I MISS YOU GUYS!!!! I hope that everything is going super awesome in all of your lives. Life is so sweet and sometimes we don't realize how sweet it is until those moments pass. Live every moment:)
Jackson and Vanessa!!!!! You guys are growing up!!!! WOW! You guys seriously look way older that you did 10 months ago:) That is really awesome that you got to share your testimony in Conference. And your pictures turned out really good.
That is awesome to hear about all that you guys are up too. ALA EVMCO, holiday parties and all:)
Jenna!!!!!!!!!!!!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!!! I know it's not until Saturday...but Happy Early Birthday. You are going to be 18! That is crazy. You guys are all growing up so fast.
Everything that happened last week, I cleared it up. Thank you for all of your advice. I talked to President and apologized to him. I also cleared everything up with the other Elder in my district. He still tries to find things to fight with me about, but like you said mom...in the moment I just agree with him. It is really helping to avoid contention. I am also looking for every opportunity to serve the Elders in my district to earn their love. I am really learning a lot about patience, humility and love. Sometimes...most of the time it's better to be wrong even if you're not. I have seen that really, in most of the moments when I want to say something or correct someone, it is over something that is not even important. By staying silent, or agreeing with them, it avoids contention and strengthens relationships. With a specific Elder, he always tries to find reasons to contend, so I have been focusing on eliminating all the possible reasons that he would want to contend. In this, we are all learning...and becoming more unified as a district. On Monday night I was praying for help to know what to do to unify us more, and a really good idea came to my mind. On Tuesday, in District Class, we did a district inventory. In weekly planning that is something that you do in companionships. You talk about your strengths and weaknesses as a companionships, then you share with your companion what strengths and weaknesses that they have. We did this on a district level, but focusing on the good things.
We all had so many things that we admired about the other Elders. We talked about how in the moments that we want to fight, or are angry one with another, we need to remember these good things. It has helped me a lot. When I get angry with some Elder, I remember these things, and the anger passes, and we avoid conflict. It is awesome.
As for the week...it was super. Our baptism fell through, but that is okay. We are going to keep working with Felipe. Hopefully we can get him ready sooner than later:) He was progressing so well and was ready for his baptism this Saturday, but when the Zone Leaders showed up to do the interview...he didn't want to get baptized. He asked for more time. He is really progressing though. He stopped drinking coffee and is coming to church every Sunday...it's just a matter of time:)
Right now we don't have any baptisms planned for this weekend, but we are going to see if we can get one planned this week. We have several investigators that are super close. We are planning on several lessons this week with the goal of inviting the Spirit and giving these investigators the push that they need to take that step.
We have an investigator named Lorena. She is Marie Estela's sister (one of my converts). She is progressing and is almost ready. We had an awesome lesson the other day about the Plan of Salvation. We talked about eternal families and exaltation. The opportunity that we have to live with our Heavenly Father again. The Spirit was really strong in that lesson. She was crying as we were talking about how she really wants to be with her family for Eternity.
We also taught a really powerful Plan of Salvation to William's mom. She is so close to taking that step of Baptism. She keeps saying that she just needs more time, but she is completing all of the commitments that we leave her, and she comes to church every Sunday. We talked with her about how she feels being separated from her son. She obviously misses him. We talked about how she would feel if she could never see him again. Then we asked how she would feel if she could be with him forever. She really wants to be with her son forever...it was a really Spiritual lesson.
This week Elder Lopez and I started working in the outskirts of our area. We have this little town (Four Streets) called Francisco Madero about 30min from Frontera. We didn't have any money, so we hitch-hiked to the little pueblito. It was really fun trying to get a ride. Elder Lopez didn't want to do it, so he told me that I could get one faster because my eyes change colors. He bothers me all the time with that. Elder...you contact because your eyes change colors...you do it because your eyes change colors. I guess they do. Sometimes they are brown, other times green, and sometimes grey. This day was really hot, and Elder Lopez kept telling me that I looked like a tomato trying to get a ride. I'll attach a picture. After about 10min, I finally got a ride, and it was a car with air-conditioning. This guy was on his way to Villa so he gave us a lift to Madero. He was listening to this talk therapy (''You can do anything'' type talk therapy) so when we got to Madero, we felt like we were going to conquer the world. We had a really nice lesson with a woman named Maria Bertha. She has a family of six, but none else was home. She accepted baptism and is going to invite the rest of her family to our next visit. Elder Lopez is going back tomorrow with one of our Zone Leaders.
Tomorrow I am going into Villa to do divisions with the Zone Leaders. That should be fun to work in another area, but I don't want to leave my area. I love Frontera...but Elder Lopez has all of the plans and I trust in him.
As for studying....I Love Studying everyday. Elder Lopez has a ton of knowledge and he is teaching me a ton. It is so awesome and feels so good to learn about these eternal principles.
Elder Lopez and I are working really well together. He feels like a brother to me. We have such a great time. That is something I have been blessed with in my mission so far. I get along really well with my companions:) He told me that I have a different way of teaching than any other missionary he has met. He told me that I am able to connect with people in a way that he has never seen in his 16 months in the mission. He told me the other day that he can see that I really love the people. It's true...I really love the people here. It's a kind of love that is really special. I feel like I really knew them before and that I was sent to help them learn the Gospel. It is really special for me, and Elder Lopez told me that he is learning to have that same love too. We are learning a ton from one another.
Question....When is Thanksgiving? I have lost track of dates.
Everything is going really well here, and I can feel all of your prayers for me. Thank you all for everything, and know that I am praying for all of you too.
Love Elder Cavenee