April 11, 2018


Sixth Area - Keizer, OR


Elder Habel

Week 83

The last week and a half have been an amazing learning experience for Elder Habel and I. Personally, I learned the importance of achieving the basics every day. In our mission we have standards of excellence, which are to talk to 10 people in addition to planned activities or tracking (so street contacting people), teach the first three missionary discussions each week, and find two new investigators each week. Last week was extremely busy for Elder Habel and I! We had Zone Conference, a power exchange, and another regular exchange in addition to the normal tasks we have to get done as leaders. Needless to say, for the first time in a while, we didn't find the two new investigators, and we struggled to get more than two or three contacts each day during the week. We talked and prayed about how to move forward and progress to improve our area, and how to continue to find those that the Lord is preparing for us to teach the gospel to.

It hit us on Monday (we had a normal proselyting day then since p-day is today) that we cover downtown Salem. We can go to the capitol any time we want, and talk to all the people that are outside there! So, that's exactly what we did this past week each morning, including Monday. We've gone down to the capitol building (the grounds are very nice) for an hour and a half each morning before lunch, and we have been able to achieve our 10 contacts, and still have time for all the good things that demand our attention during the day. My testimony of exact obedience has grown tremendously as the Lord has placed specific people in our path that we were able to talk with and touch because we were down there.

Something I've learned recently from the scriptures and Preach My Gospel is the importance of using members in all phases of missionary work. Really, when we use other members of the church (because we're members too) to help fellowship and have investigators in their homes for lessons, we are truly giving our investigators the tools they need to progress towards baptism, and truly be converted to the gospel. They won't feel dragged to the baptismal font, but drawn. The Book of Mormon was talked a lot about in Zone Conference as well. President Tateoka challenged all of the missionaries to start the Book of Mormon over again, and look for four specific things, and to mark them in separate colors. They are:

1. Names and references to Jesus Christ
2. Christlike attributes
3. The doctrine of Christ
4. Words of Christ (when He speaks, or a prophet says "thus saith the Lord")

As I have done this, my understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ, His purpose and Atonement, and His love for each one of us has increased so much. The scriptures (in particular the Book of Mormon) have become delicious to me, and I actually look forward to personal study each morning, and I wish I could spend an additional hour for this exercise! I invite each of you to take this challenge as well to read the Book of Mormon from the title page, looking for these things. I know it will help each of you grow your testimony of the Savior, and like the First Presidency taught us, will help each one of us receive personal revelation.

I mentioned we went to downtown Salem--trust me when I say we had more than a couple hilarious situations, and more than I can count funny ones! Here's just a couple:

We were walking behind a person, with all three of us walking in the same direction. So, it started off a little rough! We were walking and teaching this person (at this point, we didn't know if it was a man or woman) and asked if we could give them a picture of Jesus Christ. She (I guess only I figured it out by that point) said yes, and the first card I whipped out of my pocket and put into her hand (she was trying to cross the street across traffic) was an articles of faith card...with a picture of Joseph Smith receiving the Melchizedek Priesthood...strike one. People already think we worship Joseph Smith! She (thankfully) didn't seem to notice. Elder Habel saw the card, and started laughing in the middle of the contact (I didn't figure the whole card situation out until after he was laughing)! THEN, to top it off, as she walked off into the street, Elder Habel said "okay, you take care sir!" I looked at him in horror and told him we had definitely talked to a woman. It took us a couple minutes to compose ourselves! 🤣

We stopped a younger 20's young lady to share a 30 second video that shares a scripture from the Book of Mormon. She said she only had 30 seconds to talk, so we thought, score! In the middle of the video, a man (we're assuming her father) walked up to us from behind us, and yanked her away from us, telling her they had to go. We sort of stood there in shock (I'm sure my mouth was probably open) until the video ended. We looked at each other and shrugged in confusion. 😂😁

I love you all! Have a great half week! Until Monday comes again!

Elder Kehl


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