Monday, November 30, 2015

Week 15 - November 30, 2015

Hello, wonderful people! 

Hope you all had an awesome Thanksgiving week and got super fat and ate tons of food and celebrated!  I just wanted to start off by telling a few of the things I am most grateful for! First off - my family, love them to bits and pieces, most amazing people out there.  Second - my friends, all the way from Paris - Shanghai - San Francisco.  I'm thankful for all of you! You are wonderful people.  Third - the opportunity to serve a mission, I love it so much and it's been the best experience I could ask for!  I love teaching people about Jesus Christ and helping them.  It's so awesome to see what He can do for someone and how their lives can be changed just by following the Savior. 

It was a wonderful week here in South Philadelphia.  Temperature continues to drop and yes, the Christmas decorations have come forth.  Elder Andrus and I totally "pimped out" our place today hahaha, not really but it was good.  

We were SOOO blessed this week, had a miracle and just ugh, Philly never fails to excite.  Always something going on around this part of town which will never let me down!  But first off, I'll share the quotes of the week!

Scripture quote:
And if a person gains more knowledge and intelligence in this life through his diligence and obedience than another, he will have so much the advantage in the world to come.
There is a law, irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated--
And when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated.
This is Doctrine and Covenants (Book of revelations Joseph Smith compiled as he restored the church on the earth ) Section 130:19-21. 

I love this because we receive blessings when we do what we are suppose to be doing.  It's pretty simple, when we are obedient to the rules/commandments we are blessed.  When we are not - then well, we aren't blessed.  It's truly up to each one of us to ask ourselves, "Do we want happiness, do we want to be content, do we want joy? DO WE WANT BLESSINGS?"  "Yes lol, I do!"  Then do what you're suppose to do.  Simple. 

Our weekly quote was:

If we approach adversities wisely, our hardest times can be times of greatest growth which in turn can lead towards times of greatest happiness

Ugh this is nice.  Haha, it's just like, when something hard comes around do we simply give up and become depressed and say we can't do it?  No.. That's a dumb thing to do... Learn from it, become more knowledgeable, and become stronger.  That's why trials are awesome. 

There was a conference talk that discussed going through things alone vs going through things with others.  It's called, "We Can't Do it Alone," by Elder Robert D. Hales.  I'm just going to copy and paste some of my favorite parts. 

(Click on the link above to read or listen to the talk Elder Wilde is referring to.)

"Why is it that some of us fail to learn the very critical point that we did not come to this life to live it alone?  The “isolated self” shut off from the Light of Christ makes us become fallible--open to delusion.  The balance and perspective which come from caring about others and allowing others to care for us form the essence of life itself.  We need the inspired help of others to avoid deceiving ourselves.  The opposition which we must have is to make us strong; the fire which we withstand is to harden our spiritual steel.  It is clear to me that we have imperfections of body, imperfections of mind and intellect--that we are not perfect.  And for that reason we are dependent on others.  We must be self-sufficient ourselves, but that does not mean independent of help of others.  A just God has placed us here on the planet earth where we experience suffering and imperfection all around us.  And this life and estate are necessary because in this life we experience something we cannot do any other place.  The life we had before and the life we will have hereafter will leave our bodies, spirits, and minds in a more perfect state.  But we did not and will not have the opportunities to give of ourselves in the same way as we can in this life. 

"When I was a lieutenant in the Air Force, our squadron selected as its motto, 'Return with Honor.'  We realized that this motto applied to all members of the flight.  It did not just apply to us as individuals.  We flew jet fighter planes in a fingertip formation.  For a moment, fold your thumb under your hand and look at the back of your hand with your fingers extended. You will see a flight of four planes with a leader and three wingmen.  You are protected on the left and on the right, and the leader is concentrating on his goals.  If for a moment you will separate and put two fingers on either side, you will still see a leader and a wingman, one plane ahead of the other, and one plane on the wing to protect.  We all knew and were taught from bitter experience that a “loner” out of formation was unprotected and would surely be destroyed.  When we are marred spiritually or physically, our first reaction is to withdraw into the dark shadows of depression, to blot out hope and joy--the light of life which comes from knowing we are living the commandments of our Father in heaven.  This withdrawal will ultimately lead us to rebellion against those who would like to be our friends, those who can help us most, even our family.  But worst of all, we finally reject ourselves. When you attempt to live life’s experiences alone, you are not being true to yourself, nor to your basic mission in life.  Individuals in difficulty often say: 'I’ll do it alone,' 'Leave me alone,' 'I don’t need you,' 'I can take care of myself.'  It has been said that no one is so rich that he does not need another’s help, no one so poor as not to be useful in some way to his fellowman. The disposition to ask assistance from others with confidence, and to grant it with kindness, should be part of our very nature.  Loneliness and withdrawal take us as a pawn off the board in the game of life.

Love that talk, it's really great.  If you ever get sad or depressed... Read it! Haha 

I'll share a few experiences of this week. 

