Sunday, September 14, 2014

Week 83 (7/2-7/28)

28 July 2014

Tuesday: was pday because of interviews on Monday with President
Villanueva. In the morning Nate took us golfing to the par 3 on Los
feliz. I played pretty well! After we went over to this sandwich place
that had these huge steak subs that even filled me up and was a
reasonable price. We went back and emailed. Elder Cook organized his
magic cards for most of the day and Tavoian slept. It was a pretty
chill day. Before visits with our leadership we stopped by Jerry to
visit him. He wasn't doing so well and he expressed his concern and
stress of his financial situation and that he can't come to the group
because of his health. He looks forward to church each week and so
when we isn't feeling well enough, he is sad. In our way there though
we saw ANTONIA (husband of Bella) who was supposedly incarcerated but
we saw him riding a bike up brand. We went on a Chase to find and talk
to him but to no avail... Brother Turley came out with us and visited
people but no one was home but Rostome. He was pretty inebriated. Let
us in and he told us he feels like he failed us because he didn't keep
his promise and come to FHE. He said he felt bad when he meets with us
because he wants to change. It was a great teaching moment but he just
wasn't really there. He must have understood some of what we were
saying because we invited him to be baptized 7 September and he
included that in his closing prayer. He asked what he could do for us
because we are helping him. Read Mosiah 18 with him and he seemed to
like that and it applied to what he needs. He said we could come back
Thursday. He feels the spirit when we come ad he is very sincere. Just
has a very bad drinking problem. Unfortunately we didn't see him again
this week but hopefully we'll catch him again sometime. After that
lesson we went up to Christina Avoian. She was helping Elder Tavoian
with his Armenian. During the discussion brother Bradley and Elder
Cook showed up because their lessons fell through.

Wednesday: was a bit of a mix up. So Monday when I was getting
interviewed president didn't have his temple recommend binder to have
me sign the recommend so he had me come Wednesday and get it from him.
So since the ZL's usually go to the office that day I went with them
for the afternoon after we met up at costco and had lunch. Mmm.
Chicken bakes. So we stopped in Pasadena to get my recommend and I
started chatting with president for a while and it got brought up of
when I was going home and on Monday I had totally forgot to ask what
day I would be allowed to go home since I'm extending. And that made
him remember that he had sent an email to the mission department to
ask when I would be allowed to extend to. And he pulled up the email
he sent asking if would be allowed to extend to the transfer date of
11 November. But the response was, surprisingly no. So the decision of
the brethren was that I would only be allowed to stay out until 9
November for some odd reason they wouldn't extend but I'm still very
grateful that I can stay out and serve an extra month! Not many get
that opportunity. So anyways he told me that. He told me how he met
the Taggarts in the MTC and how they were so wonderful. So I kind of
got a second little interview! He's such a great man. I'm excited to
finally hear him instruct. But after that we went to the office and
got supplies. Ran into Elder Lloyd there and he was telling us of some
problems he was having in the zone. Kind of funny to hear of the back
talk some missionaries give their leaders. Love that kid though. Then
after that the Ls had planned to just take me to PCC and do some
contacting on campus with them for a while. During which I got a call
from a potential, Seda, who had walked into  to la Canada church
service and the missionaries referred her to us and she wanted to meet
that afternoon. So we talked with people at PCC, had a few good number
of contacts including this one army recruiter who said his job was
like ours and so when we finally invited him to meet with us he said
"I have to say yes, I have to!" He was a cool guy. Then we headed out
to meet the other elders and headed up to la Canada to meet Seda. We
had a LONG talk with her. It was kind of all over the place. She said
she lives alone, very faithful, likes to do things to show her faith.
Brought up marriage and how important that was (she is divorced). We
taught her the restoration, said she'd pray about it but because of
how much she talked I'm not quite sure it registered. We probably need
to re-establish expectations with her. She has a surgery coming up
soon and needs people to come visit her. Which kind of put a lot of
stress on me this week for some reason. She seems to be expecting a
lot from us and not sure what our purpose is. After that we met up
with Arman Avagyan and he came out with me while Cook and Tavoian went
out and visited Edi and Andranik and Margarit (older couple who had a
dream about us coming). Arman and I went out and first tried by
Margarita. Had a good discussion with her. She said she had been
watching some Armenian TV and some of the things she was watching made
her a little wearily and more upfront with us that she isn't looking
to change but that she'll still come around and wants to clarify for
herself. She said she read a few pages from the Book of Mormon but she
said it was different than the Bible and that it was different than
from what the Bible taught. Taught her that it is the same teachings,
that there were a people here in the Americas and that we aren't a
narrow minded cult that others think we are. Invited her to pray, read
and come to church. Went over some expectations that we are only here
to invite and clarify, not force or prove. She said she didn't see the
relevance in the things she read. Things need to be relevant to her.
It kind of got me frustrated that she thought we were just being
narrow minded and she thinks we are just pushed to be here by parents
or the church. People like that just frustrate me. They make it seem
like we aren't able to choose for ourselves. But it was goo. We just
need to be more authoritative with her and she'll listen. After that
visit we went and saw Aylin and Zhorants. Emanoel started crying so we
didn't have too great of a lesson. Zhorants found new work in reseda
that is temporary and is Applying for other work. Hasn't met with Joel
Kasparian. Talked to him about baptism, still knows he needs and wants
to be baptized but he said it will just come in time and he is just
busy with other things on his mind right now. Said they would come to
church... But they didn't. It was a really busy day.

