Friday, July 1, 2011


hello everyone. things here are going well and i am having a lot of great experiences. we had some good times but we also had some trials, especailly with sunday stuff,. sundays always turn into the most stressful time on a mission trying to go by for ppl and praying that investigators come so that they keep their baptismal dates. this week was a little harder. there were only 30 ppl this week, where as two weeks ago there was 60. It ended up going really well though. we had three investigatos that showed up and i was able to give my talk with them there. they let me prepare this time for my talk and i gave it on the book of mormon. i started off saying how all churches are basically the same, and asked the question, what is the difference in our church? i explained a bit of prieshood authority, organization, and ended up talking about the book of mormon. The majority of my talk was quoted from elder hollands talk from conference a few years ago called "security for the soul" it is definitely my favorite talk ever and is very powerful. i added my testimony and explained a little more, and it was very powerful for me and hopefully everyone there. we taught a lot of lessons this week which was good and we are finding a lot of really great new investigators. I feel that my teaching skills are getting better and better and i am starting to really be able to quote scriptures and use them in lessons and also really teach different lessons to each person. sometimes missionaries get into habits of teaching the lessons almost the same for everyone, which is something i saw a lot in salt lake and with my first two companions here. not that they werent great and taught really well, but is something that we always work on.

something sad that happened this week is the roberto started drinking again. the picture of the family i sent last week was maria who got baptized a few weeks ago and roberto who was going to be baptized next week, but now he will have to wait more. He got into a fight with his brother and then started drinking. we went over to try and get rid of what he had and help him stop but he kept going and ended up drinking more becasuse his same brother started inviting him to drink. idk if hes stopped yet. it is usually a few day ordeal. it is hard and the hna maria always gets really discouraged. though it is a story that almost every hermana has here, is that their husband was a drunk, eventually joined and now is a strong member and leader in the branch. hopefully that will be the case.

i had an interesting experience that happend one day after we ate. there is a situation here where a man needs the prophets permission to get baptized, but lately hasnt been completing with what he needs to to receive that permission. we walked out of eating and found half the family crying outside. We started talking and found out that they had been talking with this man and it was a sensitive moment. for probably the first time in my mission i was at a loss of words. i didnt know what to teach, where to go, what to say, nothing. it was strange and not a good feeling. I prayed super hard that i would be guided and just started talking.i was really scared, knowing what i said would probably determine what the family would do in this problem they were having. I learned a lot from this experience. as i spoke i felt guided by the spirit. i was able to find out what they needed. and find some words of peace to help resolve the confict and help them progress. it ended in them making promises to each other and to god.

families are so important in this eternal plan that god has for us. contention of any degree really has great consequences. i have seen the amazing affects that the gospel has on the lives of families that join the church and i have seen the bad affects of ppl that fall away and lose that joy of daily life that god offers us. nothing is more important than unity and peace in the home. reading and praying together, having family nights and helping one another is the way we can have that peace. there was a lot that happened this week that made me think and see the importance of families.


elder smith

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