Monday, December 14, 2015

August 24, 2015

This week was LO MAXIMOOOOOOOO!!! (the best)

Well to start off.. I had the great opportunity to try a variety of foods this week. for example.. octopus, cow tongue, duck, just to name a few... It was pretty dang awesome haha :) The cow tongue was my favorite though.

Anyways.. to start of with the week.  On tuesday I had the great opportunity to have exchanges with one of our zone leaders, Elder Marshall.  This meant that i had to lead the area and also be a district leader for the day.. it was kinda crazy but fun! and I learned so much from him (part of which will be my spiritual thought).  And then just yesterday he was called to be an assistant to the president! Crazy! I feel so privileged to have had the opportunity to learn from him because he is awesome.

But the highlight of the week was for sure.... LEODANS BAPTISM!! Man Saturday was a special day.  He showed up in his white shirt and tie and was so stoked to be baptized.  We had a nice service, partied a little bit after, and then he was confirmed yesterday in church.  And man it was such a good experience.  The feeling that I got when he came out of the water... I cant even describe it.  It was like I could hear Heavenly Father saying how proud he was of his son.  And all I can say is that now, more than ever, I understand a little bit of just how great the worth of souls is in the sight of god.  He loves each of his children so much and he is so proud of us when we make right choices like Leodan did.

And this week we have another baptism lined up for nuestro amigo Alexis! ON Saturday he will take this grand step as well and we are so excited for him.  Thanks for all of your prayers on his behalf and as well as those for leodan.

Anyways... spiritual thought.  I had been really struggling/wondering this week about recognizing promptings from the spirit.  It has never been a strong point of mine.  I am good at feeling the spirit like when I hear sacred music or when I listen to a testimony, but as far as normal everyday situations im not so good at it.  But I learned this week that there are lots of different ways that the spirit can talk to us, and we have to learn to recognize every single way.  Its not always going to be a chill down our spine or a burning in our bosom, the spirit has a variety of differnt forms.  And we have a great guide in Preach mY Gospel pg 96 and 97 as to how we can learn to recognize the different promptings of the spirit.  As i have studied that I have been able to be more in tune with the psirit this week, and slowly but surely I am improving in that aspect. The spirit is just awesome.  And he is always willing to help us :)

Baptism Pictures for Leodan

August 31, 2015 

We have had another incredible week here in Cartavio where we were able to help another sould come unto christ and take the incredible step of baptism in his life!!

On saturday we had the baptismal service for our dear friend alexis.  He is 17, and is so awesome!! But one thing about peruvians that is important to understand is that they are always late... so we said that the baptism would start at 4.  Alexis didnt show up until 5:30... but other than that everything was smooth sailing and it was an awesome day!! He felt the spirit so strong and he bore such a strong testimony.  He wants to serve a mission and share this gospel because it has made him so happy.  He is incredible.  And yesterday I had the opportunity to confirm him and give him the gift of the holy ghost and that was such a neat experience.  I just want to testify that that gift is so real.  We are so privlieged to be able to have the companionship of the holy ghost in our lives. 

Also we have a great family of investigators.  The dad is named Marcelino, and his wife is Carmen.  They have 3 daughters, adn one of them is 10 (tracey) and they all want to get baptized! the problem is that marcelino is married to his ex wife, and she doesnt want to divorce him... so for the moment he cant progress because he cant comply with the law of chastity.  So if you all could pray that we can find a solution so that he can get divorced it would be so great.  I know that heavenly father will prepare a way for them to be able to take this step in their lives.

Alright so for the spiritual thought this week... Well lets just say that Elder Drescher has had quite the humbling experience this week.  First I just want to say that I love my companion so much.  He is such a good missionary and he is just awesome.  But from the start... he sometimes isnt the nicest person to me.  And we have had some struggles off and on.  And this past week I was really struggling because I was trying so hard to be the best companion possible and to love him and to serve him and he just was still being rude and selfish.  And then I read 1 Nephi 19:9 about how the savior was treated so badly but still suffered for us and still loves us.  And then I read the sermon on the mount about how when someone smites our cheek we should turn the other also.  And then i had a nice little come to jesus moment.  and I realized that Christlike love is unconditional.  When we feel real charity, we dont serve others or treat them good because we want them to do the same to us, we do it because we really and truly love them and want what is best for them in spite of whatever bad things they may do to us.  And really.. .this type of love is the easiest way to do things.  Because if we are just looking to get our own personal gain or to change others we will never accomplish it.  The only thing we can control or affect is our own thoughts and actions.  And as we turn to the savior, and really love those around us(no matter what they may say or do to us) that is when we truly become free from the negative feelings and all that bad stuff that we want to avoid.

