Amar y Servir

Amar y Servir

Monday, April 18, 2016

I Saw Snow, I have a Brazilian Companion, Too much English

Let's start with a great quote from Elder Holland:

In moments of fear or doubt or troubling times, hold the ground you have already won, even if that ground is limited. When those moments come and issues surface, the resolution of which is not immediately forthcoming, hold fast to what you already know and stand strong until additional knowledge comes.  Jesus said, “If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”6The size of your faith or the degree of your knowledge is not the issue—it is the integrity you demonstrate toward the faith you do have and the truth you already know.

When problems come and questions arise, do not start your quest for faith by saying how much you do not have, leading as it were with your “unbelief.” Let me be clear on this point: I am not asking you to pretend to have faith you do not have. I am asking you to be true to the faith you do have. Sometimes we act as if an honest declaration of doubt is a higher manifestation of moral courage than is an honest declaration of faith. It is not!  Don’t let those questions stand in the way of faith working its miracle.

Leaving Estrella.

Leaving is always hard for me.  Partly because I subconsciously try to hide or dismiss how I feel, in order to avoid the tears and hard goodbyes.  I was visiting a few people and was able to say the best goodbyes that I could, but the last was tough.  It was saying goodbye to our recent converts that were baptized just last Sunday.  Abril, the oldest at 14yrs, was super close to crying while I was there.  It was hard to say bye to Aaron, Mauricio and Abril.  But I know that we'll all be friends for a long time.  There were so many people here that changed my life for the better and I will have a special place in my heart.  I know that it was a tremendous blessing to be able to serve amongst such a good hearted people.

My area in Flagstaff.

So coming into Flagstaff was amazing to say in the least.  I share that quote that mom gave me because it ties into how my experience was coming into the area.  The second day here we were asked to go to the local hospital to give a blessing.  We drove over before dinner and gave a blessing to a sister that was surrounded by her loving family.  All their feelings were visible in their faces.  We went and gave her a blessing of health.  The Spirit was sweet and assuring.  After the blessing was pronounced in the name of Christ, I turned to see some crying.  I realize now, looking back, that the blessing did more than heal her body and spirit.  It healed her family's spirits as well.  I am grateful to be able to relate to you all the wonderful things that occur on my mission, because some come as I am able to share with you what the Lord has given to me.

The trees and night of snow has been fun, and I have had to adjust to cooler temperatures.  But I've been enjoying it a lot.  It almost feels like I am on vacation!  Well... We do live right behind the theatre that we watched Captain America in.  Super cool right!?

A little about my companion.

He is the trainee of my trainee, in missionary slang terms: grandson. Yes it is crazy to think about it.  My companion is from Brasilia Brasil, the Capitol.  He can speak all three!! He is one of my best and favorite companions for sure!!  He has the most amazing of balance fun, hardwork, and spirituality.  He is someone that radiates the light of Christ, when putting him against a background of missionaries, that is saying something.  I feel so blessed to be serving with this dedicated elder for the last 12 weeks of my mission.

He is Humble, Meek, Christlike in so many ways, and works hard. One of the best I have been with in my entire mission. He inspires me to be better whenever I am around him.  I also learned that he really likes cats. He calls them "cuchito" and meows every time he sees one.  Haha he is such a ball!  I am going to enjoy being with this amazing Elder.

He has taken control of the area well. We have already met with the bishops in the two wards (English areas... Wow this is super different. Same church and everything... But wow are things different). We've got good relationships with the wards. Coordinations run well with both willing to help, especially Peak View.  We cover the Switzer Canyon Ward, Peak View Ward, and a Spanish group here. 

🌅 Elder Nathan Benson 🌅

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