I was looking in my drafts folder and found this gem. I post these not to endorse the canvassing program, but to show where I was, and how far I have come. There’s no point in hiding that I was one of those annoying door knockers. But annoying doorknockers are people too, and people can change.
You will notice that my own canvassing stories are noticeably absent until the bitter end. I’m not sure if I just didn’t have any in that time frame, or if it’s because I was struggling in my faith and didn’t want to talk about it.
The thing at the bitter end that is my story, I put a positive slant on it. But the truth is, this would continue to bother me throughout the next semester. This may be why I didn’t publish it 4 years ago.
And so, old canvassing stories.
August 6 2012
Mason— Yesterday was a rough day. My first book was late in the day. I had to do these apartments, and it just looked like so many doors, and I didn’t want to knock on them. My 2nd to last door a guy got a cookbook and I was really surprised because their apartment was really really messy: Pop and beer cans and cigarette butts everywhere. I had an Naturally Gourmet and a 7 Secrets. He decided he liked the 7 Secrets a lot better because there were a lot more recipes.
LaTasha— I thank God for yesterday. It was a hard day for me too. I prayed to get at least one book out In the morning, and God did it at the last door. The phone rang at the same time I was knocking, so I thought she’d answer the phone, but she told me to wait for a bit and I waited. I saw kid stuff outside, so when she got off the phone I handed her a storytime. She said she liked the book, but she didn’t have any money because of having to pay bills. She asked if I could come back, and I told her I couldn’t. she decided to try to scrounge for money, so she told me to wait. I saw her searching everywhere for money. I prayed while The abominable snowman played with the dog, Kipper. The lady came back outside with enough money for a Storytime.
Mason— The other book I got out was when James put The abominable snowman and I on this super long street for 2 hours. I had to comb 2 combs and walk all the way around. In my first comb this Chinese guy came to the door. Usually Chinese people are very nice to me, even if they want nothing. He wasn’t interested in cookbook because his family made Chinese food. Then I showed him Storytime because of kid stuff in garage. He said his son was too young to read, so I showed him My Friend Jesus, and he asked if I was a Christian. When I said yes, he got the moey and we started talking. It was a blessing to meet him.
Sheena— Yesterday those hills were ridiculous. I was getting to my 4th comb, my 4th hill and I saw this lady in a park, and I went over and got to rest and sit with her. She ended up getting a My Friend Jesus, and said that her oldest son who is 3, she’d been thinking of introducing him to Jesus. The family is Catholic and her husband is a pilot in the army, so they’re in Japan, and haven’t found a church. She said MFJ would be exactly what she thought would help. Sometimes we emphasize getting out certain books like the GC, and other books, you’re not as happy about because they’re not as hardcore or whatever. But yesterday the Lord was showing me that every book is important depending on what that person needs at that time.
I also had a last door experience. This lady was trying to push me aside to a later date, but I have had bad experiences with that, so I was not going to let her. She had just had a hip surgery and she was very weak and now was not a good time. I knew she was serious when she said, “give me your address and I’ll mail you a donation.” I told her that if she mailed a donation she wouldn’t get a book. So she decided to take a look at my books. She ended up getting Peace Above the Storm.
Glory– This one house looked like no one lived there, but I knocked anyway and a woman came out. She was on the phone and looked at my books and looked at me and then said “hold on just a moment. I can get one book and then you can go.” She hung up the phone and asked me to come inside. I showed her Lessons of Love. She said it was a really nice book. Then I showed her the cookbook. I showed her Naturally Gourmet. She said they were all really nice. I showed her Peace Above Storm and the dvds. She ended up getting 4 books and since she overdonated I gave her a GC and she gave me 2 muffins.
August 7, 2012
Latasha— I thank God for yesterday. In the morning it was so hard, really hard, and I was praying the whole time and James was praying for me. I was praying to get one book out before lunch, and God did. This lady got a 7 Secrets last year and I told her that we have another cookbook and she said she’d get this one and she asked her daughter for the money. Before the end of the day I went from zero books to 9 books, so the Lord blessed. He was just bringing me people who were interested in a lot of stuff.
I showed the cookbook to this man, and he gave it back to me and he asked if I had anything on healthful cooking. I handed it right back to him and said, “This one.” I told him my testimony about how I lost weight by eating healthier, and he got the cookbook.
