Monday, September 8, 2014

More Anxiously Engaged 9/8/14

This week has been interesting. As people are starting to get ready for school/leaving to go to school there are some changes around here. We have done a lot of teaching, in fact we have been doing exactly
what Elder Cornish has taught us. Something I am trying to figure out though is that even when we have people fellow shipped really well with 3 or 4 different people, they have had spiritual confirmations, they understand the doctrine, their families are okay with them coming to church, and they are familiar with the church yet, they still don't come. This week has been the same. I gave it my all. I can honestly say that I did everything I could to get them there. We arranged rides. We confirmed 3 or 4 times the night before and even that morning. Then 30 minutes after sacrament meeting starts we get a text saying "I just can't make it....." It's frustrating but, there is something that I need to learn from all of this. I have become so much more grateful for the people who follow through with what they say, it inspires me to do better at being honest and do what I say I will do.

I still love the people here with all of my heart though. The branch is struggling, we have been doing our best to get as many people involved as we can even if it is just an assignment to say hello to everyone who walks through the door. Unfortunately people don't really want to do that, but slowly with persistence their hearts are changing. When I leave here I want to see this branch more unified, to become friends and supports to each other. It's a work in progress so I'll keep you posted. Please pray that the branch will become more anxiously engaged. We need to get people excited out here!!!

Elder Peters and I just said goodbye to Elder Grant who we have been training 2 weeks before he entered the MTC. HAHA funny guy but, he will do well. Transfers happened, nothing really changed besides my boy Elder Daniels is going home. Gosh I never thought that this would happen. All the Elders that I have come super close too over my mission are all going to be home is less than 72 hours. Man what is happening!!?!?!?!?! Elder Chris, Lacey, Egan, Daniels........depressing thought too bad I can't give them all hugs and tell them goodbye. I will just have to do that when I get home. Oh well. They were and are some of the great missionaries of this mission, I will miss them.

Everything else out here is fine and dandy. We are in a tri companionship for a while until Elder Beck can get his work permit. Yep this whole island is mine......wahahhahawhah. So much fun, seems kind of lonely sometimes but I have no time to think about that. Tell you what though this island has kind of a small town feel. It is quiet and calm all the time. If you want a relaxing vacation come here. Nothing more I can say than that this week.

Joshua I haven't heard from you in a while! How is school treating you? How is soccer treating you? I haven't heard much about that cool special team you made it on. I love you little man!

Mom thanks for the email I really appreciate it. I love hearing from everyone every week. I can't explain it, it brings a peace of mind that the family is still out there and caring.

Nikayle what are you up too? I haven't heard from you in a while. I hope that you are enjoying school! Love you

Siri thanks for talking with me last week. That was fun. I wish that I could growl with you once more but soon come. Are you enjoying school still?

Brixen guess what? NOTHIN!! Ha gotcha. I love you. how is kindergarten?

Carter have you gone on any more dates? I hear you have quite the amount of home work. Your a stud keep up the good work kiddo.

Dad thanks for talking with me. It's nice knowing that there is someone who understands what I am going through and has some what of an insight. Thanks for the time you take to shoot an email to me. Love you.

Love you all, have a good week.

Elder Henderson

Opposition in All Things 9-1-14

Well this was a very interesting week for us in our area. Everything that we spoke about in zone conference we applied into our area (debriefing the members in private so they can succeed in public) and in result we had some of the best lessons that I have had out here in Bahamas. But, just like everything that is good it is opposed by the devil. So towards the end of the week, that is exactly what happened. The last two weeks Elder Peters and I have done our absolute best to try and keep a balanced escalator effect going on. Then on Friday, everything seemed to come crashing down. All the people who we have been teaching who are very excited about the gospel just seemed to have one thing or another happen. Sickness, death in the family, something, anything to prevent us from teaching them or from them helping us to teach someone else, including less actives. So, we street contacted for 3 days but the funny thing was, everyone we ran into just didn't want anything to do with the church. We were kind and respectful and loving but we had attack after attack on our personal beliefs. As we were faced with this opposition we stood firm and bore powerful testimony of our Lord and Savior, how he cares and how he established his church one more on the earth. I certainly learned a lot on what the devil is seeing in our area how it continues to progress and he doesn't like it. My conviction about this gospel deepened and is deeper than ever before. Even my love for the people grew, strange service is defiantly the key. But, I am expecting this week to be a lot better, we are diligent, obedient and we have our Lord and Savior on our side, the Devil can't stand against that he can only delay our work. The work will continue.

