Monday, 22nd of July 2013
This week has been an eventful week for Sam!
He had dinner with the Roper family, for a change he shared something with them for the spiritual thought. They watched a video on youtube called 'Brad Wilcox - His grace is sufficient'. It is the best talk Sam has ever heard, he explains perfectly how Christ's grace works, how the atonement works, and our whole purpose of being here. Sam really wanted us to watch it as he said it will change your whole perspective of what repentance really is, and how much Heavenly Father loves us.
On Friday Elder Blanco went to a leadership training meeting, so Sam was on exchanges until 4pm, in a completely different area. It was a good day for him as he felt he has definitely grown in confidence. In each situation he found he would naturally take the lead, whether it was in the conversation, sharing a scripture or a lesson, Sam didn't think he would be able to do that, but he had been praying that he would be able to be more confident and it definitely worked for him!
They had an interesting discussion with a man who had all sorts of concerns, they talked about the atonement, fall, restoration, spirit world, 3 degrees of glory, baptism, parables and black people not having the priesthood until the 70's. The guy would ask a question, then as Sam would start to explain he would bring up something completely irrelevant, then as he would explain that then he would keep interrupting. Sam explained that the church had no official statement on the priesthood not being given to black people, however he told him he had discussed it before. He explained, and he agreed that the people at that time were still biased towards black people, he then explained that with the priesthood comes a lot of responsibility, however because of the way the people were at that time, they wouldn't be able to fulfill their responsibilities. He kept asking the same question and Sam must have explained it 10 times to him. Sam said he was friendly but pretty ignorant.
After exchanges Sam and Elder Blanco went to check on the Wagasky family, they are the people Sam had his first meal with in the field, they were preparing to move so they wanted to see if they needed any help. On the way to their house, they could see a thunderstorm which was weird as they could see the lightning, but couldn't hear the thunder. It started to rain and the sky was black, and it was nearly constant lightning. They were inside talking to the family and Sam started to feel sick, completely randomly out of nowhere, so he stood outside for a few minutes and vomited four times, then was fine afterwards! Their phone went off, as they received a CMAS alert for flash floods and severe hail, the rain started coming down really heavy and the lightning was insane. Luckily Brother Wagasky gave them a ride home, and they saw some INSANE lightning, you could see the bolts going straight across the sky, and a lot of fork lightning. It was almost constant lightning, the longest time he counted without seeing a lightning strike was 5 seconds. There were storms on Sunday as well, the wind was really strong, Sam sat out on the balcony and ate his cereal and watched the storm. They are going to have another storm today, Tuesday and Wednesday.
Last night they had another really cool experience, one of the members didn't show up to church so they went by to see how she was doing. While they were there the young men's president also came and told them that he had been praying specifically for us. Literally 10 seconds after they left, a guy shouted out to Elder Blanco 'are you guys Mormons?', he told him they were, and he told them he wants to join our church, and wanted to know how to do it. He is called Christopher Williams, and seems pretty genuine in wanting to meet with the missionaries and learn. He said he invited the missionaries back to his house 2.5 months ago, but they didn't show up, however Sam and Elder Blanco were both in the area 2.5 months ago and they have never met him until now!