Monday, May 10, 2010

Apil 10, 2010 Bread Making Lesson and Walking around lost!

Hello my wonderful family!

This week has been quite a learning process. I am learning more and more every day.
We had Zone Conference and President just blows me away. He is such a successful man in life and watns us to follow him in his success. Everything he doe is to prepare us for what is going to come after the mission. A thought he shared with us is that the storms are coming and they are going to get worse. This is definitely no reason to be scared, but a challenge and a reminder to prepare for what is going to come in the future. It`s fun learning more and more every day. The Lord is really teaching me...I just hope I can be a good student. :)
So, we got word this morning that we are most likely going to be moving penches tonight. If everything goes well we should be settled into our new pench in a few days. This is going to be a big blessing! I`ll send some pictures when I get in there and are able to settle in.
So these thoughts are a little bit scattered, but President yesterday in Zone Conference really opened my mind and helped me to realize how I could change things up and do better.

So, to continue the randomness of this e-mail...this week and last week have been two of the most trying and proving times in the mission. I definitely should have seen it coming with so many things going smoothe for so many months. The Lord just couldn`t let me coast now could he? This is a time to grow, a time of trial and I know I will grow immensley. I can see a little bit of that growth now and I feel that the Lord is proving me to see if I will be obedient in all the things he wants me to do. That`s what the Lord does to us. He hits us with challenges that He knows that by ourselves we cannot overcome. He knows that the only way we can overcome these challenges is to turn to Him. I think that is a purpose to our challenges in life, to learn how to come closer to Christ. Sometimes we need difficult experiences to remember that he is the One in charge and that without Him, we really cannot overcome anything. He is the Man upstairs who really sees the end from the beginning and I know He loves me.

I really should keep a journal of random experiences that happen to me here in Argentina, but the thing is that so many things that maybe when I was at home would have blown my mind are common place here. For example getting lost on the way to an appointment and walking around for about an hour in the Finkas before heading back to the city. This was actually a huge blessing! We ended up finding an investigator that was walking from his house in the finkas to the city. We decided to walk with him and he and I had an awesome chat about how the Spirit was guiding us... (ok, after we got lost, the Spirit was defintely guiding us, I know that) and how God wanted us to talk to him that night. He came to church yesterday and was way happy! I am excited for what the future holds for him.

Sunday in church Matias Pichel and his friend that just recently got baptized as well, Jorge, as well as Diego Pichel, all got presented to received the Priesthood. It is so awesome to see them progressing and see their desire to remain firm in the church. I have grown so close to this family over the past five months and I know that one of the reasons I came on a mission was to find and teach them and bring them into the gospel. I am even more excited now because Mercedez, Diego`s wife, has a goal to get baptized this weekend! We`ve got to prepare her for her baptismal interview on Thursday and then get everything ready for Saturday, but I am so happy because this is going to complete their family! Frederico who has 7 years (yes that is a very spanish way to say that phrase, but we`ll leave it like that) really wants to get baptized and if his family continues faithful, he`ll be baptized and raised in the church, as well as their little baby Ingrid. I can see Matias, Pablo, Jorge, and Fredrico serving missions here in the next few years an am so excited for the happiness that their future holds. I am beginning to see the effects of the mission and I know it will only get bigger as time goes on. I am grateful for the opportunity I have been given to get to know the people here and teach them the gospel and I pray that they will continue faithful until the end so we can all meet each other after this life in the Celestial Kingdom.

I know it sounds like a lot but it`s all been on my thoughts lately and I`m excited for all this to happen. We`ll get the final preparations ready for this week, do some work, and I`ll give you the update next week.

The bread here is incredible! I LOVE the homemade bread they make here. I don`t know what makes it so incredible but I am learning how to make it today. We have an hermano in our ward that worked in a Panaderia (bakery) and he is going to teach us how to make bread and little crackers today. I am excited for that and to cook bread for everyone when I get back.

Thank you so much for the birthday package! I opened it last night and absolutey loved finding all the spciey crackers, the books of "To Eres Especial" to give out. I loved the laminated pictures of everyone`s faces. I am going to put them up on my wall so I have them all where I can see and I`ll take pictures and send them to you. I have enough fruit wraps to last me a lifetime! That was so fun to get and I love the birthday sign. I didn`t have time to get through it all last night, but you are all incredible! I love you all am so appreciative of the sacrifices you all made to get that to me, mom especially. It doesn`t matter to me that I got it late, I`m just so happy that finally I got it. Happy birthday to me! Thank you!

I love you all! Take care! Until next week,

Elder Hoglund