Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Letters to Dad and Mom May 20, 2014
May 20, 2014
I love you!
The cookie dough was good. (Chuck's good ol' recipe that Michelle likes.) We`ve made it about 2 times now...and it goes just as fast.
I am on the taller side here in Guatemala. There are people that are tall (by U.S. standards) but it`s rare. And yes, you would be tall here. :)
That`s sad when the Temple closes for cleaning and reparations every year. But it makes you appreciate the Temple that much more. I know I appreciate the Temple more because I can`t just get up and go whenever I want. I definitely will take advantage of going every week when I get home, for as long as I can. But really, it makes going to the Temple that much more special. And I`m realizing how much family history helps converts stay in the Church. in Preach My Gospel, it talks about how using family history work will increase retention with the converts. We started focusing more in family history work with our converts and I think some of them will come back to church because they are looking for their parents and grandparents and ancestors to take their names to the Temple.
It`s true - I was reading Alma 32 this week and Alma was saying how much more blessed are the people that humble themselves without the Lord`s help (or, they choose to be humble and are not forced to be humbled). As we choose to allow the Lord into our lives to change our characters, we will be happier and we will become what the Lord wants us to be.
This week we had a day where we had 12 lessons (8 with member) and it was incredible. It was probably one of the craziest days of my mission (we met a lot of different people that were really different). But I learned that I have patience for people. A few times during the day, I recognized that I have developed more patience in my life for other people. I`m still working on patience for myself, but that as well is getting better. And I know that I can change because Jesus Christ paid for the sufferings and afflictions that we have. He already paid HIs part and we just have to do our part. We need to do the little things - read the scriptures, pray, go to church, keep the commandments - and we have the right to ask for help with the things that we need to make better in our lives. I have seen many people here that don`t do the little things because they don`t think that they`re important or won`t help, but that is so far from the truth. Like it says in Alma 37:6-7, "by small and simple things are great things brought to pass". As a companionship, we`re going to do better with explaining that with all the people that we teach - less actives, investigators, inactives, etc. I know that it is through these things that we improve and have the Spirit more with us.
I love you, dad! I pray for you and mom and our family everyday!
Con MUCHO amor,
May 20, 2014
I love you!
I`m glad Sister Silvester got her letter. And that Sister Nelson read my note to the Young Women to the girls. It`s interesting to see how the Spirit works with me - for me it works through thoughts most of the time. I keep thinking about a quote from Elder Bednar, "If you`re worried if it`s you thinking or the Spirit, stop worrying about it. Be a good boy, be a good girl, do what you`re supposed to do, and you`ll be led to do the right thing" (paraphrase). AKA, if we`re doing good things, it doesn`t matter if it`s us or the Spirit, because we`re doing good things (Moroni 7:16-17).
Kelly told me that Sarah Jane`s still afraid of the water. Give her a hug for me and tell her to pray have faith (Alma 32:21) and that God will help her have peace (John 14:26, I think).
And yes, it is better that you lose your shyness before your mission. It might act up again and you need to know how to overcome it. And being able to sing really helps, especially in the countries where there isn`t a piano and no one really knows the tune. So tell the kids to learn how to sing the hymns and play them, if they are learning to play piano.
And guess who got to play trombone this past week? Yep. We had a talent night in the branch and the branch president found one somewhere and I got to play (I played "Abide with me, tis eventide" and "The Spirit of God"). Considering that I haven`t played for a while, it was pretty good. And I also sang a Spanish version of "Come thou fount". Every says that my voice is pretty good and I`ve been singing more. I`m going to sing for hte baptism we have this next weekend.
And Samuel didn`t get baptized this weekend and we`re going to meet with him tonight. Some things came up and we think that he didn`t feel prepared (because he didn`t come to church on Sunday nor got up for his interview on Saturday). But he still wants to get baptized, we just have to work with him.
BUT we will baptize 4 people this week (Sunday) - Natalia and three of her daughters. And her other daughter will get baptized on the next Sunday and her nieces are starting to investigate the church. She`s awesome - she`s going to do great things in the church.
This morning, my companion and I were talking about how we need to do the little things that are the part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ - read the scriptures, pray, go to church, keep the commandments - because we have seen so many people stop coming to church because they dropped the "little things". They don`t think that the little things offer salvation, but they do. Hermana Johnson was reading in 4 Nephi and how the people started to divide, but it first started with a small part of the people. And I read yesterday in Alma 32 and how we need to nourish our seed with the small things. It`s true when it says "by small and simple things are great things brought to pass" (Alma 37:6-7). We`re going to help people see that more and that they really do need to do the small things to have salvation and not just keep the "big" commandments like the word of wisdom or law of chastity. It`s the small things that will keep us safe and keep Satan out of our hearts and minds. Because if he has a millimeter of space to work in our hearts, he will attack us with all the force he has until he "seals us as his". So don`t let Satan in and do the small things in the Gospel to keep us safe.
I love you, mom! I hope that you and everyone are safe and well! I pray for you all everyday and love you!
Con MUCHO amor,