Monday, February 29, 2016

Week 79 - Does Jenny live here?

What a week! We had some pretty awesome experiences and also some pretty crazy experiences. I will start with the crazy one just to get it out of the way... hehe :)

It was Saturday, and we wanted to visit this less-active named Jenny. We go to the address and find that it is out in the country at the end of a long, muddy driveway. We park and have walked about half way down the driveway when we hear someone call out, "There's no trespassin' here, partner!" I say, "We're looking for Jenny!" to which he replies, "You're lookin' for a butt-whoopin if you don't get off my property!" (plus a few swear words) Elder Cheney and I look at each other and start walking back towards our car. As we walk, I call out, "Does Jenny live here?" That's when we hear him yell, "That's it!"

An angry middle-aged man walks out from behind his house and starts speed-walking/stomping towards us. On his face is the most menacing and threatening expression I have ever seen on anyone. His fists are clenched, and it is apparent that his intention is to do something to us. Elder Cheney and I nervously keep walking, but he isn't slowing down. His eyes are locked on me and as he comes up to me he says, "Looks like you'll be the first one..." I stop walking, put my arms up in surrender, and apologize profusely, the whole time praying in my head and asking God to protect us. I am literally expecting him to punch or strangle me or something. We both stand there staring at each other when Elder Cheney calls from behind me, "We're leaving" to which he says, "Then keep walking."

We start walking to the car, and as we are leaving the driveway he calls out from behind us and says, "Guys, I'm sorry. Just write down in the good ol' book not to come back looking for Jenny! Alright? Have a nice day." and then walks back to his yard. I honestly can't remember the last time I ever felt that scared! You definitely had to be there to understand what it was like. Good story, though! ;)

Sorry if I included too much detail there... haha! Good things happened this week too! We also got to have a great lesson with Roy, our downstairs neighbor who just moved here from South Carolina. He was super solid! He told us that he had promised his dad he would find a church in Effingham, and a few days after he had moved in, we knock on his door to introduce ourselves. The church came to him!! He said he would be baptized and then came to church on Sunday and seemed to really like it. We are so excited for him! We are meeting with him this coming Saturday and will be trying to set a baptism date with him. Pray for Roy!!

It's also funny because he is black, and there are very few black people in Effingham. It doesn't bother him or anything, but he did mention that it was different from South Carolina. The branch did a great job at making him feel welcome, though.

We really are so blessed. I know that God answers prayers. He protected Elder Cheney and I on Saturday and has been rewarding us for our efforts throughout the week. I know that God is our loving Father in Heaven and that he cares about us and loves us with a perfect love we cannot comprehend. I love being a missionary and all I get to learn every single day. I also love all the fun adventures I get to have :) It was a fun week!!

Love, Elder Hayes

Photo 1: about to drive to service!!
Photo 2: braving a harsh winter storm!!

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