Monday, July 27, 2015

Corey's Baptism (Week 97)

This week was great! Lots of good stuff, chronological or order of awesomeness? I'll just recite things backwards.

Well on Saturday Elder Sheffield and I were blessed to attend  Corey's baptism of in Norman, OK. He was the investigator we worked with for 3 months until he and his member wife had to move to Noble for work. Well as soon as they moved we got in touch with the missionaries there (Sister Boulter from Lone Peak and Sister Duerch). They have helped Corey the rest of the way and on Saturday he was baptized! It was a great baptismal service! You could sense Corey's anxiety and excitement. It was cool. After the baptism the sisters, us, and some of the other missionaries signed the back of a picture of the OKC temple and wrote our thoughts and encouragement. They are working to be sealed in the temple next July! Just listening to their excitement about going to the temple filled me with joy. I am so excited for their family!

On Friday we arranged for our native american investigator C~ (who is huge into native lore) and his two sons to have a pow wow for the boy scouts in the ward. Friday evening we got to go to a members property out in the country where the boy scouts were camping and got to watch 20 minutes of D~ and M~'s performance. It was pretty cool. They loved the experience and got to meet some of the church members they go to school with. The boys want to go to Wednesday night activities now. Hopefully they can make it this coming week.

On Wednesday we picked up two new investigators, Dn~ and Cl, a young couple that has only been married for 3 months. We met Dn~ from knocking doors. He and his wife are both from a small town in Texas and were raised as Baptists. He has actually been to Salt Lake temple square and BYU, Provo campus for tours. He told us that our religion has always fascinated him. He told us that this was the first time he had met missionaries. He invited us to come back. So last Wednesday we arrived for our set appointment and got to meet his wife. They are a super chill young couple. He is working for Halliburton and making music with his buddies on the side. I think he and I will get along. We first got to know them, and then he told us that he wanted to ask us questions (from a piece of paper) after the discussion. I was a little skeptical at first, not knowing if they were really his questions or stump the Mormon questions off the internet. Haha. Well, we opened with a prayer and we shared the message of the Restoration with them. We focused on families and eternal marriage. The whole time he was very open, respectful, and receptive. It was a powerful lesson taught to their questions, knowing that afterwards he'd go down the list. He said well you answered a ton of my questions. Haha, he had a few about the priesthood and couple of other common ones, but we were able to answer them simply. His other questions will be answered next time when we share the Plan of Salvation. Pumped for that. Before we even got out a Book of Mormon to give him, he asked for one. Before our stomachs even growled, he offered to feed us next Friday. They are awesome!

Monday, we taught Oreo and his wife after they fed us an amazing Venezuelan dinner. We taught him the Restoration with the Jenga tower and he basically taught it to us, haha. It was a lot of fun watching him and his wife work together.They are so funny. He is a great guy, and wants to know the truth for himself. There are a few members who are going to arrange a dinner or an activity in their home to invite them to which would be awesome!

For P-day we are going to Lawton to spend time with a few of the missionaries who are departing August 5th. It should be fun!

I love you all! thank you for you love and support.

Sincerely, Elder Watkins

Corey, Brandy and their two adorable daughters Gracelyn and Pacen

M~ and the drum

M~ and D~

They did four dances total. I will see if I can get some video from one of the members before I leave.

Bricks we made for a service project we did. Fun stuff.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Maps (Week 96)

This week had some good sun. Each week it gets hotter here. Cold water in a bottle is a good friend.

Me and Elder Sheffield had a pretty amazing experience on Saturday. We parked the car in Marlow and offered a prayer that Heavenly Father would guide us to an area and street where we would find people the Lord had prepared to receive the restored gospel. After the prayer we looked at our small map of Marlow. I had an idea where we should go, but before I shared it I confirmed with Elder Sheffield where he felt the spirit should have us go. He pointed to the exact area I was thinking of and then I asked him what street we should go to, and he said the exact same street that was in my mind. It was crazy. We drove there and talked to three people and all of them were very receptive and productive visits. Two of them, we are going to come back and see this Tuesday to teach. We are excited to see the fruit of our faith from that.

Sunday night we made a last second decision to try our eternal investigator. Logically there might have been a few better places to try, but something told me we should swing by. When we knocked the door our new investigator T~ answered and invited us in. It has been hard to meet with him because of his work schedule and how far away he lives. We had just happened to catch him over at the Busby's visiting family. Brother Busby was busy but asked us to visit with T~. We shared the doctrine of Christ and focused on the power of the Holy Ghost in our conversion. The spirit was strong and you could sense the hunger that T~ had to learn more. He is such a great example of faith and long-suffering. He has been through a lot these last two weeks, and it has been rough on him. We left him with a promise that if he would read the Book of Mormon and pray, his needs would be met. Keep him in your prayers.

