This Is Peru!

This Is Peru!

September 15, 2010

2nd Week!!!

Hola familia!!
How is everyone doing? I sure hope everyone is well! Wow this week has been crazy and its flown by so very quickly. To start off, Sunday went quite well. However our Devotional was cancelled due to construction in the gym. No good! But it was still a good time. Some elders in our district practiced to sing "Come Thou Fount" in Sacrament meeting, but we weren't able to because another elder wanted to sing and he left today. So, he took precedence apparently. BUT, on our Temple walk we were able to sing up on the Temple grounds which was really cool. No need for a piano because we did it accapella, or however you spell it! So that was really neat. We also have learned the Tongan hymn, Folofola mai au si su'. Or something like that! I have a video of us singing it so maybe I'll figure out how to send that to you eventually. Later on Sunday, we watched the Joseph Smith movie. I. Love. That. Movie. I've watched it before, but just being here at the MTC really touched me, and I felt the Spirit so much stronger than before watching it. It was fantastic.
Yesterday we had a Devotional and the speaker was Elder Brian Richards and his wife. They gave us a great message about missionary work! He had us watch a video by Jeffrey R. Holland of the 12 Apostles, titled "Why is it so hard?" Why does missionary work have to be so hard?" he said. It got me thinking. It is the truth, it offers eternal families, and it brings the most pure form of happiness that we as humans can possibly experience... Right? Right... So, then why is it hard? Well, he offers a perfect answer. He says, "I am convinced that missionary work is hard because salvation is not a cheap experience. How can we expect it to be easy, when for Him, it never was? The atonement will carry you when you are discouraged, rejected, spit on, or cast out. Because you are on the journey that never was meant to be easy. But it always will be worth it." Personally, I could not have asked for a better answer. Why would I be out here if I didn't know for myself, without a doubt in my mind, that this work is the truth? The answer is, I wouldn't. But thankfully I have a testimony of this gospel and I am so grateful for that!!! The days can be really long and hard here, but I keep chugging along as I cling to my testimony that is growing stronger every day. Now, just because he talks about missionary work, the same thing can be said about life. Life was never meant to be easy. It was meant to try us and test us. How can we expect to grow without trials? I am grateful that my Heavenly Father loves me enough to put me through trials. I learn so much, and I'm so grateful. Sunday was SUCH a good day. Very needed!!
Mom and Dad, thank you for your letters! I always look forward to them. Even though if you, Dad, were falling asleep writing mine at 1 am!! haha. Thank you for the good advice, and I will be reading the booklet you gave me on my flight to Peru. Apparently other books aren't allowed in the MTC. So yeah! No worries! OH YEAH. I got my flight plans. I leave on September 22nd!! I have to be ready to go at 3am. Our flight leaves SLC at around 6. So everyone be awake and ready for me to call you and chat!!! I have two layovers. One in Dallas, and one in Miami. So I will see what I can do to call you then! If you can, send me some extra cash in the next package, I will need it... Haha. Muchas gracias por su paciencia! Mom! Ah! I loved your letter. Thank you so much! I love you so much, and I miss you tons as well! I couldn't have asked for a better mother. Thank you for being so fantastic. Theres no need to be sad! I'm doing the Lords work happily and lovingly! I'm exactly where I need to be. I am trying to be more Christ-like and I can safely say that I already basically know how because of the example you and dad have both set for me. I am so lucky to have such strong parents.
Anyway my time is about up! Thank you for everything. Keep me in your prayers. I don't ahve Pattis address, so please tell her thank you for me and that I am so happy that she has kept me in mind! She is amazing. Tell her that I really love her!! Congrats on the Jeep, Bridge. :) Don't be too crazy. Keep telling everyone to write me! I miss you all so much! Ethan, its okay about the game, keep your head high stud. Tanner! Thank you for you letter buddy!!! I love you and you are all in my prayers. I'll be sending you another hand written letter with other details.
Elder Jordan Van Christensen

