Friday, December 15, 2017

week 84

Mommy & All,

"Someones opinion of you does not have to become your reality. You don't have to go through life being a victim." -Les Brown

This week was pretty good. We've just been flying around doing more zone leader stuff and trying to do the work at the same time. We did a lot of service this week while trying to work with Luis at the same time. We found out last Sunday that a family from our ward was moving to another house and they announced that in Priesthood. Luis was the first guy to raise his hand and say he was gonna be there helping out haha that was really cool for Elder Nelson and I to see. So we went there on Friday with Luis and he helped us move them out. He is a way nice guy who just does everything he can to serve others. We also helped the bishop do a foundation to start laying a cement floor and that was an interesting experience too.

Luis is the coolest guy. We have been working a lot with him on completely stopping his smoking and drinking problems that he has. They are really even problems anymore and he hardly ever does it and its been cool to see his progress. Especially in the situation that he lives in. His is 21 and is the youngest of 8. He has 2 older brothers who still live with him and his parents and they aren't the best example. His brothers and dad spend about $1000 pesos a month on cigarettes and they all like to get drunk. His dad literally lives drunk and its crazy. He almost fell on me one time because he was so drunk. He is a funny guy though because every time we go over he tries to talk to us in English. He is also a really nice guy because he always is inviting us over to eat, and he also gave me a watch on my birthday without even knowing it was my birthday haha. His mom also has 2 really bad legs and cant really do anything and Luis is the only one that helps. So he lives in a really hard situation. Anyways Luis told us he wants to get baptized as soon as possible and start his progress in the church. He even talks with us about a mission sometimes which is really cool. He told us some of the things he would do if he went on a mission. One thing I will never forget his he was talking with us about bringing people to church. Sometimes when we go over to his house Sunday morning when he doesn't answer our calls, and he is sleeping and doesn't wake up when we knock, then his mom has to wake him up and its a whole process. He said if that happened to him, he would just go in the street and find some little rocks he could throw at the window to try and wake the person up. Then he said if that didn't work, he would go find a big rock that would go through the window. Then he looked at us and said "but you guys know I'd bless the rock first, so then I know it would do its job so that's fine." Elder Nelson and I died laughing haha he is a really funny guy as well. He has his baptismal date for this coming Saturday, so we are praying all can work out this time. Luis is really someone who has made me more humble and helped me become a better person and missionary.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Week 83



Mommy & All,

"My soul is not contained within the limits of my body, my body is contained within the limitlessness of my soul." -Jim Carey

This week was pretty good. We have been working pretty hard and just flying around trying to work with Luis and trying to get this conference ready for when Elder Bragg came. 

So something I thought was funny happened this week. Like I said we had to fly around to do stuff this week. We found some new investigators and went to teach them a few days after we found them. They were super cool and they listened to what we had to say. We had another lesson about 30 minutes after this one, but we ended up talking longer than we thought. By the time we left the house, we are already 45 minutes late to the other lesson and still had about a 30 minute walk ahead of us. So instead of taking the road, my comp decided to take the back roads which was down the mountain and through the river. Except this wasn't a normal river. It was a river of sewage or crap river as we call it haha that takes all the sewage from the houses and runs it down to who knows where. It literally looks like a natural river in the desert, but its the smell that gets you. Anyways when we got to the river, my comp wanted to cross it but i told him no way. There was a part in the middle that looked a little solid, and you could see animal tracks imprinted so things had walked over it before. So they told me we were going to jump to the middle, then to the other side. I told him no way, but if we went around the river, it would be a lot longer walk. So as we were sitting there on the bank talking, all of a sudden Elder Nelson stops in the middle of his sentence and takes a running jump to the middle part of the river. He told me later that he thought that if we just went Id have to follow him. Anyways he made a perfect jump and made it to the middle. The only problem was that middle part wasn't actually solid and it was just a deceiving look. As he landed, the man sunk into this mixture of human crap up to his shins hahahaha. It was like mud, but dark black and didn't smell like mud. He froze there for about 15 seconds and I was just dying on the other side in tears from laughing so hard. So he climbed out and jumped back across. We found another place to cross further down and ended up making it to that lesson and teaching. So another experience with crap in my mission.

