This week has been quite the culmination of a significant amount of different experiences for me. Let's start at the beginning.
First, on Friday, I received my travel plans! Leaving for Argentina this Monday, flying with everyone in my district to Buenos Aires, taking a bus to Neuquén, all awesome and great. Super excited. The rest of the weekend we learned a lot of Spanish, and had some awesome talks with our teachers and such, it was all amazing.
On Sunday, Elder Johnson and I got called to be the new zone leaders! (for a week) which was exciting, but the whole day I felt like I needed to be a better example of a stellar missionary and such to my zone. In testimony meeting I shared a section from a talk by Tad R. Callister that Lauren gave me, entitled "Being a Consecrated Missionary." It was a great quote and many people said that it helped them with different things they've being dealing with themselves, which was super great. I also got to see some good friends on temple walks, and had a pretty good fast Sunday.
We've been learning a lot of Subjunctive tense in Spanish this week, which is fun. We also got to Skype with a Spanish member, and teach her on Monday, which is cool.
At our Tuesday Night Devotional this week, we had the privilege of hearing from President Russel M. Nelson! He is an inspiring man with a ton of insights for us. The power he has is amazing, and we could feel it as soon as he walked in, and continued to sing the prelude hymns with him. It was a fantastic experience. He talked about God's goals for missionary work, and how we continue to complete them, even though the means of doing them may have changed (i.e. iPads, Skype, etc). My favorite part was when he said "You are not here to be a salesman. You embarked on this journey to bring yourself closer to Christ." I love that quote. We come on missions to help bring others to the light of the gospel yes, but the main reason we are here is to ourselves become more like Christ. As we do so, we will turn outward more often, and we will help all of God's children, because those are things that Christ does. This has inspired me in my missionary efforts, and made me desire to everyday look for the opportunities ser mas como Cristo.
Yesterday, our district had the opportunity to host the new missionaries that come in on Wednesday afternoons, and it was really awesome. It was fun to help these missionaries feel more comfortable, and to get them situated so that they would be ready to go. It was really nice to ensure them that it'll all be okay, because I've been in their shoes before. It was a neat experience. As zone leaders, Elder Johnson and I and the Sister Training leaders also got to welcome our new district last night, which was great. We had a good time, and I actually met one of the Elders at BYU! He's Elder Clark, and he lived on my friends' Harrison and Derek's floor. It'll be awesome to be able to work with him over the next couple of days.
At this point, most of you are probably wondering what the heck my subject title means. Well yesterday afternoon, Elder Davis and I found out that our visas have not been processed yet, and we will be serving temporary assignments! So I have been reassigned to the Pocatello Idaho mission until my visas comes! Now I know what some of you are thinking. Is this not the exact same mission that you would jokingly wish many a friend that they went to, and use almost as a scapegoat of the mission lottery? Why yes. That would be correct. The exact mission I would almost poke fun at, is the mission where I will be serving for a temporary assignment. In case you have not figured out in your life yet, the Lord has an extremely good sense of humor. But in actuality, I am excited for this opportunity. At the moment, I am conflicted because I want to go to Argentina; that is the place I have been called, and that is the place I've been dreaming of since I got my call, but the Lord has called me to go to Idaho. There's something I need to do, or someone I need to save in that mission, and I am going to try my hardest everyday to figure that out and serve the Lord. From what I understand, there is usually not ever a problem with visas for Argentina, and this complication is because of some of the paperwork, or the FBI clearance, but I know that this is not the real reason. The Lord saw my progress while in the MTC, and realized that He needed me somewhere else. I don't know what, I don't know how, and I don't know when, but I know that I need to do something in Idaho. I will update you all as soon as I find out what that is.
As I reflect over the past five weeks on my last P-day in the MTC, it is impossible to deny that the Lord has in all things that I have done. The amount of Spanish I've been able to learn, my wonderful companion who's my best friend, my district full of life-long amigos, and amazing experiences with my teachers, investigators, and branch presidency, I know that I made the Lord's decision when I decided to serve a mission, and when I decided to go. The Lord has a plan for each and every one of us. Sometimes He won't tell you what it is till five days before, but I promise you He has a plan. I encourage all of you to talk to Him tonight. Pray and ask what His will is for you. For a while, I used to ask the Lord to make me the best district/zone leader I could be, but it wasn't until I asked Him to help me do HIS will, and be HIS zone leader, that I saw a difference in what I was doing. He's there. He's your Father. He loves you, and wants to hear from you. Please, ask Him what He wants you to do, I know that if you do you will much happier in your own life, and be able to become more like Him and His Son, Jesus the Christ.
I love you all, and hope the best for each of you!
1. Elder Johnson and I with the classic map picture
2. Elder Smith-Driggs!
3. Another temple picture
4. It was chilly and overcast enough to wear a sweater this week, and Elder Christensen and I decided to oblige in that.