I showed a man the cookbook, and I usually don’t do that for old people, especially old men. He invited me in, and showed his wife the cookbook and she was friendly too. They were not looking at the cookbook. I thought they wanted it but they didn’t, they were interested in the kid’s books. The lady got Peace Above the Storm.
Mason—I met a lot of people yesterday who already had our books. We’ve redone territory before and not a lot of people have already had books. It was a blessing to see that our work had been successful last time. Usually we don’t get to see that.
Sheena—I went to an auto parts store and the people at the counter weren’t interested, and he said I could come talk to a lady who would be interested. Just from my past experiences, whenever one person says no and gets another person, the other one says they’re not interested. But this time the lady turns out to be a Christian. She gets a cookbook and Peace Above the Storm. While we’re doing this there was another girl sitting there. As I’m getting ready to go, she says she wants a cookbook too. So I showed it to her and we started talking. The girl writes a check for $20, and I’m waiting for James to come and get me another cookbook, because I’m all out. It turns out the girl is going to a college in Lansing. We made friends, I showed her Lessons of Love, found out she was a Christian, and she took back her check and wrote another one for $5 more so she could get the message book as well.
Glory— In my last house, I entered the screen porch and knocked on the door. There was no response. It started raiinging. I knocked on the door 4 times and no one came out. It was raining so heavily that I just waited inside the screen porch for pickup, and I heard someone walk toward the door. He started talking to me, and I started canvassing. He’s not a Christian, and I don’t know why he got the books, but he did. He let me wait for James in the screen porch. We talked while I waited. I found out he was a fishermen. I thought wow, he is like Peter.
August 8, 2012
Latasha— Yesterday I went to this lady’s house and I met her bushad first, he was outside on the porch. I started canvassing the cookbook and the wife came out of nowhere and she was drinking. He showed her the cookbook and she was like, “you’re not a Jehova’s Witness are you?” I told her no, and she asked who I was. I told her I was Seventh Day Adventist, and she said, “oh I know them.” She started asking me questions and I answered. She asked if we clap and dance and raise their hands. I told her no, we just prayed. She told me that she was Native American, and she told me how she knows the bible and spends time with God every day. She wanted to know why the Sabbath was changed to Sunday. I gave her the the GC and Peace Above the Storm. She said she’d always wanted to be an evangelist but that she had a drinking problem. She also did Marijuana legally. She loved the Lord and wanted to know about the truth, but hasn’t been going to church because she couldn’t find a church up here. She said she’d been waiting for someone to give this too, hold on. She went back inside and brought me a little plastic bag. I thought she was going to give me drugs, because it was in a little plastic bag. Instead it was a diamond from her engagement ring. She said it was real, and I’d given her the books for free (having had donations to cover it) and said, “you mean such a blessing to me that I am going to give you this.” She and her husband are truly seeking.
Mason— Yesterday, I went to this one house. There were two doors, and I went to the one I thought was used more. The dude came out of the back door and asked what was going on. I heard a thump when I rang the doorbell, and when the man came out he said it was because he dropped his cat cause he’d been startled. Normally when I show the GC they just look at it and give it right back. He looked at it and asked how much. I told him, and he just paid for it. He was the first guy that was easy to get a GC out to, at least in the up. I told him I was Seventh Day Adventist, and he said he’s got family that are Adventists. He doesn’t drink or smoke, but he says he wants to get closer to God. He loves to read, and he said he reads 6 to 7 books a week.
Latasha— Glory and Sheena and I were put on the same street. I was going one way and Glory was supposed to meet me. I was walking up to the house, and the father was outside fixing a snowmobile. He was on the phone, so I waited on him, and he was like, “oh you came here last year.” I told him it wasn’t me, but probably somebody else. He said every year he buys a book. He said his son had cancer and was in remission but it could come back. He told me to wait. I had the GC and cookbook in my hand, and as he was going into the house I saw Glory coming out of the house. I asked if he got any books out. He said he’d just sold a GC. I was like, “no!” But it was cool because the husband came out and gave me an extra donation for a cookbook and a D2. He almost had all the books we have.
