Monday, July 17, 2017

Yeah that's right, west coast, west coast...Cali representin' in the AR. Searcy servin' 'em up strong!

Monday was fun!  It was my 11 month!  We went fishing and then taught Louis again!  He invited his wife to take the lessons and Bishop Webb made it out with us!  We had a great lesson and he brought up his main concerns and we helped as best we could and he's having us over again tonight!

Tuesday we laid sod and shoveled dirt for the old folks home here in town!  It's Church of Christ owned so we got some good stares haha.  We helped with that for a while (5.5 hours of 90 degree heat and high humidity) and talked to a guy who was in the army.  He helped us and we talked as he told a few dope stories.  Can't wait for my chance!  I also have come to the conclusion that I never get tired.  I may get winded and sore, but I will not let myself get tired.  Haha I told myself that all day and I just kept goin and goin!  After we did the service, the manager of the place had us talk to him and he wanted us to come over to his house and help him with some work cause he saw how hard we work!  Odd thing, I love yard a lot haha (Dad edit: Who are you and what have you done to my son??).  Lots of experience in elder Smith and I and I guess my love for it has just increased.  We let our bodies a rest a bit and tried by a few people who weren't home.  We stopped by the Mauldin's and had a great lesson about the great apostasy.  Dayton just melts my heart.  Her hugs make me so happy!

The gang's all here!
Wednesday was lots of meetings.  We went to the leadership training in Little Rock and it was good instruction.  We got a new key indicator to show that we actually work when other numbers are low.  It's return appointment attempts.  Basically whenever we leave an invitation to anyone regardless if they say yes or no.  But that helps.  I talked to elder Speck a bit and the people in hot Springs I guess miss me a lot.  A few people said I was one of the best missionaries to be in that area, so that made me feel like I wasn't as useless as I thought I was in that area.  We were taken to a Chinese buffet by a member in Beebe and poor elder miller had an upset stomach...really upset.  So we had to get him some "clean up" juices haha (Another dad edit: I have no idea what this means and I am not sure any of us wants to know).

I shall call him, Jeremy.
We had district meeting on Thursday because of the MLT.  We went to ours and then Brinkley's.  It's about an hour and a half away.  But before heading out that way, we were asked to go to a funeral and be pallbearers for a lady who not even the bishop knew was a that was fun!  Very hot, but it was good.  I was with Elder Anderson for an exchange and we got along pretty well!

Friday was a full day in Brinkley because it was better for miles to exchange back on Saturday.  I got eaten by mosquitos and sweated off like...10 pounds haha.  Saw a few people, not a lot of success.  We knocked on this one door to give someone a bible, and we heard "who's knockin on my door?!"  So we give the "Jesus people" response haha but no one answered.  We got back and grilled some burgers and talked a bit and had a good conversation.  We're getting along a lot better than before!

They were feeling a little flat. (boom, dad joke)
Saturday was full of freaking what the heck moments!  First, a problem arose, but it's being taken care of, it sucks, but it'll be fine.  We were on our way back from Brinkley when we decided to take the route through the Dagmar Swamp land, let me tell ya, swamps are my favorite.  Something about the Cypress trees and water and wow!  It's just so pretty!  But after that, God rebuked us for doing that, cause our tire popped as soon as we got out of the park haha.  We changed the tired in the blazing heat.  I've never sweat so much in 10 minutes!  We just took off and put on a tire and I was dripping!!  But we made it back and was invited to a high priest social and dinner!

Look, water...and thumbs!
So this is where the night gets crazy!  Sister Clemons pulled us aside and told us there is a couple she wants us to teach.  She found them and gave them a Book of Mormon and restoration Pamphlet and got their first names and general area of where they live.  They just moved here from California and that's all the info she had, so she said good luck cause the sisters also know about them!  So we ran out to find them!  Also, just for more motivation, she offered pizza to who finds them!  So we go out and search for cali license plates and after searching everywhere, elder Smith said he felt prompted just to pull over and as soon as he started, I saw the plates and shout "CALIFORNIA!!  THEYRE HERE!!" Haha.  So we got out and knocked as if we just tracted into them and they let us in and offered us water.  We got to know them and they're from LA, but she went to school for medicine at ASU and U of A!  How crazy?!  They knew Mormons who served missions and knows a bit about the church and so we left thanking them cause they were still unpacking but told us to come back.  As we leave, I asked their names...well here's the twist...IT WASNT THE PEOPLE SISTER CLEMONS TOLD US TO VISIT!!  Totally different people with the EXACT same story!  How freaking awesome is God?!  Haha.

I go to 'That Church' on the corner...
So we left to go Finding again and said a prayer for success and a miracle as we prayed over where to go.  Well we knock most doors and near the end we find a lady.  She was cool and all, but we felt there was more.  She wasn't the miracle is what we felt.  So we left and we're kinda confused on what to do, so we decide to knock one more door.  Well this Arabian lady came and asked who we were, well Elder Smith thought she said something in Spanish so he says 'somos missionaros!"  She promptly said no and slammed the door!  Hahahaha I thought it was the miracle that I didn't laugh out loud right there haha.  So after accidentally offending this poor lady, we walk a bit out of the neighborhood and down the street and as a car pulls up, we talk to them.  Two black ladies, but one left and said not interested.  So we talk and teach the first discussion with one, and the other came back out suddenly very interested.  So we taught her as well and they told us to come back!  So we found our miracle!  But one more fun part, the second lady came out and was just eyeing Elder Smith hard.  Smiling and listening intently, she tells him he has the "cutest most real smile!"  So I laughed and agreed!  She kept checking him out and told us she wants my Book of Mormon, even though it was tattered.  So we left feeling good and laughing back to the car and as we walk, bishop pulls next to us and tells us to come over for lunch on Sunday.  So Saturday was by far the most eventful day of my mission!  Haha 10 out of 10!

