Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Hey Family!

How's everyone doing this week? This week has been pretty crazy. We've had some really rough times in the streets this week and it's become aparent to me that the adversary is working really hard in our area right now. I'm sure that's for a reason. I have a feeling there are some families hidden somewhere around here that are really ready for the gospel. Anyway. This week has been interesting because we had pretty much zero success the whole week up until yesterday after church. A seventy came to our mission to talk with all the zone leaders about how we need to change our outlook on the work, so we had a special meeting on saturday with the zone to discuss the things we need to change. The general authority explained to our zone leaders that we as missionaries are here to find the people who are ready for the gospel. In section 4 of Doctrine and Covenants it says the field is white, so there's no need to waste time planting seeds when we can be harvesting! Things that prepare people for the gospel are the Spirit, experiences in their lives, and their own decisions. We learned that if the people aren't ready for the gospel yet, we need to leave the preparing to them to the Lord, and get out of the way so they can progress in His hands, not ours. We still serve and share with everyone we talk to of coarse but our little meeting really opened our eyes. We've had to drop alot of investigators that really just aren't ready for baptism yet, and we've had to do alot of searching for new people! Saturday we started out in the streets just contacting people in the street. We were in an area we've worked alot in lately and our efforts seemed very fruitless. We even went to go invite a less active family to the family night activity at the church but they've gone back to being evangelists. Not that I have anything at all against evangelists, it was just a little discouraging to hear even our members are starting to not want to listen to us. In church on Sunday we had a record low in attendance. we arrived at the house just wondering why things are so hard right now. We decided to pray about what part of our area we could focus on with the new outlook the seventy gave us, to try to find new investigators. We prayed and decided on an area together. I also prayed and told the Lord that we finally recognize that our own efforts are getting us nowhere, and that we're turning it all over to Him since that's the way it should have been all along anyway. I also said that I wasn't planning on coming home until we taught at least two new people a full lesson that are ready for the gospel. Anyway, we headed out to look for new investigators. We arrived to the street we chose to find that even though it was in a more humble area, this particular street has alot of really wealthy people on it. I was a little nervous that we might not have been in the right place, since the wealthier people are usually less likely to listen. But we decided to be faithful and started knocking on doors. After about three hours of knocking we were happy to have planned about five appointments with families that really seem ready for the gospel. We didn't have much time left in the day, and we hadn't contacted our two hundred people for the week still. We had to make a choice to continue in the street where we were at, or go up to a plaza where we could quickly contact a large number of people to reach the two hundred goal. We both felt like we'd have more success if we continued knocking doors, but a rule is a rule! I called one of the zone leaders (my old companion Elder Moberg actually) to ask his advice. He let us know that we should never make any excuses to not complete with what the Mission President has asked, but that the spirit knew what we should do. He said that we should do whichever would bring about the best results for the people in our area, and that the Savior would be proud. Well we thought for a second, and remembered that we had already found alot more people than we had found in the entire two hundred contacts from last week. We both felt pretty strongly that we needed to continue knocking on doors. We kept going for a little and found another family who wants us to begin teaching them, but we didn't teach them right then because they were eating and at a birthday party. About then I remembered that we still hadn't taught anyone, and I had already told Heavenly Father that I didn't want to go back home until we taught at least two people who are ready for the gospel. We didn't have much time left, so I said a little private prayer for some extra help on our last contacts. At the next house we got to there were some girls leaving for catholic mass, which isn't usually the best sign, but we decided to talk to the mother and their brother anyway. The mother let us know she didn't believe there was anything after death in this life. We ended up teaching her and her son about the plan of salvation, and it went well. The spirit was present in their house, and they want us to start teaching them more about the gospel. We ended up getting home with seven new investigators that all seem to be ready for the gospel. It was a rough week and alot of patience and hard work, but I'm very thankful for the experience, and the opportunities our new investigators have in the near future.
Thanks everyone for your dear elders and letters! I love hearing about everyone it's a blast! I wish I had more time to write you all back but it's tough to fit it into the schedule. Thanks for all your support.
Bam- I got your other package with the cds! thanks bam! I love the snacks and I'm loving the cheerios as well. By the way I got your dear elder about the dried mangos thing and I actually love those dried mangoes and they're great for a quick snack and to take with while we're working. Thanks for keeping me updated on the fam. It sounds like you all had a good time with the graduations and stuff while grandma Joyce was in town. I love you Bam.
Gram- Thanks for that story in the dear elder about the missionary from Peru! That's an awesome conversion story and it sounds like it's really changed that missionary's life. You'll have to let me know as soon as Zach gets his call by the way! Thanks for your letters and your support Gram. I love you.
Mom- I got your letter from 'my day!' That was an awesome letter mom, I loved thinking back on all the great memories from those times. Thanks for your dear elders also! I was a little bummed to hear about Tina and all, that will be hard for the kids. Anyway, I've thought a bit about the old house too. It really was the greatest place on earth. I bet we'll be right back with our family in our home again feeling just like we use to someday in the future, because I'm pretty sure the Lord knows how much it means to our fam, and he's been preparing a place for us to be after this life! Thanks for all your love and support mom. About the package I actually could use more contacts in a couple months so if you're able to get those that'd be great! if know i have my glasses which is fine. I love you Mom.
Dad- That is so sweet about the U!!! I am stoked! By the time I get home we're going to have some sweet schedules and matchups going on! I can't wait! And the larger stadium will be awesome! Anyway, I'll make sure not to think too much about that and stay focussed on the work. About the Joseph Smith talk I feel the same way. There's so much stuff you can share about him, I would definitely include some strong testimony of the first vision and restoration of the priesthood. I bet it'll be a sweet talk. As far as the card I still haven't checked it! We'll leave a little early to start working so I can swing by the internet place by our house to let you know really fast. Oh and happy late fathers day! Love you dad.
Nay- That's hilarious about soccer! haha. Sorry i bet it's pretty tough to have a new coach again but it's pretty funny that story about how it happened with ashley! haha. Anyway. That's sweet that you're cooking a ton now! I wish I would have done that a little more. I'd offer you suggestions but I'm so hooked on tacos right now I can't even think of anything else. Anyway. Thanks for the e mail Nay. I love you!
Dig- Thanks for the story about the steaks! Sounds like it was a sweet fathers day. Thanks for your letters and all diggy o. I love you!
Den- That's sweet about golf! We'll definitely have to play when I get home. You'll probably win. I'll keep thinking of what you should ask for for your b day and let you know next week! Love you leonard!
Shash- I'm kind of jealous of your rope swing! I wish I had something like that! Oh well, haha. Thanks for your letters! I love you sloosh.
Love you all!
Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar

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