There isn't much more that I can say than that. That described my week to the fullest. I do think it is funny that people try and try to put up and argument against us but there is none because the is the only true church. And nothing can stand or defeat the truth. Well I have gotten some questions about investigators so here you all go.

Bernard-26 husband with a wife and 2 kids and 1 on the way. When we met him he didn't have a job and they didn't know where the next meal was going to come from. 5 days latter after we promised him if he would live the commandments he would find work (we told him to be careful because when he got it he would be tested on the Sabbaths....) Which happened. He is so excited about the gospel and is fellow shipped by the members very very well. Pray that his family will want to have what he has and is receiving.

Won Yea-17 years old. I beat him in a one v one game. Great kid and very well fellow shipped with the branch. He will be baptized a week before Bernard and we told him he can baptize his friend that he gave to us as a referral. Pray that he will be able to forgive Bernard for wronging him.

Shay-very spiritually in tune person. Super actually. I shard a couple of experiences with her that I don't usually tell anyone. Goes to show that the Spirit prompts us to do different things some times. Nervous about baptism but progressing. Pray that she will get her answer about Joseph Smith.

Kirk- Doesn't believe that God exists. Kind of more like, he doesn't think he needs to pray more than once about anything. He doesn't understand that God is his father and that pray is a way for our wills to come in line with the Father's will. He says he doesn't feel a thing but I can tell that he is lying. He just isn't recognizing the
Spirit. He really loves it when we come by though. That is one of the reasons I know he is feeling it besides us being there and watching the spirit prompt him to pray, or helping him to understand. I know so much more about the Spirit than I used too. Pray that he will really come to terms with his feelings and recognize the Holy Ghost.

Stan- 40 year old with a daughter. Similar story to Bernard, except he is failing at putting the Lord first. The Lord giveth and taketh away. I hope we can talk to him at least soon, his job takes all of his time. Pray that we will have a chance to meet with him.

Pepe-Soon be baptized a Haitian. Loves the gospel. Similar to Bernards experience except he understand the Sabbath. He got Sundays off this last week so that was a bonus. Pray that he will make his baptism date.

Well that is it this week. I love you all. I know that the Devil will sometimes stand against you but he will not nor he cannot prevail when you are doing what's right. He can only delay the inevitable. Keep pressing onward. Keep going on and he will crumble before you, he always does.

Elder Henderson

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Hastening the Work in Freeport... 8-25-14

Hmmmmmm......What do I write this week. How can I tell all of you about the amazing work that is going on out here without taking two days to write it??.........Let's just start out by saying that the Lord's work is seriously hastening, especially out here in Freeport.

