Monday, March 30, 2015

Week Seventy One in Ecuador - March 30, 2015 - Another Wonderful Week in Paradise :)

Well guys, it's been another wonderful week in paradise :) haha

I'm doing very well and I'm glad all is well at home too. I'm glad Jacob had the chance to go to prom, I hope he danced his butt off.

Well this week has been super cool. First off we had a baptism!!! His name is A. and he is so cool. His wife has been a member for a long time and he recently decided to get baptized. It was so cool to be able to help him make that decsion and to hear from his mouth that his next goal is that they can get married in the temple in a year!!!! It's awesome and it's proof that God really does want families to be together forever, because he makes it possible for all to have a chance to recieve a conversion. Even though it all doesn't happen at once sometimes. Meaning that some family members take long to become converted but if the family is faithful and obedient God will always keep them together forever. :) 

Today we had a training meeting with all of the zone leaders in the mission and we learned about taking upon ourselves the name of Christ and that although we do do it in baptism it's not just a one time thing, that in reality every single day we have to take upon opurselves the name of Christ. in our actions and every Sunday in the sacrament. Moroni 4:3

We learned a bunch of stuff but a few cool facts were that we as a mission every month have the highest amount of baptisms and reactivations and in the month of March, we doubled the amount of people that we had baptized in February... haha pretty crazy.

But anyways, I am doing super well, I'm happy and ready to keep pushing along.

This computer won't let me send pictures, so I'll have to send them next week.

Love you all lots,

Elder Lignell

Monday, March 23, 2015

Week Seventy in Ecuador - March 23, 2015 - Good Success!

Hey family :) well this week has been interesting. We've had some good success finding new people and having lessons with our investigators.

And wow that's amazing that Zach is already home I can't believe it. I hope he had such a wonderful mission. You'll have to give him a hello for me.  

And wow give Jake a giant thumbs up for prom, you'll have to send a bunch of pictures! 

Anyways this week we had some interesting stuff happen. So first off we had a super cool family home evening in the house of a less active. We brought one of our investigators who really wants to find out that this is the true church and she hasn't felt like she's received her answer yet. So anyways we all got there and we sang a hymn and opened with a prayer and in my mind I had no idea what message I could share... everything was just blank, but oddly enough that's what needed to happen, because not having an idea of what theme I could share, I just told everyone to start presenting themselves to get to know each other.  Then from one second to the next all the members were presenting themselves and began to share their testimonies to our investigator and the whole room was filled to the brim with the Spirit. It was so amazing, we actually ended up not sharing any message and the whole meeting just turned into a spiritly guided conversation with our investigator and it was amzing to see how it all folded out and started with me having no idea what to share!  

Now about another investigator, his name is A.and his wife is a member and all their kids are members. He has accepted to be baptized this Saturday that's coming up and I am so excited for him. He loves the gospel now, and he wants to get sealed in the temple (he has been attending marrige management classes at the church). And truly it is just a blessing for me to be able to know him and to of helped him take the step to be baptized :) It was sort of amzing how everything has just worked out with him. He never got the chance to be baptized before because he always had commitments on Sundays but we helped him to get to church and showed him what a blessing it would be for him to take the step of a baptism and woooohhhoooo he's gonna do it Saturday!!! haha I'm pretty excited, I'll send you guys lots of photos :)

And lastly today was interesting because we just barlely escaped from our house! In the morning the door broke when another renter was trying to get in (we share the same door for about 4 families.) So anyways the door was locked but there was no way to open it.... right up until like an hour ago we escaped using the key and holdiong the lock thinggy magiger by hand an miraculously opended the door. It felt so nice to get outside hahaha 

Well anyways I'm doing well. We have 10 baptisms as a zone this week so we have to work like crazy to make sure that every single one gets baptized :) so wish me luck and pray lots for me.

Love you all,

Elder Lignell 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Week Sixty Nine in Ecuador - March 16, 2015 - Super Busy :)

Hey family,
Well this week was pretty average actually... :( unfortunately in our sector right now we aren't finding a lot of new people, well that's not completely true... we are finding people but for the most part they have been a lot of people that have some big problems holding them back from progressing. Which has made me see just how important it is to have the Spirit while youre teaching, and listening.  Missionaries have to be able to see the people that really can change and have the desire to change and those who don't.
For example, we found a nice couple who are just starting out together. They both are about 26 years old and have a ton of questions about the gospel, however they are not legally married. They have a strong belief in God and have a decent understanding of the Bible. It was super interesting to be able to teach them and see their small doubts and worries about the church get resolved. We explained about repentance and the steps that someone needs to fulfil to trully repent and it was great because the husband explained to us one of his prior sins and how he had never felt completely forgiven for it and understood then that he had not passed through all the steps of repentance. He then promised us that he would do his best to repent. :) He came to church this Sunday and liked it a lot! Hopefully we can continue working with them and get them married! All of your prayers are welcome.  

Other than that, we've just been super busy. I had to give an hour lesson to the zone on Saturday about faith, and I felt like it went really well:) I talked about Alma 33:28-31  and Mosiah 24:16-20... I think those are the verses.... but that was cool.  

