Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Email diecinueve: Last Email of the Year

December 26, 2016
So since 2016 is coming to a close let's take a look at the year:
  • January: I started my mission papers
  • February: I got accepted into BYU!!!
  • March: we were witnesses to the greatest march madness in college basketball history #Villanova clutch
  • April: I became legal and FINALLY sent in my mission papers
  • May: I received my mission call......TO THE GREATEST MISSION IN THE WORLD
  • June: I graduated high school and I started COLLEGE at BYU for Summer Term!
  • July: I said goodbye to Elder Stallings, Elder Duval, Elder Tillman, and other departing missionaries and basically lost all my friends from Herriman...
  • August: Summer term ended, moved back home for 3 weeks, worked at the temple, and set off for my greatest adventure of my life
  • September: enjoyed my time and made amazing friends at the MTC in good ole Provo Utah USA
  • October: I entered...THE FIELD.
  • November: I completed my first transfer and said goodbye to Elder Anaya and our family of three, and celebrated my second straight Thanksgiving eating tacos 
  • December: Elder Sotomarino and I continue to strengthen the area here in Russellville as best we can, and hope for our first baptism and celebrate our first Christmas away from home

I got Camo for Christmas!
All in all 2016 wasn't a bad year, some pretty awesome stuff happened, along with some not so awesome stuff, I sincerely hope that 2017 is an even better year...  Now that we've talked about the past year, let's talk about the past week.  Monday we basically did absolutely nothing for P day but sit on our butts in the Church building, that's basically been every P day this transfer...super lame that night we had a dinner with a member who was super strong in the Gospel but out of nowhere just stopped going to church about 6 weeks ago. We don't know what's going on but he said he should be able to come this next Sunday so we shall see.

Tuesday we had District meeting, and talked about our 7 baptismal dates that fell through... WE GOTTA GET PEOPLE TO CHURCH. The English Elders felt super sick after District meeting so we took them back to our apartment, fed them, and let them sleep while we finished studies. I even gave Elder Janes my delicious leftover spaghetti and tucked him in. And what did I receive in turn for this kind deed? Well I won't go into details, but it was pretty crappy ... those two hooligans got me sick.

When you haven't eaten in days,
a simple bowl of cereal simply
is not enough!
So we had to spend all of Wednesday of most of Thursday in the apartment...I got to catch up on sleep... but I drove me nuts being stuck in the apartment. Friday was Glorious because I finally got to eat again. Food glorious food. Fun fact, the 23rd is also Joseph Smith's birthday. I'm so glad for the life of the Prophet Joseph, for all the sacrifices he made so we could enjoy the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Saturday was of course Christmas Eve. We got to have a few lessons and give Christmas cards to a bunch of our investigators. We had dinner with David Bunton and his dad, and watched Meet Me in Saint Louis. Don't worry, we covered our eyes during the kissing scene. After we had ANOTHER dinner, this time with S and T. Long story short, after our lesson with them on Monday, they are still unsure about the whole marriage thing, pray for them please.

But dinner with them was amazing. Our bellies were about ready to explode, we didn't tell them we had just come from another dinner. S cooked a super spicy sopa, which was good but hard to eat on a full stomach. We love them lots.

Yesterday (CHRISTMAS!) was amazing, we spent all day with the English Elders, I love those guys to death. Elder Barnes has really come to be a great friend of mine. I thought when I first met him that he was just super quiet and shy and kinda nerdy, but I've gotten to know him, and he is the coolest. He is super funny and so kind. He has an amazing Spirit with him.

We opened presents together at our apartment Christmas morning. That was so much fun, I really got so cool gifts, thanks to my wonderful family! They are an even better gift though.

Church was good, we went to both the English and Sacrament hours, but S and T never came to church... we drove over to their apartment and knocked and we saw someone look through the blinds but no one ever answered us it was a bummer, so their baptismal date is toast for sure now... We will continue to do our best to bring them to the waters of baptism and the true church of Jesus Christ.

AND now the biggie: SKYPE WITH THE FAM That was such a tender mercy to speak with my family and hear their voices and see their faces. I treasured every second of it, I couldn't stop smiling. I love them soooooo much and the knowledge that I get to be with them forever is my motivation for everything. The awesomeness of my family itself is a testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel.

Also while we were waiting for Elder Barnes to finish his call I happened to find some anti-Mormon literature lying around in the office (we Skyped in the Bishops law office). It was this super old book written by this Baptist dude who had absolutely no idea what he was talking about. It was hilarious. I had a good laugh reading that crap. It ended up building my testimony of the reality of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know it happened, and it doesn't matter what lies others say in attempt to disprove or belittle the truth, it doesn't make it cease to be truth.

The Church is True, the Book is Blue, I know it, and so can you too ;)

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