Week 103: October 26, 2015: Surgery went well

So this has been an interesting week. Monday was another lesson with the Arrington’s girls that we’ve been teaching. We taught them the Plan of Salvation and two of the primary teachers over there present for the lesson. So something we found out is the one of the girls went to a family in Glendale and they are also LDS, interestingly enough. So we are just teaching three of them now, which I think I mentioned last time.

Tuesday we had another lesson with Sandra and her kids. We had the lesson in the Hunt’s home this time around. Brother and Sister Hunt were Makayla’s (Sandra’s 14-year old girl) ma and pa during Trek and the ages of the Hunt’s kids matches the ages of Sandra’s kids, so we thought that would be good. So we finished teaching the Plan of Salvation and afterwards we just followed up on some specific commitments related to prayer and we asked Makayla if she had prayed asking directly if God is really there and if He is real and she admitted that she didn’t do it out of fear of something terrible happening like a car accident or some crazy event. So she’s afraid of getting a catastrophic event as an “answer” for some reason, so we talked about that for a bit and tried to resolve that concern. It was really good to have brother and sister Hunt there to help as well. We then followed up with Sandra and asked about praying concerning the living situation and she says she hasn’t done that, kind of also for fear out of what the answer may be, she doesn’t know what to do as far as moving out or anything like that and she and her fiance don’t have a date due to “credit issues”, etc. And so sister Hunt read her 1 Nephi 3:7 (which we coincidentally read to her a few lessons ago when the situation was first brought up) and explained that when God asks us to do something, He will provide the way. So we extended the same invitation again and she said she’d pray about it.

Then I had foot surgery – using a needling technique and so that put my out of commission for a while. He had to numb me up hardcore and after seeing what my foot looked like that night after taking all the wrappings off, I am REALLY glad he did because that could have been a Halloween costume right then and there just looking at the image of the foot. But it’s healing up pretty quickly and by Friday afternoon I was able to regularly walk on it and by Saturday, we biked in it.

Then Saturday was the wedding of Christopher Burke and Katelyn Evans (Desert Valley ward – my last area). So THAT finally happened. Christopher’s Baptism is going to be next Thursday. I’m still a little upset at how pushed off it keeps getting (to be honest, he should have just been Baptized back in August), but whatever. It should be happening soon, so the stress from that can be done and over with. It was really weird being at the wedding though. It was held at the church building at Ray rd and I don’t know, we just really felt super out of place. But eh, they looked happy. A little stressed, but happy.

Beyond that there wasn’t a whole lot that happened a part from a TON of mission politics and drama that happened last night and this morning. I won’t give any specific details on it, but let’s just say I really, really, really, really, really, really, really cannot stand most zone leaders in this mission and this is probably one of the most immature and irresponsible things I have seen them do. Regardless, we FINALLY got info on transfer calls. Elder Sites and I are staying together, which I figured. I wasn’t anticipating anything happening on our end.

But anyway, despite how stressed I have been since last night and today, this week should be a fun one. Wednesday will be transfer meeting, Thursday night is Desert Ridge’s Fall Festival, Friday night is Madero’s Trunk or Treat, and then Saturday is Halloween. Next thing we know it’ll already be November. Time flies.

Anyway, I hope you all have a great week and have a safe and Happy Halloween!

Love, Elder Foxx

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Week 102: October 19, 2015: Lots of Rain!

Well, we got ourselves three straight days of rain the past few days! I’m thinking the warmth of Arizona is finally ending! Yaaaaay!

So Monday evening, we taught another lesson with the Arrington’s adopted girls and taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That was fun. We stopped by the Arrington’s a few days later to ask them about a part-member family we heard about in the other ward they cover that apparently had association with them and as we met, we discovered that one of the four girls just went to another family. So now it is only three that we are teaching, which is a little disappointing. It was crazy to hear just where these girls have come from and the experiences they’ve had growing up. It’s a miracle they are as stable as they are (and they ARE pretty normal) with half the stuff they went through. So that’s quite a miracle for them just to be able to be here in a good home with a good family where the Gospel is present. That’s huge.