I will just start with Friday. On Friday, we flew to Nassau for zone conference with Elder Cornish. WOW! I watched this general authority get up and speak for over 5 hours without notes or anything! He spoke
about how we can excite branches and investigators. He was defiantly lead by the spirit because it answered every single question I wasbringing to the table and more. He spoke how we should not just teach
for people to learn, but for those you teach to turn around and teach their family and friends. For example, we met this man by the name of Bernard. Bernard is 26 years old, has 2 small kids with one on the way. He is out of work and his children do not know where their next meal is coming from. We found him, by the way, through a referral from an investigator (ask for referrals from everyone it helps.). Our first lesson we sat down and taught him about the plan of Salvation. Talk about spiritually powerful! He couldn't get enough of it. When we left we left him with the track Plan of Salvation to read along with praying to know if it was true, reading Matt. chapter 7. 2 hours later we received a text from him. (Which is amazing that he even sent us a text because he has literately zero money.) "I just read the booklet twice and the chapter in the bible. I then sat and prayed for some time about it. I know it's true. I just know it is." Now normally we would be pumped and go on to the restoration but what Elder Cornish taught us to do was this: we went back yesterday for our second lesson. We sat and talked to him again about the Plan of Salvation! Except we picked out 3 points in it, before hand of course, and explained to him that his wife and children didn't know about these things. We told him that we would like to have a family home evening with all of them and we wanted him to help us teach the Plan of Salvation. He was very nervous about it so we role played it with him. After we finished the role play he could hardly sit still. We asked him how he was feeling about it now and his response was as follows "I am going to share it with my wife right now!!!!!! Wow! I just want to be in the Celestial kingdom with my family. That is all I want." It was another Spiritual lesson but more importantly he felt the fire of the gospel! He wants to share it as we all must share the gospel! I can't wait for Friday. That is what Elder Cornish taught us. 1. It helps the person who will be teaching feel that this is the truth. 2. It blesses the lives of those they share it with. 3. People pay more attention to a friend that us. 4. When people pay attention more the Spirit is stronger. 5. It starts a culture of home teaching. 6. People feel like they are needed by God with in turn helps the to 'endure to the end'!!!!!!!! When I finally understood what Elder Cornish was talking about I could hardly sit still in my seat. It was exactly what this branch needs. As Elder Peters and I have applied this over 2 days, that is it 2 days. We have seen investigators testimony deepen, and a fire all of the sudden burst into their eyes that wasn't there before. I can't believe it took me so long to understand this! Man, I
feel really dumb! One year gone and it took me this long to get it........Garbage. I feel like I understand exactly what a missionary is supposed to do. (There is certainly a difference between knowing and understanding). Now with my all that I give every single day plus the understanding of what exactly I need to do, what the person needs to understand that I am teaching, what that same person needs to feel. Oh boy I don't have enough time left to see all of the consequences. Put your shoulder to the wheel.

Other than that, Elder Peters and I are working our tails off while have more fun than anyone else on this planet. Don't believe me? Come spend a week with us and you will see. You will sleep like a log at night, wake up exhausted, and have the most fun that you have ever had in your entire life. :) Life of an obedient missionary. We have found some seriously prepared people. From last week we went from 2 people with a date to 5 with a date 2 progressing and 3 others who should receive a date here in the next 3 days. This once thought of 'dead area' is now alive and thriving. We will baptise weekly, no questions asked. It will happen for this is the work of the Lord and no unhallowed hand can stay the work, especially not when you have 4 solid missionaries like the ones out here in Freeport who give the Lord all they have every single second. I don't know if you can tell but I am super pumped for this next week.

Okay, now Saturday. President Brown was with us Saturday and actually came teaching with us. Haha, I have the best mission President in the world. Which other President do you know that will come to your house,
sleep on the couch, steal your food, work out with you in the mornings, and then teach the most spiritual lesson you have ever been in in your entire life? Yeah mine. But we got to teach two lessons which were really cool. We got some things that will help improve our teaching and took him back to Momma Brown at the hotel (last time he stayed with us). Sunday President basically single handedly, put a fire under every single member. Oh boy that was exactly what this branch needed as well. Then we did the tithing audit followed by interviews for the 3 elders who haven't gotten them yet. Afterward President was out side on the Elders bikes trying to pop a wheelie........As he came walking to the car (so we could take him to set a missionary apart) he had a little kid look on his face. I have a very unique mission President I will just say it that way. This morning we got up to drop him off at the air port all the while President telling us "this is my favorite island in the mission. I could live here...." Yep, I have now served in Presidents 2 favorite areas in the mission. There is your fun fact for the day. Transfers is here in 2 weeks. I can't believe I have spent almost a month out here, time certainly goes way to quickly.

