Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Week 70 - Enduring to the End (2/26/2018)

So this week has been pretty interesting. I got sick and I got sick big time. I've been sick for like a week and luckily I have been getting better. Didn't stop me from doing the Lord's work though. We saw little miracles this week and a lot of craziness as well. It was quite interesting to see it all unfold to say the least. 

This past week we had the opportunity to go on two exchanges and for both of them I stayed here in Rupert. The first one was a really great learning experience for both me and the Elder that I was with. We were able to see little miracles come about by using the technology that we have now received. We went and walked a few of the streets of Rupert to catch anyone outside since our appointment wasn't home and we did find a few. All English speaking though which was a little dis-heartening. But it was all good. We had some really good conversations with them and maybe, just maybe, they will investigate the church and be really good members. We had to hand those off to the Sisters and hopefully, good will come out of it for them. We're pretty lucky that the English Sisters that we have in our Stake, are really good, hard working sisters. Live in a spoiled world here in Rupert. 

The Second exchange that I went on was with a greenie and I felt so out of it that day. I was taking so many medications to treat all the symptoms that I had and nothing was working. I was amazed by how nothing was working at all. We still worked pretty hard though. We had a few doors closed in our face and some few choice words told at us, but we continued the good fight. That day we just rolled out Facebook to one of the Districts and they were sooo excited for it. So I also helped this new missionary clean out his and we almost cleaned it all out. It was pretty cool. 

Things have been pretty good for us here in Rupert. We did receive a lot of snow and it's a good thing I do know how to drive in it, thanks to last year. I love being with my companion and it has been really fun being here in this Zone and I'm getting close to a year in it. It's crazy that half of my mission (once it is two full years) I have been down here in the Rupert area. I love you all and I miss you all!! I hope everything is well with everybody!! Enjoy your week!!

Elder Ruesch Sosa

Week 69 - Charity Suffereth Long (2/20/2018)

A chair in the middle of nowhere
Snowed pretty heavily
while in an appointment
Snowed pretty heavily
while in an appointment
Twin Falls Temple from the back

Well this has been a long week. And we did suffer a lot of things, but everything we did was out of love. It being the week of love (even though it's really only one day of the week) we did a lot of service. Our days went by in the service of those that we care about. We helped out a companionship move into their new house in their area!! It was pretty cool for them. We also helped paint it. We then helped one of our members move out of his old place into a new apartment complex that is tons better!! He called us later in the week thanking us and that he loves his new place so much more. It was great to hear the excitement in his voice. We then (all of this happened over the week) helped out our ward mission leader tear out the carpet in house and prune some trees. It was pretty fun!! I don't know what I would do if I couldn't serve. But as well we did teach this week and the biggest highlight I would have to say would be helping one of the Recent Converts write a talk for sacrament meeting. It was such a joy helping them as they wrote about our choices and how, what we do now in this life, affects our eternity. It was soo cool. 
The Twin Falls bridge
A lot has happened this week, but I can't seem to remember a whole lot of it. It's a constant battle in trying to see people, keep in touch and teaching. It's a battle, but one we have not quit on yet. This week has flashed right by and I just don't remember a whole lot. Well, I love you all and I hope you have a great week this week!! Remember, I always love you all no matter what!!!

Elder Ruesch Sosa

Monday, February 26, 2018

Week 68 - Sickness Strikes Back (2/13/2018)

I'm a huge nerd and I died when I saw this
Well, I don't have a lot to say about this week, cause as the title states, sickness struck back. This time though it wasn't me. My companion was sick for the entire week... None of the less, this week was really long for me. But I gained a lot of spiritual insight on the Book of Mormon. It was really good! I definitely know, how much that book alone testifies of Jesus Christ. Every page and every letter points right to him!! 

I also got to work on my drawing skills cause my eyes can only take so much reading. So I drew a lot as well. I'll attach photos at the end of the email. 

When Elder Cooke felt good for an hour, we tried to do some Skype Lessons and Facebook Lessons, but we had no good success there, but we do have tons of appointments set for this week. Yesterday by far was amazing! We went and worked. It snowed which was very weird, but not weird for Idaho, we got to work. We just knocked and testified all day! We had a very good lesson with one of our investigators and we just testified the entire time of the good things that they feel when they go to church, read the Book of Mormon and Bible, and pray to our Heavenly Father. We testified of how all those good feelings that they feel are from Christ. It was just amazing on how much they lit up. It's amazing what the spirit can do!! We got tons of appointments set for this week and it makes us so excited!

Things have been so great this week even though it's been pretty hard to stay active with the sickness. Advice, take vitamin c everybody!! I love you all and I hope you have a great week!! 