September 12, 2010


Hola mi familia!!!!
Man there is so much to share I don't know where to begin!! Well, first off, you gotta know that I am absolutely loving it here at the MTC! Its such a spiritual place and I can feel the gift of tongues as I do my best and be meticulously obedient. My companion Elder ******** was sent home yesterday due to worthiness issues. :/ NO bueno. I am really sad for him, but I am also grateful that he is getting things fixed! Hopefully in a year or so he will decide to try it again. His mission call stays the same so I might even be able to be his trainer! BUT, this is a perfect example of procrastinating your repentance. Boys, I'm talking to you! Don't wait until you're on your mission. Very bad idea. Anyway! We had a great devotional yesterday from Elder Lowell Powell of the Seventy about choices. A quote that he shared was "Choices reveal your true nature." How true that is! It was such a great devotional. My new companion(s) are Elder Thurman, and Elder Leonard. They are great! It's definitely a little awkward being in a threesome, but oh well! I'll just do my best. Our district is soo great! We have two Elders from American Samoa, and they are way good at singing! They taught us a Samoan hymn and it is so sweet. I have felt myself change in this past week alone! It is amazing to me. I miss all of you so much and being here has made me realize how much I truly love all of you.
Unfortunately I only have 30 minutes on the computer! Ah!! Well, what else, OH! I got the care package!! I love it! Really anything is good to have. Maybe some more hard candy, peachie o's, and gummie bears! Also, the ring!! My size is 9.5. I would like to get that before I leave in 2 WEEKS!! I can't believe its already been a week. Time truly flies.. Sunday was so great. We had some good meetings with good lessons taught. Identifying the Spirit and knowing our Heavenly Father loves us just to name a couple.
Keep using Dear Elder. Don't email me on here... Reading it drains my time I have to write you! Just FYI, oh and send me my navy blue BYU shirt! I don't have it here. (I think).
On Tuesday I think, Elder ******** and I were at the front desk trying to contact someone who he could talk to about his issue, when all of a sudden I saw Tim! Yes, Tim Taylor haha. I was very surprised, but I guess Hunter's ankle is still giving him some issues. So he came home on a medical release. I really hope he gets everything resolved and that he doesn't have to have another surgery. That would be terrible. But it was good to see Tim, I told him to tell you that I love you guys!!
I have really been trying to keep the spirit with me, and I've found that you literally have to be obedient 100% of the time! Its hard to do, but I've been doing my best I have to remember to repent daily for the things that I do wrong. For gym, I have been playing a lot of futbol which is a lot of fun! One of the rules is no headers, which I have a hard time obeying... especially when you have a perfect cross right in front of the goal just begging to be headed in! Pero... esta bien. I have learned a lot of spanish! I have learned to pray, bear my testimony, and were learning to conjugate the verbs. Present tense/past/and future. So I will try to do that for you when I close this letter. Only 10 minutes left!
Bridger and Ethan, thank you for your letters guys! Bridge, did you really get a double lincoln? Like, for reals? IF so... I'm impressed. Haha and Ethan! Way to go holmes! I'm glad you're loving football! But when you get both hands on the ball, GRAB it!! :) Haha I love you guys so much and I miss you! Keep writing me about whatever is going on in your life okay? I love hearing about it.
Mom and Dad! Thank you so much for your letters. I'm glad you were able to get my letter okay! I'm sorry it was short, I didn't have much time to write. But I will be printing off some pictures and I will send them via the mail shortly... Mom, its okay to be sad, but just know that I love you and I truly do feel your prayers, as I do everyone elses. I am so grateful for that. I hope that everyone will keep me in their prayers these next two weeks. Our district is now SYL (speak your language) all the time except in gym and class. It is pretty hard to do, but with the power of the Holy Ghost I know that I will be able to learn a TON. Dad, keep the boys in line for me! Even though I gave bridger the keys to be the man of the house while I'm away. Thank you for everything you have done for me. I love you so much. I couldn't ask for a better example in my life. You are the man. Yo se que la iglesia de Jesucristo es verdadera. Yo se que Jose Smith fue llamado a Dios. Yo se que la oracion es muy importante por nuestro Salvacion. Yo se que Jesucristo es nuestro Salvador. Yo se que El Libro de Mormon es la palabra de Dios. I love this gospel. I love all of you soo much. You are all in my prayers. Choose the right and stay strong boys. I know you can do it.
I miss all of you so much! Keep writing me!
Love your son and brother,
Elder Jordan Van Christensen