I thought Kai said he liked yard work...project!
Sunday was good, nothing big.  The people who "promised" to come to church didn't come, but it's okay cause I had a good time at church.  After church, we went to lunch with the old Stake President!  That was cool cause he offered to come out with us and told us he's gonna have someone for us to teach, solid!  Then we weekly planned for a bit since we couldn't on Friday due to exchanges.  We went to dinner at the Lagomarsino's and played a card game with the kids.  I won, of course.  Sister Lagomarsino was texting Elder Ortiz and we talked with him for a bit.  That was dope!  We then headed to see a couple people...who weren't we went to Bishop Webb to get a tick out of Elder Smiths head haha.  We tried to get it earlier but his hairs kept getting in the way and the head stayed in.  So I got to watch a mini-surgery!  We finished weekly Planning and did our calls and took care of stuff before we headed to night night.

It was a week full of miracles and I'm so glad it happened!  I definitely have a strong testimony that God will answer our prayers.  It may not be in that instant, and it's gonna take some work, but they WILL be answered.  Just remember that miracles are always preceded by faith and action.  So, I will leave you with one scripture before I send this email.

Here's your sign.
Hebrews 13:1
"Let brotherly love continue."

Testify Paul!!  I love y'all so much and can't wait to hear back from ya!

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

Thy have gators in Arkansas...and crocs!
I hear banjos, frogs, and and old hound dogs baying...

Monday, July 10, 2017

There are times in life you just gotta Murica...and tract, lots of fruitless tracting...but hey, MURICA!

Sometimes you just gotta Murica.
Monday was full of torrential down pour so we stayed at the church all day.

Tuesday was THE FOURTH OF JULY!!  But instead of celebrating all day, we were running away from flash floods...yup.  All day it rained and rained and RAINED!  Absolutely insane!  Water covered my boots in the shortest of floods.  But we did get a good celebration!  We went to Beebe branch's most recent convert and shot (I didn't shoot;) ) 200 lbs of tanerite!  I'll send some videos!  Fireworks were shot off and it was a blast!  Pun intended.

Wednesday we had meetings with the new president.  We met President and Sister Hansen and had a big ole meeting!  They're cool.  Sister Hansen is so freaking funny!  After the big meeting we had a little Zone meeting where we instructed on the importance of studying.  I could tell everyone knew it was my first time instructing in a while cause everyone kinda zoned out, but hey, agency right?  Haha.  We went to lunch then the AP's called and asked us to drive to Little Rock and back to pick some stuff up, so we did that and had interviews with president.  Kinda a different type of guy but I like him!  We ate ribs that a member made for us and talked with Beebe before heading back home.

Baby Murica.
Thursday we had an appointment fall through so we went to do service for Habitat for Humanity and we had a great time!!  We talked to a bunch of people and this one guy was telling us stories of the army and he was so into the stories!  We're gonna keep going back every week, the people there love us and were so sad to hear Elder Wakolo was gone!  Such sweet hearts.  We went out with a priest named Clayton and met a member referral who is super cool.  He invited us in and let us talk for a bit and we're gonna see him this Thursday for a lesson!  Oh and also, he's filthy stinkin' rich.  Like, full sized basketball court and swimming pool in the back yard with a bridge over his drive way leading to a back yard garage rich.  His name is Jamar and I think he could be baptized!  We played basketball with some kids later on and then headed in.

Friday I went to Beebe for an exchange and we basically walked all all day.  It was so hot and miserable haha.  We got one return appointment and a lot one waving back at us.  Sad.  A guy did, though, stop and give us some water haha.  I went with Elder Goaslind's greenie and I feel I coulda done better, but it was a good exchange.

More Murica.
Saturday we went to the flea market with the Beebe guys and blitzed and found them some new people to teach!  It was freakin awesome!  Flea markets are the only place I will be shopping at for random stuff!  Goose (Goaslind) got a family sized double stuffed Oreos for a freakin' dollar...yeah...a dollar.  I didn't spend any money cause I just had to tell myself I'm poor haha, but I almost got a knife that would protect me from the monsters they call dogs here.  Let me tell ya, I don't like dogs anymore.  We saw Sister Maudlin and talked to her a bit and helped her through some stuff.  We also saw a recent convert named Monica and helped her clean off her porch in the blazing heat haha.  We used a hose and she was spraying her friend's son and they were fighting with water and we got caught in the middle of it...but I'm not complaining haha.  We went to the Mix family for dinner and met their granddaughter's friend Alyssa. Get this...she's 16 and got a 30 on her ACT.!  But we taught about the Book of Mormon and she came to church!  When we got home, a random car was in the spot by us and when we walked to the door, it was opened and so Elder Smith and I called a member to help us clear the house.  Keep in mind, my adrenaline was high and I was ready to go haha.  He got there and first thing he did was ring the door bell and say "let's see if they answer the door!"  Haha I laughed and my adrenaline was gone, but I had my knife out (dad edit: hmmm, didn't he just say he didn't get the knife?) and I was ready to pounce!  All was well and no one had been in the house.

