Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Goodbye to President & Sister Cottle and another Kestner has been Called to Serve!!

Elder Kestner, President  & Sister Cottle
Dear Family and Friends,

Last Tuesday we met with President and Sister Cottle for the last time. He addressed us in the Tifton West Zone. It is sad to see him go and he has made a tremendous impact on my mission and life so far. But we will be welcoming President and Sister Grayson this week on Friday. It is indeed a different feeling that President and Sister Cottle are leaving, but they served with honor and they will be missed dearly.

As the other part of the title suggests, there is another Kestner called to serve. My younger brother Ben, was called to serve in the Arizona Gilbert Mission. He reports August 3rd. It's a whole other thing that he will be serving in the Lord's vineyard along with me. I am about to hit 15 months and will miss him by 8 months when he leaves. I have utmost confidence in him as he prepares to leave.

This week had a few ups and downs. My bike was 'misbehaving' on Tuesday. I was able to clean the chain and lubricate it pretty good to get the grinding noise to lower. In addition to that, the wire that controls my large gears frayed and I had to get it replaced. Chris came over Tuesday night to take a look at it. One of the maintenance guys, Andy was out and he took a look at it as well. It was beyond our skills and know-how to fix. So, Chris picked us up the next morning and took us to the bike shop to get it fixed. Chris then dropped us off at the library for some referral management time. After that we walked home for lunch. We then spent the day trying some referrals. We then headed to try Tracy, who was a referral that requested a Bible. We were able to meet her just as we were walking away from her door! We had a brief visit on her front porch. She had recently moved to Albany and felt alone from her previous church and was looking for a new one. She told us that she felt she had to go to Albany for something. We gave her a Restoration pamphlet, a Bible, and a Book of Mormon. She told us she wants to learn more. It then got close to where Ralph would take us to dinner with the Gaugs. After dinner we had Book of Mormon class.

Now Thursday and sore. We walked for a couple hours and people kept asking us where our bikes were. Which tells us that we are being noticed. I mean, who else bikes in a Georgia Summer with slacks and a white shirt and tie. Elders do!! We tried some more referrals without much success. By about mid-afternoon our legs were stiff and sore. We were almost praying to get back on our bikes but mine was still in the shop. After a few hours we were back in the general vicinity near our apartment when we called the bike shop to check on my bike. It was done! I was overjoyed! We called Chris up and he picked us up shortly after and took us to the bike shop. Before that, he got his trunk door looked at since it jammed the other day. We then got to the bike shop and they only charged $14.23 for everything! I was pretty shocked and they will continue to have missionaries as their customers.
We got back in time to bike over to our dinner appointment with Sis. Walls at Casa Tapatio, a Mexican Restaurant. It was particularly hot that day, but we were glad to be on bikes again. We got home and neither of us felt too good. 

On Friday we went to an appointment with Tracy and we brought Bro. Anderson along with us. Tracy's friend was there and they received the Restoration lesson well and invited both of them to church on Sunday. Tracy accepted but she did not have a ride. Sis. Isberg would end up taking her. We tagged along with Bro. Anderson for a while and he got us each a Little Caesar's Pizza and took us home. A long day!

Saturday flew by. We helped the Sisters' investigator, Monica move. The Isbergs rented a U-Haul trailer and hauled it to Atlanta. There were some thunderstorms in the evening which slowed us down a bit. 

Sunday came and it was great! Tracy came to Church and enjoyed it! Oddly enough, Sunday School and Relief Society, as the Sisters told it, touched on Heavenly Mother and the Plan of Salvation..... Jumping the gun a wee bit. Tracy will be out of town this week and should be at Church on Sunday. We had dinner with the Daniels family, a recent move-in. We're starting to get more dinners now which is fantastic! There were storms and thunder throughout the evening which did not help.

Well, that's my week. Have a good week y'all!

Elder Alexander Kestner