Last thing, I have been doing some thinking about my conversion to the gospel. As I pondered on what it was that made me really believe that this gospel is true I came to the conclusion that I always knew. Meaning that, there were times that I only believed that it was even hoping it was. Then after some time, I mean 18 years I just kind of
grew into the knowledge. For any of you that are struggling to know. Keeping doing the simple things: Pray! Read! Go to church and take the sacrament! I promise you that you will eventually come to the knowledge that I came too. This is God's gospel. The mission that I am on has in small part helped me taste what 'God's work and his glory...' is. There is no sweeter experience than watching someone come and try the fruit of life for the first time in their life. Challenges will and do rise but I promise they will end. Keep the perspective of eternity and they will become easier to bear. I love what God says in the scriptures, he always is saying 'prove me'. So you want to know for yourself if this is true? Prove God. Prove him. Choose a commandment and study upon it then do it and see if the blessings come that God promises. I love each of you but more importantly God, our Heavenly Father, is always mindful of you and loves you more than you can possibly imagine. This is the only true church on the face of the planet. We as missionaries (full time) are the only people on the earth that can save a soul. No one from the other church's can do that. We must help our brothers and sisters. They are waiting to know of the truth and are "only kept from it because they know not where to find it." Show them the way. Again I love you. Thanks everyone for your support - Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt Carolyn, Swinsons, Allens, Family, etc. Enjoy the week.

Elder Henderson

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

A Neighbourhood of Millionaires 8-11-14

Well what do I say about a week in paradise? Probably that is isn't what you all think it is! Oh boy! We were out street contacting a couple of days ago and we found this neighborhood of millionaires. I am not sure which was more nerve racking, at first, testifying to some of the riches, high standing people that I have perhaps talked to, or to walk down some of the most dangerous streets in the world. I tell you what though some of the most powerful moments of my mission will be when I bear testimony to someone of a high position, rich (in a  worldly aspect), and popular. I can recall several times over the last week where I have found myself of a multi-million dollar estate, actually on the porch, knocking on the door. What happens next is exhilarating and amazing. As we stand there patiently waiting, our heart somewhat quaking because some of these yards of dogs that tend to want to kill us, the Spirit seems to come over. The heart beats soften, the courage strengthens, time slows down and peace reigns. As the door will open our mouths are filled with the most amazing and wonderful news that we could ever bear, the gospel of Jesus Christ. Many times we have stood and born such strong testimony to these
people that the very earth seems to shake beneath us. Yet despite this Spirit outpouring, many of these people just turn us down and tell us to get off the premises. I have to laugh because we have been chased after by a couple of dogs. A couple of days ago, there was a gate open, and when we approacedh a pack of 7 hungry wolf-dogs came after us. We both took off tearing down the street. When I started to pull away from my comp, he stopped and grabbed a mango seed to throw at them.....hahaha. Luckily, that was what stopped the dogs from coming after us. God works in mysterious ways. 
   But, there was one guy that we met that invited us in.....I had no idea how stinking nice his house was! They have their own private canal! After talking with the man about when we could return (we got to sit in the A/C while we did thank goodness!!!!!) He invited us to take a spin on his 2 jet skis.....I was disappointed but we politely said no. He then offered to take us scuba diving......again, disappointingly I said no. Then he asked if we would feel more comfortable if his son took We explained what who we really were, and about the rules. Then I chimed in, "...but I will take you up on each offer in about a year or two with my family." The man smiled and said, when you come back bring your family. You can stay here the whole time you are in Freeport, and you may use everything I have. Cool experiences of knocking doors for you. 
   I have gotten questions about my comp so here it is: Elder Peters is an amazing missionary as well, boy if only I could learn to be as open with my feelings as he is. There are so many characteristics that I can see in him that I want, I will work hard and who knows maybe a little bit of greatness will rub off from Elder Peters to me. From day one we have gotten along very well! We have a lot more in common than I thought; especially about the part of wanting to consistently improve ourselves. Elder Peters and I have had some very powerful lessons! Just about every time we sit down to teach you can just feel the spirit starting to flood the room. I love Elder Peters. I have spent a great deal of wondering about a couple of things though. We have been very diligent on finding people to teach, in fact we have, in the last 8 days, filled up 2 (front and back) potential investigator forms. (In our planners we only have 2 pages left for those we contact). What can I say....we do work out here! 