Tuesday and Thursday we had lessons with Sandra and her kids. Tuesday, we finally finished the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the principles and ordinances of Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the End. Both these lessons were in another’s member’s home – just trying to get the ward involved, which has been really cool to see it all work out. We taught the first half of the Plan of Salvation on Thursday (which was planned – I knew well ahead of time that we wouldn’t have much time to teach anything beyond the first half, haha). It’s been interesting because we’re trying to find a balance of being able to teach all three of them – her and her kids on an equal basis. Her 14-year old daughter is struggling with even developing a faith in God to begin with, so that’s something we’re trying to overcome and so we’re trying to get more and more of the girls her age out to the lessons. We should be having the next lesson this upcoming Tuesday in a member’s home – which members were the ma and pa for the daughter’s group in Trek the previous week (and the kids’ age match up perfectly too – a 17-year old boy, 14 year old daughter and 11-year old boy), so hoping that will help.

And of course, yesterday, Saturday, and Friday it rained each day. Sunday night in particular it rained HARD over here, it was crazy. Hoping that this tri-fecta of rain will keep the area finally cool and it can start feeling like winter is actually coming.

The spirit of Halloween is now all around! It’s crazy to think that’s just over a week and a half. And transfer calls are next week. Now that’s weird to think. Time’s just been flying. I feel like I’ve only been in this area for three weeks or something, it’s just crazy. I’m not anticipating anything for transfer calls, but we’ll see.

Hope you all have a wonderful week!

Love, Elder Foxx

Week 101: October 12, 2015: Teaching and Carving Pumpkins

So Monday evening, we taught our first lesson with the four little girls that the Arrington’s are adopting. It was a little different teaching it this way because we essentially taught the entire family (which consists of about 8 adopted children, 1 child by blood, and two parents, so it was a full house) so it was more like teaching a lesson in primary or something and just having the kids raise their hands and answer a bunch of different questions and teaching using the pictures on the pamphlets we had. So that was fun.

Tuesday, we had another lesson with Sandra. And that morning, I just felt prompted that we needed to teach The Gospel of Jesus Christ (being that through Christ we can be cleansed from sin, living the principles of Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the End) It was interesting because it was over an hour long lesson and we only covered really Faith and Repentance, which is unusual from my experience because I feel it is usually the quickest lesson we go through. But there were just a lot of interesting conversations and there were a couple of concerns that she was having. One of them being her current living situation (she is living with her fiancé but they are not yet married and there is currently no exact marriage date yet), which she actually brought up to us because apparently she had heard that from another member that she couldn’t get Baptized until that happens. So then she’s talking about how now that she knows that, she is feeling all this guilt, but at the same time with their current situation, it’s not the most logical or easiest thing to just suddenly change the living situation, and so she’s been really frustrated with that. So that’s been interesting. It’s kind of a tough situation. On the bright side, she said that her prayers have been getting better and that she feels more comfortable with praying, so a lot of the difficulty is hopping over that obstacle.

We had F.H.A. on Wednesday at the Catmull’s, which is always fun. Nothing too particular to say about that.

Other than that, it was kind of a “meh” week overall. I don’t really know why. Nothing really hard or terrible has happened, there’s just been this mood in the air of just feeling very… “meh.” It’s weird. Halloween’s coming up soon, which is strange to think about. We’re starting to see all the decorations come up both inside the houses and outside, so that’s cool to see. This morning for P-Day, we gathered together at a member’s home and carved pumpkins, so that was fun.

But yeah, that’s kind of all I have to say about this week. Hope that you all have a wonderful week!

Love, Elder Foxx

Mission1

Elder Foxx, Jacob Boyd, Elder Conover, Elder Martin, Elder Grayson, Elder Shively, Elder Sites, Elder Barr, Elder Mauclair, Sister Bacon, Sister Cowan, Sister Rigby, Sister Wells

Mission2

The line of Pumpkins

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My Pumpkin (The Triforce from Zelda) #rushed #Pumpkingutswouldn’tgetout

Mission4

The line of Pumpkins

Week 100: October 5, 2015: Surgery Ahead

So Monday evening, we had FHE with the Richen’s with Sandra and her kids over as well. That was a lot of fun to participate in. The message was on the Savior’s parable of the sheep and the goats and listing nice things that we’ve done for others that was really like doing nice things for the Savior.

Then Tuesday was an interesting day. I had to see President/Doctor Hale for minor foot surgery on Tuesday. I’ve been having cryogenic surgery on my toe for the past few months to get rid of this issue and nothing’s been happening, so he was going to try a different procedure this day. But after he asked me if I had any appointments and I told him we had a lesson that night at 6:30, he changed the procedure back to the cryogenic surgery and told me to come back in about 3 weeks and make sure I have absolutely no appointments the day of the surgery and the day after because it will put me out of commission for a bit.

So Tuesday, we mostly just stayed and rested because I couldn’t do much. We got a ride to the 6:30 appointment and had the lesson with Sandra and her kids. It was a very interesting lesson. The kids didn’t speak much and felt very awkward (I asked if they thought we were intimidating and they flat-out said yes, haha). So that was interesting… but apart from that, it went well. Sandra understands everything very well and commited to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. So far, she has been very happy with her experience in the church thus far, which is good. She had a few concerns about prayer and other things. The people we had at the lesson was a young couple – the husband being a recent convert, and they helped a lot with resolving her concerns and helping with answering her questions too.

Thursday, we had zone conference just about all day, haha. A lot of the training consisted of working with the ward council and with the members of the area and defining what we can do to help the wards and stakes catch the same “vision” of missionary work. He defined three different phases of wards. Phase 1, Phase 2, and Phase 3 (or good, better, and best). Phase 1 is a ward that does relatively well as far as missionary work and teaching goes, but the missionaries are doing all the work and have little to no support. It’s good because the missionaries are working… but the work is slammed down all on their shoulders. A Phase 2 ward is a ward in which the members catch the idea that they should help out the missionaries as the missionaries do the work. A Phase 3 ward is when the overall idea and atmosphere is that the missionaries help the members in fulfilling their responsibilities. The idea of “we have someone that is willing to hear the Gospel, we need the missionaries to help us to teach them and receive a testimony.” So we talked about what we could do to help our areas and wards become phase 3 wards and help the members of our area and the ward council catch the same vision.

It was interesting to be there though because there were 5 zones total (including our’s) there… aaaaand I barely recognize anyone anymore. The mission is too green. All the missionaries I used to know are pretty much gone. It’s weird to think though… that was my last zone conference in the mission. Now that’s weird.

Then we saw Sandra again at the Sunday Afternoon session of conference. It was interesting. It was the first conference session I’ve ever seen in a member’s home and not in a stake center. But they really enjoyed it. As we were there, we were able to follow up on the reading of the Book of Mormon and she’s been doing it, but she has a hard time retaining a lot of what she’s learning and reading. So we talked for a bit about that and so did the members that were there. We have our next lesson with her this Tuesday evening, so hopefully that will go well.

Conference was really good. It was different not seeing President Packer, Elder Perry, and Elder Scott. The last time we had any of the brethren pass away before those three was President Hinckley, I believe. But there were a lot of revelatory experiences in conference. One of the talks that I was impressed upon was the talk by Elder Lawrence (?) of the seventy about how when we pray and seek what it is that we may lack or what it is that we can work on that the Holy Ghost will answer to us and it may not be an answer we have ever considered. But it is important to be obedient to the Holy Ghost because God knows more than we and it is there that we can improve, and as we follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost, we will have the Holy Ghost as a constant companionship.

So this has been a pretty good week. It’ll be good when the conference talks become easily available online to be able to listen to them and read them and study them more fully. I hope that we can always do what is necessary to have the companionship of the Holy Ghost. I’m grateful that we have prophets and apostles in our day that can receive inspiration for the entire human family. I hope everyone has a great week and God bless!

Love, Elder Foxx