Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Halfway Point


Well, I've finally hit the halfway point at the CCM. Things are still going pretty well. As for the food, it's pretty much the same stuff. They do try to cater to the Nortes a few times a week, we've had pizza (it's not really pizza, but it's good) and a few chicken sandwiches. It's all tasty. I've only dipped into the medicine for some of the fiber pills, just in case. I've actually felt pretty good this entire time, which makes me worried for when things go down. We actually ended up switching investigators again, we will probably start tomorrow. Things did get better, but Elder Georgeson and I need to teach faster. We barely finished the first lesson.

As for the talks on Sunday, yes, I have to prepare a 5 minute talk every Sunday for Sacrament meeting. In Spanish. Luckily it's only 5 minutes. I haven't been called on to talk yet, but I prepare every week for it. I'm actually going to have 2 fast Sundays here (one has already come and gone), so that's only 4 talks to prepare. We will see what happens next.
And I have some very exciting news, especially for Dad: I'm learning to roll my r's. I can do it after o and a, and sometimes after e. It makes me so excited every time I do it. 
I'm glad to hear that everything is going well with school and seminary, not that I doubted that it would. 
Everything's gone crazy here today. Everyone but the 17 Nortes that came with me left, and we are supposed to be getting about 100 more Latinos today. No Nortes for some reason. We had to move rooms, and we spent the first half of the day at the immigration office applying for residency. It took a really long time, which is why I didn't email at the right time. We also learned that they are combining all of us 17 Nortes into one district, because they need all the space for the Latinos that they can get. We have mixed feelings about that, but hopefully it'll turn out well. After immigration, we were supposed to go to Burger King for lunch,  but I guess someone didn't tell our van driver that. (By the way, one of those pictures is all 17 of us crammed in 1 van, probably not safe, but it's what we had to do.) So we got to the CCM at about 12:30, starving. Someone went and got us all 6 inch subway sandwiches, which were good, but not quite filling enough. We hadn't eaten since 6:30 that morning. It's been kind of a long day. Other than that, things have been pretty normal. Sorry that I'm not taking a lot of pictures, but I only see the same things every day, so there's nothing really new to take pictures of. The other two here are just of some of the scenery around Bogota. I'll send 2 more of my room in a minute. It's tiny, and it looks like all bunks that are crammed in there will be full, which should be an adventure.
My main spiritual experience has been the strength of priesthood power. On Wednesday morning, I was having a rough time being happy, and I was really working on it. But it seemed that nothing I did helped. During one of our classes, I realized that it was Satan, trying to make me ineffective. Our first Sunday here, we had a devotional about how to remove Satan, so I did exactly what president DuVall told us. I said in my mind "Satan, by the power of the Melchezidek Priesthood, I command you to depart." And then I quoted in my head the First Vision. And the change was almost instantaneous. It was amazing. I'm very grateful for the Priesthood, and the Holy Ghost.

I totally forgot, this Saturday we had a 3 hour proselyting activity. They put us on buses, drove us to a park in Bogota, sent us off, and sent us to get referrals. The 90ish of us got 500 references. They had all of the new Nortes go on Splits with Latinos and the older Nortes, so we could actually be effective. I was with Elder Argyle, and we got 12 references. I didn't do much, but I learned that it's something that I can definitely spend some time improving on. My Spanish continues to improve.
We also had a great district meeting about the strength of families, and how the Gospel blesses families. And Breje especially will be impressed, we were all in tears thinking about it. I want you to know, I love you Mom, and I love you Dad. And of course I love Jalen and Tyson and Kate and Sydney too. I've been told that the last 3 weeks in the CCM feel like one. I guess I'll get to see if that's true.
I love you all, and I want you to know that I'm thinking of you. Thank you for all of your prayers for me.
P.S. Just so you know, my district and my old roomates (who aren't here anymore) wanted me to say hi.

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