Tuesday, September 23, 2014

San Diego!!!!!!

I MADE IT TO SAN DIEGO!!!!!! Woop woop! First, it is beautiful here. Second, it's really hot. I came during what I guess was a pretty bad heat wave, so I'm missing my perfect Mexican weather, but it's really not that bad. I guess I should start with my last week in the CCM since I missed out on emailing last week.

We partied all day everyday - missionary style. My district and I loved our last week today. We sang a special musical number for our teachers (I miss them so much!) and I sang in our sacrament meeting on Sunday (yeah fun fact President Pratt, the CCM President, happened to be in our meeting, so I sang for him......luckily he sat behind me or I would've been freaking out). We had a party the night before we left, and at 2 am on Tuesday morning I left Mexico.....so sad, but happy too. 

Then I came to this awesome place that we now call San Diego! So cool! We got to tour the Mormon Battalion museum, which was super cool (I highly recommend it as a sweet tour spot). Our first day was full of training and interviews, which is always fun.

And then the day came when I would finally meet my trainer. I said goodbye to Elder Johansen (whom I miss dearly) and hello to Elder Dietrich (Payten is his first name if you want to creep). I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I can tell you that it was definitely not Elder Dietrich. We are about as different as two people can be, which is hilarious because we actually get along great! I definitely can't be my normal, Disney-quoting self around him, but we laugh a lot nonetheless. He is AMAZING at street contacting! He can talk about anything with anybody, so that has been a huge blessing for me to learn from.

I don't have any investigators to report because the work here is rather slow. I work in the Sweetwater Spanish Branch, and I live in Lemon Grove, California. My area is a walk/bus/trolley area, and there are 3 sets of missionaries for our little branch (about 40 people were at church this past sunday). Only 2 active families live in our area, so we don't really get fed often. 

Some highlights of my week are
1) Church was all in Spanish, and it was crazy.....still working on the whole Spanish thing
2) Some drunk guy kissed me on the cheek and told me to go to Christiantown (not a real place) because they needed my help.....that was terrifying.
3) I'm out of time.......I LOVE YOU GUYS!!!!!!!!!!! My spiritual though will be extra awesome next week!

I LOVE YOU GUYS SO MUCH! Please keep on praying for me because I need the help!

Elder Dahl

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Last week at the CCM

It´s my last week here at the CCM!!!!!!! Holy guacamole this is loco.  I don´t have too much to say this week, so this one will be short.

Our motto this week has been "So much work, so little time." We have about 39 different assignments everyday that always need to be completed, and we really only have time for about 3 of them, so that´s fun. The language is going pretty well; our district did Solo Español a few times this week, and we still manage to have a great time. I don´t even cry when natives talk to me anymore! Although they normally still need to repeat what they said very slowly. 

Elder Johansen and I have been really busy this week with our zone leader responsibilities. We had to introduce a new district to life at the CCM (that new district is awesome by the way, probably completely thanks to us, haha just kidding), and we had to take care of some other things within the zone. Fast and testimony meeting was so fantastic. We had people going up constantly, and I said some things that I didn´t even realize I knew how to say in Spanish! The Spirit was so strong and I loved it so much.

Also our district plays volleyball all the time, and I must say we are getting dangerously awesome. It´s super fun.

We got to go to the Mexico City Temple Visitor´s Center, which was awesome. We took a lot of pictures, and I understood 97% of everything that was said (they gave us the guides that spoke Spanish) and they talked PRETTY FAST! It was amazing. HOWEVER, the whole time I´ve been here at the MTC I´ve been excited to go to the visitor´s center because they sell some super sweet scripture cases there, and I REALLY wanted one for my Spanish scriptures. I was so worried about getting those scriptures for seriously the past week! Even on the bus ride there I was thinking about, "How can I get to the tienda fast enough to get those scripture cases!?"

Well plot twist, we started the tour and I just felt awful. I was right next to the House of the Lord, and all I could think about was some fancy scripture case? Seriously Elder Dahl? Did you come to Mexico to get a scripture case!? Well my answer is- Absolutely not. I came down here to serve the Lord, and to bring others to the happiness that I have through following his restored gospel. Did I end up getting the scripture cases? Nope. Although my group was one of the first ones, the store ran out before I got there. Was I disappointed? Yes because I let myself get carried away in something that really DOESN´T MATTER! I can get cases like that some other time, and I´m glad that I decided to live in the moment as soon as I walked into that visitor´s center. I´m not sure if that story made sense, but I´m out of time. Live in the moment and do all that you can to improve not only yourself, but the world around you. Always remember that there is someone praying for you in Mexico (well for the next six days because after that it will be from San Diego!). Also, I won´t be able to email next week because I´ll be traveling on my P-Day. I love you guys!

Elder Dahl

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Week 4 and all is well

I have no idea what I´m going to write about today...so this should be fun.

Week 4 has been amazing! In all honesty I am LOVING my life right now. I am finally getting along with my companion really well, and we are teaching lessons with unity, so that´s awesome. No we did not celebrate Labor Day here in Mexico, but the Mexican Independence Day is in two weeks so we practiced the Mexican National Anthem.....I still have no idea how it goes, but that´s ok.

On Wednesday and Thursday of this past week we did "Solo Español" which means we could ONLY speak in Spanish, NO ENGLISH AT ALL! So naturally I was terrified. However, those two days were super great! We planned in Spanish, played volleyball in Spanish, ate in Spanish, and did everything in SPANISH! The best part was that I actually understood probably 95% of what everyone was saying to me! I also don´t internally cry my eyes out when natives try to ask me questions! So that´s some major improvement.

Mexico is still crazy, but fun. The power has gone out quite a few times this week, which is always a good time. Elder Johansen and I went bird watching while reviewing our goals, and I cannot get over Mexican birds. I´ll send a picture of a parrot we found (Lauren might have to zoom in the picture so you can see it).

But really the main event of this week has been my spiritual growth. Life has been more or less the same for my day to day dealings, but I´ve had some really WONDERFUL experiences this week. I´ll share one of them.

Hermana Arno gave a lesson about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. But in it we talked about the Atonement for a good portion of it. Alma 7:11 says, 
11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.

Now where in there does it say that Christ suffered for our sins? Well it actually says that 2 verses later, but it is not included in the list found in verse 11. So what is verse 11 trying to tell us. I´ve had this lesson over and over again in my life, but this time it finally struck me that I NEEDED to apply this to my life. This day happened to be pretty rough for me. I was really struggling with my companion that morning, and it´s overall really complicated to explain so I won´t. I had felt so alone that morning, feeling like I had to come up with some way to make this companionship work, and I had tried everything I thought I could possibly do. But as we talked about this verse, throughout the entire lesson I just felt like I could hear, "I know EXACTLY how you feel. Now let me help you." I know that this was the Holy Ghost whispering to me comfort and peace from the Savior.

I am super out of time, so I´ll make this short. My companion and I are now friends. We don´t just tolerate each other, but we build each other up, and we help one another succeed. I wouldn´t trade him for anyone in the world because I have come SO CLOSE with my Savior this week, and I know that Elder Johansen is my companion to help me grow and become more Christlike.

So there are about 37 other things that I want to say, but alas, I must end. This email was super random, I promise that next week´s will be more focused and awesome. OK love you guys!

Elder Trevar Wayne Dahl

P.S. Elder Richard G. Scott´s devotional at the Provo MTC about Communication with God. Look it up if you want to improve your life in so many more ways than you can possibly imagine. I love this gospel.