I love you all, I hope you know that. Christ lives and so shall we.

Until next week.

Elder Henderson

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First Week in Freeport!! 8-3-14

Wow. What can I say more than that? Things here are extremely different! The culture here reminds me a lot of back home but I think that I have gotten so used to things there in Jamaica that it has become almost forgien to me. I really like it though. haha I stepped off the plane with Elder Fitkau in Nassau and I was so intregued with the carpet. It has been a long while since I have seen that. I always will be walking with Elder Peters, street contacting or going to a lesson, and I see things like lawn mowers or no pot holes on the roads and I think it is the coolest thing ever! Everything is just so different. There differences between the two countries is incredible. I would have never guessed that I would ever be able to be facinated the most simple things of life back there in America. You all are truly blessed. You have no idea what you have! I didn't either until I came out and saw the poor of the poor in Jamaica, that was a humbling experience. Be grateful for what you have. Don't let a single moment go by without being grateful! In all reality we should never be not grateful because the situation every single one of you are in is just far beyond the people of Jamaica. 
   So far everything is going really well. I am adjusting, I  think, very well. I have been very impressed with our branch President, he has so much fire, so much enthusiasm, and so many things he wants accomplished before he leaves in two years. By the way, Presiden Konacoa was wondering if you could come visit. I guess it has been a while and it would really boost the branch. We really have a direction to go. I am excited I think that as we bring back, and get started key members that things will start hastening. The area here has been well taken care of and I have been very impressed with the up-to-date area book. Elder Peters has things pretty down and I am pumped to be with him. We are getting along really well, and we both want to work hard.
This will be a hard working fun time here.
   To give you what it is like to be one this wonderful peaceful island imagine the quiet time in the morning before anyone gets t of bed right before the sun comes out. That is how it is all the time here. There are about 20,000 peolple here so not even as many people as a large university. The views remind me a lot of Virginia. There are the same trees every where! There are no mountains and I guess we are slightly below sea level is what I am told. The culture is like Americans except they are a little bit behind, it is like being Americas shadow. The money they use is intermingled with the USD because the BD is the same worth as the USD. I love it here! The branch is super small even smaller than Downtown but, I love it! 
   The pic I sent is of a guy that is best friends with Bolt! He will be running in the next Olympics I convinced him that when he wins a medal or even if he doesn't to give me a shout out..."Elder Henderson my brother this is for you!" But he is a chill guy and seems to be fairly prepared. We will be teaching Ryan Thursday, keep him in your prayers. I had a humbling experience. I met a recent convert named Julian. He is 18 and a football (american football) star. He is going into his senior year of high school but he wants to go to the US to try and play college ball. I guess his family life is the most worse thing you could imagine, it reminds me of some of the Downtown members. But, as he has gotten a taste of the restored gospel he has taken off. He is clinging with all he has to the gospel! It reminds me that we too must be as this high school senior. We must do everything possible to do what is right or it will not be enough! 2 Nephi 32:3 "....feast upon the words of Christ...." Feasting is eating until your belly bulges, you have unloosened your belt, and you have packed as much in as possible! I implore all who read this email to make that your goal every single day! We are in a time and era where the Devil is gaining power every single day. How strong people were spiritually 2-3 years will not be enough for our day and time today! We must all be aboard, we must all put our shoulder to the wheel. I testify that if we will do these things then we will be able to "be still and know that I am God." He will be our God. He will not be ashamed of us but will protect us. Of these things I know for I have seen them in other peoples lives, in my own life and the Spirit of the Lord has born testimony that these things are true. Look at your feelings now, you will know what I am saying to be true. The Spirit is present with you now. I love and care about you and all of my brothers and sisters from all nations; so I shall raise my voice as Captain Moroni. I will not be silent for that is all it takes for the Devil to win. Open your mouth and share it with someone you know. Save a soul.

