Monday, December 22, 2014

December 22, 2014 Merry Christmas to Everyone

8  PHOTOS ARE ON THIS PAGE from this letter!!
Hello, once again! Yet another week has sailed right by and now I find myself writing this letter again. It’s been a special time to be a missionary as Christmas approaches here very soon. The people here in Peru are generally more receptive than usual and this week we were privileged to find some new investigators that are pretty cool. We have a much healthier amount now which is nice to have. With some it was very clear how the Lord placed prepared people right in our trajectory, but I’ll get into that a little further below. As this letter will be the one I send out before Christmas, I’ll include some of the highlights from this past week and maybe end with something a little different for the holidays.

      Last p-day wasn’t all that exciting apart from the time we spent emailing. We email every Monday morning in the church, but this past Monday after a half an hour of my hour some maintenance guys started fumigating the church (they didn’t know we were there). So we hurriedly exited and then finished our internet later in the day.

     Tuesday was another memorable day as we had 5 lessons with investigators (which never happens) and then 3 others with members. It really was a blessing from the Lord to see some fruits from our labor. I particularly like a lesson which we taught J­­­___. He did really good teaching as he connected with the person we were teaching and was able to explain everything like a member that spent his whole life in the church. It’s been awesome to see him change into a completely different person. People really can change through the enabling power of the Atonement. We also were able to finally re-establish contact with Josias and teach him after the super awesome lesson we had with him about 2.5 months ago. He really had real intent and will be baptized if he just follows the answers of the Spirit. We’ll just have to be more persistent in finding opportunities to teach him this time around. The other investigators we have gained are also really cool and have a lot of potential to progress.

     We also had 2 really cool contacts this week as the Lord clearly placed them right into our path. One just stopped his motor taxi in front of us and asked me how to pronounce his son’s English name. It was a little weird, but as we talked to him he mentioned how he spoke to the missionaries before and would love to have us visit his family. The other instance was when I went to buy my Gatorade from a little window store I always stop by, only this time after my companion asked a simple question she opened up and we were able to help her and learn that she was very much prepared to talk to us.

     Perhaps the largest happening of the week was our trip to Trujillo on Friday. We left very early in the morning and headed to Trujillo, though my pensionista was kind enough to wake me up at 5:00 a.m. and make us pancakes (I taught her how to make them). It was different being in the large city than little old San Jacinto and central Trujillo is very cool (photos attached) We spent the day in the nearby institute building practicing for the show and we got to eat Papa Johns, which made me very happy. A lot of missionaries were there including some CCM friends and Elder Coca. It was great to see and talk to them. Then that night we headed to the main plaza and had our very large Christmas show. A lot of talent was displayed with many guitars, violins, flutes (Peruvian ones), drums, and many awesome voices with the majority of the missionaries as chorus, and it even included some beat boxing and break dancing. It was quite the night. Then we headed back that night to Chimbote where we arrived at 12:30 a.m. Then we headed back to San Jacinto the next morning. It was all a lot of fun apart from the night in Chimbolte. I imagine there are a lot of pictures on my mission president’s blog.

     No before I draw this letter to a close I’d like to end with a little thought about this wonderful season. During this season we spend with family, with tree and lights, with gifts, with chocolate, with Santa Claus and everything else. However, perhaps, a seemingly distant time of 2014 years ago (give or take) on a seemingly ordinary night it was declared by a heavenly messenger “I bring good tidings of great joy (to all men)…. For unto (them) is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” From which night Christ entered our mortal world to establish his doctrine, to show us the path to eternal life, and he atoned for us making such a path of mercy and love possible within the confines of justice. It is Christ whom we ought to remember and follow always, the person who gave everything merely asking for a contrite heart and spirit ready to follow him in return. It is Christ whom I honor and represent this very Christmas season. As such I extend the invitation to “follow thou Him” this holiday season. Honor Him by getting to better know who He was, who He is, and what He did. Follow his example more fully in life, maybe we need to start from the simple things like getting on our knees. But as such a great, loving, and perfect being started his journey from the humble confines of Bethlehem, so we start and continue through the little things like humble consistent prayer, diligent scripture study, and faithful church attendance. As we do so we can remember his birth not through word only, but rather through action (faith). It is my hope that we can do so until a day in which he can say, “well done, though good and faithful servant…enter thou into (my kingdom). “ So as Christmas approaches this Thursday remember the King of Kings by living his principles, starting from the basics upward. As you do, I promise you will come to really fell that so called “true spirit of Christmas. “

     Anyway, that just about covers it all. I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas this week. This will be my first one away from home, but we have some fun things planned and I bought a little Christmas tree which is something. It is a little strange how it is summer here though. But really, once again I wish you all a very Merry Christmas! Be sure to enjoy it! Entonces Feliz Navidad por San Jacinto, Peru!

Elder Josh Pulsipher

P.S. This week will mark the end of this transfer so I could well be leaving San Jacinto next week.

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