1. About a month and a half ago, we left a commitment to a recent convert who was baptized about 5 months ago.  She has had some difficulty getting to church, praying, and reading her scriptures.  So on Friday during weekly planning, we made her a calendar, a simple calendar, and told her that we wanted her to read every single day, pray every single day, and go to church every Sunday and that we wanted her to track it every day on the calendar by writing how much she read a day and then a check mark for if she prayed or not and came to church.  Anyways, we basically made a point system that each chapter she read was one point, a prayer was one point, and church was three points.  We wanted her to have at least 40 points by the end of the month.  We told her that if she got those 40 points, Heavenly Father would bless her somehow.  We had no idea HOW or WHEN, but we promised her that He would bless her.  Ever since I met her, she has been talking about how her rent was too high and she didn't have enough money to afford it.  Tuesday we went over there.... She is in tears, she says, "You guys were right"  We said, "What are you talking about?"  She said, "My rent was dropped 75 dollars a month and I can afford to live here now!"  The one simple thing she needed help with she received because... Why?  She was obedient to the commandments.  That's no coincidence!  That's a miracle!  Not random. 

Ready for another miracle? 

2. We have been working with this man named Robbie.  He is investigating the church.  He has tumors in his feet and pains all throughout his body.  He is progressing really well, anyways.  He has had extreme difficulty getting to church because he has no car and can't walk and doesn't have money to buy a wheel chair, but he told us, "If I had a wheel chair, I would most definitely go to church."  So Elder Andrus and I, during weekly planning on Friday, prayed and prayed and prayed to be able to get Robbie a wheel chair so he could make it to church -- Saturday night we had a few lessons/people we wanted to go to see, but they ALL canceled and ALL weren't home... We were both like... What the heck?!  So we were about to head in at 9:00, but we were both like, "Let's go stop by  to see Shirley and her family" - a new family that is investigating the church.  A family of 5, Catholic/Christian background.  Anyways, it's our second time over there.  We were just stopping in to read the Intro to the Book of Mormon with them then getting home.  Good lesson and we are about to walk out the door and the father says, "Hey guys.  I don't know if you know anyone in need of a wheel chair, but I was just cleaning my downstairs and I have an extra one and was going to throw it out tomorrow morning.  Do you know anyone that needs it?"  I literally looked the guy straight in the eyes and was like, "Are you kidding me?"  I think he thought I was mad or something because I was so stunned he just asked that..... YES, WE NEED THE WHEEL CHAIR!  God answers prayers.......... That again is no coincidence. 

3. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  In the morning, we had a turkey bowl (football) and we had about 30 missionaries come play in it.  Three times.  Played for about 3 hours.  Have any of you become really lazy and then go decide to do a really hard work-out for the first time in 3 months?  Well, do you remember that feeling the day after where you can't move a single muscle in your body and you are so stiff it's almost as if you are a 4x4?  That's what we felt like, we moaned and groaned all the way down the street...  We could not move at all and I'm still sore; nevertheless, it was still such a fun time.  Our team took 2nd place.  I had a 300-pound Samoan guy with cleats step on my toes and my right second toe is SOOO purple and bruised I can't move it.  It's so painful, and then he tackled me.... We were playing flag football and he full on tackled me!  I thought I saw my life flash before my eyes.... He friggin pulverized me.... Sigh. 

Anyways after that we had a Thanksgiving lunch appointment with a bunch of older less actives.... It was very "interesting," but fun time!  Elder Andrus and I were talking to Brother King.  He's like 80 and we were like, "What was the worst date you ever went on as a kid?" He told us a hilarious story about a date with a Nun.  Anyways, then Elder Andrus and I both made up horrible dates on the spot because they asked us, and we made them SOOO funny and outrageous and they all believed it.  It was great.  I'll send the group pic of us. Then after that we went to another Thanksgiving dinner, but this time with a family who lived in the NICE part of town.  It was awesome.  We played Charades with them and just enjoyed and had a lovely time. 
(Dinner appointment #1)

(Dinner appointment #2)
(Elders Wilde and Andrus with their sparkling apple juice.)

Last thing!

4. Arlene, a recent convert of the church, was asked to give a talk on prayer.  She isn't very...... Hmmm.... Knowledgeable about the church or just do I say this... She didn't get a proper education - so we helped her write her talk, but she was just talking to us about how she has never been happier in her whole life since joining the church and that she thought prayer was stupid until the missionaries asked her to pray and she said she received an answer to her question and was then finally convinced.  Anyways, she was extremely EXTREMELY nervous to give this five minute talk, so ugh it was so cute.... She grabbed my hand and made me go up to the pulpit with her.  She was just in tears, she was so nervous, so in front of all these people I kinda pulled her to the side and gave her a little pep talk.  She got back up there and KILLED IT.  She was in tears again but not of being nervous, she actually felt the Spirit because when we sat down she said that she felt really good and wasn't nervous after she got up there.  It gets cuter.  She was like, "Elder Wilde, you're like my son, I love you."  I was tearing up, she was crying, it was so cute.... Love it. 

Anyways, I would invite you all to just TRY praying sincerely, pour out your heart and man, let Him work wonders! 


Elder Wilde 

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