Monday, January 16, 2012

Jan 16, 2012

My New Companion from the MTC, Me, The Elder that trained me when I got to Argentina

Letters from:
The Lloyd Family- Thank you so very much for your thoughtfulness. You are so thoughtful. The candy was much appreciated. I love you all and thank you for your example and kindness.

Bishop Brett Thompson- Thank you so much for your letter!!  I appreciated it so very much!  Be looking in the mail for a return. I hope all is well. Love you all!!

Sister Norma Bartholomew- Thank you so much for your thoughtfulness and I enjoyed remembering those times at Jefferson. Thank you for being such a wonderful example to me.

Emails from-

Lindsay Hayes- Thank you very much for your email Lindsay. I look forward to reading it. I am glad you got the letter. I hope that school is going really well. Thank you for your example and I will write soon. Have a great week. You are great. Oh yeah, I keep forgetting to tell you that I met and am friends with an Elder Oldham here who went to Madison and knows you.

Crystal Cox- You are like the best cousin ever! Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy day to write me. I loved hearing about your testimony building experiences and the wonderful time Dani had at the temple. That is so neat. What a wonderful experience.

Happy Birthdays this week to Dani- the newly wed, Grandpa Clegg, and Sharee!!

Grandpa Clegg- I hope that you have a wonderful day and are able to feel how loved you are and the influence for good you have had on so many. I love you and you will continue to be in my every prayer! Happy Birthday!

It was an awesome week this week. It was really fun to travel to Bahia Blanca (5 hours + away)  and see some of the country side of Argentina and meet some new Elders. We got back on Thursday and we had a successful week since then. So my new companions name is Elder Joshua Yarger. He is from Casper, Wyoming. He has roots in Grace, Idaho on his Moms side, their names are Don and Julie Reno. I figured I would try my luck!? He is awesome and we have a lot in common, things like we both can´t speak Spanish and we are both white... haha! no just kidding!  Actually this week has been awesome!!  I have gained a lot more confidence with my Spanish. I will ask a question and then I will get an answer right bacl. I was quite shocked the first time. So things are getting better! I still mess up a ton but I am so grateful of this opportunity. Elder Yargers family are big cattle ranchers and it has been really fun to get to know him. He has some big desires to work and so we will do awesome!
This week Yeal, the son of a less active progressed a lot. He will be baptized the 28th of January. We are working with his Grandma’s boyfriend to get him to quit smoking. He keeps coming to church so he just needs to get the desire. Right now I don’t know if he is doing this because he wants to change or wants to get married. Prayers work though.
So I was humbled this week in more than one way. When we got back from Bahia Blanca it was 1 or 2am. We grabbed our stuff and then headed for another hour bus ride to Miramar and got here at like 3:30 in the morning. We woke up and at 8 when I went to start my personal study I opened my backpack and saw that my scriptures were gone. I panicky checked my other bag and then remembered that they were on the bus in Mar Del when we arrived. But my old companion had loaned our phone to other elders to call a taxi and they had left with our phone…. so their was no way to call the terminal. Two days later my companion’s luggage came here to Miramar. (the poor guy was in the same clothes for four days) and the finally the phone. We then called the terminal and the zone leaders and they cannot find it. Today I called 75 percent of their terminals between here and Bahia Blanca and no one has it. My guess is it is still on the bus or someone now has the Book of Mormon… which is a good thing. But these scriptures were special for a couple reasons. One I had a photo of you all taped inside and I also had a leather case made for the outside. Really pretty. And I have every single scripture marked in Lesson Three from Preach my Gospel, so it was my life line.... I prayed a ton and now I would like to tell you how Heavenly Father answered those prayers.

First off, I was able to remember the famous “Box Story” from Grandma Crouch when she was on her mission in Washington DC... that helped me a lot... Second off, two days ago I was making room for the luggage that we have. Our house is so full now with four Elders here and I found a box. As I looked through the box I found a old scripture bag just like the one that my scriptures were in. As I searched through it I found a sheet of paper with all of the exact same scripture references on it that I had in my scriptures. It was just a little tender mercy of Heavenly Father saying... you might not get your scriptures back, but you can still go to work. I am still hoping some how I find those bad boys some how. I don’t quite have the same luck that I had in BYU - there when if I left my scriptures someone would call me within a day telling me they had them!! I guess I wore out my luck then..!?  And we also found a member with a cousin who is a realitor who probably has a house for us. We just won’t be able to move in until March, but we will take it and we are still looking.  It was a really neat week. I really loved the conference and with the new Elders it was just excellent and I really learned a lot.

