Monday, November 30, 2015

November 30th, 2015

How amazing is it to be instructed by men called of God to represent his son Jesus Christ. This last week we had a visit by the presiding area authority which was incredible. He shared such inspiring doctrine that was truly needed by our mission. Elder Uceda came and bore his testimony of the divine work of salvation and what the Lord expects of us now days. It was such a sweet experience to be able to hear from him and to know what the Prophet has asked of us. The Lord is hastening his work and it is easy to see because he is asking even more of us in our times. Something that really impacted me was the He said we no longer can be superficial missionaries nor superficial members. The Lord doesn't want us to just go through the motions or even just do the minimum. He asks us to give all of us. Everything we have. I love the movie Facing the Giants. This last week we shared a clip from it with our zone. There is a lineman that needs to carry another lineman on his back all the way to the fifty yard line and his coach tells him that he needs to do it blindfolded. Everyone yells at him and says he can't do it, even himself says he can't do it, but the coach knew that he could do it. He is there with him the entire way chanting him on, yelling his name saying "DON'T GIVE UP! YOU CAN DO IT!" By the end the lineman is at the other side of the field in the end zone. What the coach says after is key, "I don't want you to go to the 30 nor the 50 but rather I want your BEST!" The mission has set goals for us, the prophet has set goals for us, even the Lord has set goals for us, but what He wants isn't for us to reach the goals. He wants our BEST. That means we will not just reach the goal but we will go above and beyond. As my zone watched this clip they began to cry because they knew that the Lord was telling them at that very moment that he wants our best. 

When I left my old zone I was worried that I didn't do everything that I could do, but as we listened to Elder Uceda my prayer was answered. He shared with us a few key points that the Lord wants us to focus on as a mission and as he shared them I realized that what we had done in the zone Laureles was exactly what he shared with us. I have no doubt that the reason why we were able to have so much success in that zone was because of divine revelation. I know with all my heart that my companion and I were led in sharing everything we shared in our zone and I know that the missionaries were able to understand that it was what the Lord wanted and needed at that time. My trust is in the Lord and I have no doubt whatsoever that he directs this work. I love the gospel with all my heart and know that we will only be able to do what the Lord wants us to do as we put our faith and trust in him and allow him to work miracles in our lives.

Here in Huaraz things have been a little difficult, but I know that I just need to have more faith and put all my trust in the Lord that the hearts of men shall be softened. Although trials and challenges come into my life, I won't allow them to stop putting my trust in the Lord and know that this is his work and he is the one that directs it.

I love you all so much and hope you have a great week!
Elder Thorpe

Oh I forgot to say, this last week we were in Trujillo for our leadership meeting and we went to the temple! Also I was able to say hello to everyone in Moche one last time. It was such a wonderful experience to see them all again.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

November 23rd, 2015

This week I have learned a simple doctrine that has always been in my mind, but now I understand it more fully and that is the doctrine of fasting. It is incredible to know how much the Lord blesses his children as they fast. I was reading in Isaiah 58 about fasting and I feel like I more fully understand the principle and the real reasons why we fast. What a blessing it is to be able to fast and ask our Father in Heaven for the blessings that he explains in Isaiah 58. It is so incredible to know how much the Lord wants to bless us if you just give up a little of what we have.

Today was such a good day, well this whole week has been great! I arrived to my new area on Wednesday morning and let me tell you, I love it! Saying bye to all the people in Moche was super hard, but I know I am in the place that the Lord needs me right now. Huaraz is really similar to Utah. It is a valley that is surrounded by mountains. I love it so much. something that I love even more is that it rains here every day! I have been missing the rain way too much. Huaraz is at about 12,000 feet, and so you could say it is a lot higher than Utah. We actually went up to a lake today that is at about 20,000 feet. I have no idea how everyone made it in our zone, but it sure was a team effort. We were hiking for about 2 hours all up hill. We had a few areas that we had to grab onto a rope to be able to climb up the rocks. As the missionaries would climb I would yell to them, "Hold tight to the Iron Rod" It was such a good experience for our zone even though it was really difficult. 

The people here are really different from the people in Trujillo. They are a lot harder to teach because they don't want to accept just about anything of our church, but what can I say, I still love teaching the gospel. I am so glad that I have the opportunity to serve here and for the love that I feel from everyone around me. Thank you for always sending your love towards my way. It really means a lot to me. I love you all so much and hope that you have a wonderful week!

Elder Thorpe

Monday, November 16, 2015

November 16th, 2015

Well my streak here in Moche has come to an end. I have been assigned to a new area and a new zone called Huaraz! I am super sad to leave, but yet super excited to get up to Huaraz and serve the people there. And when I say get up I really mean go up.. Huaraz is up in the mountains and so it  is going to be a different experience than what I have been used to. I am super excited because it is cold up there and I am so ready to take a break from the heat! Huaraz seems really pretty, so when you have some time you should go look it up.

