Monday, October 28, 2013

Week 21

This week has been amazing! I can´t remember if I wrote about last Sunday, but I´ll write about it anyway. Last Sunday, Elder Hill and I were contacting all day, looking for new investigators. Toward the end of the day, with about 2 hours left. It began to pour rain. We were in our suits and had no umbrella, so we scrambled around and tried to get into a house. We were rejected by about 15 people. Obviously, that was frustrating. I was a little upset and I don´t think I hid it too well. After a while, I felt this peace come over me. It was pouring and my suit was soaked all the way through, but I felt at peace. Even when we were continually rejected and left in the rain, I realized that it was okay. I realized that, although we experience really, really tough times in our lives, we can still find peace. When we endure the trials that we experience with patience and with faith, the Lord gives us peace and hope, and then He blesses us beyond what we could´ve imagined. At the end of this week, after experiencing that Sunday, we are teaching 14 people with a baptismal date. 14 people who have the opportunity to absolutely transform their lives and the lives of their families. 14 precious souls that have the opportunity to make their first promise with God. 14 brothers and sisters who have the opportunity to receive a remission of their sins. 14 children of God who have the opportunity to take the first step to returning to live in the prescense of their Father in Heaven who worries about them constantly, who loves them more than we can comprehend, who has prepared the way for them, who gave His Only Begotten, who lifts us up and pours out blessings to all, who wants nothing but the absolute best for us. If this week is not a miracle and that experience not a perfect example of the fact that obedience brings blessings, I have no idea what is. Another example could be the fact that, just a few months after being baptized, I found the love of my life, Micaela Morgan Wright, who is the closest thing to perfect this world has to offer. Que tengan una buena semana y que Dios les bendiga!

Elder Reynolds

Monday, October 21, 2013

Week 20

This has been a great week. We have 8 people who have set a goal for baptism! Maribel is doing great, but was out of town this weekend. Victoria Mendez and her mom will not be baptized this coming week because she is still doing her best to quit smoking. She has all the desires in the world to be baptized, though! We are doing our best to help her overcome her addiction. She really is doing all that she can to do God´s will for her and I know He will help her achieve her goal. We had a baptism on Saturday! Her name is Viarly Fuentes. She is 18 years old and has plans to serve a mission! It was great to see her take her first step to accomplishing that goal. She was being taught by the other missionaries here, so that is why I haven´t written much about her, but I do know her because she has been helping us teach lessons to other investigators. I found a great scripture in the Book of Mormon this week. It´s 1 Nephi 21:14-16. It´s about how Christ knows us and loves us. We are written on the palms of His hands. He knows each and every one of us by name and is always there for us. He died for each and every one of us, individually. He did it for you, personally. You were on His mind when he was suffering. You are what kept Him going when He drank the bitter cup. He did it all for you. His love is perfect and eternal. We will never understand it, but we can do our best everyday to show Him what He means to us. I was told today that I will now be a district leader! I´m really excited about that and the opportunity I have a serve the missionaries that are serving by my side. A lot of times, people think that missionary work is all about those who aren´t members of the church, but that´s not true. It´s about the members, too. They need strengthening just as much as anyone. It´s also about serving other missionaries. It´s not easy being away from all that we know and love, even with the knowledge and faith that we have, but when we have other missionaries who are willing to sacrifice and be there for us, it makes it a lot easier. I look forward to doing that for others. I was recently told by my grandmother that she wants to be baptized!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The Lord promised me that He would take care of my family while I was gone and He has done nothing but blessed my family beyond what I can even imagine. I´m proud to have a father who has the priesthood authority to perform the ordinance of baptism. It is humbling to see my eternal family grow by one more, especially to see a woman who has done so much for me and loved me and sacrificed for me my entire life. She has not only done that for me, but for my entire family. She truly is one of the greatest examples on this planet for me and I can´t even begin to explain my emotions at reading about her desires to be baptized, nor can I explain the joy I feel to imagine her taking that step in her life. I love you, Grandma! I´m so blessed to have my family and my wonderful, beautiful, amazing, intelligent, funny, nearly perfect, spiritual giant of a girlfriend named Micaela Morgan Wright. Have a wonderful week, everyone!

Elder Reynolds

Viarly Fuentes, Elder Reynolds and Elder Hill

Monday, October 14, 2013

Week 19!

