Monday, February 9, 2015

Week 37 ~~


Well its just another week down here in Mexico, there were changes, and I am staying for another week. I do have pictures for you, that will be sent as soon as I get access to a computer from which to send them, the computer I am on right now, barely functions so you know, pickers cannot be choosers. Anyways, I am so happy to learn about temple prep, like that will be super cool. All I will say is when you go there for the first time really pay attention more than anything to how you feel, and what it means to keep the covenants that you will make. You will have years to ponder the symbolism and learn, but you will only ever make the covenants once for yourself. Its honestly super cool that Taylor is home, like I am counting one by one as more and more missionaries make it home, pretty soon here porter will make it home, and then I will be really close. This month Lauren hits 9 months, now that is just incredible, her halfway point. As I have been in this district, I have really come to appreciate so many of the trials that I have had in the past on the mission. Having tried the bitter, I really have come to appreciate the sweet so much more. Like honestly I love my district and am working hard and enjoying every day of it.

This week was honestly a really hard week for me in terms of the work. Like the lessons didn't come the way they normally do, we only had like 23 and no one came to church, so I had some very angry zone leaders breathing down my neck. Luckily my district leader Elder Bennett is super nice, and a great guy, so he really took the bullet for my companion and I, and really supported us, I love that guy. Anyways, the coolest experience was last night with an investigator named Ismael, he is starting up a small bread selling business, which is super chill (its really hard to not critique a lot of the business practices sometimes, but I always have to remember I am a missionary that was a business major, not a business major who is right now a missionary). Anyways, we brought a recent convert named Rafael, and honestly Rafael started whipping out scriptures and testifying powerfully, and I realized like I could baptize no one for the rest of my mission and i wouldn't matter because at the very least I had this one solid convert who would always be there, he honestly has made the two years worth it. I also felt a little bit like I was involved in a pyramid scheme because Rafael is getting ready for a mission, so I will have joy, not only with him, but with all of the people that he converts during his mission, its honestly awesome that I get to be a part of all of this.

Anyways, this week I have honestly had some big thoughts on what I am going to do with my life, and the direction that I want to take it. I honestly realized that the Lord gives us commandments and we always have the ability to keep them, no matter what. So I was thinking about Sunday work, it is a commandment that I should not work that day, and I honestly wondered what I should do. I realized that I have to choose a job and a career that will not force me to  work on Sunday, so for example investment banking is just not an option. That said, what happens if like I get back and someone says that I have to work a Sunday a month, and I can find no other work in Provo. Well then, I avoid Sunday work as much as possible then I either do not accept pay, or I give them obey to the church for a a donation for that Sunday, and then I trust that the Lord will bless me for that. With that in mind, I still need to spend a lot more of my time working than I did in the past, I honestly have relaxed way too much in my life, one of my favorite quotes is ´´Sleep is the cousin of death´´. So I honestly am going to probably sacrifice a little more sleep to be able to work hard, take all the classes I want to, and go to the temple. Lets just say I plan on working over 20 hours every week while keeping the class schedule the same. I also have begun to realize that Mexico is the place to invest for small businesses man. Like honestly, in the US if you start a small business, everyone else is competitive, but here, like your are going up against people who are not remotely competitive in terms of business ability. I honestly some day really want to come in and invest, plus with the dollar to peso ratio, like you can get a huge kickstart in terms of funds, and then earn large margins, so i definitely want to invest here some day. So that said, I am looking at being a lawyer or being a professor, we will see when we get back.

Oh this week we got to have a meeting with Presidente Hoyos. He honestly is just super cool, and it was awesome to be able to interact and talk with him. Hoyos honestly focused on how we work with members a lot, and the thing that touched me the most was that when we really understand the restoration, we really want to interact with our neighbors. When we understand that this is the biggest thing and most important thing in life, and that those around us cannot be saved if they dont know about it, then we really want to share it with those around us. He gave us some technical advice about how to teach and use members. I apparently have gotten to be known for asking questions by president because in the last interview we had, he didnt ask me anything and was like well elder standridge what questions to you have for me. And this week I asked hoyos a couple of questions, and he was cracking up.

Anyways, I want to tell you all how much I love you, this gospel is true, to those who have not ever truly experienced the joy that comes from honest sincere repentance, I honestly can tell you that it brings peace and joy to the wounded soul. To those who earnestly seek the atonement of Jesus Christ there is peace, and happiness at the end. I honestly have really learned that when we stop being so selfish, love those around us, love God, and are willing to listen to his spirit without regard for what the consequences are because we trust in him, life is happier. I miss you all very much, and love your letters so much, I really try and write back to everyone, but sometimes I am bad about it, so forgive me please!!!!

Elder Standridge

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