Date

May 6, 2019

Sent By

Miranda Ashton

Feeling Like Myself Again - Elder Ashton

So, this week was a good one for us. We had zone conference and interviews with President Orquera. They were exactly what I needed.

I marched into zone conference Thursday feeling discouraged, frustrated, and just kind of unsuccessful. And yeah, I just kind of had my socks knocked off by the conference. We talked all about what it really means to be a successful missionary. That it's not all about baptisms and new investigators. It really just has to do with our obedience and diligence. Followed up that bomb conference with interviews with President, which always help me a ton. President Orquera is just such a baller and it feels good to be able to talk honestly with him. He tells me the Lord recognizes my work here in Frias. That I shouldn't compare myself with other missionaries and instead just put my head down and go to work.

So, yeah, we were work horses this week. Visited SO many people, taught a ton of lessons, and even had a couple investigators in church. Visited a couple inactives to which led us to a fun and somewhat frustrating experience:

The Guidara Family is an inactive family here in our branch. Brother Guidara was branch president for NINE years. RIP. After getting tired of his calling he went inactive (as a branch president, hahaha love Argentina). Now they've been inactive for 9 years and they want their 9 year old kid to get baptized. The wife told us, in her own words, "Listen Elders. My husband was the branch president for NINE years. We worked so hard for so long. So for the last 9 years we have been on VACATION from the church". HAHAHAha what? Vacation from the church?? I didn't know it worked like that.

I tried not to die laughing when she said that (it wasn't a joke) and we did our best to explain to her that the church doesn't work like that, But she didn't really understand. Fairly pathetic that that is the thought process in the church here, but an enlightening and funny experience that reminded me, as Elder Holland says "it's not over till it's over", that after putting in some solid work we can't just throw in the towel and be like "Well I worked hard so I'm done now".

Pictures: the zone, the "Aguilares gang" all the guys who served in my first area, me with a catholic saint shrine, and me on some giant letters that say FRIAS.

Other than that it was a solid week. I really good conference talk that has helped me cope with our lack of success here in Frias is "But If Not" by Elder Lance B. Wickman. It's about faith and how even when things don't go my way, we still gotta trust in God and everything. Super good. Thanks for your prayers my way. See you all next week!!
----Cooper




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