Monday, May 23, 2016

"Follow the Savior? Why couldn't it be follow the butterflies?" -Elder Weasley

Hola y'all!

An update on my quest to gain weight just in case someone hasn't lost interest: I was doing really good, I was eating double the amount of food my companion was on any given day. I got back to my regular weight from before I was sick. And then one day I had a little less calories. Like an average regular person amount of calories. And then the next morning I swear I lost like 6 pounds no kidding. It's like I'm shrinking all the time and all I can do to fight it is eating more meals than a Hobbit. It's so tiring. And I don't think it's possible to lose that much weight in 24 hours???????? I guess it was mostly water weight 🌊🌊

Sometimes the young women in the ward will give us treats or food they made. I don't know if they made food and they're just giving some, or if they're making it for us. We're not starving, but I don't know if they know that. Yesterday after sacrament they came up to us and gave us chocolate pretzels which was cool I guess but uhhhhhh sorry ladies my heart belongs to the Lord!😉😎

P-days here in Simpsonville are boring. There is nothing to do. Greenville is like 10 minutes away but what is there to do in Greenville? Nothing. They have a suspension bridge but if you've seen one bridge you've seen them all. I get emails from missionaries in other missions and they're doing all this cool stuff! The coolest thing you can do here is accidentally pull up to train tracks right when a train comes and just sit and wait and watch the 10 minute graffiti art exhibit. Supposedly South Carolina is loaded with history and fun facts about the Civil War. The only fun fact I can think of is if you climbed on top of any Bojangles in South Carolina, you would be able to see at least 5 more Bojangles in any direction. Guaranteed

But this week was great! We got a lot of bible referrals which is exciting because we can actually deliver them now. If yall don't know, the church is actually running out of bibles. We tried to order 6 bibles like 3 months ago (because we had that many referrals) and we didn't get them until last Friday. But bible referrals are awesome because you can knock on someone's door and say "Hi, we're missionaries and we saw that you ordered a copy of greatest selling book of all time" (the bible) "would you like to read the sequel?" (the book of mormon). Ok we haven't actually done that yet but I'm so sick of the way we usually contact referrals that I'm dying to change it up. Hopefully I will have tried that by next week.

But spiritually speaking I think the biggest thing I learned about is the different ways you can pray. In the Adjusting to Missionary Life booklet we have, one of the things it tells you to do to deal with stress is think "All I need to do right now is _____" and just focus on one thing at a time so you don't get overwhelmed. It's a great and fine suggestion, but this week I decided to apply it to prayer. I used to measure my "successful" prayers based on how long they were and how many different things I talked about. But this week I shortened my prayers a ton. I decided that every time I pray I need to have a purpose or focus, and that's what the prayer should be about. "All I need to pray about right now is ______" It's been really interesting to see the difference. I actually pray about something I want to know or need to do, sometimes my prayers are just to express gratitude after miracle happens. we're instructed to always keep a prayer in our heart so it makes sense to me not to just be repeating the same things all the time. I don't know if this is absolute truth about prayer but I'll loosen my tie and take off my nametag and say this is the gospel according to Brother Berry. I've made each of my prayers on different topics, essentially whatever is on my mind at the time. If you have to think of something to pray, then maybe you shouldn't be praying in that moment, or maybe you shouldn't be praying about that specific thing because you don't really mean it. If you did, it would have been what's right on your mind right then. But please don't just believe that this is true. It is making a difference for me but maybe for each of you, communication with your Father in Heaven is different.

Sometimes it's hard to maintain a desire to share the gospel with others. Especially when everyone around you is a stubborn baptist who has everything figured it out and the moment you mention Jesus they go off and preach at you literally until you tell them you have to go. But it's ok, I'm learning how to get along with them.

That's all for now! This week's challenge is pay for someone else's food at a restaurant! I really wish someone would do that for me, but this ain't no Utah mission 😉

Oh and hey shout out to my siblings Allie and Jared! Enjoi your birthdays 🎂🎂🎂


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