Monday, October 15, 2012

Good Stuff

Family and Friends,

Elder Dzul's Birthday
Here are some fun pictures from the week. It was Elder Dzul's birthday so I made some plans with some of the members and we all surprised him with cake and sang to him after Ward council. I could tell he was happy and that made me feel good :) We've come a long way in our companionship. I won't go into detail but lets just say that we're very different and both had to make some adjustments to make this companionship work but we now have much more love, trust, and good feelings between us. Haha that sounds a little weird I know, but hey its true! I have learned to be more humble and patient and he has learned to be more obedient and diligent :) Little acts of service for you companion like ironing his shirt, sharing goodies from home (thanks so much for the package family), or shining his shoes goes a long way. 

Elder Dzul and Elder Remington must be hungry!

The other picture is from the baptism of Yolanda (the one with the sunglasses) she doesn't look too thrilled in that particular picture haha but she's a very sweet and humble lady. She was a gift from Heaven because she had already attended church several times and one day her daughter just came up to us and said that her mom wanted to get baptized. So we went and taught her and then baptized her in that same week because she was already way prepared :) It's pretty great when the Lord puts the elect of God in your path and you get to help them be baptized. 

Before my mission my mom, dad, uncle Matt, and several other wise people gave me some very good advice; don't get discouraged. Never let hard times or disappointing things get you down. Although we had a baptism, this week was very tough because Miriam and several other investigadores told us that they don't want us to visit them anymore... it was really tough to take because many of them had been making so much progress and then almost out of nowhere BAM!! When you've been working so hard with these people for so long and you really love them, it hurts to see them turning away from something that you KNOW will bless them and completely change their lives for the better.... but despite any trials or challenges as a missionary you need to always stay positive, always stay smiling, and always have great faith and hope for the future. It's easy to be excited and work hard when things are going great but it takes a real top-notch missionary that is completely dedicated to the Lord to stay smiling, positive, and working hard even when faced with lots of disappointments. That is the key to success really. My parents and uncle Matt couldn't have given me better advice and I repeat their advice to anyone preparing for a mission... never get discouraged. Always stay positive. Always smile. Always be obedient. Always work hard. And always learn from challenging situations. If you do that then you will always enjoy your mission :) The work will be satisfying and fulfilling :)

Oh also quick update, our mission president has now limited our email time significantly because of some disobedient elders :/ Therefore I don't have time to write emails to other family members for right now sorry!! But hopefully he will put the time back to normal soon, if everyone is obedient :) Obedience brings blessings and disobedience brings consequences. 

I absolutely LOVED conference :) Although I watched it in another language I had the most amazing experience this conference that I've ever had in my life. There are 3 reasons I'd like to share that this conference was so great for me. These are great ways to really get the most out of conference.
  1. Get plenty of sleep. As a teenager especially we often stay up late Friday and Saturday night and then although we want to be alert and pay attention its no wonder that we sometimes struggle to stay awake during all the talks. This conference I was alert and learned something important and received revelation personal from every single talk.
  2. Have personal questions before conference. Write down 3-5 questions or problems that you're having (for example one of mine was how to encourage your companion to be obedient without causing contention) something specific and then during conference be thinking of that and you will receive personal revelation of what you need to do. The Holy Ghost will communicate to your heart and mind the specific solution that you need for that specific problem.
  3. Don't write down word for word what they say. Write down the spiritual impressions that you receive while listening with your heart, and having a prayer in your heart to receive inspiration and revelation.
These worked great for me and I encourage all of you to put them into practice for future conferences. 

Holy smokes great news about lowering the age for missionaries! Wow I'm already out of time sorry for the mistakes in this email I was speed writing!

Love you all very much! :) Support your missionaries in your ward :) -  Elder Remington