Monday, August 27, 2012

Service is just about killing me-are you up to a challenge

Hello!!! How is everyone?
 Things are going really well here! We had a very busy week. Stuff to do in our area and in the Zone. It was a new transfer so we had people who "white washed" an area (two new missionaries in an area) and had to drive 50 miles to give them supplies because they had zero things to teach with. So that took up a large chunk of the day. We were running all over the place trying to get things done. We did some service for the C family who is so great. Such a solid family. They told us how they are having an armadillo digging stuff up so I said I'd take care of that and would get a hold of a trap and bring on Sunday. While I was about to mow the lawn. Right there on the edge of the grass part way in the driveway I had one of those sudden "spidy sense" moments I had the thought" jump out of the way." I felt like something large was on its way. I dove out of the way for no apparent reason at the moment I thought. Then realized there was a mini van a couple inches away from me at this moment. Sister Castros 20 year old daughter was trying to avoid the trash can on the other side of the driveway (they have a nice house with a very large driveway) and didn't look to see if there were any PEOPLE on the otherside. She came running out of the car freaking out feeling so bad. So of course I had to give her a hard time. My adrenaline was going, I had a racing heart. Oh wow I was litterally a couple of  inches from being under a car. We ate dinner over there last night and I kept giving her a hard time about it and her mom loves to join in with me haha. She's a really nice girl and I should probably stop and just let it go. She did alnost "kill" me though hahaha.
 Elder Anderson is my new companion. I knew him before and was so excited for him to come with me. We are very alike except he's a little weirder than I am. We are both tall and skinny and goofy goofy Elders who love to joke and have a good time. We mean business though! We really have a lot of goals and things we would like to see happen. He only has 11 weeks left so I might be in the area for a bit longer but i'd be okay with that. We had a really good Zone Leader council meeting on Friday with President Snow and all of the other Zone Leaders. Elder Heimuli was there and holy cow that Elder is doing so good. He is on fire right now I want to serve with him again, He also goes home in 11 weeks so I wont get the chance. He's grown so much and is really doing some good stuff there in his zone and area. The meeting was great. Its just that a council we talk about the zones and about what we need to do about the Gospel its so fantastic and President is so inspired we truly are blessed to have him here.
 We had some really great experiences with members this week. We are trying really hard to challenge them and grow their testimonies. There is one family that has 11 kids 2 of them are on a mission and others are married. They do have a 13 a 10 and a 7 year old still at home and 4 of their daughters live in the same street as them. Everytime we eat over there they all come. A lot of them have not been that active recently but have been growing a lot and coming to church every week the past few weeks. They are so neat. All so funny and you can just feel the friendship and love they have for each other. We have been challenging them to introduce the Gospel to someone new. This family already has done that for years. They were the first Spanish members here in Peach Tree City over 10 years ago. They are really fun to teach with all the Grandkids and kids running around. They make it fun. We can joke a bit with them but still be spiritual. We talked about Sacrifice. If you have not seen the John Tanner stroy you need to watch it. (youtube i bet) we watched the short video and then talked about the things that we can sacfrifice for the Lord. Time, missionaries, money, talents. tons of things. We all really got to thinking. This question is for you at home! Whatcan you all sacrifice for the Lord? Remember the excuse I'm busy or I'm poor or whatever does not work with sacrifice because if it were easy then it wouldn;t be a sacrifice then would it? Sit down as a family and pray and then decide something you could sacrifice/ TV or maybe go mow a neighbors yard whatever it is make a sacrifice and I promise you that blessings will come in to your life that you have no idea that God had them waiting for you. I have been making lots of sacrifices lately not only do I feel the Spirit more but i feel better, I have been blessed so much. So what can you put on the alter? in oder to receive certain blessings we need to sacrifice. First we repent of whatever little thing keeps god's power from our life (remember repentance is not always a sin it could be anything that you could do better, like read the scriptures more, pray more tell mom I love you more, help mom more. etc.) Repent, and then sacrifice you will see the blessings flood into your life! Thats my invitation to all of you. I want to hear about how it goes!
 It is going really good here. Church was great yesterday I learned a lot from the classes and got some newat revelation of soemthings I need to do. Maybe I'll tell you about it someday. Just not much time today.
Sounds like life is back in the norm. Kids going to doctors. School. No rest haha thus is life right?
I hope everyone is doing good and I want a letter form ALL of the kids this week. Jared you have not written me once I'm calling you out! I want to hear how highschool is!!!!! how you're gym is doing all that stuff. I never hear anything from Jared!
hope everything is going great.  Love Tanner

Monday, August 20, 2012

You can call me Knight Hawk

This transfer has blown by. I say that every transfer but this time I mean it even more so. 

