It was a crazy week with cambios obviously. Some really nice members in LA did a little FHE goodbye for me and Hna Salles who was also leaving the ward. It was fun and it's always hard to say goodbye here. They were really nice and I had mentioned a long time ago that I wanted to learn French or something so they gave me a scripture set in French. Really nice. After that it was pure packing but I have a lot of practice now so I got it done in like an hour and this time didn't forget anything!
Tuesday was the transfers. The ride between LA and Temuco has always been really pretty and you can see pretty much all the volcanoes in our mission in one trip which is cool. Hna Salles was also going south so we took the bus together. It stopped in Victoria and I got to say hi to Elder Aravena again and that was fun. Getting to Temuco has brought back a lot of really faint memories of coming here from Cunco etc. I actually worked here in my current sector one day when me and Elder Cederstrom were headed north to pick up our trainees in the office. The only difference now is that it is just so so so cold. I wear like 10 layers every day hahaha. Here the cold is different because it's really wet. Apparently this week was colder than usual and it will get a little warmer (but rainier) this week. Honestly I prefer the cold over the rain. The good news is that we live in a really nice apartment with the zone leaders that is waaay warmer than my last house in LA so that's awesome. Elder Camp and Huerta are long time beginning of the mission friends too so it's been cool to live and work with them.
Elder Ritter is really awesome. He's from Virginia like I said and is a great missionary. We have a lot in common which is fun. He knows the sector really well and the ward too so thats really great. We've gotten along great and have had a ton of fun together working. Caupulican is a totally different sector from anything I've ever had before which is a fun change. It's really only the downtown of Temuco which is really big and busy so it's pretty exciting usually. Not a lot of doors to knock and I'm honestly fine with that. Lots of universities which is funny. Tons of restaurants and apartment buildings and tons and tons of people and traffic. It's been a really cool change from the normal tranquilo of the rest of my mission. Lots of people to talk to. I love it here!
The ward is pretty small (like 60) but everyone who is there is really active and works really hard in their callings etc so that is awesome. Bishop Jara is great.
Tuesday we got to the house and did a little unpacking and got to know each other and after lunch we were on the street which was fun. That night we had a total miracle because one of the counselors in the stake presidency had invited this really cool family of immigrants from Venezuela and we had a really good FHE. They had never heard much about the church and had become kind of disillusioned with the catholic church and were really receptive to the lesson we gave them about eternal families and restored truths. They are really nice and seem pretty interested. That was totally awesome. It was a good week to show up to the sector.
Wednesday was good too. Finished unpacking which was nice. More getting to know the sector and getting around. We had a really good lesson with a 26 year old student in the chapel who had contacted the missionaries a few weeks ago and gone to church. Her name is M. and shes studying social work and after seeing some kind of ugly stuff in her practice she says she is looking to see if God is there and if she can reach out to them. We talked about prayer and the spirit and invited her to ask God if He really is there. Also seems really receptive so that's awesome. It's always fun to teach students because they are more used to learning and pick everything up really fast and are always looking for fulfillment in life etc. Reminds me a lot of N. from Lagunillas. That night I had a baptismal interview for P. an investigator of the sister trainers here. He was awesome and passed no problem. That pretty much was our whole day.
Thursday was our first district meeting! We started out with a leadership meeting and it was really weird and fun to not be in charge hahahaha! My district is really big. Im in charge of 5 other companionships, including the APs of the south side of the mission which is Elder Willey a long time friend. I gave a lesson on personal conversion and how to find true motivation in the mission and I think they liked it. I was pretty happy with how and turned out and it was fun to try and pass on what Ive learned to younger missionaries. My district has some really good missionaries in it so its going to be really fun. I had a good time serving and talking to them this week.
