Tuesday, August 28, 2012

"...these 2 are different; they have the Spirit, they work hard..."

So a few stories for this week. The first one is pretty different. It was 9:30 and Elder Saldaña wanted to go to McDonalds. I said, “No, we need to stay in right now...you should've eaten dinner earlier when I did. We had time...” He wasn't giving in and said, “Fine, I'll call the zone leaders,” and I said, “Yeah, they will probably say yes to anything you ask them.” So he said, “I'll call President Hiers.” Of course I didn't think he was serious, so I said, “Yeah, go for it; call him.” So he did, and I thought he was just pretending. Then ten minutes later president called and said, “Hey Elder Bassett, I am bringing McDonalds over to your house to feed your companion. Do you want anything?” I couldn't believe it. So president came over at 10:30 at night (because he got lost coming to our house) to give my companion dinner. I felt pretty bad, but he taught us a good lesson about obedience and how he would rather go out of his way to help us be obedient than have us break a rule. He went upstairs, and our bedroom was clean, but the other missionaries’ was pretty bad, so he talked to them about cleanliness and then went on his way. Elder Saldaña didn't quite understand why that was rude of us to call when he has other things to worry about besides him being hungry, so I hope he doesn't try to do it again.  

So things have been better this week...well not really…just my perspective has been better, and I have been happier. Personal study is tough with all the noises the other missionaries are making, but I usually just go to the office and try to focus. It is still a struggle to have effective companionship study. I drew the line when he wanted to role-play bashing...ha-ha.  I am learning to be patient and just listen and learn from him. I can't say this without sounding snobbish, but there are just some things that I know are important and he doesn’t. He really doesn't like to leave commitments or talk about The Book of Mormon in the first lesson. And when we contact people he ALWAYS says, “We aren't here to convert or baptize you, just talk about Jesus,” because he says it helps get close to people, but it's just not the truth. He thinks we should avoid talking about the restoration when contacting, so that's been tough. I try to talk about how we need to follow preach my gospel, but his attitude about preach my gospel is that just like the old lessons that they had to modify, one day they will realize some things are wrong with preach my gospel and change it...so, basically that he knows better about how to teach people than the first presidency since we are some very intelligent 19 year old boys… Anyways, that's frustrating..

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

First week in Hyrum, 5 weeks in the field

The Logan Utah Temple
Ok, so this was my week first week in Hyrum.. Lots of stuff in this email, so this will be random and unorganized.

The Hyrum house is huge: two story house, four bedroom, three bathroom. I'll send pictures next week. It has not been taken care of at all, really. Things are just really unorganized. I was doing dishes and asked where the plates go, and they said anywhere. You open the cupboards and plates from about a hundred different members that haven’t been returned are everywhere, and nothing is really organized.

Elder Woodward (new from MTC), Elder Isla, Elder Saldaña, & I
Ok so, I'll tell you about Hyrum. Right before I left, Elder Isla said, “Hold strong. Hyrum is known as apostate land, because nobody works at all, and it’s easy to be lazy.” That was encouraging. He is definitely right, though. Right off the bat in the car, I told my new companion I didn't want to listen to music that wasn't "churchy," and he was not happy. It took a while, but eventually he agreed. He keeps trying to push it, but I am not giving in. He is a worker though. He told me right off the bat that he wants to work. His last companion was lazy and just flirted with girls, so he wants to change and work. I am happy with that; we work very hard. He doesn't like some of the small rules and is very against changing at all. But we do work. There are a couple things like at lunch instead of eating he will take a nap, so I can't do anything about that, but he has a good attitude about helping the other missionaries. The two others we live with sleep in everyday and hang out all day pretty much, and we are trying to encourage them by going tracting with them, inviting them to study with us, things like that. Rather than be frustrated and judge them, he tries to help them which is a good example for me. Oh, and we work out at the high school gym: none of the tv's, music, or anybody else there like the other area. The janitors let us in, so that is pretty nice.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Even if I don't baptize everyone I teach, I can help them remember...

Ok. So another week...and my last week in East Ogden! This week has been good.

