Yeah, I am truly blessed to have been born into this church, I always think about that. This week has been hard for me because I feel like maybe I am not studying hard enough or don´t know enough about how to teach and
that’s why I don´t get baptisms. A lot of other missionaries are starting to get baptisms and we are still burning though investigators like a wild fire. We find a lot of people but not the ones who act on what we tell them. There are always people willing to listen, but to act, it just seems like it doesn´t happen. I feel like maybe my studies are not focused enough or maybe I am not obedient enough, but I am trying and that is what matters. I am just such a perfectionist.
The reason I asked you for those scriptures is not to “bible bash” but to increase my testimony and to teach with more power. I am always trying to be an example. It is tough, too, because the Stake and President are pushing a lot, to work with members and get baptisms. I ask so many members for referrals and for help, but it just seems useless maybe I just need more practice in doing that. I hope I can get my Spanish better too, because to be honest the people probably understand Elder Ashby more than me because I still talk really closed mouthed and in Spanish you gotta show your teeth like a horse, to pronounce the words right. It has just been a perfectionistic struggle this week and I am also really tired of my area, I have been here for almost half a year and it is just the same old story everyday, even though I am trying to change the way we do things to work better and to get more baptisms. We also fasted on Tuesday and on Sunday for our area because we are just tired of not seeing success.
We pass by A’s, house every once in a while just to see how she is doing. We had a super hard lesson with M and M because they didn´t understand the concept of the Book of Mormon. At one point he was like, it couldn´t have been written in the Americas because it wasn´t called the Americas back then, and besides back then the whole world was one continent. I was like no Pangaea was way before the Book of Mormon, but they just were not understanding, and the next lesson we had we invited them to be baptized and they said they can´t and I asked them ´´You can´t or you don´t want to´´ They said they don´t want to, so we probably won´t get any further with them and they are really Catholic, but we will pass by and see them again. I am still learning people skills but I don´t know if it was my fault that they didn´t accept baptism, but they said they had read up until Jacob in the Book of Mormon but I doubt that, but even if they did they didn´t pray because they still don´t have that answer from the Spirit. After that lesson, I accidentally stepped in super deep mud and covered my shoe and pant leg a little. Haha. Then we saw another dogfight and this kid got in there and started punching and kicking the dogs and then this dude with a 4 by 4 piece of wood came in and just put the smack down on those dogs. Haha. He got some big hits in, Haha.
We have two people with a baptismal date. One has some mental disabilities, and we don´t think she needs baptism and she doesn´t understand anything we teach, no matter how simply we say it and the other is this guy named A and he is super nice and he understands really well. We just need to get him to church and he needs to read or he will never have the testimony strong enough to accept tithing and other hard commandments!
Then we found this other dude and he let us in to teach him so we went into his sketchy house and we sat in his room and he had this towel around his waist and he just took it off and was just sitting in his tighty- whities Hahahaha. We started to teach him, reluctantly, and then he asked us to pray for him but he wanted the prayer where we touch his head. We explained that it was called a Blessing and he said he can´t sleep at night and that the right side of his body hurts really bad, so we gave him a blessing of health and it was Elder Ashby´s first time doing it in Spanish, but we finished the blessing and a short little lesson and we left and came back another day and he said he had been able to sleep better and that he doesn´t hurt as much anymore, so that was good, but he is just a really interesting dude. I don´t know why he didn´t have pants on? Hahaha. Crazy?
Also, we have been smelling pee by our doorstep lately, and just today we saw the neighbor kid come around the corner from where our door is and we just look down and he had just freshly peed on our porch, like right on the wall next to the door! Hahaha. What kind of place is this! Hahaha. We were laughing so hard, but we are also kind of mad that he has been peeing right there, Haha. Whatever, other than that we just had really normal lessons and I think our lessons have been getting better. I used to be too nice and they would never act so now I am a little more aggressive when I testify and really blunt about things. I don’t know what´s better? I do it with love though, because I just really want them to know that they need to act. The lessons are going well and we have found some new people this week.
(I asked him if the bugs were out more because of it heating up down there because Summer is coming and also if he was getting tan) The bugs are pretty much the same, but I will send a pic of my farmer’s tan-line. Haha. I feel sometimes that I am in a Top Gear episode when I am walking around down here, I just imagine music and watch the sunset go down over the palm trees and stuff. Those are the moments when I am the most happy on the mission.
Anyway, that is pretty much it. I love you and miss you all and I want you to know that we are working incredibly hard down here in Argentina, and that I know this church is true!
Elder Nate Pendleton
A picture, A sent to my mom this week of my companion and I...
My muddy shoe!!!
Me in front of another mural, there are a lot of them here...
Garbage fires are the norm down here...
Another interesting car down here, if you can't tell, I love cars!