Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Lehi's Dream

From, Elder Paul Freeman, dated August 20, 2008
[note: Paul's paternal grandfather died on Saturday, August 16, 2008, at the age of 94].

Dear Mom,

Your latest letter was very much appreciated. It was masterfully composed. I found it most uplifting and reassuring. I really enjoy hearing about everything that is going on.

I found out about Grandpa's death when I called President Sanchez on Monday to ask him about something unrelated. He told me he had news that Grandpa passed and that you wanted me to know. I appreciated it very much and thanked him. The thought didn't even cross my mind to grieve or feel sad, because I know the plan of salvation. That's how amazing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that Grandpa was a good man and Grandma had been waiting, and it all makes the plan that much more real. I'm eternally thankful for the power and mercy of our Heavenly Father that allows families to be sealed for time and eternity. The last time did talk to Grandpa he said he wanted to try to make it to 100 yrs old. He came pretty dang close.

I also got excited to hear about Eric and Leanne's new arrival, even though I could have been spare a few details. :) And Adam and Ariane are finally moving in. I can't wait to see it all put together.

I'm also excited to hear about your efforts with Dallas and Lynda. I hardly know anything about want went on over the past year. But, I look forward to staying in contact more when I get I'm. I still haven't settle on what school I want to go to. I'll take a little time now to look at application deadlines for BYU.

Thanks again mom. I Love you.


Elder Freeman

Monday, August 18, 2008

Touched by the Spirit

From Elder Andrushka Dated: 08.18.08

Dear Family,

Yay! I can’t wait to get to know my new family members (He just found out about Amelia being born and Eliza being imminent).

The work goes on and it got more intensified as we dedicated to work harder here and in Leon.

This week we had an amazing baptism. His name is Guillermo. I remember the first time we talked to him. It was four months ago. He didn’t want to hear about baptism, letting us know that he was baptized and he didn’t see a reason to change. He is the husband of a lovely lady that is a really strong member and has wanted to go to the temple and to be sealed as a family for awhile now. We have come to learn that when the Spirit touches someone’s heart, they get ready to be baptized. As much as we spoke as much as we could do, without the Spirit, we could not have helped him.

The baptism was lovely as lots of members were present. This ward each Sunday looks stronger and stronger.

So this week at the end of the sacrament, the first counselor asked me if I could give the Gospel Doctrine class or the Book of Mormon class. I looked at the manual and I don’t know why I said yes, but I did. I was given 5 minutes to prepare for class. As I started thinking to myself “What am I going to teach?” The Spirit came to me and let me know what the lesson was about and what I should talk about and teach. As I stood in front of all, I started to tremble, thinking how am I going to teach in Spanish? So we sang a song and started off into the lesson. I know that the Spirit was present. The class was lovely and interesting. I know that Spirit helped me a lot.

I also learned that’s why we plan on our mission. I love the work and each progression. I hope this second part of my mission will be just as great or greater. I hope that I will learn all I need to help the kingdom of God here on Earth. Love the Savior and His work. Love being a representative of Him. Hope to be a better one. Thanks for your prayers!

Noche De Hermanamiento"

From Elder Andrushka Dated: August 8th, 08

Dear Mom, Dad and the family,

This week was an awesome week, with the ward, not so much with the investigators. The ward just seems to have come more together in the last 4 months that we were here. We started to do, “Noche De Hermanamiento”. It’s a gathering for everyone to learn the gospel Friday nights. We have come to form the ward together more. My comp and I have been switching off from area to area each week. It has energized the ward more. We are ever happy to be part of the work.

The other day I was driving back in a bus from on of these activities that we were in charge of. I thought to myself, “What an experience of my life to be in Nicaragua, to be speaking Spanish and to help this group of 24 feel the spirit, sing with them, and share their difficulties.” I thought, “How did I end up here?” and was ever excited to work harder in the Gospel to help more people.

It is very true out here there are many experiences to learn from Bishops. We have come to learn how each position in the church works. How truly inspired the organization of our Savior is. I know he leads this church. I have come to see the results each small part in the church has to do.

From the smallest assignment comes out the great life saving result. I have excitement to become better, to learn more. At times I get down thinking to myself how I wish I took life more seriously when I was younger, when I had all the time in the world. Instead of dibbling the ball outside for hours wishing being in the NBA. That I would have ready my scriptures, prayed more. Then I realize, I get up and do all that I can do.

I have come to realize how awesome my companion is. He supports me. All that I can’t do, he can. We have become a great team together and I have grown so much just this change. His name is Elder Flores. We have some activities coming up that we have planned out and are so excited.

The Munoz family have not yet made the choice. There are others that are just waiting for their answers to prayer.

I too can’t believe that I almost have a year on the mission. I did get the package. As I read Dan’s talk, tears streamed down my face and I had to walk outside so everyone wouldn’t see me crying.

I have come to be stronger on my mission. At times there is a lot of pressure to stand and talk to all. Through all the pressure I have come to know more who I am. What my Father in Heaven wants me to be. Stand up and be bold to this pressure.

As with my vitamins, I am great taking some almost every day now. Thank you mom for all the work you put into sending me this. Thanks Dad also for all that you do. Hope all is well at home. Seeing the photos of all the family together just missing me was sad. Don’t you worry. I love working in the Lord’s kingdom preparing for the second coming. Inviting all to partake of the atonement of Our Savior. I LOVE YOU ALL!