Monday, March 30, 2015

Being Filled

 I LOVE FOOD. The members always fill me up here :D I think your right. I need to look back and see how far I've come. The truth is that I am so different. I used to get angry over things. I used to get more frustrated. I think a lot more before I act now. I feel the spirit more. I am kinder to people. I can choose to be happy and choose to overcome. I used to get upset and not be able to move on or just smile, even though I should have. The atonement gives me the strength. I do thinks I couldn't do before. 
   It will be cool  to watch General Conference in Spanish, but it's hard to get as much out of it, and it is the saddest feeling hearing their voice right at the beginning, and then it change to Spanish. However, I'm pretty sure that President Scott does his own Spanish recordings, so that's cool :D And who knows, maybe there will be some more Spanish speakers :D I'd like that. 
    It's a real blessing to be on a mission. It's crazy to think that I am already over a quarter of the way through. I love to see the lives of these people change. We were finally able to have a lesson with a less active that we have been trying to get to. He was talking about how he is trying to change his life right now. He has been trying to stop smoking, so we immediately taught him about the word of wisdom. It was awesome. He gave us 12 references! We had been a little worried about getting references, but he gave us some! It felt really good, because we have something like 16 member households, and we've pretty much received every name that every one of them knows. So we have been thinking about inviting every member in our area to get to know three new neighbors, and then we'll start working with them. We're thinking about making a little "Galaxia Army" of member missionaries, and checking up on them every other day or so to see how they are going with the invitation we left them.
We have a couple that is close to baptism, and just started keeping all of their commitments. They went to the "noche blanca," (The night of white-Baptismal night) at church, and have been reading everything we leave. It's been really good. We're really excited for them. Elder Hale works hard, and he's a good companion. I've really enjoyed being with him, and watching his Spanish, teaching, and faith increase. I've enjoyed teaching this week. We've been trying to have better unity, and use the teaching skills in preach my gospel. I organized my scriptures by themes a few weeks ago, and so I've been adding scriptures to use for each lesson as I go along. I've been able to read a lot in Jesus the Christ -which is amazing- and I feel like I'm getting to know Christ more. My whole view of him is changing as I read. I love He and God more and more as I study the scriptures and the missionary library. Well, cambios (change meetings? What is English?) are coming up soon. I have mixed feelings about what may happen. I've been here so long that it would be hard to say goodbye and have a change, but also I feel that I'm ready to leave. But I'll be happy whatever happens, as long as I am cast into the deep water, because that is where I am wont to swim :D    I love that picture you sent me. I got the teary feels looking at it. I've been reading Jesus the Christ a lot this week. I could talk about it forever, however, in the part that I read today it talked about how he turned water to wine. I found it really cool because Elder Talmage talks about how Christ was probably going table to table, enjoying the feast. Jesus is social. That is so cool. I thought of that when you mentioned what Chellie said about the people at the dance. I guess I have a Christ-like attribute :D I've really been able to understand Christ more as I have been able to read. He mentions how Christ would have seemed a lot more normal than we might think, and that he wasn't socially obscure. I love Christ more and more every day. He is my savior. He is our savior. He is the son of God. My faith in him grows daily as I strive to be like him and understand his character. 
   Anyway, I love you guys BUNCHES. BIG OL' BANANA BUNCHES. And I can't wait to talk again.
 - I love you mom :D 
Elder Dazey XD 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Learning to Apply the Atonement

Well, it's been a great week! We had a lot of meetings, so we didn't get to work as much; however, we have been able to improve this week. We were able to keep up our member present lessons and get some new investigators at the same time. We got 5 new investigators! YES! We also had a really good experience where we were going to a less active member's house to have a lesson, but they moved. (They told us that they would move, and they're still in our area) But someone had already moved into their house. We contacted her and she was very nice and seemed interested. We finally got our map up and we organized our wall chart differently to be the 9 steps to baptism. (Something we have been learning from our zone) Hopefully this will all make us a lot more organized, focused, and effective. We were able to contact quite a few references that we have had for a while this week.
   We had a zone conference and it was a blast! I really enjoyed it, and I learned a lot. President talked about the Atonement to prepare us for Easter. I have been studying about the Atonement and reading in a Liahona that he gave us to help prepare us for the new Easter initiative. He told us about a man he had is life basically ruined by someone else, and how the Atonement helped him forgive that man. After that, I started to think about how the Atonement is working in my life. I realized that I am doing things now that I could not do before. I realized that I am a lot slower to anger now. I realized I am learning not to judge and to forgive more quickly. The companionship inventory that Elder Hale and I had was amazing. Super spiritual. He is growing a lot. He and I have been so much happier. I honestly think that it is because we understand each other more. He is really progressing and becoming a better Elder every day, and we have talked in Spanish like nobody's business this week! J (It's been one of our goals for a while) I have learned more about how I can have charity, and the Atonement has been present in every step of the process.
   We had been hoping to baptize this next week, but our potential candidate got a job and moved away for like 4 months. Aww man. We had a date with Armando and Alondra for the 4th of April that we moved to the 11th (They are family of Maria Elena who we baptized a month and a half ago). We have to get through a marriage, they need testimonies, and more church attendance, but we did just have a powerful lesson about The Book of Mormon, so hopefully that has helped. We also have investigators that have been almost constantly on edge of giving up. They like the lessons because they like to learn, and they have been to church once. The husband is not progressing, but the wife has been reading the Book of Mormon and has a testimony that it is true! She is still afraid to change because she is Catholic, but we talked about how she now also knows that this is the only true church, so hopefully she comes through just fine. We have been working hard, and each day we work just a bit smarter. It feels good. I've been changing a lot. Changes make me happier. You won't see the same person walking into the airport when I get home. I haven't been sick for all of Elder Hale's training. No leaks from the rain in our apartment, and a hot shower every day mom XD    I'm really happy right now. Well, I love you, and I hope that you all have a great week! 

