Vina Del Mar, Chile

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Week 96: Whistle while you work

Buenos Dias a Todos!

This was an interesting week! We had a lot of busy work to do so we didn't have much time to work but we did what we could. But at least I had my weights and could start lifting a little bit.

This week we had conferences with President. I really liked it because his wife gave a really good presentation which is exactly what I needed. My whole mission I have been really really really hard on myself. I can not explain how hard on myself I have been. By being hard on myself I give it all and I work hard and see many miracles, but it also is difficult for me if I do everything right and things don't go right. She talked about 10 steps to have higher resilience. Basically I decided that I was doing exactly what she said but I was being sad during the process. It really affected me and has helped to to Trust more in the lord and to do my part. To put it in practice this week I contacted as much as I could and talked to everyone and if somebody was mean I didn't care and just kept on contacting. It made me a lot happier and made me trust in God a lot more.

This week We had to clean out a pension and turn it in. Nothing too new but it was fun because I got to spend a lot of time with a senior missionary and he is hilarious! He is such a bro it was a blast talking to him and working with him. I talked to him and I would love to finish my mission being assistant to him to help him shut down the apartments and take care of the pensions and to do stuff like that. I don't think it will happen but It would be pretty sick :)

This week we only taught 1 lesson to an investigator and he didnt come to church on Sunday so his baptismal date fell through. It was a tough Sunday because none of our converts came to church so I felt like all my work had been wasted. But we will keep working with them this week. It is just so hard because almost every missionary sees at least half of his converts go inactive before he goes to his house. It is really sad to pass for it but retention is just horrible in Chile, not completely because of the wards but the culture is very against compromise and if you don't like something you just don't do it, even if it is required. It makes it super difficult, but we do what we can.

That was basically my week, Ill just send pictures, they explain more ha ha :)

I love you all!
Stay Golden!

Elder Nielson :)
Awesome Zone T-shirts

Monday, June 20, 2016

Week 95: My Protein diet and muscles scared away the bad guy!

Buenos Dias a Todos!

This week was an interesting week for sure! Definitely had some first experiences in the mission and had a lot of stereotypical experiences as well.

This week we were working a lot with the nephew of our recent convert "K" and with the sister of "K". The little boy wants to be baptized but needs more support from his mom. His mom has been listening as well and has been understanding but her testimony of the gospel is super duper itty bitty. She has to make changes in her life and I think the idea of those changes scares her. He was going to be baptized on the 26th of June but his mom didn't take him to church like she said she was going to so we are going to have to verify if she is really willing to support him with actions or just with words.

The Family Home Evening last week went really well and was super fun. This week we had to cancel it because some elders had to go to visa and legal work so that they can stay in Chile. But tomorrow we will be getting the shirts and we will have them for the next FHE.

Well my exercises with my protein powder is going well... except for the fact that I don't have weights. A recent convert was going to give me his weights this week but we had scheduling issues and he didn't have time to have a lesson this week so I will have to wait until this Thursday. But I have been rocking the push up game (I hit 75 without stopping) so that has been pretty good but I am super stoked for the weights to get swole again :)

This week we had a crazy experience. Two nights ago at 4 in the morning I woke up to my companion yelling out the window! I thought he was sleep walking and dreaming (Because he has talked in his sleep before) but it turns out I was wrong. He had woken up and heard someone walking along the side of the house. While he listened the light that we have on the side of the house (that is a motion sensitive light) turned on and he looked out the window. A guy had been creeping along the side of the house with a bottle and when the light turned on it scared him and he ran away. The direction that he was going looked like he was going towards our balcony to break into the house through the window that doesn't have a metal fence over it. While the guy ran away my companion yelled out the window at him to let him know that we had seen him and that we knew he was trying to break it. Luckily nothing happened but it has been kind of nerve wracking sleeping at night. After that we slept with the lights on and the next day put everything important in the bedroom and locked the bedroom.

But all in all we are good! This next week will be a good one and we are going to work super hard to find new investigators to teach and to help.

I love you all!
Stay Golden!

Love,
Elder Nielson

Monday, June 13, 2016

Week 94: Wherefore, if ye believe me, ye will labor while it is called today.

Buenos Dias a Todos!

This week was definitely a week of ups and downs, but as always it was a good week.

It was really tough because we had no investigators at all. All of our investigators have been baptized, changed houses, or stopped progressing. So we spent this week looking. It was tough talking with so many people every day. It was tough having so many people treat us badly, it was tough having so few people tell us yes, and when we showed up to their house find out that they don't live there or that the house doesn't exist. I cant lie, it was a very tough week. On Sunday morning I was so tired and cranky and just bummed that even after to talking to everyone for a week that we didn't have anything happening that I was in a bad mood. We showed up to church and it was so hard to get myself to talk to people and to smile at them. All I could think was

1) I'm so tired, I just want to go home and sleep and rest for a couple days
2) I'm sick of talking to people because they either treat me bad or say yes and lie straight to my face
3) I'm failing because I am not having success, I should be able to achieve at least something in a week.

It was really tough. All of priesthood I was just sitting their a little bit dead thinking that over and over and over. Then we went to Gospel Principles with the investigators and recent converts and we started learning about repentance and Forgiveness. While the teacher was talking I went to look for a scripture so that I was ready to read when we got there. While I was waiting for her to tell us to look for the scripture I started reading some other verses in the same section of Doctrine and Covenants when I ran into 3 verses that touched my heart and almost made me cry. God answered my 3 Doubts with 3 verses.

