Monday, August 26, 2013

Green hotdogs for the greenie

August 26, 2013


Well I'm only 2 days away from completing my first transfer, or my first 6 weeks! Wednesday will be the day! They are sending me back over to the Cunningham Branch which is the Spanish Branch in the same area, so I'm kinda just going back to where I started! Most people who wait for their visas go through about two transfers or 3 months before they get clearance to go, so I'm almost there! I think.

I've been enjoying English though! We had a family come to church yesterday, the Hendersons. The father is deaf and the mother is Kenyan and they have three kids! All of them came and the wife signed for the dad, but he lip reads really well, so she wasn't too busy. But we also found a ward that has a lot of resources for the dear. It’s outside of our mission boundaries, but we might send them there just so they can relax a little bit more.

We also met a lot of other people, and we have a baptism this Saturday! His name is Kamrick , and he is the son of a member who was less active when he turned 8. So his parents set up the appointments, we taught him, and that was that.

The work here is booming! The mission has had 48 baptisms in August, and the mission goal is 70. We had 24 baptisms on Saturday alone, and we will probably hit the mission goal after this next weekend. The mission president really gives us a "Vision to Baptize," and it has really motivated us to work as hard as we can!

So a fun story that happened this week, we have a sister in our ward who makes all the Greenies (new missionaries) a greenie dinner. So we had Green Hotdogs, green buns, green mac n cheese, green everything. It felt weird eating, but it tasted fine! I mean where can you go wrong with hot dogs? On a mission I guess I've expanded my menu a little bit. I've eaten Quesadillas, peanut butter sandwiches, and hotdogs---Unless members have us over. Let’s just say I love member dinners.

Anyway, hope all is well at home!

Monday, August 19, 2013

It is legal here to take road kill home to eat

Hey Everyone

It’s been a very good week with a lot of miracles seen everyday. On Friday I found out that they are planning on keeping me here in the Smyrna ward until the end of the transfer. Which really is just next Wednesday. I've kinda gotten to the point where I just need to put my trust in the lord. He knows where I can be the most useful, and I think he's just going to move me where ever he sees fit. And I guess if he can split the Red Sea, he can place me where I need to be.

I do admit though, I enjoy understanding everything. It’s very nice to be able to say what I want to say, and hear what everyone is saying, well I guess almost everything. Sometimes the southern accent is a little too much for me, but I'm trying.

We've been teaching a lot of people this week, and one thing that I've really learned is how important the Bible, along with the Book of Mormon is in our lives. I was just flipping through it the other day, and came across one of the most powerful scriptures I have ever seen. Its Romans 8: 35-39. I encourage y'all (haha I've wanted to say y'all for a long time) to look up and read this scripture, mainly because its a little too long to type, but it only takes 10 seconds to read. Seriously though, this scripture says that nothing on the earth or not on the earth can separate us from our Saviors love. Nothing. This is a comfort to me.

Everyday I seem to gain a testimony on our Saviors love for each and every one of us and it’s on a personal level.

Anyway, some fun facts about Georgia. We were at a member’s home for dinner and they have deer that come into the backyard and eat their garden. So they plan on doing what any normal, civil human being will do. They plan on waiting in a tree so they can shoot it with their friends bow and arrow. And yes they were being serious... So if I visit them again and we have deer burgers, I know why.

Also apparently it’s legal to take road kill home with you and use it as food. I guess its better than just leaving it on the side of the road, but still, I'm a little disturbed that enough people are doing it that they had to make a law about it.

Last thing, mainly for Allie, Sarah, Zach, Natalie, and Elsie: I talked with this one guy who’s from Arkansas. And without me even bringing up the topic, he talked about how many Armadillos lived there. He said that they were everywhere.

Anyway, Have a fantastic week everybody, I love you all!

Elder Chipman

Monday, August 12, 2013

I need to inform y'all on some changes

Elder Chipman at Zone Conference

So before I say too much on what has happened, I need to inform y'all on some changes that have been made. One of the English Missionaries in the area had to go home due to medical reasons. He was having troubles with some of his medication, and so needed to go home to get that fixed up. As a result, guess who is in the Smyrna Ward now, ME! For at least the next week, I will be the companion to Elder Evans teaching and preaching in English. Honestly its a little weird, you know, going to church and understanding what people are saying. I think its only temporary, they say only until Friday, but until then I'm going to be speaking in English!

