Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Lechuga y Aceitunas

hello family. the caps lock doesnt work on this computer... how sad my life...

we had a pretty chill week. we heard lots of the word no... i think its funny that in spanish and english its the same word.. hahah. lots of the phrase, maybe another time... estoy ocupadita, im a little busy....  we had so many appointments fall through... but its okay because in the end, the family jaime, family of 5 were all able to come to church, except the mom. i literally can´t get enough of the look on the face of the people, the first time in church. the family looked so happy and content even though they are going through a death in the family... Watching them try to sing the hymns even though they have no idea... asking questions during the class. and when its all over, telling us they will see us next week... Nothing better. seriously. They all stayed for the 3 hours. 3 of the sisters are all in the young womens. they doubled the attendance of the young womens. then the other 2 in primary... they all have a fecha for the 20th of september, we will see what happens. i am praying so hard for that family. they need this, the world is so bad... 

we were able to leave and do some visits with some members of the ward this past week. A member who is living here for work purposes but who is from peru, is always such a help. an inactive family we have been working with for months were able to come to church for the first time in years, 2 grown men, the hardest ones to get to listen, were touched when our member, lennin, was able to bear his testimony, help with some doubts they had, and give the opening and the closing prayer because Hermano. Proestakis loved him so much hahaha. They both came up to us after the sacrament meeting and said, we´ll see you next week... i love those words. 

i was hit hard with strep throut this past week... its so cold in the mornings... this apartment has holes in it so the cold air just flows in hahah. its a fun little adventure we have. at times i was down a bit with my excitement but i was inspired out of no where to read 2 different talks, one that elder sargent gave to me and the other is called My Grace Is Sufficient (I Just Found Out There is another Caps Lock Key on the Keyboard haha silly me). The 2 different talks hit me hard and I realized I need to smile more, have the eternal perspective more, make good-fun memories. The Lord doesn´t just make up the difference, He is the difference... all of it. All he asks of us is that if we fall to get back up, even if we fall again, to get back up... Its hard for me to explain.. just go read it if you haven´t yet. It helped my vision and gave me the excitement that I needed exactly in that moment.. its funny how the lord does that. 

The Fleas are still in love with me for some reason... they chose to be in love with my leg this week (Here´s a picture) don´t worry, be happy. Don´t send me anything Im alright, I have enough Asea don´t worry Dad:) I think its funny haha. 

I'm officially the Director of the Hymns in church.... I hate it. We don't have a piano player (I regret 100% not continuing with my piano lessons... you were right mom i know.... :( anyways here in Chile when you don´t have a piano to play an intro, the director has to sing the first line so everyone knows how it goes.... lets just say i'm not the best singer and my voice goes through weird stages at times hahah 

we were able to do a service this past week. I learned how to make cement... I know ZERO about construction but it was fun learning hahah i definitely don´t have a carrer in construction... I was also able to do an intercambio with one of the companions of the District Leader... His name is Elder Mazariegos from Guatamala... reminds me sooo much of Tyler hahah same personality and looks and everything except in Spanish. Such a funny kid. A little home sick but that happens... We took a picture at a park with grass in the background.. you don´t find many parks here in my Ghetto sector... I got some stories for yal about what goes down here... better left for after the mission... pray for me;) hahahah I love it though. A Young man  in my ward here who we worked with a total of about 20 times in the past few months, one of my role models here, and one of the few people that I can call my true friends is going on a mission today. Abner, is going to Perú and was set apart yesterday, I gave him my Mission Manuel and a tie with some shoes that Don´t fit. he will be the greatest missionary, so humble... goodbye Abner.

I have been reminiscing this past week of the type of person I want to be in the future... Thinking about some of the fond memories of my past but also the not so fond. Just know I love who I am in my vision, and daily I strive to be him. I was thinking about some of the memories with each and everyone of you in my family, and would like to flashback... sometimes its necessary to do this at times. 

Chase- Nintendo 64, and NHL Hits until someone loses and throws the control at the TV hahah, Those Long days playing Basketball in the church until one of us loses it and gets kicked out of church ball games;) hahah sorry... Late night Ping Pong matches until someone throws the paddle... we always seemed to end in throwing something hahah. don´t worry that will change. 

Ciera and Seth- Those Sunday dinners when I was waiting for college and waiting for my mission. The small chit chat that really meant more than you know. I loved those dinners for so many reasons. Tweeting about you both and knowing Seth would read it hahah. Feeling at home in your house with you receiving me so well. 

Tanner- Listening to all of the Spongebob songs in my car, the few times I was able to spend some alone time with you. 

