5 October 2015
Well... I can officially say that I already want time to slow down. I definitely dont feel like I have been here for five months...and as I watched conference this last weekend and realized my mission is basically 1/4 over I was definitely a little bit sad... but we have had an incredible week here and I am so excited to have another one here in Cartavio!:)
Well first, the highlight of the week was a Baptism that we had yesterday!! our dear friend Milagros was baptized yesterday after general conference, and man it was a sweet experience. She was baptized by her cousin, who is leaving on a mission to Lima, Peru this month, and it was cool to see one of her own family be able to help her take this step. But afterwards we asked her to share her feelings, and she came to me because she was super nervous and didnt know what to say. And she told me "I feel super good but i have no idea how to describe it". and It was cool because I had a 30 second opportunity to show her that in that moment she was feeling the spirit confirming that she had made the right choice. And that now, having received the gift of the holy ghost, she is always able to have that feeling as long as she is keeping the commandments. I feel so so blessed to have received the gift of the holy ghost, and i have strengthened my relationship with the spirit so much throughout the past 5 months. And i have truly learned, and testify with by personal experience, that when we live in the way heavenly father wants us to we will always have the spirit to help us. Its so great :)
Also, as far as the people we are teaching, we had a pretty crazy week as we tried to get everything together so that Clara and her fiancee can get married this month. After a lot of running around, lots of praying, and a little bit of paperwork, we finally nailed down everything so that they will be married on the 18th of this month. They are so excited and it will be so awesome. And then Claras baptism will be the week after and shes just so great.
General Confertence this week was... WOW. it was incredible. There was so much that I learned. BUt i think the one thing that i took away from it the most was from President Uchtdorfs talk in the very first session, about how to be a disciple of christ. He said we need to simplify our approach to discipleship, and just do the little things that draw us closer to him. BUt the one thing that he said that hit me really hard was that we dont need to be anything more to start to become what he wants us to be. Sometimes I struggle on the mission feeling like Im not good enough and that I dont know what i am doing... But I got a lot of comfort knowing that Heavenly Father has called me the way that I am, and he has a plan of what he wants me to be. and as a do the little things and come closer to him, he will help me reach my full potential. I know that is true for each one of us. God has a plan for each of you and a potential that is greater than you can ever imagine :) just trust and him and come unto him, as it says in Ether 12:27, and he will help you to become stronger than you ever imagined.
Love you all so much! have a great week!
12 October 2015
Hey yall! This week was a killer one but it was also pretty crazy! We were so busy every single day which is stressful but also the greatest feeling ever :)
Well probably the highlight of my week was last night. Because I played the piano, they shipped me up about 2 hours north of my area to play for a fireside last night. We were in an area called Guadalupe, and man the fireside was so awesome. It was basically just a bunch of musical numbers and mormon messages and testimonies and the spirit was just so strong. Hermana Marler should be putting pictures on the mission blog soon so go to kurtandkathymarler.blogspot.com if you want to check them out :) But one of the things that really stood out to me was one of the testimonies. He talked about how the book of mormon isnt super fancy on the outside, but its whats on the inside that counts. And he said its just like each one of us. Its whats on the inside that counts. And lots of times we spend hours fixing our outward appearance and trying to look attractive, but we should focus more on fixing our interior and making our spirit attractive. I thought it was a really good thought and put a lot into perspective. It is definitely what is on the inside that counts.
I also gained such a strong testimony of how big of an affect music plays in our lives. Last night we felt the spirit so strong as we listened to divine music, but today as we were driving through the streets we heard music that was not very good music. ANd the spirit was driven away so fast. We definitely should always make sure that the music we are listening to is the type that will invite the spirit, not the type that will drive it away.
I also learned a lot about faith this week. We have been working so that Clara can get married on Friday and baptized on Saturday. We have been busting our tails pretty much every day to make sure everything goes smooth. This week we even resorted to going to the mayors house and knocking on his door to ask for his help. And we have done everything in our power. So now we just place our trust in heavenly father and have faith that he will do what we cant :) And we have faith that they will be able to take this important step this weekend and come unto christ. We are so excited for both Clara and her fiancee. Any prayers for them would be so appreciated to help ensure that this special day goes through as planned :)
Overall, its been another great week, and i am so stoked for this one as well. Hope you are all doing so great and I love you so much! Have a great week!
