Monday, December 8, 2014

12/8/2014 - Week 6 - El Paso still

This Christmas season is full of wonderful things!  Although I miss going out and looking at Christmas lights with friends and family, and the wonderful things at home, - I am excited for the work opportunities. I want to thank the Mapels for the Thanksgiving card they sent me.  Big things are in the works for them - their family will be sooo soooo blessed with Gavin going to the Philippines. Greg touched my heart so much - because he is wanting to do great things with himself that I know he is very capable of.   Elder Mapel going on his mission will bless so many lives!  And he leaves so soon - which is so exciting - he has no time to procrastinate. I know he will do fine - he got his Eagle project done in no time.
My mission president has asked us to do something very hard this next month.  He wants us to sing Christmas carols, as a companionship, to strangers daily. Talk about getting out of my comfort zone. But the nice thing is – some of the doors we sang at only spoke Spanish, so I couldn't understand most of what they were saying.  We just handed them a card, said some of the ‘Espaniolish’ I know, and were on our merry way.  I know that the Lord provides for those that are obedient, serve others, and do the hard things.  The Lord gives us obstacles - only to overcome - and so we can appreciate the blessings that come from that.  This Christmas season lose yourself in others. Do your home and visiting teaching.  There are so many people in need.  Sometimes all they need is a happy hello and someone to visit them. 
We watched the Christmas Devotional last night with one of our investigator families - and made scones like at home.  The J------'s are Elder Ostberg and I's little peace of family. The message was from D. Todd Christofferson.  He told about a whole town giving a sick boy Christmas in October, because he wouldn't make it. So the whole town rallied around Ethan. Just like eagle point rallied around Ethan Jostad. Sometimes it doesn't seem fair - it seems when innocent people pass away it isn't always fair. In Alma, chapter 40, it tells us that death is a thing of joy - because it is a step necessary for each and every one for eternal happiness. Jesus died so that we can overcome the trials of death and be with our eternal families once again. Jesus Christ's death seemed horrible at the time; but as we look back, it was the most important event in history, and the reason that each and every one of us can have hope for a brighter day. Just like the sad death of Joseph Smith came to pass - lots of good came from the trials the church faced along with the pioneers - and all the way down to the trials each of us face today.
This Christmas season share the gift of Jesus Christ - make it sacred to you. Things become sacred to us through some form of sacrifice - it’s in the word sacred. Give a little more this year, and want a little less.   I guarantee, you will get so much more out of it than you can comprehend. The joy I receive on my mission from helping others is the greatest thing I have experienced in my life yet. I am so thankful to be a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ.  He is our head, and guides his prophets and apostles.  I love my Mommy, and my Dad, and my Sister, and all of my friends and family. Feliz Navidad.

P.S. - This was transfer week. I am staying in El Paso for 6 more weeks so P-day is on Monday.  Next transfer day will be on the 19th of January.  I love you all so so much and am praying that you will all do well financially. Sell my Jeep! My bike is starting to break.   I can’t afford a new snazzy one that works - and I need money for an iPad too... I did the math and we have rode about 800 miles this month on our bikes....... I love you and hope work is going really great talk to you next Tuesday :) Pet the weasel [nickname for our Dog, Friday] for me and say Rick loves her :)

This is one of our recent converts. He was baptized less than a week before I got here.  He plays football for UTEP and is from Juarez originally.  So blessed to know him.

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