Zack- Playing catch in the backyard, (I wish I would have been better at that with you). Seeing how fast you progressed at baseball in such a short time.

Juan- Those famous big hugs you would give me. The dedication you showed to lose some weight, running on the treadmill.

Cashaye- Me singing loud and proud downstairs thinking no one was home then seeing you open your door to your room laughing and smirking... oops hahah

Mikayla, Melyssa, and CC- Stuffed animals on the trampoline, early morning game show network for kids on channel 101, the games we would make up in the pool and around the house, the plays we would perform on the stage upstairs.

Teancum- Soccer and Baseball everyday in the freezing cold snow, seeing your passion for sports. making late night McDonalds runs with Dad telling you not to tell Pamela hahah. 

Lydia- Being a cute little darling

Pamela- Karaoke and movie nights as a family. Treating us like your own children. mommy pam.

Dave- The cool dudes thumb handshake thingy with Chase, always telling us the 5 things to be sweet, kind, gentle, generous, and loving. the discipline you taught me even though I didn´t realize it til now. 

Dad- Football in the Entrada house with Chase, Button hook around the tree over the lava rocks hahah, going to ´´work´´ with you but getting into the baseball and basketball games for free to see them warm up and catching home run balls. cheating to the front of the line to get Mariano Riveras autograph and getting kicked to the back but still getting the autograph hahaha. our famous loooooong lectures with chase that I, now, love so much. 

Mom- Jamming out to Party in the U.S.A in the car together, with our own dance and everything hahah. The few times where I just wanted to do errands with you, seeing you on the side watching the Golf Tournaments of me even though I sucked... haha and also being able to see you at my baseball games on those beautiful spring days.

I love the mission. 

Elder Paxman

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Llego Mis Zapatos!!!! Andres Se Va A La Mision!!! Yo Estoy Refriado!!! Extrano Elder Sargent Y Mangum!!!

Como Están Familia y Amigos. Solid week. I just received the best email from a 19 year old convert in Arica. He was the only person I baptized in my 4 and a half months in Arica but this letter just made it all worth it.. He wrote me
``Querido Élder Paxman amigo le vuelvo a escribir después de tiempo, quería decirle que recibí mi llamamiento como secretario, confirmé a una niña :D el 8 de diciembre del 2014 estaría yendo a la misión, por pronto estaría yendo al templo para recibir la investidura con el barrio, estoy yendo a seminario estudiando el libro de mormón, y yendo a instituto he te cuento que: una joven futura misionera haha la he conocido en poco tiempo y la he llegado a querer :D y ojala salga todo bien, espero que tengas muchas visitas día a día trabaja duro en la obra del señor estamos en contacto, cuídate mucho te quiero amigo``.

I`ll do my best to Translate. 
Dear Elder Paxman. Friend. After a little time I write you again. I wanted to tell you that I received my Calling as Secretary, I confirmed a little girl a member of the church, and December 8th 2014 I will be going on a mission. Therefore I will be going to the Temple to receive my Endowment with the ward. I'm assisting seminary and studying the Book Of Mormon, and also going to Institute and  I also tell you, I met A girl, a future missionary  and in this little time I have come to like her a lot. I hope everything goes well. I hope you have tons of visits Day after day and work hard in the work of the Lord. We will be in contact. Take care, I love you friend.

That's what the mission is all about!! The temple being the end goal. My boy Andrès is going on a mission!!! so amazing (Here`s some pictures of him Last year at his Baptism) I hope you remember him. 

We were able to work with President Dalton this past week... what a blessing that was. The Assistants gave us a call Thursday and told us that President wants to get out of the office and visit with missionaries. He wants to be a member in a lesson, nothing more. I have only heard of 2 other times in the Year that our President has in the mission go out with missionaries... so that was a great little treat we got. We were able to get 2 lessons in with him before he had to go, He is such an amazing man. He testifies so well to the people and they listen! Such an awesome experience to have him in the lessons with us. I won`t forget this. It won`t happen again. 

Yesterday was like every other Sunday, full of blessings. I don`t know if you remember last week where I talked about Dayana. We were able to meet with her family yesterday. There were 4 Siblings and the mom in the house yesterday. The older sister, Barbara is 18 years old, Dayana 16, Juliana 12, Hugo 10 and the mom Alejandra. They were all sooo receptive to the message of the restoration. And all 5 of them accepted a Date to be Baptized on the 20th of September. We left a Libro De Mormon with each of them and they committed to read the Introduction. I have a good feeling about them. The Familia Jaime... Remember my friend Jaime... I miss him haha Silly Mexican friend. I like Mexicans. 

