December 14, 2009
Merry Christmas to all!
I hope that you are all just doing absolutely amazing and I hope that this week goes well for all of you! Good luck with finals (those who have to take finals) and I hope that all goes well!
Grandma, I feel terrible that I did not wish you a happy birthday last week so . . . Happy Birthday! I hope that you had an incredible birthday!
A lot of you have asked about Christmas and how it will be down here. To be honest, I actually have no idea what it is going to be like. But when the mission president was down here we were able to celebrate Christmas with him and his wife and all of the elders on the island and that was awesome. We had zone conference on Tuesday morning and after the conference was over we all hopped into taxis and they drove us to a huge hotel resort on the coast. We hopped out and went downstairs and there in the hotel was an awesome tepanyaki type restaurant! It was so fun.
It was funny to see all of the missionaries packed into the restaurant but it was a really great experience and one that I will never forget. It was so nice for the President and his wife to do that for us!
Anyways, thanks to all of you who sent letters to the mission office before they came down. They came down with letters for every elder. But I had the blessing and the privilege to receive upwards of 30+ letters so to all of you who wrote me a letter thank you so much! I hope you enjoyed Paris Caitlyn welcome back to Utah, I'm sure you are loving it hahahahah! Anyways thank you so much for your love and support. I have been able to stretch out the letters until Christmas and I counted and today I found that I have just enough to count down one per day until Christmas! You are all such a blessing to me. Thank you for all that you do!
This week was so awesome! The biggest news this week is that we found a great new family that is just so awesome and so prepared. We found them on Wednesday night when we were tracting and they invited us right in and sat us down outside under their great big palm tree, which happened to be decked out with Christmas lights. It was something I never thought I would see or experience in my life, but it was incredible.
I was amazed at how much the Lord had prepared the dad and this family to hear the message. The dad told us that all week he had been watching the Jesus week specials that the history channel was doing and he had a ton of questions for us. Besides that the 13 year-old kid said that he is sick of not going to church. He begs his mom every week but they just don't go. She said it's because she doesn't feel that the church they attend is right and so why waste your time. We taught them the first part of the first lesson and the dad absolutely loved it. We went back the next night to finish the lesson and he told us that he explained the apostasy to his pastor friends the way that we had explained it to him and he said that they all said that it was true and they had never heard of a better way to explain. Oh how I love glass tables. Anyways, the lesson the next night was just incredible.
The thing that I love about this family is that they are already inviting people to come and hear our message. Anyways, on this night they invited their sister who lived across the street. We told about the restoration of the gospel and they absolutely loved it. We introduced the Book of Mormon and they all had wide eyes and open mouths. They couldn't believe what we were telling them and the excitement that they had was just incredible.
The dad ran inside and grabbed a Book of Mormon that the mission president in the 70s had given out as a gift, but the rest of the family wanted their own too so we gave each of them their own and they were ridiculously excited. We told the teenager about the stripling warriors and the other cool stories that the Book of Mormon contains and he couldn't wait to read it. He told us that he can't wait until he can be a missionary.
As you can imagine we were on cloud 99 for the rest of the week and it was just an incredible lesson. On Tuesday we have a return appointment with them and I am not sure that I have ever been so excited for a lesson in my mission. This family is so prepared and I hope that God will bless us with the opportunity to lead them to the waters of baptism.
Our baptismal date, Vivian, is doing just great. This week we were able to visit her 4 or 5 times with members and that was just incredible. She has not touched coffee since we committed her to living the word of wisdom last week and last night we made baptismal plans for this Saturday. I haven't been able to be a part of a baptism since Wilton and Myra so I am absolutely pumped for this opportunity that we have to see Vivian enter the gate to the rest of her life in Christ on Saturday.
On Saturday we had a funny day. The mission is sure a roller coaster. As you can imagine this week was just a great week with zone conference and with finding this new family and with Vivian progressing and everything. But as most of you know in the mission when you are up high you know that sooner or later you are going to be brought down. On Saturday we had a day packed full of lessons. We had a great first lesson in the morning and we had just stopped tracting and called to confirm our next appointment.
All of the sudden my bike tire went flat so we walked to the bike store to try and buy a cheap tube that could get us through the day. It was a blessing that we got there just before they closed. I bought the new tube and went outside to put it on, by this time the store was closed and when I unrolled the tube we noticed that it would never fit my bike! They sold me a little kids tube! Hahah! It was so crazy.
Me and Elder Bailey talked about how weird that day was. We ended up taking the rest of the afternoon trying to get our bikes back home because we were quite a ways from the house. Elder Bailey and I love to work and needless to say that day was a hard day for us.
It was cool to see the complete 180 that the lord blessed us with the next day on Sunday. The day before everything had gone wrong but yesterday everything went right! I know that story may not mean a lot to you guys but it was just cool to experience that low but have the Lord bring us out of that horrible day and bless us with a day that went perfectly! He loves us and knows us perfectly, I have no doubt about that in my mind.
I hope that all is going well for ya'll back home! I do miss the snow but it honestly doesn't even feel like Christmas so there really isn't a problem with homesickness or anything. I miss you all sometimes and wish I could be there freezing my butt off with you sometimes but then again, I know that this is where the Lord wants me to be. There is nowhere else that I would want to be right now other then here.
Thanks again for all you that you do! The letters were absolutely awesome! I hope that you all have an amazing and great week and good luck with finals those of you who have to endure through that! I'll be praying for you! hahah!
I love you guys so much. We are going to build sand castles on the beach today which should be fun, Don't worry, we aren't going to go swimming! They don't send buck dogs to the islands. I love you guys! Have an absolutely amazing week! Merry Christmas again!