Elder Ruesch Sosa

My drawings

Monday, February 12, 2018

Week 67 - The Wind is Howling (2/5/2018)

Me and my new found cape
So this week has been a little of a crazy one towards the end of things. To start off, I'm still in Rupert and still 100% right on my feelings of transfers!! I am still 12 for 12!! Wow it is crazy how fast time flies!! As of today I have been out 16 months and it's so hard to believe that I have been out this long. Time just flies! Sorry mom if you don't feel the same way. I'm loving my mission and everything that happens, even in the rough slow days. The one positive out of the week still keeps me going. 

Well we had an amazing turn out in finding this week, even though we didn't find this new investigator at all. He found us! I've never had that happen before!! Someone actually coming to us and telling us they want to be taught! We were able to teach them the first two lessons back to back cause they wanted us over two days in a row. Wow! They are so prepared!! We went in and asked a lot of inspired questions and testing their knowledge and wow, the small simple testimony that they have, was very powerful. The spirit was so strong in the room as we taught the things we know to be true. And even earlier that day, we witnessed the same miracle. We have also been trying to see this family for awhile and we just could never get a hold of them, until last week. We remembered that they told us they are usually home in the mornings at around 10-12. So we stopped by at around 11ish and had an amazing lesson with them.We talked about the Book of Mormon and what they read and they loved what they had read!! It just touched their hearts!! We were able to testify that those things they read about were true and their countenance just was lively! We asked them if they believed that Joseph Smith was truly a Prophet of God and the wife just said yes. She went on to explain and wow, Elder Cooke and I were amazed by her testimony. I love seeing the small things like that and how they keep me going. It's the reason why I serve. To see other people enjoy the happiness that I have found through the Gospel. Elder Cooke and I talked about that lesson and we were just both surprised. 

Icing the foot
We still have our struggles, don't get me wrong. We can't get anyone to church cause there is no Spanish support. We are hoping that will change soon. We would love that and I know that those that we teach would love that! Cause for now, it's me and Elder Cooke translating and we aren't the best at it. 

So As I started, transfers were this week and we ran into a problem. We were using our new Area Book Planner app to plan our day and we did, but as I synced I got notified that one of us was being transferred. I was like no, were not. I proceeded with the sync and I lost our entire area book. Just gone. I told Elder Cooke not to sync just as a back up and luckily it was a good thing that he didn't. After a whole bunch of talking with the Assistants and trying to get this worked out we were able to eventually figure it out. So if I make one recommend to any missionaries that are getting this email and that will be transitioning to Smartphones, it would be this. Make sure that all the areas are named correctly. That was the problem we ran into. Our area was named Rupert when we are Rupert West Spanish. So they changed the names on ours, but really just flipped the areas and I lost everything. Elder Cooke eventually just reassigned all of our investigators to the assistants, and they reassigned them back to us. In the end it worked out. But I was going in full panic mode if we couldn't get them back. Just know that you can now. 

Well I love you all and I hope you had a great week last week and that you have a great week this week!!!

Elder Ruesch Sosa

Week 66 - Work, Work, Work (1/29/2018)

Well this week has been very quick to say the least of it. We got to go on exchanges and I went back to Malta! It was pretty nice as going back there. We were able to see some of the families that I had grown close to and talk with them again. It was amazing. One in particular was a lesson we had that night with one of those families I had gotten close to. We were teaching them the importance of faith and how it leads to action. We were able to testify to them that we don't need to know everything because our knowledge increases as we go on in life. Before we walked into the lesson we were talking in the car with a member who accompanied us, about extending a baptismal date. As the member and the other Elder discussed, I thought about it and I was like February 24th sounds like a good date. The other Elder never said anything about date. As the lesson went on and it progressed, the Elder pulled out his planner and looked at a  date he had written down. I didn't see it, but when he extended the date, it was the exact date I thought about in the car!! It was awesome!! The Spirit definitely had the two of us on the same page during the entire day. It was amazing!!

For the rest of the week, things flew by. We had crazy things happen like a mysterious referral showing up and ending up being fake, but still led to a teaching opportunity. That was kinda crazy. We had to hand it off though cause it was English speaking. We also went through one of wards entire list looking for Spanish names and every single one that we contacted, could speak English.... It was nice making contact with all of these people, but sad that it isn't our work... As for the rest of our week, we got prepared for Zone Conference!! Now it's official, the entire mission has Smartphones!! It has made things a lot more easier now. It's pretty cool. We got ready for Zone Conference and the training that we had to give, which was pretty simple. It just truly is amazing to finally get these rolling to use. For sure in the future it'll be something amazing. Other than that things have just been a blur here. I did get sick yesterday, but luckily I am feeling much better than I was.

