April 2, 2018


Canton, Connecticut


Elder Shrader

Snow, General Conference, praying for Hulk and King Kong

So, I'll start with today and go backwards.

This morning we arose (don't worry if it was exactly at 6:30 am) and my companion alerted me that I had been singing in my sleep along with my habitual sleep talking. We looked out the window and what did we see, 3 inches of fresh snow looking at me. Spring has brought us such a nice surprise, another snowstorm right before our eyes. Aha! you just sang that! We went about our normal chores and then were picked up by a member of the ward next door who went to the temple for the first time with my companion. We went to Hotchkiss Boarding School where he has worked for nearly 30 years and we got a tour of their facilities, played piano in their Chapel (incredible acoustics) and ended with a session in some full body massage chairs.

Sunday morning, well kind of morning-- we have Conference at 12-2 and 4-6 here, we watched General Conference on our Smartphones in the public "Lodge" at our apartment complex (it sure is incredible how much faster the words of a Prophet clear a room than a hockey game turned up too loud). We rushed off to Massachusetts for afternoon session with some members of our ward. We ate dinner with them and played a board game with them before it was time to head back home.

Saturday, we had all of our appointments cancel on us, except our dinner. After the two sessions of general conference and imputing the area book to the cloud, we met with the men of the Canton and Avon Wards at 5 Guys to gorge ourselves before Priesthood Session of General Conference. One of the Elders happened to have a BMX bike in his truck and I asked if I could ride it. Aside from it being a completely different discipline of BMX than I practice on, it felt good to get a good 180 in and head off to General Conference.

Friday, we had our regular morning routine and we headed off right after to Winsted, hometown of the man who helped push legislation requiring seat belts and air bags. We were stood up for the lesson we had there and headed up to Massachusetts for a car inspection that ultimately put us in traffic and home near curfew, so we stopped and knocked a few doors and were met with surprisingly friendly people for the hour.

Thursday, we made a mistake and tried to stay in Canton proper for the day and boy did that present challenges. We ended up walking past and in part through down town Collinsville, where Collins axes and machetes were made until 1955 when a flood took out the factory. We finished the day with some members for a late dinner. The highlight was the 3-year-old praying for Hulk and King Kong.

Wednesday, we spent in Bristol and tracted a ton. We contacted a few investigators who we had lost track of and got a few really creative stories. (sorry it’s getting short I am running out of time.) We had dinner with a family in the ward who sent pictures home to my family of us. We talked about how the organization of the church is for us, not because it is all some sort of saving ordinance. This was affirmed to us in the change from visiting and home teaching to Ministering.

I forgot most of Tuesday and want to share my thoughts on general conference. The main points I felt were:
1. Gain a greater testimony of the Book of Mormon and the Prophets.
2. Get in the habit of receiving and following revelation
3. The Savior and His example is what the Jesus Christ’s church is about, not responsibility, but love and learning from each other.
4. Prepare yourself now for tomorrow and for the day after; we don’t get to retroactively strengthen our testimony.
5. A Testimony is faith. Faith is belief that drives to actions. Without our actions, our habits and our community, trying to weather increasingly nasty storms will be increasingly difficult.

I know that Russell M Nelson is a Prophet of God and admonish all reading, member or nonmember to find out through for yourself. Pray to your Heavenly Father with real intent, with commitment to act on what he says, and receive the witness by the Holy Spirit that He is God’s prophet on earth today, then ACT on his words and admonitions.

With gratitude and love,
Elder Zimmerman


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