The more and more I think about it the more and more I think it is true! The best thing you can do when you are a missionary is work! It is a lot of work and sometimes it feels like another day of the same is just too much! But never in my whole mission Have I gotten home at night and had a regret because I worked too hard! NEVER! Its the magic of the Missionary WORK. When we are doing all that we can the Lord will bless us and when we are in our extremities we are in a place where we are more receptive to the spirit! That is one of the reasons why work is so important! I am trying to work as hard as I can every day! I Love the Lord and give thanks for all he has given me! When in doubt just Work!
If I had a penny for everytime someone asked us this week "You guys work even when its raining?" I would be rich! It rained a TON and it flooded a bunch of places too! It was a lot of water! But it was fun working in the rain! I Loved it! Oh and this week we didn`t have water for 3 days but we had a ton in bottles and storage so we were fine!
This is what my area looks like
Watching a movie at President Cook's house
This week I learned that the gospel is wonderful and can change lives if we let it! We teach that their are only 5 simple steps that are required to get to the Celestial Kingdom! How wonderfully simple is that! Can you name those 5 steps? If not read PMG in Chapter 3 lesson 3 and try to memorize them!
I love my Savior and know that he watches out for me and each one of you too! I Love you all and pray for you! Have a great week this week!
ohana and us! We have to teach outside when there is no man at home... But she is awesome! She is going to get baptized on may 7th!
I am in a new place! I am in a comuna or little city type thing called La Pintana, I am in the ward Los Robles. My new companion is Elder Corbo from Argentina! He is a great guy! He has had a few hard changes, but he is a great guy and we had a great week together!
I remembered a while back when I got to my sector and one of my old companions would always talk about miracles and pray for miracles and it was awesome because we saw so many miracles together! So I got here and I tried to do the same thing! I talked about them a ton! and I prayed for them too! Then something crazy happened! We started to see miracles!!!!! Last Saturday we were walking and I looked at my companion and said take us to a miracle! He looked at me funny, then looked at the ground giggled and kept on walking. Then he walked up to this house where we met a woman named Elvira. She lost her son a year ago. He was robbed and killed. Turns out she was baptized Years ago. But her son and mother are both active members of the church! We talked for a long while then she asked us if we could teach her how to take her son to be baptized in the temple! We assured her we could and would and began teaching her! Then we invited her to the church and she acepted and we are going back to teach her tomorrow! After words we left her with a prayer and went our way! Then my companion looked at me and said "How did you know?" I looked at him just as amazed and probably with a face of confusion and said "I had no Idea." He looked at the ground giggled again and said "God is good!"
To be brutaly honest with you all I did not think we would see a miracle like that but God is just so good to those who put their foot into the darkness! And he gave us a real and very powerful miracle!
I Love this work and I love seeing miracles they happen so often! I would invite you all to ask for a miracle! And after you ask for one go start looking for one!
Well I have changes tomorrow so I will let you all know where I am at next week! I hate saying goodbye but It is always a great experience to go to a new place and learn new lessons! This could potentially be my last sector and maybe last companion! That is wierd! I promise I will let you know all more next week! I love you all!
I sometimes think to myself. Why does God give me so much! Why have I been so blessed? I love what I am doing! For some people it might be hard for them to understand why any young person would leave home to go and be rejected day after day in the cold and the hot. Why they would go do something that is so hard. Why they would delay their lives to go to a foreign place to talk about a book, God, a prophet, and other similar subjects. Many have told me it is not worth it and that no one wants to hear what I have to say. But I will tell you why I do it! My reasons have changed and I am not here for the same reasons I came here! But I am still in Chile because I know that God loves me and he loves everyone of his Children and he wants them to be happy for this life and for the Eternities. He wants to live with them forever! I know exactly how this can be accomplished! And I want the people to find out what it means to be truly happy! I know I can help them! I have seen people change their lives for this and find true happiness! I want the whole world to know it! I just feel like I am on top of the world sometimes and that with my Savior at my side I can do anything!
This week we saw more miracles! We were walking and we felt impressed to go to a family that is less active that has not been very receptive to us in the past. We went to them and they said we couldn`t come in right now. so we just started talking. We did not go inside but we taught a lesson right there in that place! It was so cool! She changed so much in that time and was truly listening to us. Then she said "Elders I want to go back! But when the missionaries come over they just tell me what I know and make me feel bad... I don`t like it when they come over." I felt impressed to tell her "Sister, do not worry you will not feel bad with our visits. The spirit is here and we will strengthen you with these visits. We will not point out your faults, but rather your strengths and you will feel that you can go back to church with us." Then she looked at us with teary eyes and said thank you. Then invited us to go back on thursday!
