Wednesday, November 23, 2016

November 21, 2016 -- There's "Snow" Way It's This Cold

Saturday started out a warm Fall day but as the night progressed it stared getting colder and colder. Sun turned to rain, rain turned to snow and that meant it was time to put on the winter coats. The snow is sticking around so it looks like we're in for a chilly winter.  Otherwise, it's been a week just like any other.

Last night Elder Rasband and I had an amazing lesson with Louie. Elders have been meeting with Louie for just about a year. He is a great guy who knows a lot about the Bible and was very religious in the past. He has had a rough life in the past but is doing very well with his family now. Due to some past experiences, he questions God's authority.  That makes it pretty hard to teach since the first point we teach is God is our loving heavenly father. Everything builds on this simple but important truth. Sometimes our lessons get a little heated because of how passionate he is about his views. He doesn't do it to Bible bash with us but he is a very passionate guy. At our lesson last night, we decided to go around and say some things we are thankful for before we started our lesson. That instantly invited the Spirit and set the tone for the whole lesson. We read some of the Book of Mormon with Louie and bore our testimonies of the forgiving power of Jesus Christ. Louie stayed calm throughout the whole thing and we could see his heart soften. I know that having a thankful attitude is one of the best ways to invite the Spirit.

The sky is blue... kinda... the Church is true and life is good.  Have a great thanksgiving!! 
Love, Elder Carlile

Monday, November 14, 2016

November 14, 2016 -- Sound the Trump!!!

Sound the "Trump"... at least that's what everyone's been talking about since he's now our new president. This week has been Crazy with a capital "C"!! I was so ready to hit the hay last night. My brain was not working and teaching was a struggle.  Doing better today though.  It's been getting a lot cooler which means... sweater season as well as leaf raking season!

So one of the things I'm super grateful for this week is Marie coming to the Book of Mormon class we do every Wednesday night in the Elmira ward.  While she was there, she asked a question about  repentance and the whole class helped answer that one. When we missionaries go teach her, we meet on her porch and things get a little hectic.  We can loose control of the situation easily. That's why it's so great she came to the Book of Mormon class.

On Friday, Elder Steven E. Snow spoke to us for mission conference.  It was in Liverpool just north of Syracuse.  Elder Snow's wife spoke about the importance of hymns in our worship on Sundays. He spoke on recognizing the Spirit in our work as missionaries. Overall, he spoke on very simple stuff but it was still nice to hear the words of a Seventy. He said that our mission is doing very well and that we should keep up the good work. He is a very kind man with a good spirit about him. When we were shaking the hands of President and Sister Rogers and Elder and Sister Snow, President told me to tell Elder Snow that I was President Rogers favorite 7 foot missionary. It's a little joke we have. When I shook Elder Snow's hand I delivered the message and he got a good chuckle out of it. I was pumped to see all the mission buds and reconnect with them. 

The sky is blue, the Church is true and life is good.
Elder Carlile
Fall Is Beautiful

Leaf "Raking"

Monday, November 7, 2016

November 7, 2016 -- Another Week, Another Wonder

Another week another wonder... more just me wondering what in the world went on this week. In a nut shell this week included leaf raking, teaching, exchanges, talking with some peeps about the Gospel, getting a bit of a cold, Stake Conference, and last but not least some good laughs here and there.

So we have been teaching Margaret for a little while but we have been meeting with her less because she wants to be in "her hole" most of the time.  But on Friday, Elder Rasband and I were out working in the afternoon and I had a feeling that we should go see her. We went over and sure enough she was having a good day. She gladly invited us in and, as usual, we sat and had a good lesson. That was neat. It was nice to have that feeling that you are in the right place at the right time. Now Margaret totally knows that the Book of Mormon is true and so the next step for her is getting ready for baptism. Elder Rasband and I knew that, but, after that lesson, I really think Margaret came to know that as well.
Yesterday we had Stake Conference in Owego. Elder Dunigan, who is the area authority, came and spoke. He is an excellent speaker and very involved with the congregation. He randomly calls on people in the congregation to come up and participate. Elder Rasband and I went and sang in the choir so that meant that we had to stay alert or at least look like we were... it was good though. I got to see a bunch of the Binghampton ward members!! It's always comforting to see people from your past area. It's weird to think that it has been almost a year since I was there.

I really love the words of Nephi when he says, "I have trusted in thee, and I will trust in him forever." As we trust in the Lord, he will give us what it is that we need and what others need. That is super useful as a missionary as we are focusing on the needs of our investigators. Our trust with our Father in Heaven goes two ways though. We trust him and do his work and in turn He trusts us with more promptings as we act on the ones he already gave us. I know who I trust and I will try my best to serve him forever.

The sky is blue, the Church is true and life is good.

Elder Carlile
"Swinging" Service in Elmira

October 31, 2016 -- Trick Or Treat

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!! I hope you all have your costumes ready. I sure do..... I'm going out as a missionary, but if I was going to dress up out of the norm then I would dress up as slender man. I actually did dress up as him the other night but that was just to scare the living daylights out of another missionary. BTW it totally worked but that's another story for another time!! 

In the spirit of Halloween, our ward had a trunk or treat on Friday and Marie and her kids came. We have been teaching Marie and her family for about a month now. The ward was super friendly, kind, and welcoming to her. Her two boys loved it as well.  Her little 7 year old was running around talking to all the kids and sharing his candy with them as well. Elder Rasband and I grabbed some BK crowns while we were getting some dinner so that we would have some costume. We called ourselves the kingsmen as a little joke. Some people got a good kick out of that.

We haven't been meeting with Margaret as much this week. She is struggling with some depression. We still stay in contact with her but she has better days than others. We fasted with her yesterday for it. I am grateful for this gospel and how, because of the atonement of Jesus Christ, our burdens do not have to be carried alone.

The sky is blue, the Church is true and life is good.
Have a great week, Elder Carlile
Slender Man

The Kingsmen