We saw like 4 Dog fights this week.. I hate dogs...

Our Recent Convert Victor is doing great. We are bringing him to a Family Night at a members house today... He is going to be receiving the Priesthood this upcoming weekend. Here are some pictures of his baptism from last week. 

We don`t have very many progressing investigators. We have about 11 different families that are investigating but only 2 of the families are progressing.. We have lots of finding to do this week! I am praying for at least 3 new good families this week!!! Pray for those 3 families that are waiting for us to contact them. I`ll get back to you next week about what happened with the goal I have! 

My 3rd pair of shoes just broke haha. Either I do a lot more walking then most missionaries, or Chile produces terrible shoes haha. But its okay because my Son (In the Mission) brought me my shoes that I forgot back in Tierra Amarilla, and those shoes are from the good ol U.S of A. and they are comfortable.. oh the blessings we have. 

Other than that... Pretty low key week... Got that vision to jump out of the Boat and Get those people in that water and into that Temple... A little refriado these past few days (I have no clue what that means in English) But I`ll be alright, nothing that a little hard work won`t recover. So weird to think that Zack and Juan are now in High School... That's just not right. Like my mom always told me, We aren`t supposed to grow up so fast... I'm still a little kid in my eyes.

Here are some pics from the past few weeks. I was lazy these past few weeks... The mission is killing my energy levels... but its a good thing haha.
Shoutout to Elder Mangum and Sargent... #RandomShoutouts  

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Gringo Solo

Not much time. Perks of Being a ZL during Cambio Time. Not.. We were at the Giant Bus station all day yesterday 10 O clock in the morning til 8 in the afternoon. Cambios in the zone are crazy, we have 7 of the 16 Elders Changing... That doesn't happen... President took all 4 Elders out of the ward that we were having a little trouble with obedience and so my old companion from Argentina, Elder Cardozo, and also my son in the mission, Elder Malan, are going to be companions in that ward to ``Open the Sector`` (missionary terms). Elder Stratford (Ex Zone Leader is going to open the sector as well and train a new missionary... We are soo excited for the new changes that have occurred in the zone and President told me we have the tools do make things happen like they should.

Saturday was the highlight of the week, Victor got Baptised!!!!!!!. Although lots of things popped up last minute to try and hold the baptism from happening. There weren´t lights here in Antofagasta, only 10 people showed up (Chile Problems), the baptismal font door locked and we had no keys,... The usual baptismal problems but... We did it... I`ll tell ya more in a few years. Victor was as happy as a 70 year old man could be. During his confirmation in front of 97 ward members (new record for me in this ward) He started crying... such an amazing man. I have never felt the spirit so strong as I had this week. During a lesson with an investigator while my companion was sharing the first vision, something occurred that has never happened in my whole mission in a lesson... The Spirit hit me and I started crying.. I have been praying for help... something to strengthen my testimony... Something to give me a boost in this time of my mission... And it came during that lesson. I felt something I have never felt while listening to the First Vision... I really can`t explain.. but I'm struggling a bit with my comp.. He lacks humility... our communication is great, we talk about everything when we have differences. He just can´t see my side of the things.. He always has to win.. I'm gonna be better from this though. I'm pretty good at hiding things and getting through the hard times. It's been a lot of my mission.

Elder Sargent is leaving me.. He´s going to be a Zone Leader in a city called Alto Hospicio. I'm going to see him every month in the leadership counsel here in Antofagasta. Gonna miss my best friend. We had fun together haha. In the pension here is going to be a Chilean, Peruvian, and Bolivian and me.. It's gonna help my Spanish!  First time in my mission being the only Gringo. I'm excited for the new Changes coming. We´re gonna be seeing baptisms here in the zone...

We had activities everyday this past week in the church. On Tuesday we had ´´Minute to win it night´´ remember that video of me trying to shake the Ping Pong Balls out of a Kleenex box?.... Let's just say I´ve still got it ;) It was fun the members had a ton of fun. During all the games they were playing music in English... They obviously don´t understand what it says because its dropping the F bomb every other word in the chapel.... hahah soooo bad.... Elder Sargent and I felt a bit uncomfortable.. just a little haha.... Wednesday we had dessert night.. I made brownies... The edges got burnt there was about 20 different desserts and the judges told me I won... hahah I beat all the Chilean old grandmas with their secret Chilean desserts and my burnt batch of brownies won best dessert hahahaha... But they didn´t give me the prize because I'm a missionary and can´t go to restaurants.. hahaha So they gave it to 2nd place hahah. Soooo funny. Elder Sargent and I were dying hahah. Silly Chile

I bought a new bag.. 