Sheena—I don’t know if you’ve had someone who’s smoking at the door and you give them the survey which includes stop smoking programs, and they’re just sitting there smoking, and it’s awkward. Yesterday I met a woman who was smoking, and she didn’t have any money though she really liked the books. She said she was interested in the stop smoking program, and asked if I was Mormon or Jehovah’s Witness. I told her no, and she said, “ok good. I haven’t found a church yet but I’ve been to those churches and had bad experiences.” She’s turned off to church but not to the point where she’s shut it out completely. She’s just cautious because of her experiences. She asked if we did the stop smoking program from a biblical perspective. So even ethough she didn’t get any books, that’s the first time I’ve met someone all summer who wanted to stop smoking, and from a biblical perspective. She said she and her husband are both looking for help so I hope the church will put something together for them cause they’re really desirous of quitting.
Glory— So, on this one street, I met only 3 people. I met this lady whose house was so messy, and her life was messed up. I asked her if I could come inside because it was so hot. When I started canvassing she said she was divorced and always babysitting…she had no money. I kept going with my canvass. I asked her if she was a Christian, and she said she was a catholic. I asked if she wanted to learn more about Jesus, and she said yes, so I showed her Man Of Peace, GC, and Peace Above the Storm and Lessons of Love. She got 5 books.
On the last street James put me on, I was running. The lady said that 2 years ago there was a young lady here, and that she got two books from her. I showed her books newly printed and said that this time you can get more books. She said she was a bookaholic, but she just bought a whole lot of books and didn’t have money. I showed her the Peace and Love set, and showed her also Prince of Peace and Storytime. she said she wanted the books for her grandchildren. She overdonated, so I gave her Peace and Love. She was so thankful.
August 9, 2012
Latasha— I thank the Lord for getting me through the ten weeks. Just him walking with me and helping me to have courage when I did my first worship in the morning. I’m not used to being up and talking in front of people. I thank the Lord for changing me since I’ve been here and meeting a lot of people. I also thank God for being able to go to school this fall.
James—I want to prase God for yesterday. I thought we were going to die because I made a bad turn. But God sent an angel to protect us.
I also want to praise God for how he worked here in H—–and I—-. For the most part the summer has been a struggle as far as being the leader but here in the last 2 weeks God really blessed and I saw him move in mighty ways.
Sheena—I met the owner of a sewing shop and it turns out she was Christian. She loved books but was in a financially hard place. She wanted to get 6 boosk but didn’t have the funds. Her son got married, had 9 kids with this woman and she left him and then he remarried and had 2 more kids with another woman who is now on drugs. So he’s just alone and a single father. Peace Above the Storm would be really good for her son, so even though she didn’t have much money she scraped up some money for it. before that she said Revelation was her favorite book and was really interested in the GC. Even though she was impressed to give only $15 I was impressed to leave her with the GC as well. She was thankful, and gave me this really tight hug. She was so grateful for the book. I know that was the book she needed and the Lord sent me to her. I know she’ll read it and benefit greatly from it.
On houses in the afternoon I met a doctor and I thank the Lord for showing me right away that he was a Devil’s Rabbit. He was an old man, who came and saw me and asked if I wanted to sit down and come inside. I decided I’d stay outside so he brought a chair. We were talking and I said I had to go. I did that 7 times and eventually he asked if someone was with me, and I said my partner was a boy. He seemed relieved after that. Then he said he’d give me a small donation, but all he did was talk more. That’s when I called James to get me. At the next house the person got 6 books. That man could’ve held me up for 30 minutes and I would not have been able to get out the 6 books.
Glory— Yesterday was a bit slow for me. I thought my last day would be my highest day. After the group finished and was having smoothies, I asked James to take me to one more street. I was hoping for a dump bag, but I didn’t get out a single book, and I realized one thing: through the entire canvassing program when I got books out, it was by God’s power, not by my effort.
Abominable Snowman– I’m thankful that I lasted the entire ten weeks. I almost left at least 9 times. Even at the end I wondered whether or not it was worth it. Was what I lost worth more than what was gained? I thought that, when I finished the whole ten weeks, I’d feel like I really accomplished something, and that I could handle anything. Instead I just felt exhausted. Like I’d spent the summer holding my breath, and now I could finally sigh in relief. I spent the next few days alone with a bible, and then God showed me. The point of staying the entire ten weeks wasn’t so that I could feel like I had accomplished something and could do anything. The point of staying the entire ten weeks was so that God could show me that He had accomplished something, and that, if I cooperated, He could do anything.