Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Another Hot Week in Hot Springs!

Hello my dear family!
It has been another hot but wonderful week here in Hot Springs.  My days are numbered I'm afraid...Sister Gladden is training a new missionary coming next transfer, so I will unfortunately have to say goodbye to the Griffins, all the people in the ward that I love, and our awesome investigators.  I love these people..it feels like I've known them my whole life.  It's cruel for them to be taken away from me. I'll just have to keep in touch with them I suppose.  Anyone who knows me knows I am crappy at dealing with change.  I am really bad at it.  But it's coming so I'm trying to brace myself.  Anyway, I wrote my list again of things I needed to include in my letter.  Funny things and spiritual things. 
Funny things:
Last night we were visiting Cynthia and Paul.  Cynthia just had a baby 2 months ago, but thought she was pregnant again.  Her mom went and got her a pregnancy test, she took it, and found the result-all in the time we were sitting on the couch talking. hahahah.  Well, she's not pregnant, if you're wondering.  But she is the funniest girl, so I had to share some things she said.  We somehow got talking about how Paul accidentally ran over their dog Nemo, and he died.  This is not funny, but the whole conversation was already funny, so we laughed all the way through it.  Cynthia said, "Stop talking about that Paul-I hate thinking about that because I still feel personally responsible for the death of my turtle!" hahahahaha.  Man, I don't know what it was, but we couldn't stop laughing.
Being missionaries, we run all over town every day.  During our galavanting(did I spell that right?), we see lots of names of churches.  First Baptist, First Pentacostals of Benton, Grace Bible church, Gospel Light, Church of the Nazerene, Trinity Baptist, Cowboy church (Yes, cowboy church.  What on earth would you do at cowboy church?!), well that's all I can think of right now.  My favorite one is cowboy church.  Almost everywhere you go you can see signs saying scriptures from the bible, or "Jesus is Lord".  One of my favorite signs at a church said, "We may not be dairy queen but we sure have good sundays".  :) 
Spiritual things:
Last week we had a specialized training, which is a meeting where two of the zones get together to have training from President and the assistants.  We do a lot of role plays at them.  They are always great because they are really uplifting.  This time, the assistants called me and asked if I could do a special musical number with another elder who is a pianist.  His names is Elder Sudweeks-he is a jazz major at BYU.  I think it's jazz, I know he's a jazz pianist.  Anyway, I was lucky to have a duet that Sister Hugentobler gave me(because we were going to do it together).  So that's what I brought to the training.  We practiced for about 20 minutes before the meeting and then performed.  It was fun to make music with someone again.  I miss it so much...I wish we could have played more things and for longer.  It was really fun to get that together though, because that's what I love to do.  Like all the times I made Michelle and Chelsea and Elisa and Joy and Kynsie do all these musical numbers with accordians, guitars, barbershop quartets, caroling..:) haha.  We played Dad's favorite primary song "My Heavenly Father Loves Me".  
 The other day we had a lesson with Brother Bledsoe, who is getting baptized next sunday!  He had specifically requested a special musical number of this song called 'In the Garden'.  Mom, do you know it?  I had never heard it before, but we sung it ones at the Bledsoes' house.  I was playing through a book of hymn arrangements last P-Day and came across this song!  So when I saw Bro. Bledsoe a few days later, I played it for him.  He began to cry.  It was very sweet.
We had a lesson with Antwon the other day that was incredible. We taught the Plan of Salvation. As we talked about the pre mortal life and how we lived with God, they looked at us and said, "Really?? Are you serious?" We explained the spirit world and resurrection, and the look of shock on their faces intensified. Antwon said, "Preachers don't tell you this stuff..why hasn't anyone ever told me this?" He talked about two of his best friends who passed away because of over dosing on drugs. We explained that the gospel of Jesus Christ is being taught to those who have not heard it and they get another chance to change. There was a change in his whole countenance when we told him that. He looked at us in disbelief. I could see that hope entered his eyes. The whole lesson was like this-he kept saying, "I never knew this.." At the end, he said, "You know, a lot of different church people come around and knock on my door. I don't want to turn away the Lord, so I let them in. What they said never really sat well with me, but ever since you two starting coming around, I feel like what you're saying is real. This is real." Yesterday, Antwon brought 8 kids to church with him. 8! Some of them were nieces and nephews, and some were his own kids. It was rather remarkable. It took a mini van and another car to get them all to church, but it was worth it!

Well, I hope you have a good week.  I love you all very much.  I think of and pray for you often.
love sister annalisa wilde

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