This week I have prepared myself a little bit better so that I can write the letter that you all deserve. Although it might be full of gramatical errors and typos, at the very least it will reflect in large manner the week that I have had. Where to start.
Monday – After leaving the cyber we went to viña to pick up more boxes of books of mormon and to buy some things for our studies. (The chapter of preach my gospel that we are studying as a mission is chapter 2 and it is about effective studying). We then headed back to our area and our apartment and my companion showed me how to make a lemon pie. It is not overly complicated, it has a cookie type of crust with a filling of sweetened condensed milk mixed with lemon juice topped of with a cooked meringue. It was very delicious.
AS to other things we also organized study binders. So I actually have all of my thoughts organized now. Because I always took notes but it was never anything overly organized, at least for the moment it is.
Also when we got home the night after a family home evening where we ate the lemon pie, I took ofv my shoes and realized that my foot was brown. Absolutely coverd in dust and dirt, the result of a hole that I have in my shoe 🙂 I feel very successful for having put holes in my shoes from walking so much.
Tuesday- we had meetings in the morning that went well. Just organizational things about the zone. Then I had intercambios with a companionship of missionaries that was doing so good. One of them who has about 6 months left in his mission was especially downtrodden. However, as we worked during the day we found a whole bunch of fantastic people that were super prepared to here the gospel and he got way excited again to go to work. This week that had the best numbers in the zone. 10 of thier investigators went to church, the average is like 3. It was way incredible to see. One contact in particular we talked with an abuelita.When we told her that Christ was here in the Americas she started to smile and said ” I know that, of course he was here, he had to be here.” So we gave her a book of Mormon and hopefully we can find her again and start teaching her because it has been a little difficult.
WE also had a Family Home Evening with an investigator that is super good. For example in a future lesson during the week we taught him the plan of salvation and as we finished the lesson he was all happy with the knowledge that he had gained and everything but he then had a doubt.
“Elders” he said ” I have a problem. Tithing. I saw a couple of people with envelopes on Sunday and they passed them to the bishop. Were they passing him tithing?”
“Probably” we replied a little hesitently (tithing [giving one-tenth of your increase (income) to the Church] is usually a problem for investigators) “but maybe…”
“Great, that is fantastic” he said ” as you know tithing is very important for a Christian and I am super afflicted because I haven’t been able to pay my tithing. Can I pay it next sunday?”
I don’t think I have ever been left so speechless in my life. It was such a cool experience. It is incredible the way that the Lord works to prepare his children.
Wednesday – we had a training meeting with whole zone that went relatively well, we `prepared things for about an hour and then were presenting for abot 4 hours but everything came out super good. But due to that meeting we did’t have much time to plan the day, so we went to work with almost nothing planned. However the day worked out miraculously for us. Of many different things there was one experience super special. We had contacted a young family as they went walking to the bus stop and it was one of theses super quick, kind of bad contacts. We stopped them and asked their names, presented ourselves and in mid sentence they said that they were super busy. So we asked if we could pass by and they said yes, gave us their number and direction and that was that. We asked as they walked away if it would be alright if we passed at 9 and they sort of shrugged and said why not. Unfortunately we didn’t have the time to pass by in the night time but we didn’t worry about it to much because many appointments like that don’t work out. However, we put them in our plans for the next day so when we passed they said “What happened ? we were waiting for you ?” So we fixed another appointment and it was so good.
They came to church yesterday and stayed the whole time. They need to get married (just like the other 3 families that we found this week) but they are super good!
Friday – I had the most stressful lesson of my life with a 9 year old who got baptized yesterday. He is super smart (he has read the book of mormon twice) but we had a little left to teach him before his baptism and he couldn’t stay focused. So imagine Gideon after a long day, hungry and tired and then try to teach him a couple commandments. It was terrible but in the end it worked out and he was baptized. I will include photos.
In all it was a great week. I really enjoyed it.
Cambios are coming next weekend. They have gone incredibly fast. I suspect I will be writing about new companions and other such things next Tuesday.
I have been reading this week very carefully in Second Nephi and there is a verse [2 Nephi 2:8] that I love
Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, asave it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who blayeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass thecresurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.
I love this line because I think that more than just talking about that Christ will save us. However after a bit of meditation I came to think that maybe, and I might be wrong, that it also wants to tell us that it is as we develop the merits and the mercy of our Savior that we reach exaltation. Therefore there it is a necesity to incorporate in our character the Character of Christ.
I love you dear family, I am grateful for your support and your letters.
Elder Caleb Tonkinson