Wednesday, September 2, 2015

A Hard Week

 August 26, 2015
         It was a really lame p-day today.  Basically all we did was buy the food for the week and chill in the house.  I wanted to study with my companion, but he didn’t really care at all, so we just did a really long personal study.  I can’t say I hated it, because I honestly really love studying the scriptures and I never have enough time on a normal day to study as much as I want to.  We had several hours today to just read and learn and I used it to make lessons that I can use later on in my mission.
Miracle #352: Not much has happened today except that I downloaded the Book of Mormon in Portuguese and realized that I can understand it all.
        There wasn’t really a funny part of the day either.  The truth is that Elder Corbo didn’t want much to do with me today, so we didn’t talk much until the evening.  He really is a nice guy, but he is a lot like me and I guess we clash a bit.  I finally convinced him that we need to contact in order to find new people to teach.  He wants to drop all of our current investigators because he thinks that they are not progressing. 
         This afternoon we had a really good spiritual lesson with a less active family, but in the end the wife still insisted that she didn’t want to go to church.  It is the story of my mission, that I teach a lesson that feels as though it is meaningful, but it doesn’t make any difference in the lives of those I am teaching.
August 27, 2015
         Well today our District Leaders (yes we have two of them) wanted to do divisions.  Today was just an Argentinian swap because Elder Torres is the new DL and he is from Argentina.  The day really wasn’t too bad, it wasn’t blow your mind good, but it wasn’t awful either.  We ended up doing a fair amount of contacting, but the people didn’t care much about our message.
Miracle #353: One change ago Elder Torres was in this zone and I really didn’t like him, but after today, I like the guy and think he will be a good DL.
         The fun part of the day was going through my boxes of ties with Elder Torres and sorting through them all.  It took way too long.  Other than that, the day was pretty boring.  Elder Corbo and I fixed a few of our issues this morning.  This was the first division that I have been on that  was just okay.  Usually they are either incredibly good, or everything falls through and you accomplish nothing.
         The frustrating part of the day was seeing how disobedient the other companionship is….they wake up late, come home late, and stay up way too late to exercise at night instead of in the morning.
August 28, 2015
         Ughh, well today was rough.  It started out again with Elder Turnow and Elder Alstrom picking a fight with me while I was working out. It ended up with Elder Turnow spewing a bunch of crap at me.  I was all adrenalined up from my workout so I got ticked at him. I am sick of all the drama, so I changed the room all around so that I can do my workouts as far away as possible from the elders who like to sleep in every day.
Miracle #354: We had a really fantastic lesson about The Book of Mormon and in the end, the whole family was in tears. 
         The fun part of the day was when the zone leaders showed up to our house to “have a chat” because of the complaints about me.   Elder D. gave me some really great advice.  But, the most frustrating part of the whole situation is that Elder T. tries to correct me and then goes and is super disobedient.  Hypocrisy has always been something that I hate and it was more than a little gratifying that 30 minutes AFTER curfew, when the ZLs finally left, Elder T. was still not back at home.  Elder D. looked at me and said, “I get your point, but be patient.”
August 29, 2015
         I did everything that I could today to be obedient and work hard.  In the morning we left the house to go to some citas that ended up falling through.  I made a ridiculous contact with someone about the weather which ended up with a very cool lesson where I bore my testimony about the church.  It was pretty cool.  I love thinking of different ways to contact people.  This morning was kind of a flop to be honest.  Lunch was horrible. It actually made me want to vomit because it was drenched in grease. 
Miracle #355: We had a soccer BBQ activity that was a decent success.  Around 10 less active members came and a few investigators came too.
         The funny part of the day was seeing how much the other elders hurt after playing soccer for hours. It was also really lame because we had one last visit to make in the evening so I got ready to go and my companion didn’t.  We just messed around all day and then he wouldn’t go out and work.  I wasn’t happy about it, but I have learned that in this mission it is more important to get along with my companion that to do the mission work.  So you see, even if I am the senior companion, I can’t make him do work that he doesn’t want to do or he will complain about me and I will get in trouble again.  I felt crappy about not working, basically the whole day, but I did my part and was willing to do the work. 
August 30, 2015
         Well today I got calls from all sorts of leaders because I lost my temper with Elder T. again. Our ward was divided as far as missionary work goes, but we have people who are progressing that live in their part of the ward.  The rule is that if they are progressing, that you can continue to teach them.  Well Elder T. just wants the investigators so he claimed that they are not progressing and said that they are his to teach now.  Seriously, 2 of my families are on date to be baptized in September and he is stealing them. Bottom line is that I yelled at him and he immediately called “someone” and within a few hours I got a call from the president.
