Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Week 42: This is our Change, This is our Change!!

Dear Family and Friends,

Wow, what a week!!! It was full of a lot of running around and getting stuff done. Elder Kern and I did two divisions this week and boy did it tucker us out. Divisions are fun in that we do different things and it mixes things up, but I love being with my companion, not necessarily just Elder Kern, just being with my companion in general. :) Anyways, we just had changes and...... I'm staying again!!! :D Haha, Elder Kern and I are going on another change together! This will mark our 4th change together. We are both really excited! We've got a lot of plans and a lot of goals we want to fulfill. We keep telling each other, "This is our change, this is our change!!" We didn't have a baptism this last change but we know what we need to do better in order to get one. We are teaching about 5 families right now and we have about 3 more that are future investigators. :) We really want to help baptize a family this change and we know what we need to do in order to get it done!

I want to share two experiences from this week. First, this last week I was trying to figure out what I should teach about. I was looking at the results of our district from the last week and I wasn't seeing anything that I needed to address, our district was doing really well. I sat there thinking and pondering and then it occurred to me...maybe as a district we don't need to improve anything really pertinent, but maybe there are things that the individual missionaries need to improve on. And from there, I remembered my personal study on "Humility" and "Charity, Love" from a few days ago. I started basing my class on that and the class was basically centered on the fact that we have personal weaknesses that we cannot overcome on our own. We need to humble ourselves and seek the Lord's will and help in overcoming our challenges. We also need to show our love for God in doing hard things, not because we want to, but because He wants us to. Anyways, we read a lot of scriptures and studied PMG. I thought it was a really good class but I didn't think too much of it. The other night when getting the goals for the next week from the sister missionaries in our district, one of the sisters said that the class I prepared changed her life as a missionary . . . wow. I had no idea, and I was so unsure of how to respond, so I just said I was glad and thank you. Anyways, it was super cool to me that by following the spirit, I was able to help this sister missionary be the best missionary she can. Anyways, it was super cool :)

The second experience is when we were talking to a couple in our ward. They talked about how they came to the knowledge of the gospel. They said they had a lot of problems, family, economic, etc., and these problems were taking their toll. The dad would drink and the mom was fed up. Then one day the dad was walking home and the missionaries stopped him. They asked if they could share a message so he said to come the next day. So they did! When the elders showed up, the mom told her husband two missionaries wanted to see him. He said, "Show them in." The mom was so shocked that her husband was going to talk with them. The next morning she was even more shocked when her husband got up early, showered, and got dressed. She asked him, "Where are you going." He said, "I'm going to church." She was dumbfounded. Two months later he was baptized and a few months after so was she. :) Now they are sealed in the temple and are super active, super great members. It was just a testimony to me that people change and need the gospel :D

We've been following the spirit a lot this week and inviting him more and more into our lessons. We had FANTASTIC lessons with F.,  A. and A.,  G. and her family, C. and her family; and more. It's been really cool to see. We don't really have any baptismal dates and no one went to church yesterday and lots of people are leaving for vacation. Ugh, it's kinda annoying... But, we have a lot of people to visit and we are looking for more so we are SOO excited :)

That's it for this week! Take care ya'll!!!

Elder Bushman
This is how we do missionary work in SANTIAGO CHILE!!!

Elder Lee's last day - he's going to train!
"No power on earth or in hell can stop this work or thwart the purposes of the Lord to have His soul-satisfying gospel message go to His children. It may take disasters in many forms to bring it about. But the purposes of God will be achieved. His children will hear the gospel of salvation in His own due time." - Ezra Taft Benson

Monday, January 20, 2014

Week 41: This has been a FANTASTIC Week

Dear Family and Friends,

First off, CONGRATS to my good buddy, Trustin Chun, on his mission call! He's going to the Mexico Veracruz Mission! I'm soo excited for him and especially excited to talk to him in spanish a little bit when we both get back. Haha, anyways, this has been a FANTASTIC week. We saw a lot of miracles, we worked hard, and we were especially rewarded. Basically, in terms of numbers, I had the best week I have ever had in my whole mission. :D Here's a cool story!

