Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September 28, 2015- A Week Full of Miracles

Hola Familia y Amigos!
This week was probably one of the best working weeks of this
transfer. Last Monday we had a really good lesson with a new
investigator named M. He just recently moved from the Dominican
Republic to here about a month or so ago. He was taught by
missionaries there and already has a really strong testimony that the
Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet. A cool
experience that we had with him was when we taught him on Saturday
night he flat out told us at the end of the lesson (of course in
Spanish) " I don't know if you guys believe me but I already know that
the Book of Mormon is true." It was a super cool experience to see his
testimony of the restored Gospel and it was only the second lesson
that we had with him. On Tuesday we were on exchanges with the
District Leader and it was a super good exchange to be able to
evaluate how we have been working in the area and other aspects of
missionary work. He helped me to understand that a lot of the times
when things are super slow is to just tract doors even though it is
not the most effective way to find new people it still is a finding
tool. That helped me to realize that that is something that I can work
on and that if I don't do all that I can the Lord can't bless us with
all the awesome miracles and blessings that He has for us. So I am
looking forward to this upcoming week to be able to work even more in
this area that I have been for about 7 months.
On Wednesday we had the opportunity to be able to go and help an
Hermana in the ward de paint her porch and it was a good opportunity
to be able to talk to her less-active son,  J so it was a good
service opportunity. We were able to have a lesson with V. this
week! That is the second week in a row! We were supposed to have a
lesson with her on Tuesday but she called us an hour before the lesson
and canceled because some freak thing happened and she fell and hurt
her self. Luckily she was feeling way better on Thursday and we were
able to teach. It was a good lesson just please pray for her health
because that is  something that is keeping her from coming to Church.
On Sunday we had the opportunity to go over to the Castillo's house
for dinner. Hermana Castillo is a recent convert that was baptized the
Saturday before I got here to Lawrence and she and her family were my
first member meal and lesson in the Mission field so we are super
close. It was great to be able to go over and just see the progress
that the whole family has made since I got here, and it has been a
blessing to see them progress.
I know that this is the true church of Jesus Christ and that through
applying the principles from the Book of Mormon and the teachings of
the Latter-Day Prophets and Apostles we can have happiness and peace
in this world that is just pure crazy. I know that as we come with
open hearts and with questions to General Conference that the Lord
will bless us with the comfort and answers that we are looking for.  I
would invite anyone that reads this to take time to listen to or watch
General Conference and bring one question as you are watching and
paying close attention the Lord will bless you with an answer. I hope
you all have a great week!
-Elder Espinoza
Here is a picture of the Trio and Hermana Castillo and her Daughter
Angie (who was also  baptized with her.) (Elder Peterson is behind
ELder Bills on the Right)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

September 21, 2015 - Dentist, Zone Conference, and International Festival

Hola Familia y Amigos!
   Well this week was a week packed full of things that did not
include tracting doors that much unfortunately but did include
sickness again as well as a dentist appointment. On Tuesday Elder
Bills, Elder Peterson, and I had to go to the dentist for Elders Bills'
because one of his teeth has been bothering him recently. The dental
appointment was about 30 minutes away from Lawrence into New
Hampshire. We finished there but did not get back to Lawrence until
about 5:30 and then we had to go to our Coordination meeting. After
coordination was over we basically did not have any time to work in
our area so that was kind of a bummer.
   Then on Wednesday we had a great Zone Conference up in Exeter, New
Hampshire and it was really awesome. The topic of Zone Conference was
on the Book of Mormon and I learned a lot on how I can better utilize
the Book of Mormon in teaching and personal progression in the Gospel.
Something that was said about the Book of Mormon that we can learn
from it, is that: "We should keep the perspective that afflictions
(temptations, difficulties in life, a passing of a family member, and
just trials in general) are blessings for us and that they will
ultimately make us stronger. Also that the Book of Mormon helps us to
better understand the "Why" of Christ's life while the Bible helps us
to understand and know what He did during His life.
   On Thursday Elder Bills got sick and so we came home and stayed in
all day after going to an appointment. Unfortunately our investigator
was not home for the appointment and we were not able to have any
lessons that day. Friday we had a good lesson with our investigator
V. We taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ (Faith, Repentance,
Baptism, Receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the
End) and talked a lot about baptism and confirmation and why it was so
important. The cool thing was when we asked her if she knew the Book
of Mormon is true and she bore powerful testimony and how she has the
conviction of its truthfulness. She is super awesome so please pray
for her because she is having some health problems right now and that
is the first lesson we had with her this transfer.
   On Saturday we had a great day it wasn't full of work but we had a
great activity that the Lawrence Ward does every year called the
International Festival. The festivals purpose is to display all the
different cultures that are in the Lawrence Ward which are many. It
was really cool because each different country  had there room that
they decorated and brought typical dishes that you would have if you
were in those countries.  The different countries that were displayed
was Republica Domincana, Guatemala, Columbia, El Salvador, Puerto
Rico, and Venezuela are the main ones that I can remember right now.
They also displayed music or dances from those countries. It was a
blast and a good activity for investigators and less actives to come
to. unfortunately none of our investigators were able to make it, but
it was still really good.
   Well that was my week this week and I hope you all had a great
week. I know that this Gospel is true and can bless the lives of all
those that applies its principles. I know that my Savior Jesus Christ
lives and that through His loving and infinite Atonement we can have
happiness and joy in this life. I also know that through acts of
service we can show the Saviors love to others and show that we are
followers of Him.
-Elder Espinoza

