Fun quick stories for the week: talked with a lady who just moved from Nigeria, received a crash course in Hinduism, built a fence, had a guy complain to us that Jesus was black, met a WW2 AND Viet Nam veteran, and a guy with a swastika tattoo on the same day.
Oh yeah, and I went to Mississippi.
But first, I helped put a fence together, set a baptismal date with our one consistent investigator, and got to give my first priesthood blessing, which was really neat. It was cool to see how the words and promises came to mind as I blessed this guy with health and an increased desire and ability to quit smoking. The spirit was there, no doubt.
On Wednesday, we had a district meeting and then I traded places with one of my MTC buddies, Elder Barney, and got to spend the next day in Oxford, Mississippi on "exchanges." It's about an hour and a half drive away, and a pretty different feel. It was really fun. In the first neighborhood we went to knock doors in, we got like 5/7 people to open the door and give us a return appointment, which... is kinda unheard of?
I haven't heard how those appointments went but I hope they went well! The rest of the day, we had less success tracting, but did interupt somebodys weed smoking party in an apartment complex, and have this Indian guy invite us in to teach us about Hinduism and learn more about Christianity. That was pretty interesting, especially to see some of the commonalities. (33 million ["give or take about a million," the guy said] gods not being one of those haha)
The next day we drove back to Collierville and then that evening had the chance to have a member drive us to Moscow, a super tiny town about 30 mins away, to visit some less active members. It was around then that I started realizing I had a cold.
The next day the cold got worse, and in the evening it finally poured rain on us while we were out. We had umbrellas, but the back of my pants from the knees down were soaked. It cooled down the air, thankfully, cause it had been hellishly hot and humid earlier in the day, so it actually felt really good. The rain came down the hardest I've seen it here so far. Thunder on the umbrella, rivers in the street and gutters especially. Socks got wet, and then the back of my shirt... a nice lady pulled over and gave us a ride back to our car but I had to put the umbrella away before getting in, and in the 2 seconds between doing that and jumping into her back seat, I feel like I might as well have dumped a gallon of water in her back seat haha. It was awesome. There was thunder and lightning, the whole shebang. That late in the day, and with as wet as we already were, it almost didn't even matter after that how wet we got cause we were on our way home anyway. Thankfully the cold only lasted about 3 days. If it were up to me I'd have slept for 55/62 of those hours but I kept to the schedule, and endured going out anyway. Wasn't easy but Heavenly Father didn't want the work to slow down, and he wanted me to know that I could do it.
Last fun story, in one of the wards Elder Johnson and I are over, there is a Dahl family! Only the dad is here for now, since he's working, but yesterday I learned that we are related! (Our grandpa's are cousins, so whatever that relation is!) So that's cool!
We had another kinda bible bash this week (it was very polite haha) and no one could win because that's how bible "bashes" work. Learned a couple awesome lessons from this one, though.
1. If there is a verse in the bible that the Book of Mormon supposedly "contradicts," there are 2 options.
Option 1: that contradiction is based solely on interpretation and personal opinion
Or, more commonly, Option 2: there is another verse in the bible that also contradicts the verse in question. Which doesn't help the bible's case for being "perfect and the only word of God you need."
2. Which is why I'm thankful for the Book of Mormon. It clarifies and answers so many questions, and helps us understand which interpretation is correct. It adds so much incredible doctrine that has been lost. It provides a single source to which everything we believe can lean on. We don't have to rely on just the Bible. That'd be exhausting, and millions of people have had to, and continue to so in such different and frequently opposing ways.
3. Furthermore, if the Book of Mormon is the word of God, (Which witness I have received by the Holy Ghost) then Joseph Smith was a prophet of God who restored Christ's original church back to the earth, and received the authority and power of God like prophets of old. And if that is true, then we have a living prophet on the earth today, and all modern revelation is of equal value to the scriptures. How cool is that?
So arguments over the Bible "vs." The Book of Mormon aren't fun, but I'm always left with a stronger testimony than before. The two books don't contradict, but as I've read more of the bible in my personal studies, my love for it has grown. There's so much evidence and support for modern revelation, it's awesome.
Anyway, another week has come and gone! It was fast, and as I was thinking about it, it didn't really seem like a lot happened. But as I'm reading over this, it actually was kinda eventful. Hope y'all are doing well and enjoying your summer! I'd love to hear all about it! Have a great week!
Address: 866 Schilling Rd. Collierville, TN. Apt. #103, 38017
Serving A Mission!
What's all this about? As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, it is expected of me that I will serve a two-year mission. (And yeah, the "riding bikes and wearing nametags and knocking on doors" kind of mission.) But this isn't something I'm doing because it's expected of me... I'm doing this because the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ has blessed my life SO much, in SO many ways. I can't think of a greater honor or responsibility than being able to play a part in someone's story of finding and enjoying these blessings, too.
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(May 31-June 19 2017)
Elder Oliver Wrigley Dahl
2005 N 900 E Unit 149
Provo, UT 84602
(After June 20, 2017)
Elder Oliver Wrigley Dahl
Arkansas Little Rock Mission
905 Kierre Dr
North Little Rock AR 72116