Week 20 - HOLA FAMILIA!!

The Leadership of our Zone
February 2, 2015
Pics of my family skiing in Utah -
just over the mountains from Reno!
Hola familia!! Como estan? I love you guys!! Sounds like you had a fun trip to SLC!! I sure was jealous when I got the picture last week of all you guys skiing....!! But it’s ok, because we had a great week here. It was a weird week, because I had two straight days of meetings, and then we did exchanges with another missionary - Elder Katoa. So we didn’t have a ton of great lessons, but we set a record for our area and had 4 investigators at church!!! (Which isn’t saying much cuz the old record was 1...) 

But Juan and Laura both came again...and took notes during the whole thing. Laura was practically copying the Gospel Principles book, until I told her she could have one to take home!! Of course for Priesthood yesterday we were combined with the English group, and Juan speaks almost no English, so I had my first experience translating and lets just say if I want a career as a translator then I have lots of work to do! 
But their 7-year old son, Adrian, went up and bore his testimony to the congregation in Spanish, it was the craziest thing!!! The amazing thing is that we didn’t see them at all this week until Sunday! They didn’t have any time for us to come over, but that really shows that they are just progressing a ton!! I am so excited for them. They even signed up on the dinner calendar that was passed around for all the members. We have an appointment on Wednesday with them, and we are looking forward to that.

Elder Johnson and me...matching
So I was lucky enough to be invited to a two-day training session for all the leaders in the mission. It was kinda like general conference, with lots of long meetings, but I loved it! I loved hearing from the other leaders and what they had to say. I was very nervous to give my training, but I think it went well! I was the only district leader to give a training, and the only person to train solo as well!! So it was really weird, but I managed to get through it. The rest of the trainings were given by the assistants, a few of the ZLs and a few of the STLs. (Sister Training Leaders). It really inspired me to consecrate myself more – and work so that Short and I can be exactly obedient…and I truly think that is why we are already being blessed by having people come to church and really progress. I am trying to consecrate myself by giving up everything.

If you guys have some time, I would encourage you to read the "the fourth missionary talk" because its something President gave us to read and apply. It talks about truly giving every single thing we have for these next two years. I love it and have read it like three times and am now translating into Spanish for my language study. When we were in a class back at the MTC in Mexico City, one thing that another missionary said really struck me…said we can know how consecrated we are by what we think about as we fall asleep. Like am I thinking about boats and trailers? Or am I thinking about the people I am serving and how I can help them come closer to Christ. That has really been going through my head lately, and so I am truly trying to consecrate myself more.

Our crazy awesome day we had planned last Saturday...
first time in my whole mission that we had a lesson
planned in every hour of the day.
I am really glad that I am serving here in Sun Valley. I was originally bummed after Rivera and I got transferred out of the Rama Vista into the small group, but the Rama Vista is actually headed backwards...they got turned into a group last month. While on the flip side our group is just about ready to become a branch. I know that the Lord has called me and Elder Short to Sun Valley to help the people here.

So you asked to know the details of a lesson we had this week…two weeks ago we got a referral from the stake president to go see this person. So we went and saw her, and she was really weirded out by us and how we came to her house. But we were persistent nonetheless, and eventually ended up having a lesson. It was our first sit-down lesson with them, so we did what is called "How to begin teaching" which you can read more about in Chapter 10 of Preach My Gospel. But basically, we just talk about our purpose and find out what they expect from us, and what we expect from them – and set the stage for what we will be doing.

So we did that, and we had planned the night before to focus on families with them, because they have a nice, young family. So we did that, and then I felt prompted to introduce her to the Book of Mormon. So I pulled it out and we read through the introduction together. We discussed it and talked a little bit about where it came from, and then committed her to read 2 Nephi 31 by herself and pray about it. We then knelt in prayer, and I challenged her to pray right then and there in front of us. She wasn’t quite ready for that – so we taught her the basic steps of prayer, but she was still hesitant. Then I offered to have Elder Short say a prayer, so that she would be able to follow his example and know what to do.  She agreed to that, so that’s what we ended up doing.

Elder Short is awesome!  I am happy to report that "Like-father-like-son"…he drove an F-250 diesel truck and has a ski boat, and loves all things having to do with boats and trucks. More importantly, however is that he has a powerful testimony that is just incredible. You wouldn’t even know he was a greenie if we only taught in English. His Spanish is coming along slowly but surely….just trying to speak Spanish as much as possible!!

Missionary football game created by my
awesome little bro, James!
Well I hope I answered some questions and that all is well back at home. Please keep all of my people in your prayers.

I love you guys! I was excited I got to change my family calendar to February so now I have new pictures to look at haha. But you guys are the best. I know that this is the Lord's kingdom on the earth, and we are so blessed to be a part of it. Have a great week!!!!

Elder Todd

Our new set-up
Our fancy lunch we made the other day...frozen pizza,
vegetables, and delicious honey chicken
with Elder Tiaou

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