Called to Serve in the Honduras, Tegucigalpa mission. July 2013-July 2015

Called to Serve in the Honduras, Tegucigalpa mission.  July 2013-July 2015
"I love my mission! I am so grateful to be here!." ~Elder Smith

Monday, October 28, 2013

Zone Conference

Hola, Hola!

This week we had Zone Conference! It was a pretty dang good experience! 

Elder Ochoa, A member of the 2nd Quorum of the Seventy came and talked to us. He is an amazing man. He had us all come up one by one and shake his hand. While he was shaking my hand and looking into my eyes I felt like he knew everything about me! He has the gift of discernment for sure! But it was such a good experience. He talked to us about our animo (or excitement level...kind of), and how at times the way that the devil works against us isn't just getting us to sin, but also in the way we feel. It made me think about Elder Holland's talk at conference.  Maybe it's a little bit of a bigger deal than we realize. If you are ever feeling down in the dumps turn to the scriptures. I read 2nd Nephi:4 the other day and it talks about how Nephi was feeling a little down. But he found a good way to overcome it. Go read it and find out what he did.

Elder Ochoa let us have a little question and answer session with him after he was done talking. Someone stood up and said, "I know that everyone has their free agency, and they are allowed to choose for themselves if they want to accept the gospel or not, but I also know that I have a lot of responsibility to the Lord to be the best teacher I can be. How can I tell if I did all I can, but they just used their free agency and decided not to accept. Or if I did something wrong or didn't teach it the right way?"  Elder Ochoa responded, "In this life, you will never know."

What a terrible answer! But it is one that has been making me think about it. What do you guys think?

I can't believe its already Halloween! They don't have Halloween here.... It sucks! Stefanie, you better go trick-or-treating for me this week! haha I'm sad that I am missing our jack-o-lantern tradition with Bryan and Katie! That is always so much fun! Carve a good pumpkin for me, Dad! 

I love and miss you all! 

Love, Elder Smith

Monday, October 21, 2013

Rainy Season in Honduras

Hola, Hola!
     I am going to hit three months this week! Holy cow! This is going fast! I finished my first change in the field on Miercoles! (Wednesday)  They say the first change is the hardest, so its all a slide down hill from here! (Ok, no one says that but maybe I can trick myself into believing it!) There are a bunch of cool new elders in our zone, and I got to eat Little Caesars while I was in Tegus! Changes rock! The only bad thing about completing a change is that some of my friends are gone now... Elders Uasila'a, De León, and Mendosa, and Hermana Mejea all left our zone, which was sad! But Elder Mendosa is the new AP, and Hermana Mejea is the hermana AP.  So my zone rocked!

     I also went on my first divisions this week!!! I went with Elder Clawson in Tapaire, which is this little pueblo in the middle of the mountains! But the people there rock! I felt like I was just another member of their village, they were so nice. While I was there the Obispo (bishop) invited an organization to come and give out some uniforms to the kids there. It was awesome! They were so happy, and the spirit was so strong! But then the Obispo said, "Now you all better come to church, or we won't give you any more free stuff!" UGH.....There is so much freaking apostasy in Honduras!!! It sucks! But besides that divisions were pretty fun! Its good to learn other styles of missionary life!

     Yesterday Elder Glassett and I got SOAKED! We were at a member's house, and it was raining.  Also, The Parent Trap movie was on because the kids were watching it! Not really important but I thought I should add that in, I love that movie! But then it sounded like the rain was letting up so we left. But before we had gone like 30 feet it turned into a freaking torrent of rain!!! But we had to get to home so we just kept going! Then this truck drove past and stopped for us to get in so we jumped in the back and he started going. I was stoked about it, because we were so wet that it had gone past the point of being stupid and was just awesome! But my comp was not happy! haha This was our conversation:

Me- This is awesome!!!

Comp- This is freaking stupid.

Me- I love Honduras!!!

Comp- Only 8 more months.

Me- This is so cool!

Comp- Why are you doing this to me God??

haha It was so funny! When we got home and jumped out of the truck we landed in like a foot of water! But I only get two rainy seasons here in Honduras so I might as well enjoy them right?

     Anyway, it was a pretty good week! I hope Dad's ankle is doing ok, i will pray for him. Keep me updated about that one. I love you all and hope everything is going well! 

Love, Elder Smith

Monday, October 14, 2013

You Get Blessings For Going to Church!

Hola Hola!!

