Tuesday, October 26, 2010

October 25, 2010

We had a wonderful Multi-Zone Conference this past Thursday. President Holzapfel emphasized "killing the self". He said we needed to focus more on teaching principles based on what we learn about each individual person. He told us about a South African golfer who won a huge tournament and after was told by a reporter that he was very lucky that day. The golfer responded, "The more I practice, the luckier I get".He told us that being busy isn't the same as being effective. He used an ER doctor as an example. If three people from a bad car wreck come into an ER, one of them is going to die, the other may die but can be saved, and the other is hurt but can be saved later, the doctor has to discern which of the patients he is going to save at the moment. Otherwise two people will die instead of one. He compared it to us and the people we are teaching. He said we don't have enough time to spend on people that are dead or people that can be saved later because they aren't ready to be saved now. He was very straight forward that we can't waste the Lords time anymore!Our mission doctor also gave a very good talk. He talked about three groups of people that Elder Richard G. Scott divided the people of the church into.1. They have a testimony and are converted2. Have a testimony but are not converted3. No testimony and not converted.He said that a very large group of returned missionaries are in group number two. They come home, have callings, are sealed in the temple, and so on. But, they don't magnify their callings, they are poor home teachers, and usually struggle with Pornography.He told us that when he sent his sons on missions he was sending them out to suffer. The Lord suffered so much for us. It is time that we suffer for him. We cannot afford to come home from our missions in group #2! We suffer on our missions... Suffer for the Lord.President and Sister Holzapfel shared an experience they had with President Eyring on December 9, 2009, the day that he called them to serve in this mission. He told them that the Lord woke him up at 3:00 AM that morning and talked to him for two hours. This is what He told Elder Eyring. The Lord is interested in Salvation, not efficiency. The Lord wants missionaries to tract. Sister Holzapfel said she isn't sure why the Lord wants this mission to tract so much. It is the lease effective thing I know when it comes to finding people. But President Holzapfel told us how great our joy would be if we brought save it one soul unto Him. That one soul is us... He said that the idea of tracting was going to change in this mission. He told us it is a means of our salvation. He didn't promise us more baptisms or anything like that. The only thing I am certain of is that this past Thursday, at our multi-zone, I heard a revelation from God, through a Prophet, to me.Elder Gonzales of the presidency of the seventy came to our mission recently with Elder Hinkley. Elder Gonzales told President Holzapfel that the harvest hasn't even begun in Alabama yet. We need to be getting double if not triple the the goals we've set for baptisms in this mission. The most in the month I have seen in this mission since I have been out is 30-40. I know that this mission is on the verge of doing something great.President Holzapfel told us it isn't about the vision of the South. It's the vision of Christ.We also had a media referral that we met with yesterday. Long story short (I am running out of time) He moved to the area, was baptized four years ago in Colorado but became inactive a few months later. He knew where he needed to be, got a hold of Salt Lake, had a good chat with him and he is coming back to church!!! WHAT AN AMAZING BLESSING AND ANSWER TO MY AND MANY OHTERS PRAYERS! I love you all!
-Elder Oliekan

Monday, October 18, 2010

October, 18, 2010

This week has been slow as usual. But, we got a couple of good referrals. We should have a couple of people to start teaching before the end of the transfer.I had my interview with President Holzapfel. I shared some of the concerns happening in Jasper. He met with the Stake Presidency that night and they were here yesterday and are working to resolve some of the issues. He asked if I wanted to stay in Jasper. I told him I would rather be moved. He said he felt good about that so I am pretty sure I will be going to a different area next week.That is about all for the week. Love ya!
-Elder Oliekan

Thursday, October 14, 2010

October 12

Pretty much a slow week. I have my interview with President tomorrow so I will talk to him about some of the things the area needs.
We talked to a members grand-daughter who is visiting from Michigan. She came to a session of conference and thought it was interesting because of some of the topics like pornography. This woman is a Pagan, bi-sexual, supports abortion, and pornography. So naturally she didn't fully agree with everything spoken. But we talked about truth and how it never changes. Just because someone is taught their whole life that the sky is green doesn't change the fact that it is still blue. She agreed with that. We had a good conversation and she said she had always wanted to read the Book of Mormon because I think the rest of her immediate family are all members. She said she would read some passages I left for her.
That is about all for this week. Finally some clouds today and the air has cooled off a bit.

-Elder Oliekan

Monday, October 4, 2010

October 4, 2010

(Travis spent most of his e-mail time this week getting registered for school. When I asked him if he was going to send a regular e-mail, He said he forgot and this is what he wrote.)

Things are the same really as last week.
Very few people came to conference. I think the most we had was 20 and that was the morning session on Sunday. The rest were just us and one or two others.
We are thinking the branch needs its leaders to be better examples. That is what we're going to work on.