Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Creative Plumbing, Unpleasant Zone Leader Responsibilities, and Lots of Fun Teaching Opportunities

This week was a good one. It was nuts and went by too fast, but a good one.

Things are going well on the investigator side. We are not teaching a ton of people, but almost all the people we are teaching have baptismal dates. We went off this week taking out dates. It was good.

The Family Gonzalez is good. They have their baptismal date for this upcoming Saturday, but I think we are gonna bump it until the 26th. They are progressing well and all, but it is just hard to have lessons with them. We usually only get one or maybe two in a week. They lack a few lessons and I think that we are just gonna play it safe and have the baptism on the 26th. We will see though. I think that the baptisms will be with the Mom, Xiomara, and the daughter, Tatiana. Carlos is good and all, but he is even more behind on the lessons and will not be able to attend the upcoming weeks because of a class for university. He will be baptized sometime in October. They are good and really like us.

Arelis and Brayan continue to somewhat progress. They receive us, listen to us, and say yes to all our questions. The problem is that I do not think they are fully grasping what we are teaching. When people always say Si Señor to every question, to me it seems like they are not listening. However, they came to all three hours of church this week. We will see what happens.

We are also seeing progress in a women named Andrea and her daughter Sandra. They are living with an inactive member who is separated from his wife and kids and now lives with Andrea and Sandra. They are super cool and they are all trying to come back to the church. Obviously, Alexander has to be divorced and then married with Andrea until she can get baptized, but they really want it. We have a baptismal date for the 24th of October with them. There is a lot of paperwork to be done, but they are progressing well.

We are also teaching the uncle of a recent convert. The man`s name is Jorge. He is an old guy that is honestly a bit strange (doesn’t leave the house, doesn’t have too many friends, etc.). The uncle introduced us to him and we have been seeing some progress. He has come to church, but he leaves for a 10 day trip to Sogamoso to visit somebody. So that throws a wretch in the work. He is good though. We will see how he progresses.

Elder Gonzales and I are well. No problems. The skin on my feet is real weird. It doesn't hurt or burn or itch, just feels real weird.

Also, dad you would be proud. My toilet was broken so today I went plumber on it and fixed it. It is definitely jimmy rigged, but it works much better. I was proud of myself.

This week went by fast because of the Zone meeting and 2 interchanges. The zone meeting went well and we trained the Elders accordingly. We then did an interchange per the request of Pres Laney with a companionship that is really struggling. They are in an area and the area has nothing going for them. They are not working and are not happy with each other. I went with the worse of the two and tried to buoy him up and get him working. We had a good day. However, things got out of hand the next day. After the interchange with the problematic companionship, we immediately did interchanges with another companionship. This companionship is fine, but at 5 PM; we get a call that one of the Elders from the bad companionship had separated from his comp. So we had to go all crazy to get the Elder. He just left his comp and went back to the house. I arrived, without Elder Gonalez because he was with the other comp, and we had to open the door because the Elder wouldn’t open it. I was very frustrated to be honest. He told me that he wanted to go home. We talked him down and had him call President. Nothing else happened, just President asked us to watch them with a close eye. It felt like I was babysitting children. Ridiculous.

Also, the Wednesday of the Zone meeting we had emergency transfers in an area, so we had to pick up a new Elder from the bus terminal at 5 in the morning. So pretty much the first night I slept little, then the next two nights I didn`t sleep in my own bed. It was fine, just a pain.

Also, sleeping in others people’s beds is not difficult. At first I thought it was weird, but now it is whatever. People should wash their sheets more often.....

I think one thing that I have improved on as a missionary is trying to comply with Christ`s two most important commandments. They are in the order given for a reason. I am trying to become a better servant of the Lord, trying to put him and his desires, above mine and those of other missionaries or people. I am not perfect, obviously, but I am more and more fearless when it comes to saying what needs to be said when it needs to be said to the people that need to hear it. Not everyone is gonna like the truth, and I have just become more accepting of that fact. You can`t please everyone, so what I try to do is please the Lord. I still have a long ways to go, let me assure you.

About 18 years ago, the guerilla forces planted a bomb in the chapel that I used to attend in Diamante here in Bucaramanga. They blew it up, but the bomb only hurt a small section of the chapel. Apparently the bomb was huge. Anyways, some drunk in the street came up to me and whispered in my ear, "remember what happened 20 years ago? Watch out" and then laughed a very cruel laugh. He then began to call me all sorts of vulgar language. It was an interesting experience. I love Colombia and especially Bucaramanga.

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