Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Hello Family and Friends!
It is hot. Like, so hot. Like so, so, hot. But I am so excited for this family we are teaching! They accepted the invitation to be baptized this Saturday and so we are going to work hard to help them make it!

Impressions of Mexico!
1) Apparently children here have the perception from a very young age that people with colorful eyes do not see as well as people with dark eyes. Because apparently they see everything with a blue or green tint. :0

2) Normal mayonnaise does not exist in Mexico. It is mayonnaise with lemon juice and it is delightful I might add.

3) We have progressed when it comes to the baptismal font. Now we do not have to fill it by pulling water out of the underground water supply at the chapel. We now have to connect a hose to a tank of water in the roof of the chapel and use said hose to fill it. It is about a two hour process.

4) It is a daily occurrance now. We spend every night running home in pouring rain. On Saturday night a crack of lightning fell really close to our house. :0

5) The slightly intoxicated men in the streets never cease to make me laugh. This past week we were walking to catch the combi to Cuautla and one stopped us in the street and told me that I had been avoiding him because I know that he is the devil. This occurred at 2 in the afternoon.
Two of our investigators Genaro and MarĂ­a were baptized this week in the branch! Their baptismal service was very spiritual. Even more so because the branch was very supportive and is starting to get really excited to participate in missionary work again. It is very fulfilling to go to church every week and see new members and less-actives that we have helped reactivate attending. Elder Lopez and I have really worked hard in this little branch and we are starting to see the fruits of that hard work.

I feel very peaceful and very happy with where I am and with what I am doing. I love my little pueblo and my little branch of members. They are so quirky (the Elders Quorum President, who looks like Charlie Chaplin, comes to church every Sunday in a cowboy hat and passes out fruit during the class), but I love them a lot. I love this family that is going to be baptized. I know that I am exactly where my Heavenly Father would have me be. I am learning how to trust in him completely and letting him work through me to save his sons and daughters. I am finding joy in my service. I feel the Spirit guiding us to people that need our help. I still have so much to learn and so much growth to experience. But I know that through the Atonement that I will grow and I will learn.
I am so grateful for the opportunity I have been given to serve a mission. I know that Christ lives. I know that this life is just a short test for each and every one of us. Trials come and they try us to the very center. But each and every day, if I surrender to my Heavenly Father and his will for me, I find peace and I ultimately grow. I am learning and beginning to understand how much God loves us. And how he, as he says in the scriptures, is continually extending his arm of mercy towards his children and pleading for them to repent and become more like his son. We are lead to these people everyday. If everyone we taught really understood the love that God has for them, this world would change. We would be better. We would be content with what we have (including the trials), and we would do our best to serve and love others.

I will forever be grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ and for the strength I receive everyday from this sacrifice. I love you all very much and hope you have an amazing week.  

Elder Nielsen

P.S. The photographer captured an amazing moment for Elder Lopez.

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