Thursday, July 7, 2016

Week 13

Another week with not much time in Justo Daract, pero esta bien. We went to Mendoza again this week for a conference with the president of our area, Elder Texiera who is a member of the 70. He is absolutely inspired ( just like every leader of the church) but I really learned a lot! It was awesome! Also this week I hit my 3 month mark which is a little strange considering I feel like it´s been forever since I left home and I still have a ton of time left. But I just remember what my branch president from the MTC said, ¨The best way to kill time is to work it to death” Bueno. So that´s what I’m trying to do :)  At the start of this week I was really sick while we traveled and during the conference, but now I’m fine and my companion has what I had! Ah haha stinking germs! I thought as a missionary we were invincible to those kind of things! haha 
   Oh and one of the best parts of this week ....... WE GOT A WORKING STOVE!!!!! wahoooooo we can actually cook real food now and it´s literally the best thing in the whole world! The first thing I made was mac n’ cheese :) no surprise! Still no hot water, but baby steps. I´m happy :)
Not much progress because not many lessons this week but we´re knocking a lot of doors and talking to a lot of people in the streets. 
   Jose: Jose is our investigator with depression and a phobia of people and smokes a ton to keep calm. On Tuesday we had a lesson with him about the Word of Wisdom. The spirit was so strong it almost knocked me out of my chair! Jose agreed to to stop drinking coffee on the spot and slowing stop smoking. Right now he´s smoking about 40 cigarettes a day so we made him a fun little calendar to track his progress. It´s going to take a lot of time and a lot of work but I know he can do it! It´s amazing the change he is willing to make for the gospel! He still hasn't attended church but we´ll get there. We gave him the talk by Elder Holland about depression that he gave a couple years ago in General Conference and it really helped him. 
    Jordan y Mary: This family is awesome! They want us in their house 3 times a week! heck ya! But one problem ... Jordan won´t pray with us. He won´t pray in front of anyone! not his wife, not his kids, not us, no one! So we don´t know if he´s actually even praying when he´s alone .. hmmm.  Also apparently my Spanish is the worst of the worst. I thought I was improving and the members and other missionaries say that my Spanish has gotten much better. But after one of our lessons with Jordan and Mary, Mary told me that Jordan can´t understand a word that comes out of my mouth. Not even a basic idea. That means he´s not understanding half of the lesson!! Wow. If that´s not a shot to my confidence I don´t know what is. I know my Spanish isn´t perfect and I have a lot more to learn, but I thought I could at least get the main idea of a lesson across ... 
    Juan: juan juan juan ... he is our investigator that is 57 and won´t get baptized because his mom doesn't´t want him to change. This week was a big week of improvement for him! On Tuesday we had a (whip noise) lesson with him to get him to commit to a date and talk to his family about his love for the gospel. In the lesson he was super iffy about the date and talking to his parents. We were really discouraged and then had to leave the next day for Mendoza. We called him the next night to see how he was doing and to give him a scripture to read and he told us he had a ¨revelation¨. He said the night before he had a dream -  me, crying, and motioning with my hand to come. He woke up the next morning crying and all day at work he was crying. So as soon as we returned we had a lesson with him and gave him a baptismal date in 2 weeks and a calendar to help him prepare. After he receives a blessing from our bishop he is going to talk with his family about getting baptized and share his testimony with them. He´s a lot more happy now that he´s committed to a date! But how amazing is that experience? Every future missionary hears about those stories where a person dreams about them and the next day they knock on their door, or you read a scripture on someones porch and they start crying, and as a future missionary you want one of those experiences! People would always say ¨there´s someone in Argentina that needs your testimony or needs your spirit¨ and usually you just brush it off. But I know, with all my heart and soul that I´m supposed to be here in Argentina. In Mendoza. In Justo Daract. If not for any other person, for Juan. At the end of our last lesson he just expressed his thanks for being here in Justo Daract and helping him come unto Christ. Whether I actually get to see him get baptized or not I know that I helped him find the light of Christ in this crazy confusing world. I am so beyond grateful for the power of the Holy Ghost and the opportunity I have to work hand in hand with Him to help these people! 
I´ve been hearing so much about so many mission calls and people on their missions and I love it! You´re all making the best decision of your lives! I´m so pumped for all of you! As you´re all preparing to head out soon, I just wanna share a bit of my 3 months of wisdom. haha 

      A mission is the most humbling experience. With a new culture, new language and really having to give your all, it is emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually draining and it sucks. But please oh please oh please DO NOT GIVE UP! The Lord has given you everything! Do not let your pride get the best of you and think that you´re better than a mission. Any thing is possible with the Lord. When you feel like you’re ready to give up, or you think about going home, first - you´re not alone. Every missionary has those same feelings. Turn to the Lord. Don´t blame him. Ask for help and you will receive it! As missionaries we are fulfilling prophecies and saving souls for the eternities, It´s a crazy thing but it´s the biggest blessing! Be humble and give the Lord your ALL! Once you completely give yourself to him, you will receive so much help and so many blessings you don´t even know what to do with yourself.

        You're not going to get along with all of your companions. it´s life. But love them. You have the same purpose, the same investigators, and study the same scriptures every day. It's not easy. But I promise that if you concentrate on how to help them and how to serve them, your lessons will benefit and TOGETHER you can bring so many people unto Christ! 
So on Monday night I was tired and sick and it was cold and we had been knocking doors for 4 hours and I was ready to drop dead. We came to a door and these 3 dogs poked their heads around the corner of the house and just starred at us. It was like one of those old western movies where a tumble weed rolled in-between us and the weird music. The dogs started growling and barking. The biggest one took one step and Hermana Gonzales and I just took off running! I was running and looking behind me to see if the dogs were following us and I straight up ran into a tree. Ya running as fast as I could, smack dab into a tree. Even better, there were people in the street that watched the whole thing. Yes, I am a representative of Jesus Christ and I just ran full speed into a tree :) welcome to the life of a missionary!
Oh and then on the bus to Mendoza (it´s a 2 story bus) I was walking down the stairs to use the bathroom and fell down the stairs. Ya. I guess this week i just couldn´t control my body. haha
Jacob 4:7 
Nevertheless, the Lord God showeth us our weakness that we may know that it is by his grace, and his great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have power to do these things.

Every single person has experiences and times in their lives when they feel completely helpless and alone. In the mission those feelings and experiences are magnified. haha It´s the most amazing thing to see the difference when I humble myself before the Lord and ask for every bit of help. We all have those weaknesses and need help in every aspect of our lives, I promise, with every bit of my body and soul that if you turn to the Lord he will help you with whatever you need! Recognize your weakness and ask for help!
¨Here´s my heart Lord, take and seal it¨ 
-Come Thou Fount (the song)

This is my district eating ice cream and pizza :) Hermana Henrie is holding the camera (she´s my favorite) then it´s Hermana Sangama her companion, my and Hermana Gonzales. The Elders are Elder Puyo from Buenos Aries and Elder Solomon from Hurricane Utah who is in his last transfer

les quiero mucho
hermana smoot

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