Thursday, November 6, 2014

Warnings From Outer Space - October 5, 2014

I'll explain the title of this email later, but hopefully for now I have you attention before I tell you about another week in the California Irvine mission....
   Transfers: Elder Ballif and Thayer are gone, I thought it was funny they were both my former companions. Elder King and I stayed together, which I am very glad to have him as my last companion or hospice elder since he is taking care of a dying missionary (just what they call you in your last transfer.) But as I stated before I'm doing my best to go out with my boots on. We did get a 3rd comp, Elder Bartell from Idaho Falls - he is a funny guy.  It was nice to see Elder Mackey and hear his last testimony, he is already well missed here.
     Saturday I got to go down to the peninsula to teach the 93yr old mother of one of our members. She was married to a "good Mormon guy" but never seriously investigated the Church until recently and he is long passed. Sweet woman and she may be baptized by the end of the year. Her house was two blocks away from the “wedge”, a popular surfin' point and also the exit for the Newport harbor. We stopped for pictures and contacted a couple people, even some members from Texas.
     Also it rained here for the first time in 8 months, which not only was an answer to many prayers, but brought the chill of November to the air. I put my trench coat on for a minute (somehow I now have 2), but it was ok, by noon it was sunny and warm again....California is rough I tell you, are you sure you want to come here? 
   For Halloween the zone got together to play games and watch a movie. I thought that sounded lame so instead I had a member get us "the Best Two Years" so we could watch it with a part-member family. The man is a recent convert and we have been trying to meet more with his wife. He is a super funny (in a good way) guy who helps us a lot, plus feeding us too. It was a great night and both loved the movie, getting better versed how a mission works and the lingo. I thought it was great too now that I have served a mission.
     The ward’s Halloween party was last Friday and was a great event to get not just members out, but less-actives and non-members. We, the missionaries, had to judge the mac'n' cheese and chili cook off. It was hard eating with our mustaches on but we got it done. One of my favorite families came and their daughters came as Anna and Elsa (these are the same girls I drew Frozen for.)
  The library here for some reason attracts some real crazies. Some may just be homeless, but others are a strange crew indeed. One was talking to me about how she landed spaceships in Palm Springs, and is here to save the world from alcohol and tobacco. There have even been some less actives who have also had some "close-encounters" or believe in witchcraft and what have you. Anyway through all the stories of aliens warning us about the evils I remembered a talk I saw once by President N. Eldon Tanner called "warnings from outer space." We made mention to an astronomer who thought some far off civilization was trying to reach out to us and warn us of self-destruction, then related it to how in reality our Father in Heaven who is "above the earth" warns us of the things we do (even alcohol and tobacco.) 
   It’s a rather roundabout way of saying it, but I tried to look at some positive in it, thank goodness for modern and continuous revelation...even the personal kind which helps guide our life, but also keep it grounded and understood. Anywho I just keep on moving on, making every moment count and "enjoying every sandwich."
  Love you all forever,
             Elder Steven Taylor Ray
Elder Mackey and Elder Ray and the transfer meeting

Newport Harbor

Newport Harbor

Newport District Transfers

Winter in Southern California

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