October 11, 2011
We went on a 3-day exchange with a struggling companionship in my old area! It was so fun to be able to sleep in my old apartment and walk up and down the same streets I walked on when I was a greenie. The exchange went really well. We started the first morning by having an intense discussion about Isaiah 40:29-31 and 3 Nephi 28 and his reasons for being on a mission . . . I told him something that Elder Snyder had told me: "Once you are set apart to be a missionary, you are cursed. For these two years, it is impossible to find happiness in anything than missionary work and giving yourself 100% to it. The more you try to do anything else, the more miserable you will be." The more we talked, we realized that his problems all came down to him being lazy. Right after studies, we cleaned out their apartment, including getting rid of the years of missionary junk that was just piling up in the apartment--shoes, pants, white shirts, ugly ties, board games, and other miscellaneous miscellanea. It took two trips to the dumpster to get rid of all the space-eating clutter in the apartment, and then we started cleaning everything else. By the time we were done, it felt like a celestial room.
After that we went to work. This particular companionship has really been struggling with finding (0 new investigators this entire transfer), so we decided to find some fresh people for them to teach. It worked out really well--we stopped by a couple that I had found with Elder Silva, who we were only able to teach once because they got too busy. We had found them because they had been invited to Church by a member friend back then. They know the entire bishopric (apparently they went to watch a movie at the bishop's house with him and his wife last week), and they are super excited to learn . . . It was such a blessing, and exactly what that companionship needed to get them re-excited. I have talked to the elder I was with every day since then, and he has been doing really well. He has been getting up on time and studying and everything. It's only a matter of time before he is having the time of his life again. When people feel the Spirit, it does miracles (Mosiah 5). . . .