Another family had a little boy named Alejandro. He was diagnosed with Epilepsy. The past few weeks they have been coming to church and listening to us! Now their son just recieved news that he might not have Epilepsy and that it has just dissapeared! On Friday we will know for sure! It is a living day miracle!!!!!! They are the Vargas family and they all live together witht he parents in one small house. They live 18 people in that small place. They were noticed that they would have to leave to a new place. and for three months have been looking and looking and they have 1 more month untill they have to leave, but yesterday a member called us and told us he found a place and now they have a place to go!!!! We are so happy for them! They have a portable house and only pay for light, water and rent for the land they are on. but the land they are on now was sold and the new owner doesn`t want them there... But now they have a place to go!
I love being a missionary and I love all you! Have a great week!
This week in the sector we what I think was a faith check. On sunday we went to try and find a less active. When we got there they weren`t there so we decided to start contacting. It was early on in the day and very hot! But we just kept on going. In the space of 2 hours only 2 people answered their doors and quiqly shut them again. Then we stopped under the shade of a tree to decide what to do next and escape from the sun for a second. I thought we should change locations and start contacting in a different place. But Elder Johnson said he felt it was that place that we needed to contact, so we decided to keep going after a quick water break. The first house no one answered, but the second house a man came out and we were able to begin a conversation with him and we then were invited into his house and shared with the family! We went back yesterday and have another appointment on friday. We are helping them with English and also teaching them the gospel! We are so excited and so happy that the Lord would guide us that day to find a prepared and very kind family. I do have a testimony of contacting, not because it is the most efficient way to find, but because it is a way that we show our faith to the Lord that we will use every moment to find those he has preapared. I know he truly has prepared people for us to teach.
Even when its hot we can find, Even when its hot we can show faith! I know the heat isn`t that bad, but I think it represents all of the opposition that we have in this life to hold us back from doing what is right!
So I don´t have a ton of time, but I do want to tell you a couple of cool stuff that has happened! First I want to tell you a story of an Elder who is an incredible example of selfless service! His name is Elder Rodriguez! He has two months left in his mission. He was recently called as a Zone Leader but in the middle of the change found out that a missionary in his zone just was informed that his parents got divorced and that he was not doing very well. So he with his companion decided to pray to know how to help this missionary. He got an impression that he needed to be his companion. So following that impression he called president cook and asked to be relieved as a zone leader so he could be with Elder Jenks through this hard time. President said yes and now they were both sent here to our zone! Elder Rodriguez is my Hero! Many missionaries have wondered why he was released with so little time. But he did not care about that he just wanted to do Gods will and He will be a GREAT help to Elder Jenks his comanion!
Also we recieved a reference and for two weeks could not find the adress! Google maps did not help at all! but one day we felt an impression to enter in this neighborhood and we went in and asked the guard guy out front if he knew the street. He said yeah its in here! It was really far away from where we were loooking. And we then went and found it and knocked the door and a young man came out then we found a family who are less active and investigators but super receptive to us! It was such a tender mercy to us to find that house and now be able to teach these people!!! I loved it!
Well I hope you all have a great week in Utah and all over the world! I love you all and pray for you! Thank you for Everything!
This week I set a goal to study a little more and to improve my personal studies of the scriptures! It was so great to see the way the Lord blessed me for it! I woke up each day with more energy and a stronger desire to get going! I even changed my alarm to a mormon message! I showered, got ready, and ate breakfast faster so I could have more time to study! Then as I studied I loved reading the books from the Book of Mormon! Reading Jacobs message and allegory to the people was so fun! I have never learned that much from that scripture before!
I saw the blessings as I caught myself thinking more often during the day about spiritual things! I remembered often the stories of the Book of Mormon! I realized that I was even happier than before! I moved forward with an even greater desire to serve and love the people! The blessings were innumerable!
I know that God loves us and wants to bless us! We just need to let him give us blessings by obeying him! We need to trust in his will and in his ways because they are higher than our ways! I want you all to know that I love you!!!! :)
Sorry I don`t have a lot of time to write this I was writing a lot of other stuff!
