Monday, May 18, 2015

Last Letter!

Well, how´s it going?

We had another great week this week, full of exchanges, interviews, and we finished the week with a baptism and a confirmation. Our little buddy Josue got baptized and confirmed on Sunday, and is now a member of the Church! It was a good ceremony, and many members came. His Mom who is already a member was really excited, and happy to see the decision that he made. It was just a really good day.

It’s my last email as a missionary. I really don't know what to say. The past two years have changed my life, and I am so grateful that I could have served for this time. I guess one of the greatest lesson that I learned is that if we do what is right, and keep the commandments, we can be sure that the Lord will guide us and help us become the people he wants us to become. All we have to do is trust in him. Looking back on my mission, at the assignments I've been given, the companions that I've had, I can see the blessings and the changes that have come to my life for the better, even though at the time, I didn't understand why. As we put our trust in him, things won't always be easy, but we can know that there is a reason. We just need to be diligent in doing what is right in order to receive the promised blessings.

Thanks for all of the support, the letters, emails, and prayers. I appreciated them, and they have helped me throughout my time here in Argentina. I was blessed to have so many friends and family supporting me. So thanks for all that you´ve done.

I just want to share my testimony, That I know Christ lives. I know that his atonement is real because I have felt it in my life. I know that he loves us, more than we can imagine, that´s why he always calls for us to repent, be baptized, and change, so that we can be with him again someday. I know that Christ called Joseph Smith to be the first prophet of this modern time, and that the Priesthood or Authority of God was restored to him, in order for us to gain Salvation. I know that the Book of Mormon is a true testimony of Christ, because I have felt the spirit by reading its pages, and have been able to answer great questions that I have had by studying it. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only true and living church on the earth today, and everyone is invited to partake of the blessings that come from baptism, and confirmation of the Holy Ghost. I have come to know these things for myself, and I have no doubt that they are true. I love being a missionary.

Have a great week, and see you all very soon.

Elder Chipman

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Open House & Homecoming

I come home this week!  

You are also invited to come 
hear me speak & report in the Highlands Ranch Ward.

Date: Sunday, May 29, 2015
Time: 11:00 am

Location: Highlands Ranch Stake Center
9800 Foothills Canyon Blvd
Highlands Ranch, Co 80129
(The 2nd building to the back of the parking area and furthest away from the road)

Monday, May 4, 2015

It's strange to be ending my mission

Well how´s it going? 05/04/15

We had a pretty interesting week. It's been busy with lots of meetings and exchanges and honestly, not a whole lot of lessons. But miracles still happened. We are adding a soccer court to the church and because of it, the church hired a few security guards to watch the materials to make sure nobody tries to steal them. On Friday, at a ward lunch, the members invited the guard on duty to participate. Then on Sunday they invited him to participate in the meetings. It was good to see the members so excited to share the gospel, but it really hit me when this same security guard made a comment in Gospel Principles class. He said that he loved what he was learning, and he loved being around the members and he felt a really good spirit here. He is planning to keep on coming, even after the job is done. This just shows that there are a lot of people interested and all they need is an invitation.

With that, the cold is finally coming in. Yesterday night we had to make a nice soup and turn on the furnace full blast. It also has caused every missionary to get the sniffles, but I guess that´s just part of it.

I have some busy weeks ahead of me.  Every day we have a lot to do, with not so many visits and lessons, but lots of exchanges and meetings. On Sunday we have a baptism for a boy named Josué! Next Thursday we get a capital tour, next Friday we go to the Temple, and on Sunday the 17th, they are broadcasting the dedication of the Cordoba Temple to all stake centers. There is no sacrament meeting that day so everyone can enjoy it!

This past week I have been thinking a lot about my mission, because I know it's coming quickly to an end. I felt worried that I haven´t done enough, and so I decided to fast and ask the Lord about what he thinks of my service. Last night, my comp got sick so we finished a little early so he could sleep a bit more. As he slept,  I was able to read through my journals from my mission. During my first year I wrote every day, but during my second year not so much :) In spite of that I was able to read and remember how I felt and I could see how far I  have come, and more importantly, I could see the Lord's hand in everything that has happened in between. I look back at the beginning and I remember the hard times and how the Lord helped me in my first area. I could also see His hand in my first days in the offices.  He was there through all the changes and lessons that I've learned. Let’s just say that by the end of my hour of reading, I felt comfortable and happy.

