Thursday, October 10, 2013

Conference #3

Hey family!

It’s good to hear you guys had a good weekend and got to see Hermana Iza! Don’t worry about the dictionary I will find one here. Hope everyone is doing good in school and work. I haven’t heard from the kids in a while...

Well I loved conference. Time is flying by; I can’t believe I only have one left in the mission. I hope to be able to apply lots of things that I learned, to me and my teaching. We were able to do that yesterday. They talked a lot about families, our gender, and passing through trials. I particularly liked the talks by Elder Scott and President Monson on trials and the atonement.

Well I don’t have a lot of things to say about this week. But I do want to share an experience we had yesterday. We are teaching a man named Pedro and he is rather old and has a lot of problems in his life. He left his family to live with his current girlfriend I guess you could say. He feels bad about that decision, but he says he wants to be with this person. And they have a kid together as well. He is old enough that he can’t do much as far as work or even reading goes. His girlfriend or wife as he calls her suffered an accident and has to be helped out of bed, her vision was damaged and she can’t read or work either. They have one kid together, and the wife has a 16 year old girl. They don’t have money and are at the point of being kicked out of their apartment for not paying the rent. Basically his life is really, really hard. And he feels like he is not loved by anyone. His kids do not act like they love him even if they do. His wife is too worried about her own health and problems she has. He feels really alone, and is kind of mad at the world. Yesterday we found him alone in his house. We started to teach a little, but he really didn’t want to listen. He is just depressed and it seemed like he didn’t want help. In the middle of the lesson my comp realized this and remembered something from the conference. He then stood up and said I want to give you a hug. Pedro then stood up and they embraced for about 30 seconds. I was put to tears; it had to have been one of the most special moments of my mission. A million lessons on love couldn’t have taught me what my comp taught me in that moment. What that man needed was a hug; he needed to know by action that someone loved him. We had told him, but my comp showed him. I then proceeded to stand up and give him a hug. We didn’t take away any of his problems, but I am absolutely sure his life was better when we left. That he felt just a little uplifted and loved and like everything would be okay. I learned a lot in that moment. And my comp followed the impression of the Spirit that was the most important part. The Spirit told him what he really needed.

We had another experience with following the Spirit this week as well. We went to visit one of our investigators and she was there but hid from us and I was kind of bummed or mad. But we were walking and I felt like I really wanted to go see one of the families that supports us a lot. We didn’t have them planned so my comp thought it was weird but we went. We got there and sat down and talked to the sister and her son. She was upset and kind of vented to us, but then indirectly said things, she said she was talking about someone else but she was talking about herself. Then we shared a scripture. I had one come into my mind that we don’t use a lot. We got done and she almost started crying and said that was exactly what she needed. She told us not 5 minutes before she had been praying that God would help her and she was really upset. And then we knocked on her door. It was a really special experience as well. I learned a little about how the Spirit works. I didn’t know that was an impression to go visit her. The thought just popped into my head. But it was also something I wanted to do, I was kind of bummed that our investigator didn’t answer and I wanted to go see that family cause I knew that they always accept us. But I realized after that that was the Spirit telling me I needed to go see that family. I had been able to recognize impressions as thoughts that come into our minds before, but that is one of the first ones I have recognized as a feeling.

Well that’s about it. I challenge you guys to take one talk from the conference and really study it, and more than anything apply in your lives. You will see miracles and feel God’s love for you. 

I love you all and miss your all

Elder Utley

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Letter 9/30/13

Hey family!

Hope everyone had a great week! I’m glad Coop is feeling better. Sounds like mom really enjoyed the talk from the seminary teacher, I enjoyed her notes. I really miss seminary and institute. I didn’t ever realize how cool it was in Utah until I got here and seminary is in one of the member’s houses and it’s just an ordinary member that teaches it, and they just read out of their manual for an hour. And in Utah the teachers are awesome, they study a lot to be able to teach, and consequently know a ton! And it is during school not at 5 in the morning. And we never read out of the seminary manual, I didn’t even know it existed to be honest.

I’m glad dad had a good birthday, even though he was a little sick. And that he got to go fishing with Randy. I am looking forward to going fishing again when I get home. Dad your picture didn’t come through this week (last week it did) so if you could send it again that would be awesome.

So this week okay. My comp got the flu I think, or a really bad cold, and after a few days he passed it to me. So we were kind of sick the whole week, we ended up resting 2 morning, and two other morning we had meetings, and Saturday we helped the sister missionaries with their baptism so we ended up working about half day every day, which was a bummer. The good news is that I feel better and my comp still feels a little sick but a lot better. And we are ready to work hard this week. He even said he would go running with me, I guess that’s the benefit of having a comp that is about to go home, he starts caring when he looks like and wants to do exercise. He says he has gained 10 kilos or like 20 ish pounds in the mission.
In spite of all the things we had this week it was still pretty good. We contacted a reference that is really interested and her daughter as well. Her son is actually a member and lives in our area but goes to a different ward, and he gave us the reference. I hope we can work with them and get them into the church as well.

We also had a ward activity that went really well, we had some investigators go and got another reference and we have an appointment with her tomorrow. It’s actually the friend of the sister you guys are going to meet.

And the sisters had a baptism, they were supposed to have 2 but one fell through. And the one that fell through was the one I was going to baptize. But I think next week or the next they will have it. And the one they had, her dad was going to baptize her but he works on call, I guess you could say, so he got called into work and the day of they called me and asked me to do the ordnance because she didn’t want to wait to get baptized. It was a really good experience. She and her family are actually the first people I taught in Celaya, before the sister missionaries got here. And the spirit was really strong. They were really nice after and thanked me a lot, they said when the dad couldn’t do it I was the first person they thought of.

This week we talked a lot about seeing people and what they can become, and looking for the good in people. I think a lot of times people, especially family, looks at all the faults in everyone and forgets to look at the good things in them, and see them for who they really are.

One of the people we taught gave me an example that I really liked. He said that a lot of the time we are like a brand new white shirt, it looks really nice and we are excited to wear it, we look good in it. But we put it on and spill one drop of coffee on the shirt. He said the whole day instead of people noticing how nice the shirt is they are going to notice that one little stain and focus on it. Lots of time we judge people like that, they have so many good qualities, but we take one little mistake and focus on it and can’t let it go. So instead of seeing people for their faults, let’s see them for their strengths.

I love and miss you all

Elder Utley