Mail Murica.
Sunday was something else.  First off, I was called to give a talk on the Holy Ghost for 15 minutes but after the 2nd speaker was done, I looked at the clock and guess what!  I was left to speak for 30 minutes!  So, I elongated my talk by 10 minutes haha.  I looked at the clock when I was 3/4 of the way done and realized I still had 15 minutes left, so I just talked and talked and gave random details in stories and experiences that would help haha.  The bishopric was sooo impressed!  Everyone was haha.  They told me I'm their go to if they need another long talk haha I'll take it!  We went knocking all day though.  So we found out that a member, the Duncans, live in a prideful and stuck up rich area.  I guess the people there have Facebook alerts for when we are in the area so they don't answer the door haha.  So I let that be my motivation to knock every door with a bit of sarcasm and spite.  We would knock and I would say, "Hi we're the Mormons and we don't have 4 wives!"  Or, "Hey we just wanna talk about Jesus with y'all" haha nothing really worked but it was fun to lift our spirits cause it's tough when no one wants to talk all week.  I did though knock on a castle door!  Sadly they had already been to church that day and didn't need anymore :/ but so is life haha.  We talked to a guy with a Bill Murray tribute car and so I knocked and just talked about Bill Murray and Bob Ross and got a return appointment after finding out they had a child die.  So hobbies and talking like a person create miracles!
Southern Murica.

It was a hard week full of Heat, rain and rejection.  My heart was hurt cause of the hardness of hearts here, but I'm trying to not letting that get to me.

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

A boy and his turtle.

I need more turtle!



Monday, July 3, 2017

Settling into Searcy - teaching, searching, finding and loving most...and trying to love others...and snakes.

He loves President Wakolo!
Hey y'all!  Sorry, this ones gonna be a little short!  We didn't have too much free time this week!  It started off pretty good!  We found a guy named Frank and he's from Belgium and is a real tough cookie to break!  We saw him again on Sunday and he had a binder full of anti Mormon stuff and just wanted answers.  So he took this paper that had some anti on it and asked us to debunk them, if we could.  So obviously I took the challenge cause I immediately thought of how to trash this kind of literature haha.

Tuesday Was district meeting and it was good!  Beebe elders and Cabot sisters (both training) got invited to the Missionary Leadership Council with us!  That's a meeting only for zone leaders and sister training leaders so that was cool!  We saw the Mauldins and Dayton just adores me for some reason!  She grabbed my hand and smiled and hugged me haha.  We also saw a dude who we taught the restoration with in 5 minutes cause we knew he wasn't interested.  So I started saying random words that had nothing to do with the lesson and he didn't catch any of we never went back haha.

The crew
Wednesday we had MLC.  We had the missions last instruction from Elder Wakolo and it was powerful!  I'm gonna miss that man so much!  I found out one of the greenies from the zone, Sister Friend, is from Arizona!  She went to Highland though and I can't remember where that is, but still cool!  Elder Janes and I had some good conversations and Elder Edwards and I caught up!  I miss that child!  We had Book of Mormon class afterward and played basketball.

The crew part deux
Thursday I had a doctors appointment.  Yes mom, I went to the doctors haha.  There was a growth on my ear and Speck freaked out and was all "call the mission nurse you have cancer!" And all that mess and he ended up calling so I finally went after 2 weeks of nagging by the mission nurse.  I knew it wasn't bad, just a big wart thing so they froze it off...and that hurts a bit!  Haha it turned all black and stuff.  Sister Mauldin was super nice and we talked to her later that day as well.  We also saw the Duncan's again and had s'mores and they asked for a lesson on Saturday about marriage haha.  He is a gun broker and so I might hit him up for an AR-15 sale ;) right dad?  Oh and I got to watch a snake eat a was freakin dope!

Dr. Adair, paging Dr. Adair...
Friday was tough.  Basically, nothing happened besides God saved us.  Nothing more will be brought up until I get home.  I got the chance to meet a guy named Louis (pronounced Lewie) Bassay (pronounced bass-eye).  He's from Cameroon, Africa and he is literally the golden gator.  He asked all the right questions and wants us back tonight!  Literally the most spiritual lesson I think I've ever had!  I've never felt the spirit in such high supply!  At least in the past few months!

Saturday,  HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHANCE!  Yes, that's written in my journal I did not forget haha.  We went finding to no success, cleaned the church and helped a less active move a dog house!  I never thought I would say this, but the view from his new place is GORGEOUS!!!!  Like holy crap!  I was baffled!  Oh and he has a 200 pound bull mastiff, but that's besides the point.  He took us to Taco Bell and talked about his mission and he's funny!  He went to Ukraine and has some...tales haha.  We found a lady later named Amanda with her son Christian and taught them the restoration as well!  We talked to a guy who was 92 and looking for a job...yeah...92 haha.  That was funny.

