Monday, November 28, 2011

Grateful for Blessings

Buenas tardes!                  28 Nov 2011
We asked for some pics of Elder Davis
consider for our annual picture
Christmas Cards.  Nice!
It is that time of the week again; the time for the weekly epistle from Elder Davis in Utah! This week was filled with the ups and downs that accompany missionary work. We had good things, but we have also been battling a lot of difficulties.
This week I was able to see a lot of missionaries that I haven’t see for quite awhile because of transfers. I got to see Elder Leguizamon this week. I hadn’t seen him for about 5 months. The weird thing is that he is actually headed up to be a zone leader in Price. (Where Chad just left!) So that is a pretty cool thing. There are a lot of missionaries that are getting ready to go home. It is strange to think that all of the missionaries that were only out a few months longer then me are getting ready to head home. 
Elder Davis and Elder Castro
     We had some frustrating moments with some people this week. One lady we tracted into was really nice and we continued to teach and talk to her and then we discovered why she wasn’t being taught. She said that she could believe in a modern prophet, but couldn’t believe in the Book of Mormon. It is just way out of whack. If someone can believe that Joseph Smith is a prophet, they should believe that the Book of Mormon is true. Sometimes people are just so frustrating and you just don’t know how to help them understand everything completely. We also had one of our investigators tell us that she prayed and she believes everything is true, but she is worried that later in her life she would pray again and that God would give her a different answer. So that was a tough bridge to cross. She just seemed to give us excuses along those lines the whole time. We couldn’t help her understand that God is the same yesterday, today, and forever; and that He wouldn’t change His answer. But everyone has their ability to choose, which is extremely frustrating at times.
I had an experience this week that helped me realize how great this work really is, and how there will be opposition in all things. We were trying to contact a potential investigator that we haven’t seen for quite a while, and their neighbors were carrying in groceries. We offered to help them and they really didn’t let us help, but decided they would tell us how bad our religion was and all the faults that we have. It was a little difficult because we wanted to just tell her our side, but she was completely closed to everything we were trying to say. Eventually we came to the point where we just asked her to pray directly to God to know if what we are saying is true. After we left, I felt genuinely sorry for the lady we had just talked to and wanted to help her out so bad. As we were driving in the car, I just kept thinking on how much I need to help others understand the truth that we carry.
We then went to contact another potential investigator, and they actually let us in! It was the first time they let us in since we started trying a month and a half ago. We then proceeded to teach the first lesson to them. It went so amazing. They had such great questions and were really paying attention. We discussed how important it was to have a "restoration of all things". We even committed them to be baptized and they didn’t shoot it down, but said that they would continue to listen and learn. Later we had another lesson with them and they accepted to be baptized in January. It helped me realize how important this work is. We really are helping others come unto Christ; this gospel is helping others change for the better. The work is true and it will continue to move forward until it has reached every nation and tongue!
Thanksgiving was pretty interesting. We weren’t allowed to go door to door, so we only had one appointment during the day. Most of the day was just hanging out, trying not to be super bored. We had two dinners, one with an English family and one with a Hispanic family. We had a traditional dinner, and then we had tamales and arroz (rice) with the Hispanic family. We also made a trip to St. George for a Spanish DTM. It was nice to see all of the Spanish missionaries in the southern part of the mission. Most of them are now training new missionaries. Elder Castro and I were the only ones there that weren’t training a new missionary. We also had to speak in the Native American Branch this weekend. It was a big learning experience. We had to speak on gratitude and thanksgiving. I never knew that there were so many scriptures on giving thanks. It helped me realize how many things I have in my life to be thankful for.
NEWS FROM HOME:  I am glad to hear about good things from home. It was awesome to hear that the missionaries back there had a baptism in the ward! That is exciting! Baptisms always are special experiences. Mom, I am glad that you enjoyed the birthday present. It was something that I saw and I really liked and thought that you deserved something special for your birthday. Speaking of which, you are how old again?  (ha Ha HA, Chad!) Well I hope that your movie with Marilyn goes great. (Marilyn has been taking Tonja to movie on her birthday for the last 5 years or so!) 
Well I am loving my mission so much and am enjoying the time I have to help others. Hopefully you all had a great Thanksgiving and truly recognize how many things we have to be grateful for. I wish all you the best this week and during this time of the year!

Live it, Love it, Preach it!  les amo!      de la vina del Senor!       ELDER D


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