Friday, May 30, 2014

A Visit From Elder Johnson

Hola mi familia querida!!

I just have to say i'm glad that Grant and Caden are following in my footsteps and being super good at everything!:) That's awesome to hear how good they're getting at basketball and at band and at everything! Also i can't believe the next time i write you guys Grant will no longer be in middle school and Kendall will have finished high school?!?! Aye aye aye, the things that happen when one goes to Mexico...

Haha well this has been an awesome week! Apart from the stomach problems that came up today after the food... it's been a really uplifting week. We had our conference this week with Elder Johnson, who is the Area President here in Mexico for those of you who don't know. He got here on Tuesday night and has been going to all the different areas in the mission. The conference for us here in Saltillo was on Wednesday and it was good! It wasn't anything we hadn't heard before, it was just the way that missionaries and members can work together more efficiently. And his emphasis was that the ONLY duty, or at least the most important one, that we have as members of Christ's true church is to save ALL of God's children. But it was a good conference all in all. Elder Johnson is very very straight forward with us but he's a really good and powerful speaker! It was CRAZY trying to organize everything, because me and Elder Lopez got the biggest load here in the offices in organizing all of the buses, making all the hotel reservations, and making sure all the members knew about it and we had to make invitations and talk to stake presidents and bishops and oh man it was just a lot of work. Kinda stressful but it's okay, because it's almost over. But tomorrow we have another conference with him for all the leaders in the mission. So we'll see how that goes , but we're really excited. Then we have the final conference with him tomorrow night with all the members in the 3 stakes here in saltillo and all the missionaries. I have gotten (and have been asked) to play piano in all of the conferences here in Saltillo, which is cool! 

So as far as the people we have in teaching, last Sunday was kind of a bummer because we had 9 people committed to come to church, and then a lot of crazy things happened in the morning and NONE of them were able to make it. Which was a big bummer! But this week we should have 6 or 7 investigators in the church, so we're really excited! We have a TON of people in teaching right now, it's just been really hard to find time to get with them for all of the things we've had to do for the Elder Johnson visit. But we have 3 really cool families that we have right now that we're really excited about. The De La Cruz family has already been to church twice and we are planning to make a baptismal date with them tomorrow, and then the familia MuƱoz Rodriguez is a family we just barely met this week. The mom just barely had operation to remove a 15 cm cancerous tumor, we contacted her daughter in the bus a few weeks ago and she asked us to visit them because they are going through a really tough time but they are really really cool and they said they are coming to church this Sunday as well! So the work is moving along:)

I listened to a talk by Elder Bednar this week a lot of times, and there were some parts in there that really hit me hard. It's called ´´That we might not shrink'', and it talks about facing trials with not only faith in Christ but also having the complete submission to His will. It talks about a young couple, and how the husband gets cancer just a few weeks after their temple sealing, but there's a part when the cancer comes back after already being put into remission once a few years earlier, and he starts to feel alone, frustrated, hopeless, and as if Christ wasn't aware of his problem. And he relates the story of Christ in the bible when he is with his apostles in the boat, and the storm comes and the apostles begin to become scared and worried, and  they go up to the savior and ask him ''... carest thou not that we perish?'' And Christ gets up and calms the water. And in sharing this Bednar talks about the importance of first believing that Christ CAN or is able to ''calm the waters'', or heal us, or fix our problems, and then the 2nd part, which might be even more important, is having the faith necessary to submit yourself completely to HIS will, not our will. And if we can have those 2 thoughts coexist in our lives, we will be able to have more peace in our lives and we will be able to recognize the miracles that Christ provides us in our times of trials. 

Well i love you guys and i hope you have a GREATTTTTTTT last week of school! I miss you tons and pray for you guys every night! 

con mucho amor,
Elder Bird

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Long Time Since Last Letter

Hey guys!!!!

Well this week has been kind of depressing actually. Haha, on Wednesday morning we went to the airport with President to say good bye to Elder Udall and Elder McCoy (the materials secretary before me). And it just honestly kinda put me in a funk for a few days! It was weird seeing 2 of my bestfriends in the mission get on the plane to go home. But i guess that's the mission life. But it was cool being here to say goodbye to them at the same time. But it was just a really weird feeling. 