It’s really a strange feeling to only have two weeks left, but a good feeling. I already see some blessings from my mission and what I have learned. What a blessing it is to be missionary, and a member of this church! It’s really hard to describe how I feel, because I am really excited, but then I feel really nostalgic and sad about leaving Argentina. I don't really know what to expect when I get home, and I don't know if I really understand what it means to go home. I do expect a lot of changes as well as a lot of blessings . I also expect a lot of disappointments and adjustments.  I’ll admit that I´m getting a little tired of all the anticipation with all the missionaries talking about the fact that I'm going home. I feel a lot of how I did before I left the mission. There was a lot of speculation and nothing was certain. Luckily, I know these last two weeks are going to be really quick because we have lots to do!

So yes, I am enjoying my service, I´m working hard, I get up on time, study, and work all day. I enjoy lessons and nothing beats the feeling when someone that we are teaching walks into the church on Sunday morning. But I'm also ready to be with you guys again. If that makes any sense.
I´m also looking forward to summer! It has actually gotten cold, and I'm ready to go back to the sun. I´ve always liked the heat more anyway :)

I love you all! I love the Lord! I love his Church!

Have a good week!

Elder Chipman

Monday, April 27, 2015

What do you do with 15 lbs of Play dough?

Well another week has flown by!

We had a bunch of exchanges, zone meetings, interviews, and just lots of stuff to do. The weirdest thing was for the zone meeting, we wanted to do a game with play dough, so we decided that we were going to make ourselves some playdough for the game. Last P-day we decided to get started and it wasn't too hard, and it didn't take too much time, but by the end, we had about 10-15 pounds of playdough. We ended up making a life sized toddler, just because we could. But we used the playdough to demonstrate an aspect of the atonement. In the end, the spirit was strong, and we were all uplifted, but man, it really was a lot of play dough.

We are doing well, but its hard to find people to teach right now. I don't even know why, but it’s just what we are going through. We have a few investigators, but not a lot are actually progressing, and so we are having difficulties filling up our days with things to do. Let’s just say, we've knocked on a lot of doors. Luckily we live in a great ward, and they are all praying and helping us with referrals. Honestly, Alejandro Korn has the best members in the world! Every week we have a Family Night in the Church for new converts, less actives, and investigators. A recent convert family always comes, and their 9 year old daughter invited her friend at school to come to the Family Night. They had a fun time, and we will pass by their home this week.

We have also been visiting an inactive this week. When I first came here, this member was super faithful and active. But through a course of events, he fell into inactivity. Last tuesday we visited and he said that he didn't want anything to do with the church, he was never coming back. We prayed hard, and not only asked for the spirit, but really looked for how to help this member. It was exhausting, but by the end, we were able to help him understand repentance and the atonement. At the end of the lesson he said he was coming back! But when we passed by yesterday, he was again saying that he doesn't want to come back, its too late, he just can´t believe in forgiveness. It made me think a little bit about the balance of light and darkness in our lives.

The obvious truth is that light and darkness cannot be in the same place in the same time. If we listen to the spirit, and invite the spirit into our lives, we are filled with light, when we listen to the adversary and not do what we are supposed to , we are filled with darkness. This hermano, after our lesson, felt the spirit and was filled with light. But as we left, he didn't do anything to keep this light in his life, he didn´t read the scriptures, or pray, or sing hymns, or serve others, or even have a good conversation with another person. His light, left. Now when we left yesterday, he again wanted to come back to church activity, but this time with a fervent commitment to read, and pray, and do what he was supposed to do to keep this light in his live.

So if we feel sad, or depressed, or if our light is filled with darkness, the best thing to do is bring light into our lives. Something so simple can make a big difference.

Lately, I find myself sitting back and just trying to soak in the Argentine scenes It’s weird that there is a chance that I will never be back, but it’s the reality of these things. I just hope I can remember what it’s like here.

You only have to write me two more times, so that will be nice! I am still calling on Mother´s Day! They gave me four calls on my mission so I´m using every one of those calls! Haha!

Anyway, thanks for all your prayers and support, I love you guys and miss you all.

Have a good week!

Elder Chipman

Monday, April 20, 2015

3 Hard and 3 Best Parts of Serving a Mission for Me

How´s it going everybody!

