This week has been pretty cool! Crazy that I'm 19 now and I've already been serving my mission for longer than 2 months. I've been learning a lot in the gospel and Spanish is coming along as well. This week I had a pretty crazy trial that was tough but was one of the best experiences that I have had on my
mission! We had another split with missionaries. This time Elder Tucker went to a different area with Elder Smitherom while I stayed in Tepatitlan with Elder Vargas. Elder Vargas is a cool Elder that is a good teacher and a good worker. He is also a new missionary and has the same amount of time as me on his
mission. He also is very short (about 5' 3'') and looks very young. He's Mexican and barely speaks any English at all. So we had a good time together trying to get through the day. Just picture it: a tall gringo young man that doesn't know Spanish and a really short Mexican that looks like he's 14 spent a whole day preaching the gospel together. Did I mention that they are both new as well? Anyways it was kind of fun trying to communicate back and forth and trying to get on the right buses and finding the right places to go the whole day. It was actually really fun! Surprisingly we communicated really well and I can get around better than I thought I could.
Elder Vargas and I had a really great lesson with an inactive family that has 2 little girls in it. One is 8 and the other is 9. They want to get baptized so we were going over a few things to help prepare them. We first started the lesson and went over the restoration a little bit (but Elder Tucker and I taught them that lesson last time) to see what they remembered. The two girls were very smart and remembered the different parts of the lesson and understood why it was important. We then went ahead and started talking about Thomas S. Monson and who he was. I got out a picture and they said they recognized him. I then started talking about why a profeta is important and asked them why they thought he was. I then went ahead and did an object lesson with them about the profeta. I told Joselyn to put her hand out under mine in the air. I then told her that her hand represented the people on the earth and my hand represented God. I told her to follow my hand with her hand. She did easily. I then asked her if the people on the earth could see nuestro Padre Celestial. She responded no. I then asked her to try and follow my hand again but this time to close her eyes. She did and I told her to open her eyes again but this time her hand was way far off compared to my hand. I then told her that people need something to keep them connected to their heavenly father. I took out my pen and told her that the pen represented
the profeta and I then put it into my hand and told her to hold onto it and then close her eyes again. This time even with her eyes closed she could still follow my hand. This example shows us that through the profeta we can still be connected to our heavenly father and follow what he needs us to do! It was
awesome! They actually understood me and they loved the Object lesson! We then went ahead and taught them about la palabra de sabiduria (the word of wisdom) and why it was important. They were interested and understood it, we then played a game similar to the one that we have done at family home evening with the good stuff that goes into our bodies goes onto the plate and the bad stuff that goes into the trash. It was really fun and the kids loved it! Elder Vargas and I did a really good job teaching this lesson and taking turns through out the lesson even though we didn't prepare the lesson together. I feel that I talked more through out the lesson then I usually do because I felt like I had to more... it was a great experience and makes me want to train someone else (preferably a native speaker) after Elder Tucker goes home.
My Birthday was pretty much just a normal Sunday out in the mission. Elder Tucker did buy me some good burgers the night before and which was way nice of him and the burgers were way good. But Sunday was just a normal day. We went to church. We taught a class and apparently the class started singing to me a happy birthday type song in Spanish... I didn't realize they were even singing to me so I was trying to sing a long like a loser... I then realized they were singing to me when they sang "Elder Esoomeres" I then stopped singing and realized everyone was looking at me... haha, I'm such a loser. It was really awesome and nice of everyone! We then taught a good lesson and I helped out a lot more then I usually do. We had a really boring meeting after church. And then we went to a members house for lunch. This member made me a really good meal for my Birthday. It happened to be her husbands birthday as
well who used to live in Nebraska and knows a little English. We had a hamburger (which was good), a salad, and some really good fruit! It was way nice of her and really filling and really good. Other then that we really didn't do much different for my Birthday. I didn't have cake or ice cream (but it seems like I
haven't had cake or ice cream for my birthday for the last couple years ;) ) but it was a good day. Not quite as special of a day as it is back in the states but still a good day.
Well I am loving my mission and am continuing to grow in Spanish and in the Gospel! Love you all thanks for all the prayers! It really does make a difference!
Some pictures for you: