Saturday, October 31, 2015

10/28/2015 Hurricane Patricia

Noooo!  Becca should go on the mission. She will be soooo much better off in her life. Learning how to study, learning from families what are the things that work, having a hard set of rules so that you know how really we should keep the commandments, patience, humility, how to teach, and the hundredth part of the things you learn cannot be written here. Stop having fun, Becca.

But for sister missionaries, there aren't any in our zone. Isn't that comforting, Mom?  The most of them are in bosques [forest areas], or the temple area because it's safer.

Are you distributing your work load?  I don't remember what talk it was but it talked about the 99 sheep and the one lost sheep. Have people work on the 99, doing visits, and giving reports. And you focus on the lost sheep, less actives, recent less actives, or those who could become less active, and those who have big problems.  Your counselors or other people can fix small problems.

Last week I wore a pink tie everyday. I only have three so that's why I only did it for a week, but next year I plan to do the whole month. I'll have more pink ties. 

Is it Christmas yet?  Halloween is cool and all, but it's dark and I've been knocking on doors all year long.  Christmas is happy.  The good thing is that we can talk about the plan of salvation because of Dia de los Muertos, and I hope people will be more interested.

I don't know if I have talked about how cheap food is here, but I love it. I bought a slice of cheesecake for 40 cents. (Note:  I'm making conversions.) A good sized pineapple for 1.50, 2.2 lbs of bananas: 60 cents, 2.2 lbs avocados: 80 cents!  Yeah, you're jealous. But anything that is American or a restaurant is about the same price as in the US, but less food. ._.

Hurricane Patricia: I think the worst was yesterday, but I don't know if there is more to come.  Wow! I just looked it up and it is the strongest hurricane on record for the Pacific.  I'm worried for one of our investigators because right now she is in Manzanillo, right where the hurricane hit. When I first learned of the hurricane, I was like wow, that means these clouds are part of the hurricane system.  They look more ominous now. Then there was the earthquake in India.  I was thinking Apocalypse, there will be pestilences and earthquakes in diverse places. Then yesterday started nice and sunny.  We had our day, then went to eat with a member (who is in the same house as us, luckily) and as we were finishing, I heard rain. Oh, it's raining. Dang it.  We finished and went up through the house so we didn't have to go outside.  Wait, that's raining really hard.  Oh yeah, it's not raining, its hailing! and quite big, well not that big, but about 1 cm. I look outside and there is a hurricane!  Well, not really, but it's a storm that's part of the hurricane system.

​My 40 cent cheesecake. Be jealous. But, really, don't, cause you'll break a commandment.

​Just a hurricane sunrise. (If you know what tune I sung that to, good on you.)

​Skipper, the dog of the house, killer of ties and pants.

My companion in the storm.


Today we went to templo mayor, even though it was raining.  ​

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Ponderize 10/19/2015

[Mom comment: Talking about the General Conference talk about ponderize, I really like 1 Cor 13:12, and how it fits into that whole chapter.  This week I am ponderizing 2 Nephi 5:27]  I like that one too. I read and marked that one last week. And connected it to the previous scripture where it says his people were industrious. Because that is the reason they were happy.

sorry. This week wasn't exciting enough apparently because I didn't write anything in my journal. We have been contacting a lot. (Which includes what other languages call housing and streeting.)  Literally translated when we knock on doors we say touching doors. I think it's funny. We have been contacting a lot because we don't have a lot of investigators. (Mexico is progressing very well in the church so our not having many investigators is a lot more than other missions [Sorry guys.  I wish we could all have a billion investigators, but I know you guys are doing great!])  But it's kind of disappointing here sometimes because the people are ''nice'' so they don't want to say no, so instead they give a fake address or time when they aren't home. 

​Panda tie! I wish I could show you all my ties. I have a lot now.

​I've never seen the form of a thundercloud before.  Haha. Someone else is getting rained on.


I'm getting fat. 😧💢 I looked in the mirror and smiled at myself, like I normally do because I'm so dang handsome, and saw my cheeks were a bit fatter then they were before. And I know some of you are thinking, "Good, he won't be so skinny."  "NO! I will be skinny for my whole life!"  

So, this week,  on Thursday, I decided to start a diet. But then that day we had carnitas, then ice cream, then cake, then candy. I still haven't started my diet. But I bought salad.  And it wasn't my fault we ate all those yummy things. The members gave them to us, so I couldn't refuse. 😊

And this week we baptized the family Maldonado. The Grandma had a baptismal date, like 10 years ago, but didn't get baptized because there was no water, there was no gas, and no llegó la pipa. (I don't know what the last one means) [Mom comment: possibly that "We never got around to it."  Like the pipe we were smoking went around the circle of friends, but it just never got to me." ] Three different times. But now she got baptized. even though there wasn't any gas.  Oops.  We lit the boiler, but apparently it ran out of gas quickly. When I stepped in the water, I was like, ''Oh! It's nice and warm, sister.'' Then she exclaimed, ´´Yep, it's warm!'' so her granddaughter wouldn't know until she stepped in the water. But it was all good.  The grand daughter was only shivering a little bit.

​ Notice the difference in the color of my head and feet.

Oh, and apparently people have gotten married, without telling me!  If you know anything of the sort, I would like to know. As a missionary, I know next to nothing when it comes to news, be it world, or less of the United States. Neither about the news from friends, because I'm out of the loop of Facebook.  All I know is that Donald Trump is being dumb, trying to run for president. Because they have talked about that a bit here. 

General Conference and a desire to swim 10/5/2015

​Boom! Photo for my plaque.

​Boom! Really cool sunrise. One you can only get in a smoggy city.

​I've got a guitar!
[Mom comment: Is that your companion's guitar?]
Yeah, he left it in the apartment, so I'll have it for 16 months, then leave it in my last apartment.

​Look, Mom, I do exercise!  Electrically stimulated exercise, that is.

I'm Not a Nazi 9/28/2015

So this week we met a crazy/paranoid/drug addict/apparently-knows-five-languages/anti-nazi/crazy guy. It was a slightly fun experience. We contacted a lady in the street, then as we were leaving, we saw this guy staring at us. He asked for one of the pamphlets we have and we started talking. First off this guy was talking just above a mumble. If I didn't have 7 months in the mission, I would not have understood this guy. Well I understood most of it. He told us that when he saw me with my white skin, blue eyes, and parted hair, it was like ¡HiYYY! His instincts kicked in. Because all the Nazis have their hair parted. But luckily we gave this lady a pamphlet, so he knew we weren't Nazis because we are missionaries. But what he doesn't know is that I'm both! Just kidding.  I'm not. Really. I'm not. But all Nazis have their hair parted. (He kept mentioning that.)  He, apparently, is a certified Nazi hunter. And to add to all this, he starts to talk, "You aren't [incredulos]," (Yeah, I'll need some help again with this word mom. Gracias) [mom comment: unbelievers] "are you?" Oh nice, he´s a Jehovah's Witness too. He starts talking about TJ° stuff, and then he says he´s the advocate of God. Wow, he´s Jesus? OK, yeah, I've had enough crazy for the day.  I am in airplane mode. Uhhm. Si. Si. Wait a sec. He's taking off his shoe, wat? Oh, no, he's taking of his sock too. He then procdeded to show us the blood of his sins. That will be cleaned when he is baptized*. Oh, honey, you don't need baptism for that. You need a doctor. Then he wanted to show us some sort of meeting house. Meeting place of the anti Nazis?! You thought I was a Nazi and you want to take me to an anti Nazi place? No thanks. So we gave him a fake number and told him, OK, some other time. But don't worry.  I'm not a bad missionary; we gave him a pass along card, restoration pamphlet, and a Book of Mormon.

Yeah, it was kind of funny. We are still laughing about it.

°TJ is Missionary Spanish, a mix between English and Spanish. It's Testigos de Jehová in Spanish, but we pronounce it in English TJ, cause it sounds cool, and Spanish speakers don't know what we are talking about.

*TJs have to have a certain amount of time preaching in the street before they get baptized.