It's been another good week in Alejandro Korn. Actually, honestly, the beginning of the week started off pretty slow. Last week we had to drop practically every single one of our investigators, so this week our teaching pool was very limited. We spent a lot of time knocking on doors and doing contacts in the streets. We found a little bit of success, but its difficult to find people to teach that way. All of that prepared us for a miracle that happened on Saturday. We went to contact one of the people we talked to in the street a few weeks ago. He was still friendly and so we set an appointment on Saturday. We dropped by for the appointment and he let us in. His name is Mariano and we talked about the apostasy and the restoration, and why it was important to him. It was a good lesson, and we invited him to be baptized the 24th of May. The next day, in church, I was getting ready to give a talk, when he walked in with his two daughters. They stayed the whole time, and at the end, his daughters came running up to him with the pictures they colored in Primary. They all loved church. It was a great day.

I´m grateful to be a missionary, it has been the best decision that I have made. I love being a member of this church, and I love sharing what I know to be true with others. Despite all the challenges I can't think of another place where I would rather be.
So this week I've had a little bit of time to think about what the hardest and best parts of the mission are for me.  The main answer is that every missionary has his own challenges that are unique to him and his mission where he is serving. Everybody has a different mission, the Lord knows us personally, and so He gives us challenges and blessings that are very personal to our own lives. The following is some insight into my mission:
3 most difficult things about the mission:
1. It’s exhausting! You work 16 hours a day, and the 8 hours of sleep you do get doesn't seem to be quite be enough. You walk or bike all day, in the sun, heat, rain, snow, cold, and you have to keep doing something. So it’s very physically, mentally, spiritually exhausting.
2. There are more disappointments in the mission than moments of joy. While the moments of joy make the disappointments worth it, they are separated by people not showing up to appointments, not completing commitments, not coming to church, not reading, or just deciding that they don't want to follow Christ. It makes you tired, and really sad at times.
3. Just getting started. The start of the mission is hard. It’s a whole new life style, schedule, wardrobe, and way of life. You miss your family, friends, and if you are learning a language, you can't even communicate with the dogs. I look at the beginning as the hardest part, but that is where I learned the most.
3 Things that make the mission great!
1. You can actually see the gospel work. While there are many disappointments, when people do follow the gospel, you see them change. You can see the evidences of the gospel as they read, pray, and grow. You help them be happy and in turn, it makes you feel incredible. As their testimony grows, yours does too. It makes all the disappointments worth it.
2. You learn so much. I have learned so much about our Father in Heaven, about Christ, about the Gospel. I have learned about the world, and why the commandments are important. I've learned about faith, virtue, hope, and numerous other things. You can learn things in the mission that are impossible to learn at home.
3. It’s just a great experience. Now that I'm near the end, I can speak a new language, I know a new culture, I understand others better, I have  friends from Spain, Ecuador, Peru, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, New Zealand, and other countries. Its just a great feeling to be a missionary.
I Hope this helps, it’s hard to explain why its so great and awesome to serve a mission, because It’s just a feeling that I have. Like I said, its really personal, but I know that every missionary is going to have hard things, and awesome things. It’s just part of the package!
Thanks for everything, and for all of your support!


Elder Chipman

Monday, April 13, 2015

Fall Colors!

Hows it going everybody?

It’s getting a little colder, but still some days I sweat like a pig. I like it here because they still have seasons in Argentina. There is a park in the center of Alejandro Korn, and all the trees are that golden fall color which is really nice.

My new companion is great. He likes to cook, which I like, and he works really hard, which I like as well. We will get a lot of work done this transfer. We run every morning. We don’t go very fast, but its something so I am happy and grateful.

We had a very successful week in Alejandro Korn! While we have been dropping a lot of investigators due to their lack of progression, we have also been able to find many new ones to teach. Including a big family that we were able to contact on Thursday. There is also a young couple, and a cousin of a member who was just passing by one day.  We were also able to talk with Sebastian again and get him going. He needs just a push, and he will be a very good member. But its just that little push that he lacks right now.

I love teaching the first missionary lesson, and I think it’s my favorite one by far. It’s when we teach about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which includes Prophets, Christ´s Church, the Great Apostasy, and the First Vision. It’s really cool to be able to testify of the Book of Mormon everyday. It’s probably one of the best parts of my calling that I enjoy.

