Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Wow! What a Week!!

Hey fam!!!

Wow, Okay, WHAT A WEEK!! 

Hey hey... I'll try to make sure I don't forget anything...

First off, my comp and I are doing really well!!! He's really awesome and super funny and yes, now I have photos of us!!!  And well, guess what happened this week???


It snowed!!!!!!!!! Like a lot here in la Sierra!!! The pictures from Madera were crazy!!! It literally started to look like Tahoe!!!  We were with some of our recent converts when snow began to fall, and we went outside for a snowball fight! Haha!! It was way coool!! :D And when we came in to Chihuahua for our Mission Conference this weekend, it even snowed there too!  And that never happens!




I also got the package from Aunt fer!!! Thank you so much!!!!! The jersey is awesome!!! And my comp said I definitely look like I'm Mexican in it!! Hahahaha -- so that makes me SUPER happy! :DDD

We went to Chihuahua this week!!! That was way awesome. Friday we had a leadership conference and it was one of the best we've had in a long time! :) Really, I enjoyed it so much. I felt like we got back to basics. I like simplicity, and I've found that everything goes better when things are simple. 

And then Saturday we had a special meeting with Dallin H. Oaks, the Apostle!!! That was way cool, and my first time meeting an apostle. Everything he said was incredible, but a few things really caught my attention... one, was when we were waiting for him. When he finally arrived, I felt like a wave hit me. The thing was, I didn't see him first, I felt it, then I looked up and saw him and everything made sense. That man definitely had the spirit with him, and it was made clear to me without even seeing him. I literally felt him before I saw him, and that doesn't just happen.

The other thing that was cool was that when I shook his hand he told me 'hola'... He thought I was latino at first. That was neat! hahah :)

But the other thing I really enjoyed was the way that many times he seemed to be speaking to me directly. Something I really liked was that when someone asked him a question, he almost always took a moment to listen, both to the question and to the spirit before answering. It's something that I'm going to reflect in my life, and I'm gonna do it much more often. :)

It was also awesome seeing every missionary in the mission!!! I saw so many familiar faces and that was just fun to live in for a moment. I think in all my time as a missionary I wont again be able to see all the mission together like that. It was something cool:)



Then Sunday, was also really awesome!! All of the areas in the mission didn't have services, and we went to a huge conference center to listen to Elder Valenzuela de los 70 and Elder Oaks. The messages were incredible and direct and on point, so that was great, but it was also so cool seeing SO MANY MEMBERS THAT I KNEW!!!!!  Seeing that I was in the City a full year as a missionary, and that the conference was in the city, I was able to see so many members!!! I saw friends from Cerro Grande, a bunch from Girasoles and Centro, and some from the north of the city too!!! And the best part for me was seeing and talking with so many people that I love so much!! It was an incredible experience honestly.


We heard a lot of good stuff, and received a lot of advice, but something I liked a lot was what Dallin H. Oaks said. He gave us the simple advice of 'just do your best.' It doesn't really matter what happens as much as what we did to make it happen, if that makes sense. If we try our best and see the results we want, perfect. And if we dont, pues ni modo, we gotta try again. I really enjoyed his frankness and simplicity of speech. It made it easy to get to my heart.

Everything is really good here in la Sierra -- it's cold and amazing. I really like the cold. :)

Everything's good, and I hope you guys have a good week!!!! 

Just do your best and everything will be alright :)

Till next time, I love you guys!!!
Nick

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Changes!

Hey! 


We had changes! I'm still here in la Junta, but my comp is leaving... And he's going to my hometown Chuviscar! He's gonna be in Centro, one of my favorite areas in the mission. He seemed excited, and I'm sure he'll do well there. 

My new comp is still traveling from Chihuahua, so I don't have pics of him yet. His name is Elder Mamani, and he's from Bolivia. I already know him and he's really cool, so I'm sure we'll get along great. He likes soccer, he's shorter than me, and super funny. He was comps with Elder Templeton and Temps told me they got along great, so I don't think well have any problems. hahaha! :)

But life has been really good here, We've been working a lot with the youth here in athe Junta... They need a lot of help. We thought we were gonna get another companionship here in the Junta, because before us there were three... Now we're just 2, so it gets hard to divide the time between members and our new friends and investigators that we're talking with. :) We've continued to meet a lot of cool people. Not as many as we'd like, but we're meeting a lot of em! It's really cool to be here, and I really like it a lot. 

