October 13, 2014
So this week we learned that our área, Cabada, is actually enormous. To use an example, if I were to compare Cabada to San Diego, we were only working in the center of the city. We learned that all these little pueblos that are around Cabada are included in our área as well, so now we’re branching out into the “la jolla” and “Carlsbad” of Cabada. It’s beautiful and the people are great. This bigger área has taken our planning to a whole new level.
So I’ve realized that down here in Cabada anything American is cool. There’s so many people who wear shirts that are in English. Like I’ll see old ladies in the Street with really…explicit…shirts on but they’re in english so no one has any idea. Or these big semi truck drivers often blast the American band One Direction…not saying One Direction isn’t cool (okay maybe I am…sorry Megan)….it was just funny to see.
So when I said we worked hard the weeks before, they are nothing compared to this week. There’s a standard of excellence for the missionaries in our missión, which is 50 lessons in a week. We cranked this week and actually surpassed that standard of excellence, in hopes that we would be blessed in our work. We are struggling with one our investigators. She has a rock solid testimony of Joseph Smith, but somehow doesn’t believe that anyone after him was a prophet. I feel like that’s not even a spiritual problem, it’s just a fault in logic…because usually if they have a testimony in Joseph Smith we’re good to go. Well we BEGGED this woman to pray about this concern. For reasons that are too long to list, she hasn’t prayed yet. We did ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING to help her. I’ll be 100% honest I was really mad on the walk to the bus after she refused to pray because we had met the requirements for helping someone gain a testimony. It wasn’t possible for us to be more direct with her. She just refused to pray about it. But its okay because I read the scriptures and felt a lot better about this situation. Now, I’m even more focused to do everything we need to do to help this woman.
Also we found this family of 4 that were taught by missionaries a few years back. We’ve sorted out about 6 really hard doctrinal questions they had. More to come hopefully about them, but this family is amazing! They’re the family that you find reading the scriptures when you show up to the lesson. Their 9 year old son Raul is THE MAN! He recounted the entire restoration for us. Interestingly enough, the only problem with them is they are so united as a family that it causes a problema with church attendance, because you can’t baptize someone who hasn’t gone to church at least 5 times. So we are going to try and focus on that because they’ve all received spiritual manifestations and confirmations of the truth.
But overall its been a fantastic week! Love and miss you all!!
October 6, 2014
So I’ve been wondering whether or not I should share this story for the sake of my wonderful mother, but I have decided its okay. Since Elder Rodriguez and I are so tall, we stand out way too much to walk through the center of the city, with people everywhere and stores and such. So we found this really convenient alleyway that cuts behind it…not a very long alley, not even dangerous, just a great path. So we use that all the time. Last night we were walking home from a disappointing lesson with Maria and we were both quite bothered. One thing I should also mention is that Elder Rodriguez broke his glasses, so this kid is basically blind. After this lesson we were bewildered and disoriented because of what happened with Maria, and we decided to pray to know where to go next for the last lesson of the day. We had almost made it to our alley, which is a great place to pray, when this drunk dude on a bike rides up to us and starts to get off. Elder Rodriguez approached him and started talking, but this dude said, and I quote “Oh look at this! Come on you (insert bad spanish word)!!” This dude whipped out a MACHETE!! I don’t know why, but when I realized that Elder Rodriguez was blind, my first instinct was go jump at this guy and take him down. I realized that was unwise. This guy started hobbling over to us waving his machete in big sweeping motions in front of him. I grabbed Elder Rodriguez and yelled “Machete! Vamonos!” We turned around and walked away calmly walked away (the drunk dude could hardly walk, so we were fine) until we noticed the drunk guy getting back on his bike to pursue us faster. We took off running! And…call me crazy but I was laughing the whole time we were running away. The whole situation was just too funny. We made it to this dark property about a block away and hid for a second, and there we found another drunk man who started yelling at us telling us to go away. Poor Elder Rodriguez had reached his limit, and he chewed out the drunk guy and gave very stern instructions to his wife when she came to retrieve him. That was a very interesting night to say the least.
But more importantly, WOW YOU GUYS CONFERENCE WAS AMAZING! The talk that Jorg Klibingat(Approaching the Throne of God with Confidence) gave https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/approaching-the-throne-of-god-with-confidence?lang=eng and Quintin L Cook(Choose Wisely) https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/choose-wisely?lang=eng and Lynn G Robbins(Which way do you Face?) https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/which-way-do-you-face?lang=eng and of course, blessed David A Bednar(Come and See) https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/come-and-see?lang=eng were my absolute favorites. Its hard to pick. The themes of the conference were interesting. Lots of emphasis of gaining a testimony of Joseph Smith. That’s not hard, in my opinion. Just read the book of mormon and pray and watch the video of the restoration. I guarantee you’ll get that in no time. But there were other things too! The importance of prophets, and what it means to sustain them. Are we ready to follow any instruction we receive from the prophets? or do we just raise our hand when everyone else does? They also talked a lot about the importance of the sacrament. Also, how having questions are good, but lets remember to stay firm in the faith and keep in mind what’s really important. I wonder whats going to happen in the future with these themes in mind…
I love you guys! Ya’ll are the best! Watch conference again. Pick which side you’re on because they’re getting farther and farther apart.