Monday, January 16, 2017

God Only Gives Us Commandments Because He Loves Us

Wow, I seriously cannot believe I have been out 6 months already! I hit 6 months on Thursday, and we were in San Jose that day. Elder Raimundo bought me ice cream at a place called Grido helado, which is my favorite! And it is actually pretty cheap compared to everything else in Uruguay and Argentina, which is pretty expensive. We also had lunch that day with the Etcheveste family, as they live in San Jose. I brought taco seasoning (thanks for sending that mom :)), and while we were teaching a retention lesson to Carlos, Hermana Etcheveste made up soooooo much stuff for tacos. They we so incredible.

Elders with Cacosso Family
We had a super great lesson this week with an investigator named [...]. We taught her the restoration two weeks ago, but have been having trouble finding her again when she is home. But we finally got another lesson with her and taught about the Book of Mormon. The Spirit was so strong, and she seemed really excited about reading it. It was pretty crazy because a couple times right when I was thinking something, Elder Raimundo said the exact same thing I was thinking. And after the lesson, he said the same thing happened to him when I was talking haha. Pretty crazy how the spirit works! 

We also had a similar lesson with someone named [...] yesterday. We taught the Book or Mormon, and left her with a chapter which she said she was going to read that night! We are also going to have a family home evening with [...] tonight in the Cacosso family{s house :) Both [...] and [...] have baptismal dates for February 11th, and I really hope we can make that goal! Also, Gabriela from my last area in Montevideo got baptized this past Saturday! I am so happy for her, and she is awesome. I think Elder Good is doing well over there in Las Acacias

Today for P-Day, we went to a cool place with the Cacosso family that has a big sign of Colon. I will send some pictures. Marcos and Vivianna (Cacosso) are so cool. They always like doing stuff with us, like family home evenings with investigators. Vivianna was just reactivated to the church a year ago and studies the gospel more than anyone I have ever seen! She is always collecting different books, videos, magazines, etc to study and she is super strong in the church. Marcos, was a convert of just a year ago and helps us visit people all the time. He is also just the coolest dude. We always sing hymns when we go over for lunch and he also plays the guitar (he is super talented). He also makes just about everything with wood in his backyard, including mostly these sweet wooden mate cups. Anyways, just the coolest family.
Sweet Wooden Cups!

I have come to see commandments not as restrictions or limitations, but counsel that helps us be more free and find more happiness. I know that God only gives us commandments because he loves us and wants to protect us. It is kind of sad that some people don't understand that and think that the Mormons can't do this or can't do that. The truth is we can, but we just choose not to. And I am so grateful to be a member of this church, because I don't even have the desires to do all of those things that Heavenly Father has told us to avoid. I trust Him. 

I feel that I really have been blessed a lot with greater desires on my mission to study and learn more about the gospel. whenever I have down time, it is like that is all I want to do haha and even though I like to take my time when I study, I'm grateful for my weaknesses because they have given me a greater desire for improvement. I am so grateful for Heavenly Father´s plan for me!

Yeah, it has been a good week. Less stormy than last week which has been nice :) But soooo hot. I seriously can't even believe the pictures of Bend that I was sent! So snowy haha. Despite the heat, I love being a missionary. I feel so blessed everyday, and I am so grateful for this great opportunity to grow myself and also help others. The Book of Mormon really is so amazing, and we are so blessed to have it in our day. I know it is true, and I know that the church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints is true! Love you all!

Elder Layton

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