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Friday, December 13, 2013

Alright, family. Here we go. I have to try to be brief haha.                                             December 12, 2013

It has been a good week! It's my first and last week as Zone Leader since I'm leaving next week. Our flight plans got changed from the 16th to the 18th. Kind of a bummer, but at least we haven't been reassigned like some other elders. Hoping for the best! I'll be able to call while I'm at the airport. So if I can get you all on the same call, that would be great! If there is anyone that can't be there, send me their number or something.

There is a district in our zone that is having some issues. They've had problems since day one and still haven't been able to get their act together. There's just a lot of contention and pride. It's a district of just 4 elders. They've had meetings with President Pickering and still are just not working well. I'm friends with all of them, but it's hard to know how to help them. They know how they should be behaving and they know how they should be acting. It's all up to them - no one else can make them change. That's something that I've come to realize here. The type of missionary I am is entirely up to me. I can choose whether I want to be lazy or whether I want to take advantage of the time I have to serve the Lord. I want to be able to look back on my mission without any regrets. Gosh dang, I'm so excited to serve. It's weird haha. I know I'll get to Argentina and sound like a total dummy, but that's okay. I'm not scared...just excited for this experience. 

Also, I've been thinking about how people get kind of upset that people come back from their missions and behave differently. It's totally understandable now haha. When you're surrounded by the Spirit for that long and constantly in the Lord's service, it'd be weird to go back to how you used to be. I'm not saying that I want to lose my personality or anything like that. That would be the worst! But I can see how people change. I think about all of my family and friends and I just want them all to be as happy as possible! I'm grateful to have such supportive people in my life.

Dad, Mom, and Grandma - Thank you so much for the wonderful letters. I love reading about what y'all are up to. Grandma, thank you for the sweet card and the money! You are the sweetest grandmother in all of the land. I love you so much! I always look for Jesse and other family members when I walk by their house! Dad, thanks for writing me! I'll be writing a response later today and I'll send it in the mail tomorrow. Mom, that article you sent me was waaaaay cool! Thank you so much for that! Gosh I hate feeling like I'm forgetting to write something...who knows. 

I'm definitely learning to have more patience and to love people unconditionally. I've found the most effective way to help and serve others is to first establish a great friendship with them and then try to be an example. We should seek first to fix our own faults and THEN seek to help others. I'm trying to make everyone here feel welcome and loved. It's hard having to sometimes get involved in some of the zone's problems, but I know it's a valuable experience to have.

My purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ. There are people that are counting on me to bring them the Gospel and help them to progress in this life and in the next. That's hard for me to comprehend. A lot of the speakers in our devotionals have mentioned things pertaining to our purpose. I'm so excited to share this message about eternal families, faith, hope, repentance, love, and God's plan for all of us.

Alright, so some last things. I will attach some pictures, and one will have my new flight info. If I'm forgetting anything, please email me, because I can check pretty frequently now. Also, I've heard some whisperings about riots in that true? Let me know haha. Also, I got a nice treat-package from Grandma Jean and Grandpa Dennis today, complete with a wonderful card and some money. I need to write them!

I love all of you so dang much! I love this Gospel and I love the feelings I get when I teach it and learn it. I am in the right place, doing the right thing, preparing to teach the right people. We are so blessed to have this Gospel in our lives and we need to share it with others! Aaaaaand guess what else is crazy...I'll be in Argentina for my next P-Day...holy smokes! Okay, I have to go.

Hope y'all are doin' well and I hope you have a fantastic holiday season!

Paz y Amor,

Elder Sipple

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