Monday, March 30, 2015

Mar 16, 2015

Here is comes. The once a month (that's what's it's turning out to be) large letter.

Wow, it feels good to send one of these things again. I apologize for delaying them each time. 

There have been so many things happening in the little town of Snowflake, AZ where I got transferred. I am a zone leader in the Snowflake Zone which covers Snowflake, Concho, St. Johns, Eager, Springerville, Luna, Pie Town, Nutrioso, etc. It is a HUGE zone! 

The work in our area in Snowflake had been rather slow for some time, but is now picking up tremendously! We had zero investigators on date in January when I got here, but we now have 7! We are both very excited and happy, but also very grateful the Lord has given us so much work to do. It has increased my testimony that the Lord WILL take care of our areas when we are away taking care of other responsibilities. A big portion of our week last week was spent in the valley for meetings and other events. 

We have one date for March 28 with A. He is a Mennonite searching for the truth. 

We have one two for April 4 with C and C. 

Curtis is an interesting character but the Lord has softened his heart so much! You would never guess by looking at him that he wanted to be baptized, but it shows how little we know/understand compared to the Lord. (Proverbs 3:5-6) 

C is amazing! He is the husband to one of our active members and we have seen so much progress in him in the last few months. He has been investigating for many years now, but I believe that now is his time. 

The next set of dates is a small family of 3. The husband (M) is Spanish (YES!), the wife (D) is Native and their 11 year old daughter (J) is a scholar. She honestly knows more than I do about religion. It helps quite a bit when her parents have questions, but at the same time, she has been attending a baptist church with friends for several months. 

The last one scheduled is in July. J has to figure out a few things first. He's a great guy! 

On a funnier/sadder note, we've had some pretty fun experiences with animals this week. 

The first and best one is the story of how Elder Hinds and I wrangled and saved the life of a horse. It was a cloudy weekday night when we left town for Concho. As we pulled around a corner, we saw a little horse walking by itself down the middle of main street. Luckily, Snowflake is a smallish town and people stay inside after dark for the most part. As we crept up behind the horse, it almost got hit several times by oncoming traffic, so we started flashing our lights at the oncoming cars so they'd see it. Us doing that attracted the attention of two different police officers who turned their lights on and between the three of us, the horse was boxed in. That's pretty much it. It was mad and tried to kill Elder Hinds, but that's a different story ;)

Next, (reader discretion is advised)

On our way to Concho that same night, as we were both reminiscing our heroic life saving event, I completely destroyed a Jackrabbit. It was suicidal I think, 'cause it waited until I was a foot away and jumped in front of the car. The next day on the way back, the same thing happened. This one ran the the middle of the road right as I passed it. I wonder why there are so many troubled rabbits out here..... 
I know that God loves us all. He is waiting for each of us to turn towards Him so that we can feel His love in our lives. He sent His Son to carry out probably the most important part of His plan. Due to the sacrifice of our Savior, Jesus Christ, we can never fail. No matter how much we fall short (and we WILL fall short), we will be able to start new. They both love us unconditionally, and that love has the power to fix any problem in life. Look to Them and They will comfort and guide you. 

I love you. My gratitude of your support increases each day I wake up. Keep it coming please! :D 

Elder Pilkington 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Feb 23 & Mar 1, 2015

FEBRUARY 23, 2015
I felt like this week was a huge improvement for us. The quality of our lessons was far better than it has been in the past, which made me happy :)

As we left zone conference last week, we decided to stop at Subway for dinner, but as we walked in, we realized that it was out of the zone and went back to the truck for the phone so we could call for permission. We later were grateful we made that step to be obedient. After we got the OK, we went back in and a lady got in line behind us. She was a member and was super happy to see us! I guess she had been praying for a while to be able to feed the missionaries as she has elders in her ward and they can't go in because she's single. She had really had a tough week prior to this miracle. When she walked in, she knew Heavenly Father had answered her prayers. She paid for us and sat next to us and we had a great conversation with her. As small as that seems, I know Heavenly Father cared about her enough to put us in that situation. If we would've left that prompting to seek permission, we would've completely missed that entire experience. It amazes me every time I see little miracles like that.

We had an excellent meeting with one of our bishops who was really inspired by Elder Nelson's leadership meeting on Saturday. We are developing a plan to best help the ward become and remain missionary minded. We're hopeful! :D They already do great with giving us referrals. I doubt there are more than 20 people that haven't been talked to by missionaries or our members.

Elder Nelson was inspired as he addressed us on Sunday. He said that the faith of the members there was 'tangible' which I think is a really neat way to describe it. We had a breakfast with our Stake President on Friday morning, and he asked if he could reserve benches for us and our investigators. Of course we accepted his offer and we filled all the space given to us. We were on the 2nd row listening to Elder Nelson. As good as his speech was, I thoroughly enjoyed hearing from the Snowflake Temple President and his wife. They stressed the importance of temple attendance, which is the only reason I'm excited to go home.

MARCH 1, 2015
So, first things first. We just got done with a WILD FIRE WING CHALLENGE. I won a hat, because I finished all 12 burning wings in 3 minutes, but I was still trying to swallow some meat when it hit 3 min. Had I finished it all, I would've won a free meal too. Be proud of me for that one and PRAY that my bum bum doesn't light on fire when that stuff comes out tonight.
As for transfer news, I'm staying with Elder Hinds again as zone leaders in Snowflake. I'm really happy I'm staying here. We now have 3 people on date. J is on parole, so his date is set in the future. July 25 this year. A is a Mennonite, but is super interested in our religion. His date is set for the 28th of this month. C is married to an LDS woman and is slowly gaining interest. He'll hopefully keep his date of the 21st,  but he unfortunately hasn't come to church yet. We'll continue praying for that. Two of my former comps, Elder Clements and Elder Strike are now in the zone, which I'm super happy about!