Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Here We Are Again!

     Hello Family!  Here we are again, just the same as usual!  This week, not much happened, it was just a lot of missionary work, although we did walk a ton this week!  But unfortunatley, things have been slowing down here, but I want them to speed back up!  Although it has been fairly easy this week, that´s not what I want!  I want to bust my butt and do all that I can to help the people here!  I just hope that my excitement can turn in to actions by the people we are teaching.  

     The reason that things seem to have slowed down here, is because everyone seems to be at a standstill.  We have about 10 investigators that we are teaching on a regular basis, but only one is progressing.  (Which means the others aren´t keeping their commitments and coming to chruch and all that.)  The biggest thing for them to do is to come to chruch with us, but out of our 10 investigators that we have regularly, a big fat 0 came to church this week.  We haven´t had time to visit them to figure out what happened, but I have a feeling that it is just taking that first step to walk to the chapel.  I know that it is a bit far for some families, but isn´t that what sacrifice is about?  I just wish that they could realize how blessed they could be, if only they could keep their commitments!  I just want to do all I can for them, but if they don´t pull their part, nothing is going to happen.  I am only here to give them the opportunity to hear about the gospel, it is up to them to decide for themselves if they want to accept it.  It is so hard for me, because i just want to enter their mind and say, "Wake up!  The Key to Eternal Happiness is right in front of you!"  But of course I can´t do that.  I guess that is why I feel like I am not doing all I can, because I can´t see the results of my work.  But if I just keep focusing on the right things to do, and let them do their part, everything will be fine.  I think I just kind of gave myself counsel while writing this...  So yeah, those are my thoughts this week!

     Some news about our Zone.  So Momos is one of the biggest Zones in the mission, and because of that, we are going to split into 2 Zones!  I´m still going to be in Momos, but a lot of the other Elders are headed to a new Zone called San Bartolo.  Plus, Elder Kinghorn, who is the AP right now, is going to come here and be a Zone Leader!  So we shall see how that goes!  But I have a really good feeling about our new Zone, so hopefully everything turns out!  

     I don´t know, I guess I am just a little frustruated that nothing is really going according to plan, but I guess this is just me learning to have patience and to let the Lord do what he has planned in his own time.  It really has been a reflective week, and I really feel like I have grown a lot.  So even though we didn´t make progress with investigators this week, I made progress with myself, which is important too, right?  So I guess this week wasn´t all for not!

     Even though things aren´t going as I want them, it hasn´t hurt my testimony in the slightest!  I still know that this chruch is true with every part of my being and every part of my heart.  I am so grateful to have this Gospel in my life, and I can´t even begin to imagine where I would be without it.  I have such a strong love for my brother Jesus Christ, but I know that his love for me is far above what I have for me.  I just hope that one day I will be able to show how much I really do appreciate all he has done for me.  I guess I am started now, by being a missionary, but I still have a life ahead of me, and I hope I cn do everything I can to live up to it!  I want to live my life so that when I finally get to see my Savior and my Heavenly Father again, I can say proudly, "I have done all I can, and I have no regrets."  I hope that we can all strive to be better people in our lives. 

     Thank you always for your support!  I love each and every one of you!  Until Next Time!

     - Elder Stuart

     P.S. Scripture is not really a scripture.  It´s a talk.  If you can, look up Jeffrey R. Holland´s talk "Saftey for the Soul" from October 2009.  Sends chills down my spine every time!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Happy New Years!

    Hello Family, and Happy 2013!  Time just seems to be flying, and look now, we are already in another year!  That sure was quick!  This past year was really crazy with everything that went on, but I have a feeling that this next year will be just as crazy!  Especially because I am going to be in the mission the whole year!  That is just crazy to think about!  But I hope that this year will be great for you guys, because I know that it is going to be great for me!  I hope that we can continue to feel the blessings of the Lord in our lives, and that we can remember him throughout the year!

    After we FINALLY got back to Pancà, we knew that we were going to have to work our butts off to make this week count.  So that is exactly what we did!  Even though everything didn`t turn out as we hoped, I felt good about it, because I knew that I did all that I could to make up for the time that we lost.  We ended up staying out until about 9:00 each night, which is really late for an Aldea (An area like Pancà)  We usually are supposed to come in at like 7:00, but we wanted to work more, so we stayed out later.  I hope that our extra work has payed off!  

     There aren`t really good stories for this week, because we missed a lot of the appointments that we had planed, so we really just went and visited a lot of the members and less actives here.  It was really cool, because one of the less actives that we have been visiting for pretty much the whole time finally came to church for the first time!  Even though it was to bless her baby girl, it still counts!  I was hoping that she would get up and bear her testimony about it all, but she didn`t unfortunately...  But we talked to her afterwards, and she seems really glad that she came to have her girl blessed.  So hopefully that means that she will come next week!  

     The President has issued a challenge for us as missionaries.  We are going to try and read the entire BoM before the next General Conference.  But not just read it, but to really study it.  We all have a notebook to but notes and feelings that we have.  I really like reading it and studying it this way.  I mean, I have read it before, but to really study it means that I am able to grasp more and more about the BoM, and I really like it!

     So this week wasn`t all that I hoped it was going to be, but hopefully this next week will!  Until Next Week!

      - Elder Stuart

     P.S. The scripture is 1 Nephi 8:30.  But it really is just better to read the whole chapter.  And if you can, look up Elder Bednar`s talk on the Tree of Life!  

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

A Week of Celebration!

Hello Family! I don`t know why, but it seems like it has been forever since I`ve talked to you guys! I guess talking on the phone does that to you! It just seemed so normal, but now we are back to just emailing, which is just okay, not the same though! But I should tell you guys that this week has been really great!

So we didn`t get to get back to Pancà until Wednesday morning, so the 25th was actually kind of boring. We did go contact a bit in Momos, but it isn`t the same as being in your area. So yeah, it kind of sucked. But on Wednesday, we went to a members house to celebrate Christmas, and we bought fireworks to set off! It was way fun! And to top it all off, I finally got to open my presents, about a day and a half later than I wanted. But better late then never! I loved the presents! I have been craving American candy for a long time, because the candy here just isn`t the same. But one of the best things you sent was the Conference Edition of the Ensign. Thank you so much for it!! I`ve already read it cover to cover twice now, that just shows how much I have been looking forward to it! Thank you all so much for the presents!

But after that, it was time to get back to work. This week, we still focused a lot on the birth of Jesus Christ, because it is still the Christmas season, and we thought it would still work! It is so amazing to talk about the birth of Christ with the people here. Because even if they are members, less actives, investigators, or just random people on the street, almost every person here is willing to talk about Christ, especially the birth of Christ. So it has been a really successful week, and spiritual too!

We have been working a lot with a family a member reffered to us. They are a mom and two kids, with the Dad in the States. But they are really open to us, and we even mentioned baptism this week, and they weren`t totally off guard! So we have a goal for a date on the 26 of January, so hopefully that will work out!

This week was a little rough at the beginning, because after talking to you guys, and Christmas and everything, I was a little homesick. But like President Hinckley`s Dad said, "Forget yourself and go to work." That really helped me out, and I got through the week fine! It really has been a great week here, and I am ready for a new year here! Happy New Years everybody! Until Next Time!

- Elder Stuart

P.S. The scripture for this week is Ezra 10:4. I thought I should throw you guys some Old Testament goodies!