Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Week #37 - Sunrise, Sunset, Swiftly Go the Days

Hey Family!

This week was great!

I went on a trade off with Elder Koegler on Wednesday. That was way fun. He is a funny guy. We took sunset pictures just for kicks and giggles.

Sister Harrison fed us stew chicken foot which was awesome as always. I think that might have been Elder Christensen's first chicken foot experience.

Saturday was good. We got to see a ton of people and meet some new people as well.

Yesterday was pretty interesting. We talked to this guy for an hour just about doctrinal things. He has read over the Book of Mormon three times and "knows it is true," yet he had a few opinions that didn't make much sense and didn't understand priesthood authority very well, so we invited him to pray about it more and continue reading. He was really cool though.

Not too many crazy things happened this week as opposed to last week but no biggy!

Love and miss you guys!

Elder Graham

Lots of awesome sunsets this week!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Week #36 - He Who Laughs... Lasts.

Hey Family!

Lots of funny little things happened this week.

I got to go to a big mission-wide district leader training meeting which was really good. I learned a ton and got to see a lot of people.

Happy Birthday Elder Knight!
Elders Graham, Gardiner, Knight, Christensen,
Biddulph & Koegler 
Elder Knight's birthday was Tuesday and we made a chocolate cake for him and bought white grape cider to celebrate like classy men.  
On Wednesday we were teaching someone, and this little girl just sat down by us with a joint in her hand. She opened it up and took all the marijuana out and threw it on the ground. It looked pretty liberating. It was hard not to laugh. Someone was NOT going to be happy.

Thursday Elder Christensen and I were walking down some street, and I watched a little school kid just drop his drawers and start peeing on another kid. The moms were just like "AHH! AY BWOY STOP DAT NAH!!" Super funny. Sorry for the Patois input but there wasn't a better way to describe their reaction.

We went to KFC for lunch on Friday (first time I have had KFC since I've been out) and on the drive toward the place, an oncoming van swerved into our lane and was coming at us from far away. Next thing we know, the van swerved off the road into a dirt bank and up a little hill. It had quite a bit of air time. When it landed, the bumper came off and it was crazy. We didn't really know how to react so we just did we do best: laughed....hard.
Sunday was a little frustrating. An investigator who promised us she would be at church didn't make it. So we are going to figure out what the deal is later this week.

Hope everyone at home is doing great! Congrats to Chelsea & Wyatt for getting engaged!!

Love and miss you guys!

Elder Graham

Last Week's P-Day at the only bowling alley in Jamaica
Elders Graham, Gardner, Knight, Biddulph & Koegler

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Week #35 - People Throw Rocks at Things That Shine

Hey Family!

Tuesday was great. Happy 30th birthday Mama Graham! Wait, it's 30 or 31. I forget...ANYWHO (dodged that bullet) Hope you enjoyed the picture from Tarieq.  Mom got this picture from Tarieq, an awesome member in Spanish Town, while out to birthday dinner - made my night!  Cody's note says, "Happy Birthday Mama Graham and Elder Christensen's note says "Happy Birthday from your grandson" (missionary lingo, because Cody is his trainer, he's known as Christensen's dad.  Hence me, the grandma - not feeling old now WHATSOEVER). Notice how I didn't mention it in my email last week for dramatic effect and then BOOM. There it was. Alright back to missionary work.

On Wednesday I got to see a couple miracles so that is awesome. First off, an investigator named Anthony (who had previously told us that the Book of Mormon would not lead to "becoming a Mormon" for him) accepted to work toward being baptized on November 22! I also got to see the power of a priesthood blessing work immediately which I have never seen before.

Thursday was kind of interesting. After a lesson, we were getting ready to leave when we looked down the lane and saw a lady walking away while a different lady, who was clearly very angry and offended by the first woman, just started picking up rocks and throwing them at her. Later on when it got dark, someone kept trying to throw rocks at us! It was so dark and there were lots of places to hide so we couldn't figure out where they were coming from, but we would hear them skipping on the ground toward us and act like we were in the Matrix and dodge them. We're weird.

Friday was awesome. We met a guy at his house which doubled as a bag juice factory and he gave us some free bag juice which was so nice. They sell it for way cheap like $70 JD for a bag of 12 of them. That's close to 70 cents for like 2 liters of bag juice....YES.

Sunday, Elder Christensen and I both got to speak and they let us choose topics. Miraculously, I talked about how we access grace by faith, and he talked about how we exercise faith. Not planned. But they were perfectly tag-teamed talks. I'm no longer afraid to talk in front of large groups - it kinda just faded away after talking with so many strangers all the time I guess haha.

Love you and miss you all!
Elder Graham

Pulled a fast one on some other missionaries who always take bathroom pit stops at our house throughout the day
There are some creepy Dora paintings on the walls of schools around town

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Week #34 - Straighten Up and Fly Right

Hey family!

This week was pretty busy to say the least.

Elder Christensen got to extend one of his first official baptism invitations on Tuesday and it was awesome. Lisa didn't even hesitate! He is doing an awesome training me so far.

Wednesday was zone meeting. Not much else, but we learned quite a bit about teaching skills just because 90% of the zone is training right now.

We spent a lot of Thursday doing some bike fixes. So much for Elder Christensen's "brand new bicycle" right? It was good though. But now my bike is having some minor issues so basically we have been on foot for most of the week which I am fine with. It's really easy to talk to people on foot, and we are pretty good at it.

The Jelly Coconut
(and accompanying wicked machete)
Friday was great. We cracked open some jellies (basically just not-ripe coconuts I think?) According to JamaicaTravelAndCulture.comCoconuts are either harvested at their jelly stage or their mature stage. The jelly stage occurs between seven and nine months. During this stage the coconut yields sweet refreshing coconut water and a thin layer of soft, jelly like flesh. The coconut is fully mature after 10 to 12 months, when the flesh becomes thicker and more solid.  YUM!!

In the evening we saw someone for the first time. Her name is Erika and she basically told us that when we contacted her on the street last Sunday (her birthday) She had been praying for God to send someone to help her live a better life I guess and then we showed up and just invited her to hear our message later on in the week. She also said that the Book of Mormon might just be an answer to her prayer but she would have to look into it. This type of stuff does not happen every day so I thank the Spirit and Elder Christensen's desire to talk with everyone at all times.

For General Conference, it rained hard both Saturday and Sunday for the first time in like four months, ending a pretty long drought. Anyway, Conference was awesome. I don't know why, but I couldn't stop thinking about what Robert D. Hales said: "Straighten up and fly right." It's so simple yet so profound. If you're doing something wrong, fix it. Not sure why THAT was the quote that stuck but it was and it is shaping my mission now. Hope you all had a good gen conf experience as well!

We are going bowling today at the only bowling alley in all of Jamaica so that will be great!

Until next week!


Elder Graham