Another week gone here in Argentina!! It blows my mind how fast time flies. We worked really hard this week and are finding a lot of people to teach. It is starting to get hotter and hotter and I'm getting a little tedious for Christmas time! They (the other Elders) say it gets really hot middle of Decemberish and that wearing a collared shirt and pants all the time is crazy hot!!! Stuff to look forward to I guess!
This week in my studies I've been focusing on family. It is an interesting topic for missionaries because for two years we are pulled from our families and asked very blatantly to not focus on or think about them very often. So teaching families about the importance of family is just kinda funny to me. It is funny because my family is the most important thing in this world. And this gospel is the foundation for all the good things in my family’s life. For that reason I'm willing to leave for two years and try and give that same gift to other families. Weird concept. Hope you can all wrap your minds around it. But I was studying in Alma 50 in the Book of Mormon and thinking about how the cities were fortified and as such we need to fortify our families against all the powers of Satan that try and tear down and destroy.
1 And now it came to pass that Moroni did not stop making preparations for war, or to defend his people against the Lamanites; for he caused that his armies should commence in the commencement of the twentieth year of the reign of the judges, that they should commence in digging up aheaps of earth round about all the cities, throughout all the land which was possessed by the Nephites.
2 And upon the top of these ridges of earth he caused that there should be atimbers, yea, works of timbers built up to the height of a man, round about the cities.
3 And he caused that upon those works of timbers there should be a frame of pickets built upon the timbers round about; and they were strong and high.
4 And he caused towers to be erected that overlooked those works of pickets, and he caused places of security to be built upon those atowers, that the stones and the arrows of the Lamanites could not hurt them.
The fortifications to the city can be compared to the things we need to do to fortify our families. In verse one it says they fortified with great mounds of earth. This is prayer. In verse two it says the built walls of Logs as tall as a man. This is reading our scriptures. In verse three it says they put up espadas, and I can't think of the English word for that right now, but they are like a bunch of big pointy sticks. This is going to church. Lastly they built towers and placed guards on the towers. The tower and guard is the living Prophet now. As a Prophet Seer and Revelator, he has the power and authority to see out over the great expanse of life, the past and the future. He can warn of us impeding danger, and prepare us so that the stones and arrows of the enemy will not be able to reach us. When we have all these and make them an intricate part of our lives, our cities or families will be protected from failure and stand strong against all that attacks us in everyday life. Will all of you take the time to read Alma 50 and think about how you can better fortify yourselves and your families against the bad influences that surround us daily? Yes? Awesome!!! I can promise that as you do you will see the influences of Satan disappear from your life, and when the temptations come, you will have no desire to do evil, but to do good continually.
So now for some pictures,
Picture 1: Yo en la Villa Tranqila. This is the villa or one of the kind of slum areas we have. This is one of the nicer pasillos or alleys. It rained all day. We were drenched.
Picture 2: Yo, Elder Sypherd, Elder Argueddas, and Elder Calderon. Arguedas = Gordo Calderon= Poquito Sypherd = Blanco. This is us at the Casa de Presidente Stapley. We were eating Asado. RICO!!!!!
That is all I can load up this week because it is going so slow! But it is great here!!! This week is going to be even better!!! I can feel it!!! I've already been serving for 3 months (1/8 of my entire mission). Time is flying by!! I can't even explain to you the Joy I have doing what I do! It is the strangest thing ever. I go out every day for 10 hours and talk to people and get rejected 90% of the time, but I love it!!! Because that other 10%, people listen and we invite them to change their lives, to improve and to come unto Christ that they may have peace and satisfaction in their lives. I get a front row seat on watching God touch people’s heart so that they change fundamentally who they are in a matter of weeks and become more amazing than they could have previously imagined. I have the best Job on earth!!!!
I love you all very much!!! Pray for all us missionaries out here!! We're working hard and doing our best. And all the good things you do in your lives make a difference. You can be the change in someone’s life for good. By small and simple things are great things brought to pass. Keep doing those everyday small acts of kindness and who knows, you might just change someone’s life. I've seen it. It happens!
Here is additional info and pictures about the food in Argentina.
Here is additional info and pictures about the food in Argentina.
The food here is strange. I can't figure it out- sometimes bland and sometimes super sweet. They hate spicy and only ever season meat with salt and pepper, but it tastes amazing. The other thing is that all they eat is meat. I had my first veggies since getting here Saturday. They take their salads and drench them in olive oil and salt and tomatoes and that is it. They eat super plain and their tortas are like the ones in the Mexican store that we always went to out past Belmar shopping center. Really bready and bland and everything has dulce de leche. Something new I've had a lot of is Tang. No one drinks water. Tang and soda ALWAYS and they have like 50 flavors of Tang. It is crazy! Deep fried or meat everything. It is a wonder everyone here just doesn't keel over dead!!!
Here is a picture of some food we got from a member last week!!! She is pereguano or from Peru. They eat a lot of chicken and rice and potatoes and noodles. Really good! So far my favorite food is from Peru.
The second is me with an avocado from the mission president's yard. The Castillano word for avocado is palta. It is one of the biggest I have ever seen!! Blows my mind! So excited to eat it! Reminds me when we used to sit down and eat avocados with salt plain! So delicious!!
The last picture is me cooking. We had toast with the middle cut out and an egg cooked in it for the buns of a hamburger. It was great. Wanted to die from cholesterol overload afterwards but it was great!