Elder Bragg from the Seventy also came and visited us yesterday and that was awesome. He is such a cool dude and is the NICEST guy I think Ive ever met haha. He came and just talked to us on how we can improve on just the basic missionary stuff like planning and studying. I honeslty learned a ton and it was fun to hear him and his wife talk to us. After the conference, he came and shook every single one of our hands, stopping to ask where we were from and just a little bit about our families or our lives. That is a guy who makes every single person feel like the most important person in the world which we all know is a gift. After he did that he even pulled me aside and asked to take a picture with me which was really cool to do. But I think the thing we all thought was the coolest about him (at least us elders), was that he married his mission presidents daughter haha!! I mean you have gotta have some guts to do that. He served his mission in Mexico and his wife was there with her parents and thats where they met and we all died haha it was great. But it was an awesome experience to have him come talk to us and to recieve all the counsel he gave us. 

Much Love,

Elder Christensen



Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Week 82



Mommy & All,

"I see love as a powerful moving force that, if magnified to its divine potential, will quicken my soul with eternal joy and will exalt me on high." -Max Christensen Sr.

This week I've been reading a lot in Grandpa Max's journal about his mission and his life and this is something I really liked. He talked a lot about love and how to live the gospel, the most important thing we need to have is love. Because if we love God, we are gonna do everything we can to live the commandments, to teach and instruct, and just to help our fellow man or our brothers and sisters. When we love people we do everything we can to help them and when we do that, we are always helping ourselves as well.

This week was okay. On Thursday we had a nice Thanksgiving dinner with our zone and its was pretty cool. We made milanesa and mashed potatoes and bought a bunch of pie. My black Brazilian cousin Elder Otoni turned 19 on Sunday, 2 days after me. So we also celebrated our birthdays during the dinner as well. Its a little crazy being zone leader, especially with the zone being pretty big, but its been good. Also forgot to mention that Elder Vega who I trained in Perito, got made the new secretary when I came up here, so I see him like every other day and that's really cool haha. 

Friday we had my birthday and to celebrate, we had the baptismal interview of Luis. He was supposed to get baptized Saturday, but the really sad part where my birthday went south was when he ended up not passing the baptismal interview. That's the first time I've had someone not pass and it was way sad. My comp elder Nelson and I were shocked and we didn't know what to do. So that part of my birthday sucked haha. That night though some members made me a bunch of pizza and a cake so we got to go over and eat that. With Luis, he just wasn't as ready as we thought, and we are still working and progressing with him, and hopefully we can see his baptism happen in a few weeks. Elder Nelson is the best guy ever haha its been great to get to be with him and he is just like a friend from back home. He keeps me laughing and really helps me to just be a better person and missionary. We have been having a good time trying to hold down the fort here in Comodoro.

Next monday we have Elder Braggs from the 70 coming to talk to the mission, so we will probably not be writing next monday.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen




Week 81



Mommy & All,

"If you wanna thing bad enough to go out and fight for it, to work day and night for it, to give up your time and your peace and your sleep for it. If all that's you dream and scheme is about it, and life seems useless and worthless without it...see its time now it you wanna make this your decade, you've gotta start saying YES to your life, saying YES to your dreams, YES to your upholding future, YES to your potential!! As opposed to saying no!" -Les Brown

First off I just wanna give a huge shout out and thank you to everyone who sent me birthday wishes! I hope everyone enjoys their Thanksgiving this week! 

This week went pretty good. Elder Nelson and I are working nicely together and its been really fun to be with him and getting to know him a better. We have been working a lot with Luis this week. At the beginning of this week, he told us he was for sure gonna get baptized before Christmas, so he put his own baptismal date for the 23rd of December. Elder Nelson and I about that a lot, and we prayed and talked and could just see that he was sooo ready now. So we planned a really good lesson for him and we sat down and told him we were gonna put the goal with him to get baptized the 25th of November. At the beginning he thought that was really soon and that he wasn't gonna be prepared for that. But then we showed him how he already had a testimony, how much he had already accomplished with the problems he had with smoking and drinking, and how he can become completely clean through baptism. We helped him just to believe in himself. And he did! So we accepted the date for the 25th and we are hoping to do his baptism this Saturday which will be really cool.

