Thursday, September 19, 2013

16 September 2013 -- Justin continues learning life lessons

Hello Family and Friends,
How have you been? I have been doing pretty good. This week has flown by soo fast and I can’t believe I am here again before the computer writing you guys. It’s crazy all that you learn and how fast the time goes by. Today I complete 22 months in the mission and I cannot still accept that I am this old in the mission. I hope the time goes semi slower so that I can finally realize how old I am in the mission and that I can enjoy more of Mexico. Today is the National Mexican Independence Day! So today should be kind of fun, haha. A lot of parties and stuff here in Mexico, I think there is a big parade. Looks like everyone will be having fun. For us, we will be chilling in the offices.
Well this week was loaded with many events!! It was a really good week of instruction and learning. So we have been applying a lot of changes in the mission. There is a program called ''The Work of Salvation'', and it’s a program implemented even more since the world training session in June from the general authorities. It consists of many changes of the way we work and that we work more efficiently. A lot of the x missionaries would be shocked to see how we work now because it is very different. Well this past week Elder Valenzuela (Member of the 70) came to give training to the missionaries and leaders in our mission and it was a huge success. I learned a ton, and even though we weren´t doing a lot of proselyting, I was still exhausted by the intense spirit in those meetings. Well there were a bunch of changes. But I want to give you all some info on what he said before I drop into the changes. 
First of all Mexico is a powerful country in baptisms, but it is horrendous in retaining the new converts. Last year there were 40,000 converts last week and only 100 of them are completely active and progressing perfectly. When he said that, I was sooo shocked and I asked what happened to the rest???? Well the rules here for one to be baptized is to make sure that the investigator goes to church twice before he gets baptized. Well now it’s been changed to 5 times. 
Another change (or clarification) is that the stake president and the bishop control the missionary work in their areas. So we have to coordinate completely with our leaders. I´m guessing that the culture back then, and even now, is that the missionaries have their work and the bishop has his. Well the work is for everyone! If the missionary work is struggling in an area, well it’s not just the missionaries that are in need to improve, it’s the ward and the leadership. Now everyone is living the words of David O. McKay ''Every member a missionary''. So it’s been pretty cool to see the transformation and it takes pressure off of us because we don’t have to do a lot of finding and stuff. The key is that the members are finding and we teach, so that the investigators don’t just go to church because they are friends with us, but they go because they have a friend, and that we taught them until they are converted, and that they work and be like Christ. So really cool way how that is transforming. 
I have learned a lot when it comes to what I want to be after the mission. Elder Valenzuela said something really interesting to us yesterday that stuck to me. He said that these changes aren’t for us but for your kids when they serve their missions. And he explained that when we go home, we have to teach them everything that we have learned so that they can be more powerful missionaries than us and that they can be better Disciples of Christ—that they can love and serve the people a lot better. So I have the goal to be a great role model and missionary for my future kids so that they can be better missionaries than I in the future.
Office missionaries with President and Sister Morales and Elder and Sister Valenzuela

Wow seriously, I learned a ton!!!! Sorry if I am going off on a spur... My journal was super full that day.
Well something that I learned yesterday in the ward conference yesterday. It was very interesting and I want to share with you all what I learned. Well the counselor in the stake shared with us that the love of Christ and to love like him is for all of the life. And he shared a story of something that happened. There was a man who had a 7 year old house. A wall in the house got damaged so he took the sheet rock off and there was the framing of the house. The owner noticed that there was a lizard that was on the wall stuck, and he looked closer and saw that he couldn’t move due to a nail that went through his leg when the house was being constructed. For some random reason the lizard was in the way when the nail went hammered through. Well the owner was astonished that the lizard still had a body and looked closer and saw that the lizard was still living! So for 7 years, the lizard was living in the same position without movement due to his leg being nailed to the wall, underneath sheet rock and wood! It is impossible I thought and couldn’t believe it. But the man observed the lizard for a little while and what he saw was astonishing. He saw another lizard, that came with food in its mouth to give to eat to the lizard that was stuck. The lizard ate and kept holding on. Does this amaze you? It’s to say that this other lizard gave to eat for 7 years! 
The point here is that this lizard that was free stayed with his companion and gave his companion to eat for 7 years due to an attribute, love and charity. It touched my heart because Jesus Christ is the best example of this; he serves us forever and loves us forever. He serves the people and loves them endlessly. Imagine everyone had this type of love and charity in their lives, the world would be peace. I invite you, like how I was invited, to love and serve your fellow man. Start in your families with your husband or wife, brother or sister, father or mother, son or daughter. Love them and have the attitude to serve them endlessly and without expecting anything in return. Jesus Christ is the happiest man in the world and to be like him in service and charity means we will be as close to happy as he is. I promise that your lives will change for the better and you will be happier. No one is perfect like Christ, I certainly am not, but we can all give it a shot and change gradually everyday so that one day we can be just like him. 
Well as you can tell, this week was fantastic and with a lot of learning lessons. Church is great, it’s true and I love it. It’s a great place and everyone should be a part of it, and if you just believe that it’s true, you will gain a testimony soon. 
Love you all and thanks for everything that you have done for me. 
Elder Justin Powell 


Post a Comment