Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Week 15

  We had interviews with the Mission President this last Thursday, it was super cool. Whenever I get the chance to talk to President its like I'm talking with a prophet. He is super nice and for my first interview it was in English, yay! My spanish isnt really improving because I don't practice enough, so it will be fun when I get sent to somewhere down south and nobody speaks English. Especially because my companion is from Ecuador. Who knows why I'm not good at spanish. He practices his English every day. He is super good.
    We are planning a branch activity on May 8th, we are going to have a little BBQ and some games and invite everyone.  My personal studies are getting a little bit better, I started studying more for our investigators and less actives and it has helped me stay awake more. The mission is so great and happy except this week has been a little bit depressing. We found that a few of our people have been having some struggles with drugs. We went to a new members house and she was super high, she is the girl we just baptized. It is kind of depressing to see your people moving backwards, but I know that setbacks happen and people all make mistakes. Today we are going to go over there and talk with her, watch a spiritual video and talk about the Grace of God. I'm just worried that she will think God is so upset with her and doesn't want to talk with her. I think that if she knew the Atonement better and understood repentance more fully, she will be ok. Also the mother of one of our investigators, was found by her sister in her apartment passed out on the floor after getting really high. And she is fighting to keep her kids right now. She isn't in trouble but we are hoping to teach her. I just hope we can help out her family. Sometimes I wish I could somehow tell people right out how much they need the Gospel.
     The work continues to be a struggle, right when we have some really spiritual lesson with someone and it's really great, they dont show up to church or they smoke weed later that day or something. I don't understand what drives people sometimes but we need to keep on trying to help. I like the scripture in Luke 11, I don't remember the verses but it talks about habits and about if we give into them they will only get harder and harder.
     Not too much to report, hope you have a great week, Love you!
See the scorpion in the light?

Torrential spring downpour off our roof.

Week 14

We got haircuts! The new Elder in our house knows how to cut hair, but only one hair style so all four of us have the same haircut. It's pretty funny when people see all of us together. So don't be surprised if you get asked if Mormons have to have the same haircut. Hopefully not :P
    Who are the Elders in Nebraska now? Are they all new or has one of them stayed for a long time? I never really thought about how the mission there would be until I got out here. It was super hard over there, not that people didn't believe in God, they just seemed to not want to take the time. I guess there is a lot of that here though, I ask people why God is important to them and they say he isn't really and I don't know how to work with that sometimes. Another obstacle I run into pretty often is people literally don't know how to read. It happens more often than you would think. We have a member here who is 91 years old and never learned how to read and I was passing out "Teachings of the Presidents of the Church" for Priesthood yesterday and I gave him one. And he just took it and flipped open to a random page and pretended like he was following along. I felt super bad because I knew he doesn't read I just wasn't thinking. Also it was in English and he only speaks Spanish. Oh well..
  We finally got Jacob to be confirmed yesterday! He was our first baptism and ever since then we have been trying to get him to come to church on Sunday to get confirmed. It is hard because his aunt hates the church and he has to stay with her now because of his Grandma's health. I feel really bad for him, I feel like we set him up to fail. But I am going to pray for him as much as I can :/. We just got a new rule about that actually. If we have an investigator who is a youth, they have to be in church 8 weeks out of 12 weeks before they can be baptized and they have to stay for all 3 hours at least 4 times out of those 8. Also anyone who has any addiction or problem, needs to be free of it for 2 weeks before they can be baptized. Which is actually really good because that will establish going to church and everything as a habit. It is going to be hard but I know it is for the best. That rule isn't world wide though, just for our stake and a few others that I know of.
     We had some crazy weather here lately. For a few days it would downpour super hard off and on. I saw the most peculiar rain patterns. We were in the car and I kid you not it was raining on one side of the road and not the other, it would pour super crazy in like a 20x20ft area and nowhere else and then it would just move somewhere else. Super weird! Then the other night we were eating with a member and there was a tornado warning for our area! It felt just like home! Haha so we left early and drove in the rain home and all that night there was a really loud thunder storm. Sometimes it would shake the walls.
    Exciting stuff! Hope you guys keep doing awesome! LOVE YOU! 

Shaking up the workout....

Week 13

     This week was really great! We have been working with an investigator for a little while and she was baptized on Saturday and confirmed on Sunday. And another awesome thing, yesterday was fast Sunday and at the beginning of the meeting she didn't even know what it was. Then I walked up and sat in line to bear my testimony and she walked up and sat next to me! She bore her testimony like 15mins after being confirmed. She cried in front of everyone and her makeup was everywhere, it was so cool.
     We had some changes in our zone for the missionaries just because of the new transfer, and our District leader went home and so now we have a new district leader. Every few days we have to do "follow-ups" at night. We just tell him how we are doing and our numbers for the week so far.   
     The work is going really well though! I love it, I feel happy all the time. Except sometimes in the morning. I'll be honest. But yeah even when people hate on us, I am still really happy. All is good in the hood. Yeah, I'm still super white. I cant believe Ellie pee'd on you! hahaha she is so cute.
     I will keep praying for you guys, make sure to tell me how your artwork goes! LOVE YOU!

