Monday, April 4, 2011
Hello to all!
This week was incredible to say the least. I have had so many spiritual opportunities that I dont know where to begin, but I guess I will try! As many of you probably saw, General Conference came around this weekend, and it was spectacular to say the least. We went into nearby Luque to the stake center to watch all 5 sessions, it was what we like to called the missionaries "spring break". I saw all of the sessions (in English, which was a blessing), except for Sunday Morning, because there were complications with the connection and so everyone watched a re-run of Sat. Morning. I guess I will just have to wait for the Liahona to come out to read those. However, what an incredible conference weekend it was. I particularly enjoyed all the messages of the First Presidency (President Monson's talk in Priesthood Session especially), Elders Holland, Christofferson, Anderson, Grow, and Nelson, just to name a few. Some of the main themes I noticed (even though Elder Holland powerfully expressed that they are not given topics, but however are guided by the Spirit) was the importance of families and temple marriages, and living up to our personal spiritual potential. Conference Weekend is such an incredible opportunity each of us have to improve our lives: to understand our strengths, weaknesses, and reflect on what we can do to better ourselves and our families. I know that President Monson is the living prophet of God, and that in this very day God speaks to his children (also Elder Holland talked about, what a great talk, I cant stop referring to it). I had a great experience learning many new things, and my desire to improve my own life and the lives of others has been improved as well. The bad news is now we have to wait another 6 months!
Also this week, we made our semi-annual mission trip to the Asunción Temple. It was a very spiritual experience for me personally. I love temples, and the true importance of them. The work done in temples is sacred, and provides to us the necessary saving ordinances of life. I really enjoyed the experience, but at the same time am sad that I have to wait another 6 months (for the temple too) to go again.
My comp is zone leader and shared a cool thing to our zone, which was 3 things to do to be happy on the mission: 1st- look for a reason to smile. 2nd- look for blessings. 3rd- remember the vision. I have been trying to incorporate these things into my mission, and have already seen the blessings and happiness I have felt because of doing those things. Also, he said to look at your plaque often, and who you are representing. I love that suggestion, and always try to remember that.
We taught many lessons this week, two of which I wanted to share: first, we taught a 17 year old kid named Emelio. His parents left him at a young age, and has been through many hard times with depression and suicide. He attends the local Catholic church and enjoys it, but has an LDS friend that is a great example to him, and wanted to talk to the missionaries. He lives with his Aunt, and she wouldn't let us meet at his house, so we went to the nearby plaza in the Villa Policia and taught one of the most powerful lessons of the restoration with him. Even in the middle of a busy park, we were able to testify and teach with the Spirit, and he accepted a baptismal date, and I feel really good about him. He has the desires to better his life, and I know that if he puts in the sincere effort, he will receive his answer and know what to do. Second, we have been working with a 12 year old girl named Soledad, who lives with all members and goes to church every sunday, yet hasn't been baptized and hasn't yet understood its importance. We went in and read Alma 34:30-33 (if you have time read these) and genuinely taught to her needs. The Spirit was so strong, and she committed to baptism at the end of this week, right before changes. I hope she too puts in the work to know for herself, and prepares herself for that special day.
I love the mission, I have never been so happy in my life. I love my companion, he is a great friend and example for me. It is already as if we have been friends for a lifetime, yet its only been a couple months. I have been blessed to have such an incredible companion, and love him so much. I love my area in Bella Vista. I love the language, and the work. I love my family, I know that we can be together forever. I love my friends, and the examples in my life. Thanks for all that you do, I wish I could spend an hour and talk to each one of you and thank you for what you do, but since that is impossible, I wanted to publicly thank all of you for the love, compassion, service, and support. Keep me and the people here in your prayers. Lets all remember the vision, and the plan that God has for each one of us. Lets live up to our potentials and do what we know to be right and true.
Until next week,