See you next week,

Elder Henderson

Transferred to Freeport! 7-26-14

   This was a good week. I have really enjoyed my time here in Downtown. It was strange though, last week after we dropped off Cesar Rosario and we were driving back I had the distinct impression that I had accomplished everything that I was called here to do. I started to look back over the goals and revelation that I had recieved when I first arrived and it was true, I had done everything. Those feelings were new to me. Even when I heard that my paperwork didn't go through on Monday, I had a reassuring feeling that I had still done everything asked of me in Downtown and it was my time to leave. I can show you the journal entry for last Sunday. Weird. This place, Downtown, has etched itself upon my heart. I truly do love the people here. I will always remember the sparkle in the members eyes when they finally got it, or the investigators. I will remember the hard times that we had in helping the members establish better relationships with their families and getting them to be more excited about missionary work. (We are still working on that but they have come a long ways. The youth are still the ones driving the work there. God works by the simple and humble.) I love this place! 
   On the flip side of things, I am extremely excited to be going to Freeport. I do not know the area, I hardly know my companion, but I know one thing and that is the Lord always provides a way. We will do great things out there, with the help of the Lord. I am also very excited to be able to teach all day again! YEAH! I love to teach, there is nothing really more rewarding than that. Elder Martin is also ready to take over the office. He has grown and learned alot. He has done a lot better than most would especially since he was thrown into the fire of things with the new cars coming in, etc. Elder Martin is a great missionary and he will do wonders here. I am a little sad because I won't see him until I go home but, it must be for the best because it is from the Lord so onward. 
   You told me as well to keep you updated on the basketball bunch. Well we had a chance to teach them again 3 days ago. It was another wonderful lesson. This time we had 4 of them show up, 3 of them are showing real interest. This last lesson at the end one of them asked us about Joseph Smith......oh boy I get all giddy when that question is asked. We were short on time so we gave them a brief overlook that he was a prophet of God and let them know that we would be speaking with them more about it here this coming week. All of them were excited and asked for another pamphlet. I have high expectations for them, they are being left in good hands though. I hope that something great comes out of this awesome experience.Well thanks again for all you do. I will see you......on Monday. Love you!

Well that basically sums it all up. I am off to Freeport, Bahamas. So sick!!! I am very excited. I fly out on Thursday July 31, 2014. It will be an amazing experience. Other than that this week has been quite the week. We have been looking forward too and hoping to be baptising JR today, and we are. At 6 p.m. tonight I will be dunking the 18 year old who is preparing to go on a mission. This will be the 4th baptism off of one referral ayouth gave us just over 7 months ago. The youth really drive this branch. If you think that you can't share the gospel think again. God is the one who decides if it is someone's turn to hear the gospel, share and let him do the rest.
   Something else that I should mention is that Elder Nelson left to see his family today. Elder when you read this know that I was the first to email you when you got home :) Now touch the dream of playing college ball!!!! He is a dear friend and a hero to me. Elder Nelson served 2 complete years and certainly gave his all. He will be missed, even to the point of tears, but the effect he had on the mission field and the people of Jamaica. Love you Scooter!
   Well that sums it up this week. Love you all!

