Well first of all, I want to apologize, i forgot that this week was going to be transfers, meaning that we have p-day on Thursday instead of Monday. I will warn you in advance right now, that I’m not going to be emailing this next week because we are going to the temple, and cannot email because it takes us the whole entire day. Also I could not send an email, because we can't do that, we can only email on p-day, so in the future, i won't be able to do that, because we can only do it Thursday after changes.
Well this has been quite the interesting week for me for sure. I have been really trying to think and pray to figure out the things that I need to do differently. I feel like i have been working as hard as I can, and yet haven't felt like I’ve been doing anything. I was praying that I could be able to receive the answer that I needed during conference, and be able to do the things necessary to have better success. Our mission president usually does it that we can only go to the Sunday Morning, and Priesthood session without an investigator. He however changed it so that we could go to every session. Here in Paraguay, most of the members only go to the Sunday Morning session.... which I feel needs to change. Anyway we listened to the whole thing in Spanish, but i didn't really have to hard of a time understanding it. The first two sessions were really good, and i felt like I learned so much, and the priesthood session, as always, was amazing, and I saw a couple friends in the missionary choir that they had singing there. After Saturday though, i still didn't really feel like a had a clear answer yet as to what i need to be doing differently. Sunday morning came around, and during that session my answer came quite clearly..... It was during the talk of President Henry B. Eyring. He talked about the importance of trusting the Lord. I feel like I have had faith in the lord and that he can help me, but the thing i have been lacking all this time... is trust.... trusting that he WILL help me if I am completely obedient, and have the trust in him. I determined that day that from now on during my mission, no matter what happens, I will trust the lord, and trust that whatever is happening or whatever I go through, is for the best. I felt like my answer came so clear, and although i learned many other things from conference that was definitely the biggest lesson I learned.
Anyway we finished conference, and then something happened on Monday morning. My companion called the zone leaders to see if they had gotten the information for the changes, and they had. And apparently the Lord decided he wanted to test me on my commitment of trust, because the zone leaders told us there was something weird with our companionship. Later that day I found out i would be leaving my area Wednesday morning, going to an area in Asuncion. I woke up at 2 that morning after packing until 12 the night before.... yes I only had two hours of sleep. We arrived in Asuncion at 5, and waited in the terminal until 8 for all the rest of the people to arrive. My new companion, is another native, from Panama. He has been on the mission..... 1 transfer more than me. My area now is in an area called Villa Elisa, and my ward is El Alto. I am now actually in a ward, rather than a branch. Our ward has about 60 to 70 people that attend, and it is an actual chapel.... a nice one. Our apartment has 4 elders, 2 who are in our zone, but not in our district. The apartments in Asuncion all have new mattresses, rather than the old ones that we had everywhere else. Also we have two baptisms for this Saturday, and 2 others that have a date. We have a lunch appointment every day, and some dinner appointments. My companion is a lot harder of a worker than my trainer was. With my trainer we would always waste a lot of time just working inefficiently, but here I feel like it is a lot better.
My Spanish is getting a lot better, I sometimes think in Spanish, and other times think in English now, so for the most part I can talk pretty well. I have just been reading the Book of Mormon aloud every day for language study, and it has been helping me to be able to hear how to better pronounce the words, and learn more words.
The food here is pretty much the same as my other area. Every time the people feed us, it is usually one of three things. It's something that is called guiso. The three parts of it is they either serve rice with some little bits of meat, or pasta with the same, or beans with the same. It's quite the variety of food, i know. The other things that we get sometimes is tortillas (the kind here), Sopa de Paraguaya (which sometimes is really good, other times not so much), and Sopa so´o (with meat inside). With every meal they serve either mandioca, or bread, and sometimes both. They usually just give us water with the meal, but every once in a while they give us these drinks that they make here. They take either a fruit or a vegetable, and put in some water and sugar, blend it up, and serve it. I have had it with carrots, grass, pineapple, and orange. The first two may sound gross to you, and you would be right. The other two were pretty good though.
Anyway, i feel like with my new companion things will go a lot better than they did in my last area. I know now that i have to have trust in the Lord, and do all that I can to carry out this work. I love you guys, and I will talk to you again in another week and a half....
Que le vaya bien,
Elder Ryan Griffin