Monday, July 6, 2015

Last Week in Durham

June 22, 2015

Good morning!

It's been another hot week here. North Carolina is setting records right now! Sometimes I look at the temperature gauge in the car and I think to myself "oh it's probably just because the car has been in the sun." And then the temperature doesn't drop after 20 minutes of driving. Yep! It's hot! It hasn't been under 95 for like two weeks.

So this was my last week in Durham. It's hard to believe I'm already getting transferred, but I guess the Lord has other things for me to do. Being district leader will definitely be something new and interesting.

After 4.5 months here, I can truly look back and see the good that I've done. Even though I didn't baptize, I can definitely say that the area is much better than it was when I got here. When I got here, there was no member trust, no progressing investigators, no branch activities, and my companion was slightly distraught about some things. But now I look back and I see that member trust is sky high, we have many people that are progressing toward baptism, the branch is now independent of any other ward, and Elder Teeples will definitely have his work cut out for him. Hopefully I get transferred close enough so I can come back for the baptisms he'll have.

But even more than just what I was able to do, I was able to learn many things as well. My understanding of the Atonement of Christ as increased exponentially. And although I don't quite understand it perfectly, I feel that I understand it well enough to be able to help my investigators progress in the Gospel. That is the central focus of the Gospel after all. It's all about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The purpose of the church is for us to be able to come forth and take advantage of the blessings offered to us through Christ's sacrifice. It's up to us to actually apply it. That's the hard part for me. I know that the Atonement is activated through our faith, prayers, diligent scripture study, and putting our best effort in, but sometimes it's just so hard to actually let all that in. It takes time and humility. We have to open our hearts so that He can actually help us. I'm still working on that. I'll let you know how it goes.

Something else I've learned here is how to ride a bike. I don't mean just get on the bike and pedal. I mean get on there and destroy every hill that comes my way. I remember climbing up the biggest hill in our area and just destroying this road biker in front of me. I felt pretty good about myself. And I can probably go up that hill even faster now. I'm definitely looking forward to biking when I get home.

I'm really looking forward to wherever my next area is. Rumor is I'm going back to Clinton, but we'll see what happens. I find out tomorrow at transfers.

Well, that was the week. It was hot for sure.

Have a good one,

Elder Landon Carroll

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