Monday, February 24, 2014

MIRACLES! | week 73

Well Hellooooooo!

Thanks for the Email Mom! And for the pictures too Im excited to see Riley play his senior year in 2015 haha. Well I have so much to tell you guys this week. As we started the week the Assistants called and challenged us and the zone to find 20 new investigators this week. That is a very high goal haha. After getting a slow start to the week with the Temple trip on Tuesday we started seeing miracles.
 On Wednesday we were witnesses of one of them. Its kind of a long complex story but the Lord used us and another less active family to accomplish it. Lets go back two weeks when Elder G and I had a distict impression to knock one of the streets in our area. At the end of the street we found a less active family, la familia D. They let us in and despite some tough problems we were able to gain there confidence and set a return visit for Wednesday the 19th. The D family has two young boys. M the oldest who is 18 used to be very active in the church. Ok...... moving onto the other side of the story. Im not sure if you remember the F family that we found a while back knocking doors. Well we always visit them on Tuesdays and due to our Temple trip we had to move the appointment to Wednesday  Well K F the oldest son doesnt live with his mom but he lives with his grandparents who are also members. K had a dream and many other impressions that he needed to be at his moms house on Wednesday.  We arrived and he immediately asked us if we knew of a Familia D. We said we had found them a couple of weeks ago. As we looked at our agendas we remembered that we had the appointment set up with them just an hour later. We invited K to come with us and we were able to vistit the D family. When we arrived they were going through a really hard time with problems in the family. About midway through the lesson the visiting teachers knocked on the door and came in! K shared his testimony and thanked M who he had not seen in years for the example he had been for him and his family. Because of his example and help K came back to church and is going to be headed on the mission. The spirit filled the whole house and everyone was crying haha. We were all able to share our testimonies and I shared mine. God loves ALL of his children and he sends angels both heavenly and in the form of his children here on earth to go and rescue others. The whole D family thanked us and K for following the spirit. Even the Visiting Teachers were inspired to come to the aid of this family. The very next day M working with us all day! Whew its hard for me to put this story into words hahah. God loves his children and ALWAYS sends help. Even if it means a young man from across the capital.

This experience Wednesday got our momentum going and carried us throughout the week. We had great lessons with M and the R Ortiz family. We set baptismal dates with the Familia R too! On sunday we had one of the members of our ward help us with his mini bus to go and pick up investigators. Hermana F and her daughter M were able to come to church for the first time, the husband finally let them go! We also stopped by and picked up the R family and they came for the first time too! But our biggest suprise came while greeting people at the front door M and her three daughters walked in!!!!!!!!! She had told us that she wasnt going to be able to come haha. Church went great and everyone loved it. In total we had 7 investigators there all for the first time!
On Sunday afternoon we were getting worried because we still had to find 8 new investigators to reach the goal of 20! Hahahaha After going back to the contacts we had made in the week we just started knocking all the doors we saw. Miraculously we taught a new family of four and two other contacts making it 18. At 7:30 we had our correlation meeting with the bishop and our ward mission leader. They knew about our goal and we told them we were two short. We left at 8:30 and our ward mission leader took us to a family he had known nearby. And with five minutes to spare we found the last two investigators we needed hahaha! The mom and dad were baptized like ten years ago and we began teaching them and two of there teenage children who are not members. I have never worked to hard to hit a goal in my life hahahah. That doesnt even touch the surface of all the stuff that happened to us this week. Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven. It was so cool to see the heavens open this week! The Lord helped us so much this week. There were so many moments when we just wanted to say alright no more hahaha. With Faith and the Lords help we can do anything the Lord asks of us.
We are so excited right now Haha. 
I know this is the Lords work. We have zone conference tomorrow with President Watts and are excited to receive instruction and guidance. I love you all so much. I wish I could write better and do justice to all these experiences haha. I love my Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ. I am so grateful for this gospel in my life and in the life of my family. Remember the important things in life, do your best everyday, and God will fill and enrich every part of our lives. Have a great week!!!!!!

Con amor

Elder Hughes

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Sunburns and Temple trips! | week 72

Hey guys!

Well sorry I wasn't able to email you guys yesterday we got a phone call from the assistants on Sunday night letting us know that we would be going to the temple on tuesday with the zone so we had a normal work day yesterday. 