-Elder Dazey 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Learning more and more

Elder Hale and I have been able to talk even more this week! By the time we got to companionship inventory, we were able to say a lot about the strengths that we have. Sadly we didn't have too much that we could say on how we could improve, but I think that we were happy with each other, and we were able to make a good step in the right direction on that. We've had a pretty good week. We were a little more excited at the beginning of the week because we have 3 baptismal dates that we thought would make it. At this point they have missed some important chances for attendance at church. We had no new investigators this week. There were many chances, but they all fell through. I felt a little down by the end. We did however get more members in our lessons this week. We are working hard, but I feel like we've hit an obstacle in our progress because we haven't been able to get new investigators. Our investigators all have some kind of obstacle. I know that as we work smarter, we will harvest the fruits that we are planting.
   We had some exchanges this week. Elder Gomez and I talked about how sometimes many missionaries want to be strictly obedient, and then they get upset at their companion for not doing it. He talked about how he had seen that people who did that were obedient to the rules (except possibly for the law that Christ set to not be angry) but, that those people were not happy. I realized that I am not happy when I do that, so I had to think about what was going wrong. Obedience is supposed to make you happy, so I must have been doing something wrong. I realized that I should read about judging others. I read in True to the Faith, and I realized that I need to start judging their situation before I judge the person. We should judge righteously and understand the facts enough to make a good judgement. I realized that for every time a companion was disobedient, I probably needed to look at his situation first, and then help that situation get better instead of blaming it on bad character or something. There are times when I am disobedient, and if I judge others without seeing their heart first, God will judge me without seeing my heart, because he will judge me in the same way that I judge others. I realized that I needed to take more care in my judgements.
We have started to have a lot of rain. I have put that giant coat to use. I am very glad that it is waterproof! I've enjoyed the rain. I love the way that nature has been the past few days. Today was a clear, beautiful day. We got to unwind in a zone activity today. I've done a lot of singing recently. We will have a zone conference and a "Noche blanca" where we will baptize a bajillion investigators. We set up some choir numbers for both of them.
Well, I am glad to be here on the mission. I am learning to help others, and much about life in general. I am glad for this opportunity that I have. My faith in Christ is growing every day. I have seen how I can be better, and I have gained a lot of wisdom. I am still very far from the ultimate goal, but I know that the little things I do every day are changing me. I've need this opportunity to train. I can already see what a blessing it has been in my mission. Thank you all for the encouragement. I love you!
-Elder Dazey

