May 31, 2010
Buenos días. Today is a like a late October day. The leaves are all sorts of colors and there is a slight breeze. It is jacket weather and I am glad it is not coat weather. The rain has started and should rain at least one day out of every week.
I am still stuffed up, but feeling pretty good. The bad air pollution here has made it harder to get better I think. I am grateful that H Dinsdale has her voice back!
This week we continued teaching our family. Segunda and Mirian read in the BoM and recognized the Spirit. I love how Segunda described the Spirit, “it is like I have the presence of the Lord right next to me.” They did not come to church yesterday, so we went by last night and talked about the importance of going to church. During the lesson their doubt came out. They believed that our church is true but didn´t understand that the Catholic church isn´t. Long story short, now they know the difference between the true church and the rest. Segunda´s son, David, has been so great in helping us out. I have been able to see what the first two weeks back from the mission will be like. From my observations it seems like you have got to take one or two days to relax and prepare to hit the ground running. David is such a good teacher. He baptized over 200 people in Bolivia, and he takes all trunkiness that there could be out of me. To see someone relieved from a calling that meant so much, just makes me want to work and work for him. I´m pretty sure you can´t appreciate the mission until you´re not doing it anymore; that is when you want more than anything to share the gospel. I am so glad that Heavenly Father is blessing him for all that he did for other people, by preparing his family to be baptized.
For a long time we have been teaching Gonzalo and Ariela, but we don´t see them a lot just once every two weeks or so. Well Gonzalo finally came to church yesterday! Ariela is a member and they have a two year old daughter named Emilia. Emilia has the cutest high voice and it is funny to watch her running around the house screaming, “Gonzalito!” She calls her parents by their first names instead of Mom and Dad. So I guess that is why it is important in a marriage to call each other “Mom” and “Dad” with the first child. Or maybe not, Mom and Dad what did you do when I was little? So Gonzalo has been in a lot of churches and has lots of doubts. He doesn´t really think that there is one right way, that there aren´t absolutes. But he loves his family and wants the best for them. I think the only way for him to gain a testimony will be to read in the Book of Mormon.
Ben told me about an article that he read in the March Ensign about gratefulness. I printed it out last week and I love it! Everyone should read it. I applied what I learned by starting a “tender mercies” wall. We have a bag full of colorful papers and every night we write down a blessing we received during the day and tape them on the wall. It is like the thankful basket, but on the wall. It has been really fun. The other thing I did was start a list of 101 things that I love about my companion. I write each one on a post it note and hide it in the house for H Dinsdale to find. When she found the first ten, she started doing 102 things that she loves about H Arnold. It has been really good for our companionship!
Thanks for all of your support, letters, and love! You have gotten me through some rough times.