They found bubbles and were playing with the Children of the families he was teaching
19 October 2015
Hey yall! This week we had cambios again, which is really crazy! Time is going by so so fast and I cant believe that six weeks has already passed with Elder Nunez! We are doing so well here in cartavio, and lukcliy we have at least six weeks more together! we are so ready to work hard and leave everything here in the next transfer :)
This past week was a good one, but as always it had its trials. For Clara and Andy, our trial is proving to be patience. Peruvian paperwork is not a very qucik process, and we have yet to find a firm date for their marriage. it is pretty sad and discouraging at times, but we are keeping a positive attitude and putting our faith in heavenly father. A cool experience this week though was that Clara invited her mom, sister, and brother in law to listen to us. We had an awesome lesson on the sabbath day, which led to them all wanting to come to church. So yesterday we went and they loved it! It is cool to see pèople get so excited about the gospel and receive so many blessings that they share it with others, and we are going to work with their whole family to help them progress and come unto christ.
We also have two new investigators, Brenda and Ximeni! They are both 17 and they are referrals from a member who is their boss. they are both so excited and look forward so much to when we come to teach them. they get so stoked to come to church and for every new lesson we have. They are learning and growing so well, and you can already see the difference the gospel is making in their lives. We are looking forward to continuing to help them receive the blessings of this great message.
This week, we had the primary program in sacrament meeting and it was really so special. each little child shared a sweet testimony, and it was so simple but so powerful. It really hit me that the gospel is really so simple. A lot of times we over complicate it, but these little kids reminded me that the simple truths of the gospel are where we should base our testimony. And the feelings i received yesterday as i listened to them reassured me that I really am a member of the restored gospel of jesus christ.
We also had a conference with an area seventy this week in Trujillo which was incredible. One of the things that he taught us was the importance of our ATTITUDE. We need to SMILE ALL THE TIME. wake up every morning and tell yourself that you are grateful for today and that you are a happy person. And you will become that happy person. Just remember to smile and look on the bright side and it will change your whole day.
So this week i want you all to smile. :) If you need motivation to smile just think of how much the savior loves you. Its a lot. I testify of the truth that he lives and loves each one of us so very much.
Have an incredible week!
I love you all so much!
The Primary from the Cartavio Ward
He was holding his lunch for the day
26 October 2015
Hey yall! Hows it going? Greetings from your favorite gringo. Things down here in Cartavio are just LO MAXIMO. I am loving life and I just wake up every single day thanking my heavenly father for the opportunity to be here and for every great blessing that he gives me. :)
Well on an interesting note.. this week I ate goat, rabbit, and squid. I think the squid was my favorite. :) but the goat was a nice second.
Anyways... this week has been a little bit crazy, but also so good. We werent able to spend a ton of time in our area, due to meetings and my companion traveling for his visa, but the time we did spend here was so productive. It has really been such a great week full of spiritual experiences. :)
As far as andy and clara goes... we are still waiting on paperwork. Its frustrating but the lord is teaching us patience. Just please keep them in your prayers :) we know that we will see a miracle here soon.
Brenda and Ximena are still doing so great! they both came to a baptism that the other elders from the district had this past week and they loved it. ANd then they came to church yesterday and had such a great experience. It is awesome to see how the lord really prepares people for this message. And we can already see such a difference in their lives and in their countenance. It is so incredible to see the change the gospel makes in peoples lives. :)
This week we are trying to search for new people to teach in addition to strengthening those we already know. And the best way that we do that is through the members of the branch. Really it is the greatest when someone invites us to teach their friend or family member. So if you know someone that could use a little more light in their life, call your misssionaries! Help them get the blessings that heavenly father wants to bless them with. :)
This week i had the awesome experience to go the the temple and i learned so much there. One of the impressions that i got was how we have to choose every single day to follow the savior. It is a commitment that we have to renew every single moment if we really want to follow him. And the more we do it, the easier it gets. This week i am going to really focus on dedicating everything i have to him, and really consecrating myself to this work.
Another thought that i had this week is in Leviticus 26. It talks to us about the sabbath day, and one of my favorite verses is verse 12. WE are promised that the lord will walk with us if we keep the sabbath holy. That is a blessng that i know i NEED in my life. And thats one way I can be assured that I will be walking with my savior, by keeping the sabbath day holy. Its so simple, but such a great blessing.
I hope you all have a great week and dont ever forget that I love you all :)
At the Temple with Elder Nunez
Breakfast --Flipping Tortilla
okay so as i am writing this and i looked at the calendar and saw that on thursday i hit six months in the mission i got really sad... I already wish I had more time here because i love it so much. But thats okay haha :)
This week was INCREDIBLE. As always. I loved it so much and so much good happened :) Lets see... to start off... you guys might remember that i talked about marcelino and his family about a month ago. And he still hasnt been able to get his divorce figured out, but when we visited them this week they told us that they want their daughter, Treisy, to get baptized. She is 10 and she made the decision all on her own and is now reading the book of mormon and praying every day and is just super motivated and ready to learn. We are planning her baptism for the 28th of this month and I am super excited for it. :)
Also, we have some GREAT news with Andy and Claras marriage. We went to the city building this morning and signed the last paperwork and set their date for the 13th of this month, and then Clara will have her baptism on the next day. We are so excited for them and it will be so so so great :) Really they are two special people. And every night I just thank my heavenly father for the opportunity to know them. I know that they are part of the reason why I am supposed to be here in Peru.
We are also focusing a lot on finding new investigators this week. So hopefully next week I will have lots of new stories about new people that we met :)
For my spiritual thought... I have been thinking a lot about charity and love this past week. And it has made me really reevaluate my own heart and my own self. A lot of times I am really willing to help people, but I do it for selfish reasons such as recognition or recompense. But when we really have charity, we are willing to do whatever it takes to help someone just because we love them. I have been really working on trying to see people as Christ sees them, with a perfect love. ANd as I have focused on this, I have just been so much happier. The more we love and serve those around us, the better we ourselves become. I am like always smiling now because I just always feel love for those around me. In Moroni 7:48 it teaches us that if we pray for the gift of charity, we will receive it and feel this love for people, and i testify of that truth. So this week pray to have a little bit more charity and to feel the love that the savior does for those around you. And i promise your week will be 100 times different.
also... I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH:) thanks so much for all that you do for me. And anything you ever need just tell me and I will do it for you :)
have a great week!!
Dressed as a Factory worker in the Sugar Cane Factory
Getting ready to play a little Futsol
Elder Nunez and me at the "Waters of Cartavio"
A reference to the "Waters of Mormon" Mosiah 18
9 November 2015
This week was incredible! We worked super hard and it really paid off!
The greatest part of the whole week was... drumroll please... ANDY AND CLARA ARE GETTING MARRIED:) Friday is the big day where they will tie the knot. And then we were able to sit down and plan claras baptism for this saturday :) And she asked me to be the one to baptize her, which will be such an honor. We are all so excited for this day and it really is a miracle. I willl neverforget the first time we visited her and she didnt even feel comfortable praying because she didnt believein god, and now she has a testimony as strong as anybody. It just really shows that if you are willing to put in the effort, and really want to receive him, christ willwork miracles and willchange your life.
Also we taught Brenda and Ximena this week and they want to be baptized as well!! They are so excited and we were able to set their baptismal date for the 21 of this month :) we are so excited and we had a great experience at church with them yesterday. They both expressedhow when you are at church you feel something you dont feel anywhere else, and it really is so true.
Another miracle. So remember my first convert, Leodan? well his dad isnt a member.and hes always had a problem with alcohol...and when he is drunk he isnt a very nice person and would do some not very nice things to his family. BUt a couple weeks ago he found leodans book of mormona and started reading it, and as he read it he felt something different in his heart. He started wanting to change. And now he is changing. This Past week he didnt drink at all! And he has been being a better husband and father. And he wants to follow christ and keep changing and become a better person. WOW! another miracle. The book of mormon is so powerful, and really changes lives all on its own.
My spiritual thought for this week is about our hearts. Helaman 3:35 talks about how we can purify and sanctify ourselves if we give our hearts to God. When it talks about our hearts, its talking about our own will and desires. If we can just humble ourselves and give our desires
to heavenly father, submit every thing to him, we will feel so much joy and will be púrified and sanctified. So this week give your heart to heavenly father. Do his will. Give him everything(through prayer) and he will give you even more:)
I love you all somuch. Dont forgetto SMILE :)
Elder Nunez, Andy and Elder Drescher Climbing a tree
Burning his tie for the 6 month mark
16 November 2015
Well.. this week was definitely such a historic one for my mission. I did so many awesome things!! First.. I got to kill a duck! Yes. A real live duck. My pensionista had four that she was going to killl.. and i thought it sounded interesting so she showed me how and handed me the knife and i killed it. Yes it was pretty historic. (pictures to come)
Next historic thing. I WAS A WITNESS AT A WEDDING. And not just any wedding.. but Andy and Claras wedding. And man it was so special. They were so happy and it felt like we were in a fairy tale or something. all of their family was there and it was just such a great day. So happy for them.
and then the next day... CLARA WAS BAPTIZED. Wow I can honestly say that i never thought that this day would come. We experienced trial after trial and setback after setback, but after lots of time, tears, prayers and fasting, she was finally able to be baptized on Saturday. It was such a special baptismal service. And it was cool because everything was trying to go wrong. We could see satan working hard to stop it. But then we could also see the hand of the Lord helping everything to work out in the end. And it did. Last night i was reading my patriarchal blessing and it talks about how I will see the miracle of conversion on my mission. I have truly seen that with Clara and I know that she is part of the reason as to why I was sent here.
We also have been working really hard with Brenda and Ximena this week. They are doing super well, but are having some difficulties recognizing answers from the spirit. They want to be baptized, but they want to wait a little bit because they feel like they havent quite gained a testimony yet. So we are going to push their baptism back a couple weeks and work this week on helping them to recognize the spirit. One thing that i have learned working with them is that we have to be actively seeking for an answer. We cant just sit back and expect the spirit to hit us with the answer. We have to put forth our effort and work for the answer, and then it will come.
Also this week I was able to have an interchange with my amigasso Elder Oviatt, my district leader. It was so great. And i learned a lot. One of the things that i learned was the importance of staying calm. A lot of times i get stressed easily and when i get stressed its hard to focus and to keep the spirit with me. But when i stay calm it is a lot easier. It reminds me of the scripture in John 14:26(i think) when Jesus says he would leave peace with us. We just need to remember some times to take a deep breath, trust in the lord, and calm down. And then everything gets a lot easier.
I love you all so much and hope you have an incredible week :)
First the Wedding
Then Clara's Baptism
I want one of these....MotoTaxi
23 November 2015
Well I cant believe it but this week is officially TURKEY DAY. I am still trying to convince our pensionista to make us turkey and mashed potatoes... With faith miracles are possible right? Haha but really I hope you all have a great holiday and enjoy your week :)
This week has been exhausting but incredible. We rounded out our indicators last night and we ended up teaching a grand total of 40 lessons in the past week. (to put it in perspective we usually average about 20-25). It was awesome! We were teaching and busy every second and it felt so great. I love coming home at night exhausted because I know that I worked my hardest that day. And really our hard work this past week has paid off and we are seeing success.
The biggest and greatest news is that Treisy is getting baptized this week!! we are so excited. And she really showed yesterday just how much she wants to be baptized. Her family all got sick yesterday morning so they didnt come to church, but she came all by herself with her scriptures in hand and stayed all three hours! I honestly have never heard of a 10 year old coming to church by themself, but she proved just how ready she is to be baptized on Saturday. I am so excited to share that special day with her :)
Also we have Brenda and Ximena, as Ive told you about. And they have been doing well this week. They know they want to be baptized, but they just want to wait until they feel more ready. So we are just trying to encourage them and give them time to get a stronger desire. But they introduced us to their friend Isabel.. she is 18 and she has such a strong desire! She told us the very first lesson that she wants to be baptized and follow christ and so we are working hard with her to help her prepare to take this step. its interesting how the Lord works. Maybe in this moment Brenda and Ximena arent ready, but through them we are meeting others who are ready to recieve the gospel.
Something that has really stood out to me this week is the importance and divine nature of the family. As we have visited Andy and Clara I have been so impressed at how well they have been able to progress on their own. They honestly dont need that much help from us because they are helping each other to strenghten their testimony and to follow Christ. It really has confirmed the fact that the family is the best place to learn and apply the teachings of the gospel. ANd i have also seen that their family has been so strengthened as they have applied the gospel in their life. I testify that families are called of God and that the gospel blesses families. Hw... read the family a proclamation to the world. Such an inspired document that really outlines the purpose that God has for families.
Love you all so much and hope you have an incredible week!
Plaza De Armas Trujillo