Monday, April 9, 2012

Valle Grande

Hey family! Sorry I didn´t get to write much last week, how did you all enjoy General Conference? I absolutely loved it to death. Like seriously, I am pretty jealous of all you people who can download them and listen to them on your way to school or soccer practice etc. because I already want to listen to them again and I don´t want to have to wait to read them in next months Liahona. haha. I suppose patience is a virtue huh?

General Conference was a great booster which was great because this week was a bit tough. It wasn´t terrible but there were a couple disappointing moments. The family that we were teaching who came to church two weeks ago dropped us because the mom read something in the bible and interpretted it weirdly and made it out to mean we don´t need churches and that she´s "not looking for a label" even though we know that the name we carry is that of Christ. I just felt awful that night because I knew she was missing out on so much and I had seen true desires to find God. But in the end she relied on her own wisdom and wouldn´t put the promise in the Book of Mormon to the test by reading and then asking God in sincere prayer. Everyone has their agency and at least she now has a good relationship with the missionaries and maybe will have her heart softened sometime in the future. We´re told no effort is wasted but sometimes it´s still hard to feel like that haha.

I don´t know if you all noticed but to me it seemed like there were a lot of talks in General Conference focused on fullfiilling our callings and the role we can play in bring inactives back to the Sheperds fold. I especially noticed it in Priesthood Session. As missionaries we definitely see a need for that, there´s been a new focus on "real growth" which means families sealed in the temple and that every member can have a current temple reccommend. In every ward I´ve been in I think it would be safe to say less than half the people on the ward directory are active. So we´re definitely seeing the need for a bigger focus on less actives and with so many people inactive the missionaries can´t do it by themselves. We´ve been working with a couple of these families in our ward. The idea is we can teach them, help them feel the spirit again and remember what they´ve felt before and then strenght them by helping them share the gospel with a neighbor and a friend--which is where we can come in and do what we´re called to do. That last step is vital because if we don´t meet any new people that we can possible teach through those families then we´re just full time home teachers instead of full time missionaries. So this week we´ve been trying to find new people to teach specifically from these families, and like three times this week it looked like it was going to work perfectly--we were in the house talking with non-members--and every time it pretty much failed. haha. Either they left right when we started sharing our message or they refused to keep listening in another date. Sooooo, that part was also kind of a bummer this week. I think we might have thought of it like every person we teach who fits that situation will listen to us and obviously it´s not that easy. But we´re going to keep working at it, because if we can get it right our productivity will double by simply focusing our efforts more effectively.

Last but not least, we took a little escursion today and went to this dam that everyone talks about here. I think I kinda had my expectations up because seriously, anyone you talk to here will tell you it´s the most beautiful thing on earth. I also think it doesn´t help that I was raised in the most legit tree-filled state ever, but to me it was just a lake surrounded by some pretty ugly idaho-like rocks and dirt. haha. Nah, it was fun to get out and do something different for P-day. It made me super miss hiking and backpacking though.

Welp, with all the love of a big thing of water,

Elder Lounsbury

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