A big lap dog...uh...what is he doing??
Sunday we went to church, I bore my testimony on the founding fathers and the restoration and we taught elders quorum...which consisted of us, Brother Shirley, and Brother Brown hahaha.  We just talked about the priesthood and how the world is so corrupted and stuff.  Brother Shirley invited us over for dinner.  He's a cop and told us some cool stories and Brother Miller came and showed us pictures from a shooting victim from a shooting in Little Rock (don't go to clubs in the south) cause he's a surgeon.  He took a bullet out of this kids spine and he is now paralyzed cause he wanted to be in a gang and go clubbin.  Brother Shirley also wants to buy a pontoon and wasn't caring of his wife's opinion hahaha brave soul.  We found 2 miracle investigators.  One was a guy looking for a church home and has seen a lot of death lately so we're gonna teach him at McDonald's (yes) next Thursday!  We saw the Duncan's and taught about marriage and it was funny haha.  I got to hold a snake and I didn't even let one tear I was puckered beyond belief and trying not to scream like a school girl out of fear.

Why?  Why Kai????
Pretty good week!  I mean, very many ups and downs and some quarrels but I'm alive and my spirit is high!  I love y'all so much!  Can't wait to hear back!

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

Serves him right for touching such an evil creature!

Monday, June 26, 2017

"Top Secret" goings on and other fun times in Searcy, Arkansas!

Elder Smith and the GIANT Elder Adair
Monday I got to my new area in Searcy.  Fun fact, this is where Dylan Hendricks goes to school at Harding University!

Tuesday we saw a couple people!  First, the Maudlin family.  They're a family with 3 recent convert kids and when we got there the younger son asked me to flex my muscles and then asked to have my American flag sunglasses haha.  We went out front and played football for a bit with them (my team son of course) and taught them all about the priesthood and the great apostasy!  It was awesome!  I also met a family named the Bowles and they're cool!  They got Elder Smith and I a pizza each and we got to know them with "2 truths and 1 lie."  We found a lady as we were looking for an old investigator and gave her a BOM and she wants us to come by regularly!  I also met an investigator named Travis.  This dude has been through some mess.  He was Army infantry, has a rough background and really wants to do good.  He was 50 days clean of some bad stuff when I met him!  He loves the missionaries and he's gonna try to help us teach his sister as well and shoot some squirrels too!  Searcy is pretty awesome!!

Turtles, another testament of...well, you know.
Wednesday we went to the boonies!  Way far back in the sticks!  We saw a less active and found a lady to teach!  Let me tell ya, these back wood folk are a hoot and a half!  The trailers they live in are pretty dirty and animal infested, but they'll talk to ya!  We were able to "accidentally" drift in the truck...yeah we have a Nissan Frontier and so dirt roads are my new best friend!  We came back though and while contacting a family, we found and taught this family of 4!  Only 3 were kinda listening but we got a return appointment for next week!  We talked to this one dude named Clearance (it's pronounced Clarence...#GottaLoveTheSouth) and he's a character...told us how he has 5 and half a million dollar records that he's gonna be selling and become a rich man and how he imprisoned a family for stealing his water...great guy!  Haha.  We went to Book of Mormon class (finally, an area who has it) and we ended up teaching!  The Beebe Elders baptized this guy named Jimmy last Saturday and he is a stud!  He knows so much - they got themselves a convert!

First you take the mallow...
Thursday was rough.  No one answered the door and no one was home of course cause it's missionary work!  I see it as the lord chastens those whose he loves ;) haha we went out and looked around this rich area and there's some BIG houses here!  After that, a big storm started to come in and so we took shelter in a members home!  They're named the Mix's and they're so cool!  They even made us pulled pork sandwiches.  Well...the storm got pretty bad and we had a few tornado warnings but they went by after about an hour and the storm stopped.  For a while though the streets were flooded, we got home safe and sound though.

Friday was a LONG weekly Planning session cause we had to plan out all exchanges and all the miles it'll take and other Zone business.  It took a good bit of our day.  We then started walking to the church to write and send the zone email, and then as we were walking this dude accelerates towards us and tries to hit us!  Then he waved and sped off.  Elder Smith and I were confused, and this dude who saw told us to press charges on him.  Well as we start walking again we see the car on the main road, honking and waving at we're like what the deuce is going on??  We took a short cut through a little field by our apartments (yeah this all happened within 30 seconds of us leaving the apartment) and then THIS DUDE TURNED OFF THE ROAD AND INTO THE FIELD!!  Drove at us and then turned and stopped.  Well it was a former investigator who just wanted to say hi!  Like what the actual freak!  Hahaha.  It was HILARIOUS!  When he was driving down the field I was ready to let this dude know I wasn't gonna let him hurt us haha.  Anyways, as we were walking, another rain storm hit us (I guess it had a name - Tropical Storm Cindy).  Luckily, we were by the Mauldin's and they gave us plastic bags for our iPads and told us to come by tomorrow for burgers, score!  We got to the church soaking wet and were able to send the emails...but before that happened we stood outside in the rain cause we forgot the key, but tender mercy alert - a member was inside.  God still made us work for what we needed as we knocked and knocked and knocked!  Brother Mix was inside and he's almost deaf so it took about 20 minutes before we got in haha.  We walked back trying to contact people and escaped some shady stuff, but we made it home, safe and sound!