Tomorrow we are having dinner at Oreo's, and we are going to be eating Venezuelan food. At church he explained to me that he has been investigating for about a year, but he hadn't been to church until three weeks ago when we first met him. His interest is growing every week. Sunday he and his wife stayed for all three hours of church! It was awesome.

We have found a lot of potential investigators this week, so next week will hopefully be filled with teaching new people. Keep praying for us!

I love you all. You're in my prayers.

Sincerely, Elder Watkins

Monday, July 13, 2015

Week 95

Its been a good week with some good progress.

H~ (Oreo is his nick name) was at church again with his wife! I think I told you about them last week. They are from Venezuela and just recently moved into the neighborhood by us. His wife is a member and they have only been married for a couple of years. He is Christian and is always looking for ways to grow his faith. It was really cool to watch him participate in the Gospel Principles class we teach at church. We taught the chapter Faith in Jesus Christ. It was one of the greatest classes we have ever had. Everybody was baring testimony and sharing their experiences with their faith. Oreo really enjoyed the class and added a lot of thought to the class. At the end of the class we got to talk to him and his wife a little bit more. He told us that his wife usually feed the missionaries from time to time. He told us she cooks really good Venezuelan food. We are really excited. We looked at our dinner calendar and they had signed up for next Monday! We will get to teach him in his home and eat really good food!

We got a new ward mission leader a couple of weeks ago, Brother Tezen from Guatemala! He is awesome! He is very organized and has a lot of good ideas to help the ward council. Last week we got to take him over to teach Br~. Br~ loves to talk and had a lot to share about his studies. It seems he gets tied up with the logic and analyzing it. We read about being focused on prayer and listening to the spirit through the Holy Ghost. We shared with him a few scripture out of Alma 32 and explained that the word must be planted in out heart and we have to nourish it first if we are to know if it is good and of God. Brother Tezen invited him to church and we bore testimony that it would help him get his answer. By the end he told us he would come one of these Sundays. It will be a big step for him.

This coming weekend Duncan is having a city wide yard sale for 3 straight days. It's suppose to be crazy! It will be good for proselyting and getting to talk with people on the streets!

Oh and I finished the Book of Mormon today! I'm excited to start again!

Elder Sheffield is my favorite! He is hilarious! It was funny the 12 o'clock tornado siren went off and Elder Sheffield freaked out. We all went with it and told him we had to get to a cellar. Haha we had him going a couple of minutes.

Every week is an adventure in the mission field! I love you all! Thank you for your letters and love!

Sincerely, Elder Watkins



 Storm Shelter


 Canon AE-1

Henderson Building

Duncan Donuts

Elder Quinney

Elder Street

Elder Mierau

Into the Cellar

Monday, July 6, 2015

Independence Day (Week 94)

This week was awesome! We were able to teach a lot of our investigators, despite the crazy holiday.

On Sunday we had a visitor/new move-in at church. They are from Venezuela, but moved here from Texas. The wife is a member but the Husband is not. We taught the Restoration in Gospel Principles class which worked out perfect. He really enjoyed church and they will be coming back. We are going to help them move in as soon as they have everything settled with their new house. We are really excited to teach him!

On Sunday night we had some of our plans fall through, so we decided to try out our investigator family the Busby's. We pulled up and they were on their porch. B~ is recovering from back surgery and is doing really well. We got invited inside and got to talk about their scripture reading (the struggle for a lot of our investigators). Well while we were there, T~ came over! It was awesome! We have been unable to start teaching him because of his schedule, and him living so far away from town. We got to teach him at the perfect time when he needed our message the most. We taught him about the Book of Mormon and he asked us if he could read a copy. He had a lot of cool questions. We taught him about the holy ghost and prayer and how we can receive answers from God. We are going to teach him again in a week or so. We also might be helping him build his house! I'm excited!

We had fun in Marlow with some members for the 4th of July. We had lunch at Sister Dupont's house (recent convert). A couple of the other elder's investigators were there as well. It was pretty cool, I got to talk to Sister Dupont's father (who is in his 90s). He was an amazing musician in his early years, and he has worked with a lot of famous musicians (Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, and John Carol). He still plays guitar and showed me some of his tricks. SO COOL! For dinner we ate at the bishop's with some of the members, and watched the Marlow fireworks from their house in the country. I love the members of this ward, they are amazing.

I hope you are all having a wonderful summer! I love you, God bless!

Sincerely, Elder Watkins

Winndel teaching us some tricks

Hiking Elk Mountain again

more hiking :)

Planner cover for Elder Sheffield