Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Week 13: Real Steel

There is a movie trope that heralds back to the dawn of film making: The Robot Movie. Say what you will but the majority of these pictures go something like this: Perfect society, everything is clean and functional, there`s robots and they do their job to help humanity, they´re a little creepy, but...who cares? There`s always one who has doubts on how much humans rely on the technology and things are  brought to a boil when...the robots become self-aware and start taking over.
It`s a pretty good metaphor for how this week was...and, admittedly, it was the hardest one yet.
Elder Hernandez got transferred and I had three new elders to teach the area of San Juan to...it was a lot of weight to put on my shoulders, but I was pretty sure that I could make it through respectively unscathed.

This is about how I feel right now
My new comp? Elder Alvarez, and out of sheer serendipity, he comes from Tuxla Gutierrez Mexico, the very city where the other Elder Monson is serving! ...and he`s a robot. His movements are mechanical and driven, a slave to the rules. Things were very...very...trying... I felt like I stood in peril at every hour, I began reading the Missionary Handbook like it was his user`s manual, like it had the keys to the riddle that masked his persona. We only got through 12 hours until our first argument and 18 more until the 2nd. I started to slip into a kind of EXISTENCE...a depression, a smooth blanket of sadness that coated my heart. I related very much to the second verse of the Hymn "Master the Tempest is Raging" when it says: 
found this while reading the scriptures... inspiring!
Master, with anguish of spirit
I bow in my grief today;
The depths of my sad heart are troubled—
Oh, waken and save, I pray!
Torrents of sin and of anguish
Sweep o’er my sinking soul;
And I perish! I perish! dear Master—
Oh, hasten, and take control.
All I wanted was my old comp back and for life to go on like normal because it was taking a great deal of my own energy to make it through every day.
And then something happened.
It just sort of...stopped. The winds and the waves obeyed the will of the Master and I was delivered. The clashes between my companion and I just sort of subsided as I tried to find ways to serve him the best I could and realize that everything is for a purpose. I`m here in San Juan for a reason and I have this comp for a reason and so I can definitely pull through!
I turned my problems outwards and started focusing on the area here in San Juan...which, is admittedly...dead. This last week we contacted 331 people and didn´t get a single visit out of it, none of our investigators are coming to church and...so we have...nothing to go on.
And my comp, the Robot became self-aware. He only has six weeks left of his entire mission and he just stopped with all the diligence and dropped off the map. His personality did a 360 and he STOPPED caring and I started doing all the work while he broke rules!
AAAAUUUGGGHHH....so that`s the story of the week...It`s been a trial...but I can make it through!
...wow. Sorry this letter`s a downer....I'm sure next week will be great!

(Pray for Elder Monson and Elder Alvarez and the people in San Juan)

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