Dear friends and family,
Truly not much has happened this week besides the visits of members and a few less actives that we check on pretty regularly. The branch has been quite sick so only 25 people at church this week, BUT one of them was a potential investigator and the lesson in Isaiah this week was pretty tight. We lost all our darned investigators this week as well, time to go find more! We helped a little old blind lady in our ward named sister Porter with her VCR setup with her TV, so that was nice and quite a service to her apparently. Uhh so in this area of Oakdale the three biggest towns are Oberlin, Oakdale, and Turkey Creek (which includes a little place called Lake Cove hidden up in the trees in Turkey Creek. Our area is actually huge and is the 2nd biggest in size in the whole mission. It is spread out and real country kinda like good old Hyrum so it's so pretty and fun to look at when we have to drive like 50 miles to get to one little member out in the boonies ha.
Courthouse in Oberlin Louisiana
Oakdale Louisiana Postcard Picture
Turkey Creek RV and Recreation Park
We have this senior couple the Hastings who are pretty great because Sister Hastings plays piano in sacrament and Elder Hastings is just a super nice guy full of love and the work, they thankfully invite us over every Sunday for a nice dinner and they are from AZ so it's western food that is mild and won't upset the balance of my system. They unfortunately had their truck break down and now have to use a rental car, but hopefully that will get fixed soon so that's what happened with them.
Every time we go to rehearsal for Mrs. Bradley's I seem to understand a little better what she wants to happen and even though we have few people, I think, it will be one of the funnest pageants I have seen, or been in, of course. When we finish Brother Bradley always wants to talk about the gospel and what we do as missionaries so I think our example on the religious community and our efforts, knowledge and patience are paying off after all. She would make a perfect relief society president ;-).
I really wish I could make this letter longer and stuff but just not much going on and I don't want to bore you all with endless information that isn't that exciting. I also have a hard time remembering everything because it all just kinda happens in one big endless day of work, it's crazy fun I know that much, and it's a challenge that I enjoy meeting.
I and Elder Hepworth have been listening to a lot of talks and devotionals recently (I think because he is leaving in like 20 days and is prepping to go back into life and school and dating etc.) but one talk that really stood out to me what the "inconvenient Messiah" by Elder Holland, it's probably what I learned the most from this week. IT literally filled me with this unimaginable hope and realization that, no this work is not easy or fun, because the atonement wasn't fun or easy. My life isn't easy or simple because Christ's wasn't, and that to obtain mercy I must know justice, and I must know hurt to know healing. I very much appreciate all that you all do for me and love you all so much. I am doing well, so don't worry about me. Really don't worry at all, I know the way Satan works and I know my weaknesses he prods at daily and he just can't bring me down because the Savior is ultimate and he is my friend. I must live because he died and must work as he worked to walk until I reach where he walked.
Not much inspiration or details this week, but remember one thing, I love you all, no matter what, all the time. :) It is a real love, for it burns within me, it is the fire in my soul that hits when I testify of Christ, when I know that if I try I can be like He is now and when He was in mortality. IT is not easy to be mortal and weak, but it is easy to be kind, I find it so pleasant to give you all kindnesses and as your minds and faces come to my mind as I pray, I feel a great and eternal charity towards you. My brothers and sisters, you are precious, I am but one man, but I know one thing that many men don't know. I know who Jesus Christ was, who He is, and How to be like Him. The Beloved Prophet Joseph sealed his blood to bring us the truth of the great Jehovah, now let us rejoice because we are saved by grace, after all we can do. Faith, Hope, Charity....a sure foundation that cannot be shaken or washed away.
Love, Elder Joshua Dean Rush