Monday, February 29, 2016

Snake Handlers and Zone Conference

Dear friends and family,

This week has been super crazy and really short as well! The days keep flying by, but we are still busy everyday! I guess time doesn't really work out in the field! Here is the weekly rundown!

Monday: We were in Huntsville to have P-Day with the zone so we emailed at the college and then went to the Stake center to play some sports! I was pumped to play some gator ball or basketball or something that will get my energy out! Instead we get there and everyone is playing volleyball... Now don't get me wrong volleyball is fun and all, but after having a week of only lifting weights and not running around I was looking forward to a sport that required a lot of running around and such. After the volleyball net and stands were put away, everyone wanted to play soccer! YES!!! Soo we played soccer and my team won 1-0. I took a straight shot at the goal and went through 2 peeoples legs including the goalie and scored. Indoor soccer is fun, but I like playing on a regular field and having lots of room to kick and run around! After that we drove back to Scottsboro and did some tracting.

Tuesday: Tuesday we had Monte Sano comeover for an exchange! So Elder Farrell and I went tracting across the tracks in Scottsboro and knocked on this dudes door. The first thing I said was "Do you love Jesus?!" He was like heck yea I do come on in boys! So we stepped inside and he started talking about snakes and such. Didn't know where this conversion was going until he was said "You boys ever handle snakes?" I was thinking in the past where I would catch snakes with my friends under rocks and such, but never really handling them. This guy told us he goes to church and handles live rattle snakes with their venom in them and all because they are learning how to "tame" the serpent! He said it was to show our faith in our savior because if you have enough faith, the snake wont bite you. Well when the snake bites you, the guy said you pray that God will save you. So basically these people handle snakes, get bit, lay on the couch and pray and either suffer through the venom surging through their veins until the body fights it off, or they die because their body can't handle the venom. Snake handling is illegal in Alabama and I'm pretty sure in the US as well, but Scottsboro was the first place it was introduced into the US! I know where the church is that practices it as well. Won't be visiting there anytime soon!

Wednesday: This day we had a team up with a member to go and find a new member that just moved into the ward. We spent an hour trying to fin this lady and had no success. After looking at the address on the members phone, we finally found the trailer! We walked up to it in the dark because it was late at night (late around here is like 7-8ish) and knocked on the door. Someone yelled to open the door and come in. So I open the door and this pitbull is sitting there and staring at me. I take one step and it rears back, bears its teeth, and starts to bark at me. I wasn't going in that trailer until the dog was somewhere else! the owner got to the door and said "Sorry I should put her away before she bites you for coming in." Yea I was told to come in, and then had a dog there to warmly greet me. One thing about the South, everyone has a dog. Big, small, friendly, vicious, everyone has a dog and they run everywhere! 

Thursday: Thursday we spent the day tracting really. I can't remember much about what happened on that day.

Friday: This was zone conference! We had an awesome training by President Hanks and President Nolan! We played a Preach my Gospel Jeopardy and my team just scored two points and we got a bonus question. The question was what does someone have when they do not have the Holy Ghost confirmed on them. My team didn't know what it was called, but I remember Elder Cannon and I talking about this subject the day before. It is the light of Christ! So we got 3 points instead of two. Go me that was the only point I got for my team haha! 

Saturday: Saturday we spent the day tracting and just talking to people. Nothing really interesting happened!

Sunday: We had church and as always it was good! After church we had lunch with a member and they made the best cornbread ever! Then Elder Cannon and I went tracting and ran into a Church of Christ couple. Basically it went from me reading a scripture in john into a sort of argument about doctrine between all of us. We weren't trying to argue with them, but they kept trying to pull up scriptures to prove we were wrong in our ways. All of the scriptures I could back up, but they refused to accept it. So we ended the conversion on a high note and talked about Jesus. When in doubt, talk about Jesus or say Roll Tide. Either will get you out of any situation!

