Sunday, September 18, 2011

September 12, 2011

September 12, 2011

Dear Mom,

I was just thinking about the same thing yesterday how unbelievable it is that attack happened so long ago!  I remember every single little part about that entire morning and having the situation explained to us by Mrs. Ferraro...  It's ridiculous how we were all so young, but every one of us will always remember that day.  

It's incredible how those little moments are so simple, and yet so defining in our lives.  Those little moments really are what make us who we are though...  Think about all of the time that we had to grow in the preexistence before coming here and how much time there is left in the eternity!  Think about the little tiny portion in the long run of everything that our life here is, and yet this moment in time is where we define who we will be for the rest of forever.  It's just crazy how the most important things that happen in life come and go just like that, but they leave huge marks on us and turn us into what we now are.  You know what I'm even saying?  Haha  I hope so...  

It was a great week, but it was also a real trial of our faith.  Our Mission President gave us a list of things to study and challenged us to be 100% willingly and strictly obedient.  There was a lot to do this week to train ourselves to be better and we were all faced with struggles to stay strictly obedient, but I know that in the end we all will receive the witness and the miracles after the trial of our faith.

Yesterday we had the chance to listen to a General Authority speak at a Zone Conference.  His name is Per G. Malm and he's in the 3rd Quorum of the Seventy.  It was so inspiring and he taught us so much and I just want to tell you about something interesting that I learned during the Conference...  So the Mission President here likes to focus on prayer a lot and he taught us something we can do called "Mighty Prayer." (D&C 5:24)  It is just like a regular prayer, but the difference is that in a mighty prayer we pray for the specific needs  and open-ness of individuals, such as in your situation Jon.  There is power in prayer, we all know that...  But think about how people become open to the message we have to give to them.  Think about how you might be the ONLY person in the whole world praying for those people.  We all take advantage of having families pray for us, and especially me as a missionary I know that I am prayed for, but imagine all of those children of God that He loves just as much that don't have anything to fall back on.  I just think that is a very interesting thing to ponder.  So I invite all of you to pray hard, out loud to all the people you want to open their hearts and receive blessings just as yourselves!

I was talking to the wife of the speaker yesterday about Sweden and Europe and where they were from and how they travel all the time and I thought about Ana and her parents, so I decided to ask if she knew them and she said "very well."  She said that they are good friends with the Teixeiras.  I thought that was pretty ridiculous!  And then I didn't know what else to talk about, so that was about it haha, but the whole Conference was wonderful.

The work slowed down just a little bit this week, but it is just as miraculous.  We just need to do a better job at going out and finding new people to teach, so we've been working with the members more often to try to find a few referrals.  Missionaries learn so much about every single concept of life if you think about it...  Everything you ever need to know about being successful in anything is in Preach My Gospel!  I am so blessed to have this opportunity and can't even imagine what the end result of all of this in my life and the lives of many others in the long run.  You're so right about it being the greatest service anyone can ever do.  There is nothing more humbling or gratifying!

The spanish word for cool is chevre and awesome is asombroso.  There are so many things we can't say, but in the end you just have to learn a little bit here and a little bit there to have dignified speech...  I think it's coming along!  I'm feeling very well.  I still wish I knew what it was exactly that I had and I wish that I could not have it anymore, but it's all just helping me to become stronger.  No problems! I'm doing wonderful as always.  We get fed a lot of food when we do get fed and we take the leftovers home a lot of the time, so food is not a problem.  We go out to eat every now and then, but just like the Missionary Handbook says, we limit the number of times we do that.  One day we will live in a perfect world where all we do is eat out.  Wouldn't that be wonderful?  I mean I love home-cooked things, but just imagine all you can eat everywhere in every restaurant for free.  I think it would be extraordinary.  I cook every now and then.  I came up with another delicious thing to make for you when I get home, but I don't make it that often anymore.  You'll just have to wait and see what it is.  In this area we eat a lot more with the members and they give us food so much more than the last area.  I'm not gaining weight, I think I'm actually losing weight or staying around the same for the most part which is kind of weird, but I'm fine with that.

We're supposed to exercise every morning for 30 minutes and I should probably do a better job at that.  I used to run sometimes in the mornings and I'll probably start doing that again.  I was going to take pictures of the apartment and send them to you today, but forgot.  I'll do it some other time.  I got everything you sent me and thank you so much for doing that!  You are a great mom!  Oh yeah, I played piano at the Zone Conference!  We sang "Hark All Ye Nations" and "Go Forth With Faith."  I mostly just sing in the car, but I hope to have the opportunity to sing some other time...  We'll see!

That's about it for this week.  The computer's going to kick me off in a few minutes.  I love you so very much and I am so happy for all of the support you all give to me.  I know that I couldn't do this if I was by myself!  



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