Thursday, January 22, 2015

January 19, 2014

Hey guys! The Aussie open starts today! That's what's up! Oh man... this is probably the last slam I will miss for the rest of my life... haha I'll be able to see the French live. I can't believe it's that close.. man.. Well, it sounds like you guys are having a blast right now... As I am writing this, you are probably on the mountain! That's awesome! When I get home, I am going to follow Nephi's example and go up to the mountain often... Now every time you go up to the mountains you are going to think of Nephi, right? Or is that just me? haha 

We taught gospel principles yesterday and brother (coach) N was in our class. He is so cool. He is the most humble guy. It was awesome to have him in class; he knows what's up. There seems to be a lot of cool people in our new ward. I'm looking forward to meeting more of them. I have been here for four days but not really. I've been out of the area a lot....  

Elder B is cool. He is doing great work here. He is fun to work with and I think we will have a great transfer. He has been out for about three months so far... it's weird. He has been out for about as long as I have left... almost. ugh... Everyone asks me how long I have been out as they are getting to know me... and I have to say twenty months... then, they all tell me things like "Oh, you are on your way home" or " you will probably die here" (finish my mission here) haha It's so weird... I feel like four months should be considered a good amount of time but you know, no one really thinks it is... haha Even Jenna apparently... who is already getting excited for it. ha 

So Monday and Tuesday last week were good. My last two days in FS. Our preparation day. We were going to tour Camden yards, the O's stadium, but it rained really hard. So we bought grapefruit and ate them. Not as fun but I think they may be going today.. not sure. haha So those two days, we mostly went around and I said bye to people and set up return appointments for the people to get to know the new guy. It was cool. We stopped by brother K's house and they were home! haha So we go in and chat for a bit. Anyway, as we were setting the return appointment, his daughter was like "yeah, come over Saturday and we will feed you pizza!" haha And brother K hopped on board so they had at least one sweet appointment Saturday. We saw brother K at the single adult fhe. If all went well then he was ordained yesterday and could be sustained at stake conference, which I will be at because we are in the same stake! So that will be fun! 

So I got here Wednesday, got all set up and then we went and visited some people. We had dinner with the F family. He is like the head chef for the naval academy. So we feasted! It was amazing! Elders get fed really well here. It's awesome! We have a dinner everyday this week! That hasn't happened to me in forever! haha And we are a full car area! We are the only set of missionaries in the ward. It is a nice set up. I like it. Turns out the F family are also the parents of a less active guy in FS.

Thursday, we attended a funeral.... that took up a lot of time. We were involved in set up and a member picked us up, so we were waiting for a ride from him and we stayed for lunch... That took up a lot of time. That night we taught a potential family about the book of mormon. They were investigators but they weren't super interested... we had a really good book of mormon lesson with them though. The spirit was definitely there, they just think they are too busy... but they do like it. And we brought a member who lived in the area and they knew each other. So that was really good. 

Friday, we had a leadership meeting in Frederick. I left with the zone leaders at seven in the morning and we got back around five thirty that night... craziness. haha It was a really good meeting though. I have a much better idea of what I am supposed to do/going to do. Effective meeting. haha And then I came back. We taught the G family. They are friends of some progressing investigators here, the soon to be G family. The G's are waiting to be married, then they will be baptized. Just waiting for family to be at the wedding... Anyway, we taught their friends. We had a great lesson but they are not really interested in joining any church. They just like hearing about it... so that was a little disappointing but that's ok.. The G will continue to see them. We also got invited to dinner by this guy named Mark. He is not a member. But he called us up and said elders, I want to feed you. Come over for dinner, but don't worry about preparing anything to teach. We just want to feed you.. haha So we went over to assess the situation. Really nice family. Not interested in hearing our message right now but we asked them who they know who needs a message about Christ. The 18 yr old daughter was like "Could I have some time to think and pray about it and then give you a list?" We said that would be ok. haha They want to have us back and feed us again. We will see. 

So yeah, that's the week. This next week will be good too. I need to get my bike fixed so I can go on exchanges. 

So yeah, I've been out of the area a lot and I'm still kinda playing catch up. I'll have to tell you more about it next week, once I get to meet more people. 

