Monday, February 25, 2013

Another week come and gone!

Hey Mom! And everyone else too!
Another week come and gone! I don't know how the time is passing like this. It's crazy. The week is so long! Yet here I am at the computer again talking to everyone. But, this last week was very good in itself. We had made some big plans to do visits with different members for the next weeks, to go to their part of town, since we divided all of our area in 7 secttions, and we have names and days to go, so finally we are going to complete our goal of working with members more fully! The bishop and his wife have always helped us, but now we have a lot of members asking us when we are going to pass by their house and do visits with them. This last week, if it served for nothing else, would be satisfactory, because I realized just how much confidence the ward has in Elder Galicia and me. It is good to know that we have worked hard enough and brought enough success so that they can realize our efforts and have that desire to help us even more! Last night we went to the bishop's house and he left to go to his "finca" to get some fruit. (I still don't know if he buys it or what, being Sunday and all. But I don't think that is as big of a deal down here.) But he came back with literally 6 bananas, 4 apples, and 8 oranges, but only let us eat them. I always feel bad when the members buy us things and don't even share with their kids or anything, but it's also nice to know they care for us so much. These people here are just awesome. I love this ward! But not because of the social aspect or the friends I´ve made, but because they really have the desire to help us do our job as we help them with theirs. I see a lot of future success coming up this next month, and the next ones to come.

So Mom for the stake choir we are just singing hymns from the hymnbook, not as fun as the songs I sang in choir or anything (I still have trouble not yawning during regular hymns... it's a curse). But we are singing Joseph Smith´s First Prayer, Did You Think to Pray? and a few others that we haven´t learned yet. But about the choir.. yesterday we showed up and the pianist didn't show up. So she asked us again if we knew how to play piano. So I said well I can at least play the parts for each group. And instead of helping the groups then singing, I was at the piano playing parts and (thankfully) just playing the rhythym of the hymn the whole time, and singing the alto part to help them(never thought I´d really use my falsetto voice) or the tenor part, or the bass part. The basses kept complaining that I was playing the piano instead of singing with them, but I told them they had the part just fine from what I could hear. So that was just a really interesting two hours. But I was glad I was of a little more use! Although I felt embarrassed more than any other time that I didn't really know how to play. I´m sorry Mom. But it was a good practice, and I got to play a little more, since I haven´t played since I left my last area.

This week we had to go to the offices to renew Elder Galiciás visa, so I received one package from Jenn and Scott! That was super exciting! But there weren´t any letters, for anyone in our zone. It was weird. In two weeks we´ll have a zone meeting and I´m sure something else will show up. But I´m in no rush! The package was great Jenn and Scott, thank you so much! Especially the Dr. Pepper jelly beans. I was terrified that I had forgotten how my favorite drink tasted! Even if they are just jelly beans, they are better than endlesss coke down here. coke, fanta, sprite, and the occasional pepsi. But the coke is better down here, the fanta is better in Europe, and the pepsi is awful here so I would say it's better back in the good ol USA. But yeah! And thank you for the letters! Be expecting letters in the next couple weeks.

But yeah, while we were in the offices, I got to see president of course, always a fun time! Along with talking with some elders that I know. I saw Elder Day my papá again, so we had a good talk about the last few months. Also saw Elder Taylor who left our district this transfer. Then I saw Elder Ashby of all people, my fellow Idahoan! That was super fun. so I got to talk to a lot of elders I haven´t seen for awhile. It was a good day.

I´m glad to hear that things went well with the surgeries (Jeff's cousin and a friend of ours both had major surgeries this past week)! Also that nothing worse happened with the fire. (A house on our street had a fire in their garage in the middle of the night last week--no one was hurt, thankfully.) I don't know how you are such deep sleepers, I got the opposite genes from someone! I have the hardest time sleeping deeply. every little noise wakes me up. That makes it bascially impossible to sleep here, with dogs barking outside our 1/2 inch thick windows and mosquitos and everything. It's a curse too. But oh well. I'm just glad nothing happened. Also about the jazz choir thing, I didn't know that they had judges for the pianists! I am pretty sure if I was in your spot, I would´ve reproved the guy a little bit since I am basically doing it by my will to help out the choir, but like you said, you don't have any interest in being a jazz artist! I have to admit that that was the reason I didn't want to do jazz band anymore. I'm not creative, although I like jazz a lot, but I can't improvise or anything like that, and when professionals came and made us do all these practices, I hated it haha. So yeah, that was a shame, but I'm glad you have more patience than me and maintained your composure! Way to be a good example :) That happens a lot here too though, when people say stuff about the United States or gringos or the Mormons, I always want to flip out as a first reaction because it makes me mad when people say so many things uneducatedly. But, then I tell myself that I really am no better, in fact I'm far worse in many other ways than them, and that helps me maintain the love that I have so fervently prayed for. It's always a reaction to flip out, but thankfully I think I´m overcoming that reaction, step by step. Just gotta love how much I'm improving! But I won't brag about it, because even with all the great changes I've made in this time, I still have such a long way to go.