We taught the Restoration a lot this week, that´s why its been on my mind. We were also able to see Gabriel´s confirmation this week in church. After the meeting I asked him how he felt, and we was just smiling. He said that he felt like Superman. That made me laugh but it also helped me understand the role that the Holy Ghost plays in my life. While it doesn't exactly make me physically like Superman, it’s a quiet gift that has taught me, guided me, and blessed me many times since my conversion. I am grateful to have the gift of the Holy Ghost in my life, especially now more than ever.

I think that Allie is doing fantastic with her running for this early in the season. Honestly, she only has about 4 more meets before State, so she is exactly where she wants to be. I hope she does well at the KU relays this week.

Megan told me a bit about her job & it sounds pretty Epic! hehehehe (Megan got a job with Epic software in Madison, WI).  I know nothing about Madison, but I bet it will be a fun adventure with lots of Cheese and stuff that Wisconsin has. That will be a lot of fun for her, and now she can see what her future has in store for her.

I´m doing really well. I'm getting excited to come home but it really doesn't seem like I am that close to finishing. I don't think I truly understand what's actually going to happen when I finish things up these next few weeks. Being a missionary is just part of my life right now. I am okay, and happy, and working hard.

Thanks for all of the support and love, I love you guys and hope that you have a great week!

Elder Chipman

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Starting my Last Transfer

How´s it going?

Well, I'm starting the final transfer of my mission, and I can already tell its going to be a good one. My new companion is Elder Olsen from Utah. He was in my district in La Plata, and he is a work horse, so I know that we will be getting a lot done these next few weeks. I will still be here in Alejandro Korn.

Honestly, I have a lot of mixed emotions right now. I am really sad that Elder Flinders had to leave. He was a great companion, and I´ll miss him. But at least he´s going to BYU and we already have some basketball pick-up games planned. I´m also really excited for my new companion, Elder Olsen. I´m excited to see you guys again, but then today, I had to say goodbye to some friends in the mission that I will never see again. It’s just a field of mixed emotions, but It’s all good in the end.

That being said, we enjoyed a great weekend of General Conference. We watch it in English because they have a room set up just for us. It’s nice. But when the speakers speak in Spanish, we would change the channel to Spanish so we could listen to their voices. I guess it’s the translators that drive us crazy. But I loved the conference. Every Talk seemed to teach me something that I needed to know, or answered questions that I have had. One of my greatest testimonies of conference comes from the fact that even though the talks are for the whole world, they touch and guide the individual soul. But in the end, if we do not apply what we have learned, repent and do better of the things that we have realized we need to do better on, we are not taking advantage of the Conference. When we don´t apply the teachings of the prophets, can we really sustain them in their callings? I know that the church of Jesus Christ has been restored, and that He is at the head of his church, but it is under the restored organization of a Prophet and Apostles can the Lord let us know as a whole what we need to do.

I love all you guys, thanks for your support and prayers. I hope that you're happy and healthy. Have a good week!

Elder Chipman

Monday, March 30, 2015

I've been thinking a lot about the word "Truth"

Hola Todos! March 30, 15

It’s been another great week in Alejandro Korn.

Well honestly, it hasn't been a very long time since the last time I´ve written, but a lot has happened. First off, Gabriel was baptized yesterday! It was a nice and peaceful ceremony, and while we were getting everything ready, two woman showed up just because they were passing by and wanted to know more about the church. The Relief Society president and members were quick to help them, show them around, and they were able to stay for the baptism! We've been working hard and have found a few more people to teach. We´ll see what comes from it, but I see some good things happening here in Alejandro Korn.

We've also been working a lot with the "Because he lives" video produced by the church.
We have pass-along cards specifically made for it, and we report how many people we have showed the video too, and how many cards we've passed out. So it’s a very organized system. The church is really focusing on it, and on Easter Sunday, they have a mini version of the video that they are going to use as the primary ad on Youtube (You know that 15 second video before every Youtube video?). So They are really trying to get it out there.

Other than that, I've been thinking a lot about the word "Truth". Its a word that as a missionary, I use a lot, but sometimes I don´t know if I really understand what it means. In Doctrine and Covenants 93, it explains truth as things as they really are, were and are yet to come. A good example of truth is the law of Gravity. On this earth we are held under the truth of Gravity, what goes up, must come down. It doesn't matter if I resent it, or don't believe in it, or try not to follow it, If I jump from an airplane, I will fall. This being the case, there is only one truth, and anything that is not part of this truth, is a lie. So if this really is the case, we best be sure that we know the truth, or learn it so that we do not stray from that which is right. Here are some things that I have learned that are true. I know that Christ lives, I know that he is the Son of God and the appointed Messiah. He lived a perfect life, and was a perfect example. He suffered for our sins, sicknesses, and imperfections. He died on the Cross by crucifixion. He rose the third day as a perfect, resurrected being. These things are true, it's what happened, and its just the way it is, nothing can change it. So it’s best that we learn more about it and how it applies to our lives, that we may more understand the truth about God, Jesus, and his church on the earth today. There are many truths that I do not know, but I know this much. I hope that we can all enjoy this Easter season, and remember and reflect why this time of year is so special, even 2000 years after His resurrection occurred.