I'm going to try to be brief today because my companion and I have so much we have to do today. 
This last week was super good. A lot of it was saying goodbye to a lot of people here, which was one of the hardest things I have ever done. It is like saying goodbye to part of my family. I love these people so much and I am going to miss them dearly. I know that one day I will return to see them and I know that I will be welcomed home when I do come. 

Since this was our last Sunday together, Elder Nielsen and I decided to make Hamburgers and 6 Pizzas! That's right, 6! They were so good. We asked a member to borrow her mini oven and so in our room Elder Nielsen and I made the dough and put all the toppings on our Pizzas. The cooking lessons at Grandma's house truly do pay off! 

I want you all to know that I love Moche and I know the Lord sent me here for a reason and being here I have understood what that reason was. I know that the Lord has more plans for me and like Nephi says, I will go and do what the Lord hath commanded me. I love you all and hope you have an incredible week!

Elder Thorpe

Monday, November 9, 2015

November 9th, 2015

There has always been something that I have loved that Dad used to always say to all of the primary kids that would be baptized when they turned 8 years old and that was, "As important as it is to notice when the Holy Ghost is in your life, even more important is to notice when it isn't in your lives so that you may figure out what you need to do to get the Holy Ghost back in your life."
As the days and weeks have gone on I have started to notice that recognizing the times that the spirit isn't in my life has become a lot harder. Not because I'm not able to notice it not in life but because the times that it isn't in my life have become less and less. Something that I have learned to do here on my mission is trust in the lord in all things. The Lord doesn't say that we are going to baptize all of the people we come in contact with. Maybe we won't even baptize a lot of them, but what he has said is if we put our trust and confidence in him and allow him to do his work, we will be blessed with his spirit and guided in what we say and what we do. Maybe I'm not as great of a teacher as Christ was or as loving, but I know that I can be led by his Spirit to do his work.

This week has been a pretty good week. They keep on going by faster and faster and I'm not seeing any way of slowing down how quick the weeks go. I love how much God is in his work and how much he loves his children. This week Elder Nielsen and I did a lot of service for a family that are investigating the church. Their son (Daniel) was baptized about a month ago and they are looking like they will be following his example. We are really excited for them and their desires to do what is right. I'm going to have a really hard time saying bye to this family when I leave the area.

Well, I love you all so much. I hope you have a wonderful week and I look forward to writting next week!

Elder Thorpe

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

November 2nd, 2015

There has been one scripture on my mind that has helped me realize how important it is to be an example. Not only the scripture of 1 Timothy 4:12 but as well as 1 John 5:2. If we want to show the Children of God that we love them, we ourselves must love God above everything else and the way to love God above everything else is by keeping his commandments. I've been thinking a lot about that this last week and how by being an example to those around us by keeping the commandments of God, we are showing them that we love them. It is as simple as that. We had an experience with an investigator family that is preparing to be baptized within the next few weeks that helped me understand how we are able to love our own children even more. The wife and husband have both gone to church for over a month now and both have the desires to get baptized. They have 2 children that they love so dearly and would do everything for them. The wife has accepted to be baptized but the husband feels like he wants to know more. We asked them a simple question which was, "Since the time that you have been coming to church and keeping the commandments, what changes have you seen in your family?" The reponse of both of them filled the room with the spirit as they were able to realize that the Lord was blessing them so much in their family. We then turned to the scriptures and read Mosiah 2:41. They received those blessings because they were keeping the commandments of God. We then asked, "What do you want for your children in the future?" Both responed, we want the best. We want them to be happy and not getting into trouble. As they said that my heart was filled with the wise words that John gave us, "If we love God's children (even our own children), we will love God." And we love God by keeping his commandments. We must be examples to our children if we want the best for them. We invited the husband to pray and ask God if this is what he would have him do which he agreed to do. 

I have no doubt that they will be baptized. They are such a wonderful family that has finally found what they have been searching for. I love the happiness that the gospel brings to the family and how much love and blessings Heavenly Father shows to those that keep his commandments. My desires are to always live my life according to the commandments of my father, that I may have the eternal blessings that come from righteous living. The blessings are endless. I have seen them in my life as well as in the lives of those that I have taught. My heart aches to see such wondeful people not accept the gospel because I know how much they could be blessed. No wonder the first principle that we teach to those that we visit is "The Gospel Blesses Families."

I love and pray for you always. I hope you have an amazing week.
Elder Thorpe