So that has been what I have learned this week.  Just love.  Love one another as the savior loves you.  And it is sometimes easier said than done... but as we do it day by day we will find that it is truly the best way.

So show a little more love this week yall! and together we will become a little more like the savior.  i am so grateful for the love he extends to all of us.

 New means of transportation for him, Moto Taxi.
                                                                                 Saturday night "futbol" team
Alexis Baptism

September 7, 2015
Well first off... I have officially completed my training as a missionary.  As of yesterday, I completed 12 weeks in the mission field and am now a trained Elder.  But yesterday I also was called to be a trainer! So tomorrow I will receive a brand new missionary and will be responsible to help him adjust to missionary life. I definitely did not expect this at all, but I am excited for the opportunity to learn and grow and to serve my new companion.  If any of you have any advice for me as to how to be a good leader or trainer, please feel free to give it to me :)

This week was an awesome one!  We have seen a lot of progress here and we can really see the hand of the Lord in the work.  One thing that we saw this week was that we had tons of people come to church today, the majority of their own accord without us even inviting them.  It really shows that the Lord is touching peoples hearts and giving them the desire to come unto him.  I can definitely see his hand in the work here.

I dont have much time today... But I just want to share one quick spiritual thought.  ONe of the sister missionaries this week said something that hit me hard.  She said "our potentional is eternal".  Really its so true.  Our potential is more than we could ever imagine.  And when we come unto christ, he helps us see that full potential and be able to reach it little by little.  SLowly but surely we become more and more like him, until one day, we will finally be able to reach our full potential.  I feel so grateful for the opportunity to progress towards my potential here in the mission, as well as to help others realize theres with the help of the savior.

I just want to finish by saying that I know that my savior lives and that he loves each and every one of us.  Im grateful for the opportnity to be his representative in this time, and I testify of the truthfulness of his gospel and of this great work.

                                   Last visit with his Trainer/Companion with Soccer friends

September 14, 2015 

Well first things first.. I got my new companion on Tuesday and boy he is INCREDIBLE. His name is Elder Nuñez and he is from Argentina.  He is 21 and he was taught by the missionaries and baptized when he was 13.  We are already best friends and I just love him so much.  He has such a strong testimony and spirit about him.  And he speaks english like a champ!! But those of you that speak spanish know that Argentines have a very distinct accent... and yes I have already started to talk like him.  Everyone laughs at me all the time haha.  But It has been such a great experience to get to know him and to learn from him.

So funny story this week.. Some elders from our district had a baptism on saturday, but their investigator wanted warm water.  Well in Peru... there isnt a whole lot of warm water.  So what did we do? We decided to heat up the baptismal font using a nice little camp stove and pouring the water in a bucket at a time... Boy it was pretty comical.  But with lots of faith and propane we were able to get some lukewarm water for her and she had a great baptism haha :)

But anyways... This week I have been thinking a lot about our relationship with God.  We have been teaching for 2 months now an hermana named Clara.  And when we met her,  she was an Atheist.  she didnt believe that God existed.  But she knew that she wanted something more in her life.  And little by little we have been helping her develop a relationsihp with her Heavenly Father.  And really thats where we have to start when we want to get closer to God.  We have to understand that he is literally our Father in Heaven.  And we knew him before this life.  We just cant remember that right now.  But every day we can take one little step towards him through prayer and scripture study, and little by little we can remember him and feel his presence in our life.  And as we have done this with Clara we have seen such a change in her life and in her countenance.  And this week she told us that she was praying and she received a feeling in her heart that she knows God is real and that he loves her.  Man it was the greatest moment ever.  I am so greatful for the opportunity to get to help people develop that relationship.

My spiritual thought kinda goes along with that.  Yesterday we watched a devotional from New York given by Elder Clayton of the seventy.  And his wife talked about how in Argentina there is a zoo where you can go and pet lions.  And the way the train the lions is from the moment they are born, they live with dogs.  But when they are born, the dogs are bigger than the lions, so the dogs assume superiority.  So the lions grow up their whole life being afraid of the dogs, not knowing that with the flick of a paw they could crush pretty much anything in their path.  And she related it to us and said that a lot of times we dont realize our full potential as sons and daughters of Heavenly Father.  Our potential is so great, and we have the power to crush whatever obstacle may be in our path with just a flick of a paw.  We just have to remember our potential.  And she said something that hit me hard "just because they werent behaving in a brave or regal way doesnt mean they ceased to be lions".  No matter what your current or past situation is, nothing will every change the fact that you are a son or daughter of God.  So use that knowledge and crush whatver obstacle the adversary may throw in your path!
 Dallin practicing with his Keyboard with some of the children from the Branch in Cartavio

                            Dallin with his new companion 

September 21, 2015

Hope things are good wherever you are and that you are loving life as much as I am down here in Peru.  Things are so great here and we have had an incredible week!

