Monday, April 21, 2014

"New House, Flap-Jack Challenge, Floyd's Transformation, Lake Placid Nutella & Crepes, & Bicycles & the Atonement."

Hello everyone!
Man, how is it even Monday again. That makes no sense to me. Bah. Anyway, this week kind of just happened and I'm not even really sure what to write about... There were a lot of random things that happened so let us talk about those.
Here we go.
1. 10 minutes ago... my companion and I decided to do what is known as the "flap-jack challenge" at a diner here in Potsdam. Basically you have to eat a giant pancake the size of 4 dinner plates in 45 minutes. Is it insane? Yes!  But if you complete the challenge you get a free t-shirt that says, "I ate it all!' So naturally, we needed that. Plus, the zone leaders here could only eat half of it, so we had to show them up! Well... we tried.... and I failed. I ate a little more than half of it. BUT Sister Davis ate all but a tiny bit. She would have done it, except she ran out of time! I guess I can count "eating ridiculous amounts of pancake" off my list of talents. 
2. We moved into our new house! Hurray! Unfortunately I forgot to take any pictures of it... but just know that it is fantastic! (pics to come next week!)
3. I went on exchange this week to Lake Placid again! Round 3 visiting that adorable mountainous town. This time I got to spend time with the adorable Sister Keller who has only been on her mission for 2 weeks! We had a really good time. PLUS She had her first experience OYMing (talking to people in the street), eating crepes, and eating nutella. I definitely enjoyed opening her eyes to all these wonderful things. ALSO, while in the Adirondack mountains I took a picture of me, sitting in an adirondack chair. dream = fulfilled.
4. EASTER. Easter was so fun we had 2 1/2 Easter dinners. All of which were delicious and filled us up to the brim! The members here are too good! :)
5. HIGHLIGHT OF MY WEEK. Floyd rolled into church looking so sharp!  This week he rolls into church in a full black suit, white shirt and tie. Not to mention he got a hair cut and was carrying an Easter basket full of goodies for Sister Davis and I. It was seriously the best transformation I have ever seen. Ah man, Floyd is the best.
The cool moments... 
(Not too many this week. Like I said earlier, I don't even know what happened with this week.....)
1. To finish my story... remember a few weeks ago when I told you the story about the young mom who we really felt like we needed to talk to? Then we saw her al Walmart and missed the opportunity again? WELL this week we had the food pantry again, and she was also there. So we knew we couldn't let her get away again. So when it was her turn to come through we offered to carry her food up so that way we could get a chance to talk to her. As if Satan knew our plan, right then her baby started screaming and she was like "sorry I have to feed him now. Will you just go put those in my car?" We were feeling pretty bummed about the whole issue, but decided to leave a note on her food. Well we finished helping out at the food pantry and just as we were going out to get into our car this girl jumped out of her car and was like "Hey! I got your note! I would love to have you over sometime!" SO we are going to go over sometime this week. So I guess the story really isn't over. Can you all take another to be continued? :)
2. We had a really good lesson with one investigator this week that really put me in the Easter mood. We were talking to her about the Atonement and repentance and all that good stuff. Anyway, the spirit was really strong and it was really hitting her hard. I then felt inspired to share a story with her, that I would now like to share with you all! This story comes from a talk given by Stephan E Robinson called "believing Christ"...
"After I had come home from school one day, I was sitting in a chair reading the newspaper. My daughter Sarah, who was seven years old, came in and said, “Dad, can I have a bike? I’m the only kid on the block who doesn’t have a bike.”
Well, I didn’t have enough money to buy her a bike, so I stalled her and said, “Sure, Sarah.”
She said, “How? When?”
I said, “You save all your pennies, and pretty soon you’ll have enough for a bike.” And she went away.
A couple of weeks later as I was sitting in the same chair, I was aware of Sarah doing something for her mother and getting paid. She went into the other room and I heard “clink, clink.” I asked, “Sarah, what are you doing?”
She came out and she had a little jar all cleaned up with a slit cut in the lid and a bunch of pennies in the bottom. She looked at me and said, “You promised me that if I saved all my pennies, pretty soon I’d have enough for a bike. And, Daddy, I’ve saved every single one of them.”
She’s my daughter, and I love her. My heart melted. She was doing everything in her power to follow my instructions. I hadn’t actually lied to her. If she saved all of her pennies she would eventually have enough for a bike, but by then she would want a car. But her needs weren’t being met. Because I love her, I said, “Let’s go downtown and look at bikes.”
We went to every store in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Finally we found it—the perfect bicycle, the one she knew in the premortal existence. She got up on that bike; she was thrilled. She then saw the price tag, reached down, and turned it over. When she saw how much it cost, her face fell and she started to cry. She said, “Oh Dad, I’ll never have enough for a bicycle.”
So I said, “Sarah, how much do you have?”
She answered, “Sixty-one cents.”
“I’ll tell you what. You give me everything you’ve got and a hug and a kiss, and the bike is yours.” Well, she’s never been stupid. She gave me a hug and a kiss. She gave me the sixty-one cents. Then I had to drive home very slowly because she wouldn’t get off the bike. She rode home on the sidewalk, and as I drove along slowly beside her it occurred to me that this was a parable for the Atonement of Christ.
We all want something desperately—it isn’t a bicycle. We want the celestial kingdom. We want to be with our Father in Heaven. And no matter how hard we try, we come up short. At some point we realize, “I can’t do this!” It is at that point that the sweetness of the gospel covenant comes to our taste as the Savior proposes, “I’ll tell you what. All right, you’re not perfect. How much do you have? What can you do? Where are you now? Give me all you’ve got, and I’ll pay the rest. Give me a hug and a kiss; enter into a personal relationship with me, and I will do what remains undone.”

As we shared that parable with our investigator a strong sweet spirit entered the room and I knew that the message was true. The purpose of Christ's atonement wasn't just to make up for our sins. Or even just our sicknesses or pains. The atonement is there to help us with our every day weaknesses and shortcomings. It's there to help when we want desperately to do our best, but still constantly come up short. That's the greatest blessing of this Easter season. Because of Jesus Christ, we can do it. I am truly grateful for my Savior and His love for me.

Let's finish up with some funny quotes...

"Ok lets play rock, paper, scissors to see who has to ask. ok shoot, now be honest, what did you get?" - Atext message recieved from the elders.

 "hey Sister Davis... do you want to go get some... with me... too?" -Elder

"What in the heck is a cheesecake" - Sister Langford forgetting what cheesecake is...
 "I think someone just had a bunch of words in their mouth that they wanted to use, swished them around in their mouth a bit and then spit them on the paper. Because seriously this makes zero sense." - Sister Davis reading Isaiah

Hey, have a good week friends! Pinky promise that next week I will have exciting stories to share! Love you all!

Sister Langford

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