Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Weeks 34, 35 and 36

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Ha, I can't believe that it’s almost the end of February. That is pretty crazy. Time here in the mission doesn’t flow normally. Anyway, yet again not a ton to report about what’s happened during the week. We're working hard, and although we're having a lot of challenges with our investigators, we're really hopeful for February, when as a mission we have a goal to baptize 400. President Brough has already told us how the Adversary will step up his attack as he is aware of this goal. We’ll have more sicknesses, more distractions, more problems with discouragement, etc. It’s kind of scary, but we're ready.

On a side note: Our normal, super nice internet café didn’t actually have internet today, so we had to take the bus to go downtown. As you may remember, one of the things we do in Gmala City Central is always shout a short message after we board the bus and then pass by people’s seats and get their names and addresses. However, we missionaries aren't the only ones who do that. Occasionally there are people selling candy or begging for money, or even every once and a while a crazy preacher (almost as crazy as us). However, today, on the bus ride here, I saw what must have been the best bus contact ever. It was an old, small man who stood at the front of the bus and, after sharing a short message, sang a song about ''our friend Jesus'' while playing on an old, battered accordion. It made us look pretty lame, to tell you the truth.
Also, down here in the Guatemala City Central Mission, Valentine’s day passed without note. I was expecting at least a mission wide dance or something... (Ha-ha, just kidding)
Anyway, the other day I was reading in the Liahona and found a cool article and really impacted me. It was about how on our missionary name tags we have 3 names, the name of our family (our last name), the name of the Church, and the name of Christ. For two years that's who we're representing. Our first name isn't on the badge. In other words, we're not here to represent ourselves. For two years we really don’t have to worry about whether people know how great of missionaries we are, how smart we are, or how our ideas are really the right ones. We just need to worry about what people think of our families, the Church, and of Christ because of our actions. I'm definitely going to have this thought guide what I do here in the mission field. 
Love, Elder Cannon

February 25
Wow, not a lot of time today. Sorry about that. More setbacks with investigators this week, but that's ok since we've got several font-loads of investigators who are progressing towards their baptismal dates in March. As much as it kills me to have dates fall of investigators have problems, I'm willing to do things on the Lord's timetable and can't complain.

I love Doctrine and Covenants because it's so dense with great verses. I feel like I should mark everything I read. Anyway, D&C 123:17: "Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power, and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for His arm to be revealed." I love the trust that is implied in this verse. I'm pretty sure that Joseph received it while in Liberty Jail, which makes being able to talk about “cheerfully do[ing] all things that lie in our power" even more incredible. As missionaries, that's what we have to do. That's all we can do, but after all that, we can trust that the Lord will work His purposes, and for me personally, that we as a mission will be able to have 400 baptisms this month.
On a lighter note, I've had the trial of finding a bakery that sells good home-made style donuts for 1 Quetzal each. 12.5 cents a donut makes resisting difficult. Maybe it will help me come back from my mission with some pretty incredible self-control.
Love, Elder Cannon

March 3
Ha, wow, that was a fast transfer. Tomorrow we have yet another change meeting (which is good because they're a ton of fun). My companion will be leaving and I will be staying, which is what we expected. 
This week we had the baptism of Hermano Giovanni Flores. He's probably the investigator that I love the most in our area, so I was really glad to be able to see him progress so well. He's got a great testimony and really understands the principle of repentance.
His baptism is extra interesting because it's the first baptism I've had of an investigator that we found while tracting. We found him as we were knocking on doors one morning last change. It was cool to learn how the Lord placed him in our path. That morning he had left his house to go look for a new place to live and when we found him he was sitting on the sidewalk. We taught him the first lesson right there in the street and he gave us his address (his real address, which is pretty rare). He progressed super rapidly, but it's difficult for him to attend church because of his job. Interestingly, he's the first case I've seen where the husband progresses and the wife doesn't. Usually the women are far more pilas (sorry, but it's true).
Finally, we received some good news today. For the past three weeks our mission has been panicking a little bit because we received the news that for some unknown reason an error had occurred in the Distribution Center and all of Central America would be unable to receive new copies of the Book of Mormon until mid-April. Needless to say, we were beside ourselves with indignation. How are we supposed to help people obtain a testimony of the Restored Gospel without the keystone of our religion? The BOM combined with he Spirit is our most powerful tool and now we had to ration three copies for two months?!?
I was tempted to write a letter after the style of Moroni when he complained to Pahoran about sitting on his throne not giving provisions to his troops while they were out on the front lines dying. Luckily I didn't. Today we received the news that the mission was able to get ahold of a few more boxes so we should have enough to tide us over. That was a close one, but it made me much more grateful for the Book of Mormon. We should never take it for granted.
Love, Elder Cannon

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