D & C 64

25 Wherefore, if ye believe me, ye will labor while it is called today.
32 But all things must come to pass in their time.
33 Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.

Those scriptures saved my day and maybe even my week. After that I could walk with a smile and find the energy to do the little things that I need to do every day. It was really a testimony that the scriptures are true, that God can answer us when we read them, and that God blesses us if we go to church. In the End the teacher never asked us to read the scripture in DyC 64, but it changed my week having the scripture on the board.

This week we also had a Miracle. Even though we didn't have any investigators an ex investigator that we had came to church and his mom came as well. The mom hasn't accepted to be baptized but wants her son to be baptized this 26th. It was fantastic and now we just have to teach him and prepare him to be baptized! His mom said that she is going to keep going to church :) Miracles do happen :)

Today in the morning we started something new in the zone to be happier and more united. We had a Family home evening but during the day as a zone. We sang, had a lesson, played a game and ate dessert. It was an hour long and it was a blast! We are making shirts as a zone and are going to use them every Week in the zone family home evening. It is going to be awesome :)

The funny experience of this week was during interchanges. While we were out walking and contacting a funny looking car with a weird camera thing on top came around the corner. When I look at it closer I can see on the side that it says "Tom Tom." Then I realized that on top was a 3 sided camera to take pictures of the street. That's when it hit me! It is like a google street view car but for Tom Tom. It pulled a U turn and started driving away. My comp for the day was from Brazil and didn't know what a tom tom was but I told him to follow me so we ran following the Tom Tom Car showing the Book of Mormon and our ties! So hopefully we are on the street view of Tom Tom ;) You never know ;)

But that was our week! It was a tough but good one!

I love you all! Stay Golden!

Love,
Elder Nielson :)

If ye believe me, ye will labor while it is called day!
Guapo

Beautiful Day!

Protein powder "Buff Time"

Breakfasts of Champions

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Week 93: Changes without Changes!

Buenos Dias a Todos!
This week was a really busy week! We had to do a bunch of busy work and didn't have much time to work in the streets or teach people, but it was still a pretty good week!
This week we had to close an apartment because a pair of missionaries was getting taken out of the zone. Now instead of 14 missionaries we are 12. So while they were packing their suitcases we had to go start cleaning the apartment to be able to turn it in to the owner. It was really dirty and we spent 4 hours cleaning the kitchen and the bathroom. It stunk (pun intended). But it was worth it because the elders couldn't take their food with them on changes so they gave it all to us! It was great because they had a ton of food and we had nothing so it was like heaven! I don't think I have had so much food in the house since I became a zone leader (because we don't have as much money for food because we have to travel a lot and buy stuff for the zone) so it made us super happy.
This week we had changes!! And nothing changed! I am here in Valparaíso Oeste with Elder "D" still! He is the first companion that I will have had for more than 2 changes. And come to find out that I am his first companion that he has had for more than 2 changes. So he is going to be with me almost until the end! But I think it will be a good change.
Miracles and confusion with the guy who works in the hotel! This week we were working in the street at night close to where he lives and we ran into him! I started talking to him and asked him how he was doing. He told me that he wasn't doing well because his aunt died recently and was sad. We talked to him a little bit about the plan of Salvation and made an appointment for Saturday. When we asked him if there was anything we could do for him he said "Show up for the appointment on Saturday, It will be good to talk". We said goodbye and we were super excited. On Saturday when we were going to his house he was walking in the street with his wife and we stopped to say Hi to him and ask if we should pass by later but he acted like he didn't even know us.. We didn't know if he didn't recognize us because he had already passed a little bit or what but we decided to pass by on Sunday. On Sunday we went to his house and knocked and he talked to us through his doorbell speaker and said that Sebastian didn't live there and wasn't interested. Basically I don't understand if he wants us to pass by and we passed by the wrong house or if he just says yes so that we go away. But we will see what happens.
After having all of our baptisms we are now on the search for new investigators because we have diddly squat. Yesterday we spent all day passing by people we had talked with in the street and talking to more people in the street. I think everyone was having a bad day because everyone yelled at us, slammed their doors in our faces, said mean stuff as they were walking by, or were just plain rude. After spending the whole day contacting we didn't even get 1 name or direction of someone who lives in our sector. It was tough, not going to lie, but we are going to keep looking. You cant find someone who will say yes unless you find some who say no! :)
I just want to thank you mom and dad for being such great examples. As a missionary we see a little bit of everything, loving families, not so loving families, healthy people, drug addicts, drug dealers, people with AIDS, people who have been abused physically or sexually, people who abuse, prostitutes, and everything. But the thing that has really marked me hasn't been all the bad stuff that I have seen in the street but instead the things I see in the houses of the members. I always thought that our family was a normal family, that everyone did their family home evening every week, that every family read their scriptures together, that every family lived the Sabbath day, that every family did their prayers together, that every family, went to church each Sunday. But here in the mission I have learned how few families actually do all of that. Very few families read the scriptures together daily, very few go to church each Sunday and do their visits, very few have a family home evening every week. So I want to thank you for your example and teaching me that living the gospel is something normal. Thank you for helping me realize the importance of doing the small things to have the big changes. Thank you for teaching me how to work, how to lead, how to ask, how to fight for what is right, and that there aren't exceptions to living the gospel or breaking commandments. Thank you for treating me with love and respect, with patience and kindness, with diligence and strictness. I really am so grateful.
That was basically my week! I am a little bit sick with a cold but everything is alright here :)
I love you all! Stay golden!
Love,
Elder Nielson :)
Selfie Stick

Selfie Stick with comp

Holey Socks