Thursday: after district meeting we had lunch at Los gringos locks
with the ZL's and then went back and did some studies at the church.
Then we went up to Allen and started knocking. We really didn't have
much knocking this week I realized. We were just so busy otherwise!
But anyways we got into this massive building right off the bat so we
were stoked and thought it'd be great... Only one person was
interested. Which is better than none. But this lady we met, Sedik,
was super humble. Had two sons. One was autistic and the other was
deaf and blind. Talk about a challenge. She was excited to have us
come back and discuss the plan of salvation with her. After knocking
we headed up to Verdugo hills to stop by Susan because we hadn't seen
her in a while. She was home and seemed a bit off. She told us she was
just sick and preparing for tests in school and at the dmv. We read
with her from the Book of Mormon and she seemed to understand it more
that it was a short, spirit filled lesson. Note: having the spirit
present is more important than trying to make them understand. See D&C
50:13-24 for reference. Then we had dinner with the Bradley's. No one
came up unfortunately. After dinner I went out with brother Bradley.
Our first visit was to Rostone who wasn't there. After that we went
straight to Aylin and Zhorants. We had a really good discussion lesson
with them. Zhorants and his temporary work will be finished this
Saturday and brother Bradley will be going with him next Monday to see
Joel Kasparian. He seems a lot more relaxed, emanoel was happy, and
Eileen was also happy. I shared with them a talk from general
conference (Keeping Covenants Protects Us, Prepares Us, and Empowers
Us) that talked about the temple and making covenants with God. The
overall message was that through making covenants, our imperfections
and anxieties seem to fade away. Eileen asked the question if that
means that Zhorants could continue smoking drinking till's baptism. We
explained that we need to strive to be perfect but God understands
that we are not and will make a difference. And houses along the way.
We committed them to pray, especially Zhorants, about a date when he
needs to stop smoking and drinking. By doing so they will know when
they need to be baptized. It was a powerful lesson!

Friday: was a pretty slow day. After studies we had weekly planning!
Yeah! After planning we did some knocking on Allen which wasn't very
productive. Then we tried by some potentials up in one was
home either. So by that point we were to my Bridgets house for dinner
and a lesson. Bridget wasn't feeling very well but she told me that
after we said a prayer for her she felt better. About us Costco pizza
and after the lesson Bridget wanted to show us her chickens. We went
over to Mike's parents house. They were setting up the chicken coop so
we helped and do that. These chickens were pretty ugly not going to
lie. But they were friendly! Was good that we went over there because
mike's parents seem to open up to us and were asking some Gospel
related questions. Mike's dad showed us all of his pictures from when
he took the national championship title of wrestling in Iran. He was
super good. So yeah that was our day.