We went by an old less active member's home and when we got there, a kid named C. came out and  said he wasn't home. He then asked if we would teach him English. We said if it was okay with his parents. So, we went back the next day, taught him English, and shared a little bit about what we do. He said he wanted to go to church and that he would bring his cousin. His parents were completely fine with it and said they would have him all ready. On Sunday they both came to church and after sacrament meeting, I ran down from the piano and asked two boys from the ward if they would take C. and his cousin (L.) to their classes. They took them and at the end they loved it and want to come back. L. was assigned the prayer in primary next week so we taught them to pray yesterday and when it was time to end with a prayer, L. and C. were fighting over who would say it. We settled on rock, paper, scissors. They both said a prayer and did it amazingly, just talking from their hearts. :D This week we are going to try and incorporate their families in our little mini lessons :) They are special little boys!

So here are some answers to the questions I was given this week: I would say my high point of the week was on Saturday. We were so blessed and guided that day to have six lessons (two lessons with a member present, two other lessons, and two lessons with less active members). We completed all the goals we had for that day! :) It rained that day and Elder Kern and I got soaked, but we were so very happy and content with how the day went!!! We are teaching a family that consists of three boys (all investigators), the mom (investigator) and the dad (less active). It's been really interesting. The mom is super prepared (C.) and the dad is really receptive. The boys are all really nice and fun. We are also teaching a mom (A.) and her daughter (A.). We found the daughter in that big group of kids in the street about a month ago! They are awesome and really receptive! One guy we taught was kinda drunk but he was teaching us A LOT about the love of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. If you guys met him you would have thought he was a drunk hippie but he really did open my eyes to the meaning of love and what we do when we love. :D Super awesome! I am not wearing sunscreen. It is SUPER expensive here and I don't burn if I wear my proselyting clothes...only if I wear a t-shirt will I burn...so I don't! :D I definitely prefer Chilean winters...ugh, cannot wait for winter! Elder Frost is not in my zone, he is in a zone at the top of our mission. I'm two zones down from him! 
This week I studied about the love of God and Christ's atonement. It has really opened my eyes what it means to "Follow Christ" and "lay down your life for Him." :D My favorite story is when Christ called his apostles and they had to "drop their nets and follow Him." In Spanish it says, "al instante"...which means they instantly dropped their nets and followed Him :) There is a good mix of friendly people and mean people. Some people we try to stop will just keep walking and say, "Nope, I don't have time." Others are very nice and will talk to us, even if at the end they say, "I'm not very interested." The church services here are quite similar I would say. One difference is that the people giving a talk sit in the audience and when it is their turn to speak, they walk up the aisle, give their talk, and then return to the audience. Also, everybody sings WAY faster than what the director is leading and what the pianist  is playing. That's really annoying. We usually have about 130-140 people at Church and we have enough young men so we don't have to pass the sacrament. Everybody socializes before the meeting just like they do in the states. One miracle I saw this week was on Saturday, when some of our lessons fell through, God put people in our path so we could still keep all our goals. We went to people we didn't plan for and we still got all the lessons we planned for!!! :) My Spanish study is going well. I'm learning lots of new words and it has been quite rewarding. I just hope that I'll be solid for the rest of my mission. 

Today we went back to the U.S.A. :D ...Well, as close as you can get, I suppose. We went to Jonny Rockets: The Original Burger. We walked in and it looked like a 40's dinner, complete with white tile, flourescent lights, and red booths. They were playing the Beatles; Elvis Presley; Earth, Wind, and Fire; etc., and everybody was dressed in dinner attire. I ordered a Coke, double cheeseburger, onion rings, and a peanut butter chocolate shake. IT WAS DIVINE! :) I sent photos! It was just like America! The only thing is that hey didn't have rootbeer from the fountain, otherwise I would've gotten that in a HEARTBEAT! I legit felt like I was back home, haha! In a good way, not a trunky way!It was really expensive in comparison to what it would cost in the states but it was normal for Chile. Food is really expensive here!!! BUT, it was soooooo worth it! It was at a mall up in Elder Frost's zone called Las Condes. We're talking like $28.00 in U.S. money for the meal...BUT, before you flip out, all the food is twice the price or more than it is in the states. A dollar burger at McDonalds is like $2.50 here.