Hearing about all of the sheep stuff sounds like fun! Next year you will all do better!! First year went pretty well.

Elder Searle

Making fondant roses. Oh the skills he will have when he comes home.

Corn snake 

So after the sudden change of companions things slowed down just a tiny bit. I went on exchanges with Elder Gautuvi (now to by) he is Samoan and from Bountiful. He graduated with elder heimuli actually! We had a really good time. He is a great Elder. He just wants to learn the "best practices" and eat up all he can to be a good missionary. We went to teach someone and they were not home it turns out one of the members in the English ward he serves  lives on the same street so we stopped in to ask if they knew any other Hispanics on the street or in the area that we could try to visit. (its hard to find hispanics here they are very spread out) Well turns out he has his Falconry Master cert. He has a red tailed hawk. I told him how brenen really wants to do falconry and they are so excited they starting telling me how great it is and how he needs to do it and that its so worth it. They are an incredible family. Both converts of many years now. They adopted one boy. He died at age 16 of brain cancer. The Gospel has really helped them through that. They have some incredible experiences and it was privilege to meet them. Oh yeah and I helped with the hawk. Brenen don't be to jealous. I printed out some pics of it that I'll send to him but I'll email them to you know. 

 We had some great teaching experiences this week. J and Y I think i've mentioned them before. They lost her mom and their one year old in the same accident only a couple months ago. They have so many deep and profound questions. I mean naturally they just lost their family. Seeing them get happier and happier over time has been very exciting. They are great, great people and the gospel has really been blessing them. They are moving along great now and really want to know whats true.

There is a gospel parallel somewhere in this picture
 Well I got some news last night. I will becoming zone leader here in this area and elder anderson (from canada) will be my companion. I have always wanted to serve with him, but because of the fact we are both older missionaries we have always been with younger or "help needed" missionaries. Neither of us have been zone leaders before and there have not been spanish zone leaders in well over a year. So we will get to learn how to be zone leaders together. He only has two transfers left so i might kill him off and be in this area for awhile. I am just so glad I didnt have to go english. They turned this area into the Zone leader area and we get to keep working spanish. I love the branch and love speaking spanish I really feel like I'm hitting that next level with it! And Elder Anderson and I have always gotten along plus he likes to work hard like I do so we are going to tear up this area I'm so pumped! 

The new transfer starts on Wednesday so I have couple more days to relax before even more responsability hits me!!! being a zone leader with someone else who has never been zone leader is going to be a fun experience. Trial and error, I have a feeling thats how we will learn most of it hahaha.

Love you all!!!!!!

Good luck in school! 

love tanner

Monday, August 13, 2012

New companion

So.....This always happens to me. I am sent to areas to fix them or get sent companions who need help, or some sort of a thing like that. Elder Searle and I had really started to work great together. He had really stepped up and started to come out of his shell and then I got a call that President was making an emergency change and he would be sending me a new companion. Lucky Elder Searle got to go up to Chamblee!! My new companion is Elder Serrano. His parents are from Mexico but he grew up in California and Currently is from Arizona. Its really great having a native speaker. I don't have to do all the talking now. Its very even and shared now its really nice!

 This week was kind of rough teaching wise. We has members with us on a lot of days and no one was home. We have a lot of people that we are teaching who are working in Alabama so they get home really late some days.

