Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Oh Ye That Walk In the Service of God

Hola mi gorditos,

Good news! I'm starting to dream in the language now. I woke up last night and realized that the people in my dreams were speaking fluent
English. #Milestone

We have had 4 different moves in our ward this week. Elder Burton and I have felt more like professional movers than missionaries but it's ok. We will act on any excuse we can to wear basketball shorts and t shirts.

I just realized that I haven't sent a picture of Elder Burton and I, so I took this picture right before sending this email.

We had a zone APF over in Yonkers. Yonkers is legit because it is a weird mix of The Bronx and the "upstate" area. Elder Burton and I were out doing some tracting. As we knock on a door, we hear a guy in a car behind us asking some people if they knew how to tie a tie. Nobody knew how to tie a tie! We flipped around and said that we could help him. He was on his way to a job interview and needed to tie a tie but had no clue how. We had the opportunity of teaching a grown man how to tie a tie on the street. Afterwards, he asked us what we were all about. We told him we were missionaries and he brought up that he and his wife were actually looking for a church to join. We got his digits and gave them over to the Yonkers Elders, so hopefully that guy and his wife will get in contact with the missionaries.

Yesterday President Morgan initiated something called a "car fast" where we can't touch our car for the whole day. I don't exactly fully understand why... So we weren't able to use our car yesterday. It would have been cool except Elder Burton and I live 4 miles outside of our area, let alone anywhere with work so we walked and walked and walked. When I first found the news that we couldn't drive, I was pretty mad, I don't know, something about walking in blazing humidity didn't sound cool. But then Elder Burton reminded me that just as we can fast from food and water and we receive blessings from that, we can have a "car fast" and get blessings too. All of our investigators live too far to walk so we tracted and street contacted the whole time. It was tiring but at least our legs were getting strong. Now our calves are so huge you can milk em. There were a couple times I wanted to murmur but then I thought back to dad at home. Whenever I would complain about something he would usually just say, "it will be good for you." Every time I wanted to complain yesterday the words, "it will be good for you" popped into my head. We weren't able to see a bunch of success yesterday... Mainly planting seeds..... But if nobody learned anything from us, at least I was able to be taught a little lesson.

It was still worth a shot to knock... They weren't interested.

My birthday this last week was pretty gouda. I was able to spend it in New York, so that cool right? When I woke up in the morning, my awesome new missionary, Elder Burton made me a great omelet for breakfast, he made it right in front of me. I felt like he took me on a bro-date out to Hibachi or something. Later that day, I had scheduled a district leader interview with Sister Groberg and Sister Udy. I showed up to the church and they threw me a surprise birthday lunch with the district! They baked me a cake and everything.

Happy Birthday Elder!

By the far the best part of my birthday was that night we had an appointment with a less active. The guy we were meeting with is 27 years old and was baptized a few years ago. He has struggled ever since he was baptized with fitting into the "Mormon Culture". He tried going to a singles ward but he struggled making friends... All the girls shut him down because he never served a mission, his interests his whole life have not been similar to what these lifetime members have been interested in. Basically he has no support group. He knows he is struggling with keeping the commandments and wants to change. This guy is a genuine dood. He keeps it real and I could sense everything he was saying about change was truly from his heart. Since we could tell he was being "real" it was easier for us to bear genuine testimony. I had the opportunity to share with him one of the most sincere testimonies I've ever offered about the Atonement. In that moment I didn't feel like a missionary robot that quotes the same rote testimony. I could feel the power from every experience I've had with repentance behind my words. Most of all, I knew in that moment that The Spirit was testifying to him of the hope that repentance can bring.

Elder Tyler "Brown Chicken Brown Cow" Johanson

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