Monday, February 3, 2014

"Let every action, every word, every thought, be an example to the carnal man in us....."

So I sat and wrote in my journal yesterday and looked back on my first journal entry. It was me, sitting at the airport waiting for my flight out to Salt Lake. Then I realized it was almost a month ago! Crazy! It feels like it was just yesterday that I was rushing trying to pack up! Guess it's true when they say that when you enjoy your mission the time flies!

Speaking of packing, I realized I may have brought a lot of stuff that I don't need haha although I find use for every single thing, it might be bothersome when I get transferred. Oh hhwell. On that note though I continually use my sweaters out here..It's chilly but not coat chilly. So they are a big hit! haha I get compliments everywhere :)

So as for the teaching part of the mission, I feel i've grown so much! I take the lead in most discussions now and have such a greater knowledge of  the scriptures. But I can't take the credit; the gift of the Holy Ghost has manifested so many miracles to me so far and it is mind-boggling! The rate of learning has increased and the ability to discern a person's feelings and needs and to adapt scriptures and gospel principles to their lives just pop into your mind at a moment's notice! Sometimes I leave a lesson and i'm like, I have no idea where that came from. My companion has been really surprised at how far i've come in this short time. I know that it's possible through diligence and obedience. I am striving to be worthy of all the blessings I need to be a successful missionary and I can already see them bearing fruit!

Quick example! We have this 13 yr old boy named David on date for Baptism on the 15th now. Saturday we went over to share a lesson and he had come across some anti-lds commentary. He began shooting out questions like crazy! My companion and I said a prayer and we got to work. The second he finished asking a question, one of us instantly turned to the scriptures for an answer. We must've answered about 30 questions straight before he was satisfied. I felt like Abinadi in the book of Mosiah where he is in jail, and the people questioned him in hopes of confusing him to be able to convict him and Abinadi just answers everything swiftly. It. Was. Awesome!!!

Another story, reagarding the Lord preparing the way for us - we went on splits on Wednesday and Bro. Ohlweiler and I visited an inactive family. We introduced ourselves, I shared  the background of our message and mentioned the importance of baptism. While the parents discussed whether or not they'd like us to come back, their little 9 year old girl, Talleil walks up to them, holding a book of Mormon and says, "Mom, please let them come back...I want to get baptized" Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Moment of the week!!!!! It was so great!

To go along with preparing the way, it came to my knowledge this week that the Price area has a big group of Guatemalans who have refused to get too involved with lessons because of insecurity issues with the people. A sister friend of some of the families mentioned I had just come into the area and that I was Guatemalan and that I wanted to meet with them and they accepted!!!! Oh how great the work is. I know this is where i'm supposed to be, and i'm grateful for having the privilege to teach these people!

On a side note, everything else is great! We attended 4 wards yesterday so I was able to bear my testimony all 4 times. Awesome, huh? I know! P-day is pretty great! We play sports with all of our zone. We played this every man for himself dodgeball and boy was I hurting the next like 3 days! haha but I have been working out every morning now! It helps wake me up for the morning long study session haha. But food is good! Strict diet of cereal and Ramen for breakfast and lunch respectively, and dinner at a member's home every day. We are truly blessed! I am finally getting used to not eating like 8 times a day like back at home haha. Good times!

To end i'd like to share a quick scripture: Romans: 8: 35-39

I love the words used in spanish, but you can read it however you wish.

I'll pause while you look it up because I don't want to write it out...

(Cue Jazz Elevator Music)

anndddddddd we're back :)

Remember, nothing can ever keep us apart from the love of Christ. If we strive to live righteously and do the things our Father in Heaven hath commanded, we may always feel His love and presence in our lives. We are the chosen people in these latter-days to bring up the true church of Christ on Earth. Let every action, every word, every thought, be an example to the carnal man in us and in all those around us of the love we have for this gospel. May you always shine forth the Light of Christ, this I pray, In the beloved name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Les extraño y amo mucho!

Elder Castellanos

{ Elder Esquivel from Chicago,IL }
{ Got to go to ColdStone Creamery }
{ hot brownie with caramel topping }

{ this is HUGE in person. Member killed it himself and framed his prize }
{ View from top of a hill in Price, Utah }
{ Just a members pet pig- she can't move because she's fat }