Watermelon relieves all the worries.
Saturday we helped move a new Family into the ward.  I got to meet a few new people from the ward and I think I'm building some great relationships.  We also got in contact with a less active family and talked to them for actually quite a while, but it was good because we found out the son has been thinking about serving a mission and the parents are working on getting sealed!  So that was a score!  We walked back and we got a text from president "inviting" us to come to the Cabot ward (of course "invite" from a mission president means get your butt there or you're going home) and we were super confused at first, but I'll get to that later!  We walked to send notes from a talk Elder Smith was supposed to give to the sisters and then visited a family.  They weren't home, but the nonmember dad was.  He's cool, very not talkative but it wasn't a bad Visit!  We got gatorades!  We walked back and ended up finding ourselves back at the church!  Tender mercy alert, again - the high priests were having their social and invited us to eat!  Smoked Pulled pork sandwiches and chicken and woof! (Dad's editorial comment - WHAT IS WOOF???)  It was so good and one of the members gave us a ride home too.

Because who doesn't love Ella?!
Sunday was probably a once and a life time opportunity!  We went to the Cabot ward, and met President Wakolo and the other guys that accompanied him.  We went to sacrament and then President promptly asked us to meet in the high council room.  We went and you're not gonna believe this - Elder Beheshti was there!  He told us, President Wakolo, the stake president and his clerk and secretary, that we were on an assignment from M. Russell Ballard in the front lines of a new reactivation technique!  I can't go much further into detail, but it was AWESOME!  After we went out for a bit, we came back for debriefing and had lunch with everyone.  Keep in mind, we were casually eating lunch with an area 70, a general 70 (we called him Elder Wakolo and it made me giggle like a school girl) our stake president and some other higher ups.  Elder Smith was about to poop himself but I was sooo pumped!  I wanted to go out with Elder Wakolo so bad!  But I went with the stake president, who went to and ran track for SUU!  Haha he even long and triple jumped!!  How crazy?!  We came back and visited a few companionships and got a sense of how they're working.  Some are...less than adequate but we'll help em!  We visited a family named the Duncan's who had us over for s'mores and no joke this family is soooo cool!!  They even gave us 2 referrals!  It's looking up here in Searcy!!

So far, Searcy is awesome!  I haven't had any stressful moments and I'm finding it easier and easier to lead while still being myself!  Honestly, Zone Leader stuff isn't hard unless you make it hard and it's kinda normal missionary work.  I don't know why people stress over it so much?  But I'm happy to be able to serve my fellow missionaries and I'm looking forward to a great transfer!

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

I don't think Jordan used a table...

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the Searcy Elders.

 Just the good ol' boys, never meanin' no harm...

Monday, June 19, 2017

Time to move on - Searcy, AR, here he comes! A big thank you to Hot Springs!!

What a great Mission President!
Monday was pretty bland.

Tuesday we exchanged and I went with elder Rasmussen.  Boy do I love that child haha.  We went to seek out some less actives and formers and we ran into a lady who goes by the name "Mama Gale" and she was a hoot and a half.  At first, her son came up to us to of course share his knowledge of Mormons, but that was a rather unintelligent conversation not needed for a weekly email.  Anyways, Mama Gale was drunk off her rear and couldn't exactly control how loudly she was talking, but surprisingly enough, she's been reading the Book of Mormon and loves it and wants us to come back haha.  We saw a couple others and then had dinner at the Stevens!  I'm sure gonna miss them!

Food, glorious food...
Wednesday we exchanged back and saw grandma Gibbs later on that night.  Let me tell you how wonderful this day was.  Well, she told us she was gonna give us some food cause she had too much...but what happened next I had no idea would go down...she gave us 49 BAGS OF GROCERIES!!!  49!!!  We had to fill Brother Jordan car with it and drive back, call the other elders, and pack it into our kitchen...the whole process took 2 hours.  She also gave elder Speck and I special treats.  My special treat was a veal steak....Specks...well she gave him chicken paws...yup.  #FavoriteGrandson.  Hahaha.  We gave the other guys some food but the rest of the night consisted of trying to find where food can go because we had no room!  But we started teaching grandma the missionary lessons because she asked due to the fact she never had missionary lessons and she gets lonely and she's down in the dumps.  So we're gonna keep that up!

Grandma Gibbs!
Thursday we had a weird exchange as well.  Elder Speck went to his last area in Little Rock and another elder came here.  He was pretty cool!  Sister Rogers took us out to eat at this Mexican restaurant called Trejo's and it was amazing!!!  No joke, probably the best burrito I've had in a hot minute!  But before that was the Wakolo's last zone Conference.  That was pretty awkward for me because we had an inspection on how we were dressed and sister wakolo wasn't exactly impressed with my American flag socks...but I passed!  We came back and No one answered and no one let us in until we saw grandma again.  She proceeded to give us more food and stuff and gave me a yeti cup haha.  She's so sweet.  We taught her the plan of salvation and she was very emotional and had quite a few questions!  Brother Jordan was able to have some amazing input and the lesson was wonderful!!  The spirit was definitely there!  After that we came back and had Volleyball.  Only the Stevens showed up but it was still a blast!  Brother Stevens took us out to eat afterwards at Cici's where we had a tender mercy and got to rewatch the 85 and 86 NBA finals highlights haha.  Larry bird is my boy!

Elder Adair will miss Hot Springs!
Friday we had to drive to Little Rock and get Speck.  The members offered if I would like to eat with them, but Brother Devaux was antsy to leave...and then after we left he asked if I wanted to go to Five Guys.  I declined since he wanted to leave so bad.  Elder Speck is a doll and got me American presidents edition playing cards haha.  It was pretty eventful though cause we left our phone in Little Rock haha.  The other guys had to stay the night cause they had a phone and so we played Uno until like 11:30 or 12.  Let me tell ya though, missionary Uno dare is not for the faint of heart.  I'll leave it at that.

