Sunday, July 24, 2016

Week 44

Well this week was alright. We didn't get done what I expected to because I forgot we had to go up to Canberra for training.

So Monday we went on the hike I said we would go on. It was alright. It wasn't what I expected, but it was still good. We found a rope swing that I will for sure get back to after my mission.

Tuesday we went and helped Debbie Parker and we also helped someone that was moving take their stuff to the dump.

Wednesday we did some indexing in the morning. So far I have indexed over 400 names since I have been in Merimbula. Then we went and taught Wendy. She had questions that we were able to answer, and she is spiritually sensitive, so that’s great. She said that she wanted to come to church, so we gave her the details and she didn't show up. She was busy that day. One of her friends was in the hospital and she felt she needed to be there for him.

Then Thursday we helped Josh Shoobridge move a shipping container, and then we went to Canberra for the meeting on Friday, then came home Friday night.

Saturday morning we went for a 5K run in Merimbula. I finished second in my age group with a time of 25 minutes, and we are starting to get to know everyone that does the run. There is about 50 people who participate. Then we went to a mountain bike club meeting to volunteer to time their next race. We have already gotten to know everybody in charge of organizing the race. One of them is Sam Parker who we later did service for that day. Then Sunday was just a normal day.

Some things that are coming up this week is today we are teaching Wendy again. Then we were brainstorming this awesome lesson for the members. So far it is really good I think. It starts out with a story.

A young and successful executive was traveling down a neighborhood street, going a bit too fast in his new Jaguar. He was watching for kids darting out from between parked cars and slowed down when he thought he saw something. As his car passed, no children appeared. Instead, a brick smashed into the Jag's side door! 

He slammed on the brakes and spun the Jag back to the spot from where the brick had been thrown. He jumped out of the car, grabbed some kid and pushed him up against a parked car shouting,  "What was that all about and who are you? Just what do you think you are doing?" Building up a head of steam, he went on. "That's a new car and that brick you threw is going to cost a lot of money. Why did you do it?"

"Please, mister, please. I'm sorry, but I didn't know what else to do!" pleaded the youngster. "I threw the brick because no one else would stop." Tears were dripping down the boy's chin as he pointed around the parked car. "It's my brother," he said. "He rolled off the curb and fell out of his wheelchair and I can't lift him up." Sobbing, the boy asked the executive, "Would you please help me get him back into his wheelchair? He's hurt and he's too heavy for me."

Moved beyond words, the driver tried to swallow the rapidly swelling lump in his throat. He lifted the young man back into the wheelchair and took out his handkerchief and wiped the scrapes and cuts, checking to see that everything was going to be okay. "Thank you and God bless you," the grateful child said to him. The man then watched the little boy push his brother down the sidewalk toward their home. 

It was a long walk back for the man to his Jaguar...a long, slow walk. He never did repair the side door. He kept the dent to remind him not to go through life so fast that someone has to throw a brick at you to get your attention.

And then we will share a scripture from (Doctrine and Covenants 61:3) "It is not needful for … mine elders to be moving swiftly … whilst the inhabitants on either side are perishing in unbelief."

Then invite them to look for unplanned service opportunities to serve their fellow man and to be an example. That’s what we got so far. I loved the story. I thought it was great. I know that sometimes we can be busy, but we need to slow down and look for those who stand in need and help them. I know that as we do so that the lord will help us out with our own trials and make it possible for us to help more and more people in our path. I hope that we all can be sensitive enough to hear the promptings of the spirit and let Heavenly Father guide our paths. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Well that was my week. I hope you have a great week ahead of you! I love you all and will talk to you next week.

Elder Newman

The rope swing on the hike. It goes out into a river that is close to the ocean so I don’t know if there are sharks.

Elder Plata feeding Sam Parker’s baby.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Week 43

This week was pretty good. Monday after we got done with email and shopping we went on a hike around the coast in Pambula. We are going to go on that same hike again today because we went the wrong way. So we are going to go to a cool overlook of the ocean today.

Tuesday we did some service for Debbie Parker pruning trees and taking stuff to the tip(dump). Wednesday we helped Josh Shoobridge out with cutting firewood. One log that I carried over we cut with the chainsaw and like 15 Huntsman spiders crawled out from the center. The center of the log was hollow. I was checking myself for them the rest of the day.

Thursday we did some service at Mandeni, and for Sam Parker we fixed a mountain bike track. Then we had to test out the track, so we road with the Shoobridge family and the Parkers. It was a good ride. I got really tired, and Elder Plata said it was hard for him to walk afterwards, haha.

Friday we taught the Walker kids, and Joven was there this time so we were able to teach him a little bit. He also came to church this week.

