Monday, February 24, 2014

Week 31: Change of Scenery‏

A lot changed this week. First things first: Where in the World is Carmen San Diego? In this instance, Carmen San Diego is....Elder Monson, and the world is....Guatemala...
Anyways, Im on the border! About a 20 minute drive away from the El Salvidorian border (some Elders have pictures) in Jutiapa. It´s a really great area that Im already in love with this area, and incredibly happy for the change of scenery.
Although it is....INCREDIBLY hot. This past week I could feel myself melting on the couches as we went from lesson to lesson, its just crazy.
And the problem is that it´s only about to get worse...March and April are the hottest ¨Summer Months¨ Yaaaaayyyyy....I think im going to burn to death...
Second order of business: My companion´s name is Elder Vieira, He´s from Brazil, and he´s awesome. He´s been in the mission for two more transfers than I have and we´re getting along really well! Who knows...maybe I might pick up a little bit of Portugese!
We´ve been teaching a lot of different people this week, the most progress we´ve seen was with the Lopez Family, who have been really interested! Yesterday they came to church and loved it! Yesterday we invited them to be baptized and they accepted! But we didn´t get the chance to set a date because they had so many questions about the gospel! I guess that´s a good sign!
All I know is that I am super excited to be here in a new area, doing new things, teaching new people and working with a new companion! Yesterday I wrote in my journal that I was....Happy. Legitimately happy.
So don´t worry about me...I´ll try not to melt to death like the bad guys in Raiders of the Lost Ark. But in the meantime....I think I´ll be just fine.
Woo Hoo! Church is True!
new companion, Elder Vieira and Elder Monson

church building

Monday, February 17, 2014

Week 30: So Long, San Juan‏

Saying good-bye to San Juan families
It´s been confirmed. I leave San Juan Sacetepequez tomorrow morning.
Although it did not come as a surprise, the news hit hard. Last week my mother told me to ¨bloom where you´re planted¨ and the phrase stuck with me all week. 
Did I bloom? I would like to think so, but for some reason I was never quite sure. But then I began to think about how things where when I first came to the area....and how so much had changed since then. Part of me would like to say that I made a difference...and then I´m reminded: I did nothing. The Lord used me as an instrument to perform his work.
It´s much better that way.
So, How was the week this week?
I guess you could say that it was a good one. We went to the temple on Tuesday as you already know, the experience was fantastic....and it took 3 and a half hours to get home by it wasn´t a super cool way to end the day. The rest of the week was spent looking for new investigators and tying up the loose ends with the old ones. We found a few golden people in San Pedro Sacetepequez, (the other city under our stewardship) and it was great to be able to see things progress...
...but it was also kind of difficult to focus, knowing that I would be leaving in a week.
It was a fast/slow week. But one thing is for certain: I will always be grateful for the things I learned here in San Juan, I really have done a lot of growing up...I think, or at least I hope I have....

temple trip... missionaries on a mission
But´s been a wild ride, I can´t say that I´m the same kid who got on the airplane for Guatemala 30 weeks ago.
And the scary thing is that I still have a long way to go before this is all over.
Anyways, I´ve rambled for too long already. But I´m super excited to see what happens tomorrow....change is good (and crazy) and there´s going to be a lot of it going on this coming week. I have a lot to say....but really nothing left to say at all.
So long San Juan....if I didn´t bloom there at least I sprouted a little bit...and wherever I´m repotted I´lll face another adventure there.
Holy cannoli.
Nothing to do now but wait...
"Seriously, where is my mom and her amazing packing skills when I need her?"

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Week 29: Psych! (untitled) ....but AWESOME!‏

Psych!  I guess I should have waited a few more hours to post that Tyler didn't write this week because at 1:00pm our time he e-mailed!  Oh how wonderful...

