Mi Querido Familia,
It´s great to hear how well everyone is doing and for those that are struggling it´s good to hear the ways the Lord is ready and willing to help. I´m with my new companion Elder Nieto from Tabasco now and things have been going quite well.
What a busy and awesome week it has been here! We started out the week visiting a few people and finishing up preparing for Elder Holland´s visit. E. Snow and I had the opportunity to teach a few familys and it looks like we´ve got a few new investigators to teach. We had a lot of missionaries stay at our new house because they came in the day before to stay the night on thursday. They came from Constitution and the missionaries from Los Cabos stayed in a couple other houses in our zone.. We flew to Culiacán the next afternoon on friday. All of us flew out of La Paz and it was a pretty cool sight to see 42 missionaries on one plane together, plus a few bishops and 2 stake presidents! I´m sure people were wondering why there were so many people in white shirts and ties together haha. We contacted a few people along the way.
Saturday morning we got to meet with Elder Holland. We started out the day getting everybody organized for a photo with him. We were all lined up for the photo when he came and the first thing we did was take the picture. Afterwards we all got a chance to shake his hand and it was a touching experience. You could tell that he is a very special person and servant of the Lord, he´s got a good sense of humor too. Later on he told us how he had a little interview with each of us in that short moment and can tell that we´ve got a great mission here and it only seemed like a few of us are struggling but that´s normal to be struggling at times... We got to hear a few short messages from President Johnson, his wife, and a general authority.. Elder Holland started out telling us a little bit about what has been going on with President Monson and with the news of his wife passing away. He said he´s going to be feeling a little lonely during this time and he´s been in and out of the hospital visiting her the week before she passed away. Our prayers are greatly appreciated. He also told Elder Holland to make sure and tell all of us that he loves us and wishes he could be here (which is a typical comment from President Monson)
Elder Holland spoke to us for the next 1 hour or so, with a few questions and answers afterwards.. Some of the things that really stuck out to me was when he told us that we each can promise at least one convert. That convert is each and everyone of us. The Preach My Gospel manual was made with the purpose of converting the missionaries first and then those that we come in contact with. If there´s anyway we can help change the hearts of others, we should first change have that change in our own hearts. We may want the people that we´re teaching to repent. And the Lord wants US to repent.. Afterall what hope can the Lord have in this work if He can´t trust in the sheperds following His path. What possible hope could there be for the sheep if we´re worried about the sheperds staying in the herd.. I left with a desire to come even closer to the Lord and experiment an even deeper conversion to His gospel. When we find ourselves asking why things are so hard? Why does it have to be so hard? We can remember that because for Him it was never easy. Salvation was and is not a cheap price. The road to salvation always has to go through gethsemane and a cross on calvary. If we have the desire to call ourselves His disciples why would we ever think it we wouldn´t experiment at least a little of His suffering. To shed at least one of the tears he shed... I know that we´ll never fully comprehend what Jesus Christ did for us but that as His disciples we should be willing to walk at least some of the road that He walked. Then we will begin to comprehend more about who He really is and what He has done for us. I´m so thankful for this opportunity I have to repent and to follow the Lord´s path.
I´m ready to start a new page and I feel like this is yet another great opportunity to do so. I´m starting to measure time in changes or transfers now, more than weeks and months haha. This has been such a great experience to be hear and I never thought I would do and witness all the things that I am seeing.. I know that Heavenly Father has a great plan for each and everyone of His children here on this earth. And you are one of His children!. Nobody can do everything, but EVERYBODY can do something. I pray that we all can go forward and do something new even if that means it´s hard, to make us grow, and to come to know our Father´s love even more.
I love you all!
Elder David Carlson
P.S. I´ll send photos next week!