Monday, April 28, 2014

Family Photos

It was a really crazy week! I will just share a few highlights. We were working in a town with some other missionaries and my companion and I contacted a house just outside of an Evangelical church. The lady came out and talked to us for a minute and told us that she was a member of the church next door and said that she felt sorry for us because we didn’t have the spirit. Well, I was determined to show her that we had the spirit, so I whipped out my family photo album that I carry around with me. I love these photos because they really reflect the love in our family and I have received so many great comments about them. Thank you mom for making us pose for photos. Anyways, I showed this lady a photo and said, “What do you see there?” She looked at it for a moment and then she said “Pain”. I was sitting there thinking, “Are you blind?” I see the most pure happiness there is in this world. Then she told me that our family was of the devil. I didn’t take that too well. But, it makes for a good story.

A Family Photo of when we all walked to the Salt Lake Temple - 2013

Later that night we had a great family night with K and her family. They wanted to thank us for what we did for their family. They had a mountain of scones and apple pie waiting for us. I felt really good. It was one of those moments where I felt completely fulfilled, that we had truly helped someone.

I also had an emergency inter-cambio in PitrufquĂ©n for three days and was stuck with one shirt and no blankets. Luckily, they had a good heater. It was the one time I didn’t bring a sleeping bag on an inter-cambio. For all those coming to Southern Chile, the sleeping bag is a must. I have heard too many horror stories about missionaries freezing on the cold ceramic floor without blankets during exchanges. The sleeping bag keeps you so warm at night, now that it is the colder rainy season and there is no central heating. It is a million times better that blankets. Boots are tricky; something light, warm and waterproof. Not big clompers. 

First and foremost, I want to wish Grace the happiest Birthday ever! I love her so much! Everyone thinks she is the cutest when I show off the family photos. I also want to congratulate Claire on qualifying for State. Keep up the great work! It is so fun to hear about how her running is really taking off. It is so well deserved, way to go Claire! New personal records every week! Congratulations to Nathanael and Whitney also! 

AND I AM SO STOKED THAT WE ARE BUILDING A HOUSE FOR ME IN LAMB'S CANYON, THANK YOU GRANDPA PAUL! I CANNOT WAIT TO LIVE THERE! (kidding, not just for Will, but probably his favorite place on Earth)
The Ridge in Lamb's Canyon - 2013
Also, could you ask Grandpa Paul to send me advice from his days as Mission President? Thanks for everything. Elder B and I just got a list of members organized by street and we are going to try and contact everyone this week. Lots of families to find! 


Elder Christensen

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Easter and The Savior

A picture from my last companion when the goat was trying to eat my tie.

I got lucky this morning and printed letters off so I can respond to you guys today! I just want to start off by telling each one of you how much I love you and how blessed I feel to have the most amazing family in the entire world. You are all incredible!

Thank you for sending the great Mormon Message. I got a glimpse of it earlier this week when I was looking up a ward directory in Loncoche. It is so cool that on my lds account I have directories for all the wards in my mission, as well as my home ward. The Church is pretty incredible. I am stoked that mom found it in Spanish because we can download it to a pin drive and then often we can plug the pin drive directly into the TV and share a Mormon message or video about Christ right there in someone’s home quickly.

I am so grateful for our Savior as well and this opportunity I have to come to know Him. This week I decided that this is going to be my new focus. I am grateful that He loves us and that He is patient with me. I often feel frustrated with myself about all the little slip-ups I make. Satan wants to tear us down, but when we understand that Christ wants us to be happy, and to have joy and peace, and that the adversary wants us to be miserable, we can put off the adversary. I love 2 Nephi 2 in the Book of Mormon, because it talks a lot about this contrast. I know that we find peace when we turn to Christ and I love Him and want to know Him better. I love studying about Him every day. It is so important to set aside time to study the scriptures every day because it bring us closer to Him. I have very few regrets from before my mission, but one of them is that I didn´t set a good 30 minutes aside every day when I was awake and attentive to study the scriptures and Preach My Gospel. Take the time, it is more that worth it. A great talk that I love by Neil A. Maxwell is “In Him All Things Hold Together” (In Him All Things Hold Together, BYU Speeches). Will you all listen to it? 

I love each of you tons! 

Elder Christensen!

We had a great p-day activity and saw some beautiful waterfalls and this cool old plane.
Chile is beautiful!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Going Well in Loncoche

Baptism in Loncoche

I hope all is well at home, I love you guys so much, you are amazing!

We had a really great baptism Saturday. It was these two little girls, K and another girl from the primary. I am so happy for them. I feel really good for K and her family because I think it really did bring them back to the Church and I have never seen her more happy than she was after the baptism. I had a great feeling of peace as she was baptized and it made me feel sooo good.  I can’t wait to help more people!  I spoke at the baptism and talked about how grateful I am for the little girl I got to baptize almost a year ago and showed a card that Grace had slipped into one of my books. This card means so much to me. I found it a couple months back, when I was struggling and it made my day. It has a picture of Grace and I right before I baptized her and on the back Grace wrote.  “Remember this was the happiest day of my life! I love you.” Thank you Grace!

Will at his sister Grace's Baptism 2013
Things are going well here in Loncoche. My new companion is a great guy and easy to get along with.  I really like him and appreciate him because he is willing to work. He appreciates my ideas and we work together to plan and stuff like that. We also pulled off a deep clean in the house, so that is good. We got all the mold out and now the house smells like clorox. We also fired up the wood-burning stove. I am really excited for this Cambio. Last week with Elder B we were planning and we cleaned one morning so we didn’t get too much teaching done but I am really excited to get to work and just teach. I am reading a great little book called, “Member Missionary Work, Finding the Elect of God”. It is interesting. It’s super short and only 100 pages long, so I just read it when I have a little time. It is written by a missionary named Marshall, who didn’t baptize his first 8 months in the mission field and then ended up setting a mission record for baptisms. It is interesting and has some great ideas that I am trying to apply. Basically it has helped me know not to be afraid, to be bold.

I am doing great, just hoping I am doing something right. I decided I really want to focus on my relationship with Christ and develop a relationship and testimony that will be super strong for the eternities. I have been listening to conference in the mornings and love it. I feel so good when I listen to the prophet and apostles and I know that they are called of God.

Love you all! Have a great week!

Elder Christensen