This week has been wonderful. This email might be a little hectic because I don’t have my journal with me and we’ve been all over the place this P-day, we went to Salt Lake for the 8 o clock session at the temple with our zone, and stayed there till about noon, then got in n out on the way back to our area (people were literally clambering to pay for us, it’s incredible how kind people here are) and at 3 we’re going to a zone activity at a bouncehouse/sports place that lets missionaries in free, so I’ve been all over the place.
First of all, thank you all so much for the wonderful gifts! Breakfast and lunch are always a little skimpy because we just go off what we buy on mondays, which is mostly cereal and pb and j sandwiches (and lots of food members give us, sometimes good, sometimes not so good), so it was wonderful getting yummy treats and food! I loved the CD, the notecards (from the Elders), the towel, all of it! Thank you for all the birthday wishes, you all made it a wonderful day.
Okay, on to the week. We were having kind of a slow week, not a lot of people to teach and just trying to find the prepared people who are ready to hear the gospel. We have Brother Hill, and Elena House (11, grandma got baptized in december, she just needs permission from her dad), but we haven’t been able to have any legitimate lessons with them, so we’ve just been trying to find new people. We had a few slow days and hadn’t been finding many people who were ready to receive the Gospel. We both got sick this week, myself with indigestion and Elder Remington with a head cold, and walking around in the heat all day sick with not a lot of prepared people to teach was getting tiring. We decided to earnestly pray and seek to find miracles, and we started doing so. We got bikes almost immediately after from the mission office, which was WONDERFUL, we’ve been able to get around so much more easily! (It’s worth having a sore rear end!). On Saturday, we worked very hard in the morning during study time and made an extra effort to be outside right at one o clock (mornings are the following: Wake up/get ready 6:30-8, personal study from 8-9, companionship study from 9-10, 12 week training program from 10-11, language study from 11-12 (for me), and then lunch/add. study from 12-1.) and working. It was amazing. Elder Remington has been saying that he’s been incredibly blessed with a sense of direction, he had such a hard time before being here. Anyway, there was this family, the Snarrs, that continually had been popping up in conversations with Ward Mission Leaders, etc., and we really wanted to see them but didn’t have any information. We got on our bikes, and had scheduled: “Find Snarrs” for 1-2 o clock. We just started riding, and Elder Remington led the way. We pulled up at a random house, put our bikes down, knocked on the door, and lo and behold, it was the Snarr family. They’ve been inactive for a year, and their youngest son Talon is 9 and has wanted to be baptized, but they haven’t been to church. Talon was home, his dad was home, and we were able to teach an awesome lesson to him and talk to his parents about when they wanted to have him get baptized. On Sunday they went to church, and Talon’s mom has been reading Book of Mormon Stories like crazy with him. It was a miracle that we found them, the first door we knocked on, even having no clue where they lived, and that they were all home, and that we finally found people who needed taught and who were willing to be taught. That night I had my first bible bash experience with a Catholic guy who had been previously meeting with missionaries and loved debating and was very stubborn. I didn’t realize what I was doing till afterward, when I started kicking myself for not holding back emotions and teaching like Christ taught instead of throwing scriptures at him. Ya live and ya learn. I was a little frustrated after having bashed with him instead of listening with love and teaching to his needs, but that moment an older lady called us over and gave us about 20 of the ripest, most delicious peaches I’ve ever had!
On Sunday, we talked to Brother Hill. He’s still looking for the “right place” (We think a font would work just fine, but he’s set on a lake), but he wants to get baptized this Saturday if he can find a place he likes. We also went on exchanges with Brother Christensen, the Ward Mission leader from the 38th ward. I got to go visit a man from Rosario, Argentina who has been inactive for two years. It was wonderful to talk to him about his conversion and about Argentina and about repentance, and we invited him back to church. I felt prompted to bear my testimony in Spanish, which I felt was something he needed to hear and it was good for me, too.
Elder Remington reminds me more and more of Spencer every day. I swear I have my uncle as a companion! Even the things he says, the way he says them, and his mannerisms reflect Spencer, it’s crazy! If you ever wonder about what he’s like, just think about Spencer Cooper and you’ll know. He’s great, he’s taught me so much about love and being a patient, Christ-like student and teacher.
People are so kind here! Even those who aren’t members or have hard feelings against the church have been open and kind with us, offering water or food and being willing to talk (though they aren’t always willing to listen). We’re so excited to see more miracles in this area, the leaders are really starting to get on board and get excited to work hard to find those who are ready in this area. We’re really starting to get a handle on the people and the area, and our schedules are slowly filling up with people to teach. We’ve seen miracles every single day. I know that when we are looking for the Lord’s hand in our life, not only do we recognized it, but he guides our steps even more. Oftentimes, we don’t know what to do or where to go, but when we’ve been obedient, diligent, and press forward with love and faith, the Lord guides our steps and shows us miracles. I love you all so much! Thank you for everything, I so appreciate all the letters and thoughts I receive from all of you. The Church is true!
Love, Elder Hoffman