Monday, September 16, 2013

Training again!

Hello everyone!!

Man, was it a crazy week last week! It was like 95 degrees on Monday and Tuesday when I was with Elder Fullmer, then Tuesday until today has been FREEZING. I hate this climate change down here, it's not letting me heal completely!!! I´ve been with a runny nose and congestion back and forth for too long haha. But, my new trainee is loving it!! There were like 20 new elders that got here, and only two were latinos, it's CRAZY. So many young, fresh from the MTC elders and a bunch of trainers all getting thrown into the same mix. They took our ties from us trainers and gave one to each new elder, and he had to figure out whose it was, that's how we found out who we were assigned to. When I was assigned, I realized I hadn't talked to him at all before while we were all getting introduced haha, so that was pretty embarrassing. But we´ve talked plenty since then, so there´s no problem. There were also 5 latina hermanas too! That was crazy, and one from Utah. We were just PACKED the whole day. Honestly, the meeting part with President and the assistants lasted 1/3 of the time, and the rest was all interviews, lunch, and get to know each other time.

So my new companion is Elder Southwick, from Utah. He, get ready for this, is 18!!! I can't believe they´ve arrived here now. So, he was in the MTC for six weeks and now has been here for one! Crazy right?? I feel bad, I can't imagine what it would be like coming straight here, since I didn't do that. So the language is definitely a hard challenge. But the good thing is, he´s super excited, happy, and funny, and he doesn't get embarrassed easily, so that will help him out a lot!! I definitely wasn't like that when I first got here. So anyway, it's way weird to think that he just barely graduated, like Tyler and Courtney and all them.
And then seeing Solomon and Kate and Nathan is just SUPER WEIRD, I can't believe they´re in high school. But that's so cool, that sounds like they have a very strong group of members in the high school at this moment! Can I just say, I can't believe Solomon is a senior as well? I know they´re all growing up, but they were always the younger kids, and now they´re where I was at just years ago. Alright, enough of that.
So the familia Muñoz is doing very well! Fabian said the opening prayer in sacrament meeting, the closing prayer in gospel principles, and the closing prayer in priesthood as well (I just mention that because when we first started teaching them, they all refused to pray and told Maria to do it; and now look at them!!), and Lucila gave a talk about friendships! It was AWESOME! She didn't seem nervous or scared at all, and kept her composure the whole time. I tried to imagine my first time speaking, and I'm pretty sure I was red, watering eyes, and shaky voice haha. But nope, she did an awesome job. The only bummer was that Maria was going to invite her dad to come, and we were going to start teaching them, but then she wasn't able to call him, since they have a broken cell phone. She was going to use her daughter's phone, but the daughter disappeared in the morning, and didn't come back in time. So that was a bummer, but this week we´ll foresee that and make sure it happens! Maria was super excited to invite him because we talked about what she could say and practiced with her, it was great!
So to answer your question, yes I´m district leader. When Elder Smith left I was the only one in the district that had more than 2 months in Argentina besides the zone leaders (Elder Pyne and Elder Fullmer arrived together, then a mini missionary...), so by default it fell to me. It was a weird change, I wasn't prepared at all haha. But, that's why you trust in the Lord and just do everything you can for everyone else. That's all I have done, haha.
So about the Everyday Missionary book, I´ve gotten about halfway through, I think. I just read it a little before going to bed, because our studies for the 12 weeks with the newer elders is supposed to be based in the scriptures and Preach My Gospel. So I´ve been doing my best with that, it's been a really good couple of days with Elder Southwick already. But it's a good book! I like how he explains lots of different scenarios and perspectives that lots of us have probably had but that we can never express. I'll definitely be using some of them when I get back!
So Nathan is looking pretty good with those plaid outfits... and MY shoes!! I guess I always forget that we left like two closets full of clothes for him to use. What a spoiled guy! I´m glad the shoes still look nice though. Where on earth did he get that suit and pants?? I like it, obviously not together, but it's pretty cool! Sounds like they had fun for homecoming week! That's sad that we almost tied the football game! It's been a long time since we´ve won haha, but oh well. That is one CRAZY costume that Solomon has on, I bet they probably made that, huh? He´s definitely got the Polynesian culture running in his veins! What a stud. I can't believe he´s a senior and will be going on a mission in less than a year possibly! And that dress Kate has is like a perfect match for Tangled, that was very creative of her. Everyone down here of course thinks she´s beautiful just for her long blonde hair :).... then I tell them she´s only 14 and they don't believe me. It's a classic. You're welcome Kate! :)
So this Thursday we are going to Mendoza as a zone for a meeting with Elder Nuñez, one of the Seventy, I believe, and it's going to be a very spiritual meeting. He sent us 6 sets of scriptures to study before this meeting, and I wanted to share those with you so you could read them and get into the mood of sharing the gospel! Mosiah 28:3, 3 Nephi 28:4-10, Ether 12:13-15, Helaman 10:3-5, Alma 29:1-2, and 1 Nephi 2:16. I read all of those and was super excited to share the gospel, and it will be the same for you! These are 6 different instances in the Book of Mormon, in the lives of different people. But becuase they had the truth, and were filled with the Spirit and with so much faith, they all received the same exact feeling, a desire to share and teach to EVERYONE. And that is an attitude I´m still working hard on developing, because I´m here for lots of reasons, and a lot of those reasons are people, who need my help, and it hasn't been easy. It's not easy, and will never be easy, but that quote you shared Mom was perfect. We all will at one point in life or another pass through our own Gethsemane, but I really liked your insight, that when we find ourselves on that personal path to "Calvary," we need not feel alone or unwanted or forgotten, because being there automatically puts us with the BEST company we could hope for. Our Savior Jesus Christ is already there. It's been hard, but I look forward to those moments because they are when I MOST can trust in the Lord and expect even more blessings and help when I need them. It's amazing.
Since last week was a blur and super short, I don't really have much to report for now! But thank you for all your thoughts and prayers, I feel them always! I know this restored Church and this restored Gospel are true, not because I was convinced, rather, because it was confirmed to me. It's always about our feelings in this Gospel, because with the Spirit at our side, God has the chance to guide us with those feelings to make us the people HE needs and wants, and knows we can be. I wouldn't be who I am today if it weren't for the changes I´ve made to make myself available for that help and guidance. I recommend the same for everyone, because there is a big difference in how happy I was before and how happy I am now! You´ll see the same thing!
Have a good week everyone! I love you all!

Elder Tyson Gibbons :)

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