Monday, April 23, 2012

April 23, 2012 - Getting Seasoned

!Son los Mayores¡
Wow, what a busy week you all had!! Thank you all so much for taking the time to write me. I am so grateful to hear from you all and I take great strength from all of you.
This week I received your the package with all the candy and the sweet notes. (Easter) Thank you so much!  I was meaning to send a picture with the box, but I can’t send it from this computer.
Letter from:
 Bishop Prince- It was so great to get the letter from you. I appreciate it so much, even more than that I am so glad to hear that you and your family are doing so well. It sounds like you have had a great winter and that busy spring is in full swing now. I will write you here shortly. Please tell all your family that I love them and that I am very grateful for them. Thank you so much for your prayers and thoughts for me.  Keep being “the man” Bishop. I love you.
Emails from-
Grandma Clegg- I figured you must be up to something really exciting.  ;) I am so glad to hear that you were able to have such a good time in McCall with the Pearsons. What a memorable time. Thank you for all the updates and your encouraging words. I am so grateful for you and love you so much. Have a wonderful week and I hope that the beautiful Boise Spring is going well. Thank you for your example.
Grandpa Crouch- I appreciate these letters so much and I treasure them. I hope that everything is going well at Crossroads and that the spring is going very well. I love you and so grateful for your influence in my life.
Sklyer Ochsenbien- The great warrior has officially returned. I am glad to hear that you are doing well and that you have many plans for the future. Have a great time in California and I miss you brother. Thank so much.
Well, another week….! Dad as you said the sand just keeps slipping through the hourglass, some days faster than others!! This week I was able to be in my area a little bit more and it was great. I was in General Acha, which is where the other Elders from our district are for splits. It was nice to be in a small town again for a while, and there house is huge. haha. No but Elder Sondregger is a wonderful Elder and we had a lot of success together. It was terrific.  The district is doing well and it is different now to be worrying about the potential and success of other Elders now. I know they have so much potential and I so want them to reach it.  Also this week I had some great time studying. I have been reading the New Testament and it has been great. I am starting to get a beat on the Ward and what our weaknesses and strengths are. We have a wonderful Bishop and Ward Mission leader. There are lots of less active members that also have a lot of potential to come back we had about 45 in the church last Sunday. We had more in Miramar when I left and it was a branch - so we have a lot of work to do!! The city here is a different feel and the people are nice. Yet like in all places there are those that aren’t the biggest fans of missionaries. We knocked a door this week and as I reached my hand through the gate to shake his hand and he told me how he does not shake hands with Chonkies (North Americans) and then proceeded to say things that.... well after about five seconds I tapped my companions shoulder and we walked away in the dark. I was truly frustrated. He was saying things about a country that I love, that were so false and I was either going to not be a good representative of Christ or walk away… so thankfully, we did the later.  With Mitt Romney, I have heard of some stories of some Elders getting some heat so it could get fun down here. It was a good journal experience. Other than that it was a really great week and I am hoping to see the fruits here in May.
The miracle of the week is this, Sergio and Maria agreed that if Sergio found work they would set a date to get married. I fasted for them on Sunday and lo and behold as I was in General Acha, my comp called me and told me that Sergio had found work. He is in a wheel chair so it was a big miracle. They will hopefully have a date before next P-day!  I testify of the power of fasting. I have seen miracles through it on my mission and it is something that I have really learned on my mission.
Other funny story is that a couple of weeks ago we did a mid split in our area because we had some time and me and another Elder knocked a door and a man came to the doorand told us that he was talking to our friends. I was not sure if he was sane and I teasingly asked him what were their names. I then heard in the back of the house (in Spanish) I am Elder Knuteson. We laughed and told him to go ahead and keep talking. So we had knocked the same door that the other Elders were inside teaching. Appearently they needed that message. haha. What are the odds!!!
Well, Mikesell my thoughts and prayers were with you and I can see that you had a wonderful time. Prom Queen!! You look so gorgeous in your prom get up…. and you didn’t need to be elected Queen again, because you already are on in the most important way. What a special time for you and I am so glad to see you happy. What a cool picture that is!!
