Monday, February 28, 2011

Out With The Old...

Hola Familia!

You think your week has gone by so fast... Well, so has mine. It’s crazy!

I’m kinda sad to hear that the Malibu is now in the junk yard... but it is a Chevy. What could we want? Hahahaha... just kidding. Anyway, at least life is going good for you all. Life will be crazy as always, but we have to live with it and deal with it. :) Woo hoo!

Well, well, well... this week. We had our zone conference with President Callan, which was pretty COOL. We talked about how to teach better; what prayer is and how using the Book of Mormon will help our investigators understand their role in learning the truth for themselves. We also learned about the Atonement and its role in our life. It was awesome to learn more about the role of Jesus Christ and His sacrifice in our lives. There was a lot of rain in the beginning of the week, but it has finally let up for a few days. We have been focusing on two different parts of our area, but unfortunately each one is about an hour walking distance (some 4 or 5 kilometers) so we have to rotate our days with where we are. Oh! Funny story! We were tracting yesterday and we came up to a house full of guys working, and they invited us in. They asked us if we want to paint, and we said sure! So we taught and painted at the same time... hahaha! The guy who is moving there asked us, Do you know who Joseph Smith is? He is the best! I’ve read his book and everything! Then he told us he liked talking about religion and that his only problem is drinking. He was pretty cool, so we will see where this one goes! :) We had one investigator who came to church this week even though he had an operation on his leg a while back, and it is awesome to see his progress. He said he really liked being at church and that the 3 hours weren’t really that long at all. We are hoping to have a couple of baptisms by the 23rd of March, and if all goes well, we will! :). It is really awesome to see how the Book of Mormon changes people’s lives. Anyone who sincerely reads the book and studies the doctrines and teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, and prays and asks our Heavenly Father to know that it is true will know that it really is the word of God.

Wow... time really flew by on me today. Sorry for the short letter! I really do appreciate all of your love and support! May the Lord bless you!

Elder David Watson

Monday, February 21, 2011

Finishing up February

Hola Familia!

Well, well, well... sounds like you all had a good week! Except for the part about someone hitting your rear end, that is. THANK YOU so much for Papa’s story... I really liked it. Traidores! We going to MAC? I should have known the disease would spread when you bought the iPhones... it must be contagious. But that’s alright. I kind of figure it could possibly be something like the Gospel. I just don’t know how good it is until I try it... hehehe.

I don’t know why but I sort of feel like being goofy today. Not as in clumsy mind you. So forgive me. Haha. This past week was soooooooooooo much better than past weeks. We are finding people who seem like they are going to progress! Admittedly most of them are Seventh Day Adventists, among other Evangelical churches. During the visits that we made with them we taught who our Heavenly Father really is, how much He wants to bless our families so that we can be more united with them and happy. Also, we discussed why prophets make such a big impact in the true Church of God. We have taught what Christ did for us while He lived on the Earth, what happened after His death and resurrection. Finally we taught them about the grand importance of knowing for ourselves why Joseph Smith was a prophet and the Book of Mormon is true through sincere prayer to our Heavenly Father.

Did not Jesus teach in the Gospel of John ‘All that you ask to the Father in My name’ will be done for us? Did He not give us the perfect example of praying to the Father, so that we can learn the form (the steps, not the repetition)? Did not the Apostle Paul teach us that Christ is the only Mediator in between us and the Father? Did not James teach that is through asking God that we can obtain wisdom? These are only examples from the Holy Bible! How many more do we have from the Book of Mormon? Nephi taught that it is of Christ that we preach of, that we rejoice in, that we glorify. Alma taught that it is through prayer and fasting that we obtain a testimony of the truth through the Holy Ghost. Alma also taught what IS faith, just like Paul does to the Hebrews, but also HOW we can grow our faith. Helaman teaches us how we can become pure in heart. Jesus Christ in all of His glory taught the Native Americans after His resurrection. Did not Moroni give us the ultimate promise of being able to read and mediate about the Book of Mormon, and after ask God with all the sincerity of our hearts? How could we not be Christians? How can we not worship the only True and Living God the Father in the name of His Only Begotten Son, Jesus the Christ? Prophets are prophets - to listen to them is to listen to the counsels of God. But I testify that it is to God the Father whom we worship, in no other name than that of Jesus Christ, our perfect Savior and Redeemer who was sent to the Earth to give us the perfect of example of HOW we should live. We CANNOT just say that we believe, and then automatically be saved in the Kingdom of God. As Nephi teaches, we are saved by grace AFTER having done all we can. What can we do? Have faith in Jesus Christ, exercise it in prayer, reading the scriptures, going to Church. We need to repent of our sins and never going back to commit them. We need to be baptized in the form and with the same degree of consciousness as our Savior, by someone holding the Holy Priesthood. We make a promise to God to follow His commandments, a promise that no one else can make for us. Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost to be our companion as long as we are righteously living, striving to be like our Savior until the end of our lives. I testify of this with all of my heart, might, mind and strength, declaring unto all that I KNOW that these concepts are true because the Holy Spirit Himself testified unto my spirit that indeed these things are the truth. What more can I do than declare my testimony, my knowledge of the truth, and then invite all to come unto Christ?