Anyways, that's it for this week ya'll! Keep working hard, say your prayers with faith, STUDY the scriptures daily, go to church because you want to magnify your calling! :)


Elder Bushman


Elder Kern and Elder Lee enjoying an AMERICAN lunch :)

Elder Bushman and Elder Cottrell

My onion rings and BURGER!
"Your Heavenly Father has known you for a very long time. You, as His son or daughter, were chosen by Him to come to earth at this precise time, to be a leader in His great work on earth." ~ Russell M. Nelson, October 2013 General Conference

Monday, January 13, 2014

Week 40: We Asked the Boys to be Baptized and they Said YES

Dear Family and Friends,

Wow, what a week. This week has been fast and we had a lot of good things happen. We found a lot of good people, worked with a lot of current investigators, and completed a lot of our goals. Anyways, J. didn't get baptized....again. I'm at a loss with her and the only thing we are going to do is have regular appointments and center them around Christ and hope that she will finally come to us and say that she is ready. Anyways, what can you do?

But, the missionary work went good this week! We found some new people, we have lots of appointments and plans for this week so we are really excited about that!!! I did hear about Guillermo! I didn't know it was Spanish speaking, that's awesome!!!! :D I'm really really excited for him! Haha!!! Well today was a bit of a bummer because I spilled stuff on one of my favorite ties three different times! UGH! it was soooooooo lame!!! Anyways! :) So we asked the boys to be baptized and they said yes. We haven't set a date but we are working on it. We are going to have a lesson with B.C. tomorrow and then a FHE with the C. family this week or the next!! :D Yes, I am rotating my shoes. My old ones are getting really beat up. I'm trying to make them last until my year mark at least :D I'm used to all the walking so I don't get sore hardly ever! We probably walk 2-4 miles every day depending on if we have lessons or not. So our sector is probably a mile wide and a mile and a half long! But the length is pretty much just a big hill.

So I'm kinda at a loss about what else to say. The sister missionaries in our district just had a baptism and the other sister missionaries will be having two this coming Sunday. Elder Kern and I are the only companionship that hasn't had a baptism this change yet. Hopefully we'll be able to catch up to everybody. 

Anyways, more next week I suppose! I love you all :) take care!

Elder Bushman
Elder Asay, Elder Lee, Elder Cottrell, Elder Kern, and Elder Bushman at a PIZZA BUFFET


This is a dog with a haircut like a LION!
"We as a people have one supreme thing to do, and that is to call upon the world to repent of sin, to come to God. And it is our duty above all others to go forth and proclaim the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, the restoration again to the earth of the plan of life and salvation. We have in very deed the pearl of great price. We have that which is of more value than all the wealth and the scientific information which the world possesses. We have the plan of life and salvation. The best way in the world to show our love for our neighbor is to go forth and proclaim the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, of which he has given us an absolute knowledge concerning its divinity." - Heber J. Grant

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Week 39: It was like Nothing I've ever Seen

