"That Describes Every Hispanic Lady I Have Ever Met"
April 11, 2016
Flower Mound 3rd Ward
Elder Cody Griffin
"That Describes Every Hispanic Lady I Have Ever Met"
This week went really well! A lot happened but at the same time not a lot happened. We were in a trio for most of the week with Elder Baker, our zone leader, because his companion was starting his service in the office. We had a blast! We actually did not ride our bikes for a little over a week. We're not sure how, but it ended up being that way.
Almost every one of our set appointments canceled last week which stunk, but at the same time we also spent a lot of our time in our zone leaders area.
One good story. We were talking to the member that is in charge of our meal calendar and asked him to set up a dinner with a particular family so we could teach them. He didn't recognize the name so Elder Griffin Griffin described the mom, and I quote, "She is Hispanic, about four foot nothin', and kinda round." To which the member responds "That describes every Hispanic lady I have ever met!" To clarify, we were not being racist or anything, she really is four foot nothing and round... Our member just decided to say that... Yep. That happened...
This up coming week I have a bitter sweet moment: I hit my year mark.I say bitter sweet because I have finally hit the year and I no longer need to feel inexperienced, but at the same time, I only have one left and the first one flew by so quickly. I look forward to this next year because I have learned so much already in my first one and I am so pumped for the growth and success that will come over the next 12 months!
A couple weeks ago I expressed to y'all how I had not had one of those really cool finding experiences. This week we got one of those. Wednesday night we we're on our way home for the night when we stopped to offer our help to someone we saw putting some yard waste into their garbage can. She said yes. That kinda took us by surprise as normally no one takes us up on our offer. We helped her and when we had to go after about 10 minutes we expressed our desire to come back the next day and help her finish the job. She accepted that as well. We came back the next day and not even 5 minutes into us helping her she said that she was going to come to church on Sunday and asked where and what time. She explained to us that when she was in the army she had a friend who was LDS and she attended or church with her and that not three days before we came across her, she had talked to another veteran friend who was a member of our church. Her friend had invited her to come to church which she kindly declined. Well she said that with us coming by three days later she felt like God was telling her "Hey go there with these people!" So she decided that she would go to church. Both she and her son came to church yesterday! They were welcomed by the members so well!
It seems as if in the past week alone so many things have just started to click with me, Elder Griffin and me as well as our ward council. Our member work will start going up, our companionship is starting to be more effective and full purpose and we are getting much more effective I feel. Really, this area is so affluent that the only truly effective way of finding people is through members. And really, the trick to doing that is just communication. Communication improves every relationship so it only makes sense that to improve your finding through members you communicate with them.
Over this last week, conference came out on the gospel library app! We were so excited, at least I was, because it is always so much better to read the talks and study them in depth. I have started with the Saturday morning session and am going on from there. I got to the talk given by Elder Donald L. Hallstrom entitled "I AM a Child of God" and it really throws things into perspective. I have said for a long time that if someone doesn't have a correct understanding of the nature of God, then they will never have a correct understanding of the gospel nor will they follow the commandments out of a love for our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. This is correct, but on the other side of it is a correct understanding of our divine potential. If we can correctly understand that we are sons and daughters of a God; heirs to a throne. That we are more powerful than we could possibly realize I this life with our limited mortal intellect. That we are of infinite worth to our Heavenly Father, that we, though as imperfect as we all are, can become perfected in Christ. I want to share something that President Ames shared with us last November in one of his letters to us: "Many of you have heard the little saying I made up while serving as a young missionary in San Diego, California. It might sound silly, but it really helped me in those moments when I felt as though I was in the furnace of affliction. One day while feeling the “heat” of life, I had a thought, “Fire burns wood but tempers steel, I am made of steel.” I determined that the difficult times of life would not burn me, they would make me strong because I was not made of something that could be easily destroyed, I was a son of God and as such could not be defeated by life’s heat. Over the course of my life this little phrase has helped me realign my focus and do hard things. It has reminded me that I am made of something strong and powerful. I am made of something that is holy and eternal. I am a son of God. When I am reminded of this truth, my circumstances do not change but my ability to deal with those circumstances does. There are many times in life when our vision gets blurred due to the pressures of life. We allow discouragement or disappointment to change our perspective. It is amazing to me how a little 15 minute nap, food, a kind word from someone we love or simply letting go of anger or frustration can change our entire outlook. It is even more amazing to me that turning in faith to God changes our view. When I walk by myself and trust in my own strength, my vision of the possibilities is limited. However, when I look to God I truly feel as though I could build a ship and cross the sea if that’s what he asked me to do. If we look to God, the master of the tempest, we can even find joy in the midst of trial. While our circumstance will not change, our ability to deal with those circumstances will." I can and do say along with my mission president that we are sons and daughters of a king! We are able to rise above the filth and the distractions that this world so often calls beautiful, fun and entertaining. "Wo unto them that call evil good, and good evil, that put darkness for light, and light for darkness, that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" (2 Nephi 15:20; Isaiah 5:20) This gospel does help us understand the truthfulness of our nature.
My declaration is this along with President Thomas S. Monson: "Our responsibility is to rise from mediocrity to competence, from failure to achievement. Our task is to become our best selves. One of God’s greatest gifts to us is the joy of trying again, for no failure ever need be final." (President Thomas S. Monson "The will Within" General Conference April 1987) Love, your missionary son and brother, Elder Jefferies