Last Thursday we had Consejo here in Comodoro where all the zone leaders from the mission come and we have a meeting with Presidente Salerno about what he need to do for the mission, goals we need to set, and what we need to do in our specific zones where we are serving. So I got to see Elder Jensen, Holmes, Ekblad, Hollingsworth, Richards, and Rosas again which was awesome. All those guys have helped me a ton through the mission and have made me a better person. It was also funny to see all of them in Comodoro. That was the first time Elder Rosas, Ekblad, Holmes, and I were all back together in the same place, since almost exacly 1 year ago here in Comodoro when we were all in the same zone. Its crazy to see how far we've all come and how the mission has helped all of us. Its been a great experience thus far. We are just praying we can continue to find success.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen












Monday, November 13, 2017

week 80


Mommy and All,

"Now if you know what you're worth, then go out and get what you're worth, but you gotta be willing to take the hit!!....and not pointing fingers saying you ain't where you wanna be because of him or her or anybody!! Cowards do that and that ain't you! You're better than that!!" -Rocky Balboa

This week was pretty good. We woke up early almost every day, flying around trying to find packages and pick up and send off people from the terminal. It was pretty tiring. We had to go halfway to another city in bus to find a package and my comp and I were like holy crap haha but its been really good. My area is pretty dang big too, probably the biggest area I've been in during the mission thus far. We have walked a ton these first few days too which is normal, but doing circles in the area we have is something else haha. The best part though is that Tuesday, all the city bus drivers here went on strike because they weren't getting paid on time or something like that. So since Tuesday we've taken a ton of taxis or we just have to walk forever haha. The taxi guys love it because they are bringing in all the money right now. Its also just been great being with Elder Nelson. He makes me a better person and we just have a really good time just talking about sports since we both play and we both like the same music and the same artists and its all been really cool and way fun with him. We've really been enjoying eating all the dirt and gnats here as the wind continues to blow haha.

We have been teaching a few people here in our area named Luis and Juan. Luis had a baptism date for this coming Saturday, but he didn't come to church yesterday because he slept in so we have to move his date for next week. He has been really cool though in the few times I've met him. He is 21 and lives in a hard family where is mom has to walk with a walker, his dad and brothers drink and smoke every single second and they don't have a ton of money. He told us his family spends 1000 pesos a month just on cigarettes which is quite a few. Its amazing to see him as he is doing great because he used to smoke and drink and he is climbing out of it really fast and is reading the Book of Mormon. Its great to see the power that the Book of Mormon has in all our lives and how it can affect our daily habits and just makes us want to be better. 

Juan is another investigator who has been to church like 10 times, but cant stop smoking yet. Hes 50 and lives alone and is way nice to us. He talks all the time about how amazing we are as young kids who aren't out smoking or drinking or partying. He is someone who I'm learning a lot from. He walked 40 minutes to church on Sunday which was something I hadn't seen an investigator do in the mission yet. haha  He is awesome.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen






Sunday, November 12, 2017

week 79



Mommy & All,

"If you still talk about your dreams, if you still talk about your goals, but have not yet done anything, just take the first step!!" -Dream

This week was pretty good. Transfers happened which came as a bigger surprise as we thought. As you can see by the pics, the whole basketball team stayed, but I headed out haha. I'm now the new zone leader in Comodoro so we will see how it goes. For the 6th time in my mission, I gotta take the rousing 26 hour bus ride between the island and Comodoro so that's always an nice trip. I can't believe I'm back in this city serving again haha but now I'm on the north side instead of the south. I know all of Comodoro from centro to the south, but I know nothing of the north, so its gonna be a kind of new experience for me getting to know the area, but all in all Comodoro is Comodoro haha.

My new comp is named Elder Nelson from Utah. He played soccer at Olympus down in Salt Lake, then played a year at Westminster before coming on the mish. He is easily the best soccer player out of all the U.S. missionaries in the mission, and the Latins love playing with him since he doesn't suck like most of us (or maybe just me haha). He is really cool and was one of the first missionaries I met when I got to Argentina since he started in Rio Grande too, so its cool now that we are gonna be comps. It is kinda weird though now having a comp that speaks and understands English haha. Out of the 10 comps I've had before him, 8 of them didn't speak or understand anything, and I've only had one comp from the U.S. here with me in Argentina because the other one was Elder Harris in the MTC. So now I get my 3rd U.S. comp and it should be good. He goes home in 2 transfers, so unless they move him I will probably see him till the end. 

I was a little sad to leave the squad down there in Ushuaia there with Holmes, Jensen, Bell, Taylor, and Harper. Its good that they all stayed together though so they can keep playing basketball haha. Bell and I became pretty good friends, and that dude knows a ton about sports so of course we had some good talks. I will still get to see Jensen and Holmes once a transfer when we have leadership counsel here for all the zone leaders, so that's a good thing too. I'm excited to be up here in Comodoro again with Nelson and it should be a really interesting experience to add to the list of my mission haha.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen

Lots of Photos this week.  A few of them are from Max, some from a member and others from the mission site of their Zone meeting where they put on war paint an ran an obstacle course and compared it to preparing to fight the good fight.