July 23, 2013
So the verdict is final. I got confirmation of my visa extension! I am now officially allowed to stay in Australia until 22 December 2013, so that means I will be coming home 3 December 2013. Looks like I'll be home for Christmas. Although I really wanted to extend, and that's what I decided to do, it never felt quite real. It looked possible but I never had that feeling that it was actually going to happen so now that I found out about this, it just confirms those feelings. It's just good to know for sure what will happen. Friday night we got to help prepare food for the dinner with all the stake presidents and the member of the 70 and it was pretty fun. I had this waist down apron on and I really looked like a waiter. They all told me I looked really good as a waiter and that they would recommend me to anyone to work for them. I think when I get home I will look for a job as a waiter, probably at the Outback Steakhouse, I will just use my Australian accent and entertain everyone hahaha my accent is acutally pretty dang good. 80% of people here don't even know that I am American. Heaps of people think that I am just an Aussie or from New Zealand it's sweet as. I reckon being a waiter would be fun and I could get heaps of tips and I might even meet my wife, who knows??? Anyway.. enough of this waiter business, it might just be a phase. I go through a lot of phases. Phases are fun, they keep life interesting :)
I'll share a cool experience from this weekend. We went to invite some people to church Sunday morning a family which the kids were baptised but not yet the parents. When we knocked, the young girl Sophie answered the door and immediately said, my friend Whitney is coming the church with us today, she slept over! It was pretty cool, and so because Whitney would be with strangers all day, Sophies mom Brook came to church as well. (She probably wouldn't have come if Whitney wasn't there). At church, Brook was welcomed warmly. It's been a few weeks since she last came. In gospel principles, the lesson was on baptism and the members that were in the class were a mom and her daughter. The daughter was older and married now but they shared their conversion experience about how the kids were baptised first and then the mom later. I could go into more detail but the experience they shared related EXACTLY to Brook. I think it really hit her. I hope she has her eyes opened and gives commitment to the gospel so that her family can be blessed.
Nothing I can really think of to say at the family reunion other than to follow the prophet. The most important thing we can do is follow the council of the prophets and the apostles and everything will be ok. You can also let everyone know that I am well and that I love my mission. :)
Well, I think that's all for this week. BUSY, BUSY, BUSY, BUSY, BUSY, BUSY, BUSY week ahead. Can't stress that enough! Transfers and Mission Leadership council. Then planning for a recent convert fireside the next week. All while I have a new companion and a new mission president. This is the biggest intake the mission has ever seen by far. about 4 times as many missionaries as we have ever gotten. The wave has finally hit Sydney! We have 30 new missionaries coming in. Then in a few months we have 46 more coming. SPLASH! haha what a great thing to see! :) Bring it on!!!
Love, Elder Thompson
PS) Please pray especially hard for me, I need the Lord's help as much as possible! Can't do it without him :)