This trip was VERY interesting...
First of all, we got to travel with President and Sister Rowley! 5 full hours with them in the car! I definitely got to know them a lot better, and I can tell that President is a lot like you, Dad! Haha, it was pretty funny because we were driving basically on the beach so we could see the water, and out of the blue President just pulls the car over and says, `Look for a whale! There should be some whales in that water!!!` It reminded me of something that Dad would do. :)
However, I learned a lot in that trip...it was cool as well because we listened to a Mission President`s Seminar talk by President Monson. It made me see the other side of the mission...that of being mission president. Is it possible that maybe someday I could be mission president? I hope not! At the same time...it would be an incredible opportunity to serve the Lord. However, I learned in this trip that the mission presidents have a lot of the same fears that we do in the beginning, not knowing how to do things, and that the prophets are always there to give the best sort of advice!
Once we got to Tumbes we had a special treat! We got to eat in a Restaurant! The first time in two years! Very interesting...but then we went with the ZL`s to sleep.
That work visit started off with a BANG! Well...almost. ;)
Without giving a LOT of details...when we left our room at 10 in the morning, broad daylight, we witnessed a robbing!!! What a great experience...but something that I would have preferred to not see. We just had to hurry along because there really wasn`t anything we could do! But who would have known that an even stranger experience was waiting for us??
So as we get super close to the taxis that would take us to a district meeting we have, a white guy stops and asks us, in English, `hey, can I talk to you guys for a minute?` Mostly, I was just freaked out to see an american there speaking perfect English, so I said sure...big mistake!!
So he goes off...explaining about all these weird theories he has, one of which had to do with the right to bear arms. He said that if only a few people had the right to bear arms, wouldn`t we feel threatened by those that did have weapons? Of course! So we ALL have to have the right to have them! Then he tried to apply that to Nuclear Bombs...apparrently the States shouldn`t mess with the middle east because they should be able to have Nuclear Bombs like all the rest of us! It`s the same principle! (I think he`s crazy, what about you?)
But that wasn`t the craziest...somehow we started to talk about religion and Christ, and we mentioned the fact that we do believe that He was resurrected. He denies that, saying that 1 in a billion can be perfect like Christ and can have His powers. Then he said the craziest thing I`ve ever heard in my life, and he was very serious, he said `I am the new Christ. I have come to save mankind, but if they don`t help me and don`t believe in me, then I will curse you. There is hunger, there is disease, everywhere I go people feel my wrath, because they don`t believe in me and don`t help me.`
I never thought that I would see that prophecy fulfilled...but there really are false Christs out there!
The best part of that experience is that I KNOW, without a shadow of a doubt, that it was a lie. The spirit was NOT with him when he said that. I know without any doubt in my heart that Christ really LIVES. He died on the cross and rose up on the third day. He is now directing this church through prophets and apostles. Every time I bare my testimony of this, I can feel the spirit witnessing it to my investigators. This man had no spirit to back him up, because it was a blatant lie.
So...that made for a VERY interesting morning!
The next day we went with the LZ`s in Puyango, which is also Tumbes. However, that wasn`t as exciting because I ended spending the whole day with Elder Henriquez, who was very sick! He has parasites, so he was in and out of the bathroom all day!
It gave me a LOT of time to think...which was good and bad. I thought about all the many experiences that I`ve had on the mission and the amazing change that I`ve felt going on within me. I am not the same that I was before. It has been quite a journey, and these last couple of weeks will continue to be that way.
Anyway...I don`t have a lot of time, but I did want to mention one thing more! This last weekend was a special stake conference! They did it from Utah, and Elder Bednar and Elder Scott talked to all of Peru!!! It was AWESOME because they were SO direct and really know what peru needs.
Two items: Repentance and Respecting women. RIGHT TO THE HEART.
It was pretty amazing, and the spirit was super strong.
Anyway...I have to go because President is waiting for us!
Love you all so much! I hope that you`re all getting ready for conference!!! It`s going to be amazing to listen to the prophets and apostles of our day again!!!