I really don't know what more to say other than I love you all and I hope you have a safe week!! I love you all and miss you all!! Be safe and take care!!

Elder Ruesch Sosa

P.S. Transfers are this week and we don't know what's happening. I've got a feeling that I'm staying though. And so far I have been 100% right on those feelings.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Week 65 - Don't Kill Me Mom (1/22/2018)

Shoving my braced foot into my shoe
to look professional still....

So this week has flown by pretty quick and I'll get to the title later, probably soon. We've had some awesome lessons this week which has kept me super happy until I sprained my ankle. Mom just so you know, I'm okay. We were playing Basketball and as everyone knows, that is not my sport. I went in for a drive and I went up and when I came down, I landed on someone else's foot and there went my right ankle. But on the flip side I made the shot!! Know I'm in a brace again for who knows how long. Yesterday was the first time we walked a whole lot and wow did that hurt. Enough with my pain on sadness, I'll move on to some happy things that happened this week.
Mission Leadership Council

Well, like I said we had some pretty great lessons this week and one of them is with a family that we've been trying to work with for quite some time. We were able to meet with them and talk about commandments with them. As we were going along they even brought their kids into the lesson!! It was so awesome to see that they were already willing to share the Gospel with their kids whom we've not met. It was just wonderful to see the joy in their eyes as we shared the Gospel with the entire family and even give a Priesthood blessing for their sick child. As we got out my companion said he started to feel sick. It was pretty funny as he came to the realization that he wasn't sick. 

Mission Leadership Council
Another great moment was what happened on Preparation Day before I sprained my ankle. We were with some other Elders and they needed haircuts and my companion wanted one too. So I just waited out in the foyer listening in to their conversations they were having with their hair stylist. When all of a sudden a lady walked in to set an appointment for the following day. I listened and I could tell English wasn't her first language, but she spoke it pretty well. She left and saw me and we greeted one another. She probably came in maybe 2 minutes later and asked if I spoke Spanish and I had said yea I do. We talked and she referred herself to us. I grabbed her info and she left. I paused for a quick second cause I was worried she may not be in our area. I pulled up our area map and looked at the address she gave me and sure enough, she is in our area!! We contacted her and her family and it was a great experience. It was sure a miracle for me that they were in our area. 
Mission Leadership Council

I have seen so many miracles even with a bad foot. It's amazing to know that miracles still go on today. Cause I don't know about you, but I definitely need them,especially to get this ankle healed. I love you all so very much and thank you for being you. I really appreciate it. I love and miss you all and I hope you have a great week!!

Elder Ruesch Sosa

Friday, January 19, 2018

Week 64 - With Patience Unyielding (1/16/2018)

So this has been a super long week and I'm just overly exhausted so this may be short (still contemplating it in my head). It's still pretty cold here so that may be playing a factor. Things are pretty good here I'm just exhausted. Something that has been really prevalent in this long week has been patience. Here's why.

So we work with pure Spanish work here in Rupert and I'll just say it's tough. We really don't get past the first lesson for a lot of people and even then we can't get them to come to church. We've had really incredible lessons with people, it's just what follows. So it's pretty rough, but I wouldn't change a thing about it. Sure, I'm mentally and physically exhausted (some days more than others), but I'm learning how to love them continually more and more. Even if they do frustrate me. I know for sure the Lord is playing a hand in all of this. Whether I be planting a seed or seeing them progress, I will not know. 
Funny pic I saw in the Bathroom
I guess one of the things that has been pretty nice was last week a lesson that we had with an investigating family. We read with them 2 Nephi 31 and talked about being Obedient to our Heavenly Father. They flat out told us "So we're not being obedient by being baptized? Huh, I guess we need to work on that," It was just amazing to see how determined they are to progress. There are definite small miracles in the work, it's the matter of seeing them. 

Another thing that was really inspiring was the funeral of the former Prophet Thomas S. Monson. I couldn't help but cry a little during the funeral. He really was a big example for me in a lot of things. For serving a mission and just serving others. If there is one thing I will remember from him will be Service and Charity. Two things he personified magnificently. Later in the District Meeting we had that same day, we all bore testimony of something that we've liked about Thomas S. Monson and how he has influenced us. It really brought the spirit into the room. I truly love feeling that spirit. 

A translation I started for some new rules.
Found out, they already have been translated by the church...
Well there really isn't anything else I can think to put on my email that would necessarily be of good content. I just want to let you all know that I do love you and I do miss you all sincerely. Don't worry about me, I'm in the Lord's hands. Stay strong and remain who you are!!

Elder Ruesch Sosa