Wednesday, 26 October 2011

iMilagros - 17 OCTOBER 2011

FAMILY!! It´s so nice to hear from all of you!!
Mum and Dad it sounds like you had an awesome trip! I´d like to do that one day. I think Europe is so cool. About the pictures, I sent some letters off last week and stuck my SD card in it so it has the pictures on it. Sounds like everyone´s been super busy!!   That´s cool about your calling Dad!! How are the priests?? Are you more busy now?? You´ll be a great Young Men´s President. It´s too bad you never got to have a calling in the quorum that I was in, but that´s ok. That´s crazy about Dave Lyons too, it´s so cool what the priesthood is capable of. I haven´t had the chance to say a blessing yet in Spanish, although I´ve participated in some. I´m excited for the day when I´m called upon to do it in Spanish. I´m sure it´ll be a powerful experience.
Michael, sounds like you´ve been busy kicking trash at school, getting ready to kick the ACT´s trash, having fun with ladies, getting ripped, and prepping to be a missionary!! You´re gonna do awesome . That sucks about the tickets, but it´s also really funny. I laughed. Also, I´m excited to hear about motag. I failed to win (I have plenty of excuses believe me) but you have to do it for me. Do the Blomfield name well. Are you super busy with meetings and stuff with that?
Charly you wanted to be twister for halloween? What´s twister? I completely forgot about halloween and thanksgiving and stuff!! Theydon´t have thanksgiving here and I guess halloween isn´t so big. I was so happy to hear about your talk on Sunday!! I´m sure you did great. I´m similar when I give talks. I´m not nervous at all until right before when I´m sitting on the stand, but as soon as I start speaking, the nervousness goes away. I´m sure you rocked it.

Jake! What´s it like being 2nd counsellor?? I´m so excited that you´re a deacon. I don´t think I fully appreciated what it meant to be a deacon. It´s a big deal!! You have the Priesthood of God!! Do you know what that means? You can do things in His name!! It´s awesome, and it only gets better. When you become a missionary, you get to be an official representative of the church, and of Jesus Christ. You should do a study in the scriptures with Dad or something about what it means to have the priesthood. It really is a big deal. Also, make sure you have good friends in Junior High. People start to go weird like you said and do bad stuff. Stay away from it cause it´s so bad! I´m sure you´ll be great though, you´ve always been great.

I got all those letters and pictures this week!! Thank you so much!! It made up for the lack of emails hahaha. I was super excited. I was especially excited to see the photos of Ricky´s baptism. I´m so happy for him!! Tell him congratulations for me. And now Dennis is getting baptized?? That´s so exciting!!!! That´s sweet about the money that I´m getting too. Nice!! Oh and for Christmas, if you wanna send something it should probably be now. Toys sounds great!!! That would be awesome for investigators!!

The mission is divided into two parts, the inside and the outside. The inside is all the zones closer to Concepción, and the outside is the rest. I´m in the outiside. We had a conference with the outside part, so I got my mail. All the missionaries who hadn´t had the "capacitación", which was within 6 months or something, got to go. It was incredible!! President and Sister Humphrey came with the assistants and taught us these things that we learned in the MTC and study in companionship study called the Fundamentals or the 8 Simplified Lessons. I think they´re gonna be putting them into Preach My Gospel soon. They basically take the fundamentals of teaching and help us improve as teachers in different aspects. Like helping our investigators understand the role of the Spirit, the Book of Mormon, attendance at church, and prayer. Also we practice asking inspired questions to help them think about what we´re teaching. We teach people not lessons, and practice how we start to teach. I´ve learned so much!! It´s cool because before, the thought has always been that numbers don´t mean a thing, and that baptism needs to be approached with caution. First of all, numbers mean everything!! Numbers represent people, and the numbers we report (key indicators) help us know if we´re using our time wisely, and how effective we´re being. If we have more numbers, it means we´re teaching with more clarity, and we have the Spirit. Some people think that the reason they have low numbers is because the people aren´t ready for the gospel, or because they have a bad companion, or whatever, but those are just excuses. The way to have success is to work hard and do it right. The scriptures promise us that the field is white already to harvest, not brown already to plant. There are people ready for us, they just sometimes don´t know it, so we have to make sure that they do.

Another thing is baptism. Our purpose is to help bring people unto Christ, and of course we want baptisms, but there is a dominant idea that baptism needs to be approached with caution because we don´t want to be too pushy with the investigators. That´s wrong!! I´ve learned that. I never realized how important baptism was until now. It´s simple. The ONLY way people can really come unto Christ and enter into God´s kingdom. It´s blunt, but the scriptures say it. Also, the Atonement of Jesus Christ, all that he did for us, accomplishes absolutely nothing in our lives without baptism. We can´t be cleansed from sin without it! For our investigators, it means that we have to paint the big picture for them. We have to say that if they want eternal life, they have to be cleansed from sin. To be cleansed from sin, they need to be baptized. To be baptized, they need to keep their commitments and live the commandments of God! It´s that simple. Our goal isn´t to get them to be members through baptism, it´s too help people repent and be cleansed of their sins through baptism, and in the process of keeping the commandments of God, they become members. For us as missionaries, that means that we have to be very clear and direct. We try and give the baptismal invitation the first visit if we can, because if they see the importance of baptism and set a date for a goal, all the difficult commitments they have to keep and commandments they have to leave become so easy and necessary when looked at with the vision of eternal life.

