This week went by a lot faster than last week. The fact that it has only been 6 days since the last time I emailed home helps a lot haha.
We got to go to the Memphis Temple! It closes at the end of this month for a 20-month long remodel, so I was very grateful for the opportunity to go before then! It'll be fun to come again when it has re-opened and see how it has changed. I'm hoping I'll be able to help with tours and missionary related stuff for the temple open house, etc. when it reopens! But we will see!
After we visited the temple we had the opportunity to have kind of a Q and A session with the Memphis Temple President which was cool! We got back later that night, but from then through all of the next day I could just really feel the spiritual difference in myself having been to the temple.
We were gonna have an awesome lesson that next day but the lady was sick so we had to cancel. So we adjusted plans and did some biking. We were outpacing a train for a little while, which was fun! Train horns are loud.
We got to teach Anette after almost 2 weeks without seeing her. I've been teaching her once or twice a week since I got here 3+ months ago. She's a sweet old black lady with some back problems, and some learning disabilities. We read another chapter of the Book of Mormon with her and talked about the importance of coming to church with us. She has been really struggling with leaving her old church behind, even though she loves the Book of Mormon and President Monson... it has been a little frustrating. So I asked her if she still wanted to be baptized on October 14th. To my pleasant surprise, she said she still wanted to try. And she said she would come to church this week! Yay! It's awesome to see her progressing! And it would be very very awesome for her to be baptized! We just have to keep working with her to make sure she is "all in."
Later that day we got talking with this sweet 80 year old lady who was living in the same cute little southern home that she grew up in. She talked about her family, the growth of Collierville, her flowers, and in classic southern style, talked for a good 15-20 minutes. She seemed like she enjoyed the company, and we probably coulda sat and listened to her for a full hour but we had places to be, doors to knock, souls to save, all that. Fun stuff, though. She invited us back another time to tell her all about Idaho and Arizona. :)
We have biked less this week than last week. Members have given us rides quite a bit, which we appreciate very much. I feel bad asking for rides so often, though, and it really makes me miss having a car to drive around. :/ it's kinda like not having a driver's license again.
Oh yeah and we now have Facebook and smart phones.
On Thursday, we had our zone conference. After rumors and all that, we finally got smart phones to replace our fun flip phones and received the "go" to begin using Facebook as a tool for missionary work!
So now the tablet I had to buy for the mission, and the phone we are using are Samsung. My inner Apple fanboy is dying a little bit because of all the weird quirks and confusingness of everything, but it's a major upgrade from those flip phones. Going back to Apple at the end of my mission will probably be another headache haha.
Apparently we are one of 12 missions the First Presidency has chosen to begin using smartphones. Lucky us!
Facebook has been weird. I didn't like Facebook very much after like my freshman year, and my liking declined since then. It felt weird logging in and seeing everyone's dumb political posts and memes and stuff for a while haha. It was like "oh yeah that's why I don't like this lol"
(I saw that there is so much new music out though, yiiiiikkkeerrrrrs)
(Because Facebook bought Instagram it keeps showing me ads for Instagram and tells me I have 101+ notifications from Instagram, but I can't download it or anything, and it makes me miss it a lot yiiiiiiikkkeesssss)
So I pretty much muted/unfollowed everyone but my family, LDS related pages, and other missionaries, rather than unliking/unfriending because we are supposed to keep our (good) likes up so people can tell that we are real human beings haha.
I can respond to church related questions there anytime, but I'm still expected to only communicate with family, friends, etc. via email on my p days. I can't use Facebook to do that.
I wish we got a little more instruction on how to like... actually use Facebook as a missionary tool. Because I'm friends with a bunch of the awesome members down here, now, but like... finding new people to teach on there? Idk I guess we will figure it out as we keep moving! Any ideas??
So yeah that's the big news from this week!
We did some more biking on Saturday. Had some high schoolers jeer at us out of their cars which was weird. I try to please everyone and I'm pretty used to being on people's good sides, so idk I had a prideful moment like "don't those stupid kids know that I'm a multipublished author and professional photographer and an eagle scout and...and... [essentially] If they knew how cool I was, they wouldn't be doing that." (Ok so my thought wasn't exactly that dumb sounding, but you get the idea.)
It made me think about how Christ himself must have felt being mocked and scourged during his earthly ministry. "Don't you know who I am? I created the ground beneath your feet. I am the God your fathers worshipped, I parted the red sea. Billions have and billions will worship my name. I knew you before this life, and I am here to make it possible for you to be forgiven of the things you are doing right now."
So thinking of that really helped put me in my place and just kinda enjoy the moment of being shouted at by some dumb kids who just don't know what they're doing. It's impossible to suffer more than He did. (See 1 Nephi 19:9)
Biking was hard that day, though, we did a lot of it. As we biked home in the dark, the road to our apartment from where we were was pretty hilly. Downhill is pretty fun. But biking uphill is tough, my dudes. Especially when you have biked all day and aren't in shape. We got back to the apartment drenched and I, at least, was very sore the next day. Gotta do what you gotta do to get the thunder thighs.
At the same time, though, biking up and down hills of a country road in Tennessee past the occasional firefly after sunset sounds pretty cool. All in the way you look at it, I guess.
Wendy and Anette both came to church on Sunday! And apparently Wendy went to a relief society bake off thing and actually won hahaha. (I was a little miffed they didn't hit us up to be the judges but itsk) But it was awesome to have them both there! We then had two dinners and a game night. Sundays are good.
Anyway, it has been a good week! It hasn't felt super busy, but looking back on it, we actually did a lot. We are looking forward to a pretty awesome week this week, meeting with Anette and Wendy again, plus a few of the people who said we could come back, plus my first District Meeting as the District Leader, and a quick trip to Arkansas for a Doctors appointment for Elder Bingham.
So yeah! All kinds of good stuff behind and ahead of us. Things are good in Collierville. I have managed to stay out of additional bushes while on my bike, so y'all must be praying harder for my safety. I appreciate that. My clumsy butt needs it. :)
Love you all! Have a super week, and enjoy General Conference!!
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866 Schilling Rd, apt. 103
Collierville, TN 38017
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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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Elder Oliver Wrigley Dahl
Arkansas Little Rock Mission
905 Kierre Dr
North Little Rock AR 72116