Monday, October 10, 2016

Happy Columbus Day from the Great Ohio Columbus Mission!!

Awkward district.. On Wednesdays we wear pink!! (I love my district we are all hilarious)
We got our flu shots!
Nightmare on......
Our guitar friend!

From our hike!
 Hi family and friends!
This week was great but it's been full of highs and lows. Mostly highs though!! I'll start with the bad news... M. decided he doesn't want to meet with us anymore. He expressed appreciation for our "nursing back to spiritual health" but he said he has been helped enough and now just wants to go back to being a baptist. We were really sad, but we know he will come around eventually. Whether it's here or in the spirit world. A member that has been an awesome fellowshipper for him has suggested that we call him in a month or so to see if he is still spiritually progressing. If he's not, we will help him recognize the influence the church has on his life. It's always sad losing someone solid, but it's okay. God opened a lot of doors...

So I guess I've never really tried fasting super whole heartedly, so I decided to try it out to see the results. One of the things I fasted for was to be able to find people who are prepared to receive the restored gospel and be willing and ready to make and keep commitments. We started our fast after lunch for convenience purposes and got to work. We went to Chauncey, a small town about 2 miles from our apartments. We drive through it pretty often, but we haven't ever stopped in to meet anyone. From what we could see, it was a ghetto little place that is just run down and full of hicks. During our weekly planning the week before, we were praying to see who we could ask for referrals. We thought of a fairly recent convert and decided to go see him. He was the reason we decided to go to Chauncey in the first place. As soon as we parked, we talked to a couple who was interested in learning more. We instantly found that Chauncey is actually super cute and full of fun happy families :):):). When we visited the recent convert, he gave us a few referrals and even introduced us to one of them. Almost each of these people we were able to teach were touched by the spirit and invited us back to teach more. We followed our plans and went to tract on a random street in Chauncey. There is a family there who is also so prepared for the gospel. We're excited! The last thing in Chauncey was following up with a former investigator. This guy had moved, but his brother was here. His brother wasn't particularly interested, but he gave us a few referrals around him to contact! We talked with them and both the super cool old guy and the cute young family were excited to hear about the gospel and set up a return appointment to hear more. We have six return appointments in Chauncey for next Saturday, we are so excited! Every person we taught a quick lesson to was willing to let us come back to share more, So thankful God responded to our fast and blessed us immediately. I'm excited to see how all of the return appointments go next week!

W. (the guy that watched general conference) is still awesome!! So this week I was looking through the notes mom took during my setting apart and saw some cool things I wanted to more fully activate. One of these things was to not hesitate to call down blessings from heaven. I had that in mind and went on through the day... We had a lesson with W. later that night that was so powerful. We taught him about God and His nature. He was mind blown that there was a being that loved HIM so much. We talked about prayer, which he had never heard of, and he was able to say a prayer with us. The spirit was so strong and he was stoked about a God and the church. After the lesson, Sister Blaser complimented something that I said to him. I guess there was a super specific promise I gave him regarding his schooling and success as he continues to put forth effort to learn about God and the gospel. I don't remember saying this or anything like it. I know God was using me as a mouthpiece to promise blessings to him! Since then, I've been making an effort to promise specific and sincere blessings to people and it's been really cool. W. came to church yesterday and is planning to go to institute on campus this week! Yay! We will also have probably two lessons with him this week. 

We got to be on campus for a few hours on Tuesday! We met a bunch of cool people that still haven't texted us back... Haha campus missionary life. But we did meet this cool guy who loves music. His fave song to play is hallelujah so we asked him to play it for us. So he did! It was awesome and we had a cool conversation about God and talents. We also are starting to see some people we already know on campus. It's a test to try to remember their names without them realizing you forgot it haha.. But it's been fun. One dude is in a photo class and every time he sees us he asks to take pics of us to use for his class. Who knows what he does with them, but we make sure he can see our name tags so he kinda spreads the gospel that way. We're not sure how interested he is, but we are praying to find him again to share more about what we do and hopefully get him baptized and stuff ;).

That's about it for highlights on investigators this week. Now on to more happenings! Tuesday we had interviews with President Daines! Him and Sister Daines came to our apartments and we had the interviews in our extra room. It was kinda funny cause I was just in socks and we were in the apartment, but it was such a cool experience. President Daines is so inspired and knows exactly how to help me and the people in Athens!
Wednesday we walked with a man to family history night. He doesn't have a car and didn't come last time, so we decided to walk with him. He hasn't been to church in probably centuries (hahah) and he says this is as close as he's getting to the church for now. But he went to family history and love love loved it. He says he will come every week!! He's opening back up to the gospel :)

There's a lady in our ward who has pneumonia (actually we know like 6 people who have pneumonia in The Plains, what's up with that?!). We offered to help out with anything and she asked us to mow her lawn. Hahahahahahahahaha we did it Friday night in the dark (literally the only time we had time). We had to use a flashlight. Now the funniest part... Her house is on a HILL. Like maybe even a cliff. Jk not that bad but it was seriously insanely steep. Her and her husband (he's in a wheelchair so he can't do it either) just sat on their porch and laughed the whole time. We put on quite the show!! For people who have been to Nauvoo, it was even steeper than the pageant stage. Lol image shoving an old old huge lawn mower across and up this massive hill.. Haha fun times. 

We just went hiking for pday! Haha "hiking". There's a pretty trail called the ridges that goes to radar hill. We've heard tons about how cool and kinda tough it is. We got up to the top in 15 mins... But it was super pretty up top! Pictures will be included. I miss mountains, but this is as close as I will get for 18 months.. So I'll take it!!

Well, it's definitely fall in Ohio! leaves keep changing and it's getting colder. I already had to whip out my tights lol. Our apartment has been freezing and we checked the thermostat and it was 63 degrees! COLD. we had to turn on the heat today :'(. Humid cold is going to kill me. But apparently there's not much, if any, snow until like January. Then there's only ever like 2 inches around. So that's a relief. But it'll just be cold :(. We usually run in the mornings, and the last few days I've been able to see my breath. Pray I don't turn into a Popsicle soon.

Love you all!!
Sister Barnes

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