Date

January 24, 2017

Area

Damascus, Maryland

Companion

Elder Tucker

Small Progression

Hey everyone! I hope your week was a great one! Sorry about last week's email, we had MLK day so the libraries were closed and then zone Conference was the next day. Anyways, if I had to entitle my letter today, I would call it "small progression." I think you'll understand why in a second here, but first I want to talk about something crazy that happened yesterday! haha! We were driving down the road and the car in front of us hit this huge deer!!! It ripped off his front bumper and put a huge dent in the front of his car! Luckily he wasn't going fast enough for the deer to come up and over into his windshield, so he was all good. But it was pretty scary seeing this. Anyways we thought the deer had died on impact, but as we were directing cars around the deer we were gathering up the courage to drag this thing off the road, and randomly this deer put its head up and tried to get up but couldn't cause its legs were broken. So sad! A guy came from out of his house while all this was happening didn't say a word just dragged it off the side of the road, it was kicking everywhere. He had a police officers uniform on so I’m assuming he was a police officer, pulled out his gun and put the deer down! All of this happened in under 30 seconds! I about pooped my pants! haha! He looked up at us and said "thanks guys for directing the traffic." Then left it on his lawn and went back inside. Probably one of the craziest things I have ever seen...ya so that was last night :I
So with that ice breaker, I’ll tell you a little about our week. The highlight I’ll say was teaching Kenny Keith on Thursday night. I think i told you about him in last weeks email, it couldn’t have gone better. We first had dinner at his house and let me tell you he has the coolest house I've ever seen! It’s the bachelor pad of bachelor pads! haha! Ill try to explain it so you have a good idea. He build these three huge warehouse size buildings, one of them he lives in, another is a storage facility, and the last one is a collegiate size full court indoor basketball court....ya my jaw dropped too when I saw it! He has these cars in the warehouse that are worth so much money, its crazy, and he lives in a loft above the cars. He has a gym in there, all these toy model trains going around his house, pictures signed my every baseball player known to man! I’ll have to take a picture next week and send it! Anyways thats not the important part, the important part is the lesson. Like I said last week Kenny has been investigating the church for a pretty long time and has taken all the lessons so all of our lessons with him are going to be tailored specifically to the area's he needs a little help in. We talked about prayer and repentance. We had President Suhaka who is a former stake president with us, and Sister Marriott there at our lesson, and as we talked about these things, the spirit just filled the room just at the right time. We were definitely facilitators in this lesson, the Lord was teaching, and the spirit was confirming to him the things that He wanted to say. It was one of those times in our lives when we tell it , but you just had to be there to see it! He told us he needs to get baptized and right before (we believe) he was going to tell us it’s time, we got interrupted by a phone. It was like we were about to take off in a rocket ship and Houston came on the intercom and said "ohh sorry the launch is scheduled for next week!" We were like nooooooooo! come on keep going. Its okay though the progress that was made in just the first lesson was amazing and we are super excited to see what will come of this weeks lesson! So stay tuned!
Why I said small progression earlier is because this week was a little hard. Throughout my mission, I’ll be honest, finding people to teach has never been a problem. I have been greatly blessed. But what I had come to understand was with those discouraging things that may have happened this week, focusing on the positive takes away all the negative. Just as light pushes away the darkness, seeing the positive things, makes all the negative things seem so much smaller than we make them out to be. I love something that my mission president says often in his emails is… that perception is reality. If we perceive that our situation is terrible, then simply it will be terrible. But if you perceive something totally opposite, like what Heavenly Father wants you to learn from this trial or by telling yourself that you’re not going to dwell on the bad any longer, that becomes your reality! I believe that and can testify from my own experience that not only does my mission president want the missionaries to do this, but Heavenly Father wants all of us to see life this way, from a positive perspective. Life will be more fulfilling and we will be happier. I can also testify that God knows we wont be able to do that all the time and we will make mistakes, but as we make those small progressive steps, we will one day find ourselves at His feet. Of this is so testify in the name of our Savior, even Jesus Christ ,
Amen.
Love you all
Elder Shouse





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