That day I went to Vilcun, a tiny little town in the middle of nowhere on the way to the cordillera. Its really small and pretty much just farmers haha. I worked with elder Araya from Santiago. Hes really cool and a recent convert from like 4 years ago. A really caring and dedicated guy. We had a good time working there and actually taught a lot of lessons. They have a lot of investigators which is cool. Vilcun isnt even a branch yet, its only an extention of another ward here in temuco. They have like 10 people who congregate in a little house there. Its a big challenge to be there but the missionaries there have a really good attitude about it. I remember feeling so alone in cunco but they seem pretty happy. The next morning it was so cold a tiny little bit of snow was falling. I got sick that day though. Im still getting over a cold I caught. Everyone tells me here that its from leaving a warm house and going into the cold right away but Im not sure about the medical validity of that idea. Whatever. Im finally getting better now though.
Friday was kind of busy as well because first we had a scheduled baptismal interview for the other hnas in my district but when we got there it fell through until saturday morning so that took up a little time but it happens sometimes. This week happened to be our ward conference which was awesome. We had a ward talent show that night which was really fun. A lot of less active members came which was cool. They asked us to do something so we played a song on guitar and sang but we were first and it looks like they kind of used us for the sound balancing hahaha so it was hard to here us. Plus from my cold I was already kind of losing my voice and after that it was totally gone. After that it was too late so we had to go home early.
Saturday we did the actual interview and Sebastian who is 9 passed. His family was reactivated by the sister missionaries. Him and Pablo got baptized that day but we couldnt go because the stake had also organized a big Open Doors activity in our chapel which is right down town so me and elder Ritter were in charge of making that happen in coordination with the bishop and like halft the zone. It pretty much took up the whole day and was fun but i think because of the cold there werent that many people in the street and not that many people came in but enough did. We mostly got references for other sectors here in temuco but it was still a success. We were pretty exhausted that night after that.
Sunday was ward conference so everyone in the ward was really on point. The venezuelan couple came and it seems liked they really liked it but when we tried to set another appointment they said they were going to be kind of busy this week (nooo) but i think we will get in contact with them later this week.
Wow. I think this transfer was really inspired. Any feelings of tiredness or boredom I had in LA are pretty much gone now. A lot of that has to do with elder Ritter. Im so greatful to be here and I think Ill be able to finish better than ever. This week flew by and it was scary. Its mostly good to be busy. I was so happy this week. Sometimes being a missionary is just bliss.
This life is a privelege. Mortality is a joy. I think on my mission The Lord has really taught me that whosoever loses his life really does find it. Ive been really stuck on Heleman 3:35 this week. I love the imagery of the last phrase that in spanish is "entregar nuestro corazon a Dios", or "turn over our heart to God". I think there is a lot of symbolism in that image and that it can mean a lot of different things. THe heart can represent our will or our desires. I think it has to do with what dad read in that one little book about sacrificing our "stories" or our plans for our own lives for what God wants. Thats pretty much a mission in few words. Im just really greatful for what God has done with me.
Ok doing great here and I love you all! I hope youre all well!
Elder Trevor Smith
Ok hello all!
First up is the blessed transfer news: I'm off to Temuco! I'll be in a ward called Caupulican which is well known in this mission for being the most downtown ward there is. It's like literally right in the middle of Temuco and supposedly is kind of tough because there are few houses and a lot of un-enterable apartments but it will be a fun change and challenge. I do worry I may have gone out of the fryingpan and into the fire a little bit as far as sectors go buuuut it's only 6 weeks so Ill make it. The first transfer in any sector always goes really fast so it will be fun. Lots of university students supposedly. My comp will be Elder Ritter from Virginia who I don't really know but he is always directing the music in various mission activities so I think he will be a good singer and we will be able to do some fun music stuff. I always wanted a really musical comp. I think he has a little less than a year in the mission which is cool. I hear he is really nice and funny.
I'll be a district leader too which will be a really fun change and I will be able to really pass all of my learning on to a lot of missionaries before the sword of justice descends upon me as in the words of Alma the younger. I was only a district leader 5 weeks and a year ago so it will be cool to get another shot at that. Honestly now with a lot of changes in the mission they pretty much do more than the ZLs and have a lot more one on one contact with the missionaries so that will be cool. I won't be completely in charge of or responsable for things for the first time in a year! Honestly though I really loved my time as a ZL and learned so much from it. I really did love to serve in that way and loved all the missionaries I got to meet that way. I'm just glad everything in the mission gets done in exact accordance with God's will.