Dear Family and Friends,

I hope everybody had a WONDERFUL New Years Eve and that you are all enjoying the first part of 2014!!!!! Whoohooo!!!! So I've heard a little bit about all of your guy's festivities for the new year but let me tell a little bit of ours. From my perspective, New Years Eve down here in Chile seemed like a bigger deal than Christmas....WOW huh. Seriously though, people completely bought out the stores, bought out the liquor stores, bought TONS of fireworks, and had so many pool parties, so many barbeques, so much music, and played so much soccer. Anyways, it was like nothing I've ever seen BUT, those were the worldly festivities so here's what we did: basically the whole day we were working and we were able to get a few lessons so that was awesome. Our district class was also on the 31st so we had some fun and everything. We were able to contact a lot of future investigators and so we are really, really excited about that; lots of prepared families, couples, and individuals. At night everyone was just partying so there was no work so we went home at about 9:15 instead of about 9:45 like normal. We got some good planning in and had some fun with Elder Lee and Elder Cottrell. We watched all of the fireworks outside of our window and took some New Years photos ... :) All in all, a pretty sweet celebration :D

So we didn't have the baptism for J. because she had to work in the morning on Sunday but everything is set for this Sunday; all the plans are ready, she is excited, we are stoked, and we are working with the V. family and the bishop this week to help her prepare. :) So the family with the three sons, the A. family is pretty good. The mom said she doesn't know if the dad is going to keep listening but ALL of the boys run up to us in the street and talk and stuff so it's really cool. We have a lesson with them on Tuesday and we are going to try and bring some members and invite the three boys to be baptized :) It should be REALLY cool =D We usually try and get about 15-18 lessons a week. Last week we got 16 lessons but lots of the appointments we had set up fell through so we think we can get up to 20 this week :) As for the things I wish I had known before I came on my mission: I wish I had known more about the most effective ways to do missionary work in our mission, how the people talked, and their customs. I wish I had taken with me Spanish scriptures marked up BEFORE the mission :) OH, and a freaking HUGE fan!! :D In my Valentine's Day package I would love a few things (1. a dog buzzer, ya know, like that little hand held thing that sends out a high pitched frequency that only dogs can hear. Yeah, I need one of those. Elder Kern and I were walking and almost got bit bad by a dog...luckily we had Elder Cottrells buzzer that he loaned us; otherwise, we would have been toast! 2. *Mini SD cards with music on them ... our phone can take them and if you put music on the cards, I could just use the phone as a player and use the speakers I have! Well there isn't a ton of sightseeing here but yeah, we are going to try and go to a few places :) One of my favorite scriptures to share with people is Moroni 7:12-13... I like using this when talking about the spirit and staying on the strait and narrow path. I still am way nervous to just talk to people and start up conversations. 

So one of the coolest things that happened this week was yesterday. We were heading to an appointment with this one woman and her daughter (we found her daughter when we had that lesson with that huge group of kids) and we were bringing David. Anyways, we get there....NOBODY. UGH, that is the worst, but we tried visiting some other people with no real success. Anyways, I suddenly got a thought to visit a guy named H. who promised to come to church but when we went to get him, he wasn't there when we went by. Anyways, we went by and found out he went to church by himself but we didn't see him. I think he accidentally went to the other ward and just for sacrament meeting. He said he really liked it and he would definitely go again BUT, that wasn't the cool part. We started to talk about the nature of God and the mission of Jesus Christ and the atonement and our eternal potential and then he started telling us a lot of his problems, mainly about the guilt he has had from past mistakes and the lack of direction he has in his life. We told him that his sins could be washed away through Christ and baptism and that the Gospel of Jesus Christ can fill the holes we have in our life. He accepted to be baptized and so when we go back and talk about the Restoration, we are going to set a date. After the lesson, I got a call from the woman with whom we had the first appointment. She said we could come back on Wednesday and that she was excited for us to come. It showed me that the hand of the Lord was in that appointment falling through and in the Spirit guiding us to H's house so we could help one of His sons. :) I really thought that was neat.

Well, that's about it for this week! I will send recordings, and photos next week because right now the USB isn't working on this computer. Anyways, take care, LOVE YOU ALL!!!

Elder Bushman

"It is not necessary for you to be called to go into the mission field in order to proclaim the truth. Begin on the man who lives next door by inspiring confidence in him, by inspiring love in him for you because of your righteousness, and your missionary work has already begun." - George Albert Smith