Monday, January 25, 2016

Last Week b4 Transfers:))

Hellooooo :)

Well I made it!! It's the last week of the longest transfer known to
man. It's been long but super good too, I have enjoyed every single
second and am super excited to see what kind of changes are headed my
way this next week!! This week was good, here's how it went!

So first off, we have decided to wait on Claudia's baptism. We have
fasted and prayed like crazy and this is what we feel is best for her
at this time. I'm not going to lie, it was a hard pill for me to
swallow. I was all for the baptism and didn't want to wait any longer,
but sometimes we have to look at the situation from all angles. I'm
confident that she will be baptized someday, hopefully I'm here to see
it but if not, it will still be a special day for her regardless of
when it is. I have come to realize that the Lord really has his hand
in all things and this is his work. If he gave us the prompting to
wait for some reason, then that's what we should do. Claudia is
prepared and has a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and all the
basic principles of the gospel, so for now we are going to focus on
helping her strengthen that!!

Wednesday we went to León to watch the World Wide Missionary
Conference which was AMAZING!! First off I love going to León so that
was good, and second, I learned sooooo much! Elder Anderson taught us
that when we don't know what to say, speak of the Savior. Always have
his name on your lips and be ready to testify! This is something that
I can improve, after all his name is on my chest every moment of every
day! Elder Bednar said something that I loved... "You can bring it
unto the heart, but you can't jam it into the heart." A lot of the
time, I feel like trying to jam my message into the hearts of the
people I'm teaching, but that's not how it works. I can control my
part as a missionary and do my job which is to bring it unto the
hearts of the people, but ultimately it's up to them to accept it. The
last point I wanted to share is that we need to be bold, confident,
and extend our commitments with love! And never forget to promise
blessings. It was a spiritual missionary feast and I learned sooo
much. It was almost like a missionary General Conference!! Anyways, it
was a good day :)

Thursday was weekly planning which was good and then after... WE
CLEANED! Holy cow I was sweating my guts out haha it felt sooo good to
CLEAN!! Before my mission I considered myself a clean person, but now
I don't know what I would call myself haha... I'm a clean maniac! I
was at a point of puking once or twice while I was cleaning the
bathroom. I don't want to give details because I'll throw up writing
this email but let's just say I feel much better about the cleanliness
of our Piso now. Elder Peña cleans a little bit, but the majority of
it is me. But the miracle is that he helped me a ton on Thursday!!
Haha I was a happy missionary living in a clean Piso so that was a
good feeling. I have a testimony that when we are clean, we are more
in-tune with the spirit, because I could feel a difference immediately
after. I'm already praying that my next companion is a clean freak
like me now haha!! :)

Saturday we had one of the most fun English classes I can remember in
my time here. I found out that one of our "students", Alfredo, lived
in Wyoming for a few years so he was familiar with the states and that
explains why his English was so good! We talked about Wyoming and
Cowboys and horses and Yellowstone and everything about the western
United States for like an hour and a half and it was so much fun to
connect with him! At the end of every English class, we always share a
thought and this time I shared one of my favorite scriptures in D&C
6:36. It says "Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not."
After I shared this scripture, Alfredo got teary-eyed and told me how
beautiful he thought it was! He's such a good guy and I'm so glad that
I've gotten to know him and enjoy a few hours every week speaking
English. I'm hoping that by sharing all these scriptures with him and
being a genuine friend, maybe one day his heart will be open to hear
the gospel!! He's such a good guy. Haha I love Alfredo!!

Sunday was another good Sabbath day as usual. Church is completely
different now on my mission than it was before! I've come to love
being with all the members for 3 hours and getting to know them
better. It's hard here because everyone lives in pueblos that are like
an hour out of town so to get around and visit them costs a lot of
money and takes up entire days. So Sunday's are the best when we all
get together :) As the 4 Elders here, we have made a Branch Mission
Plan that we have thought about, prayed about, and fasted about a lot.
It contains goals about baptisms, less-actives, recent-converts, and
involving the members. The whole idea of the plan is to help the
members realize that missionaries come and go, but they, the members,
are the ones that will be here and can have the most impact. We
presented it to President Yubero, Hermano Julio who is our ward
mission leader, and the presidents of every organization in the
branch. They were all super happy and excited to hear about the plan,
so that's a good sign :) This work is incredible and I'm so happy to
be apart of it!

This was a good week :) I continue to learn more and more every single
day and am so grateful to be a missionary here in Valladolid. We will
see what happens with transfers, but no matter what, I'll work with it
because the Lord knows what I need. Thank you all for your love and
support. I am so blessed to have the best family and friends in the
whole world!! I pray for you all every day :) have a wonderful week!

Con Amor,

Elder Smith

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