Saturday: saturday we were all exchanges with Elder Ward and Elder
Smith. Elder Smith came into our area. It was a jam packed day. That
morning we went up to Seda's and I had probably one of the most
frustrating lessons thus far on my mission. She got offended that we
didn't ask if there was anything we could do for her when we first
walked in. Be sure not to kick any pillows that she has on the floor!
She told us that we weren't doing our job as missionaries and that we
needed to talk to our 'boss' and tell him we didn't know our purpose.
We went over the expectation that we teach people. She said we were
young and that we couldn't teach for anything. We reviewed the
restoration because she obviously didn't get it last time. At that
point she realized that she was learning something new! After a long
hour lesson with her she finally got it. She understood that a prophet
is to help us open our spiritual eyes and live more spiritually, that
we don't worship Joseph smith or think he is Christ, or anything like
that. She said the closing prayer and asked specifically if Joseph
smith was gods prophet upon the earth and could help us grow closer to
him. Said she'd come to church... Which she did! What was also
frustrating was she was expecting us to finds her a ride from one of
our members to drive her up to the hospital in Mission Hills for her
surgery on her arm today. And then she wanted us to come visit her and
our members to stay by your bedside as she was recovering after they
waited for the 5 to 6 hour surgery... She was kind of abusing our
willingness to help to say the least. But anyways! Good lesson. But
since the lesson took so long we had to haul all the way over to
Encino right afterwards to meet with a potential investigator that was
a referral from some North Hollywood Spanish missionaries. It was
amazing! We almost made the 30 minute drive in about 15 minutes but
then we ran into traffic unfortunately. And then we got lost because
this guy wanted to meet at this massive park and I couldn't understand
his western dialect over the phone which is really frustrating but
eventually we found him and we had a pretty good lesson. His name is
Arpiar. Had met with the sister missionaries. Talked a lot about his
family problems. We taught the restoration but not sure if he
understood the importance or if it really meant something to him.
Needs more relevance to be more desirous. Just friendly and willing to
listen. But he said the closing prayer, said the Lord's Prayer. He
said he would come to church not this Sunday but next Sunday. After
that we went up and tried by Max who is finally home! He didn't really
have a lesson but a good visit briefly where he asked us for some
advice whether or not he should kick his son out of the house because
they're being disrespectful. He still smoking but he said that he'd
come to church but again he didn't... He is reading the book Mormon
and making some visible progress though so that's good! By that point
in the day we are starving so we had to drive back to Glendale grab
some Taco Bell really quick before we went knocking with the North
Highlands only days I went out Elder Ford and again we had a pretty
slow afternoon. For some reason their area just seems to be dying
slowly. The rest the night included trying by Hambarsoom but he had
some guests over. Two end the night we stop by Dalar and her family
and we finally had a lesson! we caught up for a while and then showed
the because of him video. Uanani talked about Jesus Christ and his
life. Dalar asked the question how can we know at of all the things
that Jesus Christ did. We talked about the Scriptures and personal
prayer. Devon asked the question how can we know that Jesus Christ was
he said he was. We talked about profits. Devon wants to start coming
to Tuesday night activities. They asked about what time church was. We
invited them to church. Devon said the closing prayer with dollars
help. The mom loves want to come over and you can see the happiness
enjoying her face my teacher kids. Soren still doesn't really have too
much interest. Dollar asked the question if the profits lived with
God. We reviewed the plan of salvation briefly the kids remembered the
three kingdoms of glory. Then talked briefly about the gospel of Jesus
Christ and what we need to do to live with our families in heaven. It
was so good to teach that family again!

Sunday: it was a pretty typical day. Finally had two people come to
church so that was exciting. I translated again. Samvel took crazy
Minas out of Sunday school and pretty much rebuked him and kind of
told him not to come back. Which upset Hratch and he ended up coming
back anyways. Brother Twelves taught priesthood meeting. Seda was
there for sacrament but left early for some reason we haven't been
able to get a hold of her since. Sore not sure for going to get in
touch with her again or what. This afternoon we studied, I went out
with Rick to visit people. And seriously we tried by 10 people and
they weren't home which was a real bummer. And we had to drop Rick off
at the Bradley's house and then headed down to Helga's for our typical
Sunday night to lesson and dinner.

So overall it was a really good week! Taught about 14 lessons, I found
out that I can extend until 11 November so standby to find out my
actual date of return but it will still be in November thankfully. I
love you all and hope you have a wonderful splendid fantastic week and
I'll talk to you all next week. Love you! bye!

Elder Tanner DeBr

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