Monday, February 28, 2011

Dustin's February 28th Letter

2011, Feb 28
Dear mom,
I`m glad to hear that you enjoyed your week with the kidos :) I know how you love to take care of your grandchildren and your good at it. I can`t believe that Will is already about to leave! ¡Loco!
My week went by even faster than normal. The time really does fly by. The work has been moving forward steadily and I am learning a ton, I am convinced that I will never stop learning here on the mission, and if I do it is because I am not working hard enough. These last two week we`ve worked through different challenges with the weather, the river, the schools, the highways. Mostly it is because it has been raining a ton. More than it has in 18 years. The river that passes by Pucallpa is growing more than it has in years past and they say it will keep growing through March and April and at this rate it will grow more than it has in 40 years. Also because of the rain parts of the highways have been wiped out by mud slides and sink holes, the good thing is that all of this isn`t happening in Pucallpa but it effects the jobs here and how people and products get in and out of the city. It’s cool to see the river and it makes me realize that I am really in the rain forest and or jungle. Some houses we can’t get to because the only way to travel there is in a canoe. Other houses have these ``bridges`` that are what you`d call `jimmy rigged` and there are more animals that come with the rain. I`ve seen a boa, an iguana, other huge lizards and they say there are other animals too but I haven`t seen them. But because the river is growing so much about a third of my area is in the river! Haha ha, our area is affected more because it is the only area that has the river run right by it. The others just have a ton of rain and mud. And with all of this stuff happening the work still goes on, we just have more service opportunities :) I love it here in the jungle!!! Now, for the family that was preparing for marriage, they didn`t get married this week :( because it is taking forever to get all his papers from the government). But there is hope because we have another wedding planned for March and they are preparing for that date. They are the best, we just have to keep up their ``animos`` it mean their desire and excitement and all that kind of stuff. We have a baptism scheduled for this Saturday. He is 17 years old and has already read to Alma 22 in a week and is reading from the beginning again to understand more. He is super smart (which hard to find in the jungle) and he is always in my English class, he wants to work in tourism. We have about 5 other investigators that I am 99 % sure will get baptized in the next month, and I know we will find more. Also, this week we had a zone conference with the mission president on Wednesday. I learned how I can improve as a servant of God and it is helping me a ton in my progress. After the conference President Blunck came to an appointment with my companion Elder Cuellar and I. I wasn`t nervous at all and we taught a really good lesson. After the lesson President told us that he really liked our lesson and how we worked together and used the scriptures and examples and didn`t teach too long, he said he didn`t have anything to say bad about our lesson. I know I still have a ton of things to work on but it was really cool to have the President tell us we are doing well. Hope that is enough info because I don`t know what more to say :)
I am not homesick at all or ``trunky`` I love being on the mission and the love and support I have from all my family and friends is one of the biggest things that gives me my drive, second only the Spirit of the Lord. I am grateful for all that you do for me especially your prayers. Love you Mom and am glad for all the things you have taught me and teach me and am sure that you will teach in weeks months and years to come. Also, I found a line in PMG that is awesome in my studies this morning. It says, “the application is the bridge between comprehending the doctrine and the obedience to it” something like that, I am not sure if my translation is perfect but it is so true. If we don`t apply what we learn then we are disobedient.
Take care and keep up the good work!
Elder Divis

Monday, February 21, 2011

Dustin's February 21st Letter

2011 Feb 21

Thanks for the spiritual thought. I appreciated the quote from Elder Wirthlin and how mine could be compared to one of that great leader and servant of God. Personally, I think that Elder Wirthlin said it with a little bit more elegance and power though :) My week has gone great.
I am sure it was a great experience for all to see William go through the temple. I am sure he loved it more than anything or anyone. Also, I am sure you are pretty busy with Gavin and James Micheal but I bet that you are enjoying it as always :) and I am sure Trissa is having fun in Mexico. I`ll go with her when I get back ( you know, now that I speak Spanish and all I could be of help :) Yes I get dearelders but not every week. Because I am in the jungle I get them about once a month.
Love you mom and wish you the best in all your endeavors.
Elder Divis

I have included Laura's letter for you to enjoy.

