Monday, June 25, 2012

The Spirit is the Real Teacher

Familia, y Amigos,

Hello again!! I hope you all had a great week. This week I learned a lot here in Omaha and we had some great experiences.

On Wednesday, we had Specialized Training and it was the last meeting that we will have with President Kunz. It was a powerful meeting and I learned a ton. But I will miss President Kunz as the mission President. I have learned so much from him. He is constantly filled with the Spirit and I will miss that. Even though I think the mission will be different with a new mission President, it sounds like President Weston will be great as well. He's coming from Utah... haha yeah! But I think it will be cool to work with two different mission Presidents and learn from both of them.

From our specialized training, we learned a lot about the importance of the Spirit and teaching people, not lessons. Elder Pese and I have been trying to make some changes to work more with the Spirit, and I felt like it clicked during one visit in particular with a lady named C. We have seen her a few times and had taught her the Plan of Salvation, but this time we taught her the Restoration, and it was probably the best lesson that Elder Pese and I have taught together. We felt like the Spirit was there, we had really good unity, and the Spanish just flowed. We asked a lot of questions and I think that's what made everything so different. I was so pumped when we finished the lesson and she told us that we could come by again today. There was only a two-day gap. I was so stoked. I felt like that meant she was really interested. So, we were super pumped about that. But we hope to do better at working with the Spirit more.

And then throughout the week there have been several little tender mercies that I've seen and it's been awesome. This week we also brought out the bikes and so we've been riding a lot. We come home with our shirts flippin' soaked, so that kinda stinks but it feels great afterwards.

Really quick, I have a funny story. On like Tuesday, we were walking down the sidewalk to go see an investigator and on our way we were kicking rocks between each other's legs, and after a little bit we said hi to this one guy that was outside, and then after talking to him we got walking again and we walked into a tree branch. haha. But I was wearing my glasses and when I was trying to walk under the branch, one of the leaves or something caught onto a part of my glasses and it pulled my glasses off my face. hahha I felt like an idiot, but it was hilarious!! haha

Other than that, it was a good week! haha But anyway, I hope you all have another great week! I love you all. Thanks so much for all that you do and for your support!

Elder Vawdrey

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Little by Little

Familia y Amigos,
Hello again... I hope you all have enjoyed another week of life and hot weather! yeah! haha I'm craving an otter pop right now...but anyway.

This week was very different compared to the rest of my mission thus far. We found out that we have bed bugs and this week was also the "apartment cleaning check," so we spent 3 straight days just cleaning our apartment of former missionaries' stuff, washing ALL of our clothes, turning upside down our beds and desks and dressers, and etc. Flip, I'm glad my parents didn't make me clean like that back at home. haha But, I think we are safe from bed bugs for at least a month...or so we hope...and our apartment looks brand new. It feels good to have the place free of old stuff even though it was a pain to get it all done. We were supposed to get the apartment checked by somebody but nobody even came. We were kinda frustrated, but I remembered a quote from the quote book my mom sent me: "The best part of having done something is having done it." or something like that. haha I don't care if someone comes and checks it anymore, it just feels nice, and I think the spirit is stronger during our studies because we cleaned.

But we have one pretty solid investigator right now, JG. He has been to church 4 times and is a referral from members in our ward. We are planning to have dinner with the members and JG this week and after we will teach a lesson with them, so we are pumped for that. But other than JG, all of our other investigators seem to just be floating around right now. This next week we have a specialized training about Finding, so I'm looking forward to that. But, we need to think of new ways to find investigators.

As for something else that I'm SUPER pumped about is that I finished El Libro de Mormon in Spanish this week for my first time!! boo ya! My goal was to finish it by my 1-year mark, and I beat it by 2 days! yeah baby!

But this week it hit me again about how good things come slow. I sometimes still get frustrated with my Spanish...but oh well. I realized that I just got to focus on one thing at a time, one day at a time, and then overtime, I will hopefully know a lot more! haha I guess that is my spiritual thought for this letter...Little by Little.

Thanks to each of you for all that you do, your support, and your examples. Have a great week!

Elder Vawdrey

P.S. I learned how to say one of my favorite quotes in Spanish the other day. Los hereos no nacen, sino que se hacen! "Heroes aren't born, they're made!"

Monday, June 11, 2012

Grab a milk!

