elder Pumford had been standing closest to the Stake President, he started. I was third. While waiting for my turn, the little kid who had been taking our tags ran up to the stand and literally started to take all of our tags and run around.... Eventually his mom came up and got him, and while speaking I was given my tag back.. That was interesting... But, it was really incredible feeling the spirit direct me to know what to say. I expressed how in talking with everyone, we see how evident it is that the world is lost. And the members are the lights. Their testimonies and personal experiences with the Lord are the lights for the rest of the world. And I then testified of how I know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. That He came not in a general sense for the world, but for every single one of us, individually and personally. We all need Him! In retrospect, I wish I would have been able to have more time to think about what I was going to say, so that I could have used the opportunity to its fullest, but I did my best :) I enjoyed it! 

What's cool is that I wasn't even afraid at all! My confidence has impressively grown over my mission in so many situations. I feel like simply allowing ourselves to seem confident and look confident in ourselves by our body poster and the way we hold ourselves makes a big difference. In fact, another interesting thing is that I was talking to elder Gaule earlier this week, and I asked him if had I seemed timid or unconfident in a certain situation, and he told me that I hadn't. And I had felt unconfident in that situation, but I am realizing that if we simply put off that we are confident, it works. It's sort of like Kung Fu Panda. The secret is us! The dragon scroll is our reflection. If we believe that what we are doing is important and awesome, then it will be presented as such. And mom, do you remember that before my mission, I was sometimes insecure in social groups and groups like that, and I am really figuring it out :) 

So I did say that one day this week was hard and it was after my exchange with the APs. They weren't very obedient and focused on the work... And that was frustrating to me, because I have been around soooo many comps that really don't care too much for the rules. To have the APs in the same boat was frustrating. However, once again, the Lord helped me to see that it is because He trusts me and has a plan for them. They are where they are for what they need to learn, and it will all work out. 

I really liked Br. Eddy's explanation of the liberal Christians. That's sweet! 

That's too bad that Kale lost, but it will only help him out. We all fall. And it's not important how many times we fall, but how many we get up. As long as we keep getting back up ☺️ those games seem to teach us the best. It can be hard to get out of our heads, but if we can figure out that we are our own worst enemy, it makes it easier. Kale is an incredible qb. I'm so proud of him. And I'm so glad that he received the Eagle Scout. He's amazing! 

The most awkward thing is happening.. These girls that are Kale and Sam's age are staring at me and Elder Gaule in this MacDonalds... They don't know that we understand French and keep talking about how they are trying to get our attention... Then one girl said that she knew what would get our attention, and then almost stood up and started to wave her hands in the air like one of those air people things that are in front of the car dealerships... Weird... If Satan is trying to tempt us, he needs to send someone a little older and more mature... Hahahaha totally kidding hahahaha...well. This one 14 year old is seriously staring into Elder Gaule's soul... It's been like 5 minutes. I hope that she doesn't drool... 

Anywho! The work is okay. We didn't get to do a lot in our sector this week because we were on exchanges in Epinal and Versailles. In Epinal, I went on an exchange with an elder who is really having a hard time. And the spirit promoted me to sit him down and talk through his problems. I was able to testify to him about how much God loved him, trusted him, and was there for him. It was so amazing to know that the Lord trusted me to help him☺️ 

We will have a rendez-vous later today with a less active and hopefully have enough time to find new people! We have no progressing investigators which is really hard.. But I will keep working hard to find them!! 

Mom, it's ALWAYS a good time for a package 😉☺️☺️☺️ haha, I would love one ☺️

Thank you so much mom for what you said to me today mom☺️ it means a lot.  I love you so much momma! Your love helps me everyday. Thank you for being my best friend, and for helping me to always be my best self. You are incredible!! I love you❤️☺️ 

Love, Jacob❤️

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