But time for a spiritual thought... :D

This week I was thinking a lot about how we do things as missionaries, and I was reading the story of David vs Goliath. And a couple things called my attention...

Something that I like a lot is the faith David had. He was so sure that he was going to obtain his goal, but what I really liked his motive... When he explains himself, and his cause, he says that 'This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand...  that all the earth may know that there is God in Israel'.

Somthing I really like is that he wasn't worried about getting rich or becoming known, like the other soldiers were - He was simply determined to do the will of God and be His servant.

It's something that I admire and simply try to reflect. Anything that I do I just want to do for the cause of Christ. 

This week has been a good week, and we've seen a lot of progress. I think we're gonna keep seeing miracles here in the Junta, just like David did against Goliath. We're excited, and we should see miracles!

A couple of promised photos from our travels in la Sierra.




I hope you guys have a good week.. 
I love you guys a bunch!!!! 
TIll next time!
Nick

Sorry I'm Late...

Hey Fam,

Well we were in Chihuahua AGAIN so we were traveling and busy all day yesterday, so, I didn't have time to do just about anything.  But now I can write you guys :D

This week has been crazy awesome!!!!! We had baptisms!!!!!!!!!!!! SO AWESOME!!! THESE PEOPLE ARE AMAZING!!




So that happened!!! It was the first time I had the oportunity to baptize a whole family. It really was the coolest thing. The feeling of love and support there was incredible!

I really loved it, and I love them, and God loves them even more! :) Incredible really.

But that's starting with the end of the week!

The beginning of the week was awesome too! We went to Madera, and we stayed there a day to visit the missionaries there. They're great and I love being in Madera. It's really a cool town. But getting there was fun, we manged to stop by some places in between! There are members in some towns in between so we stopped by to see them. Pictures to come :D
But this week realyl was a good week and I learned something cool!
 
Its Matthew 8...

23 ¶ And when he was entered into ship, his disciples followed him.
24 And, behold, there arose great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep.
25 And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish.
26 And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearfulye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was great calm.
The interesting thing is how we apply this story! the first thing the disciples did was follow Jesus. Then, came the tempest, and then Jesus performed a miracle.

I stopped to think for a moment, and I wondered if some disciples thought in the moment, 'why on earth did I ge ton this boat??? If I didnt, I' still be safe on the beach!'

and well, a lot of us have the misconception that upon following Christ, life becomes super easy. It'd be cool if this were the case, but it's not. Many times we follow Christ and then comes a tempest, trials or tribulations or temptations or whatever, and sometimes it causes us to doubt. But, if we stay on the boat, Christ can perform a miracle in our lives. If we jump ship, or never follow Him to start, we'll never see the miracle. And it's always worth seeing the miracle! :)

This was something I liked this week, and I hope you guys have a good week!!! I love you guys a bunch!!! Send me questions, let me know what's new, send me photos, and fill me in!!!!

Till next time, I love you guys!
Nick

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Feeling Grateful!

Hey Fam! 


This week has been pretty awesome! A lot has happened, even since Monday (last PDay)! It was pretty cool, we were in Guerrero, a town close to the Junta, with the missionaries over there playing soccer. While we were playing, a BUNCH of people showed up and we started playing king of the court... and we beat everyone twice 😎 Remember that because it's cool later on...

But yea, this week has been great. We've been visiting these two families a lot - and now we have 4 baptisms planned for this Saturday!!! We're super excited. These people really are special and I think that it'll be a really special Saturday. They're super ready and super excited, and we are too! :D

Also, this week, I officially retired my first pair of shoes! That's always an exciting and sad moment for a missionary Hahaha! They served me super well! :D 


Also something kinda crazy happened the other day... We were in a restaurant and when we stood up to pay two older ladies started trying to talk to my companion in English, so I went back to talk too, and it turns out that they were two members of the church! They went on vacation and were on their way back home. The crazy part, is where home is! One was from St. George, and the other said California. So I asked where and she said Sacramento, And I said me too - and then she said ROCKLIN! And I was like WHAT?! I'm from Newcastle!  What are the odds that I'd meat someone from Rocklin in the middle of nowhere on Chihuahua in the Junta in la Sierra!!!!! It was so crazy!!!!! 

