Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Psalms 46:10-11

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Amazing Week!! 1/23/2012

So, I think first I'll answer questions and then tell why we had such an amazing week.  

Lets see, about the weather, it's still pretty cold in the morning and at night but during the day it's good lol.  About the Alvarado family.  I'm not really sure, they won't pray and they won't come to church.  But we're going to keep with them for a little bit longer.  It's tough to teach them because every time we go over they have people over. With Geronimo, we were planning on dropping him, he didn't seem too interested in learning more but then yesterday he randomly showed up to church.  So we're going to teach him again this week and see what happens.  We're working with a few less actives but nothing too exciting.  The less actives here are more apostate than less active ha ha.  So yeah.  About Cunén boundaries, its still the biggest area in the mission because its just the branch boundaries.  Also, I was glad to hear I could scare Nicole, you were absolutely right about that it was how I would have wanted it, you did according to my will.  Also, about crazy stuff.  I really haven't seen too much crazy scary stuff.  Xela is about a million and a half times safer than the capital.  About a Guatemalan Big Mac, it's about the same ha ha.  And there's not really any weird stuff on the menu.

Now, this week was WALTER!  So many amazing things that happened.  We taught him 3 times.  In one visit, he accepted the invitation to be baptized, so that's happening!  We are hoping to put the fecha tonight though.  We did have a really cool experience with him, he told us pretty much everything any missionary wants to hear. He broke down crying about the amazing changes that he's seen and been able to make in his life.  How he was so grateful for us that he didn't have the words to express how grateful he was that we brought him this thing that has changed his life so much.  He also told us that we are two of the best friends he's ever had and he thinks that if it had been any other 2 people he probably wouldn't have accepted the message.  He said that we should know that God is using us for something and that at the very least with our missions that we can know that we changed one life and one family 

We also had an FHE with them.  He invited his friends to come, a few neighbors because he wanted to share with them the things that he had learned.  We talked about eternal families and the possibilities that we had to have one and how grateful I was to be a part of one and how we can become a part of one through the gospel of Jesus Christ.  The best part was when Walter bore his testimony to his friends and family about how grateful he was that he had the possibility to be sealed to his family one day, to be with them forever, that he knew it was possible.  Really special.  ALSO, hes been telling us for weeks that he won't be able to attend church til the29th but he randomly surprised all of us yesterday by showing up! He said he always had plans to go yesterday he just wasn't 100 percent sure he'd be able to come so he didn't tell us but he was always planning on it, LEGIT!  And tonight they're having us for dinner and they're going to make cow tail.  So that'll be fun :) I hope this letter had some more detail, I hope you enjoyed it because this was one of the best weeks of my entire life.  I love this place, I love these people and I love this work, stay strong all!  LOVE YOU!
-Elder Westenskow

"Ask in Faith"1/16/2012

To answer your question on how I'm feeling, I've been a bit under the weather this weekend but I'm improving.  We stayed in the house almost all of Saturday and yesterday so I could sleep but my fever won't break (it fluctuates between 99.3 and 102 haha) but I'm getting better and tomorrow I plan to be 100 percent :)  so that kinda ruined the weekend but we had a really good week.  We didn't teach Geronimo and nothing big happened with family Alvarado but the biggest focus was WALTER.  Upfront, we didn't put the fecha. We planned to, but it didn't feel right and sometimes you just have to trust the spirit.  But we had an excellent week with him.  We watched the Joseph Smith movie with them and every time that something about baptism would come up he'd whisper to his kids something simple like "that's how they baptize" or "see how they do it"  really, really cool.  Plus he knows who people are, it showed Brigham Young and before it even said his name he's like "that's Brigham Young"  Legit.  We also had an FHE with the family Castillo (Walter) and our Bishops family which was AWESOME!!  Bishop says he looks really positive and he thinks that he'll be an excellent addition to the ward after he's baptized. Bishop loves the guy!  Also, we taught him the Sabbath day and he told us that he's already doing the things that he needs to be able to live the sabbath day SOON.  We set the date for him to come to church the 29th and to not miss a Sunday after and he was down.  :)  He told us that he had 3 goals, 1. to be able to attend every Sunday without missing  2. Have family home evenings (he wants to have some and invite some of his friends for us to teach... we really don't know what to think anymore) and 3.... he said he forgot but that was after thinking about it for a minute and we're SURE that its baptism.  Because we've talked about it and he's said that he wants to do it and he just wants to wait until he can attend.  He really is out of control.  If he goes the 29th and the Sunday after then he can be baptized the 10th of February which is still this change which would be before Ronfeldt goes which means that the 2 of us would be the ones to baptize him :)  Also, if I baptize him and they go with the goal of being sealed in a year, I'll still be here and I can go to the sealing if they invite me... which they will haha. 

So yeah, other than that we changed houses and its MUCH better the one were in now, I included some pictures, the horrible green color was not our choice but it is funny. 