Wow that is one crazy situation with Shannon! That would be a cool mission, but I guess getting married is a pretty cool mission too haha. Both have their perks, and both require going to the temple so I guess either way she wins, right? That is pretty crazy how things worked out though. It sounds like lots of girls are wanting to go on a mission, but there´s also lots more people proposing to them too :P

I have to reflect Nathan´s statement about Paul. He really is awesome! Now that we just finished our Book of Mormon challenge this last Saturday, I am going to start reading the New Testament again, beacuse it really does interest me, I just never had the right state of mind to read it and learn things back in high school. Sorry Bro. Sell, I know you are disappointed :/ I read a lot in seminary! Just not in the right state of mind. But I want to read all about the apostles and learn more of the favorite scriptures and everything, because everytime anyone asks us about the Bible or such and such a scripture, I hardly remember where it's at, but Elder Galicia thankfully knows a lot. So I have plans to improve that! But I have to say the same thing for Peter too, he is pretty awesome as well. I still can't believe Nathan and Kate are learning so much more than me. I obviously didn't follow the right example!

So this last week I finally got to play soccer again! But in the street, in missionary clothes, and with Elder Schirner, our zone leader. He plays futbol better than me, and when we saw a family playing soccer he said we should go play with them. I said no because all my companions I've had have told me that we only play sports on Monday. But Elder Schirner showed me that well, yes that's a rule, but also there is a spiritual side to the law, and the law itself. We went to play, because there was a FAMILY. We played, had a lot of fun, made a mess of our clothes, but that opened up an non-awkward-situation environment to talk to them, get to know them, and teach. Which is what we did. I LOVED IT. Plus it showed me that you really can apply anything to the gospel if you try hard enough! And you never know the people before you talk, turns out they have talked with missionaries before, and that's always a good sign! Less explaining for us to do, and more opportunity to be invited in! So that was a really good learning experience. Even though the interview for one of our investigators didn't happen (that was the reason the zone leaders came to our area-to interview someone: things just got complicated with the interview and in the end with this investigator, particularly his son) the day still ended in a really good way! I realized that you have to use your talents that you have to the maximum, because they are the talents that God has given you to reach out to the people around you. Maybe Elder Schirner struggles with his Spanish a little, but he plays futbol REALLY well, and the people realize that, and it catches their interest, and opens up opportunities to talk. So I will be watching for more chances in the future!
One thing I like about divisions, you always learn something from the other companion if you are willing to humble yourself and look deeply. Every person that enters our life has a purpose being there, we just have to drop our pride sometimes and say to ourselves "alright, I'm going to forget myself and try and learn what is there for me to learn from this person." If we all went through life doing that, well I can't even imagine how much better we would be as members, and citizens of our community, or even a nation or world as a whole! Doesn't matter if the person is good, bad, different, we can learn something from them! I have been trying to do this even more recently, because I know I have a lot to learn and to change still. So yeah, that's a nice attitude to have! I hope we all can try a little harder to do that, every day, in whatever circumstance. It's a win win situation, there´s no way we´re going to lose if we find that little pearl of great price that will help us be better! So why not try?

Well I'm glad to know all went relatively well this last week! I can say the same here. It's been a calm yet fast paced week. And yet it goes by slow sometimes. Time, you will always baffle me. It hurts my brain thinking about the theory of relativity haha, but at the same time, some parts of it make a lot of sense. Anyway, that is bascially all the main stuff that happened this week! It ended with a really good Sunday, and now a really good Monday to start off another week! Another week to learn, grow, love, smile, laugh, care, and share! Let's all try our best to do each of those things! I know this Church is true, and I know it all has to do with FEELING. I wouldn't be a member if I didn't have that feeling of belonging, of being closer personally with my Father in Heaven and with Christ. I know it's true, and that the blessings that are found in the church, by the right authority, are superior to all things of the world. Again, I wouldn't be here if I hadn't given my efforts, done my part to find out. That's all it takes, just your best efforts and God is obligated to bless us, whether with knowledge, an answer, or something we asked for, or didn't ask for, the fact is He is obligated! So lets take advantage of that as well! Whatever you are searching for in your life, the best person to ask for help is none other than God Himself, and His servants that He has chosen.

I love you Mom, and the rest of you too! Thank you for your examples for me and your prayers and thoughts. Keep on being awesome!

Elder Tyson Gibbons

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