My apologies, I'm not sure who this is. :(
Saturday was cool!  We cleaned the church...but in a more cool way than you think.  We got to pressure wash and clean up the outside!  While we were doing it I got a call from president, but I'll get into that later.  Elder Speck got stung by a wasp and it was kinda funny cause he was freaking out the entire time and no one really payed attention...poor child.  But it got taken care of!  The other area got closed so we went over and cleaned out their apartment for a while before going back to see sister Gibbs.  We taught the rest of the plan of salvation and we gave her another blessing.  She is such a sweetheart.  We got home and Micah called and asked if we wanted to go laser yeah, we went laser taggin and played mini golf!  Micah's daughter works there so we got to give her grief as we had fun haha.  We came back and read the transfer emails!

Friends for life!
Sunday was a good meeting!  Hot Springs in total got 5 people to church!  2 stayed for all 3 hours too!  Paula loved it!  The relief society came in clutch and fellowshipped her as soon as she walked into the building!  Great day!  We went out and said goodbyes to people and it was super sad!  3 of us are deucing out!

Now, time for the news...that call president gave me...well I got called to be a Zone Leader.  I'm going to Searcy!  My new companion is Elder Smith!  He's a little guy and goes home in a couple transfers but he's awesome!  I can't wait!  I'm really nervous though cause I haven't even been a senior companion or district leader since I was with Anderson 2 transfers ago!  But I'm so pumped to be able to have his opportunity to serve!!  I love y'all so much!!

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

If you need this flask, you might have a problem...
So true, suck it up buttercup, and let's come together!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Glow bugs bring happiness, shine on little fellas: Service, guns, and Jesus...and don't forget the rugs.

Sister Gibbs, thank you and may your burden be lightened.
Monday was tough.  Brother Gibbs passed away and Sister Gibbs is torn up.  Micah took us out for dinner so that made up for a little bit of the feelings.  I had fried frog legs for the first time and they're pretty good!  In moderation haha.  Very salty.

Tuesday was fun.  At district meeting Speck set up a maze that we had to go through blind folded with our companions as the Holy Ghost to lead us quietly through.  Of course I did it the fastest but then we had to do it while being asked questions.  And of course, since I like to bash, speck had everyone gang up on me and bash me.  Isaacson and Rasmussen tried but they couldn't stop me from finishing AND winning the bash.  After that we went to Subway on a last second "prompting" from Rass.  I say prompting cause as we pulled up, a group of young scouts were there.  They're from Dallas going on a rafting trip and the leaders bought our lunch.  It was awesome.  We had great interviews with president afterward.  The kids said we were the coolest elders they've seen cause we were all rocking sunglasses.  I exchanged with Isaacson and had a church tour with Paula that was...less than great.  She can talk your ear off and distract from the spirit easily.

Would it be Elder Adair without a flag?
Wednesday we exchanged back and went over to the Gibbs.  We met her step daughter and she's very sweet.  She was so thankful for all that we do for Grandma (we're her adopted "grand babies" now) and cried at the thought of our blessings to her parents.  We helped Micah move a hot tub (one of his jobs, he wants me to work for him after my mission haha) and that thing was tough!  Huge!  Took 4 elders, Micah and Tristen (friend) with a bobcat, straps and sheer manpower.  We had to haul it up a forest hill, over to the other side of the forest surrounded house, down a loose rock hill, behind a 6 foot wide pathway, between a 3 foot wide gate which we had to flip the hot tub around and on its side, take off the deck fence thing, lift the giant hot tub onto it and then turn it into took all of that.  No joke, took an hour for all of it haha.  Solid day.

Most patriotic fire hydrant ever!
Thursday was a lot of knocking, no success, but hey, we tried!  We did get to talk to a lady for 5 seconds...we asked if we could leave the lords blessing in her home (a prayer) and her response was "and do what?" we asked leave a blessing on the home.  We got the same reply and we said literally to pray for you.  Soooo of course, this being the south, "I've got my church!" And door was shut.  Sweet Is the work!  We went and talked to Brother Cowell, a less active were trying to reactivate.  He's beat up over some relationship problems and stuff so If y'all could pray for him, that'd be wonderful.  We went back to grandmas house to help her with finding some scriptures for the funeral program and we decided to get food cause we were dying and I just ordered a shake...well they told us to pull forward.  I waited for 5 or 10 minutes for them to come out and say the machine was broke and took our gift card and refunded it.  Sad.  After the Gibbs, I got and ate a little Caesars pizza by myself before volleyball.  We beat the other team so bad we were on our knees and sitting and still winning.

Cowboys need religion too.
Friday was interesting to say nonetheless...we dressed Brother Gibbs...that was crazy.  You ever felt and held a dead body?  Well, let me tell ya, it's different!  It was eerie for a little bit but I got over it pretty quickly after a couple minutes.  We went out to this place we've been trying to hit for a while now and faced rejection, even from members...which was weird.  But we did find a dope less active!  It'll take some grinding and hard work, but I think we can get him back!  He believes in everything, just that the church asks too much of its members.  We're gonna address that next time we go over!  But he has the most drop dead, gorgeous and prettiest and most classy girl I have ever seen in my life...That's right...a decked out competition AR-15!  He shoots in matches and that gun is the best looking one I've seen!  I got to hold it and I was shivering with joy!!  I couldn't stop smiling!  He even offered to let us come by and do some woodwork with him in his shop!  I agreed quickly haha.