I think we will be living with the ZLs there who are Elders Huerta and Camp who are good friends of mine so that will be really cool. I'm really stoked and really greatful for this! It will be very cold there though. Temuco is cool though.
This week went by really really fast. We started out pretty normal with a good day Tuesday in our sector and some good last meetings too. Wednesday I worked with Elder Lighthall in Las Americas. Hes the one from Irvine It was really fun and we got a lot done. They are always really busy there with lessons and stuff so its really fun to work there. It has kind of a Boca Sur flavor as well which gives me good memories. Elder Lighthall is awesome and has grown a lot. One notable thing that happened is that the hnas from that sector called us to go and quickly give a blessing to an investigator's really disabled son who went suddenly into convulsions during their lesson. It was raining and dark and we ran over there just as the ambulance was getting there and the paramedics were doing their job so we didn't get to give him the blessing there but I'm pretty sure the hnas sent the missionaries close to the hospital over to the ER or something like that. The whole thing was kind of weird to just be witnessing. It was all so sad and I couldn't help but think about how so much hardship and tragedy without the refining power of the gospel in our lives really disolves into thin air compared to suffering with the perspective and peace the Gospel gives. It's hard to explain I guess. I think that without the gospel all of that sadness just seems pointless and cruel.
The night ended well with our English class and delivery tacos which were delicious. Elder Lighthall's a great friend by now.
Thursday was another intercambio with Mulchen because their district leader didn't have the time to do one with them in these last three weeks or something. I went to Mulchen with Elder Duke who's in his 3rd transfer. Best thing ever is that they are one of the few houses of Elders that has a real oven and the real miracle is that the night before they had baked real chocolate chip cookies wow. So delicious. It was so so so cold that day there though. It gets dark really quick here now too. Elder Duke is really cool. He doesn't have the best Spanish but he really shows a lot of really good other abilities like planning and obedience so it was cool to see how well he was trained by Elder Howes in our zone. Mulchen is really beautiful too because it's in between two different rivers.
Friday we had a zone attack in Las Americas so we all participated in that together as a zone. I was with Elder Cullotta who had to do a baptismal interview for an invetigator there so we spent the majority of the time doing that. It is always cool to see the zone get together and work together. Elder Culotta is one of my best friends here by now too.
Saturday was good but I was getting pretty anxious about the transfer news due that night, it being my last transfer etc. It wasn't dissapointing though I'm stoked about that.
Sunday I had to give a talk again. The ward had literally just gotten home from a big temple trip so I took the opportunity to talk on eternal families and I think it went well. It was cool to see a lot of members and especially some recent converts come back. I also mentioned my transfer which surprised everyone because they thought I was going to finish in their ward hahaha. It's always kind of sad to say goodbye. Thats one thing I'm super tired of about the mission. Chileans are just hard to say goodbye to. I.\'m not sure why. Especially this ward.
Shoot not sure what else to say. Im really grateful for this transfer mostly. I'm excited for a fresh start and new faces and turf and I think it will really get and keep me excited and working hard.
As far as spiritual thoughts go for this week I'm not sure. There have been a lot. I think sometimes I get kind of overwhelmed by the eternity of God's plan for me. Maybe it happens to you too? I think about how He knows me and His plans for my future and the many things He has blessed me with in the past and it just gets overwhelming. People keep asking how I feel about going into my last transfer and I think in the past I would have had a lot of conflicting answers but now all I can think of saying is "greatful". For all of it honestly. The good and the bad of my mission. For what I've learned and especially for how I've changed for the better. Sometimes I feel like the mission is a great analogy for a lifetime, and I think that if I could live my life like I lived my mission and grow old with the same feeling of peace and gratitude and fulfillment I have now, that would be just perfect.