We had a great experience on Tuesday though. We are teaching a few different people who are all neighbors to an English ward member. Even though they don't speak Spanish they are great friends with all of those that we are teaching and they really want them to get the blessings that come with being a member. We are only allowed to teach Preach my Gospel lessons when we have a member so we took A over the this family's house on afternoon. We taught the Restoration and then committed him to a day that he could be baptized. The Spirit was very strong. We asked the members to share their testimony and I translated it. Even though he could not understand the words that they said we all felt the Spirit that came with their testimonies. It filled the room and he could feel the love that these people had for him. These families are true examples of love your neighbor. They can't speak to each other. They show that they care by acts. Their neighbors cut their grass. Fix their roof. Bring them treats and things to eat they just help each other with out being asked. They love each other even though they can't understand what is said. Their served in Argentina and is a Branch councilor in our Branch so he has helped them translate at times but mostly its all acts and good deeds.
 We have been really focusing on getting the members to help us and they have started to really step to it. We are teaching them and their families and then committing them to helping us for the love of the Lord. We have had some neat experiences with that. We had fun helping the M family (one of my favorites here) make gum paste flowers(you use to decorate cakes) ill send pictures later I forgot my camera today but we had a lot of fun designing and then painting and molding these flowers just talking and having a great time. This Branch is really different than the Chamblee Branch. I really like it, but also miss Chamblee. Its really calm and peaceful which is really nice. Chamblee is full of energy and crazy kids. All the kids here are very well behaved and the Spirit can be felt in Church. The Branch here is really small but they are fantastic and are on the climb up to greatness! 

I hope you all have had a great weekend. good luck with starting school. Mom send me some pics of brenens lax tryouts if you have any! I had a dream about a tool that i could make him to help practice shooting goals. Maybe i'll draw it up and dad could make it. Or i'll just do it when i get home (when ever that is)

Love you all!!!

Love Tanner

Monday, August 6, 2012

The work rolls on

This was a great week!!!
We have been given a lot of new direction and I have loved it. President pulled me aside after a Leadership meeting on Friday and pulled out part of a letter I had written two weeks back (we write each week to him by email) at first I thought I might be getting a lecture but it was exactly the opposite. I expressed some real struggles and challenges I was facing with the way missionary work was being done. I didn't feel like the work we were doing is how it should be done. I said I felt like I was beating a cement wall with a chisel by that I meant I was working all day long and working really hard but a chisel is not an effective way to get through a cement wall even though you are working very hard. I told him how I had been praying and studying and asking local leaders and I could not figure it out. Well the week after I wrote that letter he gave us the direction we needed to go. He taught us about the way the First Presidency wants missionary work done by using Chapter 5 in the church leadership auxiliaries manual. WOW!!! I learned I was doing missionary work sooooo wrong. It was not our fault I was doing missionary work the way I was taught. I even work a little bit differently than a lot of Elders and I still was so off. Missionary is not what everyone thinks. We play the smallest role when missionary work is being done right. We are to teach and thats about it. The ward council really leads the missionary work. This direction was the answer to my prayers I was looking for so we talked about that and talked about how Elder Searle and I are starting to do a lot of good things here in the area and he said if i keep doing what I am doing with the same questions I asked and the same attitude that this area is going to explode!!

Baptism day
 We had a really good week I'll start with the best part first, L, G and Dl got baptized on Sunday!!! They were supposed to be baptized Saturday night but their baby sister had to go to the hospital. She was a preemie baby and her lungs dont work well. She is on full time oxygen. She stopped breathing for a little bit. Everything is fine they left the hospital that night and she was at church Sunday just smiling. This baby smiles more than any child I have ever seen. She is 6 months old but should only be 4 months old right now. She just looks around and smiles and everyone all the time I love it!!!They were baptized and then confirmed, I got to confirm Luis the oldest boy it was a great experience. It was fast and testimony meeting I normally let the members bear their testimonies because its there time and I bear my testimony everyday. The Spirit hit me so strong It basically kick me out of my seat I had to go up and bear my testimony. 

 We have a lot of other people who are really close to baptism. We just need to get them to church. The members are really getting behind us and starting to invite their friends to dinners or to meet with us or ask if they can come out with us! its been great. This Branch is really small but they are very firm and willing to help us. Its a great mix of countries in this branch as well. Argentina, Colombia, the DR, mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, Ecuador etc. its very neat, especially eating with them we can talk about the different foods for hours I love it!!! 

 WOW the rodeo looked like so much fun!!! Seriously I miss summers with y'all so much!!!! I just miss summer with the Charlesworths we always have soooooooo much fun I think we are the funnest family in the world during the summer! Especialyl when you get the whole clan together!

LOVE you all, Love tanner

Note from mom Tanner said that olga is an coconut statue that gets into mischief in the apartment.
After Olga strikes
Before Olga