Thursday, September 24, 2015

A Special Witness

September 14, 2015

This week was fantastic!  Elder Juan A. Uceda member of the first quorum of the Seventy and President of the South America North East Area came to tour the mission and train us as missionaries.

Thursday, I was flown in to Santa Cruz for a special Mission Leadership Council meeting with Elder Uceda and his wife.  It was amazing to me how simple his message was to us.  He talked about the conversion, and how it's impossible to achieve without one gaining a personal testimony of Prayer, Scripture study, and Church attendance.  These things give the spirit an opportunity to touch our hearts and mold us.  Moroni teaches about "Being perfected in Christ" in the last few verses of the Book of Mormon, and that simply isn't possible without these three vital lifestyles.

Saturday, I went with my powerful district to Tarija for a Zone Conference where Elder Uceda presided.  Honestly, for 5 hours I was on the edge of my seat!  It was very, very insightful.  The spirit was tangibly present.  Elder Uceda taught about "digging deeping" into the sciptures.  It was very cool to learn how he studies the scriptures and hear his insights after years of being a general authority.  Even though he was born in Peru, he said that more than 30 years have passed since he has studied the scriptures in Spanish, he studies in English 100% of the time, and literally exhorted all of the Latinos to learn English. Hahaha it was nuts!  The man is powerful!  like out of nowhere he just starts yelling!  haha or better said exhorting, but it was legit.

Something really special happened on Sunday, out of all the units in the mission, he chose to preside over our district conference!  Freak it was nuts though, so much "palo"!  He basically just gave all the members here a spanking.  haha.  For two hours:  Pay a full tithe, arrive to church meetings on time, or early, no purchasing on the Sabbath day, Modesty, and Having a current temple recommend.   It was heavy!  His wife got up and said, "NO COMPRAR EL DÌA DOMINGO, NO COMPRAR EL DÌA DOMINGO, NO COMPRAR EL DÌA DOMINGO"  (Don't buy on Sundays x3)  Literally yelling/exhorting.  haha I loved it.  It's exactly what we needed here in Bermejo!  And what basically every unit in Bolivia needs.  

All in all, it was a life-changing experience.  The spirit worked so strong within me this week, I feel so blessed! 
It is so important to be 100% obedient to even the smallest of things, after all, we are doing it for Him.
D&C 64:33, Amen.  

Elder Bender

                                                         Can you tell it is hot here?
Elder Lozano and I got matching BOCA shirts! Aguante BOCA!
Elder Rose and I both suffering in the heat on P-day. We had a great Churrasco with Presidente Fred!

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