I love the fact that once we realize that we can ask God for the truth, it doesn’t really matter what other people say about being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Who knows better - our Heavenly Father or someone who is trying to tear down another’s beliefs? What is more Christ-like? Inviting others to know for themselves or arguing the points of why another church is wrong? Pointing out things that are different or declaring what we know to be true from the manifestations of the Holy Ghost? Should we look to man’s understanding of other religions in a book or should we go to the source of all truth and knowledge? There are two paths in this world, one that looks quite tempting and easy, or the path that leads to Eternal Life. How can we know? Trying asking God for yourself!

I love you all! Keeping working hard! Keep growing stronger in the faith of our Lord and Savior! Take care of yourselves! Saludos a TODOS! LES QUIERO!! CHAU!

Elder David E. Watson

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Hola Familia!

How are you? It sounds like life is going pretty good. I hope that Dad is feeling better already... it is never fun to be sick. It is so weird to think that it is starting to warm up there and that summer is slowly coming to an end. I love being here in Paraguay!

The mission work is going good! We are finding many people who want to hear the word of God. I don’t have any amazing stories or anything... just lots of small things everyday that we do to help the people progress and know the truth for themselves.

There is a less active man who came back to church with his wife (who is not a member), by themselves, and she absolutely loved being at church. We didn’t have much time to talk with her, but the members were excited to see her there with her husband and being excited about being at church. We are pretty excited to go visit with them and get her ready to be baptized, hopefully soon! Also, some of the members just told us that they know some friends that were preparing to be baptized, something happened but that they were still interested. So we are excited to see the work progress and hopeful we are going to have a baptism soon!

There is also a Paraguayan thing that is called ‘Carnaval’ where everyone throws water balloons at each other and spray can foam. Even the adults get in on it... I was so surprised to see a older woman chuck a water balloon at a passing motorcycle. Luckily, we haven’t been made targets, except in the houses of members. So it’s not so bad.

Well... that’s my news. We are just chugging along. I hope that life is going pretty well over there! Keep your spirits up and keeping on doing the right thing every day. It is never late to make changes in our lives to keep the commandments like praying, reading the scriptures, or going to church. He just wants us to start now and never look back. He’s willing to help us do that, if we do our part. And it all starts with a little step. By the way, the Book of Mormon is a huge help. Not kidding. :)

Love you all! Take care of yourselves!


Elder Watson

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Still in Encarnacion!

Hola Familia!

That’s great to hear that there was a baptism in the Fillmore ward! I bet the missionaries are super excited! That is so amazing!!! I hope that she feels welcome to the ward and her husband will feel the Spirit in church and in the lessons! :) Woo hoo! That is so cool to hear about all the missionaries that will be serving from the ward too. Too cool!

Changes weren’t very exciting here. We stayed! Our whole district stayed too. We have started to work in another area where we have never been before, and we are finding a lot of people who are listening, so I am excited to see the progress that we have been struggling to have in this part. The branch is starting to focus on home teaching and visiting teaching, which will help us out a ton!

There has been a TON of rain here… which is really weird for the summer. I have a picture of my boots filled with water… it’s kind of funny. There shouldn’t be too much rain during this time of year, but, this year it’s just different. We have come home soaked to the bone like four times in the past two weeks… it’s pretty interesting. At least it’s not really super hot! I also was able to get a picture with my trainer and his current companion that he is training.  My trainer goes home in three weeks – wow how time flies!

Well, that’s about all I’ve got for this week. I hope everything is going really, really, really well for everyone! Take care of yourselves! Éxito en todo! Les QUIERO!


Elder David Watson