¿Como anda la vaina? (This is a great phrase. vaina is literally a sword sheath, but really it just means whatever you want it to and anda means walks. So it means "How walks the sword sheath" literally but really just means What's up? haha)
Anyway, things are good here in the 961. With all the Christmas festivities and stuff its been a bit hectic, but its all good fun. I don't remember if I told you that I had already eaten two Christmas dinners before that massive sandwich on Christmas, but I did, and it was awesome. The work is going really well, and that's nice. Its way more fun when you have success. To answer dad's question, the second 18 year old didn't get baptized, he's on vacation until the 8th, but he's got a date for the 12th - and he's super solid. The people here are pretty awesome, I really enjoy working with them everyday.
Thanks for the emails as always. Here`s my responses:
Dad - 1. The Book of Mormon isn't a problem at all. The majority of the people are willing to accept it. The problem we have is when people are so blinded by their belief in the Bible that they can't accept another book. I describe them as people who believe in the Bible, but not in God. (Not to be mean, its fairly true. They won't pray, or read, and really have no concept of who God really is.) Sometimes they like to bash but they are never very good - besides I stick by my principle...we do not bash, we do not bash, we do not bash. But when we do - we win. haha.
2. Most of the investigators I have had aren't very involved in any church but some are.
3. The culture helps in that the people are very willing to listen. It hurts in that they aren't married and don´t want to think that only one church is true.
4. No, we do it the old fashioned way :) (in response to Rick's question: do you use any internet contacting methods, ie Facebook)
5. Very few people show any hopelessness, they are for the most part happy people.
6. hahaha It (church) starts at least 10 minutes late every week, and ends at least 30 minute late haha.
Mom - Its certainly ok to feel overwhelmed. Neal A Maxwell said you can't expect your life to be both faith filled and stress free. That said the purpose of the gospel is to make us happy, not to make our hair fall out. I always have found what I need to hear during my study of the Book of Mormon. In fact several times I have written in the margin the date, and the phrase "exactly what I needed to hear." For example when I had dengue, couldn't understand anyone, and the culture shock was killing me 1 Nefi 3:6
Therefore go, my son, and thou shalt be favored of the Lord, because thou hast not murmured.
was exactly what I needed to hear. Or when I felt that I was doing everything I could and it wasn't enough Mosiah 4:27
And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order.
was what I needed. I can´t really answer all your questions - that's between you and the Lord. But I know He´s made the bad Spanish of a gringo touch the hearts of the people, I know he´s comforted me when I thought I couldn't do it. And I know he will bless you with everything you need to be happy and successful with what he has asked you to do.
Steph - You are ridiculous haha. Enjoy your new ride, throw some 26s on that. haha. Ty and Ry are my faves and I´m glad to hear they don´t mind me too much either.
Mikele - my little Christmas message to you was pretty weak. so I´ll try to beef it up here a bit. As for the mission prep I´m confident that you are doing a great job. I think the most important thing you can do right now is learn to recieve answers to your prayers. As a missionary you have to follow the spirit in everything you do. Before my mission I did everything I could to prepare and prayed that God would show me what else I could do. I received little revelations about things to do, but more importantly I learned how to get these little revelations. So thats my advice. Also to work on your Spanish - you can translate this: Te amo mucho y deseo que sea muy feliz. Oro para ti diariamente. Nos vemos en dos :) haha
Roy - Hope you feel better.
Don't have too much more. I´m a happy little missionary. Hopefully Mexico doesn't get too drunk tonight, but lets face it. Transfers are coming up, so next Monday I'll tell you where I´ll be. :)