Monday, February 23, 2015
I'll be honest with you. We are really hoping to hear from you. I'm guessing that because you left right on you normal P-Day you were not able to get an email out to us. Whatever the reason, we hope things are going well.
I've got a ton of questions for you. I hope that's ok.
How is the mission area? Who is your new companion? Are you making progress with the language? What else is interesting with things?
I could ask many many more but I'll stop because I just want to know one question. How's it going?
Life around here is moving along fine. I think your mission has done wonders for my job. It seems like just as soon as you left I have had more opportunities and I've been able to more contributions than I ever have. It could be just luck but I choose to think that it's one of the tender mercies the Lord has given because of your sacrifice.
I had to give an emergency lesson in priesthood this week. I was kind of worried because I gave the lesson just a few weeks ago. It's not exactly easy for me when I've got my former bishops and former members of the stake presidencies in our quorum. It's a little intimidating for me to be honest. It's ok though because I know that if I put forth the effort, there is always a great reward. This time was no different. The lesson was from Elder Perry's talk "Finding Lasting Peace and Building Eternal Families". I learned a little more about the parable of the Wheat and the Tares then I did before. The reward was it gave me a little more reason to dig a little deeper in the scriptures.
Last week we went to Vegas and took Alex with us. He ended up missing a few days of school and boy did he get behind. You know what a pain that is right? It's been good for me because I've made a little more effort to work with him. I've realized how much I need to work on my patience. What makes me feel worse is that I realize I still need so much work when my patience and all my kids are gone. This makes me wonder how impatient I may have been with all you guys. Hopefully there is forgiveness.
Well Josh, we are hoping and praying you are going to have a great journey down there. Remember that it won't be easy but it will be worth it.
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Hey dad! I want you to wish Mom a happy birthday for me! Tell her "cumpleaños feliz" it means happy birthday
I would like to send pictures, but I don't have the cord to connect my camera to the computer! Also, i wanted to have all the pictures and then share them in like a slideshow or something when I return. If you really want to, i can borrow a cord from someone else.
So! So i got injured again.......while we were playing soccer. We play soccer on an outdoor soccer court surrounded by a chain link fence, so we call it "cage soccer". anyways, so i go to kick the ball...and i miss and kick my toe into the concrete as hard as i can by mistake. Suave (smooth).......It hurt a lot! I thought i ripped off my toenail! But i didn't, luckily. So I walked off the court obviously. The next day i check it, and it is messed up! It's really bruised, this is my big toe, and the bruise looks like a 6. It legitimately looks like a 6, so i'm starting to think it's a sign of the devil, like a 666 deal. It's crazy! So it kinda hurts to walk now, which is lame, but don't worry about me :) I'll get better!
I gave a talk last sunday! So every sunday, they give us a topic and we're supposed to write a 5 minute talk about that topic. This week we had to speak about the atonement, which was super easy! I can go off on the atonement for like 30 minutes if i needed to......maybe. I ended up going over time, i think i spoke for 7 or 8 minutes. I didn't care, i felt that i gave a good talk.
One thing that I really liked in my talk was how i described God's perspective when Christ was suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane. This thought came to me while the person who spoke before me was giving their talk. I love to think of God as my own father, like my dad. Just imagine as a father, seeing his own son have to endure the greatest amount of pain possible. If i was in God's shoes, i have no idea what I would do, God kind of had to watch his own son suffer the pains and sins of the world, in order for us to return to Him. Maybe sometimes, we take that for granted. So there's a spiritual thought for you all :)
Also on sunday, i had the opportunity to see Meet the Mormons! I absolutely loved it! You guys need to go see it, it's a really good movie. It's sort of a documentary type of film going through if i remember, around 5 or 6 different mormon families. I strongly recommend watching it :)
I got your letter! The one where you attached the picture of you and alex snowmobiling, that's so cool! I love those letters, it's sad though. Because that missionarypackagemx website only delivers to the mtc, not my mission. And i'm leaving on monday!!! That's so great!!
Yes, I finally depart from the CCM (MTC) next monday, at 2 p.m. I didn't expect to leave at 2 in the afternoon, because everybody else was leaving really early in the morning, at around 4 or 5 a.m. I think i heard of someone leaving at 3 in the morning. So that's another thing to be grateful for I guess, hahaha.