Well..see...uh...I have no explanation.
Saturday was the funeral.  It was amazing!  I felt like it was the funeral of grandpa Jim that I never got to go to.  It was everything beautiful and emotional that I feel like Jim's was.  We helped set up and take down all of it.  Grandma had us take pictures with her and Lisa, her daughter, and Lisa's son Alex.  He's 5 and loves us.  Lisa has had negative feelings towards he church from how she was treated when she was younger, but she said that we lifted the burden from her shoulders and she's warming up!  She went back to Florida that day though.  We went to the David's after cleaning up the church from the funeral and brother David showed me his .50 cal muzzle loader!!!  I freaking messed myself!  That's 2 gorgeous guns in 2 days!  Holy tender mercies!  I love the south!  Haha.  We came back for dinner and studies and ended off the day.

I just hope the dark side doesn't win...
Sunday was Stake conference.  Elder Steven A. Thompson of the 70 was there!  As well as president wakolo!  What a treat!  I don't know if people understood that we had 2 general authorities there!  So far on my mission, in my 10 short months, I have met an apostle of the Lord, 3 general 70's, 1 area 70, a presiding Bishop (Waddell), and several councilors of these men!  I'm so blessed!  After that, we drove back and had lunch and I found a .22 bullet and guess what!  It fits as my pencils lead lusher thingy!  I can feel the red on my neck coming in.  Yeehaw hoss.  We had dinner at the Devaux's again.  We then saw Sister Gibbs.  She's in a pretty dark spot but we were able to boost her mood!  She loves to "break protocol" and give us hugs haha I do not mind at all!  In fact, I hope she keeps wanting to break protocol cause she needs it.  She then told us she has a bunch of steak, chicken, salmon, trout, shrimp, vegetables, and other foods that she's gonna load us up with.    I even caught some glow bugs!!!  I have pets!!  They now fly around our apartment and glow and keep me happy!

Because blankets bring the spirit...I mean rugs, definitely rugs.
This week was definitely a roller coaster!  I'm so glad I have gotten to know Grandma cause she makes me so happy and gives me motivation to keep on when I'm being brought down and sad.
Something has definitely been addressed recently and I want to bring it up.  Brother Anderson, the less active with the AR, made a very clear and true point.  He feels people at church...don't look happy nor do they look like they're enjoying themselves or the spirit.  I thought about that and I have realized how true that is.  I had a whole paragraph typed out on why it's important to go to church and love it and it was kind of a throw down, But I think I can summarize it up in a couple scriptures instead.  In Matthew 26, Jesus, while he was in the garden of Gethsemane, asked his disciples to wait.  When he came back, they were asleep.  In verse 40, He woke them up and asked Peter "what, would ye not watch with me one hour?"  Can we not worship our God and Savior, with love and joy, for even one hour of sacrament?  And If we aren't doing it with love, why are we going?  I can tell y'all how much I know that church is important, but I want y'all to know for yourselves.  Go to church, listen to what is being said.  In the sacrament prayers, the talks, the lessons...the spirit.  Learn what each have to tell you.  And most importantly, love it.  Do it all with a willing heart and love for our God.  I promise that if you do this, listen, learn and love, then you can say as Peter in Matthew 17:4 "...Lord, it is good for us to be here...".  Guys, I love y'all too much and pray for y'all every night.  Go to church, love the Lord and endure to the end.
Forget the gospel, share the rugs. Maybe hugs, not rugs?

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

Monday, June 5, 2017

I'm running out of witty titles - just know it's GOOD! Oh, LOTS of pics and a vid...just so you scroll down.

For those of you that know the significance...
Tuesday we had a good district meeting!  I went on exchanges with Elder Lewis!  He's so freaking funny haha.  We went to the David's and did some service for them.  Basically we shoveled rocks and evened out a big mound to a slope haha.  They gave us pizza too so that was dope as heck.  I also found out I weigh 180 lbs...meaning I have gained 25 pounds out here...I'm on a steady climb haha.  We saw Richard and set a date for July 15th!  We set it so far out cause he still has some things to take care of.  We also saw a lady named Danielle and when we saw her WWE was playing...I can't believe how retarded that has gotten!  I saw for like 4 minutes and it was a bunch of guys in bright colored leotards pelvic thrusting...what the fetch is this world coming to?

Possibly the coolest painting EVER!
Wednesday we made it out to Malvern to exchange back (Malvern is a town like 20 miles away, we just had a bunch of miles to spare).  A lady came up and asked why we were dressed so nice.  After we told her we're missionaries and offered a card she got real turned off and walked away haha.  We saw Toisie and Charles Morgan while we were out there and woof.  They can talk!  Haha I love them to death!  First off, they've known each other since 4th grade!  Secondly, Toisie gave us marriage counsel and got to know us pretty well haha.  She told me that I'm failing because I don't have a girl waiting for me...I'll just go home now cause I'm pretty much useless.  After that we drove out into the middle of no where, 15 miles out of the way of our home route, to find out the house doesn't exist.  We went out with a member to see less actives and I want to be like him.  He pounded on the door and in his Samoan deep voice, he shouts "Its the missionaries!  We're here for [member] please come out!"  Hahaha I laughed so hard!  I'm gonna start doing that while knocking.  We went to dinner with a less active and he has some crazy dogs!  We ate steak and potatoes and watched Finding faith in Christ!  We got a call to give a blessing to a member who's passing soon.  We went and holy cow.  I have never felt the spirit so strong in a while.  Their names are the Gibbs.  If y'all could, please pray for sister Gibbs.  She's in a tough spot.  We gave her some scriptures to read and left.
Wendy's gets this copyright infringement?

Thursday we helped Devaux get a dresser for another member and the lady who sold it had this eagle statue!  I'm going back next week to look at it and possibly buy it haha.  But also cause we gave her a Book of Mormon and want to follow up.  We cleaned the apartment and studied.  We got 60 nuggets for $10 at BK and did family History work as a district.  We played volleyball with the Stevens family and again, we had a wonderful time!!

Kai and kids just bond, one big kid to another!
Friday we went and did some service for a relay for life event!  They were so thankful!  There was a cheer tournament, recital...thing?  Going on at the same time and so we got gawked at by the 12-16 yr olds.  The people we did service for gave us 4 free shirts that cost $20 each...they're dope!  They all pitched in for us so they're all my favorite sweethearts ever!  We saw Paula and this woman is amazing.  She had questions about Mormons, looked it up, found anti- and shrugged it off and found the answers to her questions haha.  We helped clarify polygamy and of course, the color of Jesus.  We just said does it really matter to your salvation?  She has enough sense to get that it doesn't matter. Paula told us she's considering becoming a Mormon!  Score!  We then went to have dinner at the Relay for Life place and we got our pictures taken with the leader lady and we're gonna be put in a magazine!  We went and saw the Gibbs again and sister Gibbs was in tears the whole time as we gave another blessing.  Brother Gibbs was awake this time and talking to us.  Sister Gibbs is really tore up, but she knows that it's all on the Lords time.  Their 10th wedding anniversary is on the 28th so she wants him to hold up until then.  Again I ask, pray for them.
This pic makes me sing happy songs in my head!

Saturday we helped Brother Burnside move his mother in law.  She's moving into our apartment complex right across from us so it was easy!  AJ came and I played with him while we were moving!  After the moving I played catch and hide and seek with him!  He's 5 and full of energy!  His mom was so happy haha.  We got called for another blessing with the other elders and the lady told Elder Rasmussen to look up her grand daughter cause they're both going to BYUI in the fall haha.  "She's beautiful! *wink*" hahahaha.

Do you even read sticks, bro?
Sunday was a good sacrament meeting!  AJ sat by me and we played and had a great time!  His mom bore her testimony on how great us missionaries were and looked me in the eye like the whole time!  It was so amazing!  After church, we went back to the hospital to see sister Gibbs.  She was told some unnerving news and was very broken down.  Then a member who will remain unnamed decided to come and just be a total delta bravo to her telling her that none of her wishes will come true because she's too hopeful.  I wanted to strangle him.  I literally looked him in the eye and glared probably so far deep into his soul that he felt the hell fire and brimstone that was about to be poured out upon him if he stayed any longer.  He left and a few other members came by and so did Doomsday.  He said some rather...weird things...I'll get into that after the mission.  But, sister Gibbs had us stay a little longer after everyone left and we read some scriptures with her and left her some more to read.  I've never seen someone love someone else so much since I've heard dad talk about mom.  Sister Gibbs refuses to leave Bro Gibbs side.  She never sleeps cause she's always trying to help Brother Gibbs be more comfortable or helping nurses.  She is always talking to him and telling us how much she loves him and different memories they have.  My heart broke so bad for sister Gibbs as I listened to this.  My heart has never hurt so bad for someone else.  She's been in my prayers constantly since Wednesday and I hope that things work out for her.  We then had a photo-shoot after dinner at the church for President Wakolo.  I'm sending a few of the good ones we took.

Just because...
This was a pretty good, but emotional roller coaster of a week for me.  Lots of spiritual experiences.  Also, just so you know...GLOW BUGS ARE REAL!!!!  I'VE SEEN SOO MANY AND I CRY WHEN I SEE THEM!!  Oh and other random facts:
1. My favorite scripture: JST John 1:1-3
2. I make some bomb smoothies
3. If you want to know why you can't just believe in Jesus and God to be saved, read James 2:19 (14-26 for full effect, but 19 is the fun one).  The JST version is even better.
4. Arkansas is the only place where wearing glasses is just as bad as not wearing glasses cause they fog up as soon as you walk outside.
5. Finally received a letter for the first time in 8 or 9 weeks...from the Fonnesbecks and the YSA class.  Thanks guys for the love...or lack thereof.
Hope y'alls week was great!  Keep on keepin on and Praise the Lord.  Amen hallelujah.

Update...Brother Gibbs passed away this morning...3 am, with his final wish.  To die at home.  Sister Gibbs is taking it hard.  We're gonna keep visiting her and loving her this week.  It's taking a pretty rough toll on me due to a couple things, but I'll be fine.

Kings Do King Things
Goin' Buck Wild

The Wakolo photo-shoot, another EPIC missionary moment:

Ladies and gentlemen, meet AJ: