Sunday, February 12, 2017

Traveling....Again! February 4, 2017

Hello Everyone! Well yes, this week was our week once again to travel to the Istmo down to Juchitan and Salina Cruz to do our training meetings that we do each change. It has become somewhat of a routine now yet it is still fun to be able to do it and see all of the missionaries. This week we got to see every missionary down there and it was fun to see the progress that is going on. It was also fun to be able to be with President and Sister Madsen each day and to be able to learn about them even more and learn from them and their examples. On Monday we drove down to Salina Cruz, I dont know what is happening but for the first time on that curvy highway we had to stop so that I could get the carsickness out of me. It was weird because I have always grown up on the Peterson Pony Express where on trips we didnt stop for anything, so stopping was a first. I think these highways down here are finally taking a toll on me, I dont know how President and Sister Madsen do it but those roads are crazy, it feels like a 5 hour roller coaster but in the end we made it down without anything happening. On Tuesday we got the chance to train the new missionaries that were assigned down there in the Istmo. It was fun to see their progress and just how prepared they all were before coming out on the mission. Right after we got done training them we went out on splits with the Zone Leaders in Salina Cruz, I had the chance to go with Elder Henrie from Pleasant Grove. We worked hard and we were able to see the fruits that they are harvesting in their labors there. On Wednesday morning we were able to drive over to Juchitan which is about an hour away from Salina Cruz, as we attended the Leadership Council there. It was a lot better this time because President Madsen had his voice back and was able to direct the council. We talked about the new schedule and we were able to put it into action, now we will be getting up at 7 in the morning instead of 6:30 and we will be going out to work at 10 instead of 11, and doing our language and companionship study during the day when we dont have lessons instead of cramming them all into the morning schedule before we leave. We are all pretty excited for the extra hour of sleep that we will be getting and it will help my companion and I too to be able to sleep a lot earlier now instead of really late. The general authorities are really trying to teach us the principle of agency here, helping us to learn how to use our time wisely instead of being forced into a rigorous schedule. I know that these changes will prepare us for the life after the mission now. After the council I went out on splits with Elder Ringle from Logan. It was fun to work with him and I was able to learn a lot from him about how to love the people more than anything. The next morning we went to the Multi-Zone Conference there in Juchitan. President Madsen talked about the obedience, it was powerful and it was something that all of us needed. It has been one of the hardest things to see disobedient missionaries here and I know that it has been harder for President. He taught us the importance to be obedient and he lead me to find and study Doctrine and Covenants 93 and find these two verses that talk about obedience to the commandments of God. 28 He that keepeth his commandments receiveth truth and light, until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things. 39 And that wicked one cometh and taketh away light and truth, through disobedience, from the children of men, and because of the tradition of their fathers. This was such a powerful training that he did with us. In the end our obedience determines the glory that we can recieve. The Book of Mormon teaches that the more we keep the commandments of God, the more we can be blessed and prosper in our lives. This is even more important to this missionary work. Because we are always looking and needing Light and Truth, and if we arent obedient then it is taken away by Satan!! President Madsen went on to teach us that more than anything, our obedience should not be out of fear to loosing these blessings, but it should be out of our love for the Savior. It is something that I am trying to learn and trying to improve on so that I can share this love with other people that need it. Now, our week wasnt all just traveling and trainings, but on Sunday night before we went home we were able to finally find Maria, and with her was her daughter Natalie. Anyways we found out that Maria was having a hard time letting us in because the landlord didnt like us coming in through her yard. So we invited Maria to come to the church so that we could teach her. Her daughter tagged along too. Maria has a trouble with reading and it has been hard to be able to teach her, yet she has been so faithful in reading the pamphlets that we give her. When we got there she asked us "What is Revelation?" We started our lesson with that and in the end we somehow ended up on the topic of the Gift of the Holy Ghost. (I know it was through the guidance of the Holy Ghost that we were able to do it though) This whole time Natalie had been quiet and reading in the Bible and when we asked if they wanted to recieve this gift Maria said that she needed it! So we asked if they would be baptized and they both said yes. We asked Natalie to say the closing prayer and her prayer was the most powerful that I have heard. She thanked Heavenly Father for providing her the way in which she could correct her life and get back on the track where she knew that she needed to be. It was hard to leave them for a week but tonight we are going to go back and teach them again. We know that Heavenly Father has been protecting them and we know that they are ready and prepared by Him as well. I know that Heavenly Father is our literal Father in Heaven, and that he is always watching us and preparing the way before us to be able to succeed gloriously.
Dinner with Elder Henrie and Elder Castro in Salina Cruz
Splits with Elder Thomas and Elder Garcia in Juchitan
We found a member in Juchitan who works construction and has his own company. In his construction he has dug up thousands of artifacts, anyways here is a few that he has at his house. He calls it his Lamanite Museum because all of this stuff dates back to their time!!

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