I don't have a whole lot to write home about this week. And I wrote out this whole email once already and for some reason it disappeared. So I'm kinda ticked about that haha. So... here goes round two!
I got to go on exchanges with Elder Billings, who was one of my zone leaders when I was in Hope. He's awesome! We started the exchange off by praying about where to go knock some doors. After picking a spot, we headed over, and found a cool person behind the second door we knocked on. She reluctantly walked outside and said she'd give us 5 minutes to hear our "spiel." By the end of the 5 minutes, she was excited about reading the Book of Mormon, and double checked with us a few times to make sure we would come back!
I also got to practice my Spanish with one of her neighbors, which impressed Elder Billings, but wouldn't have impressed anyone who passed Spanish II in high school. A few doors later, we walk up and get ready to knock and then mariachi music starts playing loudly from inside. Elder Billings just turned to look at me and said "You're up, Elder Dahl," and then we laughed hard enough we had to pray that nobody actually opened the door haha. Idk, it was funny. You had to be there.
Back in Benton the next day, we tried our neighbors we helped move in a while ago. They were super drunk, but only told us after welcoming us in. So we teased them a little bit in the way you can only really tease drunk people before leaving to try back at a better time. (Oh, you've been drunk every time we've stopped by? Maybe that's God giving you a sign you should stop!)
We also got to visit with a lady who works at Baskin Robbins about her grandmother's high school experience with New Orleans voodoo, so that was interesting!
On Thursday, we had our district council. The Hermanas walked in with another guy in a white shirt, tie, and nametag, and so we were kinda confused. Turns out he'd had a pretty bad bike wreck while serving in the Portland Oregon mission and is home for a transfer or so. So it was good having more than just 2 other missionaries in our district council!
Later that day, we also did some service. Cleaned out some flowerbeds, and then played tug-of-war with some rosebush trimmings in a tarp against the covered bed of a truck. We eventually won!
Friday had just what Elder Dahl needed. Elder McKay of the Seventy came and did a zone conference with all of the missionaries on the Arkansas side, and it was really really good. I learned a lot. Elder McKay is brilliant and I want to be as sharp and passionate and quick-on-my feet as he is. We had a MLC meeting with him afterwards, and I learned a lot there, too! We got some good counsel as to how we can help our mission keep improving in the next couple months!
Saturday was also good! I woke up to an email from BYU saying I got in! And then before we started personal study, we were able to have a lesson with someone in a member's home and set a baptismal date goal with her! It was awesome. And right before we invited her, she quietly exclaimed that she could feel "those chills," which was the phrase she used to explain what the Spirit feels like. Man. There's no better feeling than knowing you've been able to help someone feel of God's love in a way that is that powerful.
We had a pot luck after church yesterday, and then went to visit that lady that fed us lunch last week. We'd sent the hermanas over, since she's from El Salvador, and they'd learned that she was a member, actually! She just hadn't been since she was a teenager. So we had a really special visit with her. It was cool to hear her say that something has felt missing in all the time she's been away from the church. She's planning to come back for the first time in a decade or two (or 3) this Sunday.
So there you have it! I did have a cool little spiritual thought at the end of the first draft of this email, but I don't remember exactly how I expressed it. But it was great, take my word for it. Something along these lines:
The Book of Mormon isn't just true - it convinces us of the divinity of the Savior
The Church isn't just true - it is organized and operated by the Savior
I don't do the Lord's work - He does. I just get lucky enough to be used by Him sometimes. :)
1916 Brandon Rd, apt. A2
Bryant, AR 72022
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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(After June 20, 2017)
Elder Oliver Wrigley Dahl
Arkansas Little Rock Mission
905 Kierre Dr
North Little Rock AR 72116