I couldn't think of a subject line. And WELCH is based off of this short, hilarious experience:
Elder Magleby and I went into Burger King on a depressing night of finding people all night. But we didn't really find anybody, so after a good 2 hours of work in North Newark we went to drown our sorrows in bacon hamburgers and fries. So we order and as we're waiting for our food, there's this old black guy wearing jeans and a baseball cap that walks in, walks over to the soda fountain and starts willing up an old bottle of Welches grape jelly wrapped in a plastic bag. It was HUGE too probbaly like a 32 ounce bottle. Anyway, he fills it up, mumbles something under his breath, and walks out without another word. Newark is awesome.
So we had training this week on Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 am to 4 pm. It was really great. Towards the end, President Jeppson (who is a patriarch as well, (it's one of those positions that stays with you forever, like a bishop)) basically gave us all a blessing as he bore his testimony. It's incredible to hear him speak and then hear a literal change in his speech as he pronounces blessings on the heads of us missionaries. Mission Presidents have so much divine power, it's amazing.
I used to hate role plays but NOW after doing literally 500 over those two days, I can appreciate them more. They're really good opportunites to work out kinks in your lessons and receive revelation too. I got some sweet ideas from various missionaries that I worked with. ALSO, I got to hang out with Elder Romrell, one of my MTC companions (he got put with me and Elder Waite when his companion went home).
It's weird because Elder Romrell, Elder Waite and I are the only New Jersey missionaries left from our MTC district. Everybody else has gone home due to depression/health problems. Super sad. Hopefully they'll be coming back out soon but it's still gives me heavy boots.
This week we only taught 17 lessons. Boo! But that was partly because Tuesday and Wednesday got destroyed due to training.
But we found two new investigators this week. One guy named Tony, a peruvian that we met on the streets. He was great because we just talked about the churches and if there was one true church and whatnot. So he basically set up the return appt himself, which hardly ever happens because people usually aren't interested. The other person was Vanessa, from Uruguay. She has two sons and 3 step children. She's probaly only like 35 or so too. She was super great and listened to our message and her son Lucas who's like 9, has long beautiful brown hair. I'm jealous. When I got home, you all better believe that I'm growing my hair out again. And a lush beard as well.... moving on.
Going back to the training really quick: the biggest things I learned are the following:
1. Be quiet.
2. Slow down.
3. Listen to the spirit.
YOU ALL KNOW ME. I love to talk and communicate with people and just be their friend. But the problem is, is I talk TOO much and don't the spirit room to come and and speak for us. Elder Magldby is cool, collective and reserved. I'm trying to be like that, and it's incredibly how much I've calmed down these past weeks, JUST FROM listening to eh spirit more. I love it. They say every companionship is a trio: You, companion, Holy Ghost. It's a wonderful feeling when you know that and when you use the Holy Ghost as the tool that God has given us.
My spanish is coming along. Elder Magleby has good spanish, but he speaks like a total gringo. So I've already noticed my accent is going a little downhill. OH. COOL thing: I've been told that I look Puerto Rican and Italian so far. We'll see what else comes next.
I'm going to the ZOO today in South Orange, (WHERE GARDEN STATE WAS FILMED). I'm stoked.
For everybody that wrote me, I probbaly won't have time today. But I'll try to post some photos so Matthew can post them on my blog.
Tanner: got your letter,. IT WAS AWESOME.
Chris: wrote you back.
Hayley" WRITE ME.
Bayley: I'm sorry I'm the worst at writing you. I'll try to get you next week.
FAMILY: I'll try really hard to write you all next week.
ELDER Niels Christensen
ps - Indian Bro. Jackson, from the english ward is cooking a rich french meal for me and Elder Magleby this Sunday. I'll send pics. Also, he's awesome and printed off lyrics for me for "On the Floor (brandon Flowers) and "I'll Fly Away" (Allison Krauss and Gillian Welch). SO I'm going to sing them for other missionaries and it will be grand.