So that's my week :)
Here's what my toe looks like:
Wednesday, February 4, 2015
Aw why didn't you tell me that you were sharing these emails!?!?! xD
Haha well now i need to watch my language! Do i really say crap and suck?
Anyways, so here's what happened this week. This saturday marks 1 month since i have been out, and today marks 5 weeks in the mtc. crazy right?
On sunday, we watched a video about joseph smith that i haven't seen before. It was amazing! It perfectly described the trials and how hard his life was while he was restoring the gospel. It was incredible. One of the presidency members said whenever you're in between a rock and a hard place, to write a letter to joseph smith. Saying how grateful you are for him enduring to the end really. He had tremendous faith for this gospel and that video strengthened my testimony about joseph smith (Joseph Smith = José Smith in Spanish) It's really weird to say José smith because Joseph sounds so much more sophisticated, in spanish I feel like i'm saying "Joe Smith saw God and his son Jesus Christ"
So I'm pretty sure I've told you about our fake investigators, basically we teach our teachers as if they were investigators. So this week we were teaching "Juana" who has had a really tough life with her husband and her kids, and poverty, and other things. The last lesson, we committed her to baptism! We set a date and everything! I was so happy! I felt accomplished really. It was interesting afterwards because it was just our teacher, pretending to be an investigator. But it felt as if it was a legitimate investigator, and that got me wondering how it's going to be in the field.
I'm growing my testimony of the scriptures, I love reading the scriptures and there's so many i need to mark because I like them so much and i could use them for future investigators! If I had to choose which aspect of the gospel I loved the most, it would be the scriptures. I'm in jacob and currently reading and studying about the Allegory of the Olive tree. It's a long chapter! 77 verses! (versículos = verses)
So rumor has it that next sunday, when we watch a gospel video, we could be watching Meet the Mormons! That's what i've heard at least, I hope that's going to happen! The videos are probably one of the best things on sundays, even though sundays are the best. I bore my testimony last sunday, since it was fast sunday. It was great because I don't normally do that. It was an interesting experience with the spirit there. There was some really strong testimonies that day, the spirit kept pushing me and pushing me to get up there and speak. Almost to the point where i had tears in my eyes. So I followed the prompting and I got up there and said a pretty good testimony i feel like. I say that because when I was done, like 3 people all went up at the same time, I kinda felt like I gave other people inspiration to get up and bear their testimony. Which happened to me just before that, so that was cool.
I memorized the 1st vision in spanish! So i'm moving along with spanish, my next goal is to memorize James 1:5 in spanish, which should be easy. I'm also currently trying to memorize D&C 4 in spanish, I have the first 2 verses memorized. I'm making good progress I feel like.
Vi una columna de luz, más brillante que el sol, directamente arriba de mi cabeza, y esta luz gradualmente descendió hasta descansar sobre mí.
Al reposar sobre mí la luz, vi en el aire arriba de mí a dos Personajes, cuyo fulgor y gloria no admiten descripción. Uno de ellos me habló, llamándome por mi nombre, y dijo, señalando al otro: Este es mi Hijo Amado, ¡Escúchalo!
Told you i memorized the 1st vision ;)
I'll be sending you a printed letter later this morning too but I wanted to drop you a little note that you will hopefully have time to read.
Of course the main thing on my mind is how you are doing. so.. How are you doing? Not a day goes by where I don't look up and wonder what is my son Josh doing. Is he learning a new word? Is he practicing a lesson? Is he playing basketball? Is he buying a street taco?
Your mission has created a profound loneliness for me. This is a good thing because it makes me want to do my best in all that the Lord has asked me to do so that he somehow may reward my efforts by sending His blessings to you. I'm not sure if it works that way. You may have to qualify for your own blessings. The truth is we pray for you every night and hope for the best.
One last thing. About your emails to us. Keep in mind that we want to send this out to everyone that will want to read them. That's a lot of people. We want to hear about everything in your journey as a missionary. Please be careful in some of the words you choose. It's best to not use street language. Words like 'suck' and 'crap' are not the best choices. I'm sure when Alex leaves I'm going to have to have a talk with him about the word 'fart'.
Remember Josh that we love to hear from you. Your letters are the milestone of our week. As soon as we get one, we are waiting for the next one. Whatever you write we will love.