Thursday, May 19, 2016

May 18 - learning to dance in the rain

Hey all!!

Well, the rainy season has officially started here in Mexico City, and I love it! I walk around without a jacket or umbrella in torrential downpours because it just reminds me of Seattle, haha whenever anyone tells me that I am crazy I just tell them that it rains like this pretty much every day where I live. But, I am for sure going to appreciate the rain more when I am home!

First update, working in Espartaco has been a lot harder than we expected! I have never opened an area in my entire mission, and I have so much respect now for the elders that have done it. It’s even harder because well with the circumstances for why the other elders got taken out, they didn’t leave us with very good records or with many people to teach but we are doing our best! The other night we were there and we got totally lost! We had to spend the night in the other elders’ house and we weren’t sure how to get there so we asked the last hermana that we taught how to get there and she told us how to get back but the little colony was like a maze! We ended up running in a complete circle, but it was a fun experience!

Our area is going great! Paco, Dulce and Tomi are progressing really well but please have them in your prayers because they are all passing through some hard things right now that might cause them get baptized a little later than expected! Tomi is having a lot of opposition from her family! Paco needs to get married and Dulce is looking for a work, but all of the jobs and all her interviews are on Sundays :(.

But, we have two new people that we found last week that have us really excited! We have this hermano named Jorge Gomez, who is awesome! I have never seen anyone so ready to learn, he is always like taking notes during our lessons, it’s awesome! And this Sunday was his first time in church. Then yesterday we found the Santiago Sanchez family, and they are super awesome as well! It’s a family of 6, who years ago were investigating the church but the elders had changes and they never heard from them again. We had a super powerful first lesson with them yesterday, and we are hoping big things for them. Finding them was truly a blessing from the Lord!

Yesterday we had a really cool zone conference on really helping the investigators to understand the Sabbath Day. We started out just by calling up missionaries to practice with us as if we were their investigators without telling them anything. And every single one made it sound like going to church is just a requirement to get baptized. It’s true, but if we teach like that we aren’t preparing these people to keep renewing this sacred covenant for the rest of their lives, so we just did something really simple. After Elder Crandall and I gave an example of how it should be done and then we just had them practice for the rest of the conference until every missionary felt like they could do it well. I really loved it because before we have done practices but they haven’t been the focus, but we realized that they really should be the most important thing and that’s what we did! That might be my last zone conference as a ZL so it was really fun! The assistants and the sister training leaders put on some good activities too!

Another fun thing from last week is that after a lot of things going on in the mission and people that were needed in different areas, and I ended up being assigned with Elder Card, another ZL to go and clean out a house that we aren’t going to be using anymore. It was super fun; Elder Card is one of my best friends from the mission! Way back in San Pedro we were in the same district and it was fun to be able to spend time with him again! We got to run up and down three flights of stairs with fridges, beds and everything else in that an absolute downpour! But it kind of sums up my whole mission, things are never going to go as we want them to go, but if we do our part, if we do the right thing, and more importantly if we are found in the service of our fellow beings and our God, even the rainiest day will be an exciting adventure, a learning experience, a day of laughter, and a memory forever!

I love the mission so much, I love serving people, and I love just knowing I am doing His work!

Elder Stout

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