Monday, March 9, 2015

Knowledge and Families

  It has been a good week this week. We had another baptism! Wooo!!! Her name is Maria Dolores. She has been an investigator for something like 8 months, and now she's a member! I could feel the party in the heavens when she was baptized and confirmed. :D We have been working hard, and this week we didn't have many lessons with a member present and we didn't get many references. However, we are going to try to fix that real quick. We already sent around a list with the members to be able to write their names and when they can accompany us again.  We have a plan for a map to put on the wall with all of the houses marked with reference information. We're going to color coordinate the houses for members, investigators, references contacted and received from members or nonmembers and the names of the people in each house. With this we can know which houses are already references and we can ask people that we know if they specifically know the people in those houses. Especially with members, we could ask them to get to know specific neighbors to be potential new investigators. I think our references will be a lot more organized that way, and hopefully we can get the members to do more missionary work.
I can't remember everything off the top of my head, but I'll try. I don't have my journal with me to remind me. I have thought a lot about my future family this week. I've thought about parenting and how I will raise and help my own kids. I feel like I'm being prepared for those things. I feel that I will face many of the same problems in parenting and being a husband that I will here. I've also thought a lot about the type of wife that I want. I received revelation yesterday about an attribute that I hope for in a wife. I have always thought about how I want a wife that is as smart or smarter than me in "school smarts." My heart has made a change. Mom, you always say that you are not very smart when it comes to computers or other technological or mathematical stuff. I realized yesterday that it was more important that my future wife be a teacher than someone very intelligent in the ways of the world. For our kids, it will not matter how much knowledge she has if she can't share it with them. I want to find someone who is very intelligent spiritually, and I know now the attribute that I should look for is that of a teacher. Preach My Gospel talks about how true intelligence is taking a very complex subject and teaching it so that a child can understand. You always made learning easy, Mom. Thank you for being intelligent. Maybe not in the ever changing ways of math and technology, but in the ways of God, and in the teaching of your children. We, your children, are as the army of Helaman. You as our mother have taught us to have faith in the Lord. I want to find a loving teacher for a wife, and so today I began studying teaching skills, in hopes that I'll be a better teacher myself. I had also read about King Benjamin (You  gave me his name, so i think it's important I get to know him :D) I read about how he taught his sons, and I imagined myself teaching my sons (Kind of like a homeschool seminary class) I already love my future family. That family becomes clearer and clear every day, especially the man I want to be. You guys, as my family, are changing every day, and I can see the blessings of your righteous actions. Thank you, Mom and Dad, for being my examples, and helping me understand the principles of the family. I am excited for the future,  and I know that my mission is preparing me for it.  
   I love you all bunches and bunches, and I hope that you have a good week. Tell Julia, Aaron, and Chellie to write me. 
Elder Dazey
PS> We also had a fun time filling the baptismal font with trash cans of water this week because they didn't have enough water in the building. It was awesome. The young men were all there helping us fill it from an underground store of chlorinated water :D

Also some Cinderella-ing in the baptismal font. And a photo of some dashing young missionaries. Also there is a new elder in my district that sang in BYU Choirs. He's AMAZING. We're gonna start singing duets. He did Cinderella his last year of High school. Like the same one :O

Monday, March 2, 2015

Learning Together

Well, everything is well in Galaxia. Our Investigators are coming to church! YES! One of our recent converts recently found an anti-Mormon website and started getting freaked out about some things that it said. Elder Hale was a little afraid to try to respond to some of those doctrinal heavy-hitters because he didn't want to confuse them with his Spanish, so I explained as simply as I could to them the doctrine that we do believe, and that those people only wanted to instill fear in her. Everything that I taught were things that were touched on in lesson 2, so I just retaught and showed her some scriptures that talked about those subjects. She seemed a lot calmer at the end, and said that she'd try to avoid people and websites like that, because they only mean to deceive. I had some good studies this week in which I was able to think about how I could be more efficient by trying to be calmer. Elder Hale taught me the progressive relaxation exercise in "Adjusting to Missionary Life." I felt super relaxed, and I felt like I didn't have to worry so much about things because whether I worry or not, almost the same result will come out. I've been trying to imagine positive outcomes in everything, and I feel like that keeps me positive. I think I expect too much of myself sometimes, and I need to learn to laugh at my mistakes and realize that it's okay to mess up sometimes. We set up like a million (which happens to be an outrageous exaggeration) appointments with new investigators this week, but most of them fell through. We did however, find a new family that seemed very interested to listen, and seem like they could progress well. We had what was probably our most constructive Companionship Inventory this week. I was able to focus on things that I could try to help him with, and we kept the whole thing light-hearted and were able to feel more love in that meeting. I think that little by little I understand this whole companionship "thing" more. I feel like there is more love, service, and smiles to it then I might have thought of before. I continue thinking about what I can do to be more diligent, and so a goal this week is to be more sociable, to compliment people more, and to ask good, heartfelt questions, and then listen. We had the opportunity this week to do a service project! I feel like it is so hard to find planned service, however, we were able to help someone paint their new dry cleaners business. The lady who owns it is an investigator of some of the sisters in our district. It felt really good to do that. It reminded me of planned service I would do before the mission, and it was really fun :D There was a protestant lady that we had set up an appointment with, and she only really wanted to contend. I very calmly explained, with a smile, what we believe, in hopes that maybe she would understand the church more. At some point I realized that she wanted to tell us what the church believes, so I bore my testimony, and gave her a pamphlet with our number in case we could serve her in any way. I felt a bit drained afterwards. I know that my letter is organized differently, I brought my journal this time and am using it to recount some experiences.
    Elder Hale is learning a lot, and some of the things he hasn't learned are for some fault of mine, but we still have another 6 weeks to get better! Nothings gone particularly wrong or really good, it has just been a steady, diligent progression this week.
   We have another baptism this weekend, so we are going to help this sister be ready this week. I've felt good this week. I think I am slowly starting to find a balance.
Love you guys! You're the besterest! 

-Elder Dazey