Well, hope that all made sense...

Other than that, there isn´t too much to report. It’s the last week for my companion before he goes home. He´s been working really hard despite being so close to the end of his mission, and he´s been a good example and a good companion. I'm bummed that he has to go, but there´s not much I can do about that.

It sounds like Allie is running as fast as ever and that´s a really good thing! She shouldn't be too disappointed that she didn't break the school record her first race in the season. A chill pill and a bit of perspective would do her well, but like I said last week, that attribute probably helps her run well.

I got my flight schedule today and it kinda surprised me because Elder Flinders got his on Wednesday and he leaves a week from today. We have a new senior couple in the offices and they are probably still trying to figure things out. But there you go, it’s official now.  I'm honestly excited to come home, I love it here, but its been awhile since I've seen you guys! I find out who my next companion is on Friday, so we´ll see what happens.

Defluffification is going well. Many people have said that I look skinnier, so there you go. I am still about 195-200 but it’s a lot better than the 210-215 that I was about a year ago.

Overall, I´m doing great. I have lots of energy, I am happy, I get along with my companion, and there´s really nothing to complain about. I look forward to these next few weeks because they are going to be great!

I love you all, I love the Lord, I love his Church!

Have a great week, thanks for all the support, Happy Easter!

Elder Chipman

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

We have a baptism

How´s it going?

It’s been another great week in Alejandro Korn. Its started off as a warm week but then right as we hit the first day of Fall, the temperatures dropped about 10 degrees Celsius. I don´t know how much that is in Fahrenheit, but its a significant change. But I'm enjoying the cooler weather, it makes it easier to travel in.

It sounds like Allie had a rockin first high school race on Saturday. She was really flying if she already almost broke Karlee´s school record for the mile!

It’s been a good week but with lots of ups and downs. We had to drop a lot of investigators that just weren't progressing, which is not always fun. In fact, we dropped all but about 3. That being said, one of those three passed their baptismal interview and is going to be baptized this Sunday! His name is Gabriel and we've been teaching him for about 2 months now. He´s about 21 years old and is the Bishops son-in-law. He´s got a lot of support from the ward, and we are excited about his decision. We were also able to find a few other people who are willing to let us visit and teach them. Overall, things are moving forward, which is what matters.

We have a really busy week coming up because it’s my companion´s last week of the mission. I guess that time catches up to everyone.

I got a little sick on Saturday and Sunday. Just a headache, fever, and sore throat. My body was a little achy, but I took some ibuprofen a few times during the day and I was good. Now I feel just fine. Defluffication (weight loss) took a hit this week because of sickness, but I´m back at running again so it should be a better week.

This week I learned a lot about the Christ-like attribute "Hope". It’s more than just a desire or a wish, but as seen in the scriptures, it is something that carries a lot more power. In fact, faith itself is a hope for things not seen but that are true. In fact, Spanish has helped me learn a lot about this word hope. In Spanish, the word "esperar" has three meanings. It can mean "to wait", "to expect", and "to hope". I don´t think that these three verbs, wait, expect, and hope, would be combined into one word unless they had some sort of relation with one another. And they do. I like to think of it like this, that having hope = expecting it to happen= willing to wait for it. I am grateful for the gospel in my life, because it gives me the greatest hope of all. My source of hope, and honestly, everybody's source of hope is the resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ. Because he overcame all things, I now have the hope for the Resurrection of all men, which means that I expect it to happen someday, and I'm willing to wait for it. Because of Him, it doesn't matter what happens, I can always have hope for that day, and I can always wait for his timing.

I guess thats what I´m trying to get at here. That especially during this time of year, when we remember His resurrection from the dead, and especially in a world that doesn't have much to hope for, I would like us to remember the source of all hope, and the power that comes when we are willing to trust him, expect his help, and be willing to wait for his timing.