     How is it already fall break?? School used to take longer when I was doing it, I swear.  But it sounds like you guys are getting into the holiday season! They don't celebrate Halloween here! Or Thanksgiving either, obviously... so really the "holiday season" is just Christmas. You guys will have to go trick-or-treating for me! And eat a lot of turkey for me too!

      I have been to five baptisms here so far, and one wedding, and they have all been for two or three people! My zone is really great! Elder Glassett and I have been working hard, and have been really close with a few different families and people. But we haven't been able to get anyone baptized just yet. But that's OK, people have their agency and this is all part of God's plan! I'm not going to base the success of my misión on how many baptisms I am able to play a part in, I'm going to base my success on how hard I work. That is my gift to the Lord during my time here.

     So I have a funny story about my journal. Elder Glassett and I usually go to the other elders' house every night to just hang out after we get done working, so I brought my journal over to write in it.  But this particular night there were other elders there as well because they had a baptism early the next morning and they lived like an hour away so they decided to spend the night. So I left my journal there, and Elder Hatch (who is actually cousins with this kid I know, Jeff, who played soccer for USA Club and who ran cross country for Murray. I really like the kid!) accidentally took it with him to the church. So I searched all over my house for it, and all over the other house for it. I asked Elder Hatch, and he said he remembered leaving it at the church, but he wasn't sure.  So we went to the church but we couldn't find it. I thought I had lost it again... I was so frustrated! But then the next week at church I found it completely by chance in a drawer in the kitchen! haha This just shows that you get blessings for going to church! So go to church people! And bring a friend, too!

      This morning we woke up and went on a hike about 5 minutes away from Nicaragua!  It was amazing! I'll attach some pictures! 

     I am very grateful for the opportunity I have to be here in Honduras, serving these people, and my Lord and Savior Jesús Christ! I finished the Book of Mormon this week, and I would like to add to what my cousin, Elder Kindred, said in his testimony this week. I know that this book is true! I know that by living and applying the things we learn from that book, we will be blessed! I know it is true because I have received an answer from the Holy Ghost to my prayer when I asked my Heavenly Father if it was true! I invite all of you to do the same. Read it! Pray about it! Then read it again! 

Love, Elder Smith

The words behind us mean "unforgetable memories", and it is a famous spot among missionaries here in the south.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Thoughts are Powerful

Hola, Hola!

     What a blessing it is to have prophets who speak to us! I do remember the moment vividly when President Monson changed the misión age! What a great moment with my mom! (In response to this question from Mom..."Do you remember one year ago watching the Saturday morning session with me?" What a year it has been!) 

     Saturday morning session we went to the church, and sat with some of our investigators. It was very spiritual, but it was also kind of hard to understand. Apostles use big words! haha Then for the next session we didn't have any investigators so we jalón-ed (hitchhiked) to the church in Por Venir which is about ten minutes away and we watched it in the "Gringo Room"! It was fantastic! There is so much power in the actual voices of the apostles and of the prophet! The interperators do their best, and they do a great job, but they can't replace that same power and authority.  My notes from the sessions from the Gringo Room are significantly better than the ones I took from the sessions in Spanish.  Mom, will you please send me a copy of the conference Ensign in my Christmas package?

     Stefanie! you went to Imagine Dragons?!? That is awesome! I do remember telling you that!  

     (In response to this excerpt from an email from Stefanie..."This week out of the blue I was asked by a friend if I wanted to go to the Imagine Dragons concert with her.  I was really excited and kind of amazed because just earlier that week I was telling Mom and Dad how badly I wanted to go.  When this happened it reminded me of you, because you once told me, 'Good things happen to me because I expect them to.'  Haha, dorrrk!  I don't know if you even remember telling me that, but I thought it was really cool and it kind of changed my perspective on things.  Sooo, I've been trying to have the same outlook on things as you.") 

     And good things are still happening to me just because I expect them to! I'm glad I could pass that on to you. It works with other things too. If you expect to get good grades, it will work out that way. If you expect to go on a misión, one day you wake up and you are in Honduras! haha Thoughts are powerful!  Make sure you are telling them where to go. (: I love you, kid!  Oh, and write me your own email!

     I can't believe that Grandma and Grandpa are home from their mission already! How did that happen? It feels like they left last week. haah Maybe that is how it will be for me too.  But it sounds like a lot of fun.  I missed eating Navajo tacos this week, and going to dinner and priesthood sesh with Dad.  But it sounds like you guys had a great week! 

     Thank you for your prayers, they are felt and I really appreciate them! You guys are the best!

Love Elder Smith!