I continue to love Elder Nuñez more and more everyday and I am learning so much from him.  He is doing so well and is already an incredible missionary :)  We have had a great week where we have worked hard every single day, and he has such a great attitude about it.  And it has been awesome because every night we have come home just exhausted, which is a sign that we have given everything to the work that day :) I love it.

First I need to tell you guys about Cristhian! I have been meaning to for about a month now and I never have enough time haha.. but he is 9 years old and has grown up in the church, but has enver taken the decision to be baptized until recently.  So we have been tecahing him for the past two months, and he is now ready and prepared to take the step of baptism on Saturday! We are so excited for this day and it will be so special with him :)

Second we have Milagros.  Milagros is going to be baptized the next weekend (October 3rd).  Milagros has been meeting with the missionaries off and on for about a year and a half now.  She is 15, and she goes to seminary and comes to church every week, but she has wanted to be sure of her testimony before she committed to be baptized.  We had some really spiritual experiences this past week as we read the scriptures together and she has made the decision to be baptized on the 3rd, and we are so excited for her as well. :) 

Clara, who I talked about last week, continues to progress spiritually and to develop a stronger realtionship with her heavenly father.  I promise each of you that no matter what your circumstance is, that Heavenly Father loves you and knows you.  And that little by little you can draw close to him and feel his presence in your life.

Today I was studying a talk from Dallin H. Oaks in the Ensign from August of 2013 about receiving revelation.  It was such a good talk and helped me a ton.  One thing that I learned was that we cant force the spirit.  We cant tell Heavenly Father when he should give us revelation or the way he should speak to us.  We can only invite the spirit into our lives and then have the faith that he is going to guide us.  And for me, this has been a struggle for me a lot of my life.  I always want to receive a clear answer before I act or make a decision.  But I have learned that most often, he will give me the answer after I choose to act.  If I am living worthily, I have a good pattern of prayer and scripture study, and I make a decision, he will then bless me with either a confirmation of that decision or he will correct my decision and guide me to the right choice.  I promise that each of us can receive revelation, but it will always come in the Lords time and his way.

                                        Holding a Family Home Evening with a local family.

September 28th, 2015

We have had another incredible week here in cartavio and i am loving life and living the dream :)

First thing first... on saturday we had a BAPTISM!! Our amigo Cristhian entered in the waters of baptism on saturday and was confirmed on sunday.  it was such a great experience.  I was so honored to be able to be the one to baptize him.  And after he was baptized they closed the window to the font and me and him just stood there and he just started crying.  And when I asked him how he felt he just had the biggest smile and said that he had never felt so clean or special in his life.  It was awesome to see that even a 9 year old boy can feel the spirit so strong and have a good experience like that.

This week we have another baptism scheduled for Saturday! Milagros, who is 15 is going to take this same step and we are so excited for her.  She is doing so well, and her cousin (who is preparing to leave on a mission) is going to be the one to bapptize her.  It will be a special experience for her and her family and we are looking forward to it.

Also we have Clara our investigator who didnt believe in god, and she is doing so well.  She and her boyfriend have made the decision to get married October 10th and she wants to be baptized the next week! It will be so awesome and it has been so cool to see the miracle of conversion in her life.  Heavenly father is so real and he changes lives for the better :)

For my spiritual thought this week... we have the greatest opportuntiy this week to have general conference! Not only do we get to hear from living prophets, but we get to sustain three new apostles that will be called on saturday.  I encourage all of you to take the time and reallywatch conference.  when the lords servants speak, it is as if he himself were speaking (see Doctrine and Covenants 1:38) and I am definitely looking forward to this opportunity to hear the words the lord has prepared for his children.  DONT MISS OUT. :)

(Every 6 months The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, meets in a General Conference to hear the Leaders of the Church teach us things we need to know to improve ourselves. This happens the first week of October and then again in April. )

                                           Chisthian and the Elders before the baptism.

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