Saturday morning we had our first MCM (missionary coordination meeting). It was pretty good. Sam has some great goals for the area, and he makes me excited about this area. Then we went to Eden and visited the Waymouths. They don’t get visited a lot here because they live so far away, but it was a good visit. She like gave us all of her food. I guess that is just the grandma in her coming out because we are the same age as her grand kids, haha. Then later that day we had dinner with Sam Parker’s family.

Sunday was pretty normal except for the Elder Quorum lesson. A guy gave me his phone to follow along in the lesson because we didn’t have our book, and the phone felt so awkward in my hand, haha. Got to love the missionary life.

Then we finally were able to contact the referral we got last week. They had just gotten home from a road trip in America, and on that road trip they went to Temple Square and met the missionaries there. That’s how we got the referral. We had been going over every day since we got the referral, and she was finally home today. But she was sick and tired because of the flight. I felt bad for her because I knew how long the flight was, so we gave her a Book of Mormon and set up an appointment for Wednesday at 2pm. So I am really excited about it because we are finally able to start teaching someone.

That was the highlight of my week. I love you all! Have a great week.

Love, Elder Newman  

 Mountain biking..

 Dinner and dessert , a warm doughnut with ice cream on top..

Cooking over the fire for dinner at Sam's, egg and bacon sandwiches and potatoes.. you can’t see them very well but they are cooking in the fire.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Week 42

This week we had a mission conference on Tuesday in Mortdale so we left here at 5 o'clock and stayed in Canberra that night, and then caught a bus at 5 in the morning headed to Mortdale so that we could get there on time.

The conference was great. They taught us how to deal with stress just like it says in “Adjusting to Missionary Life.” They also gave us some really good street contacting ideas. And since that’s all it seems like we do here in Merimbula and the Australia Sydney South Mission, they taught us some ways to get motivated to do the work.

After that we took the bus back down ts Canberra and stayed the night again and left in the morning. We got back to Merimbula around 3pm and went and visited the Walker family.

Thursday we went to Bega, visited some people there, and did some weekly planning. Friday we did service for the first part of the day which was pretty easy. All it was, was cleaning windows. And then after that we went home and cleaned our flat because this was the last week of the transfer.

Saturday was service all day. The first part of the day we were sorting and stacking logs and then cutting them up and then splitting them. The other part of the day was yet again helping someone move house. And man was this house dirty!

Then Sunday we got a Branch Mission Leader. His name is Sam Parker. He is the man! I get along with him very well. He has given us some ideas to help transition from service to teaching because right now we are doing a whole lot of service and not a lot of teaching as you can tell from my letters home.

Today is day one of another new transfer. I am staying in Merimbula for another 6 weeks.
I almost forgot we got a referral on Friday. This girl referred herself to the missionaries and wants a Book of Mormon and the discussions. Please pray for her. Her name is Wendy.

Thanks for everything.
Love Elder Newman

So this right here is a snake. It took some convincing, but Elder Plata finally got me to hold it. They must do this kind of thing in the Philippines all the time. It wasn't until after that we found out that this was a tiger snake, one of the top 10 most poisonous snakes on earth. I am so glad that nobody got hurt. I got one cool picture though.
The snake is plastic, haha.

Bus ride back home from Mortdale..

 Fun on the Trampoline

 Elder Plata is one great chef!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Week 41

Not a whole lot here on this end, it’s pretty much the same as last week. Today we are going to head to Canberra so that we can go to Sydney for another mission conference. Elder John is getting transferred, so he will pack all of his stuff today so that we don't make two trips to Sydney and waste our K's, so that we stay under our limit. So it’s just going to be me and Elder Plata in Merimbula. I have enjoyed serving with Elder John. He is a great missionary. I hope he does well in his other areas.

This week was a lot of service. We helped people move house again, and we have another family moving house this week.

One thing that happened this week was we met Joven's Grandma, and she is a nice lady so we might be able to start teaching her as well as Joven. We are trying our hardest to be able to work with Joven. Our whole goal is to act and not be acted upon, but sometimes you just got to wait till people are comfortable with being taught.

This gospel does bring joy to the lives of the people who follow Christ. It gives them hope. It gives them a sense of belonging. Most importantly it gives them a knowledge that they aren't alone. They have a Father in Heaven that loves them and knows them personally, and he wants to help us, we just have to let him. When we understand that we have a Heavenly Father, we understand that we have divine Eternal Potential, and that's something that we can strive for as a goal. That knowledge gives us the path that we should follow, and as we strive to make that goal a reality, I have no doubt that our father in heaven will help us accomplish that goal. He wants what’s best for us.

I hope you all know that you have a Heavenly Father, and I hope you understand how much he loves you. I hope that all made sense. It did to me. I love you all. Have a great week.

Love, Elder Newman

This bird belongs to a member. It's pretty mean. It tries to bite. I was hoping it didn't land on my shoulder.

Norma, one of the members, has a house out in the bush. So when we got to her house she told us to walk down to the creek. It was a little creepy in some spots. I was watching out for crocs.