I look at all the greatest missionaries in the scriptures, and they never beat around the bush. They teach and address the needs of the investigators, and realize that the only true cure for their problems or path to eternal life, is through the gospel of Jesus Christ, and through a valid baptism. If we as missionaries can make the connection that for our investigators to have true happiness and eternal life, they need baptism, we can have so much more success. Our goal is that they are baptized and stay active. The scriptures say that perfect love casteth out all fear. If we love our investigators perfectly, we want them to have eternal life, and therefore want them to be baptized, and therefore we have no problem extending commitments to them, and being bold.  Of course we have to be sensitive to their needs and we can´t be overbearing, but we have to know off the bat who´s going to progress and who´s not. Sorry I´m being all preachy or whatever right now I´m just so excited!!!

Something else I´ve learned is that in order for us to find people to teach, we do contacts. We knock doors, talk to people on the street, and whatever. The goal is 140 every week. It´s a lot!! I talked about the importance of numbers before, but numbers mean nothing if they don´t represent true effort or results. If we show up at a door and ask them if they have time to listen to us, 99% of the time they will say no. We have to do meaningful contacts. Preach My Gospel says that when we contact, we need to start teaching right off the bat so they can feel the Spirit, and know how the message will bless their lives.

We´ve seen so many miracles this week. We had an appointment with an investigator that I hadn´t met yet, but when we showed up he needed 15 minutes to drive his girlfriend to work. I suddenly had to go to the bathroom REALLY BAD. We went to a house nearby that Elder Navarrete knew. The daughter of the people there was recently baptized with her partner (they split up to get baptized, and plan on getting married). Apparently the parents hated the missionaries. Anyway, the mother let us in, i went to the bathroom, and we started teaching her. She said it was a miracle because she normally is super sick and can´t get out of bed. She was wondering why she could that day, and said it was because God sent us two "angels" to teach her. The whole thing was a giant miracle!! Unfortunately she didn´t go to church even though she committed to. We´re going to work with her this week.

Another miracle. We had 6 investigators at church this week plus a few other non-members!! 2 of the investigators were brand new this week!! It shows how when we focus on a goal, like having investigators at church, we can do it with the Lord. We were ecstatic. Our prayers, fasting, and hard work finally paid off!! It was awesome. Unfortunately though, some others didn´t go who committed to go. We could have had way more. We´re gonna work hard this week to get them to go. Although he didn´t go, one has read all we´ve left him, and even went exploring lds.org by himself. Elder Navarrete and the district leader Elder Moss did a tour with him when Elder Combe (Elder Moss´s companion and I) were at the conference. He was talking about how he wants to teach when he´s a member. I´m so excited!! We have so much to do. We´re so busy all the time I love it!!

Language is getting way better. I´ve been super blessed with the gift of tongues I feel like. I can understand almost everything, especially in lessons, and can speak a lot better now. I still have tons of work ahead of me, but I´m happy. Elder Navarrete says it´s good because sometimes people take a year to really start their mission when they can really communicate in the language, but I´ve already started me mine. Thanks for your prayers, because Heavenly Father is answering them.

Journal writing is sooo hard because we literally never have time during the day. I´m going to try and catch up today, but with my doctors appointment, who know´s if I´m gonna have time. We´re always so busy!! I wish I had more time to write it cause I actually really like doing it!!

Something else that I´ve learned, is that I love being busy!! I´m completely burnt out every day, but I feel like I´m growing more than ever. It´s the best, even though it´s the hardest thing ever. I want the rest of my life to be like this. I feel like I´m getting molded more and more into a servant of the Lord. I love being a missionary.

I have a little question for you Mum. The members clean our clothes for us, and I´m worried I might be missing some. How many pairs of trousers, what kinds, and how many short and long sleeve shirts did I have from missionary mall? Also my belt is pretty much trashed. Probably cause I´m getting fat, but It´s almost ripped in half. It was junk.

Oh ya one more thing. I have an ingrown toenail so last week went to the médico to talk with a doctor. He gave me some drugs and without even flinching said I needed an operation after looking at my toe for like 10 seconds. I thought he was kidding. It was funny. I also thought he said that he wants to cut off all the red infected part, although he said it in Spanish so I didn´t understand it completely. Hopefully not haha. He wants to do it today and we have an appointment but I think I´m gonna wait a little bit so I can see if it will get any better. We`ll talk to him today. I´ve talked to other Elders who have had problems and they all said to wait a little bit. Tha mission secretary said to pray about it and see. Elder Navarrete gave me a blessing too so I´m not worried. The biggest thing is that I have antibiotics to stop the infection. Who knows though, maybe I´ll get an operation today, we´ll see. Don´t worry though everything´s good.

This week has been the best one yet!! I love being a missionary more and more everyday. This message will change people´s lives and bless them sooo much. It´s true. Joseph Smith was a prophet, and through Him, the Lord restored the true church of Jesus Christ. The Book of Mormon is the word of God. I know it is. Thomas S. Monson is our prophet now, and receives revelation from God. Heavenly Father loves us so much and really does answer our prayers. He wants us to be happy, and through the gospel of Jesus Christ we can be happy. Jesus Christ is our Saviour. He suffered and died for us individually so we could repent and be cleansed from sin. This is the truth, and this is His work. I know it.

¡Chao!

Elder Blomfield