Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Beginning of Fall

Dear Family

This week... fun stuff! That is so cool that Dad wants to go surfing again! It´ll be fun to go surfing with him. Pool party!! Fun stuff! Sounds like you all had a blast with that. I remember having done that. It was always a lot of fun. Somehow you always have to find fun stuff for the youth.

You know what? In our meeting today (I am in Asuncion for today and tomorrow) we talked about Sister Vero Martinez going on her mission. It so awesome to see how people progress!!! Got to love it.

Good work getting the morning glory... that´s hard stuff! ;).

It sounds like the ward is progressing!! That is awesome! I can´t wait to go back and speak in ALL Spanish... hehehe... :).

Well, we had divisions with the assistants this week. We found a lot of potential investigators so we will see where that all goes. I am super excited to be here in Ciudad del Este. It is one of the hardest areas I have been in to find people who progress to teach, but one of the most rewarding. I really do enjoy being here and teaching the people the Plan of Salvation.

Yesterday was Elder Eddy´s birthday, so that was fun. He gave a really good talk about the Book of Mormon! What we have is SO valuable to the people. We were talking one day, Elder Eddy and I, about what would it be like to not have the gospel knowledge that we have. I wouldn´t have a purpose in life. I´d be lost! Really, I would! What would I have to look forward to? Work, maybe having a family some day, college parties, not so great hobbies that many young adults find themselves in. There wouldn´t be any path to walk! It´s like Alice in Wonderland... if we have no idea where we want to be, it doesn´t matter what road you take. Something like that. I mean, if I didn´t know that God loved me; I would have no motivation to keep the commandments. If I didn´t know if there was life after death, I would feel pointless working so hard to raise a family. If I didn´t know that there are consequences for sins, I would have no reason not to. But this is what I do know. That Christ is our Savior, that He loves us in his infinite mercy and charity. That God is our Heavenly Father, that He desires our Salvation and wants to bless us. That there is a plan in life, that God is Just yet Merciful at the same time. That there is a purpose to my life. That there are so many blessings, temporal and spiritual of keeping the commandments. I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me, and really the fact that I can live with my Heavenly Father again. I love being a missionary, I love being here in Paraguay. It isn´t easy, but what is easy and still worth it? NADA!!

I love you all! I am out of time. Take care of yourselves! A BIG HUG!!

With a lot of love,

Elder David Watson

Friday, September 23, 2011

Great Week!

Dear Family

First off, Mom... I said less than 138... hehehehehe... but I hadn´t taken the time to count exactly... ;). But anyway, it doesn´t look like I will have to count because you are already doing it. I am waiting also to hear the travel plans... as for me and my part, I won´t know until the very last few weeks. You should be receiving as well an email about the official plans. Yo no sé. No idea...

Well, this week was super fun. We had a blast! It was one of our investigator´s birthdays, so we got the members involved and had a little birthday party. It was super `fun and she really liked it. One of our investigators moved to Buenos Aires, but we are still teaching his girlfriend here. She is pretty sincere! We had our part member family come to church again this week, so that was really awesome! She is progressing, and we just need to help her gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon and look towards the temple. What else happened this week? Not much, we are helping our investigators progress, and we are in the process of finding more investigators. Opening up an area is kind of difficult, but worth the pain. Opening up Acahay was a lot easier to find people to teach, but here we are seeing a lot more progression with the investigators. We are really focusing on the Book of Mormon and sharing it with the investigators. I know it is the word of God, and it is another testament of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It has helped me to change my life and it will change the life of anyone who reads it with an open heart.

Surfing? Dad went surfing? I want to surf!!! That´s cool... better learn fast and before I get home because that´s on my to do list. ;). Sorry for the short letter, I really do love you all. I am grateful to be here and learning so much and being able to help the people of Paraguay come closer to our loving Heavenly Father. LOVE YOU ALL!!!

Elder David Watson

Monday, September 12, 2011

We Will Never Forget!

Hey Family

I didn´t forget yesterday either. It wasn´t big here at all... no one mentioned anything about it to us. But we won´t forget, and it is another day to reflect on how great being an American really is and how many blessings we are afforded living there, being the government, schooling, work, life style, anything. It really is a big blessing to live there. It sounds like you had a rather nice week without too much going on, if I read it right. That´s great! I am bummed to hear that the other Elder Watson got a change, but at least he is CLOSER! I like that! Being moved from area to area isn´t fun, but that´s what I will probably be doing in a month. Maybe I will stay here, but I don´t know. I would like to, to a point, but really the Lord`s will is what matters, not mine. So whatever happens happens.

