Monday, February 23, 2015

February 23, 2015 Almost 19 years old! My first birthday away from home.

Hola familia ¿como estàn?

So... this week we had a special conference in Penco. Elder Nicholas Giovanni of the seventy came with his wife and spoke to us! He is a member of like the 7th quorum of seventy I think... and apparently that whole quorum is made up of Area Presidents of a few different countries (Chile, Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina) I think! But they were from Buenos Aires, and I really enjoyed the conference. He spoke mostly about obedience, and how important of a role it plays in our conversion. I found it interesting, he was talking about why 1. Members of the church have so many "rules". and 2 why missionaries have even more "rules!"... and as far as the missionaries go, the answer is simple. WE HAVE TO BE DIFFERENT.

We live in a world that is immursed in sin, and worldy things, that if we are going to be living in the world, and preaching repentance, and every other aspect of the gospel to these people and promising blessings from Gods hand... we have to be completely and literally "set apart" from the world! Its our sacred responsability as missionaries to be the Saviors representatives here, and so all the many rules are commandents are literally the armour that we wear to not only protect us, but also allow us to teach with Power and Authority from on high! And this is something I really liked, and I believe that we should be looking for any opportunity to keep the rules, rather than looking for opportunities to bend a rule every now and then. The Lord gives commandments to protect us! Not to restrict us....

And something that Sister Arrington said that I loved was a story of a friend of theirs who got a call to serve a mission in Germany. When he arrived in the MTC and took an aptitude test (to judge is skill on being able to learn a language) he scored lower than anyone who had ever taken that test! And so the MTC president called him into his office, and showed him a map of the world, with every English speaking mission marked! He told him that since he scored so low, and realistically wouldn't ever be able to learn German, he told him to pick any English speaking mission in the world, and they would send him there (somewhere where he could actually succeed).... This Elder asked if he could take some time to think and pray about it, and agreed to come back in the morning. The whole day he was praying and fasting, and thinking about which mission to pick. Long story short, he arrived the next day in the presidents office, and when asked about his answer, he told him that he had been praying and fasting all day and the Lord had given him an answer. I think he heard a voice tell him "I knew your abilities when I gave you this call" And so he told the President he was going to Germany!

And so the moral of the story is that it doesnt matter how hard things are, or how inadequate we feel, THE LORD KNOWS OUR ABILITIES, WHEN HE CALLS US TO DO CERTAIN THINGS! :) And I know that is true. And with that story coupled with the scripture from 1st Nephi: That the Lord won´t give any commandment to the children of men save he shall prepare a way for them to accomplish what he commanded! And I have been thinking about this a lot lately, especially when things are really really tough, that the Lord knows my abilities and called me here for a reason! I know thats true with each and every one of you guys too!

And so that was really the highlight of the week, the conference.... and also we had another dodge ball tournament today which was fun, and kind of weird playing dodgeball against Sierra Kinkade down here too! hahaha 

Something random that impressed me this week, was seeing on 2 different occasions a blind person taking the city bus! I don"t know why I thought it was so cool, but they just wait and when they hear the bus come, they stick their hand out to call it, and ask where its going, and if its the right place, they jump on like the rest of us.... but I'm not really sure how they know when to get off? anyway,  oh the many things you see in the mission! but yeah have a great week guys love ya :)

And its gonna be a good birthday I know! I will be thinking about you guys too! Thanks :))) and yeah, actually my companion and I went out and ate at a really good arabic food place today called Don-ke-bab! It was super good :) 

Elder Hartvigsen

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