Monday, March 21, 2016

Week 8 In the Field

Hey errbody what's good? Thanks for having the desire to know what's hapnin' in the ole' Tennessee Knoxville mission. This week felt like the longest week ever and I’m so happy it's over. Here in Tennessee it's blooming and yeah, we all know what that means: Allergies. Oh man, it feels like a feather is tickling your nose 24/7. But as much as allergies suck, we still got work done and had some good experiences. WE HAD A BAPTISM!
On Tuesday we rode our bikes into downtown Knoxville, around UT campus. The church has a new initiative called #Hallelujah. There is a video y'all can check out on YouTube or the church website. The point of this initiative is to remember the true meaning of Easter.
As much as the Easter bunny, peeps, and finding the golden egg is cool, it's not the point of Easter. Let's not get too pagan. It's a time to remember Christ and his atoning sacrifice and how he is ALIVE...not DEAD.
Elder Kuhnen enjoying the view.
Oh and also can we show a little appreciation for the Passover? A Jewish convert to the church was talking to us about how nobody really recognizes Passover anymore. I thought about it and I realized that yeah, we don't really talk about it anymore. Most congregations won't assign speakers on it. This Jewish convert said that Passover is one of the most significant events for the children of Israel!  It was such a blessing to be allowed to leave Egypt and God commanded them to remember what he had done for him.

In the Bible dictionary it states," Jesus, being the Lamb of God, was crucified at Passover time and is the true Passover (see 1 Cor. 5:7). He was raised from the grave on the third day thereafter. It thus became a springtime anniversary and has come to be called Easter in the Christian world."  While Jesus is the ultimate sacrifice and allows us to not "spiritually die", we have to remember it was by Heavenly Father's will and plan that it was so. So this Easter season I'd challenge you all to think about how Heavenly Father has blessed your life. Think about it and then thank him for it. For me, I think about how I got were I am today, and my experiences and opportunities for progression. But that's me, what do you guys appreciate most from Heavenly Father? 

Tre, if you read this: Bars. 

Wednesday was so L-O-N-G. We had a meeting with all the new missionaries and the mission president and talked for what seemed like an eternity. President Griffin talked about Julius Caesar and how he conquered part of England by burning his ships so his soldiers could not retreat and escape. They then fought harder because it was fight or die.

For missionaries, we need to burn distractions, not you guys (tonight's. loyal. fans......Comedy Sportz....anyone?) but things that distract us during the week from working. Like exploring Walgreens and going to stores, or trying to recite word for word Dave Chappell's hour long specials. It was a good day, just too long and too hot. It was 70 degrees but feels like 100 and you sweat non-stop. Mom, I need some short sleeve shirts. Could you order me some online? Please? 

Thursday: my companion was super sick and we went to the doctor and got him squared away. We stayed home so he could sleep and recover. A member brought us pizza and that's all that was exciting about the day. 

Friday was sort of the same, but with a really cool experience. We had walked to Walgreens so we could go get our prescriptions filled and on our way back we found somebody to teach. Well, actually he found us. His name is Rod, and he's cool. Rod was driving along cruising in his shiny blue BMW and saw us. He honked a few times times and kept driving, a few moments later, he decided to turn around and see if we needed a ride anywhere. We needed to get home so we rode with him. We asked him what ward he's from, and he said," What’s a ward?" Well turns out he's not a member. He has had missionaries before and really liked them. He also just won $6,000 from the lottery. But really when you think about it, he double won the lottery...by finding the missionaries, I mean COME ON! It doesn't get much better than that. Anyway, he texted us after he dropped us off that he wants to grab lunch sometime and take the lessons. We'll help him humble up his wallet and his soul. I'm making him sound like a snob, but he's actually a really cool and nice dude.
 
Elder Beard and Tab on Saturday.
Saturday we had a baptism! The guy's name is Tab. He's 53 and feels like he's 22 in spirit. He was taught by the sisters in South Knoxville, but he asked Elder Beard to baptize him. It was cool being at his baptism, he bore his testimony which included that the Book of Mormon was written for him and he'll let anyone read it, but it's written for him. He's a big jokester. After his baptism he told everyone he wants to speed up everything and just go through the temple already. Super cool guy, and boy, he soaks up information real fast. 

On Sunday, I got to be in the circle when he was confirmed a member of the church and received the gift of the Holy Ghost. It was a really good experience for him and me. I've given priesthood blessings before, but it's a whole different feeling to help perform ordinances before that last forever. Unless a person is excommunicated or removes their name from the church, the Holy Ghost will always be with a baptized member. It goes away when we use our agency incorrectly, and can be absolutely dormant for any period of time if we consistently make bad choices and don't repent. But it never fully leaves. When we make a correct choice, and begin to repent, the Holy Ghost comes back, and we will recognize the difference as time goes on when we choose to make more righteous choices and continue to humble ourselves and repent. Ned came to church, and was in a super good mood. He was answering every question in Elders Quorum and walked outta church literally dancing. Pray he can overcome smoking and get baptized. 


Well that's all for this week, today is P-day and I'm throwing on a pair of fake Kobe shoes (courtesy of Cache Fields) and going to town.


Hope y'all have a good week! 

Elder Kuhnen
The Great Tennessee Knoxville Mission


Quotes: 

"Hey bro. Strub, you wanna hit up the Masonic temple over there?" -Scott "Oooooooo secret combinations...I think I'll pass." -Sebastian Strub (Tuesday night basketball) 
"Protestant churches don't preach the whole holy pizza." -Tab Allison (bearing testimony at his baptism) 

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