Monday, July 25, 2011

Hello from the South!

Hey Everyone!                                                      July 18, 2011

I thought I'd let you know that I'm well and my heart is still beating - haha! Actually, Lawrenceville is an awesome place. My companion E. Zollinger is awesome. He's this really big guy - went to state I think for wrestling and coached it too. He was also a major football player getting a scholorship to college. He's awesome. He loves the people and has an innocent attitude about him which is really nice seeing as how I've been trying to return to that mindset and to be more humble lately.

I'm sorry for not writing any hand written letters lately. I've got a lot of stuff on my hands. Apparently E. Zollinger's trainer didn't do all he could so I'm having to work with more on my plate. Actually, I'm just trying to get him to talk and have his own set of opinions - so I understand where he's coming from.

I'm trying to give him the chance to make his own choices and I'm going to be on the side to help correct and supervise. It's all because of all of you (my whole family), some good parents who have that rock solid faith and sisters who have incredible work ethics. I have been lacking as to the work ethic part of life so I've been really looking towards you sisters for your awesome examples. Y'all are awesome! Any advice and correction would be great from any of you. I LOVE YOU ALL!

My callings in the single's branch also helped me learn to manage and administrate in my surroundings and how to work with people. That's also really something that has helped me open up since I used to deal with depression and anxiety. Being on my mission with all of those experiences has helped me learn to cope without any meds.

As far as where I'm at now, things are going well. This last Sunday, we were suppose to have Elder Bednar speak at our branch but he got called to do some official business in my first area of Midlothian. We've also been helping members recently with cleaning out their house, so it's been an adventure.

Lately, I took my companion to the Projects of our area and he was truly terrified! I kept a cool attitude and told him I was there for him and that we would be fine. Yeah, it's a sketchy place sometimes but there are usually the best conversations in the Projects amongst those that are truly humbled. Not to mention I got a hug from a little kid for giving him a "Jesus card" and plus we've got a lot of potential in the Projects with some who are reading the Book of Mormon and who also have computers I'll fix for nothing! So I'm putting the skills to use that I can at the moment and I'm also training my 'step-boy' how to understand ethnics (sp????) so it's a blast!

Our branch is really great too! It's small but feels more like home because it has that same architecture as the rest of the Church - so it's sweet! All of the active members are great! They give us food when we need it and always love to hear from us.

We do tend to stand out here a bit. We're the only white "Jesus boys" in town and where we reside. So it's fun and interesting at the same time - especially when I wink at some people and they get this weird look on their face.....but it's all good......because we've got the tags on and carry all sorts of religious stuff! haha!

Recently, we chased down an investigator and gave him a church tour and he loved it! He wants to get baptized really soon and "change his life" so things are going really well. We hope to have some baptisms here really soon.

I'm so glad to hear that everyone is doing so well and that Amanda (yes you!) are doing great! I hope to get some personal letters out to everyone soon - but I have a ton on my plate for now but I will try to get to it.

I hope to hear from everyone soon and just FYI memorizing scripture really helps with taking up space instead of bad thoughts and helps my mood. Deuteronomy 31:6 is really good for support!

I love you all and remember...I LOOK TO ALL OF YOU and my Savior.

E. Richards

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