A scripture keeps coming to mind. I think it might be revelation. I keep thinking about the parable of the talents and when the landowner says to the faithful servants that they have been faithful over little and that he will put them over much (sorry I can only think of it in spanish not sure how it goes in English...). What a comforting principle for the eternities of our existence. It was always my goal to be able to finish my mission and be able to say I gave it all and even though Im not done yet I feel like I'm on track to really be able to say that with integrity before God. I think my understanding of that type of consecration has really improved too, in the the context of a better understanding of God's mercy. I think if there is one lesson I learned this transfer its that God really is merciful.
Not sure if this letter has made anything of sense sorry. I really love you guys all a lot and your letters too. Macy looks beautiful dancing too. I hope you're all doing great! I'm doing awesome here!
Elder Trevor Smith
Ok another kind of uneventful week -- sorry! I'll try my best! Obviously the highlight was talking to all you guys. Wedding stuff looks really fun. I'm sure it went great.
The week started out with the same ol same ol but this time the APs came down from Conce for the district meetings and to do divisions with us that day. Elder Quintero and Elder Haymore are friends from my very first transfers in the mission so we know each other really well and it was fun. They have a car and we have a driveway in our house but the Elders before us had lost the key to the padlock to the gate of the driveway so we had to spend like 40 minutes breaking it off to be able to lock up the car while we were working that day so that was a hassle but kind of fun to pretend like we were robbers jk. Elder Quintero worked with Elder Gordillo and was previously in San Martin so he was able to help us meet some people he new and we found a cool part member family that way. Elder Haymore is pure amor so it's always really cool to work with him and learn from him. It was productive. We had a good time talking about our early missions etc and a lot of missionary friends who have gone home now.
Wednesday I'm kind of struggling to remember but I think we found another part member family that supposedly the mom was really unreceptive and cold but when we went over she was super nice and receptive. She had a lot of Catholic images on the walls but we are going step by step and I think she already knows she needs to change. Ingles class was fun that night and we had a good group of students that time. Oh yeah we ate a lunch that was just totally over the top. The member who had us over works in sea food importing and exporting between here and the states so he and his family had cooked like 20 pounds of swordfish and kept making us eat more and more but it was so delicious. I think I probably ate like 5 pounds of swordfish. This ward is awesome. Another lunch highlight of this week was one member's birthday so she cooked us bistec al pobre with rice and sausages and french fries and pork. What. Then at the end it was ice cream sundaes with oreo. My heart will never recover but it was so good....
Thursday was fun because I went to Nacimiento with Elder Burrows who I really love being with at this point. He has grown and learned so much in just two combos it's crazy. He has a really good heart and that counts for a lot. Nacimiento is pretty cool because it's a full on ward even though it's a smallish pueblo so we took the opportunity to do a little cleaning of the ward lists and found some cool less active and part member families. Elder Burrows is a really smart guy so we had some fun conversations about Spanish and music etc. It was really cold that night though. Funnily enough like 3 months ago his family had asked him what he missed from the states to be able to send it in his birthday package. At that time it was still boilingly hot so he said he missed 7/11 slushies. They actually found some freezer official Icee deals to send and have him freeze here so even though it was really cold we went ahead and ate one each anyway which was funny but totally worth it and sooo delicious.
Friday was pretty boring as well honestly. We did a lot of walking and looking for former investigators from the area book with a little luck. For whatever reason English class that night was pretty empty. Fridays are usually a little rougher in that sense.
Saturday was fun because we talked! I mostly couldn't get that out of my head honestly before or after. It also rained super hard from Thursday until Sunday morning so that was crazy. We taught one of my favorite less active families who is coming back and had some serious breakthroughs with them and they came to all three hours of church on Sunday and said they actually really like it.
Sunday was awesome. The sun came out and it was a beautiful day. Our church meetings were so good this time. This ward knows what it's doing as far as that goes. Every hour was killer. We left feeling really good. We ate lunch with the Bishop Troncoso who I love and then got over to some members' house so Elder Gordillo could skype his family. We had some seriuos technical difficulty so it took a while to get started but we finally got it done and he liked it a lot I think. After that we were supposed to have a FHE with an active family and their less active invites but the invites didn't show up. We still had a good time. Actually it was with Christian Carrasco who was my gospel principles teacher in Villa Ohiggins back when he was single and now he is the Elders Quorom president here and married to a super cool Argentinian member who served in the same mission as him. They are both really humble and spiritual and mostly really really funny so we had a great time.