But I didn't catch her name, sooo I can't make any connections 😐 Yea, I know, my bad, but I was excited and we were going to be late for an appiontment... But it was really cool!!!!! On the down low, it was totally hard to speak 100% English - like what the heck?! But it was cool!! :)

So yea, we've also spent a lot of time splitting wood lately for people, and that really makes me feel right at home! Hahahaha! It's pretty cool! And one of the people that we cut wood for has a son, and the son asked us if we were the same 'hermanos' that play football Mondays Hahahaha!! So that's why it's cool! Our fame is spreading throughout la Sierra ;) Ha! but naw, it's cool! :)

Really it's been a blast up here in the Sierra, and I really hope that they keep me here for the next 10 months! Hahahaha! It would be way cool!!! But as for now we'll just take it a day at a time!! Hahaah :)

This is a town call San Juanito, it kinda looks like Auburn, right???

I hope you guys are well, I love you guys a bunch! I am super grateful - for my family, for the gospel of Jesus Christ, for the opportunity to be here in Chihuahua. I have been given so much. I have been personally blessed more then any one person could really ever deserve, I have received a lot of comfort and guidance in my life, and something that I want to do, more so, I have to do - is use all I have been blessed with to bless others, to help others feel the same love and guidance and comfort that I've felt. We all need to be conductors of God's love! :)

I love you!! Have a great week!!!! Be a conductor of God's love!!!
Till next time,
Nick :)

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

We Need to Use Our Experience to Help Others!

Fam!

This week was really good! We've been working a lot, my comp and I, and we're really enjoying our time here. The area is really cool and the Branch is awesome. There's a lot of youth here that wanna do good, and that makes me happy. Theres a lot of potential here so that's what were working on most :D And I was able to give a talk this week, being a missionary, I talked about baptism :) I thought it was alright, hahaha :) I keep all my talks, so you guys will be able to read em in a year, Okay? ;) 

Something for sure, is that we've seen a lot of miracles this week, even the little things we've seen are just amazing to me. I'd write a list but there'd be too many - Hahahahaha, honestly, it's incredible. We're meeting amazing people that want to progress. We're meeting and working with people that have already impacted me as a person. Every day I learn lessons of simplicity, being family centered, putting yourself out there, making friends, choosing the harder right instead of the easier wrong, and oh boy, I have felt Gods help every day. 

And this week I think I've learned a lot about the little things. O mas bien, the little things that God does in our lives so that we can help others or meet others needs :) For example, in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 it reads,

Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God
or basically, when we receive help from God, we have to be able to reflect this same comfort. If we are able to get through a hard experience with the help of God, we should look to help someone who's going through a similar experience. 

It's something that I really liked from my personal studies this week :)

But life is awesome, I hope all of you guys are killing it back at home!!! 

I love you guys a bunch!!!

Till next time!!!!
Nick

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Crazy Awesome Week!!

Hahahaha Mom, 

Don't worry, I'm not mad or sad or upset nor anything like it about you sending another care package, I just know, as the AMAZING WONDERFUL LOVING INCREDIBLE mother that you are, you are always going to go a little extra -- extra effort, extra care, and extra stuff!  And I don't want you to trouble yourself out of worry for me.  I just want you to know that I'm good here, everything's good, and I've purchased some winter clothes too, or have found them here in the house!! I have all the goods, and yea if I have extra I'll just leave for the next missionaries or donate it to members or friends.

But even though I don't need anything, don't worry about overdoing it, or anything like that, because there are a lot of missionaries that never get boxes. I consider myself amazingly blessed to have a Mom that loves me so much and has the means to send me packages to physically show her love because sometimes it's hard to express it when you're so far apart, I get that. A lot of times I feel like I can't properly show how grateful I am for the same reason.

But, you should know that this week was awesome!