To describe this week in a word: SWEET!
For a number of reasons including:
1. A Baptism/Wedding
2. A Trip to the Temple
So...where do I start? Well, first of all with the Baptism: Eswin is his name, and he´s a soldier in the Guatemalan Army. he´s been living with his girlfriend (who is already a member) a, this last sunday we had a wedding for the two lovebirds. It was a touching experience as both of them, Jeinfer and Eswin were overjoyed to be married at last! So cute, to see them so in love! Directly after the wedding (like...5 minutes after) Eswin got dressed in white and entered the waters of baptism! The day couldn´t have been better!
I mean, in case you haven´t noticed....baptisms are some of the best moments in the mission. All the work that was put forth to get the investigator there...and they made it.
So, Sunday was a good day :)
Secondly, today, I enjoyed a fantastic trip to the temple...made even greater by the miracles that were seen to get us there safe and sound. We left this morning from San Juan at 7 and hopped on a bus down the mountain....25 minutes into the ride we came to a stop at the tail end of a long strand of cars and buses. Not too far ahead, there had been a car accident...and nobody could pass down,
We sat for a good half hour, watching the cars in front of us throw in the towel and come back up the mountain. To turn back was the last thing that those in our party wanted to do...we only have the opportunity to go to the temple every 6 months....and today was the day...
Humbled, I suggested that we should pray for a passage to be made. When I looked up, I saw that we (My companion, Elder Tamayo and Elder Chavez) were the only ones left on the bus. So, with determination we decided that we were going to the temple no matter what it took. Stepping down onto the street we began to walk our way to the other side of the capital city (and of the mission). As we started to do so we heard, ¨Ya pueden pasar!¨ ( you can go through now!) from a man further down the slope, motioning for the remaining cars to move forward.
We ran up to the bus and made our way to the temple.
If we show to God that we are willing to do all we can to reach a goal, he will make up the difference. While we didn´t walk all the way to the temple, we showed that we were willing to, and for that we recieved the blessings of the House of the Lord!
The mission is awesome like that!

I love you all and hope your week is fantastic, remember who you are and what you stand for! Walt Disney Says, ¨Keep Moving Forward¨

Week 29: NO LETTER!

We didn't hear from Tyler yesterday.  I kept hoping that an email would arrive before I went to sleep last night but as of Tuesday morning no news.  And my philosophy is "no news is good news" So we shall just wait and see what kind of adventure kept him busy on his preparation day.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Week 28: Just Keep Swimming‏

¨Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, what do we do? We swim. Swim. Swim.¨ Dory sings as her and Marlin swim down into the abyss after the fallen diver´s mask.
I came across a reference to Finding Nemo in the January issue of ¨The Liahona¨ and it got me in the mood. No matter what the season is, if it´s the best of times or the worst of times, the mentally dysfunctional Blue Tang has the best of philosophies.
Just keep swimming.
Ah ya... 
It´s comparable to the 4th (and hardest) step in the Gospel of Jesus Christ: Endure to the End. Gaining faith is easy, repenting is a bit harder, baptism is a weighty covenant but chief among all principles is the requires diligence and drive, perseverance and...endurance.
Keep that fire going! Adapt Nephi´s philosophy when he said ¨Rejoice, O my heart, and cry unto the Lord, and say: O Lord, I will praise thee forever; yea, my soul will rejoice in thee, my God, and the rock of my salvation.¨ (2ndNephi: 4: 30) We´re here to rejoice in our God forever! Not just for a day or two!
And so was this week...It was my turn to learn how to endure WELL. Things have been going slowly...and days feel like weeks when there´s nothing to do. We´re trying really hard to find more people to teach and somehow, we keep finding ourselves back on square one.
Everything else is going well though! January (which was hanging by threads) finally finished! How I love the month of February! The world is leaving it´s winter slumber and the first sprouts of a new year begin to take root. It´s not too late to change your course, but sufficient headway has been made as to give one a feeling of accomplishment.
Valentines Day is on the horizon...Singles Awareness Day for most of the world (including the Missionaries). But the greatest love that we can share and feel is that of our Savior Jesus Christ!
Just Keep Swimming!
Endure to the End!
I´ve just got one more scripture I´d like to share from 2nd Nephi ¨Awake, my soul! No longer droop in sin. Rejoice, O my heart, and give place no more for the enemy of my soul.¨
-Elder Monson

cartoon drawing, he really enjoys cartooning

journal notes
planner cover... love the "awesome" pose