Today was another highlight. I don't think I've mentioned brother Angel Cruz here but he is a convert from like 10 years ago who is now the high priest group leader of the ward and is just totally awesome. He and his wife had recently finished a 3 year part time service mission in Santa Barbara (chile). They both have been in charge of the ward temple trip this weekend in which like 65 members are going with like 7 recent converts. Supposedly they have like 250 names to do work for which comes out to a total of like 750 ordinances or something crazy like that. It's crazy how big a difference one person who magnifies their calling can make. Anyway today he and his wife took us and the Hnas from our ward and the one over to Alto Bio Bio, or a few towns east of LA in the cordillera and it was totally beautiful and one of the coolest field trips I've had in the mission. It was so fun. Nature for us is the closest thing we get to a temple trip in two years here. I really do leave visits to nature feeling renovated spiritually.
One fun thing was a museum way up ther about the native tribe here the Pehuenches. Really cool actually. Lots of crazy connections between their culture and religion and legends to gospel stuff like the BoM and Bible etc. A Noah's flood story and pretty much an exact quote to Zenos saying we need to pray over our flocks and fields and friends and enemies etc. The craziest thing was that they had a big list of traditional last names of the tribe and one of them was "Levi". Yep. Straight up Levi. How crazy is that.
In sacrament meeting a bunch of thoughts and scriptures came to my mind about the last two months here. I haven't had time to organize them all but it was mostly all about why the Lord gives us weakness and challenges. Some scriptures I'll put here and you all can look for the connections with me. Heleman 3:5 Ether 12:27 Moroni 7:48 2 Nephi 2:25 and a few more I can't remember right now. I think it's important to analyze the challenges we overcome to be sure that we have learned the lesson God wants us to have learned. Just a quick spiritual introspection after weve conquered some big trial to see what God has taught us; what He has made of us. It also helps us to see the "end" that justifies the sometimes painfull "means" of the events of our lives. At least for me it's provided some good perspective and even gratitude for trials I've had recently. This existence is full of a lot of "means" and "ends" in our lives.
Ok I loved talking to you all! I love you all and hope youre doing great!
Elder Trevor Smith
Wow this week went really fast and slow at the same time! Sometimes I feel like time on the mission gets really weirdly disthorted, especially now towards the end. I'm struggling to remember stuff but here we go.
We started the week with a district meeting that was really good. We talked about member work and it was good. We left right away and wrote home as you know. I think that day we had correlation with our new WML and it was pretty good but we still have a way to go.
Wednesday we went to Conce for the Leadership council which was pretty cool. I don't know if I'm just a bad listener but it's starting to seem like the same thing every time to me now hahaha it was still really spiritual and good. Our zone was the only that completed its baptism goal in April so they gave us a tupperware of homemade cookies for the zone and sang a song for us which was fun. We got a lot of praise from everyone because we were also the highest baptizing zone but I honestly feel like I've tried less hard and been less good at my assignment then in the past so it was weird that we had more success hahaah. I guess it goes to show that it's all up to every individual companionship really. The cookies were good anyway. The coolest talk was about planning lessons that Elder Willey and his comp (the aps) gave. It was actually kind of cool because I had given a training on that to consejo like 9 months ago and Elder Willey remembered and gave me a shoutout for the idea which was really nice. I got to see a lot of old friends like Elde Molina and Aravena etc and we took a nap on the bus ride home and then taught an English class that night.
Thursday we did a gran intercambio and I worked in Villa Esmeralda which is a ton like VIlla OHiggins my first sector. I worked with Elder Figallo who is from Peru and really a killer missionary for how much time he has here. We got to teach two lessons which was fun. My cold from the week before kind of came back with a vengance from then on which was a bummer but I could work every day. It was a good time amd fun to get to know a zone memeber better.
