Friday, May 30, 2014

May 27, 2014

Well, what can I say for the week... it was a different week. We tried to see the people we have found and are teaching, we are just short of a teaching pool. We used a lot of the time this week to pump members up about an Apostle, namely Elder Holland, coming in two weeks. They have a hard time seeing its importance! Why!? So with that we talked about temples and member missionary work. So many people thinking kay.. we are getting a Stake, soon a temple.. not realizing they need 300 more people in each ward! Long ways to go for the temple. Really opened some eyes.  Some are excited, but others are still hesitant on jumping aboard the missionary life train! We started to make family missionary plans in each of the 11 households we visited and we are role playing and teaching more about approaching people with the gospel in Relief Society class and yw/ym this next Sunday! We got some sweet things going on. Yes, it’s still not easy but tings gwan mi boss! Really excited to be a part of this branch, kick starting in their work and so cool that the Peart family (our branch mission leader family) is leading it all! 8 referrals from them this week. It can be done, all we have to do is take a leap of faith and Open Your Mouth! The baptisms have been slow and it frustrates me a bit, but only the Lord can judge our success as being put out at 100% or not. So many good things we can be doing. Also, in gospel principles this Sunday, we learned about repentance. One good friend commented on there really only being 2 types of sins as we discussed mosiah 5:2  1)sins of commission- the thou shalt not  2) sins of omission- thou Shall do. We usually focus a lot on thou shalt nots.. but in reality we sin in omission as well. If we did the thou shalts, we wouldn't have time to do the thou shalt nots! Pretty straight forward. 
But to get to some sweet details of the week, lets see what I can remember...
We had a sweet lesson with Shacha (Georgias daughter) on importance of the Book of Mormon. In studies Saturday morning, I had a sweet impression come to mind. We had left Alma 32 for her to read. We took a few of the key words in that chapter and flipped them to be compatible with our lesson plan. We changed 4 words: seed=book of mormon, tree= book of mormon (same seed grows same tree) nourish=read and fruit=blessings. There is an assignment for you -  replace those four words and let me know how you feel about that. We didn’t teach many lessons this week, but I feel the Lord is trusting us more. I have had the best studies and preparations for lessons I probably have had the whole mission. We were kinda in ignorance when we got here, but now for the Lord to open up doors we gotta pick up our game! Super stoked for this next week as we begin to work more united with the members cuz definitely nothing is going to happen tell we are tight like a dish with the members. Well, we are off to the zoo! Hopefully we will have some sweet pics for next week! Love you all so much! Bless up! 
Elder WIlkerson

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

May 19, 2014

Man, the week long... but it has been good I guess. I need to continue looking at the positives and not focus on the negatives. It’s hard, but it can be done. I feel like Elder Sandmaier is retraining me. My attitude has been sour and this week has been rough! I always talk about being optimistic, now it’s my time to act and stop flapping the jaws I guess. Monday we had a great lesson with Georgia on the small and simple things. A lot of members there to support her! Really good lesson and was excited for baptism on the 24th, supposed to be this Saturday. I can’t figure out why it hasn’t happened yet. It’s been over a month and she isn’t there. Cold feet or coincidence, I don’t know. We will be investigating the subject tonight. We didn’t have any investigators at church. A lot of them were going to funerals. Seems like there is always one going on and if you wanted that could be your excuse every week and it would be truthful!! But such is life and we must move forward. Sasha is Georgia’s daughter. She is probably are next progressing investigator. Won’t accept baptism, but takes notes during lessons and always reads and prays. I think our biggest struggle in our area is getting people out to church. Hopefully we can seek some inspiration on how to fix that soon!! 
Tuesday was pretty sweet. We had a lot of appointments fall through so we got to do a lot of "finding through faith" and talking to everyone! Really helps you build your courage and confidence, but not very effective!! We found some awesome potentials though. Hope to see them this week!! But on our way home we helped push a man’s car to the auto shop, probably like half a mile. We thought we would be home late, but his boys gave us a ride home on motor bikes. I don’t know if that’s against rules, but it was sweet. Plus we saw the guy this morning! The rest of the week kinda smoked out the same way, appointments fall through, no one being able to see us so wandering around trying to find something good to do!! Really trying to work with the members cuz once we have them converted to the work, everything is going to fall into place!!!  We had some other good lessons this week with working class people, but that’s the thing, they are working people. They seem to get home when we go in and leave when go out! Could definitely bless the church, but going to take a few times to get them!! 
Thursday we had zone conference. It was really powerful and 7 hours long, but we talked lots about our first few minutes with investigators or anyone for that matter and leaving imPRESSions with them. Letting the spirit press something into them as we bear testimony quickly on a truth. Lots of roleplaying and such, but hey, I think I’m starting to like roleplaying. Should have been doing it all the while but I didn’t really have the desire to. And that was the other main focus taught on DESIRE. Some was pulled from Dallin H. Oaks talk on desire in 2011. Really good and really true! I have soo much to ponder and think about, but this one part stuck out to me and wanted to share it with you...he says:" desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, choices determine our actions. The desires we act on determine our changing, our achieving, and our becoming. Pretty powerful.. really something to think about and let sink into your heart. Also just like in Moroni 7:48 pray for this desire.. that’s something I learned I need to do AGAIN. I tend to do things for a season and then I am weak in that spiritual aspect once more. The power comes as we are consistent and not superficial or temporarily doing these things. But zone conference was a great reward as always! I’m thankful for such dedicated, inspired leaders.
The rest of the week was kinda terrible, but you gotta have the bad to have the good! But being humbled from time to time is great as well.. so we can gain some more strengths as we lean  to the Almighty! But thank you all for your plethora of prayers and support this week and all the many weeks past! I do appreciate them and I do know additional strength comes from them! So big up yo selves! Love you all, mannas and respect.

