Monday, April 18, 2011

Justo Daract has put me on my knees

Well Hola Familia.  Como anda todo?  ¿Bein?
Ohhh where to start and what to say. . .  This cyber we are in for some reason feels so American.  New english music and all.  I don´t recognize any of it.  I rejoiced to hear the news about Elder Matt Young.  That makes me SO HAPPY!  And it’s ok for the branch president to live in Cordoba.  More than the ties, I received the 2 libro de mormons.  And speaking of mail, I recently sent, last Tuesday, a loaded letter.  White envelope, so look for that.  I absolutely loved the email!  And don’t worry mom, for some reason my body now likes getting up right at 6:30.  I pop right up and head to the capilla.  I get on my knees and pray in the chapel every morning and evening.  I’m finally in my routine in Daract.  And things are going good and running smoothly.

We are staying Juntos, Elder Molen and myself.  Deep down I knew.  The first little bit you have to get used to the new companion, which I did with Molen.  The moment we found out we were staying, everything changed.  (Right now we are listening to ‘evacuate the dance floor,’ I’ve heard it at BYU before.  It gets weirder and weirder to listen to this tipo de musica!!)  What do I mean by everything changed. . .  how to explain this. . .   I really push him.  Like before, I just kinda quietly went through the day.  But now, I’m really trying to help him out with many things, from teaching to waking up on time.  Our relationship is doing good good, so no worries there.  Obviously there are still things I have to tolerate, and I’m sure he does too, but life is good.

O, a comment on that eagle picture.  First, HARRISON - congratulations.  Remember - the preseason is where the missionary is made.  And mom you look so good!  Nice and young and everything.  And I’m not just saying that because it is you BIRTHDAY!!  That is the first thing I thought when I looked at it . . .  but dad on the other hand.  You turned 49ish¿ Dang brother, where’d your hair go?  Hey, I love you dad.  We will have to hike up some mountains after the mission and talk, with Boston and Rush going in the background!  OO something reminded me of cool the engines this week.  I tried to sing it, but couldn´t remember any of the words. Listen to that for me, would you?  And mother, almost all the half-way abstract names in the emails, I don´t recognize.  Like Gabby, Blake, Saydi’s blanket lady, yeah, no idea.  I’m just forgetting everything!  que tal
Although numerically this week wasn´t on fire, I had a good week of learning.  A quick story.  Today normally would gave been a bummer day for me, but let me tell you something.  Generally we take an hour bus to Mercedes Sunday night after the work finishes and the sun sets.  But last night we found ourself in a lesson to remember, until late, making us miss the bus.  I was totally fine with that!  If you know what I mean.  Any chance to teach the Gospel here in Justo Daract and I am all over it!  I love teaching!  So we were just going to go over this morning and do a normal p day.  But then word came that we were going to San Luis!  Sweet, I was psyched, we were going to play futbol and Elder Gonzolez and Hinojosa are there (Elder Hinojosa is dying this transfer!)  Basically, our bus to Villa Mercedes was going to arrive a little late this morning, after the bus they wanted to take to San Luis left.  So we got hosed!  Due to bad planning, or really just no planning by the zone leaders, the elders in Justo Daract got toasted for the p day.

When I found that out, about 7 am I was so bummed!  Then I started getting mad.  Then my spiritual side realized something. I have been praying for growth and that usually comes through trials.  I realized this as a trial which changed my attitude.  I want to learn from this.  So I was still decently bummed because the zone left to San Luis without us etc.  So I was over by the big heater in the church.  And apparently got a little too close . . . because for some reason I quickly moved away from it and touched my backside and felt something all melty.  Upon further investigation, I found that the heater had melted my best pair of money shorts given to me by THE Ben Ostler.

NO!!! It was just the thing that would have pushed me over the edge.  Our p day got hosed and then my money shorts got totaled.  But something interesting happened. I just became ok with it.  I laughed at it.  Christ is changing my nature.  Before the mish, I would have been so ticked at the outcome of 2 events like that.  But I sit here in Justo Daract, just happy with life.  I went outside and walked around and smiled.  And counted my blessions.  I looked at the beautiful horses that rome free behind the church fence, not 40 meters from the door to the church.  Amazing, remarkable.  And a cool thing is that even though the calefactor melted completely through my shorts, not a mark anywhere else.  Not even a piece of melted shorts.  How cool is that!
Justo Daract has put me on my knees.  I have found strength and happiness through the gift of Prayer.  It is incredible!  During the day I physically feel a boost, a light push and encouragement from behind me. Angels really walk with me in Justo.  It is something inexplainable.  I have been praying for answers and wanting personal revelation and am receiving it.
I gave a talk in church this week.  I was stiring and so unsure on what to speak of.  Until Saturday night, we were walking in the streets, bytheway, hardly any of them are paved, and it came.  I knew what it was I was supposed to talk about.  I went home and studied for the talk, and wrote it Sunday morning in the 2 hours we have before church.  And yes mom.  We live IN the church.  The door to our room is not 15 steps from the pulpit.
The talk turned out really well.  I filled out 22 minutes. My talk was 4 claves a la felicidad (4 keys to happiness).  Although there are many, I was given four.  la santa cena, la esperanza, la gratitude, y el servicio.  It was just great.  I learned so much!  But the audience wasn´t to huge.  There’s really only 8 active members, and 2 weren´t at church.  So there were 2 of us, 6 of them, 2 little kids, and a high counsel member from San Luis.  It’s just a different life here family!  And yes mom, there is primary.  This week the primary teacher wasn´t there, and so I taught it!  It was so sweet.  No one asked me, I just kinda stepped in and did it.  Man this music I’m listening to is so raro!  There were the 2 little girls, one alaniz, and the other is Jose´s daughter.  And then the other alaniz 12 year old Samule was there too.  So it was us 4.  And the spirit.  We talked about Jesus and the little children and about prayer.  And piano in church went well too.
This week we ate 5 meals with the members!!!!  I am getting good at talking to people. I am coming out of my shell, and it is great.  I love it.  Saturday we had an activity and the members came and we spent the morning deep cleaning the church. Afterwards we ate this great food.  And then after the 3 hour lesson last night with Ernesto and his family, they fed us.  It was great, last night we taught everything, all 4 commandments and the plan of salvacion.  And they asked us every question in the book of questions to ask missionaries and started writing a second one!  What a great night.  I wish I had more more more time.  We’ll have to talk in 3 weeks.  I asked about skype in my email just barley to president.
And now we have light in the kitchen!  It was fixed by hermano alaniz! and o my you should have seen what came out of our hot water heater.  Just leafs and dirt and crud.  It needs deeper cleaning, but we might get it working soon. As for now, we shower with buckets.  And I’m getting it down to a science.
It was sweet one night this week when I talked to some pibes (kids) openly grafitiying a city statue.  The Book of Mormon challenge started this week and I’m doing it in spanish.  It's not to hard.  66 days. 
Well that’s what I got for you this week. 
I love the mowing pow wow comment. 
Go make that money kids so you can serve a mission too!  It’s worth it. 
Happy Birthday mom.  Man you’re old, but you look so young.
Dad, you choose well.  Mom’s a gem, isn´t she?
Amanda, I love you too
Elder Ostler