That change happened on Saturday Morning, so the majority of the week was spent speaking Spanish. The only really eventful thing that happened was when Elder Bakes locked the keys in the car. We were heading in for dinner at the apartment, and as we approached the door, Elder Bakes reached in his pocket, and a stunned look came over his face. He said that he forgot the keys, and at first we thought he was kidding (He's tried to pull that stunt before) But as we went back outside, we say the keys, still sitting in the ignition. So the last three hours of the day were spent waiting for the office elders to come up and bring us the spare. We met some of our neighbors who were really nice though. She brought us cookies and sloppy joes and we were able to talk to her and her family for a little bit.

On the English side of things, I had a really cool experience. In D&C it talks about how if we are obedient, we will not be confounded. Yesterday we were knocking on doors and we met this heavily Christian Couple. The Man was 86 and started out like he wanted to bash with us about what the Bible said about Hell and Baptism, and stuff like that. We were able to turn the tables into more of a conversation than a debate. We were able to teach him a lot about the Plan of Salvation, and how we can baptize those who weren't able to be baptized in this life. We talked about the Bible, and a lot of his beliefs were the same as ours, in that through tons of translations, certain truths were lost. I was then able to bear my testimony, how we could talk and teach all day, but the only way for him to know is by Praying, Searching, and Asking our Father in Heaven. I really felt good, saying what I wanted to say, and I really felt the spirit there. It was really cool.

Anyway, things I learned from Georgia.

1. I really do sweat a lot
2. Mosquitoes are my worst enemy
3. There are actually hills (I didn't figure that out until I started riding a bike)

I'm sure that list will grow longer the longer I stay out. Any way…..

Yo se que mi Salvador vive, y yo se que el Libro de Mormon es verdadero, y podemos crecer mas cerca de dios si leyemos el Libro y oramos a DIos.

I know that my Savior lives, and I know that the Book of Mormon is true, and we can grow closer to God if we read the book and pray to god.

I lean so much every day, thanks for all of you prayers!

Elder Chipman

Ps: I'm still snacking on my hidden stash of Oreos!
Elder Chipman at the Atlanta Temple

Monday, August 5, 2013

My Oreos are safe!


It’s been another great week in Georgia! We've seen many miracles and I know that we will continue to see many as we continue to work hard, and do what we're supposed to do! One of those miracles is that none of the other Elders have discovered my stash of Golden Oreos. I made the mistake and shared my Honey Mustard Pretzels, and let’s just say that there aren't any left. But my Oreos are safe!

Another Miracle is that we had two investigators come to church yesterday! Their names are Juan and Gladys and they are neighbors with some of the members in the branch. We're going to be having Home Evening with them tonight and I really think they are going to be having some really cool experiences in the future with them.

The coolest part about this week was when we were tracting through a kinda shady trailer park. We were knocking on someone's door when a neighbor yelled at us and told us that they weren't home. So, we thought, "They're not home, but I know you are!" So we went over to talk to him. He invited us on his porch and it reeked of alcohol. He sat on his chair and next to him were at least 10 empty bottles of beer and another one he was in the process of finishing. As we talked to him, he said that he has a lot of problems, and that he needs help. As we talked to him, I think we gave him a little bit of hope because he decided to allow us to come back. On our second visit, we talked to him some more, and he has a lot of problems. But as we told him what he needed to do, he had us pour out his beer in the sink, and he said that he wants to start repenting. We taught him how to pray and shared with him some scriptures. We then invited him to be baptized, and he said yes without hesitation. He's got a long ways to go, but I know that he can find forgiveness and be healed through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. One of my favorite scriptures is Philipians 4:13.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

I know that he can change his life around. I look forward to working with him and seeing the gospel really make a difference in his life! 

I know that our father in heaven loves each and every one of us including Carlos (the guy I just talked about). He wants to help him, and I can't wait to see him if he allows the Gospel to change him.

Spanish is still going well. I feel like I know a little bit more every day. But I still have a long way to go! Its going to be a process, but something that Preach my Gospel says is that the Lord provides a way for us to accomplish what he commands us. I've heard that before, but I never thought of it in a language sense. I've been commanded to speak Spanish, so it’s really cool to think that I will have help accomplishing it.

Anyway, we're starting to get stuff done here in the Cunningham branch, and I know that we are going to receive a lot of success as we continue to do what is right. I just feel like there is a ton of potential in this area, we just need to get out and get it started!

Anyway, it’s been a good week! Hope all is well.

Elder Chipman