Monday, August 18, 2014

I'm exactly where Heavenly Father wants me to be.

Well, How’s it going?                                               

It’s been another great week in Adrogué! It’s starting to get warmer already, and while there is sometimes a chilly wind in the air, we can already tell that Summer is on its way! 

Office life is still fun and keeps us busy. There is always a project that has to be done, or an errand that has to be run, but I enjoy it! We distributed supplies to 4 zones this week, and started a big mission wide map project.

As far as teaching, we have continued teaching the Bustamantes, and began teaching the sister of Andrea, a recent convert in the ward. So we are gaining momentum. My companion, Elder Evans and I get a long well. He’s the first companion I’ve had here in Argentina that has helped me be obedient and helped me work hard. We are on the brink of having a lot of success in this area. With only 3 working hours a day, it’s hard to tell, but we are trying hard and we may have found a family to teach. We plan on teaching them a lesson on Wednesday so we’ll have to see if they really want to listen or not. We also got a referral from that family on Thursday, and they plan on coming with us to teach!

Thursday night we had dinner at the Ward Mission Leader’s house, and he has 4 return missionary sons. They were all there and for the first time in my entire mission, our Ward Mission Leader said that I didn’t have a lot of time left on my mission. To make things worse, all of his sons agreed! Usually when I think of the END, it’s a far distant thing. Now I know my perspective is off, and the END is still a long distant thing, but like I told Megan, I don’t want to be like the penguins in the movie “Madagascar”.  They work so hard to get to Antarctica and when they finally get there they realize that there is nothing! I want to make sure that I use the remaining time on my mission well.

As far as the other news goes, I already heard about Robin Williams. I’m pretty sad about it. He was one of my favorites, and he made some of my favorite movies. It’s sad that he went like that too. Everyone in Argentina knows American Actors, so it’s no surprise that I heard about it. I also heard that the country of Argentina is bankrupt--which can’t be good. Inflation is already out of control. We bought a 90 peso pizza today that two weeks ago was only 85, and 2 months ago was only 80. Bus fares are rising as well as little snack foods.  It is just going out of the roof. It hits us hard because we don’t get lunches with members, and so we buy everything. Our monthly allotment of money can’t keep up with the inflation either, so that can  make it fun. Dollars are very good and valuable on the street, but the country is trying to control it, so trading with the bank or taking money off the card is about 8:1, while on the street you can find up to 11:1.

The country in general is amazing. I would never live here permanently, but I love it for now! Food is good, culture is fun, & soccer is fun.  People are generally discouraged with the economy and the lack of jobs, but they are good people. That makes missionary work here a little difficult right now.  It is not just because we are in the office, but in general throughout the mission. We are baptizing people, but nobody is staying long because they are discouraged.  We’re still working hard to keep the church growing.

I hope Allie enjoys her 15th birthday.  Just don’t buy her a car,  that would be cold.....

The spiritual thought of the week is about forgiveness, but more focused on the forgiveness of others. I have thought a lot about the parable that our Savior gives about the king and his servants. One of his servants owes him an unpayable debt, but in an act of mercy, the king forgives the servant his debt, and sends him on his way. We would think that the servant, grateful for the mercy shown to him, would be more merciful to others, but as the parable goes, he goes straight to a fellow servant, and demands that his fellow servant pays him a very small debt. When his fellow servant can’t come up with the money, he is sent to prison until he can pay off the insignificant debt. The king hearing this is angered,  and wondered how can one who received so much mercy show so little? It’s the same with our lives. We have received forgiveness for an unpayable debt that each of us owe. We could not be saved with sin, which all of us have, but our Father, through his mercy sent our Savior, to help us return to him through repentance. How can we, receivers of such mercy, then turn and hold grudges with our friends, or even our enemies? Anything that they do against us is only a small offence compared to the eternal debt we are in to our Father in Heaven. So the lesson that I have learned this week is that I need to just forgive others just as our Savior has forgiven me.

I learned today that I am exactly where my Father in Heaven wants me to be, both physically, and spiritually. In the past, I have always thought that I had to be a perfect missionary from the start, but I wasn’t, so it was hard on me. Over the past  few months, I’ve been able to improve on the things that I can such as make goals for teaching, follow the rules better,  keep my appearance and pench cleaner, and other things like that. I’ve always tried my hardest in everything, and because of that, I am improving which is what He expects of me. It makes me feel good to know that.

Thanks for all of your support! I love you all!

Have a good week!

Elder Chipman

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