Ok So we had a big worldwide conference from the mission department! It was awesome! Elder Anderson told us something that changed the way I was thinking! He said When you do not know what to do, You should Testify of Jesus Christ!
What a great thing that is! At this time I am called as one of his missionaries on the Earth! I am called to testify of him at all times! I am going to try and do this better and more! Sometimes I get much too focused on the other parts of the gospel that are good but sometimes I teach Repentance without testifying of the need of the Savior or maybe I get home at night and with other missionaries we talk about things that are not bad, but we don`t focus our conversations on him! So i just want to testify to you all right now!
Jesus Chirst is our savior! He loves us! When we suffer he is the one who understands! He will give us the peace that we need! Sometimes we have trials that are not planned or expected, and we tell ourselves that we shouldn`t be here that we have worked hard and we should be able to live how we want to live our lives. But Our Savior is the perfect example of living his life without complaint of things that did not go as pleasant as even He would have liked! Do you remember? "Father remove this cup from me." But he then added that he did not want his will but only if it was the Fathers will. Maybe we ask this question too. Maybe we feel that we don`t want our trials. But Like our Savior we will grow and achieve so much more if we can understand and do our Fathers will! And when we are in our trials He will give us peace! He will not remove our trials, but he will give us peace, comfort and strength to endure our trials! I know that He lives and loves us!!!! I know that he will never leave us alone! We will be guided as we suffer with joy! I know he lives and testify of his love!
So this last week we had SOOO many meetings! We were getting back to our sector super late and we had very little time to work... But we made it a goal to not waste any time and try to work with lots of Urgency! But we tried and tried and we had problems with the Bikes and it just seemed like no one wanted to listen to us... Then at the end of the week my companion looked at me and asked me something simple. He said "Elder, did we do all we could do?" And it was wierd because I have never felt like I have worked so hard, but seen results so low. and I looked at him and with an honest heart said "Yes, Elder I think we did." And he said then we did what the Lord asked of us this week! It was so special in this moment! I knew that We did not show on the outside in numbers what our hearts showed last week! And it was so wonderful to have another reminder that this is not a work of numbers like President Uchtdorf taught. "Many thins that you can count, do not count. However Many things that you cannot count, really do count." We both felt a sense of calmness come over us and we knew that the Lord was happy and so we were too!
and now in this week we have only had two days Monday and Tuesday and already we have found new people, Taught many lessons, seen miracles, visited with members, and seen that the Lord is sending more blessings than we can count! Elder Holland once said "Some blessings come right away, Some don`t come until later, and some won`t come until the next life, but ALL blessings will come!" I know that the Lord blesses us for our work! And I want to share the gratitude from my heart for the Father in Heaven who is eager to bless us and give us "All that he has" It is quite simple! We are too be obedient! "I the Lord and bound when ye do what I say." We are to lift where we stand and give what we have been given! I am seeing what seems to be way too many blessings! Its almost like I feel like its not fair that I have so many blessings! I know that it is because I am in the place that the Lord wants me and doing what the Lord would have me do! I love this work and being a missionary! I love seeing miracles and invite you all to pray to see and have miracles in your lives also!
I hope all is well at home where it is cold! With Love Elder Ethan Groen!
At the beginning of our new companionship we sat down and talked about things that we wanted to do and things we wanted to improve together! l told my companion that I wanted to improve my planning! So we sat down and tried to make really good plans for the week! then little by little our plans fell due to bycycle problems and time needed to repair them, fallen apointments, and adjusting to how big our area really is! At first I was a little annoyed and even began to think why is this happening to two missionaries who are trying to share this message with the whole world and we only have so much time in a day to do it? Why us? Can`t you help us and make it so our bikes don`t break?
After some time in my self pitty party I decided to be greatful! I realized that now that We are on bikes we saved so much time riding to our appointments and it made the work easier and smoother! A little break here and there isn`t the end of the world! Also now I am learning how to fix a bike! I will be an expert by the time I finish in this sector!
I am learning the power of positive thinking always! The lord blesses us with bumps and trials in our lives to teach us patience, long suffering, tollerance, and so much more! but if we get stuck in our problems and don`t look for the blessings we will miss them and we will be unchanged by these great opportunities to learn and grow!
I love you all and all that you have done for me! Thank you for everything each one of you! Love Eth!