So the costco story...
I went last week for p-day...and had about 33 dollars worth of stuff..and went up to pay with the members I was with. I thought my missionary card was debit so I tried that, and it didin't work; apparently, it runs as credit. Then I said no big deal and used my US Bank debit card. It didn't work; it said my pin was wrong. I kept trying and was getting frustrated and said to put a few things back, because I only had 17 dollars cash. The lady at the register was a member and said, “No, I'll pay for it.” It's one thing for someone to choose to do that, but she was kind of forced into the situation, and I felt bad, so I said, “No, absolutely not. I'll put it back.” She said no, and I tried a couple more times and said please don't, but she did anyways. I could feel myself turning red and getting frustrated, because I felt bad and don't like putting people out paying for me. Anyway, I called US Bank and tried to blame it on them, because I was frustrated with myself and anyways then I got home and realized I was using my ATM number instead of my debit card number. Stupid...Anyways, I felt pretty dumb. On top of that, I have to figure out what I'm going to do with this bulk food I now have to bring with me up to Hyrum.

So this week I remembered things that I had to do and wrote them down. I remembered in Arizona Mom asked me to make her a playlist probably at least ten times, and I never did it. Anyways...I just wanted to say sorry Mom...I remembered and was just lazy and selfish and never took ten minutes to help you. I ask members to give us their friends and do all these hard things, but I couldn't even "commit" to helping my mom for five minutes. I don't know why, but that has really been bugging me this week, so I am sorry I never did that. Hopefully my mission will teach me to be a little less selfish and lazy.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Spirit or a Righteous Hunch

Another week in the mission field,

This has been an interesting week. It started off that last p-day was not too great on my quest for more charity, and I decided I needed to try a lot harder. He hadn't cleaned all day and his companion, Elder Isla, and I had. We argued for a little bit, and I just kind of lost it on him for not even cleaning up after himself and that I was sick of telling him to clean up his own messes and then doing it myself. We yelled for a little and got nowhere, and I was mad. Later that night, I pulled him off to the side and apologized and said I needed to do better and not get so worked up about things. I was hoping he would have the same type of attitude, but he just said, “Yeah, as a district leader I have a lot of responsibilities that you don't know about, and I don't have time to clean up after myself, because I am so busy worrying about others.” He talked for about fifteen minutes about how he has a lot more on his plate than I do, and I think that was his way of apologizing. I just said, “Ok, you're right,” and decided I would just lead by example and ignore the fact that he won't really help clean up. The frustrating thing is that if he were so busy with his "district duties" he wouldn't spend so much time during the day sitting on the couch or out to eat with other missionaries. But I think in his mind he is doing well. Even if he isn't, oh well, I'm just going to worry about myself.

So, that night I decided I needed to start doing better. We read a talk about purifying and getting rid of things that don't seem like a big deal, but you need to do it to feel the Spirit strongly. We made a list of things as an apartment. Among them were singing non-missionary songs, quoting movies, not starting studies on time, leaving out dishes (that was my input), and a few other things. For the punishments for breaking our rules, I had a really good idea that you had to clean something if you broke a rule. That only lasted the first day before our district leader said it was dumb, and he didn't want to clean stuff anymore, but at least I tried ha-ha.
The one thing Elder Isla and I started to do together was not going to the gym. We both felt the same after reading the talk. Then we prayed about it and decided we won't go to the gym anymore. I know it sounds dumb, but it was a really hard decision, because I really like going to the gym. It's how I relieve stress, but I know I'll feel the Spirit better without that type of influence every morning. The other missionaries ask why we don't go anymore, and we don't really say, but at the same time, our zone leaders decided to stop going, too so that made me feel more confident about it. I have just been doing workouts at home in the morning instead. I really have no reason to complain, because that's what people in other missions do, so that'll be ok. Unfortunately, this means Elder Isla doesn't exercise anymore, but it was his decision, too.  I can't force him to exercise in the morning.

Grandma sent me some 3-2-1-cake mix that is making staying healthy difficult. I love it. I try to avoid cake everyday at lunch but it's hard. ha-ha, thanks grandma! (Don't stop sending them!) Our district leader started ‘unifying our district’ this week, and he says we need to have more district lunches. I am really the only one who doesn't want to do it, because I don't want to waste money. There is this place they like to go; it's outside our zone, and the hamburgers are like seven dollars (but you get free fries). They go occasionally, and I just don't eat lunch that day. It kind of bugs me, because they don't have enough money, so they email their parents and say the mission doesn't give them enough, so their parents send more money. I have a pretty interesting district.

One thing I have grown to love here is Tampico. I have had more of it since I have been here than my whole life combined. EVERY Hispanic house has some. It's kind of funny. Oh, about the gym, I was battling at one point whether or not it was actually the Spirit and not just in my head that I couldn't go. Then Dad's ‘righteous hunch talk’ popped into my head, and I realized it was inviting me to do this for a better cause, so who cares if it was a righteous hunch or the Spirit? I should follow it regardless. After deciding that, I felt a lot better about it.