Laura Brink,
I am doing well, actually I am doing perfectly! I love the mission and having the opportunity and responsibility to serve others everyday and most of to serve the Lord in all that I do. It is a wonderful spirit to have with me always and I always pray that this same spirit of God can be spread to all those around me and rained down upon my family where ever they might be. I think it is good that you are back in Utah cause your closer to Craig`s family and even though its further away from Mom and Dad I`m pretty sure it’s just as easy if not easier for them to visit you :) you know with how they love flying. Thanks for your offer to stay with you while I study or for whatever other reason I might live in Utah. I think, based your willingness, you haven’t talked with Audra about this, because I am sure she would advise you otherwise Haha ha. But I`m really not that bad ;) That is great to hear that you get to be there and a part of when Will goes to the MTC and enters into the biggest decision he has made in his life. Be sure to write him and keep him in your prayers, he`ll need them and appreciate them. The idea of a scrap book sound awesome, but I`ll have to be sure to send you some pictures of my mission too so they can be included. I think the calling you have could be one of the most important that there is. Being a teacher is truly a sacred calling and responsibility, especially with that age group. You know how it is in that stage of life, just starting ``high school``, it is the frontlines of the war between Satan and Jesus. Encourage your students to continue faithful and to bring the less actives back to the truth and their friends who aren`t member to the ranks of the Lord. I know you are great teacher cause you`ve taught me so much. You might ask how, and I tell you that the example that you set teaches those around you with more power than you could imagine. Share experiences with them and stories of your life and you will impact their lives. And you are absolutely right that when we teach by the spirit it is always good. You`re the best. Love you and the great example you have set for me and all that you teach me. You are a perfect example of ``enduring to the end`` say hi to Craig and Kendra. Love you all.
Your brother,
Elder Divis

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dustin's February 14th Letter

2011 February 14
Dear Mom,
I I am doing great as always, I have learned a ton in this past week and the time continues to fly by. It seems like the other day when you wrote me and said that I almost had 6 months, it’s been a month. Will only has 3 weeks until he leaves to embark in the best decision of his life. I heard from Grandma that he went through the Temple for the first time this week, which is awesome! I am sure you have already learned a ton Will and this is just the beginning.
My week went really well. We had two baptisms this week; my companion baptized one and a member the other. I got the opportunity to confirm one the next day and my companion the other. One wanted both of us to baptize her and we said that we couldn`t do that so my comp. performed the baptism by water and I performed the baptism by fire. My testimony of the Book of Mormon was strengthened this week even more. I don`t remember if I told you last week but I finished the Book of Mormon in Spanish for the first time last week and to see how it works in the conversion of others and of me is incredible. The work is moving on here and I can feel and see myself growing more and more throughout my mission.
My companion was wondering if you would send sheet music to the song `Oh Holy Night` with the words too (English is fine because he wants to learn) ... and I can`t think of anything else I need, I am good to go :) Hope all goes well in your lives and know that I love you and I’m praying for you several times a day. Thanks for all you do for me. And sorry if I was difficult at times and a little hard to raise. I thank you for your patience and longsuffering.
Elder Divis

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Dustin's February 7th Letter

2011 February 7
Dear Mom,
That is awesome that Sadie could get blessed and is surrounded by so many good people who love and want the best for her. We truly are blessed to have the Gospel in our lives and in our family. It give my so much joy to hear that Will got to be part of that special day and that he is going to the Holy Temple. It would have been nice to be there but I am where I am supposed to be I know that this is where they Lord wants me to be. Glad to hear that you are better and say hi to everyone there at home and tell James to say hi to Russ and Emily for me.
Elder Divis

Dear Mom,
I had another wonderful week! The majority of our key indicators went up this week and I am continually learning from the Spirit how to be a better teacher of the Gospel. This week my companion and I established a Mission Plan in our ward. The Bishop is super excited and I know the Lord will bless this ward abundantly if they follow the simple plans the living prophets have taught them. We also had a training session with the ward leaders on how to talk with people about the restored Gospel and how to have effective home teaching visits. The people here are willing to learn and we as missionaries just need to support them and encourage them always. Also, at the beginning of this week we didn`t have any baptismal dates but now we have 2 for the 12th of this month and a family that is going to get married the 25th and baptized the 26th of this month. It was great to see them progress and watch the Spirit work in them. We were teaching one of them Saturday evening and she said she knows the Book of Mormon is true but didn`t want to change religions, didn`t accept baptism at all. Sunday she came to church again for fast and testimony meeting and I`m pretty sure the entire youth program bore their testimony, then we had our Gospel Principles class and at the end she said, `I have something to tell you guys, and your not going to like it.... I am getting baptized the 12th with my sister. Crazy! It made our day :) I just remember the lesson the night before wasn`t going well and at the end I asked her if she remembered how she felt when she prayed about the Book of Mormon, she said yes. So, I told her, `Nunca olvidelo, nunca olvide como se sentiò` never forget it, never forget how you felt. I could see the Spirit testify to her again that it was true and she said `I won`t` ,and we left. Elder Cuellar and I have a lot we can improve but we are learning tons. Sorry to hear that you weren`t feeling well this week :/ but if it makes you feel any better I didn`t take a shower yesterday cause there wasn`t any electricity or water, haha ha, don`t know why that would make you feel better but I tried :) I am praying and fasting for you always.
The rain has kinda started but it will get worse with a little more time.
Also, in Feb. they have this tradition called Carnival and throughout the month of February it is like a giant water fight with everyone that is in the streets. Which means that if you are walking in the streets (which we do quite a bit as missionaries), you are free game to throw water balloons at. I still haven`t gotten wet yet but we still have 20 some odd days left. Wish me luck. I am grateful for you love and support.
Elder Divis
P.S. The power went out in the whole city while I was writing so we had to come back later.