Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Six Month Mark....Really?? - Email from 2 April 2012

It´s really hard to believe that six months have already passed! But I guess I have listened to my first General Conference all in Spanish now! Kinda crazy that they will mark every quarter of my mission, since I entered the MTC just right after the October Conference!

Speaking of Spanish and Conference...wow was that INCREDIBLE! I felt the spirit so strong in every session! I was actually able to attend all 5 sessions, and it was really an amazing experience. I learned so much, it was incredible. I went in with a list of 17 questions, and every single one received an answer. I know that God anwers prayers. I´m so grateful for our modern day prophet and apostles. The spanish was actually pretty easy to understand too. :) Another suprise...Elder Scott had already recorded his talk in Spanish! Him and Elder Ochoa from the Priesthood session had both done it. It was incredible to actually hear their voices. I don´t envy all the people in the world that don´t get to know the prophets and apostles on that level. I missed to funny intonations of President Monson, and I´m pretty sure I missed a few jokes here and there because of the translators!

Overall, I feel just so much more excited to be in this work. I felt like the whole conference was focused on the Plan of Salvation. Honestly, in my mission so far I´ve focused a lot on the Restoration and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They just seem so essential. However, God is training me. :) The Plan of Salvation really is everything! I was able to watch a World Wide Leadership training video from 2006 when they focused on families. I don´t know if you have access to that, but if you do, watch Elder Bednar´s talk. He talks about how when someone truly understands the doctrine of the Plan of Salvation, they will be much more better off in their families. They will WANT to do what´s right, to return to our Father in Heaven. Since I heard that talk, everything has stood out to me.

Priesthood session talked about the importance of the priesthood here on earth and in the eternities. At one point, I realized I´ve passed through a huge step in my eternal life. I guess I never realized it before, but at age 12, I received the authority of the Aaronic Priesthood that I will have for the rest of my eternal life! Can you imagine that? For the rest of my eternal life. Now I have the honor of holding the Melquizedek Priesthood. I will also have that for the rest of my eternal life. Maybe that´s part of our purpose here on life as men. We have to learn how to work under the direction of our Father in Heaven, using His power to work miracles in order to bring souls unto Him. We will continue to do so forever.

Another thing I realized in this Conference was my responsibility to really be a true representative of Jesus Christ. Of course, we always have room for improvement, but where are we, really? How many of you have taken the name of Christ upon you through baptism? Do we really know what that means? That means that every single action, thought, or appearance we give should be what He would do in that moment. If you want to know how that affects people, read Elder Bednar´s talk from Priesthood session. As a missionary, am I really OBVIOUSLY a representative of Christ? Can people see that as I walk down the street with my companion? Can they feel it during lessons? As a result of all this self questioning, let´s just say I realized I´ve got some changes to make. :) However, I´m ready to do it, and I know that Heavenly Father will help me.

This week we didn´t have a ton of success as far as investigators go. That´s ok. :) I´m beginning to learn that my true purpose is inviting people to come to Christ, and helping them grow closer and closer. We may not take them all the way. They have their free agency. I don´t know many people that were ready the very first time the missionaries knocked on their door. They are out there, and Doraliza was one of them, but my job is more than just to find those people, it´s to help every single person come unto Christ. Every person I come into contact with should have an increased desire to pray, to find out the truth, and to make covenants with our Heavenly Father.

We do have one hopeful that we´re working with. Pedro is still steadily progressing. He´s loving the Book of Mormon, and is going to reread Alma 32 this week. I think he´s going to realize that yep, he´s received his answer. Then all we need to get him to do is act. :) That can be a challenge, but hey! I´m not the one doing this work, it´s Heavenly Father. I´m just a body that is trying to become a tool in His hands. I only hope that I am effective and that He uses me often and in the right way.

Well, I have to go! I love you all so much. I sent some letters this week, and I hope they find you safe and happy! I look forward to every piece of mail I get...don´t be afraid to let me know what´s going on in life. :) I´d really love to know what´s happening! Who knows? Maybe from thousands of miles away I can try to be the hand of the Lord in your life. Honestly, I try to be a missionary in the letters I write too. It´s not like Pday comes around and I´m no longer a missionary, right?

Anyway, stay safe! Keep your head up! Vote for Mitt Romney if he´s still in it! Haha, he´s mormon! :P

Elder Schofield