Saturday, February 2, 2013

February 2, 2013

Man, I straight love y'all. I can't believe how much time it has been since I have seen all you clowns. The weeks just blitz by; every one a little bit faster than the last. That was really nice that you heard from Elder Davison's mom. He is a super good Elder, he is one of the zone leaders up in Victoria and he is a really great missionary. I look up to him a lot. Haha and yes, he has to call me every night and I always start by asking him, "What's good in the Promised Land?"
So the work continues progressing down here in Mexico at a lightning fast pace. It was a pretty smooth transfer week. I think I probably took close to 60 calls Monday haha but everyone got to their new area safely and on time. When that happens it's a successful transfer day, when that happens I don't ask much on the details hahaha, if it was a messy process to get there, I would rather just not know.  In my first change in the offices we did have an Elder that didn't get off the bus in the little town where he was supposed to and showed up in a city two zones away that night haha, but no, these transfers were all really smooth. Elder Parry is training again this change, so he was in town with Elder Salazar and I Monday night and Tuesday morning. His companion got here Monday afternoon from the Dominican Republic and was straight wiped out from traveling like 24 hours straight, so he slept legitimately from 4 pm Monday until 6:30 am Tuesday haha. But yeah it was a good time to see Elder Parry.
So in this transfer, 11 Elders went home and only three got here. Oh yeah, and we have 24 that are waiting for their Visas in Peru, Central America and the USA. So yeah, that was the trick of these transfers was that obviously we had to close/combine some areas because of the lack of missionaries that got here on time. It's always really hard to close areas because all the missionaries have something good going in their area, even if the work is slower in some parts than others, so what we tried to do instead of shut areas was combine some wards. As part of that... SURPRISE!! Elder Salazar and I now have our responsibilities in the offices, Barrio Central and... BARRIO BOULEVARD!!!  Yeah it's a lot, and finding time for all three is quite the balancing act. But the sweet thing is that we inherited a SWEET family, like one that is Pure Gold.  The dad is Hector, the mom is Elide, and the daughter is Martha.  They are super great and they have a pretty high level of education, and all three and really understand the doctrine which is like 77% of the battle. They are really awesome and really enthusiastic about the gospel which I really like. We had a super good lesson with them last night. In our first lesson they told us that they had been praying to the Holy Ghost, so last night we decided that we were going to teach them really clearly about the nature of God the Father. One thing that I have learned on my mission is that people can't truly have faith in something that they don't understand. So many people believe in God, but don't understand that He is a man, with a body of flesh and blood, with feelings and love just like we feel. They don't understand that He is only one person and that Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost are separate beings that share the same purpose. If they don't understand this very important truth, they can't truly gain a testimony of the love and understanding that God has for us as his children, they can't truly gain a testimony of the plan that our Father in Heaven has for our salvation and that he has had since long before any of us came to this earth, and they can't feel the same desire and conviction to keep his commandments. It's like trying to laugh about the parts in a movie that you haven't seen yet, you really can't get the full effect.  So with that being said, we clearly explained these things to this family and it all really clicked for them. They learned a ton and the Spirit was really strong in that lesson. They are a great family and it was an awesome experience.
As for Chris and Ber, they continue progressing.  No baptism for them, but they are still on track.
Last night a visa waiter from the US got here who had been serving in the Las Vegas West mission, the mission that until last July was the most righteous mission, haha. No, but the coolest part is that this Elder who was visa waiting has been living in Elder Ringer's family's basement. Elder Ringer is an Elder serving here. He was trained up in Victoria when I was training Elder Garry. But crazy small world right? Kind of a cool story.
Well, Zion prospers family. Apparently in this next week we could receive 6 more visa waiters which means that we could be reopening some more areas and looking for a lot more trainers in this next little while.
In my Book of Mormon reading, I'm in Moroni 6, so tomorrow morning I'm going to complete the first part of my goal and finish the Book of Mormon and then Monday we start reading it as a mission. I'm so grateful for this time that I have to serve as a missionary. I never could have thought that something could have changed me so much. Yesterday someone asked us if we watch TV and Elder Salazar and I told them no and also told them all the other things that we don't do for two years, and then right after I said something that really hit me as I said it. I told them, "And I've never been happier..." I thought on that for a minute after I said it and it really is true.  I have never done anything in all my life that is so fulfilling. I have never felt so confident about anything else in all my life as I do when I tell someone that the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith truly saw what he saw. It's ALL TRUE. Every single word of it. What a blessing it is. 143 family and friends. #GMC$ #SpecialK #JakeHeaps
Elder Stockard

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