Thanks for all the pictures and info on Heidi`s memorial run! Man I wish I could have been there too support and run. There is always next year. Thanks for running in my name Mom and Dad. I love you guys. I keep Heidi in my heart everywhere I go. I still have a hard time imaging coming home and not finding her there in Rocklin. I know that Heavenly Father has a plan for each and every one of his children. And that the sting of death is swallowed up in the love and atonement of Christ who overcame death and rose again on the third day.

Congratulations on all the new callings! Dad i had a feeling you would be back there with all the young men again! And Mom I'm sure you will revolutionize the ward bulletin haha. Remember its not important where we serve but how we serve! 

Well last week was another good one for me and Elder G. We started things off great on Tuesday and Wednesday with alot of really good lessons! We kept teaching M and really felt the spirit stongly on Tuesday when we taught her about the Restoration! She has been praying and even fasting for an answer. The R Family is progressing well too, we have seen a change in them. They seem happier and get really excited when we come to visit. 

Valentines day was a struggle for us haha. Not alot of people home but we made the best of it knocking on alot of doors!

My companion and I both got our summer "Cuts" the number two. Its starting to heat up here in Guatemala. Its bringing back memories of  last year sweating it out in Llano largo. Elder G keeps us laughing, he is one of the funniest people I've ever met haha. This morning at 5.30 when the alarm went off he just jumped on my bed yelling "Im so happy" as we got out of bed and headed to the temple haha.

The temple was awesome today! The last time I went was about 7 months ago! I got to see the new temple video for the first time. So powerful. So much emotion. If you havent been lately I recommend going. There is a peace that is found in the Temples of God. What an amazing place to learn and grow.

Well alot of the things I do can be pretty repetitive haha. I have gotten pretty used to running around and solving problems. I love the fast pace though because it keeps me busy and the time goes by quick.

I loved reading an article in the Ensign this week for Febuary. Elder Scott gave a talk about how to live your life with purpose and meaning. Thinking alot this week I have been so blessed to be a member of this church. The gospel of Christ has shaped my life and through the atonement I have been changed. I have a long way to go and we are all in the enduring to the end part. I know that if we do the little things that bring the spirit into our lives and into our homes we will be blessed with peace on earth and eternal life in the world to come. I love my Savior and I love his gospel. I know that families are sealed for time and all eternity in the temples of the lord. I am so grateful for my family and the many wonderful people who have touched my life.

I hope you all have a great week! I love you all so much. Keep moving forward. "The future is as bright as your faith"

Con amor,

Elder Hughes

Monday, February 10, 2014

Brazilian Nights | week 71

Whats up guys! Im happy to hear that the rain has finally come. I have been keeping California in my prayers the last couple weeks. I know what you mean mom about this time feeling different. I feel like time is going by so fast right now. I didnt even feel this week it went so fast. Congrats to Rachel on the mission call! The video came through and I was able to watch it! Im so proud of her and her decision to serve. Riley, Brother you are looking OLD! haha I love your jacket! 

Well on Wendsday change conference I got my new Companion Elder G from Brazil. I had already met him earlier on in my mission. He was in zona las victorias as a zone leader and they sent him here. He has about a year in the mission and is just awesome. Tons of energy to work and we had one of the best weeks in a long time. We just laugh and work as hard as we can. haha.

The lord has really been blessing us this week. Everyday we have prayed to know where we should contact and look for new people to teach. Without fail everyday he has guided our footsteps. Last night we found a new investigator named M. We walked into a members house and began talking with her. She is going to an evangelical church right now but was coming to church a couple years ago and already has a book of mormon. She got really excited as we began to talk to her about the church and the book of mormon. She told us she had read it and knows its true! We set up an appointment for this week with her and her family.

Hermana E, a less active we have been working with came to church with us for the first time in over a year. We found this hermana and have been working with her and her family. Her grandaughter started receiving us after I taught her a little bit of english hahaha. Here in Asuncion we have been finding and seeing miracles with alot of less actives. C is also doing great and will probably get a calling here soon.