I love you guys and hope you have a great week! Overall, I´m now healthy and happy. Thanks for all of your prayers and support.

Elder Chipman

Monday, March 16, 2015

Week full of bikes, sun, heat, painting, pizza, and some great lessons!

How´s it going everybody?!

It’s been another great week in Alejandro Korn. We had a week full of bikes, sun, heat, painting houses, pizza, and some great lessons. Missionary work is still grinding out here in Korn. There are lots of disappointments and challenges, but we always have a few moments that keep us going and they make it all worth it. We are working with a few people right now, preparing for their baptism the 29th of March. The first is Gabriel, he is the son-in-law of the bishop, and we've been working with him for a few months. Honestly, he is a rockstar. We taught him the Word of Wisdom this week along with tithing, and fasting. He is only 20 years old, so topics like not eating for 24 hours could be challenging, but he accepted the commandments and is progressing well. Andres on the other hand had been doing well, but we got a phone call today saying that he wasn't so sure if he wanted to keep taking the lessons We’ll visit him this afternoon and see if we can help.

Lately, we've been struggling with not many people attending church. We hope that everybody is just still on summer vacation, but we're kind of at the end of that time of year. While the school year is ending over there, it’s just getting started here. That being said, we are finding more and more people to teach and we hope that next Monday and Tuesday we will be able to find lots of people to teach.

In my studies this week, I was able to read about Christ´s visit to the Americas. I love this part of the Book of Mormon, because its an great way to understand the Character and Personality of Christ. While he is very stern when it comes to the commandments, his love is unavoidable as he healed their sick and blessed each one of their children one by one. I feel like I am much closer to my Savior as I read these passages, and it helps me look forward to the day when I can see him again. I know that Christ lives and loves us. If you at all doubt this fact, I invite you to read 3 Nephi 17 in the Book of Mormon. It will help you understand his love for you a little more.

I’m running out of things to write about so it must be getting pretty close to the end. I honestly don't feel like the end of the mission is really that close, because I feel like I will always just be doing what I´m doing.  My companion always just says that it is the reality of it.  Things are ending, and there´s no escaping it. He finishes in only 3 weeks, so we´re both wrapping things up. He´s probably one of my favorite comp of my mission, and we are working super hard. We both have the same worries about college & sports so it is a common conversation in the pension at night. He´s a good friend!

As far as my defluffication process, I ran about 4 miles this morning and I've lost about 3 pounds. I'm still heavier than I want, but  I´m at least going in the right direction.  I just need to be diligent. I guess I'm vain, but I'm also still only 21 so it should be easier for me to drop the fluff--I hope :)

Thanks for all that you do, and for all of your support. I love you guys! Have a good week!  I miss you like crazy, but I'm really happy where I am right now.

Oh, and by the way, there is going to be a holiday next Monday and Tuesday, so my next p-day will be next Wednesday. They have a holiday almost every other week here, so I don’t even know what holiday it is.

Love you guys!

Elder Chipman

Monday, March 9, 2015

Recipe for happiness

Well, it’s been another great week in Alejandro Korn! What more is there to say? That and Peyton Manning is returning this next season to play for the Broncos.  I'm ok with that! I would take an old Peyton Manning over Tim Tebow anyday. I had more stress during those games than I have felt during my whole mission!

Our investigator Andres is doing very well! We were able to teach him about the word of wisdom, and he fully understood it and said that he was willing to live it. We passed by a few days later, and he hadn´t smoked or drank alcohol in that period of time. He´s making giant strides and is excited to be baptized in a few weeks. Our other investigators are doing well too. Sebastian is still working out some problems, but every time we visit, he is more and more animated to do what is right. Overall, things are going really well.

I was also able to go on an exchange with my mission friend, Elder Hansen, this week. We taught a less active member the Ten Commandments. The spirit that we felt in that  simple lesson really surprised me. I expect to feel the spirit when we teach of the First Vision, the Book of Mormon, or the Plan of Salvation, but this simple lesson about the Ten Commandments helped me realize the importance of the small and simple things, and the importance of being obedient to all of the commandments that the Lord gives us. Sometimes we forget that it is by small and simple things that great things come to pass. Obedience includes not only the big commandments, like "Thou shalt not Kill" or "Thou shalt not Steal", but it also keeping the sabbath day holy, and honoring one's parents. I like to think what would happen if we all kept only just these 10 commandments. The world would change for the better! The commandments are the recipe of happiness, and they help protect us from the unwanted consequences that come from poor decisions.  In the scriptures we are promised not only happiness in this life, but eternal life in the life to come. Sounds pretty good if you ask me!