Miracle #356: I am really trying to not care about the mission drama because I know that I am working to the best of my abilities.
         The funny part of the day was hearing yet again that I would be a leader already if I didn’t have a temperament like I do.  Well I know better because harder personalities than mine exist in other missionary leaders. I love being a missionary, but I hate the politics and the drama.  I am working my butt off to try to be obedient and truly love the people so I have to just focus on that.
August 31, 2015
         I am having some off days.  Today it was hot which made me remember how hard summer is for missionaries.  We tried passing by a ton of contacts but it didn’t work out really well.  I am really sick of mission drama and I hate letting it suck me in.  The thought that I have a whole year left of this just makes me want to be done. This morning the district meeting was once again specifically targeted at me. The topic…humility.  I am sick of being told how huge my problem is.  Despite not wanting to, I worked today, and I worked hard.
Miracle #357: We were walking in the street and we found 2 sisters from the ward going to visit someone they didn’t know.  I knew her and was able to take them to her and introduce them.
         I am wiped out, probably because of the sun. I feel a lot like I did when I was teaching swim lessons!  The fun part of the day was probably exercises in the evening to appease the other companionship.  It was good fun because 3 of the 4 elders did it together. 
September 1, 2015
         I really am having a hard time with mission politics.  Today I figured out that I can feel better by just going out and doing missionary work.  I like doing contacts and visiting the people I love. My companion really doesn’t care about any of our investigators and he wants to drop them all because many of them are not progressing.  I suppose he is right and we should just do more contacts to find new investigators.  It is HOT outside lately so I cut my hair super short.  It feels good.
Miracle #358: My companion got up early today in order to do morning contacts and I found someone new to teach.
         There were a few funny parts of the day.  The President called 4 times today, the first two we were in a lesson.  It was freaking us out a bit, especially me  - thinking now what have I done?  When we finally called, it turned out that he had the wrong number.  I am also in the process of teaching my companion how to speak English words other than cuss words and dirty phrases.  I think that he has the potential to speak English really well it he practices, but he doesn’t want to.  Overall I am feeling a little better today, but still really discouraged about my purpose in the mission.
September 2, 2015
          Honestly Mom a few days ago the only thing that kept me from saying "I’m done" was my pride, the very thing causing my problems.  I am doing better than I was a couple of days ago, but I have to figure out what to do with my future.  It´s fast Sunday so that´s probably a good opportunity for me to figure some things out. 
        The politics are really getting to me. You have to learn how to play the game and the problem is that I don't want to play the game, so I always end up on the short end of the stick. See, other people are snitching and ratting on me, but I don't snitch and rat on them, and therefore I’m always getting in trouble. In the long run I know it is not right to snitch, but in the short run it's miserable. I’m okay being on the bottom of the pile, I just don’t like it when people are jumping on the top of the pile like a trampoline.  The frustrating thing is that they don't give a crap about whether missionaries willing to be obedient and work, and work hard.
        I really don't feel like I am making personal progress in the mission, serving a purpose to those around me, like I am being an effective missionary, making any kind a contribution to the mission in a positive way.  I wonder that if I came home if I could make better personal progress than I am making here. I don't think anyone should have to be in circumstance where the living conditions and environment are so stifling that you can't progress. I mean, I KNOW I can progress on the mission... but is it really more progress than I would see at home? Everyone would tell me that I should stay, but then they just put me down!
        I know the members love me and even my investigators love me, but it doesn’t make them want to progress or change.  I can just keep going for another year... but is it really worth it?  I honestly don’t want to have ANY regrets and if I came home now I know that I would have a ton of regrets.  I WANT to work, I even want to work with my companion, he is a good guy... its just all of this other crap that is getting to me.
       Keep me in your prayers and I will really be thinking about it this week.  I don’t know if I’m being a drama queen or if this crap really is as bad as I think it is, but I know can do it even if it is not the best thing for me.... that’s one thing insanity taught me.   In the inspiring words of Shaun T., "YOU CAN DO IT" shouted by a ridiculously ripped black man.

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