Dad- Thank you so much for taking the time to write me. I know how busy this time is for you and for you to even remember is a great act of love in its self. Thank you. I love your letters. I am happy to hear that you all had a great time with Lindsay and Scott and that you are so excited for another great year. Will  Callie and Leah be working up there again this year? Who all will be returning? It looks like the lake is almost ice free. It is cooling down here, the jackets are out. They tell me it gets really windy here in the winter, never snows but is just cold. So I have been well prepared thanks to Jerome. Well Dad, I sure love you and am so grateful for you. I just wanted to tell you that Christ does live and that through Him we can become. I love my mission and love my relationship with my Heavenly Father. I know that I can do better and look forward to a new week to try a little harder.
Mom- What a week that you have had! I have always loved how you just love to have people over and it is such a good thing. You have lots over this week to visit and stay! It sounds like this next week is busy - so much going on right now. Thank you for the pictures. I am sure grateful for you and I love you so much Mom. Today Elder Henry told me that we write some 102 letters home in our mission and I am pretty sure I say a lot of the same things every week but words just kind of fall short in some things. I feel so blessed to feel like I have grown closer to you all during this time. The prayers that we pray for each other are real. I love you Mom. Thank you for the package. You are truly amazing Mom. May you have a truly blessed week!  
Mikesell- haha I got a good chuckle about your “throwing up” story at the end of the airplane ride…and the way you told it. What a fun surprise to have an airplane ride to McCall for breakfast…and to fly over Redfish too! What a guy!  You looked so BEAUTIFUL in your dress and I am glad that you had a good time. You are truly amazing Mikesell. Oh the places that you are about to go. I miss you and am praying hard for you. Enjoy this time you have left and just live it up, but put first things first. I am glad you had a good time with Lindsay and Leah and all the wonderful Redfish buds. Mikesell... I love you. I sure miss you some days. Keep being strong and I will too. Sometimes I just picture how I want to feel when I see you all again and give you all hugs and that motivates me to change and to make myself who I want to be in that very moment, and that moment will only be sweet in the future and if I give all I have now. I love you and I know this is worth it. Stay strong and never forget your bro who loves you and prays for you daily.
Brennen- Man you are a stud! Hey I was thinking about what you asked last week and I thought of something. You can look at people as who they are capable of becoming. We all have so much potential, but not all realize it. How is tennis going? I am excited for Amy to enter the field and thanks for giving me the update! haha. Little bro I love you. Be strong and I am glad that your talk went well. That is the way that Satan will try to destroy you so build up those walls just like Moroni did. I love you man. Keep being awesome.
Alex- Hey my little man. Thank you for writing me every week …and thanks for the letter that you sent. I hope we don’t end up in a “cat” in that tic tac toe game we are playing in our letters to sent each other… and that we can finish the game before my mission is over! haha. How is ball?  I hope that you have a great time in Boise with your tourney this weekend. I sure love you buddy. Keep being awesome. Don’t back down and always keep your focus.
Harrison-   I love that picture of you that Mom sent in your soccer uniform. That made my week!! Thank you so much for that… How is soccer going? They play soccer so much here. It is way bigger than church. Are you excited for Redfish? Thank you for your picture in the package and thank you for your prayers. I sure love you. Keep being awesome!!
McCall- What a cute picture of you also. That was wonderful. What a cute little soccer girl that you are. I hope that you are tearin it up out there. I am sure that you are. I sure love you little sis. Have a great week at school and keep being you!! I love you and keep it up. Do 15 pushups for me!!
This week I found a lot of great scriptures and I would like to share and talk about them with all of you but I will just write the reference.... Romans 8:24-28 Proverbs 4:7  I have come to love the scriptures so much.
This week I have been thinking about a quote by President Eyring that has given me a lot of vision and desire to do a little better each day, maybe it can help you all too.
¨ I promise you that if you do all that you CAN, God will magnify your STRENGTH and WISDOM. HE will SEASON you.¨
I also thought a lot about Alma 17 and what it means to be born again. I think it has everything to do with your desires, to want to know who Christ is.
Well… This all is real. I love you and know that I will see you soon. Keep busting it!!!!!!
All my love-
Elder Austin
GO and DO my beloved family!

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