Tuesday, March 17, 2015

March 16, 2015 Last week in Talcahuano

Hey guys! so, another week has past here in Talcahuano, and my time here is winding down. Im trying to soak up all the memories, and everything about the city and members here!!

... one interesting/random/funny thing that we have enjoyed here is going to buy candy at this store called La Fruna. Its so interesting how life here is so different in South America, even from the smallest details to the biggest! But this store, they sell stuff in bulk (like Costco). And the majority of the things here are candy, cookies, soda, milk, cookies supplies, etc... but most of the people that have a little venders cart that sell stuff on the side of the road come here and buy their stuff in bulk! Thats the best thing is that everything is so much cheaper here, and the interesting thing is how they work. There are like 5 to 7 workers behind the counter working in this big room, and the counter runs along 3 walls, and everyone just has the workers pick out what they want, and bring it down from the shelves, and most of the time people have a huge order of stuff, and when they are finished the worker just shouts out really load the entire order, and there is this guy in the middle of the room on this big tower (I call it the Rameamptum)  and he is just typing out the order so fast and prints it off, but its nuts in there (especially on saturdays) because everyone is just shouting out names of food and candy and stuff and he is somehow keeping track of everything, and then the next person yells out the order!  its great... life here is much more fast paced than in alpine ;)

But no this week has been good, and lots of the same things, visiting the same people, and just hoping that we are making a difference here in the ward! I was sad to hear that Mauricio, one of the first less actives I met when I got here, (well for a time he progressed really well, and is now regressing lots... its been an up an down battle for him) He is only like 33 years old, but is a severe alcoholic, and has 2 beautiful little kids that live with the grandmother, because the mom of the kids left after they were born, but anyway he was drunk and fell and really badly damaged his face, apparently broke his nose and cheek, and he is in a really bad condition. And its really so sad to see how badly Satan, can destroy someones life or take it in such a wrong direction, with the simple tool of alcohol. Obviously this isn't his only problem, but I have literally seen how awful alcohol affects families here... and its so sad!

There are so many men, and teenagers that literally DO NOTHING with their lives, except sit on the corner of the street ALL DAY... and drink and smoke with their friends. They don't work or go to school, they just sit there and waste their lives away... its tragic! Thats why everyone should be "anxiously engaged, in a good cause!"

And, well something interesting I studied in the scriptures was about Forgiveness! Because there is this one lady in the ward that has completely stopped going to church, because there are people there that have offended her, and she cant throw her pride away and forgive them, therefore she is losing out on so many of the blessings of the gospel, just because of this. Its actually shocking how many people I have met that tell me that they can't go to church, because the people there are hypocritical, or have done them wrong and they can't forgive, or something along the lines of that. And so what I studied was the parable in Matthew 18:21-35. Its about a King that has a servant that owes him a fairly large debt! The servant pleads for him to disregard the debt because he was going to sell him, and his family, but he didn't have the money to pay the debt. anyways The king lets him off the hook and the servant goes out to one of his like co-servants who owes him a very small debt. And he demands that he pay him that which he owes him. Anyways the king is so disappointed because the servant is being a big hypocrite!

well... long story short, thats exactly how our father in heaven feels after he forgives us of all the infinite debts we have against him, and we withhold forgiveness from our brothers and sisters. King benjamin taught "Aren't we all beggars?" He used this to demonstrate how we shouldn't withhold our substance from the poor, but I believe it summarizes the message of forgiveness also! Who are we to withhold forgiveness when we so often plead with our Father to forgive us of our many many debts!!!

Anyways, we shared a scripture that says that the Lord won`t forgive us of our sins, if we first cannot forgive our brethren! Thats a powerful lesson in itself!

Yeah so, that was was stuck out to me... that no matter how hard it is to forgive, think of how many times the savior and our father have infinitely forgiven us! :)

Hopefully the spirit can teach you something from this message, as it taught me something! And hope you guys have a good week! Things are good here! Cambios next week :)

Elder Hartvigsen

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