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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Week #26: Shucking Corn, Christmas and 25%

Elder Rivas and Elder Wilcox
     Wow,  where has the time gone?!  I am reaching some what of a milestone in the mission soon because in three days 1/4 of my time serving a mission in Guatemala will be over.  Four those math challenged individuals that means that I will have been here for six months, and will have 18 months to go.  I am not quite sure how I feel about this.  As I look back through all of the photos, I have taken, all the people I have met, all the experiences I have had, in my time here, I honestly cannot understand how so much has happened in such a short amount of time.  At this point in the mission it is just a little weird to think about home, but so hard not to at a time like this. Its Christmas after all with all those memories of many years... how can we not? But I also think long and hard about my time here, how I can be a more consecrated missionary, how I can better serve all of those around me, how I can help, build up, teach and inspire at every moment, and make all I come in contact with hopefully better than before.
     This week has been all about getting to know the area, we have had a lot of meetings this week and were only in the area for a small fraction of the week, but we did what we could. On Tuesday, we had our yearly devotional with President Ruiz and discussed the goals and the logros of the year past and the year to come. I found out a lot about my area in that little meeting. I knew that my knew area was a hard area and an area of faith but when they showed the stats for the year in Rio Blanca it made me realize just how hard and just how much faith I am going to need to have in these next few months here. But I not discouraged, I see it as a motivation more than anything else.

    The members here are amazing and I know we can start to find a lot of new people if we just work through all of these pilas families that we have here. (there is more than 3x the amount of people in this rama than my last).
     Service up here is little bit different than it is down on the coast. On Wednesday I had my very first experience shucking corn in a barn. It's pretty cold up here and after shucking for a few hours in the cold my hands became pretty numb but that only helped me shuck faster.....I like the word shuck.

    There is one thing that happened this week that was different and new for me.  I don't know if any of you know what Cal is but its one of my least favorite things in the world now.  Apparently there is a rock here called Cal that when put into hot water it has a chemical reaction becomes acidic and putty like and creepy.  Apparently they use it for just about everything here from tamales to cleaner to cement.  One day we went to do a little service for one of the members and when we got to the house she asked if we could help her paint the ceiling of her house. I had no problem with that. I can easily touch the ceiling with my head there, so painting it really wasn't to much of a problem.  Then she gave us the "paint"(cal). I didn't know what it was at the time I just thought it was some home-maid "chapin" paint.  Little did I know I was painting with acid....and after the two hours was done and over it had turned my hand disgustingly dry nastily and cracked. Even today it still looks like my right had is that of a 50 year old man. Needless to say I now know what cal is and will never touch that stuff again in my life... lol I almost lost a hand and an eye.  [Editor's Note:  We also don't know what Cal is, if someone knows we would love to know... :-) ]
     We had a little Christmas celebration this week with the District Rio Blanco.  Familias were paired into groups and given specific scripture stories to act out. We missionaries were paired with our landlady and her family and were given the good Samaritan to act out. Long story short we rocked that performance but didn't sadly did not get any video.  We had fake blood mask donkeys(well me dressed up as one) and so much more we brought the house down, and it was fun creative way to teach and remember our Savior.
     I don't know if I told you this but I am living in the same house as Elder Owen who was in the same CCM group as me. One day after a meeting we were in the main plaza of San Pedro waiting for the bus after getting some "sheka pan" to eat (best bread in the world I'm going to put on some weight here from it). Elder Owen is about as canche as possible with his pure white skin and blonde hair. He and I paired together simply draws attention. As we were sitting there in the park people kept coming up to us simply because we are gringos and they haven't ever meet any before. By the time the bus had arrived at the station we  had seven lessons together with random people contacting US. I wish it could be like that everyday. So much easier that walking hours on end in order to get to simply one lesson.
     Well this area is huge, amazing, beautiful and supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. I don't know everything that The Lord has planned for me here, but I am going to work hard and enjoy every minute of it.

Merry Christmas everyone!

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