That was the week! Tomorrow is supposed to be a very stormy day. Sharknado probably will happen haha! Love and miss y'all! If you have time, shoot an email or write a letter!


Elder Muhlestein

Monday, February 22, 2016

Weird Doctrine, funny stories!

Dear Family and Friends,

This week was a weird one I ain't gonna lie! We have had this investigator who has asked us some weird questions about what we believe and what other believe and just goes from one topic to another like that! 

Monday: We got done emailing and it was pouring rain, so we really didn't do much that day because when it rains in Scottsboro, you are literally stuck inside because there is nothing to do. A member texted us and said she had tacos and got way to many so she wanted to give us some! So she came to the church with her boyfriend and gave us tacos. Now when someone gives me free food and i trust the person, I wont ask questions and eat, so thats what I did. Later the member told me, after finishing all the tacos she gave my companion and I that the meat inside the taco was cow tongue.... It wasn't bad, but at the same time it was nasty too. So next time she brings us food, Im making sure that there isn't any cow tongue in it! 

Tuesday: We had a lesson planned for our investigator, but she cancelled on us which was a bummer. We did a lot of tracting that day and some success in getting into people's homes to teach them! 

Wednesday: Wednesday we did tracting mainly and met a lady we later taught during the week! Nothing exciting that day!

Thursday: We visited the lady we met the other day and taught her the plan of salvation! She was very interested in the lesson because she lost her husband last year. We did more tracting and just went around talking to people! We had Monte Sano and Byrd Springs ZL's stay over for the night because we had district meeting the next day!

Friday: We had district meeting and had a bunch of people there! Usually its Fort Payne, Monte Sano, and Scottsboro. This week is was all of the ones I already stated and Byrd Springs ZL's and Byrd Springs STL's. So we had a good district meeting and celebrated Elder Farrel's birthday! We had cheese cake and oreos and such! It was a fun little birthday party! After district meeting we did some tracting and then went to dinner at a members house!

Saturday:This was the weird doctrine day. So Elder Cannon and I made a return appointment with this one dude and went back to see him. Little did we know that this guy used to be a preacher. We gave him a Book of Mormon and he asked why he needs another book to understand the bible and stuff. We told him how the Book of Mormon is a companion to the Bible, and then he pulled out another book that wasn't from the bible and said he reads this book to understand the bible. I was like dude you just said you didn't need a book to understand the bible, yet you bring out this book that isn't even from the bible or the word of the Lord and try to throw this on us! So we put that aside and then started talking about baptism. This is were this man tried to tell us the John 3:5 was about being born. Like literally being born from your mother. He told us
Nichadeamus asked Jesus what it meant to be born again. A man cannot enter his mother's womb twice. So Jesus said a man must be born or water and the spirit to enter the kingdom of god. You would have to look up the real scriptures I don't have my bible with me so don't take this for the literal scriptures. So I was thinking if this dude took this verse as literal as Matthew 26:26, then he must believe Jesus's body was made of bread! You would have to look up the scriptures to read about it. I believe it is Matthew 26:26 I am not sure though. So that was fun! And then he tried to tell us that the Book of Mormon was a new version of the new testament. We made him read the first chapter and he understood that it wasn't a new version. He was a really nice guy, but had some weird thoughts about the bible and such!

Sunday: We had church and it was good! We visited with some less actives and had dinner a member brought to us! We drove to Monte Sano to spend the night for P-Day today!

Well that was the weekly run down! Other fun news is tornado season starts next week and runs until may! Hope we don't get one anytime soon! I love and miss all y'all!. Have a safe awesome week!


Elder Muhlestein

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Santa's got some GUNS!

So I am sending this email again because apparently the email server crashed and the email I sent before could have not reached some people. We got permission from the AP's to re-send our weekly email and other emails home. Sorry for those who got this email twice!

Dear Family and Friends,

This week was awesome! Elder Cannon and I worked hard and accomplished a lot! We had an amazing week with some pretty weird and funny stories as well!