This week was pretty awesome! We had 3 investigators in church this week - progression! We are finding lots of great people and the area is starting to move forward! We have a baptism planned for the 1st, so EXCITED! It´s a 20-year-old young woman with her little brother that came to church yesterday. They loved it, and the members did an awesome job helping them feel welcome. It is such a big difference. We also had another family come to church where the wife is not a member yet, and it put the biggest smile on my face. We have been working with them for a month or so, and seeing them there in church made me so happy. Seeing the dad, the mom, and their two little girls sitting there in Sacrament Meeting just made my day. Like my friend Elder Abe Wilson (he´s in the Toronto Canada mission) said, I never really cared before who came to church as in investigators, to a degree, but now the simple fact that a loved brother or sister came to church just completely makes me happy. IT´S awesome. They are so awesome! She works almost all day, and goes to night school to finish high school, but seeing her face brighten with the gospel of Jesus Christ and her understanding of the plan of Salvation is better than anything else. You can literally see a difference in the faces of the people who want to learn and grow closer to our Father in Heaven. It is awesome!! I love it. We have been working a lot with a couple of less active members and it is amazing seeing the testimonies grow and see them share the blessings they have received in their life with everyone around them. It is jaw dropping to feel the love of our Heavenly Father in my life and to see how it really does affect every aspect of the lives of our investigators and those we teach the restored gospel to. There really is nothing better than feeling the Holy Ghost testify of the truth, and feeling life´s burdens and weight being lifted from our shoulders. There is nothing like receiving an answer from our Father in Heaven that this is the path we need to take, and that what we are learning is the truth. It is amazing to share the gospel with others and feel the Holy Ghost testify of the truths that I have known all of my life and see how those truths shape the lives of the people. The Plan of Salvation really is perfect and there is nothing that could replace it. There is no other way someone can more perfectly describe the purpose of our life here, why things happen, what we are supposed to do with our lives while we are here, and all for what end. The Plan of Salvation fits better than putting puzzles pieces together. There is just nothing that can really replace it. We have a purpose, and God loves us, and he allows to progress, learn, and to become better. Everyone falls, but he who doesn´t fall can´t learn to pick himself back up. And if he doesn´t pick himself up, he can´t feel the exhilaration of being able to run. It´s so true, just take a minute to look at life. God exists, and He has given us a Way to walk. Just take it!

Well, I have got to go. I love you all so much. Take care of yourselves. I´ve got to use these last few precious months to the fullest! I love being a missionary!! :D

Elder David Watson

Monday, September 5, 2011

Ciudad del Este

Hey Family!

Well oh well... what a week!  I am glad to hear that she (Sister Mink) is resting from her pains and troubles. I have seen too many people suffering from illnesses and pains that I can imagine how nice it will be to finally rest from all of our cares and worries in the Spirit World, well, that is if ya go to Paradise. :)

Ray and Erin? Yeah!!! That is so awesome!!!!!!!!!!!! I wish I could have been there to see the smiles on their faces. TOO COOL!

And Sister Vero Martinez!! Muito legal! Eu falou muito poco portugues, quero aprender mais pra falar melhor. Happy day!

News from changes - nothing! I get to stay another change! Woo hoo! I love it here in Ciudad del Este. The ward here is great! There are so many families here that are awesome! The members here have some strong testimonies and it is such a relief to see a ward that functions well here in Paraguay! We are starting to work better with the members and we are finding some great investigators. We are teaching the mom of Javier Melgarejo, who we were able to reactivate and she has made so much progress! It is amazing to see the difference that the gospel is making in her life. She is going through lots of sicknesses and pains, but it is such a joy to see the hope that the Gospel of Jesus Christ gives to people. We are also teaching some nice little families and we are super excited to see their progress. It has been a little hard starting up this area from nothing, but we are starting to see the fruits of our efforts. It is so different working here in Downtown and the areas round about. It is a different lifestyle, but the Gospel is still so important that everyone needs to hear it! There are lots and lots of Middle Easterners, Asians, and Brazilians here, but the diversity makes it fun. Slowly we are finding the less active families and it is so cool to see them start to make changes in their lives. We found a little family here downtown, where the husband is a less active and his wife isn´t a member, but they are awesome! We are going to be working really hard with them to get them to come back to church (she knows a ton about the church and knows the missionaries VERY well) so that she can be baptized. I really enjoy working here with Elder Eddy, we are working in a different manner than I have in my whole mission, but we are seeing better results. He`s helping me a lot to keep progressing and growing. We are super excited to keep working together here in CdE and edify the Church! :)

I am super happy to hear that everything is going great back home. Don`t get into too much trouble... although I believe I would have liked taking apart the laptop too. Hahaha. Tell everyone I say HI and give them a GREAT BIG HUG! I miss you all, but I am so so glad to be a servant of the Lord and preaching the restored Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It saddens me that time is starting to come to an end, but I am going to make to most out of it and bring back some stray sheep to the fold!

Love you tons!!! CHAU!!!!

Elder D. Watson