Wednesday, December 23, 2015

december 21, 2015 letter

Dear Family:
This week was pretty crazy because we had transfers! I had driven and driven and driven some more! haha We had the transfer meeting on Monday and then on Tuesday we had to wake up at 4am and take the returning missionaries to their flight that left around 7 am. We then went into a parking lot of a hotel and parked there and tried to get some sleep, while waiting for the new missionaries to arrive. It's hard for me to sleep when there is so much going on, but I was able to sleep for a little while. 

After that we drove to the temple and showed the new missionaries around the temple. While I was there, I actually saw someone that I played baseball with! His name is Chase Merrill. I think that is how you spell his last name... but apparently he just got to Portland on his mission a couple of weeks ago and it was his day to go to the temple! I was talking with Sister Samuelian and some of the sister missionaries at the temple when I saw him walk by the visitors center and I told them that I just saw someone from home and I would be right back. I walked after him and we kind of looked at each other a little funny, and we were like, "Hey I know you!" haha He is awesome and it was good to see him. I asked him who of everyone in his class had left on a mission and he said that there were actually a lot of people who decided not to go on a mission, which makes me kind of sad, but maybe they are waiting a little bit! It was a fun surprise to see him. 

Then we drove out to the rock and spent some time there, and then came home. haha Every single person had fallen asleep in the car, even my companion! haha. So I was just driving a 12 passenger white van in the pouring rain at night! haha I thought it was kind of fun though. As I was driving I had a really cool experience. Do you remember the girl I took to prom my junior year? Mavanee Mcquivy? she had sent me a pretty cool email this last week about us being like apostles, but with a little "a". As I was driving around I realized what an amazing privilege it was to be driving around servants of the Lord! I was little driving little apostles around Oregon and it made me really happy to be a part of something so great!

I had been struggling for the past little while with having time to actually do missionary work, but there were 2 significant things that happened this week that really changed it around for me and made me feel a lot better. The first was when I went to president's house and he told us what a great job we were doing as assistants, but felt that he wanted us to get out and work as missionaries more. That was awesome! So we are going to be doing less office duties and have more time to go out and work, and I'm so happy about that.  The second thing that I learned with Elder Joly this week was about testifying with our whole heart to each person we meet. We had come to the realization that at times we would bear our testimonies on the street, and yes they were truths that we knew and things that we had a testimony of, but at times it didn't always come from our heart. It's funny, as we have talked to other missionaries about this, they say that it is hard to do that, to put your whole heart out on the line and have a chance for it to be hurt. So I think missionaries all over the world don't always bear testimony with their whole heart until they either know the person, or it is a super spiritual experience. So this past week, we had a couple days that we could work in our area, and we made a commitment to bare sincere, straight from our heart testimonies to every single person we met. member, not member, no matter who it was. I can't even tell you the difference that made. We were having a hard time finding new investigators, but this week we were able to find 8 new investigators, just from changing our approach. We no longer are trying to just connect with the person, we are trying to connect with their Light of Christ. I think I had come to that realization at different points in my mission, but never to this extent. We literally are just trying to connect to the Light of Christ that each person has, as it says in Preach my Gospel! It's funny how the Lord waits until you're almost done with your mission to teach you the important things (; What president has done in the past is that he doesn't have the assistants serve as an assistant all the way until the end of their mission. Each one he has either sent back into the field their last 1 or 2 transfers, or has asked them to train during those last transfers. He does that so we go home on a spiritual high note, I guess you could say. Our mission president really does care about us. So I think that this will be my last transfer with elder Joly, and then I think I will be moved to an English ward for 2 transfers and then be released my last transfer and go and train someone. None of this is set in stone at all, but it's just the feeling that I've had about what may happen. We have a new missionary coming in in May, which would be my last transfer, that is straight from Mexico, and I would love to train him. Things are starting to look up, and like I will be able to do some real work in my area (: and I think I will be out in the field again my last transfer which would be awesome!

I love you all so much! Love, Elder Romney (:

Oh and please tell Em and Sara that I am so sorry I can't email them today. I have to leave in like 3 minutes to go up to Forest Grove for the Christmas concert.  I love you all and I will see you at noon my time, 1 your time on Christmas! 
I love you! And tell Sara congratulations!! (:

My district!! 

The one laying down in front is my district leader.

I saw A at transfer meeting and Hermana Hedges went home.  You will have to let me know if she contacted you!

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