Friday, October 9, 2015

When ye are found in the service of your fellow beings…

September 14, 2015

First off, I hope that when everyone reads these experiences, I hope that they can know that they are true and that also they are lessons that can be applied to one’s life; not just to the one who is experiencing them.  I love all the letters that you all write me and I try to answer them all!  Hopefully it is enough!  
This week has been such a blast and I can’t wait to tell you guys in person one day of all the experiences I have received here in the mission.  In this episode of Elder Burke: Argentina Resistencia Mission, we find many things different since we last heard from Elder Burke.  One is the change in climate which indeed affects the work or attitude of Elder Burke; two- he is really sore from the amounts of physical labor he has been doing, and three- he is narrating in the third person for your entertainment.
De Elder Burke y Vasquez
The weather yes, has indeed been the most fun thing in the world here.  It for some reason went from super humid to super dry... so when the sun goes down the heat that was placed into the ground leaves faster so it has been fluctuating between 40 degrees Celsius to 29 degrees Celsius (104- 84 F), it’s been so cold and so hot all in one day!  And it keeps happening. I am wearing my gloves, beanie, two layered coat to bed with socks (I don’t like sleeping with socks on so that was a minus) and was still cold!  Then When I get to the middle of the day I am dying of heat so I walk around in my short button up shirt, and then it drops back down.  Talk about uncomfortable.  But as usual I like to save these moments to remind friends and family later on in life, possible future children as well, that "back in ARG. I survived it all!" So don’t tell me that you hate life because your computer froze for an hour and had to resort to living without technology! ja ja.  Na it won’t be like that, but I do have a higher appreciation for the small things I had before:   a car, a nice bed, an air conditioned house, carpet, a lawn mower, running water that was filtered and safe to drink, etc, etc.

Well so as the introduction was found, yes we have done a butt load of service this past week, three of our days were filled with cutting grass with machetes, pulling weeds, clearing out the mountains of trash found in the yards of people.  Shoveling, raking, and enjoying being pasty white for the sun to burn you!  But in the end, the best satisfaction is that you indeed helped someone feel important and loved. Also through one of our service projects, we brought a new investigator to feel the spirit strong!  So, while I did divisions with another elder two weeks ago, Elder Stock found a family to teach while I was gone.  This last week we went to find them and teach them.  We found the family there and their daughter who is a single mom of 30.  She came from her house a couple of blocks away and got to know us and hear what we share with all the family.  Her name is Laura.  She said she is investigating the Jehovah Witnesses church and is looking around because she hasn’t been baptized yet and she said she’s looking into that.  I think Heavenly Father was setting this one up just perfect.  When we ended the lesson on the Plan of Salvation, we asked her if we could do some service for her at her house.  She told us that she has a back yard that needs tending, so she accepted and said that we could pass by the next day.  We were very punctual when we got to her house and that it impressed her so much to let us start right away.  We cleaned the back yard of her house and got to cut some of her grass.  The thing sometimes is people throw their trash into other peoples yards and well basically she had a lot of glass bottles thrown into her back yard, which makes it pretty dangerous for her 5 year old son and 2 year old daughter.  When we were cleaning it she asked how much she had to pay us.  You should have seen her face when we told her she will never end up paying us… EVER.  We could only be there for 45 minutes but we got a lot done.  We ended with a prayer and I noticed that she had some tears in her eyes.  She didn’t say anything, but asked if we would still be passing by her parents’ house to teach, we said yes.  She said that if she wasn’t there that night, she would see us at the church.

We were pretty sad at church, Elder Stock and I, because we tried so hard to get people to come but no one came.  As we were in the second hour of church we got to see Laura!  She came and brought her kids and the entire branch was so loving and helped her feel right at home!  She got there for the last two hours and had a lot of questions answered and could feel the spirit very strong.  It was the best miracle for us to see the fruits of service!!!  She’s awesome and the members are already taking down her information and are gonna visit her with us this week.

We have been working endlessly, following the counsel of President Franco who said "Never be satisfied with where you are, there is always something more you can do."  It hit pretty hard for us but it’s a new mindset that I like, I won’t stop moving- to better my teaching or my understanding on how to bring people to the truth.  It’s something that can be applied to anything, if you say I am not satisfied, work to make it better; there is always something more you can do!  And the rewards are the best feelings of accomplishment and a never ceasing drive to do good unto others.

Love you all!
Elder Burke

P.S. Next episode on Elder Burke: Argentina Resistencia Mission

Elder Burke and Elder Stock have constructed a triple deckered pizza pie, can they eat all of it? Tune in next time!

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