Monday, May 5, 2014

May 5, 2014

They don't celebrate el cinco de mayo here but they did celebrate the 1st day of May for some reason that nobody knew, so everyone went to the bars and contacting that day was super fun hahaha.  Oh how we love festivos!!  Sounds like an awesome week back home!!

Zone meeting was amazing!!  We focused on using the scriptures more in teaching, and how people need to understand our message better. Our Zone is really struggling. The people up here have not been receptive the past while and things have been extremely rough for the entire zone, it's been pretty sad to see everyone (specifically in our district) so down and having such a hard time.  But, the Lord is here for us and it was a powerful zone meeting and when we apply these things we will find success.  (oh and no, I was not able to get the package.)  haha  I will get it at zone conference in a few weeks!  But that's okay, I found the only place in the entire country that sells deodorant, so I got that!!!  Kinda expensive but worth it:)

Thank you for the quote.  That helps a lot as I've heard it all here and I'm learning not to let people's comments bug me.  Contacting brings out the best parts of missionary work, it shows if you're truly committed to doing this and brings out some of the worst in people we talk to, but also gives us a chance to testify of the truth of this message and truly develop a love for these people.  You really have to develop a special kind of love to talk to everyone on the street, hear everything we hear but still be ready to go talk to the next person you see and I have truly started to develop this love for the people that everyone talks about.  It's hard sometimes cause there are some very stubborn people but that quote from President Hinckley is so true!  Thanks.

Happy is the man who can brush aside the offending remarks of another and go on his way.  ~President Gordon B. Hinckley

Well, this week was an absolute emotional roller coaster.  Wow.  What a week.  Basically we spent about 90% of it out on the street talking to people. and received nothing. haha  man i love it.  The principle of enduring to the end takes on a new meaning as it really takes something emotionally to get out of bed every day knowing you have a day filled with no plans because no one wants to meet, the members don't have time to have us over to work with us, and knowing it's a long long day of getting rejected in the street.  But do not take that as complaining or me trying to say,  Oh poor Elder Anderson because the reality is it was so tough the first couple transfers, but it has developed something in me I could never have developed otherwise, and that is the ability to persevere (sp?) until the end because of the hope that is found in the atonement of Jesus Christ.  The atonement is not just for sinners trying to get clean, but for saints trying to do good things.  I have never truly understood the atonement, and although I may never completely understand it in this life, I know that it is why we do everything we do.  we are inviting people to come unto Christ, and we have the power and courage to do that through the hope we find in Christ. We cannot fathom with our childish minds the extent of what he suffered in the garden and on his way to the cross but it effects everything we do.  That's been the main theme this week for me is trying to learn more about the atonement and it has come through more than just my studies, but through praying every day for the strength to continue to serve these people.  We had intercambios Wednesday and I went up to El Ferrol and that's a super cool city!  and now I've completed the cycle and been to all the cities in the district.  ¡que guay!  as we say here haha which means cool!  But yeah, basically that was the entire week contacting and learning about the atonement.

Of course, the big day, Saturday, was what made everything worth it.  WE HAD THE BAPTISM!!!!! They passed the interview and they got baptized!!!!!!:)  oh my goodness it was an incredible experience:) to see them go through the whole process of reading, praying, receiving an answer and then coming to the waters of baptism.  Incredible. The amazing thing was we didn't really have to do anything, just teach with the Spirit, follow Preach My Gospel and let the Spirit take care of the rest.  Amazing.  This work is so true and nothing can ever shake my testimony of this gospel after the happiness I have seen come into their lives.  I got to baptize Cindy and that was the most incredible experience.  President Allred was right, entering into the waters of baptism with someone is something that nothing comes close to.  It is a million times better than any home run I've ever hit.  The feeling is incredible, and lasting, and honestly words cannot describe it.  I am so grateful to be working here.  It's been the hardest thing I have ever done but the Lord has blessed us.  I've had 3 baptisms in my first 3 transfers.  That's a miracle.  But a miracle is the result of the application of correct principles and as we obeyed and worked our hardest the Lord blessed us beyond what I could have asked for.  It's so hard out here, but I am so happy to be here.  I love this work and I love my Savior.  I know He lives and He directs this work.  I love you all!!!!!  Can't wait to talk to you next week!!!!!:)

We will be skyping!!  We will be getting on at 4 p.m. here (8 a.m. there) and PLEASE SEND ME THE SKYPE ADDRESS so I can call you.  I'm so excited!!!:)  love you all!!!!:)

Elder Anderson
¡El reino de dios o nada!

Elder Smith, Josepha, Cindy & Elder Anderson