Sunday, January 10, 2016

December 28, 2015 - Joshua, Texas

Just after Christmas in Joshua

Dear Family,

It was good to talk to you on Skype a few days ago even though you couldn't see me half the time. I still looked the same the rest of the time, no worries. I've been dying to share at least a few quotes in their original Texan twang for a while so I was happy to do that. I'm also really sorry that we couldn't discuss "The Full Story of Christmas" after I read it. I sent it to you with all the references and everything so feel free to share it with anyone and everyone. I'll never forget that devotional when I first heard it, so I hope you felt the same way. If I had more time after I would have asked what you felt when I read it and why you think there was so much before Christ's birth and not as much after. So, you can ponder those this week.

The rest of Christmas Day was spent mostly doing service and such. Actually, before we even went to Skype, we stopped by a member nearby and gave him a gift (cookies and a large sum of money) from another family in the ward. The family told us to deliver it to whomever we felt needed it most. During our visit, the member mentioned that he was waiting on a check and that he only had enough money and food for a week. He was completely humble about it and said he'd be alright but we were glad we chose him for the gift. It was a cool experience.

After Skyping, we went with the Burleson Elders and held some bingo games at the local retirement home. We were only there for a few games and it was going pretty slow but apparently after we left, it really heated up. The Burleson Elders said there was this one lady with four cards going that was just dominating. Definitely was a memorable experience.

For Christmas dinner we went to the Hansons and had salmon and such. They wanted to give it more of a Jerusalem feel and it actually turned out quite well, I enjoyed it. They're an awesome family so I was glad to spend some time with them and share a Christmas message. They actually had us back again yesterday because our other dinner appointment fell through. They're just one of those families that are always looking out for us.

Christmas Eve was pretty great too. We started with some planning which was extremely difficult to focus on, but we got a little bit done. Our dinner appointment was, once again, awesome. We had steak and baked potatoes which I've been waiting for since I got here. The family also had some kids our age which is nice once in a while. We don't have a whole lot of those in Joshua. It's just nice to be able to relate to people a little more sometimes and you don't get that often here. After dinner we went and taught our investigator a short lesson. He's progressing pretty well so it definitely made the night a little better.

The rest of the week was pretty uneventful so I won't bore you with it. Overall, it was a good Christmas and a good week. I'm glad ya'll enjoyed your Christmases too. It's always a nice time of year and it's even better on a mission. I hope you enjoy New Years as well and I'll talk to you next week!

Elder O'Brien (the younger)

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