Wednesday, June 24, 2015

June 22nd, 2015 update

Elder Reed shared some photos this week, and some exciting news - he was able to attend the dedication of the Trujillo, Peru Temple! This is the second temple in operation in Peru, and there was a third announced as well, in Arequipa, Peru. What a wonderful blessing to be able to attend that! The missionaries got special permission to go, and thoroughly enjoyed the wonderful experience!

Some photos from Elder Reed:
Multi Zone Pday with Santa Patricia (that's my Zone) and Surco

Picture from the Towers of Limatambo

Me from the 18th floor

Emergency meal that my pension bought for us!

From Elder Reed this week:  He said that he had "a long week in terms of miles/kilometers walked, but also in that I got to look a little into the future and even into the eternities!" Elder Reed had received a call from his District Leader and, as he seemed way too happy to be calling about something bad happening, he wasn't too worried. His District Leader had invited him to the sealing in the Temple of a family that he and a former companion had taught - what a wonderful blessing! Elder Reed said that he was so excited for this family, that they were making covenants that would bind them for all eternity, and he said that he caught a glimpse of the importance of marriage and choosing a worthy spouse. He was able to witness the beautiful event and feel the Spirit of the Lord testify of the importance of eternal marriage.

Elder Reed also got to take part in the dedication of the Trujillo, Peru Temple - here is a picture:

Elder Reed said that he got to see Pres. Dieter Uchtdorf, Elder David Bednar [and Elder Reed said "they were actually here in Peru! :) :) :) ], and the Area 70 Presidency of the Peru area. He was very excited to get to see them in person, but he said even more exciting is that it was explained that each new temple dedicated has a connection with the first temple built in this dispensation of the fulness of times - in Kirtland Ohio. [His own home state!] :)  He had a week filled with many blessings!

Elder Reed's spiritual thought relates to temples: "My spiritual thought this week comes from Elder Juan A. Uceda who said that if we don't have a temple recommend, we should get worthy to receive one. If we can receive one, but cannot attend, you at least are worthy to enter the Holy Temple of our Lord."

Until next week, remember to see the beauty in the world all around, Heavenly Father is speaking to you!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

June 8th and June 15th, 2015 updates

June 8th update: [Elder Reed's younger brother (who is 16) was able to serve on a "mini-mission" for one week, where they are set apart to serve with the full-time missionaries in an area and to experience real-life in the mission field. When I sent Elder Reed a picture of his brother and the two missionaries he would be serving with outside a local LDS church building here in Ohio, he sent this photo and said something like "I haven't seen a chapel like that for a long time! all the chapels here look like prisons! they all have bars in their windows and heavy-duty security doors!" - wow!]

"Me in San Borja in the same capilla as Los Sauces... again!!!"
From Elder Reed's family letter this week (June 8th): 

"I got transferred this week! I was sent to San Borja in the Santa Patricia Stake here in Peru Lima East. Here there is nothing to compare price-wise to Tilda in Vitarte [the place where he was before]. Everything here is 50% more expensive! Here there is no dust, there are very few, if any, semi trucks, and just about everyone here has a college level education. With that title comes a tougher time for the missionaries getting in the door, but the converts and members are strong!

This last week was interesting as my new companion, Elder Cueva (from Piura, Peru) and I are relatively new to San Borja and we spent a lot of time getting lost and asking people for directions. Side-note: That quote Dory [from "Finding Nemo"] makes about "What is it with men and asking for directions?" doesn't apply to us. We ask everyone we can find." [I LOVE it!] :)

Elder Reed also shared that, while at their Zone meeting, they were talking about how there will be 3 birthdays in their zone before the next transfers in mid-July - Happy Birthday!!! :)

Elder Reed's spiritual thought from this week's letter: "There really are people waiting for you. We had several lessons which, as my companion tells me, were radically different in that the people, for some reason or another, really opened up to me. Like those cheesy TV commercials say, 'If it worked for me, there 'has got to be some way that our Heavenly Father wants it to happen to you.' Ok, I changed a couple of words and practically the entire phrase, but I hope you understand my meaning: That God will let it happen to you, just be patient!"