Other than that, life is pretty good, we are working hard, and I´m able to run in the mornings, so I´m happy. I ran about 3 miles this morning, so there has been some  improvement. I did the math the other day and I was going about 6:15-6:20 pace. Now granted I am still at about -50 feet below sea level and I was pretty gassed afterwards, but still, I'm happy that I don't have to start ALL over again. Besides that, everything seems to be working out well right now. There are always challenges, and sometimes I feel so tired that I can't even get out of my chair, but everytime I do, its always worth it.

Thanks for all of your support and prayers, I love you guys and hope you have a good week!

Elder Chipman

Monday, March 2, 2015

I have the best life ever!

Hows it going?

Funny story, at lunch on Saturday, one of the kids went onto facebook and showed us that dress that you told me that is all over the internet. It’s black and blue to me, but yes the plague has already reached us down here too. It just shows that Allie and Dad are crazy because they think it is white and gold.  hahaha! I do wish I could've seen the  funny story about the runaway llamas in Phoenix!

It’s been another great week in Alejandro Korn, Argentina. It was really successful! We found a lot of new people to teach and some of our other investigators are beginning to progress more toward baptism. Sebastian is fighting back and determined to keep trying until he gets it right, and we are determined to help him, so he´s doing well! We also found many others, all of them men, which is weird....usually only the woman are interested, but the ward needs more priesthood, so I’m not complaining. One investigator was referred to us from a Young Woman in the ward. Her neighbors´wife passed away a few months ago and he was having a hard time. We were able to visit with him and talk about the plan of Salvation. At the end, he told us about his desire to be with his wife again in the Celestial Kingdom. Its amazing the power that is in the gospel, and the happiness and hope it brings. We were also able to visit with another referral that we received from a member. His name is Martín and we were able to teach him the first lesson in the house of the member. We shared the restoration lesson, and he promised us to read the book of Mormon, and pray about it. I have lots of high hopes for the both of them. Let’s be honest, I have the best life ever!

I also learned a lot about about prayer this week. Many times we ask God for things that we want to happen. This is not a bad thing, in fact he says that if we ask we shall receive. But we need to be ready to receive the answer. Sometimes we need to ask for the enabling power to help us accomplish what we desire. I love this part about prayer, because it allows us to grow and make decisions, but it will also enable us to do the right thing. We will have to do a lot of the work on our own, but just as the Lord blessed the people of Alma with their burdens that they were not able to feel them on our backs, our burdens will be lifted, and we will be able to accomplish a whole lot more than we could without divine help.

Just so you know, I left the Internet Café last Monday and slapped my forehead because I forgot to wish you two a happy birthday! So I prayed that you would have a very good day and have a miracle happen for your birthday. Just so you know, I didn’t forget, well, when I was writing I did, but I didn't forget for too long :)  I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed your birthdays. I can tell that I’ve been away from home a long time because I don’t even recognize the restaurant you went too or what a Bosu Ball is, but that´s ok.

Hey Dad, here´s a picture of someone who also had a birthday on February 28th. Her name is  Nona, and if you want to know how old she is, just look at the cake!  Lets just say, you've still got plenty of time!

Speaking of old, I feel pretty old in the mission with all these 19-year-olds coming in.  It is a whole lot more fun being old and used to everything, however.  Then when you told me the kids who are going to BYU this fall, I now just feel old in general.

Mom, thanks for sending some of Dad´s mission pictures. I honestly got a little emotional, looking at them because he´s always been older to me, and seeing him doing what I´m doing right now makes me feel, happy. But I didn´t cry, don´t worry about that :) Bolivia looks like it is a really poor country. The houses that Dad was in are like some of the ones I've entered here, but here only the poor people live like that.  It was fun seeing you do the same exact thing that I am doing!

David as a missionary in Bolivia

I love Argentina, but I'm excited to see you all again. I will be home before we know it! Then I can tell you all of my stories :) Nothing dangerous has happened to me, but I just don't remember everything when I'm writing on Mondays.

Thanks for all of your prayers and support. Being a missionary in Argentina is the greatest.  There is no other place I would rather be!

Love you all!

Elder Chipman