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

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

I'm Staying in Esperanza!! 3/26/2012

How's life in the home hut? Life here on the mission is good!  First, change news, no worries, I will be in Esperanza another change (big surprise ha ha)  But yeah, I loved the pictures from last week, good to see everyone happy and healthy :)  Also, mom, glad I have a fan, give Julia a big hello for me :)  About sunflower seeds for future reference, better in the seed, they're a good walking around snack. 

About Mom Estrada, I'm not sure what to think about them, it's tough, every cita with them fell this week and we couldn't get them to come to church.  About Gerson, we finally were able to meet with him this week and he told us that his parents had flat out prohibited him from doing anything with the church, including be baptized.  So we talked to him about how to talk to them again, how we might be able to meet with them, what we needed to do to make that happen.  I'll keep ya updated :)  Doña Tina, she also didn't come to church yesterday because one of her daughters came to visit her. But we went and saw her last night and talked about keeping the sabbath day holy and how important it was to come to church.  When we got there she was reading from the Book of Mormon so she's progressing we just need to get her to church.  So I'll keep ya updated :)  About Elder Garcia, things are good, he's kinda quiet so its hard to maintain a conversation with him and hard for him to talk to investigators or members but we're working on it :)  Training is good, just a little stressful sometimes.  About President, they're legit, I don't see them a whole ton but we had interviews on Friday and it was a good chance to just be able to sit down and talk to him :)  We spend a lot of time with the other missionaries actually, all of pday, some of Tuesday and sometimes during the week ha ha. 

This week for me was insanely fast, I can't even remember half of what happened ha ha.  But we did have one fun experience.  On Tuesday we taught two member lessons back to back in Walter's house.  We first taught Lala, a good lesson, we talked about prayer and the holy ghost and how to recognize an answer, she's really in need of basic gospel knowledge and we're helping her with that :)  She walked out and from the back came Walters brother, so we taught them about the purpose of life a little bit and a little of the plan of salvation.  It was just kinda funny, we were just on the couch, one investigator waked out, the other came in and 2 lessons in a row :) 

Sorry, this email is really short and like I said, this week was too fast to really remember.  I'll try to be better next week, I know a short email kinda stinks but just remember that I'm happy, healthy and having a blast :)  I'm excited to be in Esperanza still and we've got some good plans to teach some references this week so, I'll keep you updated :) LOVE YOU ALL!!!
-Elder Westenskow


Hey there, first HAPPY BIRTHDAY YESTERDAY DAD!!!!!!!! Hope it was fantastic!

Second, packages. I got a LEGIT package that says I LOVE YOU all over it!  It also says I KNOW YOU!  Ha ha right down to the flavor of the danishes that you sent and the soap that "smells like courage" ha ha I loved it all and it made my week :)  Glad you guys are enjoying the stuff I sent, I wanted to take advantage of someone coming home  about 2 seconds from us.  What videos are on the card that I sent? I can't remember ha ha. 

Now, about my week.  Last Monday we taught Mom Estrada!  We took a member lady and holy cow was that needed!  This lady just UNLOADED on us.  Luckily we had the member there to take most of the heat, she told us EVERY SINGLE problem that they've ever had.  Literally everything that has ever happened to them we found out about that day ha ha.  They have some problems for sure but the gospel can help.  We gave them 3 Nephi 14 to read together with the assignment to pray to know what to do.  Were seeing them again today so well see what happens :)  Also, I'm not sure if I told y'all about Lala but she's a reference from Walter, she came to stake conference yesterday and she's looking really positive :)  We're seeing what we need to do to meet her family but I'll keep y'all posted :) 

As far as cool experiences, there's a guy named Luis, we like to visit him once in a while and teach him little things that he can understand.  We taught him the nature of God that he's a person and he loves us and that Jesus Christ is a separate person.  After we taught him and verified that he understood he was like "Well a lot of people from a lot of different churches come here to pray and to teach me things but they've never taught me this before, that God is a person that loves me and listens.  They've never said things like this but right now I feel really good, I feel like this is the truth" :)  I dunno if he'll progress but it was a really cool experience :) 

More happy news, I heard from Jason last week and I'm happy to say he's doing well :)  Hope y'all have a great week LOVE YOU!
-Elder Westenskow

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

New Investigators!! 3/12/2012

How's life? Great I hope, I hope that everything is just jolly dandy on the home front! 

