Monday, September 19, 2016

September 19, 2016

Thank you mom. I like your analogy of the laws. I think after all is said and done it’s funny that the first and great commandment is to love God with all thy heart and mind and soul.. To truly fulfill all the commandments we need to be consecrated. 

I’ve had a lot to be grateful for these last few months. I feel like the lord is blessing me for my efforts the first 16 months of my mission. I’ve been able to help a lot of my brothers and sisters in this area. I love them all and feel like I would do anything for them. After baptizing them you feel something very special. I imagine it’s similar to what you feel when you have a child. After so much work and struggle you see the happiness of another being and you are full of joy! 

So 3 weeks ago we asked our recent convert Elisabeth to participate in nunca voy solo and to fill out a list of people she thought were ready to hear our message and then pray to ask the Lord who we should visit. She did and brought us to her friends house. The granddaughter Jocelyn started listening and has come with us to church every Sunday. When we showed up the first time and gave the baptismal invitation Jocelyn ran to her room and brought out a book that the evangelical church gave her that said '''preparation for baptism.” She said, ”I want to be baptized and have been working on my own to do it in the church down the street.” After the first Sunday she came with us she went home and told her grandma.. ''Grandma I’m changing churches.''  Then our next visit she said she had read the pamphlet we left and prayed and felt she needed to be baptized! Her date is 24th of September. 


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Sept 12, 2016

Whooohooohohohohohoh.... I knew that I wasn't going home 3 days after Christmas that would be so dumb. :) Wow, thats like sooo close. Are you still coming down then or should we wait? I love you so much! I don't have time to write much today, but I love you like crazy and miss you. OH, and Flavio Canel got baptized this week! I love the old guy so much. This week I put my arm around him and asked if he was ready to be baptized. He said I'm ready, I feel at peace. I told him that he was about to enter into a big family and that we would all be here to support him through everything, and that he should never feel bad to ask us for help. (We knew before hand he had been passing tons of trials.) He started to cry and said thank you. He told me and my companion that his family and friends had all rejected him when he became a drunk years before. Then he tried to change his life around and go to the evangelical church. He stopped drinking, but his family still wouldn't talk to him because they were Catholics. He said he was so thankful that his cousin, a member of the church, came and visited him and invited him to church. He said he feels loved and accepted and has felt the spirit in the lessons, he knows he is in the place God wants him to be. :) As I entered into the font and and lifted my hand to the square it was so hard to fight back the tears. The spirit I felt was so strong. I could feel the gratefulness that he had for us and it filled me with immense joy!"
Sept 5, 2016

Sounds like obedience has brought you blessings too mom! :) This week was fantastic. We went to a mission council last Friday (a meeting for zone leaders to discuss ideas and review numbers.) The president looked at the numbers projected on the wall for like 2 minutes without saying anything. Then looked at me and my companion and said, “What is going on zone nimajuyu? The most wicked zone is the zona flechona (the most obedient and straight.)” 

The zone is throwing fire and seeing numbers that it hasn't ever seen. Just a cool fact, last year there were an average of over 200 missionaries in our mission. Every month we baptized an average of 50 people as a mission. This year we had 170 and lost 20 to disobedience. This week we lost two more. We have less than 150 and we are baptizing an average of  100 every month as a mission. 

When we are obedient we have the spirit. When we have the spirit we want to be here, we want to teach, we want to baptize, we are happy. For the disobedience of two missionaries in a zone, all other missionaries are affected. Our district meetings and zone meetings are ruined because the spirit is not felt. As a missionary these meetings are spiritual reboosters that get us through the week. In the end we are affected, our companionships are affected, and our investigators are affected. We do not convince the people, the spirit does. We do not change people, the spirit does. If you want to be successful then you must learn the first principle to the gospel. :)

This week I have been studying a lot about the atonement. When I reread Lehi’s vision of the tree of life, the spirit taught me a very important lesson. The tree of life represents the love of God, when we partake of its fruit we are tasting the love of God and are filled with immense joy. Or in other words, we are filled with the spirit because He brings us this feeling (Galations 2:22) How do we receive the spirit? We use the atonement to clean purify ourselves, through faith, repentance, and baptism or the sacrament. As a result we are desirous to keep eating and share with others.
11 And it came to pass that I did go forth and partake ofthe fruit thereof; and I beheld that it was most sweet,above all that I ever before tasted. Yea, and I beheld thatthe fruit thereof was white, to exceed all the whiteness thatI had ever seen.
 12 And as I partook of the fruit thereof it filled my soulwith exceedingly great joy; wherefore, I began to bedesirous that my family should partake of it also; for I knew that it was desirable above all other fruit.
When we truly are partaking of this fruit we feel the spirit often, we are happy despite affliction and trial, we are desirous to share it. Please share the gospel with someone this week, pass by and visit someone, present yourself, present the gospel, present the missionaries, preach. Participate in never go alone, because its the doctrine of Christ.
For those who have fallen away, who doubt, who don’t feel the joy of the gospel ponder upon these scriptures:
 33 And great was the multitude that did enter into that strange building. And after they did enter into that building they did point the finger of scorn at me and those that were partaking of the fruit also; but we heeded them not.’
34 These are the words of my father: For as many as heeded them, had fallen away.

