October 10, 2016


Los Vergeles, Ecuador


Elder Arenas

Week 4!

Hi Family and Friends,

Thank you all for your prayers for me and the missionary work in my area. Thank you so much for all the support that you offer. This week I have felt it.

Tuesday was great because no one canceled any of their appointments. We were able to commit one of our investigators to baptism. Maria Jose told us that this is not a step she is going to take lightly. We assured her we would help her prepare for baptism. She said if she comes to know these things are true then she will do it. We taught her about the Book of Mormon and how through reading it we can receive a confirmation that this is the true Church, and that all the things we talk about are true.

Wednesday was my best day yet. I dunked during our exercise time, I did 50 pushups in a row, my headaches left and that was only the start of the day. In my personal study time I was thinking about how the Lord thinks so highly of me even when I am so weak and incompetent. The image of my mom ran through my mind. She was looking at me and said in tears, "Its okay Cameron, you are good enough for me." Through this I realized it is ok not to be perfect it is ok to make mistakes. It is necessary for our learning and growth. I always have the atonement, thanks to my Savior to cleanse and lift me. Later we found a man who has no legs from diabetes who is very interested in coming to know Christ and accepted our invitation to talk with him about the gospel of Jesus Christ. We taught Adrian and it went really well also. We found a second person in the street. Both people were found because I stepped outside my comfort zone and followed the spirit telling me to talk. This man loves the Bible and wants to find the church that teaches the same things that Christ taught and not have the doctrine changed. He accepted our invitation as well to visit him. We also visited an 18 year old named Bryan. He is so humble and ready to hear. He has had a hard background with his parents being separated and living on his own. He is helping support his family right now, but loves to hear what we have to say. I think he will be a great person to teach. I am feeling more love and joy in missionary work than ever before.

Thursday was a normal day. We helped someone put a wall on the side of their house. It is amazing to see how these people living in such poor conditions are so nice and generous to us always.

Friday was exchanges. I was able to be on exchanges with the DL. We weren't able to do much because he needed to visit the doctor. It turns out he has kidney stones. Not good! In the morning we were able to offer service though. We scraped paint off the wall of a house using acid. Our only protection was no lo toca or don't touch it. Despite this, It was great that we had the opportunity to serve in this way. I am also feeling that my Spanish is improving little by little each day.

Saturday. We taught Adrian the Law of Chastity and the Word of Wisdom. His mom was there so we invited her to sit in on the lesson. This was her first time listening to a lesson of the missionaries. She had a lot of questions that we answered and in the end I told her to pray to know if these things are true because God has the answers. Later we taught an investigator in a place that was the poorest place I have ever seen. Every time I tried to talk to her she seemed more and more confused. I was a little frustrated at this but I remembered a quote of a scripture that if we testify of Christ we will not have failed. That is what I did. I don't know if she understood any part of the lesson but I know that she understood my testimony of Christ and she could feel the spirit.

Sunday. We partook of the Sacrament today and it was a good experience. I asked the Lord what I can work on right now and my answer was humility. I realized that I am no better than any of the people in Ecuador. We are all equal in the eyes of our God. I had known this but not understood it completely. Because of this realization I was able to teach so much better by the spirit with my companion in all of our lessons. Especially with Bryan. I was able to know exactly what to say and if I should ask a question and when I should testify. I was not perfect but I am working on it. It was by far our best lesson we have taught.

Thank you all again for your thoughts and you prayers for me. I will continue to work to bring souls to Christ through repentance and baptism.

Elder Smith


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