Anyway, I hope you guys have a good week this week! I will talk to you next week! Also, elder M just emailed me back. Brother K was successfully ordained a priest in the Aaronic priesthood. That's what's up.

I love you guys, 
elder Hinkle

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

January 12, 2015

Hey guys! How's it going? We have had a really good week this week. It's pouring rain today, but that's alright, we will be inside for a while at least. haha That's crazy that Fed hit 1000 wins. That is so many wins. Wilson is going to go nuts with that. I'm so glad it looks like he will still be playing when I get home. Good news. 

We got a bunch of snow Tuesday morning. The day before was freezing but green. We went to sleep and we were awakened by a text from the mission office saying that all cars were grounded for the day. haha It wasn't even 6:30am yet and they were already grounding the cars. We looked out the window and everything was dusted with snow. There was a good amount for Maryland. We could still see the tips of the grass at that point though. haha More came later. It snowed pretty much all day. We went around for hours just shoveling driveways and stuff. We went out to a members house and asked to shovel theirs. Then, we asked if we could just take their shovels around the neighborhood. We shoveled so many driveways! haha It was cool. The member we borrowed shovels from is friends with one of her neighbors on Facebook. I guess they posted how grateful they were for whoever cleared their driveway. Something was happening, so it was a big help. We had an appointment to teach this guy named J about the book of mormon. So we walked there with our shovels. Whenever we would see someone shoveling, we would run up and help them finish. It would seriously take us like two minutes. A guy would be starting to shovel and then we would run up - all three of us, because one of the traveling assistants was with us - and we would finish it off so fast. haha It was fun. We made it to J's house. He is one of those people who never asks for help so we had hoped we would be able to shovel his driveway too, but he beat us too it... but that's ok. We went in and had a really good lesson about the book of mormon. 

By the way, I am getting transferred. So that will be fun. Plus, I hear that they have an awesome youth program there. So things look good. I will have to let you know more about it next week. 

I learned a great lesson this week. God is in control of the situation. He knows his sheep and he is in charge of his fold.  But the lesson is - don't murmur! Murmuring is bad.... and it's very easy to do.... it's awful...  but I must clarify... we were not as Laman and Lemuel...We didn't just purely murmur... when Lehi's family hit challenges they murmured. Nephi, on the other hand, was a man of action. He used his agency to act and affect his surroundings. And through him a miracle was wrought that saved the day. I think we were a mix of Laman and Nephi last week... We kind of murmured a lot... But we were set on taking action. We took a lot of action... and it payed off.  In every situation when adverse events occur, the correct action is to do all you can and trust the Lord to help you. The correct thing to do is, never to murmur, ever... haha So yeah.... easy to say, harder to do. There is also a fine line between murmuring and discussing. I think the line is drawn when we stop talking about action. When we just sit back and criticize and complain... that's a waste of time... 

I am excited for this next transfer. It's going to be weird to be a district leader. I'm not sure how I feel about that. But it should be cool. Naturally, I'm one to just keep to myself more... but I won't really be able to do that.... it will be fun though. I am always happy to accept the Lord's call to serve. 

Did you guys read the first presidency message for the month of January? Please say yes.... it was fantastic. President Monson's message has made me think a lot this week. If any of you in the family have not read it, I invite you to read it.  President Monson is a modern day Nephi. Obedience has always been a hallmark of the prophets. It is the first law of heaven. When God tells us to do something we must obey. And we must do so cheerfully. It is the only way to make the best of things. The doctrine of obedience combined with our desire to be truly happy demands that when the Lord asks us to do something, we say yes quickly and completely.  President Uchtdorf taught us that if a plane charts a course that is off by one degree it will end up hundreds of miles away from it's intended destination. Every time the Lord invites us to do something, be it a call from a prophet of God to serve a full time mission, or an invitation from the bishop to perform an undesirable calling, or a text from the mission president telling us to do something - we are forced to adjust our course. Either we accept the invitation and continue flying the straight and narrow path, or we reject the invitation and we alter our course by one degree... if we do so we will not end up where we had intended to be or where the Lord invited us to be... as you read president Monson's address you will see what I am saying....  This is something that I am convinced is true. 

Anyway... I've gotta run. I hope you guys have a great week this week! It was fun to talk to you. 

I love you guys!