Monday, January 27, 2014

Abogados y Pastores

It still amazes me every week how fast time seems to be flying by. I always tell my comp that if time keeps flying by this fast when I get home, the next thing I will know is that I will wake up and be 40 with kids haha.
But anyway, this past week has been yet another busy one. One thing that I have been really struggling with this whole week is my relationship with my companion and the missionaries in our zone. Like I mentioned last week, it’s not that my companion isn’t a good guy, it’s just that some of his decisions aren’t the best, or most effective in regards to the missionary work. I just feel that when we aren’t being exactly obedient or using the time that we have to the best of our ability in every moment, we are failing in some way. Now that could just be my perfectionist mind thinking right there; if I’m not doing everything the best way, than I am failing. What I have been trying to learn is that as an imperfect person, I will never be able to do anything exactly perfect. I have been trying to put that in practice in regards to my leadership abilities with the zone, and in my relationship with my companion, while still realizing that I have to try to do my best. For me it’s hard to really be a good friend, a jubilant, happy, ecstatic person in a situation when I don’t get along well with another person. But, in the most difficult situations, we learn and grow the most. I was able to talk to Elder Bejar this week about a few things that I didn’t think were correct and that I wanted to change, and he was very annoyed with that, but instead of getting angry I think I was able to put in practice what I learned from all those months in the office; to stay calm and think before I said anything, and in the end everything worked out. Are we at where I want to be? No. but I think we definitely made some progress, and I am really trying to pray and find ways to keep up my good attitude even though I feel stressed in that I really have to make an effort to get along well with my companion and with the elders in my zone. Pero, ahi vamos.
This week was good and stressful, on Tuesday I did divisions with a new missionary named Elder Burnham in his area named palo gordo. It was a good divisions because he is such a goofy kid, and we taught one of his investigators named Willie, and almost put a baptismal date with him for this upcoming Saturday. He just told us that he doesn’t want us to tell him to be baptized (even though he has already gone to church for 2 months) but he wants god to tell him to be baptized, so we told him to pray and ask god if he should be baptized Saturday.
On Thursday, I did another divisions with a new elder named Elder Guant. I really feel bad for the guy because he is 18 years old fresh out of high school, doesn’t know a lick of Spanish, and has some anxiety issues. So he has been really stressed out being in Guatemala and all, and he is really a strange kid, so I tried to talk to him, but he is super shy and we spent most of the divisions in silence because he didn’t really want to talk. Poor guy, I hope I can figure out a way to help him out more.
 We also had interviews with President Ruiz this week, and it was really good, I always enjoy talking with president because he has such good insight in missionary work. He made us all take a Preach My Gospel test to see how well we know PMG, and I got all the answers correct! What president told me is that he was proud that I know preach my gospel, but that he wants me to put it in practice more. He told me that I need to be more stern with the missionaries in my zone, which has put some extra stress on my shoulders because my relationship with the missionaries still hasn’t warmed up like I want to, and now he wants me to be more stern. So pretty much I am just trying to find the right balance and formula to win the respect of my zone while still being a strong leader.
As far as the missionary work goes, we are still trying to find a lot of new positive people to teach, but the family we found in the haunted house has been progressing and came to church! They have just been dealing with a lot of challenges because their daughter has a lot of health problems and has been in the hospital, and also, the husband Urbano needs a divorce from his wife so he can get married to Elsa, the woman he is living with right now. So we have been talking with lawyers to try to figure out the paperwork for all that, but being in Guatemala means that everything is twice as complicated for the fact that keeping track of the paperwork is super difficult because people lose it, or the government losses it. On top of that, last night we were with them, and out of nowhere, we were just sitting at their table talking and Elsa says, “I don’t know if I want to live with and marry Urbano anymore.” Elder Bejar and I were both just like uhhh what?!? Because Urbano was just sitting right there. Guatemalans are really weird and quite rude sometimes because they like to talk about people right in front of them while talking like they aren’t even in the room. So we had to think fast and give marriage counsel right there and then when neither of us have been married. Let’s just say it wasn’t the first time I’ve done that in my mission. So Elder Bejar and I just start talking with them, and I was praying so hard to know what to say so that they stay together so that they can get married and baptized. It was quite interesting, but I shared what came to my mind and in my heart, and in the end of it all we were able to help Elsa think about all the good times she has shared with Urbano, and not about the negative. It really was a miracle that we were able to know what to say and everything. We are going over tonight to see how they are and see if we can figure out the paperwork.
The work has been quite difficult as of late. We had a lesson with another family where the husband is a member and the wife isn’t, and in the middle of our lesson, 2 pastors that are relatives of the wife just busted in and started bible bashing with us about dumb stuff that doesn’t even matter. We tried getting another family to church where the mom is a member but the dad isn’t, and the mom wanted to present her new baby in church, but when we went to go pick them up, the husband had just left to go work like a jerk. The miracle that did happen is that the dad of Elsa came to church on his own yesterday, so we are hoping to teach him and get him baptized in the next couple of weeks!
Speaking of yesterday, it was super stressful, because our bathroom flooded again, and so I didn’t have time to prepare my talk I had to give in sacrament meeting, and the sister missionaries had a problem where a stranger in the street attacked them and touched them, so we had to run over to deal with that, and we had a meeting with the Stake President and President Ruiz where the stake president said that he doesn’t like the missionaries here because of horrible things missionaries have done here in this stake in the past, so pretty much we are just dealing with tons of things right now. I hope this letter doesn’t seem to depressing, it just that we are on the upward climb/struggle right now in my area and zone, but I know that things will get better I just have to be consistent and do what I need to do.
I love you all so much, and I will be fasting and praying for Kelsey. Thanks for everything!
-Elder Henderson

(Oh and I forgot my cord to attach fotos, so they will have to wait until next week sorry.)

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