Tuesday, September 24, 2013

CUSCO 9.23.13

I am going to write you all more tomorrow.... I was having P-day but now I have to go and help a companionship in another zone.... kind of an emergency so I have to get going here pretty soon. What I do want to do is give you some pics of my trip to the real JUNGLE. It was amazing and I had so many great experiences that I will tell tomorrow... for now just a spiritual thought. 

 Read a talk from Elder Holland from the Ensign of last month about the difference between justice and mercy, freedomand captivity.... it made me reflect so much about my time as a missionary, and howthe greatest blessing has been my understanding of the importance of the commandments. My whole concept has changed of my relation of my Heavenly Father and of what he expects of me... every day things are getting better because I am trying to give myself more and more to him. 

President has talked to me a few timesabout how when I go home, if I haven´t changed, I have missed  the whole point.... I have realized that as I try to change, I am learning more, understanding people better.... the whole gospel of Jesus Christ has taken on a new meaning in my heart that I never ever want to lose. 

And that means that these changes have to be permanent. And I know that it might be a little hard to always do, but its my new goal forevor and always!!! 

I love you more tomorrow,

Elder Neff

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

CUSCO 9.16.13

Well hello my family!!!!!! How are all of you!? I got a letter from quite a few of you so I assume that everything is going really really great! I am doing great as well :) 

Ok, so as you can see I sent you a boatload of photos! We went to Quillabamba this week and were able to have a training mtg with the missionaries and do a work visit with the zone leaders. I was able to have a great visit with my old companion from the CCM, Elder NOLAN!  I was more than excited to have that oportunity.  

The trip to Quillabamba in itself was quite the adventure, going up to over 4000 meters and then dropping down quickly into a valley at 1000 where it is basically the " seja de selva" o sea, eyebrow of the jungle was quite chevere. 

The work visit with Elder Nolan was so great. It was such a cool moment to remember how we had taught together in the CCM knowing hardly a lick of spanish and then having this oportunity about a year later to see how far we had come. He is a wonderful missionary and am so glad that he is trying so hard to help the missionaries in Quillabamba. 

Mom I read the newsflash about elder Cook in Perú and I couldn´t help but think about what his reaction would have been to visit Quillabamba. It is a small district with three branches and a family group.... i feel like the area could just explode with a little more leadership and a good focus on reactivation as well as teaching non members. A city where 600 people are more or less "active" and there are over 3000 people registered as baptized on the records of the church. I believe it is time to rescue! And while we were there we talked a good while about all of that. I hope the missionaries can embrace the new focus of the work of salvation and be able to find even purpose in this new type of focus. 

As for me and my companion we are doing sooo great! Elder Castro is from Lima and he is the kindest person. I can´t believe how much he has served me in just the few short weeks we have been companions. I hope to learn so much from him and I am assuming that we could be companions for a good little while. I expect to enjoy every minute of it! 

I love you all soooooooooo much. I feel blessed more and more everyday for my service. I am getting off now trying to be more obedient with the time rules.  But I cannot believe how much has been able to change in such a short time of my life. 


Elder Neff

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

CUSCO 9.10.13

Great week. here are some of the great things that happened. 

We taught the first lesson to a member family and their two nieces who are not members. (references;)  It has been a great experience teaching member references. Can you imagine the difference between someone who is surprised with missionaries on their door step and with someone who has been carefully prepared by members to recieve the gospel! It is a very big difference. 

We explained the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them, and I think few times in my mission a lesson has gone to smoothly. It was great to take a moment just to think and realize that the Lord has given me such a blessing to learn and understand the language, and I feel so good being able to express myself easily to explain the gospel. 

The two investigators had already seen the video of the restoration of the gospel, but I felt the need to go over again the first vision, and tell the experience of joseph smith looking for the true church. 

As I was finishing telling the acccount of the first vision, I felt the strong impression to look into one of the investigators eyes until I finished speaking. I was on the part of "one of them spake unto me calling me by name..... ) so I felt like I still had a ways to go before I finished the lesson. BUT I KEPT EYE CONTACT, I listened to the spirit and it was the right thing to do (its always the right thing to do) she looked intently into my eyes too and i know she felt the spirit.... she seemed to be affected after I told the acount and the rest of the lesson was much more receptive to what we taught. 

Well.... tomorrow we are traveling. It is and exciting but difficult part of being an assistant. Pray for my investigators while I am gone from cusco because I get back on Saturday and they need to read the Book of Mormon! 

I love you all so much, and will talk to you soon! 

Elder Neff

Pics of the trip to pisac.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

CUSCO 9.2.13

CRAZY!!!! week! but so rewarding. The visit that we had from Elder Grow was something else and I am so happy that we recieved such a great blessing.

He talked about many important things, among them how we need to change our focus from just missionary work to, the work of salvation. It was explained to us many times how important it will be for us to take care of less actives and recent converts.

The whole week was spent with many mtgs and for me SO MANY different things to learn... honestly a little stressed and I am going to enjoy this p-day tooooooooo much! haha, but I love you all, Im sorry the letter will be better next week.

Closing thought, Elder Grow said something very special, he said that this moment in the history of the church is a moment tan significante (sorry I can never think in english) as the first vision, or as the restoration of the church, the priesthood etc. and that everyone will look at this moment and say " that is when everything changed!"

Can you believe this? What a blessing we have to be at the forefront of this great change.

I love you all! Que el señor les bendiga

Elder Neff