Monday, October 26, 2009

Well this is the last week of the transfer and we know that one of us is going to leave Boliver. Oh I heard that there is some confusion as to where I’m at. I’m in the city of Bolivar in the Provincia of Buenos Aires but my zone is the Zone of Olavarría, so I go to Olavarría every Monday so because of that I tend to talk about Olavarría a bit.

Well it’s been a couple of trying transfers for me. It’s really sad to see people who don’t want to realize their potential. That is exactly what I’ve had to deal with all this time here in Bolivar. However this has really made me realize what potential we all can have. We are Children of Our Heavenly Father. He loves us and he wants Lo Mejor (the absolute best) for each and every one of us. We have to do so little in order to achieve all of this potential, to receive all of the blessings God has for us! What an amazing thing it is to be a member of his church and to have that knowledge! I’m very thankful for the opportunity I have to share that with everyone.

Thanks for everything everyone!

Elder Sands

Monday, October 19, 2009

This week was amazing and also more of the same. We had divisions and I have to say it was nice to do a little bit of work this week.

After that we got to listen to Elder Bowen. He is the President of this area, Argentina and Uruguay. He talked a lot about obedience which is something that everyone needs to take more seriously. If we're all obedient the world will be a far better place.

I heard about the bug that's been going around up there, right now it's really hot in Bolivar. I don't have any time left but remember the Lord loves us and that is why we have commandments!

Elder Sands

Monday, October 12, 2009

What a week! Due to the robbery we have to change apartments so we did that this week and we didn't seem to do much more unfortunately.

Well I heard you have some days with temperatures in the 20's that sounds like something I don't really miss. It was below freezing one day since I've been here. It was in my last area and there was a little bit of snow but it didn't stick or anything but all of the people were in their houses staring out the window "enjoying" it because it's not exactly something they ever see. As for me, after this last crazy winter I'm fine with no snow for a couple of years. Now however it's about the perfect temperature probably around 70-80 degrees, but I'm not really sure but it's nice. Also one thing about here that is probably interesting is that it is almost always windy and I mean always. This in combination with their dirt roads which is actually really fine sand makes for perfect conditions to have tons of dust in the air. Also because of the humidity we have a lot of storms and for those of you, who've been in Spokane forever, not rain like there, but real pouring down rain. I didn't know it could rain so much. They have little canals everywhere especially in the barrios where the dirt roads are and they fill up in so little time. It makes it really fun to get around jumping over streams in the streets and gigantic puddles of mud in the barrios. Thankfully Bolivar is really nice or lindo as they always say here so it's not too bad.

This week Elder Bowen the Area President is going to be here in Olavarría to talk to the missionaries and the members. I'm really looking forward to it. Hopefully I'll be able to get some pictures of Bolivar before I leave as one of us is going in a couple of weeks so we'll see who it is. I've been reading the old testament really fast when I have extra time, which I shouldn't ever have, but it's there now so I might as well use it. I found out that Moses was supposed to talk to the rock to have it bring forth water the second time (see Numbers 20:2-12). Instead, he just smote it and for that he and Aaron were denied the privilege of entering the promised land. There are a lot of lessons in this. First how many times do we think that our way is better or easier, when really all we're going to do is deprive ourselves of blessings that could have been ours because we were trying to do it our way? Second the Lord wants us to progress. The first time the Israelites needed water he healed the water that was already there. The second time he smote the rock which requires more faith right. The third time he was told to talk to the rock where still more faith would be required. Moses lacked the faith the third time and did it the old way rather than stretching himself and obey a new commandment. For that, like I said before, he was denied entrance into the promised land. It is the same with us; we need to ever improve in order to enter the promised land or God's presence. I want to progress! The scriptures uses the word damned a lot. This is more literal that we might think; a damn stops water from progressing right. That is what eternal damnation is, the stopping of progression. Let's all strive to be better and progress to grow and to learn from every experience we have!

Thank you all for your love and support.

Elder Levi Sands

Monday, October 4, 2009

As you might now know there was a robbery of our apartment. Here is how it went. We got home way late one night as my companion is always spending tons of time in members home when we shouldn't be doing that. We get in and I went to the bathroom and he went to the bedroom and saw broken glass. Then someone opens the door and comes in with a flare gun and points it at him and starts asking him for very specific things. The other one had a wooden pole and was telling me to get down to the ground but he was all drugged up and I couldn't understand him. So I was saying the best I could, "what do you want, I can't understand you". That was pretty funny and you could tell I was really calm especially given the circumstances. I finally understood boca and pisa or mouth and floor. Oh ok you want me to get on the ground ok. So I did that and they took some stuff then left.

During all of this I was really thinking man I'm probably not going to be able to sleep tonight very much and was kind of annoyed because of that. And we didn't call the cops. Here they are not like they are in the states. Be thankful for them, they're amazing there. My companion was ticked because they took a bunch of stuff from him that he shouldn't have had like his mp4 player and other stuff. I'm kind of glad for that. I was really calm and I take that as from God indicating to me that "you're doing your best given all of these hard circumstances with your comp and everything, so I'm going to bless you with peace." I'm still rather calm though I'm annoyed as my comp is using this as an excuse to not work at all, so we did nothing this week. There is a blessing to that as I do have a lot of study time.

We have Elder Bowen of the Seventy coming and he is apparently really hard on missionaries. Maybe he'll guilt my companion into doing something, so I'm very excited to hear what he has to say.

We found a new apartment and are going to move in Wednesday and we have a zone conference tomorrow. Interviews I can't wait!

General Conference was amazing, I loved it so much, it was so spiritual and I got to listen to it in English and that was kind of nice. The talk that may have applied the most to me right now was the one on temperance. I don't think I am as humble as I should be and I'm not as patient as I should be and right now I have regular glass protecting me. I need to have tempered glass so that when Satan throws stuff my way I won't be injured, but rather be protected and just continue on in the work of the lord. Also the talk by Elder Holland was very strong, what an amazing talk. And President Uchtdorf's talk about love in the first session was really powerful. Also that talk from President Monson; "what good thing did you do today and ask it every day" is a great thing to do. And lastly what good advice Elder Ballard gave on interviews or something. Thanks Dad and Mom for all of the gospel stuff we did before I left. I really appreciate it now. I know that it's my preparation from you and fantastic leaders that is what is keeping me motivated to be obedient despite the circumstances under which I'm in right now. Thank you.

And thanks so much for everything and send that package with the things I need replaced and hide the valuable stuff well. (Levi had his camera, shaver and some clothes taken)

Thanks so much!