Monday, June 30, 2014

Hello Family and Friends!

So...I just noticed yesterday that the streets in Acapulco don't have rain-gutters like the streets in the United States do. So...when it rains...all the water that falls on top of the hill just sort of floods down in large rivers in the streets. Yesterday was the first time that I had walked in rain water up to my ankles. When it rains pours. And it comes on really suddenly as well. Like...without warning. You'll just be walking around and the sky is completely blue and it's super hot outside. You'll go inside the house of someone to teach them, walk out in thirty minutes and then it slowly starts to sprinkle. Then 5 seconds later it just starts pouring. I love Acapulco!

Impressions of Mexico!

1) This week we were walking down the staircase of 134 stairs that leads to our house in the morning and a man was sitting there and called us over. He said that he needed some bloodwork done and wanted either I or my companion to inject him and take the blood out. HELLO PEOPLE.

2) Mexico was literally in mourning yesterday because they lost their game in the World Cup. Everyone just walked around looking really defeated and it was dark and cloudy outside and raining. The World Cup craziness is now offically over.

My companion and I had a really big miracle happen in our area this week. Since the beginning of the week we had been praying to find a family to teach. Saturday night, as we were walking back to our apartment a lady shouted, "Good afternoon!" from her door. We stopped to talk with her and began to teach her a little in her doorway. After my companion invited her to attend church and explained where the chapel is she told us that she has a friend (that happens to live in our area) that always passes by our chapel and that has always wanted to go in but never has because she always sees that the people that go in on Sundays are dressed-up really nice. She gave us the telephone number of her friend whose name is MarĂ­a. I was able to call her that same night during our planning session and invited her to attend church the next day. She was super sweet over the phone and said that she would attend. The next day, she arrived at sacrament meeting with her husband Gabriel. They stayed for two hours and said that they really enjoyed the services. As they were leaving she told my companion that she wants to invite her three children next Sunday. My companion asked her how old they are and she said 14, 13, and 9. It was such a sweet experience. And such a testimony to me of how God answers our prayers. I'm so excited for them. They seem like such a sweet family.

It doesn't really feel like I'm about to finish my mission. It really hasn't hit me yet. Everytime it does though I get a little emotional. I'm so grateful for this experience that God has given me. It's been the greatest experience of my life. I think that the overarching lesson that I've learned during my mission is that we are abundantly blessed and prosper when we put God and Christ first. Above everything else. When my relationship with them and with the Spirit is more important to me than anything else, then I truly am happy and I have peace. When I strive to do those things that will strengthen my relationship with them, in both the good and bad times, then I will always prosper. I know that I need them every single day.

I love my Savior. I know that Christ lives. It is my hope that each and every one of us will one day be able to stand before him. Tried. Proven. Clean. And pure. Obedient and faithful. Everything that I've seen and experienced during my mission has lead me to conclude that that is my ultimate goal. That is what I want in my life. It's such a beautiful thing to see God's hand in your life and in the lives of others. It's so beautiful to serve and see changes both in yourself and in others. I love my Heavenly Father. I love the Mexican people. And I love my mission.

I love you all very much.

Elder Nielsen

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