I feel great right now. The Lord has begun to bless us more here and my companion and I are working well together. I love this work and It is a priviledge I have to serve for these two short years. Mom I loved your quote. We are all in the "enduring to the end" stage of our lives and its a journey. Alot of times we fall and come up short in life but that is inevitable. It is more important how many times we get up dust ourselves off and keep moving forward. Our loving heavenly father gives us a new sunrise everyday. We can all repent and begin again moving forward and being better than what we were yesterday. I want to bear my testimony of the infinite power of the Saviors atonement. The Saviors arms are outstreched to all of us. I am a witness of the miracle that occurs when we truly repent and come unto Christ. He has healed me and I have seen his power take effect in the lives of many people here in Guatemala. Run to Christ and he will give you rest. For his burden is light and his yoke is easy.

I love you all so much. Thanks for all that you have done for me. Remember to smile and help everyone around you.

Elder Hughes

Monday, February 3, 2014

Hola | week 70

Happy Monday!

I'm glad you guys are doing well! Super bowl was a blow out eh. It has been a long time since I've seen a football game haha. Some big news with the ward split! We have been talking about that for a long time now. How big is Rocklin 1st ward now? Im kind of split too haha Its going to be weird coming back to a different ward. Tell all the ward members that I send my love and think of them all the time. I was so blessed to grow up in Rocklin 1st ward. How did everyone react to all the changes? How are all the new callings going to work now?

Well we had change calls last night and... I'm staying in palmita haha. My companion has a change which was really suprising for all of us. I'm going to get my new companion on Wednesday at the change conference. I think there is a chance I'm going to be with a zone leader that already has some time so we will see! I'm pretty excited because it gives me an opportunity to reset and work harder. This is going to be my sixth change here as a Zone Leader and It is a blessing because I have been able to get to know all the stake leaders and most of the members of this stake. 

This last week of the change was CRAZY! haha We were running around all week. On Tuesday we had leadership meeting with President Watts. I always learn so much from him and the other Zone leaders. President and Hermana Watts both shared their testimonies about the Book of Mormon. Powerful. On Wednesday we prepared a report on the zone for Stake mission correlation with President Watts and the Stake Presidency. We spent most of the night there looking at how we can improve the work in Palmita. On thursday I had the oppourtunity to do divisions with Elder B, he came to my area. We had a really cool experiece walking to an appointment in the evening we were passing by a members house when we saw Hermana M walking in. She just halted in front of the door. As we walked up to say hi she was crying. She just looked at us and started crying really hard. We immediately went inside with her and she asked us for a blessing. She has been having a really difficult last couple weeks. Her mom is in the hospital and her grandmother just passed away. She is also the relief society president and teaches seminary. The spirit guided the blessing and we talked with her for a little bit afterward. Just another example when Heavenly Father has put us in the right place at the right time. I dont know how many times this has happened in my mission with members, investigators and missionaries. God knows his children and he will always send help. Many times he sends other people to bless and help us. For this reason it is so important that first we have the spirit and second we serve those around us. We do not know if we are answering someones prayer. Friday was eventful too I was visiting with some Elders in our zone at our weekly planning session we do every friday. One of the Elders in the zone has been sick for a long time and hasnt gotten better. We have sent him to doctors and done tons of tests. I decided to talk to Hermana Watts and we decided to take him to the hospital. Since me and my companion are the only ones who can have a cell phone here I went with him to keep President updated. So I spent most of the day with him in the hospital. The doctors still could not find out what has been wrong and we left without any answers. But they gave him some new medicine. We are praying he gets better soon! Whew! Been running around all week haha.

Alot of the missionaries here have changes! They are going to open two new zones outside of the Capital which should be really exciting.

Im excited to begin a new change and take things to the next level. I feel like im in the prime of my mission and I have to take advantage of each and every day. I have seen alot of changes in my life and the lives of others. The Lord is hastening his work and It is a huge blessing I have to be able to serve him in this special time. I remember in the letter i received with my call it says missionaries are blessed to feel "greater joy that you have yet experienced". These words are true. To me there is nothing better than contacting people and sharing the gospel that has blessed my entire life and my family. God lets us experience this joy in our missions when we serve with all our heart mind and strength.

I love this work and I love you all. Thanks for your support. Have a great week and Keep Smiling!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Elder Hughes