Happy Thanksgiving! We ate our Thanksgiving dinner Friday during zone conference. The conference was really good and exactly the charge that my batteries needed. Elder Bednar came to Chile the other week and met with all of the mission presidents and the area presidency. President and Hermana May shared a few quotes from him with us that I love! "Our own emotions tell us what we WANT to hear and the Spirit tells us what we NEED to hear." Every time we feel the Spirit it is most likely indicating that we need to use what we are hearing, reading, etc to change something in our lives.
"For non believers miracles aren’t sufficient, for believers miracles aren’t necessary." Do you remember Manuel, the investigator that thought he was going to be an apostle. Yeah, he asked for a sign to know if the Book of Mormon is true, that Ha. Chapman and I stay in Los Andes for another transfer. We didn’t get transferred and he received his sign. But when we showed up to his house the day after transfers, he was angry and since then he hasn’t wanted to meet with us. Miracles aren’t necessary.
After lunch we had a scripture competition and my district won! I have progressed a lot in my Spanish since our last competition, when I couldn’t understand what the scripture was even saying. Now I can understand and have been studying the scriptures in Spanish, so I can find them now from memory. After the competition we went back to the chapel and SURPRISE I was chosen to give the second talk about humility to have more charity. Every transfer we prepare talks and President May chooses two of us to give our talks in Conference. I was pretty nervous. But it went well. I shared the scripture in Matthew when Jesus is asked who is the greatest in the kingdom of God and he replies that it is the children. Then I talked about Mosiah 3:19 or 19:3; I’m not sure. It lists all of the characteristics of children. And I shared an experience of a little boy who picked weeds and gave them to us. He showed a lot of humility by first wanting to talk to us, foreigners that he has never met and that talk funny, then he gave us everything that he had in that moment to give. When I started to leave Ha. Chapman called to me and said, "Look." I looked and the little boy was waiting to blow me a kiss. It was pretty cute. The last part of this scripture in Mosiah says that children are willing to submit to the will of their parents. Christ gives us the greatest example of this when he was in the garden of Gethsemane. This is the moment most difficult during the Atonement and what does he say to his Father? He says that if He can pass the cup let it pass, but it doesn’t matter what he wants, but what God wants. He does the will of His Father. We are never going to have a moment this hard in our lives, there is nothing more difficult. We need to find the will of Heavenly Father and be humble enough to do it!
I found out in the Conference that Carmen from my first ward, was baptized a few weeks ago! I was so happy to see the picture of her baptism and know that she now has the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Magdalena and her girls are progressing. They couldn’t come to church this last week. The daughter, Faviana, is reading up a storm in the Book of Mormon and is constantly asking for more chapters to read.
Constanza is our secret investigator and as she said to us this week, is progressing "step by step". Like the New Kids on the Block song. It is our theme song with her! It’s pretty funny to hear Chileans singing New Kids on the Block songs. I love it! She has a dilemma right now in her life and she has to choose between a family member and Heavenly Father. Please pray for her to make the right decision.
Yesterday was stake conference and it was absolutely incredible to see the chapel full. I really like what President Perez said about going to church. He said, "When we don’t attend we forget our covenant with Jesus Christ and to forget our covenant with Jesus Christ isn’t ok." This stake president really has the Spirit; I feel it so strong every time he speaks.
I’m about to run out of time. So that’s it folks. I love you,
PS Wow Ben! You are spiritually charged right now! Our zone leaders in my first transfer did the same thing that Elder Jensen did. They asked us to imagine the plane ride home, 14 hours of reflection on the mission and all the people we met. Then they took our nametags from us and described that meeting with the stake president. I really couldn’t see the end of the mission at this point, having only recently started, but I sure can see it now, almost half way done. It is going to hurt so much when that day comes. When Elder Holland spoke to us in the MTC, he told us to work so hard during the mission that they have to carry us home in a stretcher. If we work that hard, I don’t think we will hurt so much when it ends, having known that we did everything possible to serve the Lord. I can’t believe there were more than 100 investigators, that must have been an incredible sight!
Sandra Morales is a member of my ward. We eat lunch with her every Saturday. Her son was baptized two years ago and with time everyone followed suit. Their house was the first that I visited my first night in Los Andes. (Sandra Morales emailed us pictures last week so I asked Amy who she was.)
The weather is constantly changing. It’s like Provo. Everyone says that it is usually way hotter at this time of year, and I say the change is because I am here.
I sent half to save on postage..... (Why she sent half a candy bar for my birthday)