Friday, August 19, 2016

The Thug Life Chose Me (12/7/15)

Another week in paradise!  McComb is one interesting place. An elder in my district put it like this: "When people in Mississippi say that the thug life chose them, they mean it." I've said it before, but this place really is foreign compared to how I grew up. People fear for their physical safety every day - at home, at school, and on the streets. It's opened my eyes to how so many people live.

That being said, this environment breeds some strong-willed people. I will quickly speak of some of the African American women I've met - they are fireballs. At a lesson with an 52 year-old investigator and an 80 year-old member, we became helpless to intervene as they got to loudly discussing how to defend yourself around here. We just had to sit back and laugh about some of the things said: "Back off, cuz Madear's in the HOUSE!" and then on another topic but in the same lesson: "After 3 hours of church?! If you ain't got God by then, you ain't gonna get Him!" People say the funniest things, I swear. Talking about the Book of Mormon, "Those demons are RIDICULOUS!" Also, it's not "street," it's "skreet." It's not "children," it's "churren." I wish y'all could hear these people. They keep a smile on my face every day.
Our investigator D committed to stop smoking so she could be baptized, and we sealed the deal with a pinky promise that'd she'd be smoke-free by the end of this week! She and her grandkids came to church this week - we were SO happy! She's getting really close to being ready to take the plunge!

Now, for the real news. I like to eat. I can eat like a bird, or I can eat like a garbage disposal. So my district leader challenged me to an eat-off. We got these identical "illegal burritos" after a Zone Training Meeting this week. It was like a foot and a half long and weighed like 5 pounds. Don't worry, I represented big-appetited women around the world well. I downed that thing like a champ. And it destroyed me for the rest of the day. But my pride was on the line, so I followed through.

To summarize the rest of this week, it's like every other: every day is full of struggles and miracles and the spirit. This is God's work because this is His gospel. This is his true and living church. And I'm so grateful to be a part of it and to have the blessing of sharing it with others full-time, including the opportunities to be painfully bold and awkward.

"A man filled with the love of God is not content with blessing his family alone, but ranges through the whole world, anxious to bless the whole human race." - Joseph Smith

Love y'all to the moon and back!

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