28 July 2009

Dog Revenge and Other Interesting Experiences!

So let´s start off with the interesting experiences that happened this week. First of all, I got my revenge on the dog population of Argentina. All those dogs that bit me before now know not to mess with me. We knocked a door of a lady we have taught a couple of times and her six year old son came to the gate. He recognized us and opened the door to let us in but the only problem was that their pit-bull was off his chain and roaming freely about the yard. As soon as the gate was opened he ran out to the street around the corner and pretty soon you hear a bunch of people screaming. So I took off after the owner and Elder Jara followed behind me. When we found the dog, it had another dog, (a boxer), by the throat and was at the point of killing it. So I got down on my knees and took the dog by the neck and tore it off the other dog. So now I have an angry pit-bull in my hands so I grabbed it by the collar and twisted it tight so I had it in a choke hold and it couldn't bite me. Then I dragged it back to the house and tossed it inside the fence. Thankfully, I didn't get hurt and both of the dogs are going to live. It was a crazy experience.

Next, the wind that hit last week was stronger than I realized at the time and it tore roofs off of houses and destroyed a lot of stuff. Some of our investigators were affected. Yesterday we went to do service for a family in our ward and had to shovel dirt and move it around to fill in holes and level out the ground. Good thing I got some good practice with Brother Mcgarry before the mission! I was able to win the contest to see who could fill up the wheelbarrow fastest with dirt.

It got super cold here for a while and I mean super cold. One day it hit 8 degrees below zero Celsius. I’m not sure what that changes to but it was cold. (It is 18 degree Fahrenheit). We did divisions that day and I worked with Elder Lowder. I had a blast; he is a super cool kid.

Oh and I don’t know if I told you, but last P-day we went to the offices for a surprise birthday party for President Northcutt. It was pretty fun.

So transfers are rolling around again in about a week and a half, we´ll see how that works out.
At this point who knows what is going to happen, all the old patterns in the mission for transfers have been broken.

Alright, so now for the investigator update. On Sunday we had five investigators in church which was awesome because all of them have baptismal dates for this weekend or next weekend. Pilar and Maria Jeres are going to be baptized this weekend. Then next will be Gustavo Vilte and Isabel Cayo. And then Gonzalo, the younger guy that we are teaching in another area that needs to get married. He just has to wait for his new marriage date to come around which hopefully is soon.

Two very important things happened to me yesterday. First, we were walking down the street and I saw a man heading towards us and I said to myself, "I’m going to talk to him" and he got closer and closer and closer and as I was about to talk to him my companion said something to me and instead of talking to the man I looked at my comp and the man passed by. "Darn" I thought "I wanted to talk to him." We walked about 10 meters farther and then I hear someone yelling "Muchachos! Muchachos!" I turned after the second yell and I saw the man standing at the corner waving to us. I went to him and he asked if we were the Mormons. I said yes and he asked if we gave classes to the people. I said yes and he looked at me and said in a voice that seemed to be almost at the point of tears, "Could you give me the classes?" Of course I responded yes and we wrote his direction down. After he walked away I felt the feeling of a mix of guilt but at the same time amazement at how the Lord gives us second chances sometimes. The moral of the story is though, what if he hadn't turned around, I never would have talked to him and he may have never had the chance to listen to the message of the restored gospel. What should we learn? Don´t count on second chances. Do what you should do and do it the first time you feel that impression, because second chances are few and far between.

The second experience…. Elder Jara and I were in the street and it was getting dark and while walking to a lesson, I saw a lady walking towards us. I was about to open my mouth to talk to her because I felt that feeling again (this was the same day) when Elder Jara started to talk to her. When he had talked to her, even though she had no interest, I said to him "that’s funny, I felt like we needed to talk to her too." Isn´t it so cool how the Lord does that. It´s like he knows that sometimes we ignore those promptings and his children are so important to him that he has a backup plan. The even cooler thing is that we both had the same feeling in the same exact moment.

Things are going good here, it is crazy, but the Lord definitely takes care of us. I used to say that the mission is hard. But it really isn’t. It is hard if you think of it as something that you have to do, but it becomes easier when you think of it as something you want to do and as soon as you gain a true desire to work and the love for the people. There´s that love for the people that everyone always talks about. I always thought it was so cliché to say that, but it really is so true.
If you don´t love the people then you don’t have anything. One of our investigators, Isabel, said something the other day. She was talking to us about going to church and how people have been telling her she is crazy and all that we always hear. And she said this: "at this point it doesn't matter whether you two (me and my comp) are here, if someone comes by to pick me up for church or any of that. At this point, I’m committed; at this point I am going all the way and never coming back." That hit me hard. The question is the following, are we at that point in our own lives? Are we that dedicated to Christ and to this church that we can say that as well? I hope we all are.

I want you all, each and every one of you to know how much I love you and how grateful I am for the support you give me, your emails, your prayers and your thoughts for me. It really does work miracles. The wife of a good friend of mine in the mission passed away recently and something he said hit me hard and is sort of my new theme. A simple two words. With tears in his eyes he yelled to us all "fuerza chicos!" “Strength boys and girls.” It´ll get us all through this. I love you all. My thoughts are with you.

Elder Jeffrey Rose

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