This week has been great! At first it wasn´t, but that changed towards the end. At the beginning of the week, there wasn´t much going on. We weren´t having too many lessons and we were doing a ridiculous amount of walking. I´ve seen myself change as my mission has gone on. Early in my mission, when there was literally nothing happening, I really got down because we weren´t having success. Now, I know even more than I did before the importance of the message we carry and the fact that God only requires of us everything that we have. If we do everything we can for Him, He blesses us. This time, although we weren´t having much success, Elder Hill and I did our best to keep working hard and to have a good attitude about it. The Lord blessed us for our efforts yesterday. We were going to visit and old investigator of the church who wasn´t taking the lessons anymore, just to see if he had interest still. Fortunately, there was no exact address, so we took a guess at which house it was. It wasn´t his house, but we found who the Lord was leading us to. Her name is Maribel Carrasco. She is about 30 or 35 years old and just moved to Coronel. She is currently looking for a job. She has had a rough life. She has had two children. Her youngest died at an early age due to an illness, and her oldest, who was 15, recently passed away due to another illness. Needless to say, her relationship with the Lord is a little strained and has trouble feeling His love for her. She may not know it, but I know the Lord loves her because I felt and feel that love for her. He loves her so much. That´s why we found her. He knew she needed to feel His love. He knew that she needed what we have. We have the answers she is looking for. We have the peace and the hope that she needs, and the Lord used us as tools to answer the needs of His beloved daughter. Now that, is a humbling experience, and that is a miracle. Other than that, Victoria Mendez and her mom are doing great! They are on track to be baptized the 26th!!! Thank you for all who sent me happy birthday messages! You can stop, though. I´ve decided to stay 22 forever. Have a wonderful week everyone! I love you, Micaela Morgan Wright!!! Be good ;)!

Elder Reynolds

Monday, October 7, 2013

Week 18

This week was pretty rough. We faced a lot of rejection and didn´t have too many lessons. We learned recently that there are one of three reasons that we experience little success in the mission. 1. we aren´t being obedient 2. we aren´t communicating as a companionship or 3. it´s a test from God. I know that my companion and I are being obedient, but many times we don´t communicate as much as we should, so we tried to improve on that this week and are continuing to improve. Even after we tried that, we still didn´t experience much success, so I´m almost positive that we just experienced a really rough test this week. It´s really easy to forget about all the many blessings we have in our lives and focus on the negatives when we experience tests like that. It´s also really easy to forget that tests are a part of this life and are necessary for growth. We are here to be tested. We came here to learn and to grow. Without tests, we can´t do that. I know that the Lord never gives us tests that He knows we can´t overcome. We can always overcome them if we trust Him. Like Elder Holland said in the conference this past weekend, "if the bitter cup does not pass, drink it and be strong." With Christ and through Christ, all is made possible. Related to that, I want to share a story. There was an olympic runner named David (I think) Redmund. He trained all his life to run in one race. When that time came and the race started, he looked to have a chance at winning. However, during the race, he injured his leg and collapsed. For a short time, he stayed on the ground. After a few seconds, he got up and began hopping toward the finish line. As he was doing so, his father ran onto the track, put his arm around him, and helped him finish the race. As they hobbled toward the finish line, many ran up and tried to stop them, but they were determined to finish the race. As those trying to stop them ran up to them, David´s father motioned them to leave as he yelled "he is my son." This is like our lives. Many times, the race is going great for us, but we inevitably fall. We make mistakes, people reject us, and we don´t have the success we were hoping for. But, thanks to the Atonement, we have a way to pick ourselves up. However, like this example, we cannot finish the race alone. Once we rely on Christ to pick us up, we can´t let go. We have to hold on, because without Him, we cannot finish the race. We will experience obstacles, like those who attempted to stop David and his dad, but we have a Father who can help us overcome all, who is always ready to remind us that We are His son/daughter. This General Conference was amazing and I hope everyone had the chance to watch it. If you didn´t, you can listen/watch/read it at I know that the leaders of this church are inspired by God. I know that Christ is at the head of this church. It (along with my family and the love of my eternal life, Micaela Morgan Wright) gives me strength to share this message everyday, no matter what happens. I hope everyone has a great week!

Elder Reynolds