We have a new investigator, who is a survivor of an attack from a serial killer. He's got stitches half way around his neck, and a bunch of stab wounds in his chest and back. It is a miracle he is alive. He was in a coma for 9 days and now he has a plastic tube for a trachea and for an esophagus. He can't really do anything right now, so it's pretty sure that he´ll be in his house for the lessons.  Hopefully this is the way he gets to find the truth and accept it.

​How´s that for a Rubik's Cube?  

​Cool thing about cities: There is cool graffiti.
Yeah, and there are more cool ones.  I just normally don't have my camera.

[mom question: Why don't you send more photos?]  It's because I live in fear of my camera being stolen. I never bring my camera anywhere. I'm jealous of other missions in which you can carry your camera everywhere, or have a better cellphone than a 25 peso phone. Or an iPad.

And normally the graffiti is in places where it is more likely to get robbed. :) 

No missionary in Mexico has an iPad. The most advanced any missionary has is a Blackberry. And this is for the secretaries.

​For all you missionaries with iPads. Be jealous. It's got a flashlight.

Blood Moon

[mom comment, asked if Ryan had seen the blood moon]  I didn't know, but when I saw it, I thought, "Oh, I should check when there is celestial activity. (I saw it but I thought it was just for the smog).  I didn't see the full eclipse but I saw it starting I think because I was thinking, "Oh, it can't be a lunar eclipse; the moon isn't full."

The full moon explains why the crazy people were more frequent.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Sept 21, 2015

Yeah, I pray a lot more. But probably not as much as I should. I pray for help, strength, energy, my investigators, my companion, that I can be a better leader\companion. In the times of the Jews, they prayed for absolutely everything: to start working, finish working, tasks in the middle, everything. If we think of that, we should pray more.  We should, minimum, pray 5 times a day: waking up, meals, and going to sleep. But then when leaving the house is good.

I have on the back of my agenda a list from the Liahona:

Para Tener Exito en la Vida

1.   Establece principios que guíen tu manera de vivir
2.   No hagas excepciones a tus normas.
3.   Sé leal.
4.   Vive de tal manera que el Señor pueda guiarte.
5.   Presta servicio a los demás.
6.   Sonríe.
7.   No te quejes
8.   Ten siempre una asignación en la iglesia.
9.   Adora en el templo
10. Sigue el ejemplo del Salvador.

A plain blue graphic with a list of 10 ways to succeed in life by Elder Richard G. Scott.

Visiting teaching is soooo important. I have learned that in the mission. If everyone had a visiting teacher, who did their visits, and effectively, no one would go inactive.

Oh, do I have a picture yet? or still I need to send one?
I have some model District leader photos but I don't know if that's appropriate.

Cause I'm a model, you know what I mean... 

[mom comment..we sold the Mustang]  Nooooooo! Don't make me sad. Everytime I see a mustang here, I get a little sad.  By the way, there is a Mustang here 2013 white GT. 108000 pesos, like 6000 dollars. I think about it but  I think it would be more hassle to get it across the border.

Woops. I didn't write anything in my journal this week. Well this week was good. We are working hard and we have ten people that could be baptized in the next month. I'm glad Elder Nava doesn't have to open an area like I have had to do, and start baptizing. 

Our main problem in this area with investigators is that they aren't married. We even have one investigator who has been listening to the missionaries for 2 years because her marido (mom can you please translate, I don't know the word in English) [mom comment: spouse] needs to be divorced, so he can marry with her. [mom comment: Becca loves phrases like this "marry with her" because it's an obvious "I speak Spanish and I'm trying to translate back to English" moment.]

You know it's sad that we have to go visit less active members. It is sad that people find the church, make the commitment, the promise, to live the gospel, and then stop going to church. For whatever reason: work, someone offended them, they made a mistake. Nothing is too big that anyone should leave the church, unless they are excommunicated. The Atonement is for our benefit, and we can use it at any time. Can we possibly think that we can sin more than God can forgive? Are we, or Satan, more powerful than God?  No. It's very sad to see when people think that. As missionaries, we don't get a lot for our work. We get a lot of sad things, people that treat us bad. But it is all worth it. Because we get to see a few people, who are good, who change their lives for good, learn of this marvelous work and a wonder. 

        "For this is my work and my glory, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man"