I almost forgot some pictures of the Baptism. Missionary pictures are always so awkward... Oh we had a talent show in our zone meeting and we didn't have any talents so we said that we are all power rangers and we form Megazord or something and we climbed on each other.  


Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Week 12

Happy Easter to you too, haha! I totally forgot about Easter because I was so excited for conference. At home I didn't really care so much for conference but now that I'm out on my mission I was super excited. The talks were super good! Saturday was so much about families! Did you hear L. Tom Perry's? I think that's who it was, I forgot my notes. But he talked about how there was a huge meeting with all the religious leaders from different faiths around the world, and they all agreed on how important families are. They also agreed that it should be between man and woman and that is the strongest structure for children to be raised in. Crazy to think about how many God fearing people are out there but see little importance in their marriages or family. I always like to picture that meme with the two old people with the same truck they've had since like 1950 and the same house and they are still together. It has a caption, "We grew up in the time where if something was broken, you fix it, don't throw it away." I think here in Alice we have like 2 or 3 families in our branch that have the parents still together. It's super hard to talk about the happiness and security of families with them. Which is really sad because I think that is probably some of my favorite doctrine.
   Elder Holland spoke yesterday! He is my favorite speaker. He is always super powerful and passionate. Holland talked about the story of the two brothers who went rock climbing and the older one almost died and the younger one saved him, and compared it to the Atonement. Super powerful.
   However, as great as general conference was, we had very few people show up to both Saturday and Sunday sessions.I think for 3 sessions it was the missionaries, the president and one or two members. But we had 3 investigators in the first Saturday session and they all loved it! 
   This morning we got our transfers!!!!! I will be staying in Alice! Elder Rosero and I will be companions again. Wooo!! Super excited, now that we know the area a little more and the members, we can really start working together. But one of the Elders in our house is leaving :(. He has been here for about 6 months! But I think the only reason for that is because he didn't speak any English before his mission. He has been up North his whole mission. Maybe he'll get sent down to the valley. 
   I am already destroying my clothes... So I ripped the pocket of one playing basketball, I fell off my bike with another one and its all dirty and didn't come out in the wash.(Yes, I'm fine, and don't laugh at me). One shirt I ruined in the MTC laying in flowers and now it has little yellow spots all over the back from pollen. And I put my clothes in the washer and someone was nice and put them in the dryer but didn't know to take our my slacks and the hemming came out of one side. It's greaaattt.. But no worries, I did get your package, thank you so much! I will try to get some of the stains out with that stuff. Hopefully I can find a super nice sister in our branch who knows how to sew.
  Glad to know you guys are doing well, LOVE YOU
 "Mary and The Resurrected Lord" Harry Anderson

Week 11

Hi Everyone!
   This week has been great! Nathan brought someone to church? Awesome! Good for him! What a missionary :D. I love seeing people in church! This week we had 3 of our investigators there and the other elders had 1 and then we had a bunch of non active families, we actually filled up the chairs! Oh yeah we have chairs, not pews. Pews? Idk how to spell that, I'm sorry mom, I have failed you.. haha just kidding. But we had a ton of people in church this last Sunday and the speakers where a dad and his son from a neighboring town and their talks were perfect!!! Exactly what our investigators needed to hear! I know they received revelation! One of our investigators was freaking out, they covered just about all of the things she was unsure of, it was so cool. 
   We are doing pretty well, guess what! I fell off my bike for the first time, it was super great. My comp was taking forever crossing the big street here and so I was on the other side and I was bouncing my front tire and I was right by the railroad tracks and so there was a bunch of gravel and I slipped and flipped over the handlebars. It was sweet. Haha I didnt hurt myself at all but my shirt was all dirty and I hope it comes out in the wash. Bad week for shirts. I was playing bball like we do every week in Mutual and a like 10 year old kid was going crazy attacking everyone with the ball and he ripped my shirt pocket almost all the way off. So I am trying to find a sweet lady from relief society to sew it for me. 
   Our companionship is doing really well, we have a lot of fun and teach well together. I hope people feed us this week because I have $13 for this week in grocery shopping. I usually only spend like 20-25 a week on food, just like milk and eggs and stuff for sandwiches. But we went bowling for an Elder's Birthday and we go out to eat after meetings. But all is well.. haha Grampa.. 

    Elli sounds even cuter than before. I miss her. I wanna read her books again haha. I got to read some kids a book the other day and it reminded me of reading to her. And they loved it because the native language of their parents is spanish and so their mom speaks very little english and their dad speaks ok, but they probably never really get a good story in English. I read them like seriously 8 books. It was really funny.
    We have a great relationship with the ward members now, they are starting to trust us. This morning I got to weedwack around our house. Sorry I never did that around our house dad.
    Living the good life! Glad your B-day was good, LOVE YOU MOM!