Also, on Sunday BOTH Karina and Gustavo came to church. Karina has been pilas but its been hard to get her husband there but they were both there yesterday and they had all their himnarios and gospel principles and stuff covered in contact paper so funny.   Also, the only lesson we had yesterday (I woke up, went, came back, and fell back asleep haha)  was an FHE with a family reference from someone in our ward.  The guy is like "well, we were strong in a church but then we decided to stop going so were kinda iffy on where to go, but we'll see if God touches my heart" and we watched the restoration and after he was like "well, God touched my heart but were still kinda iffy but I guess what you have to do is ask with faith what's right because if you don't ask in faith you won't get an answer " and we're like "yeah... that's exactly it haha"  it was a good lesson, and they said they'd come to church :)  I think that's it for the week.. About the whole details and pictures of Nicole coming back.  Some of both would be good, just like y'all I don't like being in the dark totally haha. 

So yeah, LOVE YOU ALL!!! Have a fantastic week.
-Elder Westenskow

Thursday, January 12, 2012

WELCOME HOME NICOLE!! 1/2 & 1/9/2012


Howdy y'all!  First off, Mom, a favor.  I need Maranda's email, she writes me dearelders de vez en cuando and I definitely need to get back to her, I just have no way lol.  From last week, the Raikes Christmas party sounds legit, they've got to be fun people if they're Corie's parents and I actually believe I've met them a couple times and they seem legit.  I'm glad y'all could go and have a good time :)  AND Clam Chowder at Grandmas.   

This week was kinda rough because of all the parties but we managed to have some good stuff.  First off, while I'm thinking about it, I really apologize for no letters, its almost impossible to send them from my zone.  I have about 4 piled up that I need to send so you'll just end up getting a bunch at once lol.  But I am keeping up on it and you will get them one day, again, sorry about that haha.  But yeah, we found a new family, the family Alvarado. They're a young couple with a baby.  They are born and raised evangelists but they seem open to the idea.  They're intelligent and really like the idea of having a prophet on the earth.  They're going to pray and ask and we have a return cita so well see what happens there. 

We're also still making progress with Walter, slow but steady.  He basically told us he wants to be baptized and we almost put the fecha but it didn't seem right for some  reason, we're going to keep going though. We just want him to assist at least once more before we baptize him so yeah, but we'll probably put the fecha this week.  Also, I don't know if I told y'all about Geronimo but he is a reference we got from the office.  He basically outlined the Book Of Mormon for us and then said they were just ideas that he had... weird dude.  But he really likes the Book of Mormon so were basing everything off that haha. 

I hit 6 months this week.... what the flip?  Have I really been gone half a year?  This time thing sucks.... I don't like it haha.  But not a whole ton happened this week but what did happen was good.  We passed the new year on the roof.  Watching fireworks for like a half hour and then trying to get some sleep haha. 

About Nicole, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! 24!  Also, have a good time receiving her, but give her some time to adjust, don't just throw worldly things at her, do it like a really cold pool haha, she'll take some time to adjust haha.  But do some fun stuff, enjoy yourselves (I'm sure you will) and tell her not to make any typical food til I get home,  I want to help and I've got some plans haha. 

-Elder Westenskow

So this computer is crap so no pictures this week.... sorry lol.  But yeah.   

SO, about the house,  how is it having Meagan and Brad around?  SEPARATE!  How is it having Nicole back?  Pretty fantastic I can imagine.  I've adjusted pretty well to the fact that she's home but it's weird haha.  I love that the cardboard me has become the new rat game, like a rat game on steroids.  And to address a subtle concern, I promise we're obedient mom haha. 

As for us, I'll start with Walter.  We had a baptism showdown this week.  We just brought it up very bluntly and talked about where he was, what he's feeling about it and all that stuff.  He told us basically that he wants to, he wants to be baptized.  But if hes going to do something he always does it right "I'm a head, not a tail"  so we talked to him and he told us that he wants to be able to be going to church every week before he'll do it.  He said in two weeks he should be there!  SO we should have a fecha soon but HE WANTS TO BE BAPTIZED!!  New Years sounds like you guys had a good time but I expect a party when I get back!! 

Dad asked if I get Cunén updates and the answer is at the Christmas conference I talked to the Elders that are there now and the family we reactivated are still going and going strong!  WE DID GOOD WORK THERE!!  I also gave him some people to look up so yay!  About our other investigators, Geronimo is going somewhat well.  He still hasn't come to church but he committed to go next week.  We're going to see him with our Bishop tonight so maybe that can help.  Also, he prayed about the Book Of Mormon and he says its TRUE!!!  So that's always a good step!. 

Alright well my computer just crashed because this Internet place is a piece of crap (kinda frustrated if you can tell so I lost some of the email but the important stuff is there. Except for we haven't had water for 9 days so we're moving to a new house tomorrow... again haha.  But we're excited to be able to wash dishes and shower lol.  LOVE YOU ALL!!
-Elder Westenskow