The Zone Leaders in the center of Antofagasta came to our church to teach an investigator that they have been teaching over there that lives in our sector. Her name is Dayana, Her boyfriend of 2 years is preparing to go on a mission. She has been going to church for 2 years and has been taking the lessons from the missionaries for 2 months. She is straight prepared. She wants to get baptized.The sad thing is that in our ward here there are only about 3 active young women, so not too much support but its okay. She wants her mom and siblings to listen to us as well. We have another appointment this Friday with the whole family and we are bringing our Bishop and his daughter who is the Young Women's President.. We are taking such good care of this family because they are sooo elect. We don´t want anything bad to happen. Pray for Dayana and her family. They should be baptized in no time! Our sector is looking up, Jorge and Esther just took an hour out to get married!!!!!!! So we are going to prepare her for baptism, she needs to start coming to church again. A miracle for them that they are getting married. It made me sooo happy. 

Daily grind with the vision to baptize.
Love you with all my heart Ciera and Seth. Mom you´re the best.

Elder Paxman

Friday, August 8, 2014

Pucha Po

Well... I did it. 1 Tie July completed 31 days with the same tie. Go Elder Me! The Fleas have slowed their pace down a little. I still wake up with new surprises for me daily... But I´ll be alright. I'm a big boy.

We went to the mall here in Antofagasta... It gives me slight flashbacks of what an American mall really looks like, being back in the USA. It was fun being with my boy Elder Sargent doing a little window shopping. I almost spent 35 Luca (70 Dollars) on a soccer jacket... I'm glad I had Elder Sargent there to talk me out of it hahah. Antofagasta is fun. Go Chile. We get our transfer calls this Saturday I have a feeling after 7 months here in Antofa Elder Sargent is going to be leaving me. 

This week has been a good week. Not much to report. Our awesome investigator Victor Araya (67 Years old) is amazing. He came to church for the 5th week in a row all by himself again. We announced his baptism in Sacrament Meeting for this Saturday. He passed his interview and everything. He wants so bad to stay in this church. He´s very excited for his baptism this Saturday. Pray for him this week. The last week before the Baptism is always the toughest. I love this man so hilarious. Can´t really explain too well.

We found a few new investigators this week that are helping us fill in those times where we are walking in the street. The idea is to have a pool of investigators where our time is flooded with teaching.. If only if only. 
This Thursday we had Leadership Counsel. My favorite meeting we have here in the mission. We have the awesome opportunity to hear from President and Hermana Dalton and also the assistants. It's great to see some of the other Zone Leaders from all over the mission, some of my good friends that I don´t see much. I feel like in a month at the next meeting I will be seeing Elder Mangum again haha Such a stud, miss that guy. #Shoutout We received great counsel from our president. The mission is going to explode in baptisms soon. I love the vision we have. It's just a matter of time that we reach our goal of 240 baptisms monthly as a mission and to have 11,000 people assisting the sacrament meeting Weekly... Goals.... They are necessary.

At times I forgot I'm a missionary.. It's just a part of me now.. I can´t imagine sitting in peoples houses, dealing with their problems and excuses everyday. I'm so used to it. Chileans talk sooo much I sometimes go out of a 1 hour lesson and have said 35 seconds of words... They have no shame in cutting you off and just talk and talk and talk haha. I'm used to it, just funny at times... I like the lessons where they just listen... doesn't happen ever.

I have been studying and growing my knowledge in how really to teach the lessons better. Chapter 3 in Preach My Gospel is my best friend right now. Something that my companion has taught me is to really just teach the lesson so the people understand 100%... That's something I could have done better before in my mission. But... Everyday we improve and have to humble ourselves to realize that there might be a better way to teach... That's something I'm in the process of. I'm really focusing on being the BEST teacher of the Lords true gospel as of lately. When I look it like that it's got a lot more behind it, other than just teaching a few lessons to people... This is the Lord's teachings, and I like learning these new and better ways to teach it.

Sometimes during the day my excitement is tough to maintain. A lot of the time I talk about some challenges my companions have and stuff I don´t like but Something I´ve realized lately is that I'm not the perfect companion to have a lot of the time. I'm happy at times and others I don´t feel like talking to anyone.. It's tough mentally out here. 24 hours with the same person. Sometimes I need to realize what my comp is going through as well with me as a companion... I don´t know if I explained that well. I'm just trying to become better day in and day out... It's difficult. I pray for you all daily. Please don´t forget to do your Family Home Evenings.. They are really important.

Elder Paxman