May 30, 2011
Well, another week. I figured out this week that 3/8 of my mission is over already. How crazy is that? I feel like I’m just getting around the bend as far as not being so green. Hard to imagine too that nine months ago I saw everyone for the last time. There was a missionary that is leaving this week and he gave his farewell talk today. It was a good talk and brought me back to that time of excitement, how I was super excited to go, but didn’t really know how it all was going to be. I don’t think I really understood what an adventure this mission would be, but I’m glad I’m here. There is no other place for me. Oh and by the way this week was changes. No news, I'm still here. And my companion is too. We were figuring that it would be like that.
Well nothing super exciting for me has happened. This week was more baking in this oven. Still no rain either. They say that it should start any time now, but I haven’t seen anything of that yet. My companion has a little over a year and he said one night it started raining and it didn’t stop. They went out and took some pictures and
the water was up to their ankles. That will be cool to see when it finally comes.
Some pretty rough stuff has happened this week. We taught one lady a while ago and she was really pumped up to read the Book of Mormon. She said she was going to read it in two weeks. We hadn’t been able to visit her for a couple weeks and we finally found her. She sent her little girl out and she gave us the Book of Mormon back without a word. That was pretty rough. Sometimes you’ve seen, “I'm busy, can you come back later?” Or “I'm leaving right now can you come back tomorrow”. After about five or six times a normal missionary can figure out what’s going on, but this was one of the hardest
straightest “no” that I’ve ever found. Also we had a sweet lesson with the lady Georgina. We taught the plan of salvation lesson (after checking to read the Book of Mormon. She said she had and was in chapter five after the intro and testimonies). We taught pretty well bouncing off one another and teaching how important things are in this life; that they can affect what we do throughout our life. The next appointment we had was for Friday. Right before we left the house she called us and said that she wasn’t going to change religions and that she wanted to check things out in her own first. We went there and had a long talk with her about trusting in what God wants and not what we want. It was really interesting and hard. We came to the conclusion that we were going to wait a little while and she was going to keep reading the Book of Mormon and praying to find out which church was true. Someone’s relying on Higher Powers to testify of the truth. When we left I turned around after about half a block and she was still watching us go. I don’t think it’s over with her but hit was a really hard blow. The two things that are the worst about this mission really hit hard. One is when people like her lose interest or are confused. The second and this is probably worse is that this mission is only for two years and there is no second chances.
Another cool experience was with the grandpa of Kendra (one of the girls that got baptized last week). He said that he didn’t really believe in God. Not that he believed that there was no God, but that he didn’t know if there was a God. How do you teach a guy like that? I remember Elder Luke talking about one of his investigators had some questions similar. To try to see if he’d open up, we took him to the temple. We went and two or three people came by and bore testimony of the existence of our Heavenly Father. He said the only problem was that he couldn’t feel that (I'm thinking more not wanting to feel and denying the feeling; honestly who goes to the temple and doesn’t feel the spirit?). Anyway, it was pretty interesting to see him think and look at the temple. Sometimes people would come up and see where we are from. When they would talk to us he would stare at the temple. In the end an old couple asked us to take some photos of them. It was funny because some of them spoke English and Spanish, some just
Spanish and some just English. But that’s the basic isn’t it? Having the confirmation, and believing that there is a God is the most fundamental principle of the gospel. If there is no God, there was no pre-life, no purpose here in life, and there is no post life. How boring is that? But we do have a Heavenly Father. He loves us and has a plan that we are to come down to earth and exercise the power of the Atonement in preparation to come back with him. Had there been no God, there would be no reason to prepare ourselves. But there is a God and a reason to prepare ourselves. There is a reward for clean hands and a pure heart. There is a reason for everything in the Gospel and everything we are asked to do. The thing is that we can’t see probably about 75% of how it all works. Sure we see and read scriptures but without the divine testimony of the Book of Mormon, it is only a history book. Sure we can have prophets, but without the testimony of Joseph Smith as a prophet, these men today have as much authority as anyone else. We can pay tithing, but without the faith that this is a commandment of God and that all this is for a purpose, it is just giving money that we’ve earned to someone else. The feelings and identification of the Spirit are essential to our eternal progress. Without these feelings, we will be like the seed that fell among rocks in the parable of the sewer. When the sun comes (like the giant ball of pure heat that I'm getting to know here) it will dry up our puny roots and we will not bring forth fruit. Testimony is necessary; it (grouped with the blood of The Lamb) was the only thing that allowed us to keep our first estate. They are also the only things that will help us to continue on and progress. And it all starts with one question. ¨Does he exist? ¨ He does.
In answer to your questions real quick mom, I'm pretty sure that I meant to put that the baptism was 10 in the morning. I don’t know how to get some people to church at 10 let alone to a baptismal service at 4. I don’t have the bomb scriptures with me. I’ll try to bring them with me next week. Also with the hammocks, there are… well I can’t really describe them. They are well, I’ll take a picture and that will explain how it all works. And I still have my card reader. Don’t worry about that one.
Well don’t have any more time. Thanks for those that have repented and written. I’ll get back as soon as I can. For those who don’t, well I'm still waiting.
p.s. all hopes on getting my package today