I have not much to answer on because everybody went and got themselves sick last week.  How's everyone feeling? A lot better I hope :) 

Let's see, we'll start with the people you know from this week.  So, the family Estrada.  The dad is a member and we've been visiting the kids and him for a bit but we really want to be able to teach the whole family, wife included.  So we've been praying a ton to be able to meet the wife and teach her.  Well, we set a cita in which they promised us that she would be there.  So we went and she said she was too busy to meet with us but that we could talk to the husband and sons.  So we taught the restoration and she was just in the next room over and so we talked pretty loud and at the end we asked her to come out so we could meet her and among other things she said how good it was that we're meeting with her family but she was born Catholic, baptized catholic and she will die catholic BUT she also referenced some things that we had said so we know she was listening.  She also let us put a cita with her for tonight so we're going to go with a lady in our ward who used to be SUPER DUPER catholic but now she's a legit member and were going to teach the Book of Mormon so I'll let y'all know how that goes :) 

Also, with Jerson, we're going to have to at the very least postpone his fecha.  He couldn't come to church or meet us this week, I think he's really stressing over the talking to his parents about baptism thing so he's avoiding the situation a little bit which stinks but we're praying for him and prayers on his behalf would be much appreciated :) 

We also found some cool news this week.  One lady named Doña Tina, she is a widow and has like 8 kids.  They used to go to church until her son died and she felt like the comfort and answers weren't there.  She's not necessarily looking for a new church but she's open to listen to us and she said she'd come to church next week :)  Also a lady named Lala (nickname) she's a friend of the Castillo family and she seems pretty positive.  She said she's always wanted to go to the Mormon church but for some reason never has.  She doesn't go to church but after we taught her how to pray she told Heavenly Father that she knows the way to get closer to him is through the things that we'll teach her :) She seems positive, we're going to see what we do to get with her family too. 

Apart from that, normal week.  I went on divisions to San Mateo which was fun because the two sets of elders there eat lunch and dinner together so I got to chill a bit with Elder Wimmer which was fun :)  Also, how was the anniversary? I'm guessing you'll tell me :)  Anyway, that's all I've got. Hope you all have a great week and don't get sick again :) LOVE YOU ALL!!!
-Elder Westenskow

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Hey There All!! 3/5/2012

HEY THERE ALL!!  Pretty good week this week!  

As far as food, we haven't eaten anything crazy this week, we've started going to the Castillo's for lunch and he's made us steak, chicken, good stuff, and more good stuff!  To answer your question about Victor, its him, his wife (they told us they were married at least ha ha) and a 7 year old kid, so yes a family. They had an emergency last week and had to go to Peten but we should be able to meet them this week.  As far as Edwin, I don't really know, they didn't come to church again but I think they had to go out of town or something because we went by on Saturday and they weren't home either.  So yeah, and I do now keep EVERYTHING in my backpack in Ziploc.  And I'm keeping eyes out for the package, hope it comes this week. 

Am I enjoying training?  Yes and no, it's good but its stressful, plus 2 hour comp study is a little rough but I'm getting used to it.  How much does the responsibility change my daily routine?  Not a whole ton except for that I'm always thinking in backup plans now and I'm a lot more goal focused, I don't know why, but completing goals is a lot more important to me.  Is it as hard as I thought, maybe not hard but different for sure.  

As for this week.  Very, very, very fast week, I thought back and thought that nothing really happened, but upon reviewing my journal I found some good stuff :)  As for Jerson, the fecha is still there but we found some difficulties.  His parents didn't know that he's been coming to church and been meeting with us. He talked to them a little bit and I guess they were a little ticked but they gave him permission to meet with us, but they have no interest in meeting with us.  However, I talked to President about it and he gave us some ideas to get in with the family. He hasn't talked to them about baptism though so well see what happens there ha ha.  With Walter, he's working his tail off. He's always inviting people to come over and he's becoming a powerful teacher, the words aren't always perfect but the spirit is. The change we've seen in him is remarkable.  I remember the first visit with him, walking in and he tells us he won't go to church with us straight up. Yesterday evening we went over and they were watching the YSA broadcast on BYUTV and he was reading the scriptures and showing them to his family.  Amazing :)  Were also mas o menos (more or less) teaching Walters brother, it's hard because he works so hard but were trying, updates to come :) 

Karina and Gustavo update, on Wednesday we went with the Bishop and the Flakes (senior missionary couple) to go visit them and they both taught powerfully. Talked about habits for life, the importance of living the gospel and taking care of the family.  Really an excellent visit :)  We also went this week for a ward activity in San Mateo.  President Bautista came and talked for a minute and then we went on divisions with members to go contact their friends and family. We ended up contacting a guy and teaching a lesson, it wasn't that positive of a contact but I went out with a future missionary and he was able to get a taste of mission life :) 

To finalize, has anyone heard anything from/about Jason? He's got a few weeks home and I'm curious how he's doing ha ha.  Also HAPPY ANNIVERSARY MOM AND DAD ON WEDNESDAY!!!!  (That calendar really works ;)) Hope y'all have a fantastic day and enjoy yourselves, all who are sick, feel better!  LOVE YOU!!
-Elder Westenskow