We had a lesson with a member family that night and I shared that Faith is not believing. Faith is acting. As missionaries our duty is to invite people to use their Faith. We passed by one of our investigators houses to check on how he was doing. He said he was reading the Book of Mormon when we knocked on the door. He had the biggest smile on his face I have ever seen! I know he felt the Spirit. Sadly we haven’t been able to meet with him since because he works in the mines. Please pray for him! ( oh so here most of the men work in the mine, they work 7 for 7 shifts, so 7 days in the mine and 7 days at home)
This week went by way too fast.We had quite a bit of success this week though! I am feeling comfortable here now. Sometimes I cry, but it is usually because I am so happy about something or because Heavenly Father has given me something I really needed.
This email is not going to contain all of the miracles that happened this week but I will do my best to hit a few!
MONDAY: after I emailed we went to Iquique to go to the mall. I now know why so many people buy random stuff here. It was very tempting to buy unnecesary things because this mall was nutz! They had everything you could Imagen from all over the world! I only bought a small flag which I am grateful I didn’t spend a bunch of money on. But it showed me part of the reason why people values are so mixed up here. In the mall Elder Whibley talked with a couple people that worked in the store about the Gospel, It was super awkward, but I was grateful for his example. We ate at this place with some bomb Empenadas and now I am empanada crazy!
TUESDAY: This was a long day and most of our lessons fell. We had District meeting though and I really liked it. We set our goals for the mission.A drunk guy talked with us today and I felt really bad for him because he looked so broken down. He has been through the crazy wars here in the 70’s and has seen a lot of death. He doesn’t have his family anymore. We don’t know the full story on that.
Oh also I ate “guata” today for the first time… it was aweful. It is stomach chopped up in to little bite size pieces and served as a soup. You can tell what animal it came from because it tasted just like how the animal would have smelt when it was alive.hahaha. I tryed to eat it to be pollite but it was really hard. The husband of the lady who cooked it just thought it was funny to see me struggle to eat it and then he gave me a “back in my day” story about the war and how to eat food. It was great. haha He is now our investigator. Oh also I really enjoyed reading 2 Nephi 4 when Nephi basically gives a poem.
WEDNESDAY: We had 4 solid lessons today and I got to really connect with this Athiest kid Diego. We gave someone the confidence to ask his wife to marry him so he can be baptized. He is really ready for the Gospel and he loves the Gospel.Today Heavenly Father once again revealed exactly what I need to do. Every day I am amazed at the Grace of God! I was thinking when I first got here that since everyone is Catholic that they know about the Atonement pretty well. I wouldn’t spend much time on it in lessons. I started building everything I teach around the Atonement and I realized that a lot of people here don’t realize the significance of the Christ in our lives. I helped people come unto Christ today and I am grateful for that opportunity. Also I had my first Pichanga today. It is a party food here that is Bomb.
THURSDAY: We went to Pica today which is the best place around because all the member are super strong and people are very receptive to the message. The only problem is we can’t proselyte there… anyway we went there with the Branch Mission Leader and I tryed to get to know him. We are trying to get him more involved in the work.
In Pica we visited some member families and taught about the importance of family history work. I love thinking about the Temple and it was fun to talk with people and get them motivated to go! We also visited a few references and one women (Elizabeth) was soooo ready and excited to talk with us. She wants to know more and she actually accepted a baptismal date!! I love Pica!
FRIDAY: We really stepped up the game with talking to people in the street. We have a goal to talk with 14 people a day, in order to talk with 10,000 new people by the end of the mission! I learned a lot about the plan of salvation today. (Alma 12)
We were knocking doors looking for someone around 8 at night and we came to one door and a man answered and shook our hands like he was expecting us. Then I realized we had seen him the other day but never got his information. I asked him if he remembered us and he said ” yes of course, you are from the U.S. and you are from Canada right” (pshhh nobody ever remembers us here haha we were so happy) He then said ” I don’t think its a coincidence that you found my house by accident, He asked if he could join us at church this Sunday with his family…. We taught the Restoration of the Gospel to him on his doorstep and he was very interested. I know that people are prepared by the Lord to recieve this message!
Saturday: We learned a lot through some not so good lessons today but we are also getting better at starting conversations with people.
Today I read up on Spiritual Gifts and it made me realize how grateful I am for mine and for the guidance of my Patriarchal blessing. I have read it a ton in the field. I want anyone who has one to read it! And also for those who haven’t gotten one yet to get it now if they can!
Sunday: To put it very simply, I learned alot about how to be a better friend and also that I need to learn more charity, that is one of my biggest goals for the mission. I love my mission and everyday I learn something new. I know that this is blessing peoples lives even if some days I feel like I stink at this. I know that we are truly guided in this day by the Priesthood and the Prophet and his Apostles.
Elder Joseph Gordon