Oh and mom can you please send me a recipe to do organge chicken or barbeque chicken please!  We want to make some for some of our investigators to show them what food in America tastes like.

Love you all,

Elder Lignell

Monday, March 9, 2015

Week Sixty Eight in Ecuador - March 9, 2015 - Still in Guayaquil And Enjoying It :)

Hey guys I'm back again :)

So you all know, I'm still here in Guayaquil which I now feel like has become my home for the mission considering that I have about 80% of my time here in the city serving. And it's about the same as always; hot, super busy, lots of traffic, robbing's and crazy stuff that you see all the time. For instance, this week I saw a riot in the street where some people burned giant tires blocking all of the traffic. In the bus today the man sitting next to me decide to take out some weed and make a joint hahaha and many more experiences. 

I'm glad everyone is doing well it makes me so happy to hear that all is well at home and that you're all healthy. I'm sorry that you were missing me mom... :( I know I'm pretty loveable it must be really hard not having me there ;) hahahaha (sorry I'm so humble) 

Kudos to Jake for getting accepted to prom :)

Anyways now about this week. It was a great week... we worked super hard and found some great people! And at the end of the week we were blessed to have a stake conference here in the Cisne Stake. And Elder Godoy came from the quorum of the seventies. And wow it was amazing to be able to hear him and learn from him. So first off the stake conference had 3 sessions and the first was Saturday at night and we got there and unexpectingly found one of our investigators inside. Her name is Ana and she is 22. We recently found her last week and started teaching her. And she is super interested. She is reading the Book of Mormon and praying every day asking if the church is true. And she made her way to the session on Saturday to learn more even though we hadn't invited her to that session.

After the session, Elder Godoy asked her if she was a member and she responded that she wasn't and he explained to her the need of one to get baptized and how important it is for her to keep asking God for the answer. Then on Sunday after the general session, he talked to her again but this time with me and my companion too. He then congratulated me for teaching her and told me that he would love to see the photos of her baptism! It was sweet!! I got a photo with Elder Godoy and talked to him for a bit too. He loves basketball and next week he will be in Utah at the Jazz game. However he actually is a Laker fan... haha, but it was sweet to meet him and listen to what he had to say.

He shared some really cool things in the conference like Romans 13:10 which talks about how love is referred to as "fulfilling" something so therefore love has to be shown with actions. Words don't count. So if we love God we have to keep his commandments; if we love our neighbor we have to serve him, etc.

So anyways this week was great!  I'm happy and excited to keep working!

I love you all to death,

Elder Lignell

Monday, March 2, 2015

Week Sixty Seven in Ecuador - March 2, 2014 - Lots of Pictures This Time :)

Well guys it has been another week here in Ecuador and wow it was an interesting one.  

First off, that's too bad about Brighton! That would have been amazing to have them win the State Championships. But I guess Jake will just have to pull it off when he's a senior! haha. 

I'm glad everyone is doing well :)  

And yes it is stressful to be zone leader but I truly am enjopying it and just trying to give it my all while I have this opportunity.  

So anyways about this week. It was actually a really tough one. I felt somewhat inspired after telling you to pray for me because I really needed those extra prayers this week. It was sorta odd but after last Monday every single person we were teaching just decided to not want to keep going to church or prepare for a baptism. Completely random and all at the same moment. And we got left with nobody to teach. And just so you know, being a missionary and being in the street all day having to teach people is hard when you don't have anyone. So we talked to everyone in the street, taught the members and looked everywhere to find new people and for the first three days we found no one... not a single interested person. And honestly, I was getting pretty discouraged, however I prayed non- stop... probably like 30-40 prayers a day just begging for help...but I learned something this week. God a lot of the time doesn't just give us what we want or when we feel sad he doesn't automatically make us be happy. He tests us. He wants to see how far we can go... he wants to see us struggle a little bit and put our own effort in, instead of just using him as a fallback. He did the same thing with his son; he didn't give him things easily when Jesus asked for the "cup to be taken from him" God didn't do it! Because it wasn't his will. Sometimes God has a bigger picture, and we don't see all of it. So what we have to do is be patient, trust him, and try to do all we can by ourselves. Then, through his love, and his grace we will be made strong. We will recieve blessings and we will fulfil the wishes that he has. Like it explains in Ether 12:6, sometimes we recieve our testimony after the trials and failure and struggle, we just need to have faith :) 

So anyways last week was hard, we didn't have too much success but God blessed me and he is helping me everyday. The missionaries we have here are changing, they are working hard and theyre finding new people. So it's wonderful to see that our efforts never are in vain. And to see that just maybe I am helping the missionaries here to be better, and that hope just makes me wanna keep going :) 

So in conclusion I'm doing great, I love where I am and I love working here. I'm excited to keep pushing forward and helping all the people that I can here. 

Elder Lignell           We are holding up 2 fingers because it took our Investigator
                                 2 years before she made the decision to be baptized :)
                                   Picture of Me and Elder Carmona.
                                         Picture of our Zone at a recent zone meeting.
                                           Our Investigator's Baptism Day :)
                                                      Me and My Companion :)