Monday, December 7, 2015

Week 17 Halloween in California

November 4, 2014 Family, Well first off let me apologize for not telling you last week that I would be emailing today rather than Monday, as we had our temple trip today and our p-day was moved to today. But also, I got to go to the temple today! It was awesome, we went to the Oakland Temple and it is sooooo beautiful. It is a pretty big temple and it is pretty in the middle of nowhere, you are just driving on the freeway and then all of the sudden on the right hand side it's like, "oh hey, there's the temple" which is super cool. So that was awesome. A really cool recent convert in our ward, Zach, who is a senior in high school right now gave us a ride to the temple which was way cool of him. He is one of the coolest members in the area. Anyways, this last week was a pretty good week, it went by faster than the last couple, so that is good. It's weird to think that later this week, I will have been out for 4 months! So weird! But it does feel like the first 2 weeks of the transfer go way slow then it starts to pick up. This week should be fast too, because today is temple trip and P-day, tomorrow we are going to Petaluma, and Friday we have zone conference, which is also in Petaluma. So we will be in Petaluma a lot in the next few days. So last Tuesday we had zone meeting, which was way nice because for one, I didn't have to do district meeting, and second, we got the new music rule, which is that we can listen to any music as long as it follows the white handbook standards. So that is waaaay nice, especially with bands like vocal point and piano guys, stuff that is really good but still uplifting and spiritual. Tuesday we also had exchanges which was pretty nice and I got to go with Elder Hastings, who is one of my zone leaders, and has been my whole mission so far. It was pretty good. We had a lesson with a recent convert name Nate Legakis, who is soooooo strange. He texts us all the time, and he would do it to the sisters too. So when we went to his house, we were already kind of scared, because this guy is pretty infamous in the Santa Rosa area as far as missionaries go. So he opens the door, and the first thing we notice is that his 4 year old son is butt naked. And he was for the whole lesson... We didn't really know how to react. We just kind of let it happen cause I mean, what can you do. The worst part was that halfway through the visit, his son tries to get something out of the fridge, and spills Parmesan cheese all over the floor, but the dad doesn't pick it up, he just leaves it there and his son just starts playing in the cheese, butt naked still. It was horrible. Soooooo awkward. Me and Elder Hastings always have the strangest experiences together. Wednesday, we ended our exchange, and then just did some finding and did service at the library. Thursday we did our weekly zone service at the food bank, which was good as usual. After that we were trying to find a guy that formerly had a baptismal date, and we actually did end up finding him and teaching him a lesson. I think that he took it well, and we are meeting again with him tomorrow. Friday we had planning which is lame, ate dinner at the bishop's house, and did more finding that night. Saturday was interesting, we did service for a lady that lives in another wards boundaries for a big chunk of the morning, and after that the members that knew her, which are in our ward, took us all out to lunch, which was way too nice of them. After that we went to our ward party at the bishop's house, and carved pumpkins and things like that. That is where the random horse picture came from. The bishop has 2 horses and one of the other elders just happened to be by me at that time, because all four of us were at the party. So yeah, that's where it came from. So I hope y'all enjoyed that random picture. I saw and enjoyed yours from the game as well. That night we ate with the same family that got us lunch that day. So they were waaaaayyyy to good to us. But because of Halloween we just had to stay in the rest of the night. Sunday was pretty cool. We had a baby blessing for a baby of a nonmember dad and recently returning less active mom. The dad has had a lot of missionaries work with him, and we will try to as well. I hope that because this is his first baby and whatnot, that his heart will be softened and that he will be more receptive to the message and have more of a desire to change. But we will see. The rest of the day went well too, we were actually able to see some of the less actives that we planned to, which was sweet cause a lot of the time the less actives aren't home or something like that. Monday we were allowed to go shopping and do laundry thank goodness, but other than that it was just a normal missionary day. Just the usual stuff, as was Tuesday. But today was definitely really cool. Plus, I am beyond excited for this Saturday because it is Laurens baptism!!!!! Aaaaaaaahhhhhhh I am just so happy for her and pumped that she is making this awesome decision. I think that she understands it all too, like she gets it. She isn't just doing it because she is, she actually knows that this is a huge step and is ready to take it. But anyways, thanks for everything that each of you do! I love getting emails, and especially pictures, things like that. I also have worn the Gameday shirt like 5 times already. Thanks Maddie and Stephen. Thanks also for the pants mom and dad. I haven't had Sister Wright fix them yet but I'm sure she will and I will see her on Friday to ask her. But other than that I am doing well, still trying to do things the right way and figure out how to talk to people and approach them and whatnot but I realize that it's more of a constant progression rather than an all at once kind of a thing. So I will, keep working on it and everything else that I can do better. But one thing that I have learned over the last little bit is that you don't have to be perfect right away. God doesn't expect you to do things perfectly, or he wouldn't have called you to do it. Also He is aware of our progress and is mindful of us. That is something that is really cool to me. Lastly I just want to share my personal testimony on the power of example, and what it can do for people in our lives. There are always times that we need to say something, or are prompted to go up and spontaneously say something or write something, call someone, whatever, but most of all how we are prompted to help others is by being prompted to do the right thing, so that we can be a good example to everyone around us. We might not always do the right thing, but that's ok, because as long as we are trying to do the right thing, people notice and want to do it as well. The most important thing that we can do is just choose the right and do what we know is right, so that we can set the right example for others. Because without our example, what are we? We are pretty much just an empty bag of words that mean nothing. But, if we are righteous in what we do and also use other spiritual gifts that God has given us, then that is when we become truly powerful, and become more like the savior. Thanks for everything everyone, I love you all and pray for you daily. Love, Elder Hatch

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