Monday, March 13, 2017

Let the Holy Spirit Guide

                                                                                               March 13, 2017
Hi Everyone!
This week was great and we have a lot of unforgettable experiences! So many that right now I don´t remember a lot of them, but I will just describe a few haha.
 First, a few pictures to share: 

Elder Wirthlin and me with our Bishop as we take cover from the rain

We got pretty creative at our District activity. Can you guess which one is me?
On Monday we hiked Monte Cristo with 2 other Elders from the district. It was a really tough hike, but so worth it for the view! And Cristo is written on the mountain kind of like Y mountain (hopefully you can see it in the pictures).

But the view was incredible and I don´t remember it being very sunny, but we must have been pretty close to the sun at the top because I got really burned (see picture of my tri-colored neck) Wear sunscreen kids.

This week we had a lot of great experiences! Familia Gonzales have come to a halt as far as their progress for baptism because we are trying to work with the Dad, but he keeps failing to meet our appointments. Hopefully this week we will be able to teach them.
Familia Humacata are really not keeping their commitments so we will most likely have to leave them this week which is tough.
One family we taught Monday night is Familia Martinez. They had watched the testaments movie so we decided to read 3 Nephi 11 with them. We were able to teach the doctrine of baptism and the importance of the authority Christ gave to Nephi. The wife is strong Catholic and had a lot of doubts and questions about original sin and baptizing children. I was a little worried about being able to answer them, but then I remembered Moroni chapter 8. We read three verses with them, everyone understood very clearly, and I felt so grateful for the Book of Mormon in that moment! It was a great teaching moment for them and for me about the power of the Book of Mormon to clearly and powerfully teach the gospel of Jesus Christ!
I also have a stronger testimony now than ever that we are being guided by the Spirit. As we contacted in the park this week, we were about to leave, but decided to stay a little longer. Two less active members found us a few minutes later and asked where the church was. Later as we were contacting a man, a girl from the other Stake came up and told us she had a reference for us. Now we are teaching her cousin! It was an amazing miracle!
Yesterday one of our investigators told us his grandpa had died and asked us to go and comfort his family. We didn´t know anyone there, but decided to go to the viewing a few houses down. We felt super awkward and uncomfortable and had no idea what to do, so we said a prayer asking for help. As we finished, a man walked up and asked us if we needed anything. He called out some of the family members and they let us enter. They gave us each a plate of food and when we finished we shared a scripture and our testimonies with the immediate family. I know Heavenly father loves us and answers prayers! He will guide us in each moment if we are humble enough to ask for His help.
I know that no one is more interested in my success as a missionary than my Father in Heaven and He is watching over me in each moment, especially in the most difficult ones.
Thank you all for your prayers and encouragement! Things are looking up here and this truly is the work of the Lord that will roll forth until it fills every corner of this earth! Have a great week!
Elder Harris

Monday, March 6, 2017

Nowhere I'd Rather Be!

                                                                                               March 6, 2017
Hi Everyone!!! 

So Carnaval was great! We got permission to watch a couple of Disney movies, took some solid naps, ate a lot of Ramen noodles, and cleaned our house. But as fun as that was, it was really good to get back to work on Wednesday!
Here is a picture of the parade outside our window on Sunday.
(We live on the 5th floor and have a sweet view.)

Companionship study (totally not staged at all). But we did actually study there on Saturday I promise.

This week has been difficult, but I have also had some really amazing experiences and have felt the Spirit so frequently!

The Ward is working hard and doing a lot to help us out and this week our area got a lot bigger because they have added a neighborhood to the grupo familiar, so we have inherited some investigators and potential investigators. But we still only have about 3 or 4 people we are teaching so please pray that we can find more people this week!

We realized we haven't really been talking to people this week and that's probably why we aren't finding (complex, huh?) So as sad as it is that it took us that long to realize that, we are going to open our mouths more this week! We set a goal of talking to ten people each day and I am sure that will help us find more of those people who are prepared to receive the gospel.

Some of my favorite moments from this week:

Thursday, I interviewed a young man for baptism who has some things he still needs to repent of before his baptism. It was such a special opportunity for me to testify of repentance and the atonement. I love testifying of repentance because it has truly changed my life! It is so amazing to look back and be able to say that I am no longer the same person I was a few years ago! And we can all say that each and every day as we choose to repent and follow the Savior daily!

One of the families we are teaching is Familia Gonzalez. Cristian and Maribel are 14 and 11 years old and their grandma is a member. Their parents are not interested, but this week we read from the Book of Mormon with them. One of their cousins was their reading with us from the first chapter of Nephi. His mom came to the gate and called him to go and he didn't want to leave. Sitting there with these three kids and reading from the Book of Mormon, the thought came to my mind " There is nothing I would rather be doing" The Spirit quickly confirmed it and I am so grateful to be here! I am grateful to be able to bring light into the lives of my brothers and sisters. These kids are remarkable and hopefully they can continue to prepare for baptism!

Lastly, yesterday was a great opportunity to fast! The law of the fast is the lords way of caring for the poor and needy! I have really come to love this commandment on my mission as I have the chance to pay a fast offering to help those people all around me who stand in need of so much. This is a divine law and there is no better way to sanctify ourselves and bless our neighbors than living this commandment!

I love you all and hope you have a great week! This church is true and Christ is at the helm! He loves us and will not let us fail in this great work of salvation!


Elder Harris

Carnaval Party Time

                                                                                                  February 25, 2017

Hola Family,

Tomorrow is the first day of Carnaval and so our P-day is today as we are preparing to stay inside over the next few days. Carnaval is a huge celebration before Lent that consists of parades, partying, and alcohol and is not appropriate for missionaries. It is basically a huge water fight/alcohol fest that lasts three days! So tomorrow we will go to church with a member, return to our homes after, and then stay in the apartment until Wednesday morning. It is going to be pretty crazy.

But, I am excited to work on my Spanish, watch church movies, clip my fingernails, and all sorts of other fun stuff during these three days!

This week has been pretty exciting...we started teaching a part member family and the kids are progressing really well! They have a baptismal date for the 18th of March. The other Elders in our area left this week so we have a huge house all to ourselves. Hmm what else...we saw a dog get hit by a car which was very scarring. And today we have interviews with President which I am excited for!

Here are a few pictures I want to share: 
Exciting news--we found a ColdStone this week!
Elder Wirthlin took a picture of me with an old deserted car
                                  Elder Wirthlin and me enjoying lunch at a steakhouse
                                  (Best food I have eaten in my mission)

                                Final picture with the crew before we left for Tarija
    This place is too beautiful!!!!

The work is going well here in Tarija...we are teaching more and more lessons each week and the
Lord has really blessed us to be able to find people to teach!
I hope everyone has a great Carnaval even though you don't celebrate it! If you want to participate, throw a water balloon at someone who doesn't want to get wet this weekend.
Love you all and Happy Carnaval!

Elder Harris