Friday, November 23, 2012

And we lived in a state of happiness

Hey family!
Well it was another really really quick week here in Mexico! I can't believe how quick they are going by! Sounds like you and dad enjoyed the weekend! The last time cutting the grass for the winter! Pretty crazy!! Is it getting pretty cold up there? Only one trick or treater. That is pretty sad haha. I guess it is exactly the same as all the other years though haha.

It is crazy that everyone is hitting the year mark. Elder Lamm should be getting there also in about a week I believe! There were changes again yesterday but I am still here with Elder Lopez in Tepa. We look forward to being together until at least the 17th of December!

How does Ashley feel about turning 16 pretty soon? Excited out of her mind I am sure to get some freedom haha.

It is true there is Dairy Queen here. But the one where we went is the only one I have seen. It doesn't have all the burgers and everything. It is just a small little one with Blizzards and other ice cream. Way expensive but we only go there every couple months so we figured it was worth it. :)

That is so great the Sister Wasden was able to make it home! I bet that would be quite the thing to finally go home. She must be so happy! :)

It is true I have been really surprised how many people have been writing me! I know it is really a hard thing for people to sit down and write a letter when you won't even get a response for about 3 months. It is really hard to find time. Even here in the mission there almost isn't time so it is even harder back home! I am really grateful for the letters that I do receive.

This week was really great. It had its slow moments but overall it went really well! We are still working a lot with the members here so we can get the church attendance up. We were able to complete our goal of 55 last month and we are working for 65 this month! We are going to keep visiting everyone so we are able to complete this goal!

We tried started a choir yesterday!! But nobody came....haha. We will see how it goes though cuz we want a choir for the branch conference in 3 weeks and for Christmas! We will keep trying!

We also helped a family move today! Ugh that wore me out haha.

We are hoping to get our first reference tonight so we will see how that goes!

All is going well. I am happy. My companion is well. We are getting along really well also!
I hope the Lord continues to bless you! The branch President shared a very simple scripture in church yesterday that I loved. It simply states "and we lived in a state of happiness." I know as we live obediently we will have the spirit with us and we will live in a state of happiness.

Love you all!!

Elder O'Brien :)

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Trifecta

Hi everyone, Jacob is coming up on 3 milestones at the end of the year: his 20th birthday, Christmas and half way through his mission. We would like to invite all of you to write to him to show support at this time. We know he would love to hear from all of you! If you can send a letter, we would encourage you to mail it between now and  November 21st so that it will arrive in late December. His address is on the right column of this page. It takes 2 stamps on a regular envelope to make it to him. Thanks for your support, and don't forget to write other missionaries. We know they all love hearing from home.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sweet Music

Hey family!

Well it was a really good week and it was really good to hear from you all also!

That is really good that McKenzie was able to make it home for the weekend! I am sure you all really enjoyed a good weekend with her! Sounds like it went by really fast though (as does every weekend I am sure)!! You will have a while before seeing her again! That is pretty nuts. I am sure that it will fly by though! It's crazy that Porter is headed out already also! Everyone is leaving!

That is crazy that Lauren is headed off on the mission! She will be about 20 when she leaves right? To Paris! That is nuts! I am sure that she will love that! Tell her good luck with that! All the missionaries here are saying the same thing! That we will all be writing our missionaries instead of them writing us hahahaha. Have you heard if anyone else is planning to leave on the mission yet? We had a conference for the trainers and the trainees today and President Camarillo said that there has been a 450 percent increase in papers sent in to go on missions, with over 50 percent of those applications coming from girls! Elder Lucas just told me that the true data are that before 700 applications were received a week and now over 4000!!!! Everyone is responding to the call to serve! Pretty awesome huh! :) We are going to see many changes! I have thought though the harder we are working the harder the adversary will be working! It has come to that point in the history of the world when we have to be that much better!

This was another really great week though! We didn't have any dramatic events. We almost had Maria  ready to get baptized but she still needs just a bit more preparation. She wants to feel a little more sure about her decision. We are really working with her so she can develop the faith to get baptized. 

After the conference today we ate buffet tacos in TacoPlaza which was really good. We then went to eat at Dairy Queen! Oh so good! :) I got a strawberry cheese cake. Tell McKenzie to be jealous! ;)

We have had some really great lessons lately. We have really been looking for ways to be better as missionaries. Last night we shared a lesson with a recent convert looking for a reference. We read in Mosiah 16 I believe it is. The chapter where it is Abinadi reading the words of Isaiah. It is a short chapter but so powerful about the atonement! At one point it describes all Christ did for us and he didn't open his mouth. We then shared how much he has done for us and now it is time for us to open our mouths and share it with everyone else! It was so powerful!

Today I got letters from Lexi, Aubrey, Elder Beus, and Elder Mills. It sounds like everyone is doing really really good! 

Today is also Dad's birthday! Happy Birthday dad!! :)

Well we don't have much time but have a really good week. Read your scriptures, say your prayers, go to church. Love others!
The gospel of Jesus Christ. Live it. Love it. Share it!

Love you all!

Elder O'Brien :)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Live it. Love it. Share it.

Hey fam!!
Well it was another really great week. I really felt good about this one! I'm not sure why but it felt even greater that the others! :)
That is so awesome that you will be able to go to the temple open house! It will be such a blessing to hear President Monson speak!! I heard Lexie came home this weekend with a boyfriend! Tell her to be careful! ;) haha. Which picture did McKenzie put up on facebook? That is awesome about the blog! I hope everyone is really enjoying it! I am enjoying writing it.
That is crazy that it is already Dad's birthday coming up! man he is getting old! Hahaha. Don't tell him I said that. You can put it on the blog though ;)
Ashley got to work in the temple! That is way awesome! She was one of the shoe people like when we went to Twin Falls? She sure sounded like she enjoyed it in her email to me!

Man you all had a lot to teach this week! I'm sure Ashley enjoyed a break though. That is a way funny story about Bayler! Let him know that I owe him candy also! Ha. ;)
Wow sounds like you sent the whole store in the Christmas slash birthday gifts. I am planning on sending some little things to everyone. It depends on if they get done on time or not. We will see how it goes! Be excited! :)
This week went extremely quick! We had a bit more success this week but everything is still pretty slow here in Tepa. We are really trying to focus in on the members. We hope as a result of that they will have much success with missionary work here if their own testimonies are very strong. We are looking for people to teach but still pretty dry. It is all good though. I know I am doing all I can and the Lord will continue to bless me, my companion, and the people here. My companion and I asked to talk this week in church in hopes of being an inspiration to our members here. My companion spoke like an apostle, and I feel I did really well also. It was amazing how reverent the people were and they just listened to us. Oh it was such an experience. It talks about so much in the book of mormon about teaching with authority and power. We are given authority by being called as missionaries but we receive power through righteousness. I could really feel the power of the spirit manifested through us this Sunday. The spirit could actually be felt very strong there. I LOVED IT!!! :)
We also did divisions this week and I went to Guadalajara again. I got to see a lot of people I knew back there! I was with a newer missionary. His name is Elder Ryan Scott from Salt Lake City, UT. He is a way cool guy. He only has 4 months and his Spanish is really good. I was extremely impressed! It was really great to work with him and learn from him and his example. His dad is a convert also which is really cool. It was awesome to get to work with him for a day!
Well I am looking forward to another great week! I know that the Lord is blessing you and will continue to do so according to your faith and obedience. Always be grateful for the rough moments cuz they make the good ones that much sweeter. Be an example and always do what you know what is right. Remember....Live it. Love it. Share it. The Gospel of Jesus Christ. 
Love you all!
Elder O'Brien :)