Elder Wilkerson 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

May 12, 2014

Things goin easy with the new companion! He loves roleplays so that is easy. He is bold and ready to teach the lessons that they practiced in the MTC, but some of the minor stuff leading up to the lessons we need to work on. Kinda awkward! But we will get there! He likes to eat weird mixes of food, but things go easy over all. We don’t have much in common, but with the gospel, the 12weeks or two transfers will go pretty quick I think! I really enjoy training. We had a training meeting on Wednesday before we got our trainees and we were there forever. Then someone asked if we should get going and he just simply said, “this is really important” and that training is a more important responsibility over any other. He was like, “I bring missionaries in as assistants and zone leaders and district leaders to TRAIN my TRAINERS”. Whoa.. if you’re not brought into those positions, it really says something about you. I’m not gonna lie, I have lots of pride still.. wanting to be a zone leader and get to drive!! But if the Lord wants me to be a trainer, I will stay on the bike and try to not let him down as being a worthy one ready to train at anytime! Really cool to know that I have been able to train so many times. I feel really privileged and have learned so much, but I guess I still try to use positions to judge how well I am doing. It probably shouldn’t be that way and I don’t know how to overcome it, but I just want to know that I am giving my best. (alright I’m done venting :) 
This week was good though. Elder Sandmaier and I got back late Wednesday night, but we were able to pick up Sasha - one of Georgia’s daughters. Also picked up Jodi the next evening and another named Analice this Sunday! I feel like worthiness and trust that God sees really determines how much people he will dump into our area and hands! Things are going pretty well other than we are  still struggling to find Priesthood brethren, but soon come!! We got some solid lessons tonight and are really going to be buckling down hard with the members especially cuz everyone is getting pumped for this very special day of getting a Stake. We need to start acting and thinking like a Stake. It should be so great. So yes, it is confirmed that Elder Holland will be establishing the Stake and we get to meet with Elder Cornish this Thurday during Zone Conference! Should be sweet! That is all I got for this week! Love you all and hope all the mothers had a wonderful day. Bless up, we will talk next week :)

Elder WIlkerson
Sterling's new companion - Elder Sandmaier - He's from Canada and is 6'6"

Monday, May 5, 2014

May 5, 2014

Short on time today. Elder Carter is leaving and since we are in the city of many shops, we did much shopping today! But minor details aside let me try to pump out a descent email. 
The week has been slow but busy! Elder Harris had a trade off with me this week. We ate at a terrible steak house cuz we have all been craving a steak for over 14 months! Can’t wait for some home blessed food cooked by an amazing mommy!! :) Y'all be grateful for dat!! Anyways, had some great discussions with Elder Harris, interviewed Brandon for baptism and Elder Harris left me with a talk entitled: Of Regrets and Resolutions- Pres. Uchtdorf! Fantastic talk about living in the moment! Really lightened the mood of my week! 
Also had zone meeting on Wednesday - a lot on desires and what investigators need to feel. All I can say is it has been a very inspiring week and I’m very eager to put the pedal to the metal. We got some work to do and the devil aint lettin up! So press forward. 
We did get our transfer calls. Elder Carter is going to Spanish Town and I have the opportunity of learning from a trainee once more! Excited -  you will all get to meet him Sunday! We got 6 elders coming out this transfer -  2 from JA. So sweet! 
Brandon’s baptism was awesome! Lots of youth out to support and participate in the program! We now will have all youth at the sacrament table and he wants to serve a mission! Solid kid! 
Well, hope the pics suffice this week and you will be able to somewhat piece my week together! :)
Our preparation day is over! I look very forward to seeing you Sunday! LOVE YOU! Manners!
Elder Wilkerson
At Whitebones.

Brandon's baptism 

With Grandma Brown - Love her!