From the June 15th update:

A new look - with a size 0 cut - I'm glad he didn't keep it this way! ha ha

"COOOOOL CAR I SAW!!! ... the first i've seen here in almost 9 months"
"Me, Elder Cueva, a member and Elder Farfan from the PerĂº Chiclayo Mission (he helped us for a couple hours Sunday!)"
From his family letter: "We here in San Borja don't have a ton of investigators, new or otherwise, with whom we may share the Gospel, but we have been stretching ourselves to get the Word in their lives. Almost everyone says, "I'm too busy right now to listen to you right now; why don't you come back another day?" We have even contacted people who have rudely said "No" and various other things to us, but that is not the point of why I share it! I share it because I have a strong testimony as a "sembrador" or "sower of the seed". They might not listen to you in that moment, but I promise you that if they reject you, give you nasty looks, and slam the door in your face not wanting to hear more of the Gospel, that you will be blessed. Why? Because you have done your part. You have raised your voice. You have warned or tried to warn that person of what awaits them if they don't repent. This seed that you have tried to plan might takes years to find soil fertile enough for it to grow or you might just have thrown the seed to the sizzling blacktop of the street in midsummer. (Alma 32 - scripture reference)

Spiritual thought: Nothing that we do is discarded... No good action goes unblessed with our Father in Heaven. Don't be afraid to share what you know. Missionary work doesn't only happen here in Peru or only when there are missionaries with name tags speaking, but every day, every hour, and every second that we set an example as believers We have what we need. The Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. Now it's your turn to share what is for all! It might seem scary at first, but I bear my testimony to you as a personal representative of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ that words will come if we but open our mouths. 

Remember the Lord always, 
Elder Reed"

Thursday, June 4, 2015

June 1, 2015 update

Elder Reed shared some of his weekly letter to the Mission President: 

This week was a draining week. Our numbers weren't quite as good as we could have hoped, but we won't let that get us down! We have even set new goals that are going to start to better our existing problems. We changed cuartos, sanded, painted, and cleaned, and moved everything. Several nights in a row we came home, planned, did what needed to be done after and plopped right down on to the bed. We were so tired. It is probably a good thing that we didn't go to the sealing of our members, due to time, but I was very, very pleased that they (to use their words exactly) "finally" get the covenant made!

Other than this we have also been tying to help better our ward council. Our bishop is very apt and ready to listen to our suggestions and those of the member of the Seventy that came for the Vitarte Stake Conference! Wow, have I seen a great change in the way our ward works! It is great when the leaders want to do the right thing!"

From Elder Reed's family letter:

"This week was pretty interesting... we sanded, painted, cleaned, and painted and repaired and sanded and moved everything out of our old apartment. I think I got sick from all the paint fumes and paint particles that I, out of circumstance, inhaled. I also saw a massive shift in the weather here in Peru. In 2 days the temperature dropped about 10 degrees Fahrenheit and started that misting thing that I had described in my time in the CCM. Yesterday, Sunday, was the only day that you could actually see the sun. It felt really good! :)

We all, collectively, killed another rat that we found in the new apartment we have. We are/were paying a good amount of money to have a rat rent the area too! [Ha ha] The rest of the utilities and rooms were free! :) :)

My spiritual thought this week comes from President Boswell [the Mission President] and tithing, but it can apply itself to a lot of other things. We shouldn't wait until we have used 90% of our income to pay for the 10% of tithing we owe to Heavenly Father. It is much more difficult to pay in the end and not in the beginning. Faith is an action word and I believe that Nike put it just right: "Just do it." The Father of All knows just how to succor His children and we should know that he wants to bless us. We should follow the commandments simply because we love our Father. Nothing more, nothing less. 

Enjoy your rat-free week! Love, Elder Reed"

"Our new small room!"

Poor rat.... 

Until next time, remember to count your blessings!