Sunday, September 16, 2012
Derek Letter #10 9-3-12
Sounds like Erin and Dallin are doing well. Hopefully they can change their life for the better. Sorry I didn't e-mail earlier; the library was closed and we didn't have time to do it yesterday. So that's why we're doing it today. Before I forget, I have a few questions for you: Do you know the Stake President's name before President Ellsworth? It's been bugging me for a while now. Also, could you send the following to me: ballot for the 2012 election, sweat shirt (For P-day when it starts to get cold again), my missionary approved jacket that we got at Mr. Mac (again, just when it starts to get cold again)? Thanks so much. I don't know if I'll need those for a while because it's still in the 100's here. But back to your e-mail, Dallin needs to get back into the church and I know he will eventually because about a year ago, I was praying really hard for him and got the prompting that everything was going to be okay. Whether it's 50 years from now, who knows. I was going to tell you that earlier but I just never got around to it.
I hope you know that I am way excited for Jayson's baptism too! That's so awesome that he is making this covenant with God and starting on the path towards eternal life. I have news too. I am going to have a baptism of a 9 year old that same day too. We've been teaching him and will finish the lessons tonight. I will be performing the baptism this Saturday at 10 AM CT, so 8 your time. I'm excited for Levi. He can't wait to make this step as the branch is too. I hope it doesn't take 4 times this time like it did with Mike, haha! I will send pictures on Monday. You didn't mention anything about Cody in your e-mail. How's he doing? Is he adjusting to his classes well? Is he paying attention in seminary like I told him to? Upperclassmen have the cool opportunity to be the example. So it's good that he is continuing to go to seminary everyday.
They had their baby already?! They just got pregnant like 2 seconds ago. That time could not have flown by that quickly. Whatever. It seems healthy and the family is doing well. Holy smokes, Dusty is going home. He seems like the Wilford Woodruff type missionary that baptizes 300 in a day or something like that. Tell him I said Hi. Speaking of Wilford Woodruff, we got the D&C videos in our apartment now. So it has been fun watching Zion's camp and all these cool videos about Joseph Smith and that time period. You got new elders, huh? Looks like the mission president is trying to shake things up a bit due to the slow work in PQ. Dang I hope that 40 day fast works. That is really cool that you're doing that. I have been thinking of Dad too and praying for him in his duties at work and at church. It seems almost insurmountable at times but being my Dad, I know that he can get through any trial as he has a desire and willingness to help. Reminds me of in Daniel when the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands (Daniel 2:44-45). Oh, hey I passed off lesson 3 this morning and will start to memorize the commandments tomorrow.
To answer you questions, yes I do go tracting quite a bit. It has been pretty effective in the past and the branch seems a lot more into missionary work than most wards. I go tracting every sunday because that's when most people are home. We also go when we have no plans and appointments fell through agian and again. We have zone meetings once a month in Salina, Kansas (at the stake center), and zone conferences every other transfer. Do you know what the differences between the 2 are? I do get along with the elders in my zone, but we only see the entire zone once a month since they live so far away. So we just have 2 districts that we hang out within Wamego, Manhattan, and Junction City. I get along with everybody for the most part. We're buds. We also have 2 visa waiters: one is going to the Brisbane, Australia mission Mandarin speaking, while the other is going to India (I don't remember what mission exactly). I see President Keyes fairly often. About once a month. A few weeks ago, we took him on a tour of our new building. He really loves it. As far as my teaching is concerned, I definitely have room for improvement but it has also gotten a lot better. I am teaching people, not lessons to the best of my ability as guided by the spirit. Elder Clare is a rockstar when it comes to teaching. There are just no flaws whatsoever. Everybody should strive to teach like him. Haha, I am not in farm country all the time, but I am exposed to it a lot especially in this drought that has plagued the mid-west. There's this guy in our branch where farming is the only thing he talks about. I think it's pretty interesting, actually. It's time to harvest the corn around here so we see the tractors going around all the time. Yesterday, we were in Alma, Kansas for a couple of hours before we taught Levi lesson 3. I tell you what, that town is 50% old people, and near 100% farmers it seems like. For service, we don't farm at all. We work at this place called the Health Ministries and help them orgainze things and do the sweaty work that the office people don't want to do. We don't do any proselyting on campus or around Manhattan because that's not our area. I would only go if we were on splits.
So, this past week was really tough for us because appointment after appointment kept falling through and we just could not find anybody to go see. But I endured it well and I can already tell that the blessings of the Lord are with us. Everyday without a car this week so far, we have gotten rides in and out of Wamego and to wherever we needed to go. It's been tough still because people are always at work. But the Lord has blessed us in many ways that I can't even describe too. We are so blessed to be on our missions and hope that as we humble ourselves before the Lord just as the Nephites had to do again and again, we will continue to be blessed with people to find and teach.
Thanks for the Padres update. It was great to hear how they've been doing and it looks like they've turned it around after a rough start to the year. WHAT!!!! Adrian Gonzalez is on the stinkin' Dodgers!!! That's unbelievable! What a traitor. Hopefully the Padres can pick him back up when his contract expires for a good deal. Speaking of first basemen, how's Yonder Alonso doing? Grandal? While here, I have glimpsed at the TV a few times when people are watching Sportscenter, and as much as it kills me to turn away, I have to and I do my best. But I have seen that some players have been doing well. Kelly is doing well, huh? That's awesome! I hope Luebke can come back healthy next year because he was tearing it up before he got torn up. How did LSU do this past weekend? I heard Alabama demolished Michigan in Dallas on Saturday because one of my investigators is a big Michigan fan and wasn't too happy when we saw him that night. It was the first game of the year and missing college Football has been tough. But I know I'll get over it. The Chargers open the season in Oakland on Monday night Football too. Don't worry, I'm not letting that inhibit my work here as a missionary. At least I hope I'm not.
Well, that's all I can think of for now. I hope Jayson has a great baptism and I love you all very much. Love,
Elder Derek Sutherland
PS: "wwwwiiiilllllbbbuuurrrr. Wilbur. I can talk!!!"
Or "OH MY GOSH!!! A FLOATING SHOPPPING LIST!!!!"
"I'm not a shopping list. I'm a ghost!"
Unfortunately, being on my mission has made me forget a lot of quotes. I can think of them during the week, just not now.