Monday: P-Day! after emailing we tried fishing, but it was super cold and gave up cause it was also getting dark. We then were going to contact a referral we got, but the guy who gave us his number gave us a fake number, so we couldn't meet him. I hate it when people do that!

Tuesday: Tuesday was pretty cold! There was a huge cold front that swept the south and had temperatures drop into the teens at night and low 30's-high 20's for the day! So we did tracting and froze! So we basically spent the whole day tracting and then it got dark. We started to walk back from our apartment when low and behold the police showed up again! They said they were looking for a man in a brown toboggan. I knew someone called the cops on us again for preaching the word! So we said no we haven't seen any dude walking around. the cop offered us a ride back to our apartment which was awesome! So yea, I rode in the back of a cops car while on my mission #thugmormon. 

Wednesday: Wednesday we did a lot of tracting again and it was still cold! We had some success in teaching people, but it wasn't the best day! We finished with mutual and watched an amazing face to face with Elder Razband or Rasband I don't know how to spell his name! It was awesome!

Thursday: We had zone training and this time I wasn't high! Back story on that: Last time there was zone training I had surgery on my foot and they gave me strong pain meds so I was gone in my own little world while zone training was going on! But this time I wasn't! It was an awesome training and I learned a lot from it! Right after it, the elders went to Buffalo Wilds Wings. Some elders got the hottest wings available and once they ate them, they all started to sweat and cry! It was so funny! then we had an exchange with the Monte Sano elders! Elder Larsen and I went tracting and knocked on a door and this dude who looked like santa answered! I kid you not he was the spitting image of santa! Only problem was he was holding a giant .45cal pistol and wondering who the heck we were! Once we said the missionaries, he put his gun away, smiled, and let us in to teach him! He turned out to be an awesome guy and had like over 15 guns just laying around everywhere!

Friday: Friday we did tracting and met a baptist dude that wanted to debate with us about why the trinity was the godhead. He used google as a reliable source and the website he used contradicted itself like 5 times, We tried to teach him, but he was looking for a bash. So we left!

Saturday: Saturday was good! We did a lot of tracting again and talked to a lot of people! We also got locked out of our apartment which was embarrassing and fun! That was the high light really of that day!

Sumday: We had church and it was good! We did tracting and didn't have success until the very end where we met this family that was amazing! They let us in their home and we taught them and they said they might come to church with us! so that was exciting!

Well there was the week! I hope everyone is doing well and being safe! I love and miss all of y'all! If you ever get a chance, shoot an email or write a letter! I will be more than happy to reply back! Stay safe and warm!


Elder Muhlestein

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Better Late than Never!!

Sorry All!  I was on vacation all last week so Ethan's post is one week late!!

What is up family and friends?!?!

First off, I have one little request from all yall! Please please PLEASE if you have any pictures of you and me at all, send them via email to me! I need a lot of pictures for my desk to make planners and such and just for memories to show other missionaries! If yall could do that, that would be awesome! Here was the week!
Monday: This was the last P-Day with Elder Park! We stayed in Monte Sano that night, so we played Gator ball and emailed and then drove back home.

Tuesday: We did some tracting that day, but most of the day was spent saying goodbye to people for Elder Park. It was a little sad seeing my trainer go, but I guess new people await to be comps with!

Wednesday: We woke up at 6am because we had to drive to Decatur to meet other missionaries and pick up my new companion! So we took our drive and met at the church. My companion was coming from Booneville, Mississippi! His name is Elder Cannon and he is from Holiday Utah! Fun facts about him: He is 6'4 which reminds me of a very certain someone back in Washington/Idaho! You know who you are! We drove to Huntsville, and then I showed Elder Cannon around the town of Scottsboro! The town has nothing in it really! The only cool places are Unclaimed Baggage and Payne's. Then we went to young men's and young women's so Elder Cannon could meet some of the ward!

Thursday: We had district meeting and met the new sisters that came into the Fort Payne area! They are pretty cool! Monte Sano stayed the same elders they were before! After District meeting we went tracting and had no luck.