Paperwprk passed!! 7-19-14

   Well this last time we went we retained 3 of the basketball guys. Plus we had 2 show up after we finished. It was another wonderfully powerful lesson. We felt prompted to teach on the Plan of Salvation and come to find out that one of the Brothers we were teaching just lost his grandma, he was very close. That is the Spirit in action for you. Man, without the Spirit this work truly is impossible. We are supposed to teach them later today but, one of the is out of town so I will certainly keep you posted.
   This last week there isn't much to tell about. We had a lot of fun with Cesear, also he tired us out. The 12+ hour drive all around the island was taxing on me, but all seems to be better now. The office is finally where is needs to be and I am happy to say that I have given it my all. Whether I stay or I go I know that if I were to relive the last 6 months that I wouldn't do anything different. It is funny, 6 months ago I had revelation on a few things that needed to happen here in the office as well as in our area and branch. Over the course of the last 6 months all have been accomplished. These last 2 transfers in particular have made me stretch a lot. I have grown a lot as well.
   Boy do I love this place, it will forever be etched upon my heart. Other than Cesear coming, not much else is worth reporting. The area is up and running, there is still so much to do in the area but I suppose that is how you want an area to be always having more to be done in it. We have been finding people to teach, teaching people, and helping less actives come back. Nothing compares to the joy I feel when someone finally decides to trust God. It is spectacular. Well we are just preparing for transfers, everything is in order and should go, once again, smoothly. Thanks again for all you do. Love you.
   Not a whole lot to talk about this week. We had Cesear Rosario come. On thursday we drove the whole island of Jamaica looking at all the cars. What a trip! It was beautiful especially since we took some of the ways that most people don't take, simply stunning. The drive was very taxing on my body though, I guess any time you drive 12+ hours will simply take it out of you. Overall it was a good experience. Cesear was especially pleased with how all the paperwork was done, he said "this is the best mission with all the papers and filings. Your two elders are very good, very good." (he is still learning english)
   Elder Allen, I got him talking on video so we can see if you understand him when we get home okay? Cool, yep, the area is still going very well! There is simply too much to do in my area and not enough time to do it. I wish I had more time to teach, soon come. Damain and his family are almost ready for marriage. We found out some details that the marriage certificate isn't as much as we once thought. I sure hope I get to see them get married before I leave! That would be just treat for me. Keep in your prayers Rohan. Rohan or JR is supposed to be baptised this next week. Pray that he will endure to the end, pray that he will have the desire to read from
the Book of Mormon daily. I know that God will answer your prayers in splendid ways. I see them answered on a daily basis. That is pretty much it for me this week. I love you all. Have a wonderful week!

Elder Henderson

Dirty basketball and Discussions 7-12-14

   The time seems to slip by faster and faster. Boy I am not sure where to start.....I guess I will start with an amazing experience we just had. On Tuesday Elder Martin and I had some appointments fall through, unfortunately we called everyone and no one was available so we decided to go street contacting. As we were driving to the point we agreed on we saw a huge group of people gathered around watching some guys playing some basketball. Being very interested because we were in the heart of the ghetto I pulled over and we got out. Elder Martin found someone to talk to who was watching the game, and I decided to go over to some of the players who were sitting watching waiting for their turn. I started talking to one by the name of Shaggy (I can't remember his real name right now.), and in the spur of the moment decided to challenge their best 3 basketball players to a match of 3 v 3 game the next day at 5:30 (if we win we got to teach all of them, if we lose I had to buy them a soda); well, everyone who was watching, basically the whole community laughed me to scorn. Even so we took off. The next day we called the zone leaders to come be on my team and play, for their dinner break, to which the readily agreed. At 5:30 we started, it was street ball so there were no fouls (we got the whole thing on video if you want to watch) and the other team was not going to let some white dudes just show them up. So, once they found out that were actually decent they started playing dirty. Long story short, we won by 2; 31-29. Everyone blew up when we won, haha it was awesome. Most importantly I think is we gained their respect as well as everyone who watched. Well, the second part of the story is that we went back today to teach them, and wow.....what a powerful lesson. Every single one of those players opened up, the Spirit was strong and many people joined in for the lesson. I just can't believe what a powerful experience we just had. Not only was the Spirit present but every single person there opened up, and shared some of their deeper feelings, that was something I didn't expect. 
   In the middle of the lesson, some man came up to us and started telling us there was no God. What is even better is the ball player who, didn't believe there was a God confounded him. God uses many different ways in silencing the wicked. At the end of the lesson, they all jumped and asked us when we would come back to teach them more. They all agreed to pray and ask god if we were telling the truth, as well as read the plan of salvation. We shared with the man who didn't believe in God, the story of Ammon. He was touched, I could see it in his eyes. He very solemnly said that he would try it for himself and see if he got the same feelings he had when we were teaching him. I just wish you were there. I learned that God uses our talents to bring forth his work, even with a silly game of basketball. 
   Everything else is still going. The office is running smoothly again and we are finishing up everything, just in time too with Cesar coming this week. We will see how that goes. Elder Martin is doing better and better everyday. He is taking the lead more and more, he knows what is going on here in the office. He is an amazing Elder. 
   Well that is it for this letter. I love you!

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