Monday, November 21, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving one and all!!

Buenos dias mis queridos padres y amigos!                    21 Nov 2011

We had really awesome week! There are so many positive things that are happening here in our area, and we are super excited for the future here. We just keeping going out and working hard everyday and we have been seeing so many blessings from it. Just this past week we found two new investigators that are truly prepared to receive the Gospel. They are both 16 year old young women. One is Hispanic and one is Native. One of them attends seminary and reads from the Book of Mormon almost everyday. She just basically has never gotten baptized, even though she lives the life of a member already. She is preparing to get baptized on the 10th of December. The other one just moved up here to live with her dad. She lived most of her life in New Mexico with her mom, who is not a member. So her whole family here is members and she goes to church every week with them. So we always thought that she was a member already, but now we know that she isn't and she has a great desire to be baptized. She too is preparing to be baptized on the 10th of December. So there are some extremely positive things happening and we are happy to be here in this area.

This week has been a really big learning experience for me. I mean, everyday I am learning, but I learned a lot this last week.  I started to question how strong of a missionary I am, and why I was even a zone leader.  The next day as I was studying in the Book of Mormon, I came across a scripture in Moroni 8:16. It says, ".... Behold, I speak with boldness, having authority from God; I fear not what man can do; for perfect love casteth out all fear." This hit me so hard. I realized that I was really lacking boldness in my missionary work. I was letting things of the world get me down, and I wasn't presenting this message to the best of my abilities. Well I now have repented of that and am heading in the right direction. I am trying to emulate this everyday now. I am trying to be bold and go and do what the Lord has called me to do. I especially like the last part of the scripture, which talks about perfect love, or charity. I am really trying to develop that love. Charity is a struggle, but it is a commandment and something that is required for us to have to enter into God's kingdom.

This week has also been super eye opening to how well young men can be prepared to serve missions. I have seen this in young men as young as 12 and have seen it in young men that are 18 and leaving on their missions. Preparations starts long before the mission papers are started. This preparations starts long before these young men even receive the Priesthood. It starts when they are in the Primary. The song "I hope they call me on a mission" helps emphasize this. It comes through righteous living from the beginning. That is the true preparation. Righteous living from youth until death. I know now, that one does not need to graze in a different pastures, to know that the pasture that we have has the best grass we can obtain. I wish I would have discovered that in my youth, but I know it now and I am helping others come and be part of the Lord's flock. This is the greatest work I could be doing right now, and I am enjoying every moment that I have to do it.

This week was the end of the transfer, so that means changes too. But I am happy to say that nothing is happening or changing for me this transfer. Elder Castro and I are staying together in Cedar City. This is the first time in my whole mission that I have not had to change companions. I really love my companion and my area, and there is so much good to come in the next few months. So it will be a great next transfers. (I asked if the next transfer would be before or after Christmas and how hard it would be to be transferred a few days before Christmas.  Chad said the next transfer will be after the first of the year. So he will be in Cedar City for Christmas.)

Well Mom, you asked about a Spanish Thanksgiving. Basically it isn't really that different. I think maybe it is because we still live in the States, but they cook turkeys, but just cook it with chiles. It really is good, but it depends on the family too. Sometimes they cook different things, like goat. Oh, and goat really is good. So you should try it sometime Mom! (Not likely!!  - the Mom) 

Oh and sorry for not sending a picture. I will take one this week and send it home. My camera battery died, so there will be no pictures this week, next week I promise..Thanks for everything Mom, and everyone else. I am grateful for the chance to have all of your support! May God bless you this Thanksgiving season!

Live it, Love it, Preach it!

con muchismo amor,    ELDER D

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