Monday, December 14, 2015

December 14: Email Chain

In this entry, I included emails from me and my husband to give context to a few of the things Parker talks about.

From: Parker Rice
Date: December 14, 2015 at 10:16 AM
Subject: Transfers


I did get the coat and thermals, but I didn’t get the others. Maybe I didn’t pick it all up or it just came later. I’ll check today.

Transfers turned out just fine. Elder L. is pretty cool, so I’m not worried anymore. I do have to be careful though. All the other elders visit the blog, so I can’t bag on them. Not that I would, of course ... *cough*

It’s definitely a plus that he’s seen Over the Garden Wall, though.

So we revisited a bunch of referrals that we couldn’t seem to get a hold of before and got a ton of return appointments. At one of the houses, we almost didn’t go to because we couldn’t find the street (some parts of Shawnee are laid out weird). When we finally got there, we met a lady in her car who just happened to be on her phone with her daughter who was confirmed a member just that day. She said, “I was just saying to her, ‘There’s two guys on bikes who just rode up. Yes, they have ties. Yes, they have tags. Yes, they say they’re missionaries.’” She didn’t actually live at the house, but was related to the lady living there. Because of that experience, she let us in and we got to set up a return appointment. Kind of cool that we just pulled up in time.

We also taught a lesson with Sister T. Her husband has been becoming active again and she wanted to know what this religion is about. She is very thorough and analytical in her search and sometimes she asks the questions like, “What about Emma Smith after Joseph died?” She has faith that Joseph is a prophet, and in the possibility in modern prophets, and wants a temple marriage, but has a lot of questions and is looking for resources for personal study (she seems stuck on it and is a little frustrated that she can’t find answers). She goes to LDS.org and has studied through the canon. Do you have any books on it? Know of any? She’ll probably still be baptized, but we just thought it would be helpful. (This is also the lady who invited one of our other investigators to church a while back.)

Her son is also now investigating again. He let us know after the lesson about his personal search for God over the years. He has some interesting beliefs (such as reincarnation), and believes that our church is the closest to what God had intended, but he rejects organized religion. He still wants to know what our church is about and has come to church. (He is the 23-year-old mentioned in the previous email). We’re going to go ahead with the lessons and try to answer the questions he still has about God/life/purpose and hope that he’s open to the Spirit bearing witness. It may be hard for him though.

It’s been a lot of fun out here so far and I’m feeling that the work is going to really pick up this week. Thanks, Aunt Alisa, for the email! Thank you for sharing that experience. It really strengthens my faith in modern miracles. I’m getting to enjoy the fulfilling of some out here.

Merry Christmas!

Love,
Elder Rice

From: Merrijane Rice
Date: December 14, 2015 at 10:23 AM
Subject: RE: Transfers


Just a quick response about resources for Sister T. She might try fairmormon.org. This is an apologetics resource that covers historical as well as doctrinal issues. She can access the question/answer wiki here: http://en.fairmormon.org/Main_Page

I’ll think about what books she might be interested in this week. Right off the top of my head is Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, by Richard L. Bushman.

From: Jason Rice
Date: December 14, 2015 at 10:25 AM
Subject: Letter from Dad 12_14_2015


Parker,

Sorry this is so late. Nathan was on the computer last night with homework and I couldn’t get to it. We have had a HUGE snowstorm. We received over a foot of snow. It would be great except for two things. First, it is very heavy and I had to shovel it by myself. With my back, that can be a challenge. Second, Nathan got in a small fender-bender this morning. The truck has barely a scratch, but the other car has a messed up back left bumper. No one was hurt but Nathan said that he feels a little dumb. I told him that it was just his lack of experience and not to worry about it. Apparently the other car slid off the road heading up out of our neighborhood just before turning on to the road going over the overpass. The truck started slipping and instead of keeping his foot off of the brake, he pushed on it hard causing the truck to continue to slide in the snow. I had just told him how to handle such a situation. But I think until you have actually experienced it, it is hard to understand. I will take him driving tonight to practice.

We had a couple of Christmas parties last week. But best of all, I got to provide a small orientation to one the new apostles, Elder Renlund. Both he and his wife are really sharp and I hardly had to say anything at all in way of explanations.

Sorry this is so short. I just came in from shoveling for the second time. I’m a little tired. I’m not going into the office because traffic is so bad.

I love you,
Dad

From: Parker Rice
Date: December 14, 2015 at 10:45 AM
Subject: Snow


I think you’d find it interesting to know that it was 76 degrees out here just yesterday. I don’t know what’s the deal with the weather out here, but it’s all over the place.

You could probably get Nathan and Joshua to shovel out the driveway in the morning if they wake up early. Don’t throw your back, old guy.

Love,
Elder Rice

From: Parker Rice
Date: December 14, 2015 at 10:53 AM
Subject: For Mom


The coat you sent is awesome. I was burning up even with the wind and rain when we were biking. Funny that earlier that day it was 76 degrees (I don’t know if you caught Dad’s reply).

Thanks for the references as well. I’m really excited to share those. With all that you’ve taught me about those kinds of things I haven’t had a problem with any of the questions she’s asked. I know some of the answers and have faith that there are answers to the ones I don’t know.

I’m not at all worried about this next transfer. As a district, we all seem to be getting along and working hard so everyone’s excited for the future. I still think that some of the ward misses Elder S., but with how awesome Elder L. is, I think we’ll be fine.

Did you see Sister L.’s dancing elf videos? If not, ask!

Love you Mom,
Elder Rice