Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Limitless Love

October 26, 2015

This week was a very special one, I'll remember it forever! :)

It's safe to say that it's summertime!  I think it has gotten above 100 degrees every day this week.  I have a gnarly half-neck tan line from my white shirts.  It's hideous.  haha.
Last night it was like 88 degrees with probably more than 80% humidity at 10:30pm in our room while we were trying to go to bed!  Free sauna you know?

We are having great success teaching Rene`s  (our recent convert)  family.  His brother Ever has started reading the Book of Mormon and really has made some big changes.  This week we are hoping to meet and teach Ever's wife that way as a family they can have the vision of an eternal family.

Thursday we went to Tarija for the Zone Conference.  It was a great one.  Sister Willard shared about how often times in life, our plan A, doesn't work out.  However that doesn't mean that we are failures, or that God didn't hear our prayers, it's just His plan is often different than ours.  She explains that after our "Plan A" falls through we often transition to our Plan B.  And just as surely, it'll crash and burn just as Plan A!  
The answer is found in Plan G, Plan God. My "life plan" will have to be that when things are not working out, ask Him what the plan is!  Alma said it best, we need to counsel with God is all our doings.  
The moral of the story isn't that we have to fail 6 times to get to God's Plan, but rather try to live according to His Plan, His Plan of Happiness to find consistent, and often times instant, success.

As a district we had prepared a special musical number to sing at the multi zone conference and I chose "We'll Bring the World His Truth" as our song.  We sang the first verse in Spanish, the second in Portuguese, and the third in English! We changed the words "We will be the Lord's missionaries" to "We are now the Lord's missionaries". It was very special for me to sing that song, because I feel like singing it 7 years ago in EFY really stoked my flame into a scorching desire to serve. 

In the same Zone Conference I gave my "Final Testimony" along with the other 2 Elders and a sister that are all finishing this transfer whom are currently serving in Tarija/Bermejo.
I feel like He has changed me so much since the day I entered the MTC!  How blessed I feel.  

I love the Lord!

Yesterday, Sunday, we had a Multi-Stake/District Conference broadcast for the Areas of Perù and Bolivia.  The first 30 minutes were presided by our district President, President Arce who has come to be a great friend of mine, and then vìa video conference Elder Anderson presided the conclusion of the meeting. In the first 30 minutes, President Arce asked me to share my testimony as part of the district conference.  Honestly, family, I feel so blessed to have worked in The Bermejo District!  As I bore my testimony, I looked out over many converts and less actives whom I have worked with, many leaders with whom I've been able to support and sustain, and I just love them all!  Bermejo is such a blessed town.  I feel like through working in 2 of the 4 branches, and then exchanges as DL, I have come to personally know about 80% of the members here!  The church is so true, they have so much faith.  It brought tears to my eyes thinking of how merciful God has been with me to lend me some of His love for His children.  

In conclusion, that's what its all about!  Godly Love.  Fatherly Love for all of his Children.  That's the work of salvation.  It is part of who I am, I love it, I love Him!

-Elder Bender 

P.S. FYI, I am at 901 contacts with my goal for contacting 1,000 before my mission ends!  99 to go!  Pray that they'll be accepting!

 Chopping down the papaya tree from our service project last week!

     Baptism selfie
 Rene's baptism pics from last week!
 Picture from the Zone conference with my first and last sons!  They are great Elders and great friends.
 Preaching to them vacas.  "Every ear shall hear, and every tongue confess..."
Ping pong for our morning workout! Here is Elder Hecker returning one with some heat.
We helped the Branch President with tearing down an old building with some less than adequate tool for our weekly service.
 Chopping down the papaya tree from our service project last week with Elder Hecker!

Pretty Papaya flow in Elder Hecker's hair
 The Cow that we taught wasn't really responsive.. but we tried to focus more on the plan of salvation because his family was gone.

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