Friday: We spent most of the day tracting and had a little luck and taught some lessons. We also contacted a referral and this lady told us she wanted to be baptized! It was awesome! So we have to work with her more to help her reach her goal of baptism! We spent the rest of the day tracting and had no luck after that!

Saturday: This was a funny day! so we tracted, and tracted, and tracted and had no luck. We knocked on some guys door and he let us in! He then started to tell me how he has seen the backside of Jesus and how Jesus has gold in his hair and such. It was a little weird to hear this from him, but then what he said next was even weirder! He started to tell me that he has seen a spaceship over Scottsboro and how it watches everyone! He said he could take us to the spaceship so we could see it, but that he would be abducted or something like that because the aliens don't want anyone to know where they are. This dude was a little crazy in my book, but he was really nice as well. So that was the funniest part of my week and the weirdest as well!

Sunday: We had fast and testimony meeting and it was really good! After church we decided to go contact another referral we had and drove out with a member! The girl we were looking for wasn't there, but the dude she lived with was. So I asked for his name and he said it. This guy was another referral we had been looking for about a month!!! It was crazy and awesome! Long story short, we are going back there tonight to teach them! 

Well that was my week! How is everyone doing? Remember to send pictures cause I need them! I love and miss all y'all and hope everyone is doing awesome! Have an amazing week!


Elder Muhlestein

Monday, February 1, 2016

New Companion!

Dear family and friends,

To start off this email, shout out to Kyleigh Wittwer for entering the MTC in Chile! I got an email from her mom today with all the pictures of her flying from St. George today and I want to congratulate her on a huge milestone that will be forever life changing! 

This week was very interesting. Monday after emailing Elder Park and I went fishing and it was awful! We tried the lake where we usually go, but the shore of the lake was frozen... so no fishing there! We went to a members pond, but our rig we were using was too big for the fish. So we left and bought worms because worms always work! Well as soon as we got back to the pond, we opened the container and the worms were all rotten and shriveled up and we couldn't use them. At his point in time we were just kind of done at that point and returned the worms to the store and went home.

Tuesday we went tracting and had some luck. nothing really interesting happened that day. 

Wednesday we had interviews with President Hanks! So we drove to Huntsville and was in Huntsville for a long time because interviews go on for a very long time! They interview was good! I learned how to become a better missionary and how to have more confidence when doing door approaches. For everyone out there who thinks door approaches are easy, try doing them in the south! almost everyone looks at you, looks at your companion and mid sentence cuts you off and says "not interested I am a Christian and believe in Jesus too bye!" And shuts the door! So they thats always fun!

Thursday we did tracting, and visited referrals we got! There was one referral that we received and this lady wanted a bible from us. Almost all the referrals we get, everyone just wants the free bible and don't want too talk to us. She wanted a bible for her nephew, so we got the address of her nephew and went over to her nephews house! We ended up with two new investigators! It was awesome!

Friday was the interesting day. Elder Park and I were tracting and we knocked on this ladies door. Well this lady opened the door and was behind it. I didn't know why until she said she wasn't dressed! I was wondering why the heck she was even opening the door in the first place if she wasn't even wearing the proper clothing to begin with! So that was super weird! 

Saturday was just a normal day of tracting. We got the call for transfers though. Elder Park is going to the most southern part of the mission which is Greenville Alabama! I am staying in Scottsboro and I will be having Elder Cannon as my new companion! I already know this Elder and he is super awesome! This companionship is gonna be awesome!

Sunday was a normal sunday with church and all! Everyone started to learn that Elder Park was leaving so everyone was sad about that. 

Well that was my week! Wednesday I will be with Elder Cannon and Tuesday night will be a strong storm that could bring a tornado so thats always fun as well! That was just for you mom! If yall are bored, shoot me an email! I miss and love yall and can't wait for what happens this week!


Elder Muhlestein