Familia y Amigos,

Buenos Dias! I hope you all enjoyed your first week of summer. And I don't know what it's like out there in good old Utah, but here It's starting to get really hot!! holy cow. The humility is killer. Let me just say, it is so nice to have an air conditioner in the car and apartment!! haha

This week, I have learned that you gotta expect the unexpected. Things wont always go as you had planned. As for my companion and me, we decided that we wanted to try and find a tender mercy from the Lord each day. And the first day we did it...I think it was Friday, we definitely had one. We were walking out in the flippin' hot sun and we weren't having much luck with getting in to visit with the investigators we wanted to see. We decided that we would walk away from the area that we were in to a different area (like a 20-minute walk). Well...as we were walking, we just got talking about food...you know us. We really like food. haha And we actually started talking about milk and how we wish we had some milk right now. So we were getting pretty dehydrated with the heat and no water so we decided that we would stop by Subway on our way over to the other area to grab a quick cup of water. When we walked up to the register to ask for a cup of water, a guy that was standing back by the door just came right up to us at the register and asked us: Hey do you want something? And at first, we were like "Oh no, we're good." But then he was insisting that we get something. After a minute of him insisting to buy us something, we were like "All right, we'll get a cookie." haha And then he was like, "Hey get them both a milk too!" haha... We both thought it was hilarious that right before we walked into the restaurant, we were talking about how badly we wanted milk, and then here we are with a cup of milk. What makes this story even better is that the guy that bought us the milk, his name was Jesus! How cool is that?

This was an experience that I will never forget. It was something super simple and easy to overlook, but this experience helped me to realize that God knows who we are, He knows our thoughts, and He knows our needs, and if we look for Him, He will help us out. Oh, and also something I thought was really cool is that the guy that bought us the milk wasn't even a Mormon. He had a nice family but said that he has a lot of respect for Mormons... and his grandma is a Mormon. So that was a really cool experience.

Now to switch gears a little bit, this week, we found out that we have BED BUGS. FLIP. haha Our apartment manager told us that we have to take EVERYTHING out of our apartment so that he can spray all the apartments with some stuff. So that was pretty frustrating to hear about that. But hopefully it will kill the Bed Bugs quick and that we wont get eaten by bugs.

Now as for investigators, we didn't have a lot of special things happen this week, but we did get a referral from a member for a guy named JG, and he has been to church three times. He seems pretty solid. So we are hoping that he continues to have interest in the church as we go over and visit with him!

It's been a good week. We bought some otter pops to help us stay hydrated! I suggest it for you all back at home too. They're good :) I love you all. Have a great week and thank you so much for all of your love and support!

Elder Vawdrey

Thursday, June 7, 2012

What's your potential?

Familia y Amigos,

This week is transfer week... and good news! I will be staying here with Elder Pese. That is what I was expecting and hoping for and also the other two Elders that we share an apartment with will both be staying as well! We are all super stoked!!

But, as for this past week, in our district meeting, I set baptismal goals for the month. And after each companionship shared what their goal was, our district leader asked: "Okay, now how are you going to achieve that?" Right then, I realized that we really didn't have a plan. So we talked about it for a bit and came up with the conclusion that we just need to invite our investigators to be baptized more. So that night, we saw an investigator...A, and we had the plan to set her for baptism. When we walked in, we asked her what she remembered from our last visit and she remembered like everything, it was so sweet. We had talked about the importance of authority and so when she told us that she remembered all of that, we were both just like... "Dang, it's time!!" haha So we set her for baptism! She has been taught by several missionaries in the past, and so we are hoping that this time she will keep progressing. She is from Guatemala and probably one of the nicest people I have met.

Then, just yesterday we had another District Meeting, and our leader taught us about the importance of Charity and how Charity means Seeing the potential that others have no matter where or who they are right now. And then we talked about the Potential of each child of God. We each have the potential to become like our Heavenly Father. Do we believe that? We were sent here to be happy, to learn and progress, and to overtime become like our Heavenly Father. We set our own limits. With God's help we can become who he wants us to be and who we want to be. So, always remember your Potential! We learn little by little. But if we trust in the Lord, we can do it! That is something that I am going to commit myself to do better this week. Remember my potential. Because we can only see the potential of others if we first see the potential in ourselves! Ah... some good meetings this week.

Anyway, I hope you are all doing great. Thanks so much for your love and support. It means so much!! Have a great week, and remember YOUR potential!!!

Elder Vawdrey

Elder Pese - Had no tissue, so he found some newspaper in the truck!

The Paleta man we see walking our streets every day

The Omaha Spanish District