I know that as a missionary if you forget yourself, the Lord remembers you.

I am so glad to hear that you all had a great time at Dani´s wedding! The picture looked great and I am very happy for the Putnams. What a great day! Thank you Mom and Dad for your wonderful emails and I am very excited to read them. I actually wrote Payson a letter today....I hope they find out what is wrong and can help him quickly! I will pray very hard for him. I hope that all goes well, tell the Lotts that I love them and they are in my prayers also!!

Dad- It sounds like you had a great but busy week. What you said was perfect --thank you so much. I feel very blessed to have this opportunity to grow. I am glad you had a good time at the wedding! Sounds like Mr. Romney could be the next candidate..... wow, I honestly didn’t believe that. That is great and I hope that he is qualified to stand up for what is right. Dad, I also prayed for you fervently this week like always. I wake up and go running and then just crave my time to pray for each one of you. I thought about the scripture in 2 Nephi 32:9 that talks about praying before you do something. I think that counsel is to help you get a vision of what you want of your day. My Mission President always talks about the word "vision" and I will forever remember him for that. I believe in the power of having a vision of your life and then going for it. God gives us what we want, if our desires our just. I love you Dad, Go make it happen Captain!

Mom-  I feel good! :) Yesterday I had a little head cold and couldn’t stop sneezing, but to day I am totally better. Don’t worry about anything. I hope that you get snow on Wednesday!  Sounds like all the kids are doing well in basketball and progressing well. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your letters and in the words of Dad your “books” to me every week. It is so nice to be able to feel what is going on at home and it is a great blessing and strength to me. I will remember it forever. I am glad you could help to the Putnam family with the wedding reception. I know they really appreciated it. I hope that you can have a really wonderful week this week. I love you beyond words. Thank you so much for all you do!!  I have just decided that gratitude is the way that I honor my family. It is quite motivating. I thought about the scripture in Helaman 5: 6-7 and also Mosiah 18: 8-10. I love you Mom. Have a great week. Keep me posted on Payson.

McCall- Hey! Thank you so much for you email. I will send you a picture of the facturas (pastries) next week... I sure love you McCall!! Your birthday is coming up soon. I hope that you had fun with the cousins at the wedding and have fun at the birthday party this week! I love you.

Harrison- Hey stud. How is life?  Thank you for your email! I just loved it. I hope that you have an awesome week buddy!! I love you so much. You are a very good kid. Keep it up!

Alex- Hey man, I hope life is well for you bro. Thanks for your email! I hope that you do well on your games this week. I love you so much Bro! Go get em. Be the man off and on the court!!

Brennen -100 percent from the three that is pretty impressive! I wish I could have seen that. Good work. I hope that your team can pull out some big wins this week and you can keep up the success. I love you so much buddy. Thank you for your example keeps being the stud you are! Have a good one.

Mikesell- Hey sugar! It sounds like a fun week you had! That is a funny story about that kid. Ha-ha. 4 months early to prom is good…? Very well prepared young man!? Mom is a wise woman to give that advise. I love you so much Mikesell. I just looked at your goals today and I will read them this week. I missed them the first week. I love you so much. You are such an Angel. I miss you. You are always in my prayers. Keep up the faith!

Well you all I love you so much. I am excited to read the emails tonight and hope that you all have a wonderful week. I love each of you so much. I miss you but am happy trying to become more Christlike in the land of Argentina. Christ lives and through him we become happy and find the peace that we need.

Heavenly Father loves all of his children!!!
Oh and Brennen and Alex your homework for the week is to read the talk by Bishop McMullan in the Priesthood conference again. I think it is called ¨The Power or the Aaronic Priesthood¨

God Speed!

Love Elder Austin

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