My comp and I are killing it out here and this week we travelled out a little farther to a place called Madera :D And I took a video of the drive because I swear I could have been driving on Sierra College Boulevard at home... you have to see it to believe it.. and you will don't worry! ;)

But yea we have like 3 families that we're teaching and they're all going to church! It's pretty awesome! They're all super excited and we're gonna see what happens this month!!!

So yea, I don't know if I told you guys, the wards and branches here are pretty tiny! On a good Sunday we might have like 40 people in attendance. Often the missionaries have to pass the Sacrament, direct hymns or give talks or classes or whatever. It's one of the reasons I really enjoy it here, because we feel like an important part of the branch. It's really cool :)

I've gone back to basics, AGAIN, and I'm gonna be studying the Christlike attributes. Something I've realized is that I haven't been focusing on those for a while. I want to get back to being more like Him so that I can be better for Him and the other people in the world. I know I've said before, but we really can't do His work if we aren't like Him, so I hope that I can be a little more like Him every day until the end of my life :) He told us to be perfect, even as our Father is perfect, so we might as well start trying today!

I love you guys a bunch and I hope you have an amazing week! 
Until the next one :D
Nick

When I went to Leadership Council in Chihuahua I found friends from barrio Centro!!!

Family of gold here in Chihuahua!  I love them! :D


Alexis, my old Ward Mission Leader,
and is now on his mission in Costa Rica!!!!


Abandoned train station in la Junta. 




Tuesday, October 31, 2017

First Week Down in La Sierra!



Hey!

Sorry it's so late, we got caught up traveling in the zone. First, to answer your questions Mom, Junta is an old train town (it means junction) in the foothills of la Sierra which is it's own area. We're the Zone Leaders, and all the areas within the Zone are HOURS apart so we get caught up traveling like a lot. We're in an apartment, we have a microwave, no oven, and yes, I've heard in snows here but I'm good on thermals, I have plenty of sweaters, and there are a BUNCH of blankets here, and the water is good - so don't worry. 

I'm plenty warm enough, right now, honestly, the climate here feels a lot like home. And I really dig it. The area is spread out, so it's kind of like being a missionary in our stake at home... (but only the missionaries don't have cars). So if we were serving in Newcastle and we want to visit the missionaries in, for example, Lake of the Pines or Nevada City ward, here it might be San Juanito -- it's really far! So we will do a lot of traveling! :)

Okay, this week was awesome!!!  We had to travel to the Junta on Monday, and then Wednesday morning, we traveled back to Chihuahua for Leader Conference! So it gave us some time to visit some beloved members from my old area in Centro :) I took photos, but I left my camera at the house, so I might be able to send some tomorrow, seeing that we'll be traveling again to Madera this time.

So wait on that please :)

But, this week has been really good! We already have new investigators that are preparing for baptism! There's a young woman that we found, and she's awesome! She loved the Sunday classes and felt the Spirit so strong! She left in tears, and asked us when she could become a member of the church. She is really cool and should progress really fast!

We also found the son of a member that's ready to get baptized too! I don't know why the missionaries havent worked with him yet.. probably becuase they thought he was already a member! The kid goes to church every week with his family but hasn't gotten baptized, so we're also gonna be focused on him. We should have a good month of November!!!

This week has been really cool, getting to know the area, feeling cold air, and getting to know all the members! Here in the Junta we are going to work on bringing new people to church, and motivating the members to go every Sunday too! :) So we really are filling our schedule to the MAX, we're literally always talking or visiting with someone somewhere, sharing some spiritual thought or gospel message. It's really cool!  But Like I said, the area of the Junta is so much like Newcastle, and we're the only two missioneries, and we don't have a car, Hahaha! So we have to organize our day intelligently! But it's awesome. The people here are amazing and it's just awesome being able to be here. I really feel good here, and I'm really excited to see all the miracles the Lord has planned for the people here!!

But yea, that's pretty much all for this week, I'll try to throw some photos your way if time permits. We'll see what happens :P

I hope you guys are good, love you lots!  God is good and He loves us. I promise this week hasn't been just traveling and busy work, I've learned cool spiritual lessons too, but I know Mom wanted the area update and I'm out of time, so those will have to wait till next time :P 

I love you guys, hope youre well!
Till the next one!
Nick