Sent from my iPad

Monday, September 14, 2015

September 14, 2015 - Good bye Summer of Lawrence

How is everyone this week?
Well this week was eventful and just full of the normal stuff that
happens here in my part of Lawrence. To start off at the beginning of
the week (on Tuesday) we went out to work and it was a bit cloudy but
it didn't look like it would rain... We thought in correctly it
started to pour and we got soaked. We were wet from head to toe but it
was really awesome to see people's reactions as we were walking past
them either if they had umbrellas or were in their cars nice and dry
and we walked past with smiles on our faces (or at least I did because
I thought it was a blast.). Well as a ward we have started a Book of
Mormon challenge to read it before the next General Conference in
April. It is great to see the enthusiasm that a lot of the members
have to read it and it has been great to see the progress that some of
them have made in three weeks. I know that the Book of Mormon can help
us prepare for General Conference and help us to overcome our
challenges in this world and life. Life and challenges in this life
can be very difficult and the temptations of the world are great but
if we hold strong to the iron rod (word of God) we can overcome those
difficulties. Thursday we had another walking day we had four set
appointments but unfortunately they all fell through and we walked a
lot. We had some great contacts and hopefully we will be able to see
them and our other investigators this week. Please pray that we will
be able to have lessons with those people and our investigators. Just
a little info on my companions. Elder B is from Heber, Utah and he
is a skiing, mountain biking, and curry enthusiast. Elder P is
from Sandy, Utah and he loves to go duck hunting, play baseball, and
he loves trucks. We are getting along pretty well and are still trying
to get teaching units down but I think it will be really good this
week as we continue to put our trust in the Lord. Something really
cool that happened this past Saturday was the baptism of a man named
R that I taught who lives on the other side of south Lawrence.  It
is great to see how the gospel can change someone's life and help them
to become a disciple of Jesus Christ. Other than that we all got sick
on Saturday night so we went to church and a members house for dinner.
We were going to go out and work but Elder P wasn't looking
very good so we stayed home. That's all I got for you this week. I
know that this is the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ and I know that
my Savior lives. Continue to serve the Lord and he will bless you in
many ways you can't imagine. Hope you have a great week.
Elder Espinoza

Sent from my iPad

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

September 7, 2015 - Walking..... seems to be the trend

Hola Familia y Amigos!
  Otra vez estamos aqui en una nueva semana... Sorry Spanish happens
sometimes. Another week is here and this week we did a little bit less
walking so that was nice. We had 5 lessons this week and they went
really well. The mission is a great way to start to love walking
though and it is a blast in a trio especially when we are all pretty
big guys. People when they drive by will look at us and get distracted
it is pretty funny. The trio is a blast and we are having a lot of fun
and working hard. We had a really cool miracle this week. I am not
sure if any of you remember J but we finally had contact with her
after a month of not being able to actually sit down. Last night we
stopped by and she was home. It was a relief to be able to talk to her
and figure out why we have not been able to see her. She has been
working a lot recently and things have not been going very well but
she has desires to continue to learn and progress towards baptism so
please pray for her so that she will continue to progress. Other than
that just a normal week with a lot of walking and service to members.
Hope you all have a great week. I know that this is the Gospel of
Jesus Christ and that the Book of Mormon is true and it has the power
to change the lives of people if they apply its principles. I know
that my Savior lives and that he loves each and everyone of us.
-Elder Espinoza

Sent from my iPad

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

September 1, 2015 - El Viaje al Templo

Hola Familia y Amigos!

This past week there was not much action. We had two lessons and the
rest of the week was full of walking which was ok. Recently a lot of
appointments that we have set with investigators have all fallen
through so please pray that we will be able to have some lessons this
week especially with J. Unfortunately not much else to report
other than the miracle that I saw this week was that we had two
investigators at church this week and hey loved it. Also we went to he
Temple today and that is why I am writing today. I know that this is
the True Church of Jesus Christ and that I know that we can live with
our Families together forever. I know that the Book of Mormon is true
and that we can truly come closer to God through applying its
teachings. Have a great week.
-Elder Espinoza
Elder Espinoza in front of the Boston Temple.