We also had a super cool district activity today, we came here to the church in the morning and played basketball and volleyball and then went bowling afterwards. It was so much fun! It's been WAY too long since i've played basketball, but don't worry! I shaked off the rust, so Grant and Caden you gotta get ready for 21 when i get home:) but that was really fun, The president had cancelled all activities for the last 2 transfers because they did house checks and all the houses were super dirty. So it was our punishment and he just barely let us do them again. So thank goodness for that because Pdays are SOOO boring when you can't do activities. It's still prohibited to play soccer which kinda stinks, but we'll see if he changes that rule too. But it has been a good Pday to say the least.

This week has been awesome because the really cool family i've been telling you guys about went to church last week and LOVED it. The hermana is really excited again and is even going to the temple with the ward tomorrow just to sit outside. But it was really cool. The kid, Ruben already wants to get baptized and just loved every second of church. So they are going again this Sunday and if everything goes well in 3 weeks they will get baptized! Lalo, the 13 year old who we were planning on baptizing this Sunday has kinda stopped progressing, which is pretty sad. He's just got a really really stubborn mom who doesn't really let him progress. She never lets him leave the house and she is ALWAYS yelling at him. Which has started to really frustrate us, we just don't really know how to tell it to her. It just seems like no matter how  much we talk about the importance of family and keeping the spirit in the home, it just goes in one ear and out the other. But we have an appointment with them tomorrow so we'll see what happens. We also found another family yesterday. The hermana was a reference from another ward here in the area, and her husband has had health problems for the past 6 months and she is just super super depressed. We taught them the restauraciĆ³n yesterday and they really liked it. They have a 12 year old daughter who's super cool too and also seemed really interested in what we had to say. So they said they would come to church this Sunday as well, so keep your fingers crossed!!

Something that i've been able to feel strong this week is the power that prayer has. We teach the importance of having communication with God all the time to our investigators but i feel like sometimes it's something i forget. This week i have really focused on saying more meaningful prayers and trying to build my relationship with God and i have been able to feel his presence even more strongly. In the district meeting I gave on Tuesday i talked about the importance of prayer, and we watched the segment of God's army where he receives his testimony through prayer, and then i made the invitation to everyone (including myself) to do the same, to look for that conviction that these things are true again and to be able to feel the spirit again confirm that God lives. And most of my district has told me of amazing experiences they have had this week through saying more meaningful and personal prayers. So it's something so simple that i feel like we forget a lot, so focus on your prayers this week!!

Well i love you guys and i know life is crazy right now with school and seminary ending, by the way i CAN NOT believe that Kendall is graduating in 2 weeks!!!! Haha but anywho, love you guys. have a great week!!!:)

Elder Bird 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Another Awesome Week

Well guys so guess what... I get to see your beautiful faces and talk to you guys in 2 days!!!! I'm so stinkin excited!! But you guys gotta let me know what hour would be best for you guys. 

Well this week has been pretty awesome! We found an hermana who is the niece of the hermana that i lived with in monclova (small world huh?) and she hasn't been to church in over 20 years and her husband and 2 kids aren't members and they're SUPER cool!!! We've had some really awesome lessons with them this week and the kids are super awesome too. So they should be going to church this Sunday. We also continue working with the family A L, but they've been a little frustrating, the won't really support Lalo in going to the church, so the last 4 weeks he has gone alone with us to the church, but he already wants to get baptized and he told me last week during church that he wanted to be an elder, and he asked me how he could become one. Cool huh? But yeah so we are hoping to have a baptismal service for him in 2 or 3 weeks along with another girl named Brelinda who has 9 years old that hasn't gotten baptized due to family problems, but now she says she is ready so we have been working with her family a lot this past week to try to bring the spirit back to a broken home, and we have had some really cool lessons with them. I feel like some of the coolest lessons i've had in the mission have been with members who haven't gone in a long time and haven't felt the spirit for a long time because the spirit in those lessons is so much stronger and they are able to remember the things they once believed in and the faith they once had. 

We also had the mission leader conference yesterday so i got to see a bunch of friends which is always fun. And 2 of my best friends in the mission are going home in 2 weeks! Which is super weird... one of them is the old materials secretary so now if i forget how to do something i gotta figure it out on my own haha. 

Well sorry this letter is so short but i can tell you guys all about my life on Sunday! But you guys gotta let me know when you can talk! Love you guys and can't wait to talk:)

Sorry this is the only picture i got this week!