Monday, January 30, 2017

I Feel Really Guided by the Lord

Hey everyone!

So last week, we got a call from the zone leaders saying there was some last minute conference with Elder Stevenson in Montevideo for all of the district and zone leaders. And they had like none of the details, so we were kind of scrambling, figuring out what we needed to do. We were trying to find someone who could go on a ´corto plazo´ with me for a few days which is kind of like a mini-mission here, but that didnt work out, and so I ended up going on divisions for a few days with Elder Baron and Elder Castro in Concepcion. I went to Concepcion and Elder Raimundo went with the zone leaders to Montevideo. I kind of put a huge whole in our plans because it was super last minute and we had a lot of lessons planned here in Colon, but oh well. Anyways it was pretty fun and I was there Monday- Wednesday. 

On Tuesday, we had a lesson in the park with a recent convert. He is incredible. He was baptized about a month and a half ago but has already read the Book of Mormon 3 times! And as we were teaching him, I could tell he wasn't kidding, because he had a really good knowledge of the scriptures. Great guy. As we were teaching him, I saw a homeless looking guy laying in the park who kept watching us. So I decided to go contact him afterwards and give him a pamphlet to read. He had a small suitcase with him and he looked really poor and lonely but it turns out he was a magician... And a really good one too. He showed us a few tricks and absolutely blew my mind right in front of us. That was super awesome, and when he started doing some of those tricks people began to be interested and wander over. When about 5-6 people had come over behind us to watch, we started testifying of our message, and it was a really neat experience. Everyone started asking us all these questions and we ended up getting a few contacts. And we gave a Book of Mormon to the magician because he was showing us his Bible, and said he loves to read!

I met back up with Elder Raimundo Wednesday and we had a zone conference where we watched a video meeting with Elder Oaks, Elder Bednar, Elder Anderson, and some other authorities. It was a great conference, and they actually made quite a few changes, including goals, planning, and the schedule. 

On Thursday, we met someone named [...]. He is a 96 year old man, and has lived in the same house for 75 years, alone for 20. He is a really neat man. It turns out he played Rugby when he was younger, so that was a cool connection to talk about. We taught him the restoration, but it was a little difficult because he just wanted to talk to us the whole time. Poor guy, I can understand. He has lived alone for so long, and probably doesn't have much to do. 

Anyways, we went back the very next morning to clean his house, because he can't see too well and it was pretty dirty. We cleaned for a few hours and then went back to the house to get changed into our missionary clothes and get ready to go to lunch. And a few minutes later Olga, the lady who lives in front of us was tapping on our window, saying there was some man in front looking for us. We came out, and to our surprise there was 96 year old [...]! Let me just say, I have NO IDEA how he knew where we live hahaha. He said that he just had a feeling where we were. Anyways, he was all worried that we accidentally threw away some medicine he had. So we told him we would be right out, because we just had to get our ties on. And, a minute later when we came out, he was already gone again. It is about a five minute walk to his house,(for us) so I don´t have any idea how this guy gets around so fast. Yeah he was already there when we arrived. We looked around, and it turned out Elder Raimundo accidentally moved a few things off the table when he was cleaning it and forgot to put them back. But yeah, that was a very interesting story. 

This weekend was pretty long and a lot of stuff fell through so we did a lot of walking and contacting, but there is nothing less that I am willing to do for the Lord. He has given me so much, and I have been very blessed. I love the scriptures so much and I know that they are true, and I know that the Plan of Salvation is real. I love my Heavenly Father, and that is why I am here, hoping to do the most good I can with the opportunities I am given! I love you and miss you all!!!

(The following is an excerpt from a second letter, referencing his grandpa Chiechi's death.)

I am glad that Mom and Grandma are taking it pretty well. When I first saw moms letter, I mostly felt bad for her and grandma because obviously they are much closer to him. But it is comforting to hear they are doing ok. Also, I can't imagine what it would be like to lose a loved one without the Plan of Happiness. I am so grateful for the gospel, and the knowledge, peace, and comfort it brings into our lives. That is really special that you got to talk with him before he passed. I hope he was at peace and comfortable. And luckily now he is so happy :)

Anyways, the BOM promise is pretty awesome isn't it? I seriously love the scriptures so much. I don't know if this is a bad thing or not but sometimes I just want to sit at my desk all day and study hahaha. But I know part of faith and repentance is action, and missionary work is how we can find the most happiness- by actually going out and doing. At times, I just want to learn and read constantly. But I am grateful because I actually feel it gives me more desires to do so and improve each day. The BOM is pretty stinkin awesome. 

It is cool because I feel really guided by the Lord here on my mission- like He is shaping me how he wants me to be. Kind of like that current bush video by Christofferson. I love that one.

Elder Layton

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