Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Making Sacrament Sacred

Hola Familia Verde,
Well let me just start off my letter by saying it's amazingly cold here. Our car thermometer said 25 at one point yesterday. I think I'm about ready to team up with Rudolph and go find the Heat Miser and arrange something. But it sounds like you all are doing pretty good, so I'm happy. I really like you're Family mission plan ideas Dad. It sounds like the Work of Salvation is alive and well out there in Gilbert! Let me know when our neighbor Gary has a baptismal date! hahah.
Well it was harder to say goodbye to Elder Green than I thought. After 4 months of serving together everything becomes pretty fluid and we became really good friends. The good thing is that Elder Hitchcock is a an awesome missionary. He is from Idaho, he talks a lot about horses and he sings a ton. He's always excited and the members love him so it'll be good transfer!
I'll start with a funny story (kind of). So we (me and Elder Green) found a guy on the street a couple weeks back named Santana and he said that we could come back another day. So we tried by a couple days ago and as we're knocking the door Elder Hitchcock asks who is this? I told him he's a man we found named Santana. He responds, wow that sounds kinda like Satanas (Satan in Spanish). I chuckled. A few moments later Santana answers and I look at him and say Como esta Satanas- Uh Santana? He responds and we set a time to come by another day. But yeah I called a potential investigator Satan. I blame Elder Hitchcock, hahah.

On Tuesday night, before Elder Green left, we visited Hermano "V". He's been coming back to church and really making big changes. After our lesson he paused and he said, Elders, I just want to thank you for all that you have done. I really needed someone like you two to come and help me realize what's important. I know now that I need to be in church with my wife and daughters, and that's what I plan on doing from now on. His wife and daughters' mouths dropped and me and Elder Green just smiled from ear to ear. I'm so grateful that God gave us such an amazing miracle to watch happen. I know that the Spirit changed his heart. I also know that this is according to the Lord's timing as well, Hermano "V" has cancer in his eye and in his back. He also went to the hospital last week for a heart condition. They've burned three tumors in his back already. Yet he continues to work and come to church when the recovery process allows him to. Keep him in your prayers!
Elder Hitchcock and I visited Hno "H" this week. He said something that I thought was really profound. Talking about the Sacrament he said, "I just don't understand the need to have out iPads and phones during sacrament. Many times I've seen members pull out those things during the most important thing they do each week. If we were with the Savior before his crucifixion, taking the bread and the water at the last supper, would we pull out our phone? Definitely not!" (All my quotes are roughly translated, just so ya know). I thought a lot about that and he's right. We really are performing an ordinance during that sacrament meeting. We wouldn't pull out our phone while we are being baptized or confirmed either. Anyways, I don't share this to come down on anyone, more that it just really strengthened my testimony of the importance of the Sacrament and making it sacred.
One last cool experience. We have some neighbors who live on the second level and are always on their porch, smoking. When we first moved in, Elder Green and I would always be friendly and say hi as we walked by. At first they kinda just mumbled hi back and kept doing whatever they were doing. But day by day and week by week they became more and more friendly as we walked by. We started talking to them about bikes, the Ravens, and soon it was about their past and religious beliefs. This week they invited us in and we were able to share a little bit of the restored gospel. Although they aren't Spanish and we will have to pass them to other Elders, I really thought it was cool to see how just being nice can soften people's hearts.
Well I'm not going to lie, I'm pumped for Thanksgiving. They announced that we aren't allowed to proselyte during the whole day so we will be spending the day with members. I'll let you know what happens and we'll take some pictures. One things for sure though, I'm not going to eat as much as I did last year, hahah. Well I love you and appreciate you all. I say it a lot but I'm so grateful for the family I was blessed with and the example they are to me.
Elder Greene

The Elders Green(e) and Hermano "V"

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