I know that my Savior and Redeemer is Jesus Christ. I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I know Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. 
August 29, 2016

Thanks mom! That’s awesome that donavan is back! Give him a big hug for me please! I’m glad the girls are doing good too. Don't worry I’m sure the Lord will find me a wife.. I hope it’s not too hard to find one that loves the Lord more than anything else. Keep an eye open! :) 

This week we baptized Jessica Lemus and Abigail Barbero. Jesica is a reference from our recent convert Sharon Cruz that has been participating in Nunca Voy Solo. Jesica has struggled to know if Joseph Smith was a prophet, but has been coming to church non stop for about 3 months. We decided to stop visiting her because she hadn’t been reading the Book of Mormon. Last Sunday I asked her if she had been reading the Book of Mormon. She said yes with a big smile. I asked when she was going to be baptized. The 28th she said. The 28th of what month? August she replied! I’m ready! It was really awesome. She thanked me for being patient and continuing to invite her to church every Sunday and that she had felt it was all true. :)

Abigail has been coming to church with her older sister for about a year. She is 12 and has wanted so badly to get baptized but because of her age hasn't been able to. As a rule of our mission only 14 years and older if parents aren't members can be baptized. We helped her read and understand every chapter between 3 nephi 11 - 18 and had her write a paper over all she had learned. Then sent it to the president asking for permission for her to be baptized. He was very impressed and gave her permission.

This month we have a few baptisms planed too.  :) We did a missionary activity as a ward about a month ago and had them invite non members. The family Canel invited their uncle who loved the activity. He asked after how he could join the church. They presented us to him and we have taught all the lessons as of last week. He comes to church every week and helps out in all the activities like he is a member :) I love him to death. He is like 55 years old.

We are also teaching Dulce. She recently moved in with her mom, Olympia, our recent convert. She is aunt-sister of Andrea the little girl that we baptized.. It’s a really weird story, but the grandma of Andrea (olympia) is the mom of Dulce, but have have the same dad..... Dulce got pregnant at 18 and moved out with her boyfriend. Recently Olympia did a fast that her daughter would have a change of life style and would come home. 2 days later she did haha... she has been listening to us and likes the church, but still needs to feel the power of the Book of Mormon.

We also are teaching Esperanza. She is our contact, and an interesting one too. We were contacting some apartments a few weeks ago but after 3 hours of no luck, so we decided to say a prayer that the Lord would guide us to where he needed us most. We felt that we needed to go to some apartments half a mile away and went. We contacted Esperanza that rejected us right off the bat and said that she had already heard the missionaries and went to church but didn't like it at all. After a few minuets of talking with her she said thank you and we left. We kept contacting there, but didn't have success there either so I was a little disappointed because I thought the Lord needed us there.

Later in the day we went to some contacts that we had made in the first set of apartments. We knocked and Esperanza opened... Turns out  earlier that day she was babysitting for her friend and it wasn't her house we knocked and we had put an appointment with her son at her real home. She was like well I can’t seem to escape from you guys come in :) We had a very spiritual lesson over the Book of Mormon and at the end she grabbed it from me and said she would read it. The next visit I asked her what her favorite bible story was. She said job because it teaches her that to be grateful and not complain. We shared an awesome lesson about Nephi and how his story teaches us the same thing. She was satisfied at the end. She confessed to us later that her husband is a Jehovah Witness and that he hates Mormons. She doesn't like Jehovah Witness though and has been praying that God would send her the truth and help her to unify her family more. She said that after the first time we contacted her she felt bad for not listening to us and said to herself if they pass by again I’ll let them in haha.. I’m sure the Lord led us to her! :)

Mom and dad I love you so much and miss you a lot. Please don't stress out about coming here if it isn't going to be easy. I would be just as happy coming home and watching videos and eating peanut butter and waffles with my family. If it easy to come down here it would be fun to show you the country but it’s not a priority for me haha... I’ll probably come down alone in about a year with my wife to visit.

August 22, 2016

Wow looks like you guys had fun :) I hope all goes okay with the house in Texas. I’m glad you followed the spirit dad! :) Josh looks just like gramps hehe;)

This week was awesome. We baptized again! :) The activity Nunca Voy Solo has been giving a lot of fruits :D I’ll send a pic. his name is David Garcia. His mom brought him to one of our activities and he saw a baptism we had to and decided he didn't want to go to the evangelical church anymore, better to be mormon hehe:) pilas. My comp and I have been teaching a ton of people that are about ready for baptism :) All of them are references from nunca voy solo. :)  If all goes well this week, I’m going to be super happy! hehe But I don't want to jinx myself again so I wont give details :)

I love you guys. 


Elder Dabel

July 25, 2016

This week was fantastic:) I constantly feel that we just aren't given enough time to work. Before I know it the day is gone and a week has past :( I feel good with my companion and in my area. We baptized Andrea this week. 11 years old, although young, is one of the most pilas (smartest) I’ve ever baptized. You would be proud to see her Book of Mormon marked like crazy. After the baptism she asked us for a few minuets to give her testimony, she is an inspiring young women.

This week the president sent home 8 more missionaries home. Apparently the two I sent home ratted out there friends. Our mission is getting smaller and smaller. The funny thing is that we are baptizing more then we ever have. It’s funny how big of a difference obedience makes in the mission. The president told us that we could be great members and bad missionaries. It’s sad but true. Please support your missionaries in their obedience!!

I really really like this quote of Jeffrey R Holland:  

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said, (April 2016) "When there was a controversy in the early Church regarding who was entitled to heaven’s blessings and who wasn’t, the Lord declared to the Prophet Joseph Smith, “Verily I say unto you, [the gifts of God] are given for the benefit of those who love me and keep … my commandments, and [for them] that seeketh so to do.” Boy, aren’t we all thankful for that added provision “and … seeketh so to do”! That has been a lifesaver because sometimes that is all we can offer! We take some solace in the fact that if God were to reward only the perfectly faithful, He wouldn’t have much of a distribution list. Please remember tomorrow, and all the days after that, that the Lord blesses those who want to improve, who accept the need for commandments and try to keep them, who cherish Christlike virtues and strive to the best of their ability to acquire them."