I’m 19!

Hello Friends and Family!

     Thank you for all the birthday wishes, and letters! I loved reading all the notes from the ward, and thanks for the snacks! I haven’t made the cake yet, because other people have given me treats, including the sisters who left this week. They were sad to go and had a great desire to serve the Lord.
     I’m getting to my main email pretty late today, because I had a lot of emails to respond to; which I’m really grateful for! Thank y’all for the nice emails! It’s great to hear how everyone is doing!
     This week has been pretty crazy and we had a pretty big change here. Since the sisters are leaving a little early, (I won’t go into the details) Elder Staheli and I are serving over the whole Washington area, (which is pretty massive) for at least two weeks until we get new sisters. However, since we are running low on sisters, that might take a while; President Weed really doesn’t know yet. We’ve been doing a lot of praying and working with the members to help us fulfill our duties.
     We had our Christmas party this week! It was really fun! We tried to invite as many investigators as we could, but the branch told us about it pretty late, so there were only a couple from the members. One of the members, Levi Cobbe, is a professional singer and he sang for the party! We have his Christmas album, and he’s really good! Maybe you can look him up. The best part of the party was when a branch member came out dressed as Santa Claus, all Ho-ho-hoing and yelling out to all the primary children; it was really out of character for this member, which was really funny!
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      We are teaching a lady who has a big pit bull on her front yard, who will run right up to you and jump on you. He is really playful and Elder Staheli and I aren’t afraid of dogs, so when people walk by they think we’re crazy for playing with a big, scary-looking pit bull.
      I got to go down to the river front in the sisters area this week and see the boats on the dock lit up with Christmas lights. It was pretty cool! I should have taken pictures.
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      These are pictures of our district from district meeting. The other elders serve in New Bern which is a good drive away.
      Honestly, I’m still trying to be more “serviceable” to others and I feel like I could be doing more for my companion, because so far I’ve been riding on his coattails, to get my feet on the ground. If you can get your hands on Elder Bednar‘s MTC talk, “The Character of Christ” that would be a great message about how we should be like Christ in all our toughest trials and throughout our lives by reaching out to others, “turning out,” when most people would turn in. One experience that’s helped shape me was my first investigator at the MTC.  I went into that lesson really not knowing what to say. We sat there in silence with him for a very long time, and ultimately left feeling unqualified. I needed to realize that the Lord qualifies us for this work) and we simply need to be following the rules and boldly opening our mouth at every opportunity.
       Well, I can’t wait to Skype home for Christmas! Keep sharing the Light of Christ with everyone and #Light the World! 
Love,
Elder Samuel Runyan
Thanks for all the birthday gifts!
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