Friday we had interviews with pres and a little practice time with the zone too which was fun. The zone is really awesome and participates a ton and it makes things really edifying and spiritual. That day we had a super miracle with a family that we had been working with who are members. They invited us to a FHE with a part member family and it went really well. The kids were SO crazy though it was ridiculous. I think we got a good message in though.
Saturday was a really boring day but the good thing was a couple lessons we had, one with a young unmarried couple but their wedding date is coming up so we are getting them re-amped about baptism. They are really great and it's fun to teach them and help them have the vision for the temple.
Sunday was good but pretty average. We taught a recent convert's mom and showed the restoration movie. I love it so much! I remember seeing it as a kid and I really feel like that's where my testimony of the restoration started. It had a really good effect and she really likes the idea of it all and committed herself to read and pray to ask if it's all true. Teaching is really a joy for me. It's the highlight of our week when we get to do it.
Wow this is a boring letter I'm so sorry! It was pretty rainy and it's getting colder here. Fall is kind of ending it seems like. Today we played volleyball with the zone and it was way fun. Our zone is awesome now. Everyone is so positive and so dedicated.
I think a spiritual high for me this week was about the restoration. By coincidence towards the front end of the week I read a lot of prophesies about the last days and the work of the restoration and the gathering of the house of Israel etc, and then towards the end of the week got to teach a lot about how it all got started with Joseph's prayer etc. We are so priveleged to have this knowledge. I thought a lot this week about how precious and valuable a testimony is. It really is important to cherish them and nurture them every day. It's a privelege to be a testator of these things, and I know that won't end when my mission does.
Ok I'm trying hard to really involve myself in the work this week! This week should be a good one! I really love your letters and sorry that mine is mas o menos this week! I'm so stoked to talk on Saturday! Good luck Taylor and Brynna with all the wedding stuff! Sorry I'm not there! I love you all so much!
Elder Trevor Smith
This week feels long I think becasue yesterday we couldn't write because it was a holiday here like labor day or something. Sorry if you got worried. Trying to remember everything from last week...
For some emergency reasons I had to give the district meeting class for one of the DLs on Tuesday and had really little time to prepare but it actually turned out really well and I think I was able to tune in with the needs of the district well enough and to give them some of my perspective with the time I have here (more than double the majority of the district members). We talked about challenges in the mission and sacrifice etc. The fourth verse of "praise to the man" is really cool in Spanish but I'm not sure if it's the same in English or no. It says something like "blessings are given for sacrifices" and thinking about that truth in the context of the early church was fun to talk about with the missionaries. After the meetings we did a kind of charades competition or catchphrase-like game where the companionships had to communicate to each other a word without saying it to practice companionship communication etc. They liked it and it was a good object lesson.
We had ward conference which was cool! Lots of fun activities and a lot of less active and non member invites which was cool. Wednesday we had a FHE as the ward and the Relief Society had put together a kind of crazy theatre interpretation of Samuel the Lamanite and the coming of Christ in 3rd Nephi and it was pretty loco and not ready so they recruited us and the hnas from the ward to fill in as extras last minute and it was something way out of our comfort zone but we did it to demonstrate that if they ask us to do something (anything) we will do it hahahaha. The really cool thing was our real part before the play (improv). Us and the hnas were in charge of the spiritual thought at the beginning so with the help of a hno we hatched a great scheme. We dressed up one of the elders from the ward nextdoor like a hobo and had him kind of meandering outside of the chapel while people went in. They really believed it! As we sang the opening hymn he came in and kind of shyly sat in the back and everyone looked so uncomfortable from the ward hahahah! The hnas started sharing their scriptural thought while meanwhile (totally unscripted) a really nice member with a huge heart went up and sat next to the disguised elder and talked to him and offered him a lot of help and even to stay in his house the night, totally believing he was really a homeless guy! It was so sweet and so amazing! The hnas at the end of their scriptural thought about charity called the disguised elder up and we took off his disguise to reveal his white shirt and plack on underneath and pretty much the whole congregation started to weep. It was really really special. One member even told us he was going to through the fake hobo out and that he felt so repentant after! Pretty fun stuff
Thursday we had a multi zone conference with Pres May and the APs which was cool. There was a lot of really cool instruction from the world mission department about focusing on finding and teaching youth from age 15-25 that was really cool. I hope we can apply it here.
