Monday, February 21, 2011

I Love the Book of Mormon

February 21, 2011

Things are going well in the mission. We’ve been working with quite a few investigators and the Lord has really blessed us. It was a week full of trials and testing as well. But we had a great zone conference with President Da Silva and another zone. We had to get everything ready in terms of food and seating. It was as always a little stressful, but it all worked out, and it was a huge spiritual experience. President talked a lot about opposition and overcoming it. As well, he made reference to Joseph Smith’s first prayer and that when Satan opposed him, he exerted ¨all my power to call upon God...¨ I felt a little like that at times this week. We saw lots of opposition in the zone this week, but we are overcoming with faith. We just have to do our part, and then trust in the Lord that He will fulfill His promises. I know that He never forgets His promises. President also left us with the challenge of reading the Book of Mormon in 6 weeks again. This time, marking all the references to heart. Hard hearts, soft hearts, etc... It has been really eye opening. I love the Book of Mormon. Every time I read it, I find answers to my questions and direction to what I should do and how I can be a better missionary and representative of Christ. I love the story of Nephi. He is such a CAPO!!! He was so faithful, even when it would have been so easy to give up. I have been trying to develop faith like him. It’s no easy task, and I doubt I will even be able to get there anytime soon, but I’m going to try! We’ve been working really well with the members. The ward is doing very well. They recently changed the borders to give another ward more support and a couple of families. But the attendance is already up to 117 again! This ward is very great! They work really hard and are so willing to help us and support our investigators. We just have to work hard and earn their trust.

Working Harder Than Ever

February 14, 2011

This past week was very interesting and full of challenging experiences. I always get a little nervous when my companion leaves and I'm left to run the area by myself for a few days. Elder Luke is really awesome. He’s a big guy from California Los Angeles area. His mom is Samoan and his Dad is from the states. He and I get along really well.

We have been helping this family to make the preparations to get married so they can get baptized. They are Juan, and Nancy, and their family. The marriage process here is a little complicated and expensive for those who don’t make a lot of money. But they are doing fine and continue to progress and read the Book of Mormon. I love that book! It’s so true!

Also, we had a miracle at church yesterday. An investigator named AndrĂ©s was going to come. But Sunday morning he sent us a message saying that his son wanted to see him and that he wasn’t going to make it. We kind of got a little discouraged. But as we were waiting at the door, he sent another message telling us he was on his way! When he got there, he received a warm welcome from the members and felt really nice to be there! It was awesome! He has a baptismal date for the 26th of February. We are hoping and praying a lot for him. We lost some contact with a couple of other investigators like Carlos but we still have hope that if we do our part, the Lord will pour out His blessings upon us. He already has so much!

I know I need to be focused on the work and I am, but I can’t help but get really excited about Becky’s wedding! VA A SER UNA BODA MARAVILLOSA!!!!!

I have to admit, these past few weeks I’ve been feeling super tired... probably more tired than I ever have in my life. I was just pondering that I don’t think I have ever sacrificed more time, stress, energy, and love in one thing in my whole life. This work, difficult and challenging as it may be, is the most rewarding and peace bringing thing I have ever done. ¨He who looseth his life for my sake, shall find it.¨ This scripture is so very true. I love you all. Keep the faith, and you are in my prayers!

An Awesome Baptism

February 7, 2011

We had an AWESOME baptism this past weekend. It was a great way to start off February, and it was one of the most well attended baptismal services I have ever been to! There were about 60 people there! And Brian Medeiro, the guy who was baptized, invited lots of his friends to the service. It was really cool; He even got up in front and shared his testimony in the end. It was a very sweet experience. He is the nephew and grandson of some members in our ward. He was such a miracle. We had been looking very hard for investigators. He came to church with his aunt and grandma and we set a baptismal date with him the same day. Three weeks later he was baptized. He has fit in nicely with the growing Aaronic Priesthood quorum. He is 15. I sent you a few pictures. It was such an amazing experience. That was the biggest news from here in Uruguay. Well, changes have come as well. Elder Carlock is headed off to Florida! My old area of Piedra Alta! I’m so excited for him. The area is going great right now! All the families I left there are doing great, and I hear that they have received their first callings in the Church! He’s going to love it! My new companion is a new zone leader named Elder Luke. Changes are tomorrow, but I already know him. He came to Uruguay with my greenie Elder Delbar, and I was in the same zone with him for a couple of months. He’s a great guy. He’s a big Pacific Islander.