Friday, November 5, 2010

Letter 24 - 9/20/10

Change number 4!!

So.... this is hard to say, but I've been taken out of Independencia. I had a feeling that I was leaving, but I honestly didn't want to yet. We got the call last night, and the Zone leader told me himself that I was leaving. I was pretty upset that I was leaving, but at the same time interested in seeing where I would be going. I get a call ten minutes later and the zone leader wants to talk to me again. He asks, "Do you want to know your new sector or your new companion." Worried about the possibility of going to the office as the finance secretary I said, "I'm worried that by knowing my companion I'll know where my sector is. "Yes, but which would you like to know?" I said,"Companion." "Elder Márquez!!!" Elder Márquez lives in the same house as me.

After processing what that meant I realized that I wasn't going anywhere, but at the same time I wouldn't be in Independencia any more. I now work on the other side of a street, but still live in my old sector and will see everyone from my old ward every Sunday. I'm having a very hard time letting go of this ward by being so close to it, but not being able to do anything for it. Imagine working on our side of Walnut for four and a half months, then the next day all you do is just walk to a different side of the street. I've taken it pretty rough. Saying goodbye (kinda) to José Albuja, who's my best friend in all of South America, was tough.

Me and José
Baptism of José´s nephews Rubén, Jairo, Manolo, And Georgie
We baptized a total of six of his nieces and nephews with three more this next week. He gave me this blink-182 bag and an Offspring beanie. I honestly think it's the most meaningful gift someone has given me. When I first got here he was just reactivated and he took the bag to church. I told him I thought it was to coolest thing ever, he offered to give or sell it to me, but I told him I couldn't because it was too sacred (Haha. I said that in church) We would talk about music pretty often. We loved so many of the same bands. For him to give me those things meant so much.

There's been so much good that has happened in this ward while I´ve been here. I've grown and learned so much from serving and working with these people that it'll be hard to be around them and not with them. I'm not going to lie, I've cried a few times today. It's ok, it´s all part of the mission. Apparently I'm senior companion now, which feels pretty weird to say. It doesn't mean too much, I just put my name first on papers and if something goes wrong my butt's on the line. Supposedly being senior comp this soon is rare, but it's not that big of a deal to me because Elder Márquez has been here for 3 changes so I'm not that cool. I am excited to apply some new ideas though. Although it'll be rough, I can see a huge purpose in me being here, and most of it is for Elder Márquez. He's had some tough times being in the field and I was able to help him out two weeks ago, so I think working with him will help him get the spirit again. I'm sure there will be a whole lot more for me to learn and do there and I'm excited to do it. I realize that I'm not on my mission for me, so I need to be serving and worry for others at this time.

As far as last week goes it went pretty well. We had a really rough time finding new people, but we looked hard anyway. I lot was focused on the baptism, like it should be, but it just meant that our numbers weren't the best. We got the four nephews of José baptized this week. It was SOOO awesome to see him baptize his nephews. Also, Fabián's mom Rosa Abril finally got baptized, after who-knows-how-many missionaries. I fully understand, though, that it was because of Fabian that she got baptized and not because of us. It's great so see families getting completed like this. I'm bummed I won't be able to teach Fabián's family about the temple, but I think I can go with them when they go to be sealed.

I love this place a lot, and it'll be interesting to see how it grows from a distance. Especially to see it in a year and a half from now. It truly is a diamond in a dumpster. Sounds almost like an insult, but so true.
So instead of a scripture I wanted to share this quote that more than perfectly helps me stay focused and moving forward. It was written in my English "Preach My Gospel". Which I haven't seen since I got here over four months ago. While I was moving my stuff I remembered there was a cool quote from Richard G. Scott, but I wasn´t sure what it was about. Hopefully it helps anyone else who is having a rough time also.

"Just when all seems to be going right, challenges often come in multiple doses applied simultaneously. When those trials are not consequences of your disobedience, they are evidence that the Lord feels you are prepared to grow more (see Prov. 3:11–12). He therefore gives you experiences that stimulate growth, understanding, and compassion which polish you for your everlasting benefit. To get you from where you are to where He wants you to be requires a lot of stretching, and that generally entails discomfort and pain."

Well Friends and Family,  I love you and have a great week!

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