Today's email will start out with a brief highlight reel of the best tattoo's witnessed here in South Carolina, the following are in no particular order and all have a special place in my heart;)
1. we had a lesson last week with randy and his daughter Tristan, suuuuper nice, and we're going back this tuesday. Right in the middle of discussing the restoration I finally figured out what was on his forearm. It was the Duck Commander brand! very impressive
2. james gordan is man with a passion for mickey and shows it by his lawn ornaments, jewelery and tattoo of the little cartoon mouse himself.
3. Brother Braddock is a less active back in hartsville who explained very excitedly about the large tattoo of moroni he was planning to sport on his left bicep.
and for this week....
At Adriana’s her mom, sis owens made homemade Horchata…I thought I’d been translated, it was SO GOOD! I’d had horchata before, and it wasn’t like this at all. Sweeter than the drink was the lesson we had. We met out on their pool patio, and went over the first half of the plan of salvation, all by the light of bug-b-gone candles, a lovely atmosphere. She just took it all in, and kept asking all of these awesome questions trying to understand the atonement more. At the end we were all on such a spiritual high, we asked her if she wanted to know if this was true and thus know if this was the church God wanted her to be in. She said she did, she explained how when she first started going to New Springs (huge non-denominational church here) she really felt the spirit, and felt like her prayers were heard. But recently it’s been different, and she’s been relunctant to pray because sometimes she feels weird, like she’s just saying words. We promised her God would answer her, and she’d be able to recognize it, but it would take effort on her part. She committed to studying and praying to find out for herself, and if she received that answer she agreed to be baptized June 14th!
We were FINALLY able to go to the legendary smoking pig today! Cory and Tara cancelled on us, which was a bummer, but a good back-up was lunch with the pig on our way to the No More Strangers fireside. The Smokin Pig takes the blue ribbon as my favorite true southern restaurant so far: the rolls were heavenly, along with the chopped smoked chicken, banana pudding and sweet potato crunch I got. Good thing we don’t live near the smoking pig, that place is dangerously good.
We faced the adversary at it’s worse with this fireside, a few days ago we had everything all set for 10 people te be coming with us to the fireside (normally I count myself as very blessed if we can get one person to attend), but one by one they started being taken out. First the Robbins broke the news to us yesterday that they’d no longer be able to attend because of work, although they’d told us a week ago it wouldn’t be a problem, which is why we bent over backward and licked our elbows to find a babysitter for their 3 kids. Now we were down to 5 people, alisha called us this morning and said her boss had gotten sick and she had to work. We got that call during studies and I felt like throwing my desk out the window. And then there were 5, ladaisha called us a couple hours before (we panicked as soon as we saw her number calling) and turns out sis allen forgot and wasn’t coming anymore, take away her and her kids and we were down to one, just Ladaisha. But it’s never, JUST Ladaisha, Ladaisha’s great and I was so grateful she could come. I found it to be a special tender mercy and miracle because she told us today that she was moving to Greenwood for the summer tomorrow! We couldn’t believe it, and were minorly upset with her for not telling us earlier. She seemed to like it, I enjoyed hearing president’s simple testimony for one of the last times. They head home June 26th! Plus I was informed last minute that they picked me to share my testimony, so I was grateful for that opportunity as well.
Saturday ladaisha texted us and said, SHE WASN"T MOVING! ....yet, she was going to look for a job, and she still had some absences to make up for with summer school and she'd figure it out in about a week. But we've still got her!
When we showed up at mikes, it was no surprise to see the whole crew out front. It always makes me a little nervous because some of them, namely the drunk boyfriend Ray, can be a distraction. But a few moments after we arrived, Ray, his mom and Daniel all left. Which left us, mike, mark and joe. For the first time joe actually decided to sit in on a lesson! Joe has a set of beliefs, and had tried going to many different churches, but had never felt right in any of them. He had all sorts of questions like, “why did God break his own commandment?”, “Since God is our father, like most fathers, doesn’t he want us to be better than he is?”, “why did God create male and female with such strong attractions then tell them they have to wait to be married, knowing full well that people would break that commandment”, “are there any ruins of neephola (we assume he meant nephi) and his people here?” and more questions than that. As you can tell our lesson covered everything from the law of chastity, to the plan of salvation and the story of the Book of Mormon. But it was good, he committed to coming to church, and confessed that he wasn’t sure what he’d look like all dressed up. We told him he’d look real sharp. I felt a little bad for mike, he was kinda left back in the dust. Joe is really intelligent, and Mike is really smart just not as educated and struggles being able to explain how he feels in words. This is beautiful though, this gospel is designed for families, and having mike and joe support each other would be such a huge blessing.
mmmmm, it's been a wonderful week!