Thursday we did an intercambio and I worked w Elder Burrows again which was fun. Elder Gordillo went to Nacimiento to do a baptismal interview.
Friday we had a really fun activity in the ward that was a silly hat competition. The hnos really went to town and there was a lot of really awesome participation. Really funny stuff.
Saturday was another intercambio with Elder Lighthall from Irvine California! It's crazy how that when I work with people from California I really feel like I'm with a friend from a long time ago or something it's so werid. We got to talk a lot about his mission up until now and he has grown a lot and has a lot of desires to grow and improve which is so cool to see. It's awesome to see how much the mission has improved since I got here. I dont know if it's just an issue of a changed perspective or what but it's given me a lot of hope for the future.
That same day I woke up kind of with a cold from Elder Gordillo which was a bummer but I'm pretty much better now. I think it was from the zone conference actually. Everyone gets sick after those things. We did a zone service project which was fun. We picked up trash in one neighborhood and it was a good chance to work together.
Sunday was good but I was pretty sick. I got home from lunch and was pretty tired so E Gordillo made me take a nap. It was werid because I think after 21 months I've gotten so conditioned to be so conscious of our time usage as missoinaries. To be honest when iI layed down to rest I was kind of expecting that guilty feeling of time wasting but was surprised by a really soft spiritual confirmation that I had to take a nap hahahaha. At least i interpreted it that way. I felt so much better after though. The Lord wants us to take care of ourselves.
Yesterday we had a zone activity with a 5 de mayo theme. we made tacos and had a homemade piñata competition and the missionaries did a great job with what they had. They were really funny. One companionship made it out of a cereal box with their likenesses on either side. It was really really funny to see the hnas take a bat to those things and we got some seriously good laughs out of that. For the first time ever the zone actually took some serious charitable initiative on clean up so that was a really nice surprise. Fun time.
It was a good week. We are still really in the busqueda but the members have been so willing to identify friends and family who arent members so we have a lot of seeds planted at least.
Ive thougtht a lot this week about the relationship between trials and happiness like i mentioned. I love a scripture in John 16:21-21 (i think) that ive mentioned before. Theres a really cool quote from CS Lewis that Jeffery Holland uses in a talk of his where he says that God is like a perfect surgean. If he took all of our challenges away right away, it would be like interrupting our surgical proceedures for what we need to become as Christs disciples. Its also interesting to think about the war in heavan. I think the argument waswnt just about agency, but about the decision to feel sadness in order to as well feel happiness, rather than feel neither at all. We obviously know the decision each of us personally made and also the decision that Adam and Eve made right after to eat the fruit, that was really the same decision all along. My patriarchal blessing mentions the "joys of mortality" which is a really interesting idea that suggestts that their are many many joys we have now thanks to our mortality that we did not have before being mortal and fallible like we are now. Really interesting and encouraging stuff. Chrits repeats many times to us to not doubt that premortal decision we made by reassuring us that the end result of our suffering will be worth the pain it takes to get there. A great example of that idea is when the apostols see the Ressurected Christ. I really doubt that they were still mourning the crusifiction and death of Christ when He appeared as a perfect and glorified being in front of them.
Its interesting because i remember that Nestor (my convert in lagunillas) mentioned that when he first learned about the atonement it seemed cruel adn pointless to him until he learned about the prize that was payed for by that suffering and how it applied to his life. Really profound idea from at that time an investigator.
Love you all thanks so much!
Elder Trevor Smith
Elder Trevor Smith
Elder Trevor Smith is a Mormon missionary in the Chile Concepcion Sur mission, the same mission where his dad served. Although this is Trevor's own mission, he grew up hearing about the beautiful land of Chile and the loving people that inhabit it. These are the letters from his experience there.