Monday, March 6, 2017

week 79

Hey! Things here this week were kind of slow. We did a lot of contacting, and then my companion got sick, and then he got me sick, so we did our best to work for as long as we could. I feel better but my companion seems to be struggling. Don't worry though, it is just the crummy cold kind of stuff, its nothing too bad. But it has been a little frustrating because of the lack of progress here. We did a fast this last week so I think that things should start looking up. We are going to visit some of the members and read some scriptures about sharing the gospel, then ask them to pray about three people who they could talk to, then we will go with them to visit them.

Mario's family seems like they are doing a lot better, we have another noche de hogar (home evening) with them this Tuesday. 

The best lesson this week was with Hermano Ronald because we were able to firm up his fecha (baptism date). But he hasn't been able to make it out to church which is a bummer. When we visit him this week we will probably have to go over the importance of church attendance again. We also started English classes this week, this picture is of our students:

The Hermanas are doing good and are really nice and work hard so I think they might actually be less of a problem than the Elders haha. 

So last week I said bye to Elder Bos, it was the worst, I broke pretty hard and cried haha, but he emailed me today and he looks happy so that is good. 

So now I will answer your questions. Dad asked what our average Sacrament meeting attendance is - between 70 to 90, so that is pretty good for a rama (branch). Mom asked how I was eating. The best thing was probably a tortilla de harina (flour tortilla), there is a lady that makes some dope ones, when we come visit we will get some. The worst was this q´em ha´ that still had dough chunks so it was nasty. I have some more pictures for you from my area.

We played some soccer for p-day and bought our groceries and now we will just be in our area the rest of the day. Tonight we will work on our lesson for the Zone Conference that is tomorrow. The Mission President, his wife and Assistants will come to us. Me and my companion get to talk for forty minutes about "locking our hearts." So uh, we will see how that goes. I think we are supposed to focus mostly on locking our hearts to girls, or guys for the Hermanas. They sent us a talk about it that deals mostly with flirting and that sort of thing. I think we are going to talk about it a little bit, and then maybe relate it more to obedience and being overall more focused in the work. Because pretty much all there is to say about that is "don't flirt in the mission because it is dumb." We will have interviews tomorrow too, so that is always fun. We meet with Sister and President Faundez separately. She asks about the family and how things are going with our companions, makes sure we are eating okay, and keeps us in line about our clothes, ties, shoes and hair. President's interviews are really short unless you have something specific to talk to him about. 

Well, I think you might be getting tired of hearing about this spiritual thought, but I never get tired of talking about the Atonement so I will go again. This last week we had zone meeting and the Hermanas did an example of the Atonement where one person is doing push ups, and for every certain number of push ups they do the other people get a chocolate. They asked me to do the push ups. At first I thought that I would just pick a number that I wouldn't feel too embarrassed about, but then while I was doing it and reached the number I looked around and saw that not everybody had the same amount. So I felt like I should keep going, and then I got to the point where I couldn't do any more so my arms gave out. But I saw that it was still uneven, and I just felt like I should try again so I did a few more, and then gave out. And that happened a few more times before I was maxed out. And I just imagined how Christ felt, because push ups are absolutely nothing compared to what He did. I'm sure that He wanted to quit as soon as He started, but He knew He had to pay for EVERYONE'S sins, He couldn't just suffer for some of us, He had to suffer for all of us. I am really grateful that He didn't give up and kept going. I love my Savior and it was just a really powerful experience in a tiny minuscule way to see a little bit of how He felt for us. 

Have a good week! I love you!

Love, Elder Toolson


  1. Wow! This entire post is so inspiring. I love his attitude!

  2. Dear Joe,
    It is close to midnight here (which is extremely late for me) and I have just read this week's update of your journey.
    I do enjoy reading of your experiences. How you continue forward even when there are challenges. Most of all I love your inspirational message each week. It's been a very long time since I have seen you, but your mom and I have remained good friends and have kept in touch... you have grown so much, Joe... I've always known you to have a great heart and that you are very intuned towards others. I find, from reading your updates, that yiur natural gift of loving, caring for those around you is now developed and more focused. I was not falling to sleep easily tonight, brain wouldn't turn off and I was challenged in letting God take the nightshift! Then I read this and I feel myself letting go... letting God ... your writings cause me to ponder, to pray more diligently. Andvthat gives me peace.
    Thank you. The Grace of God is with you.

  3. I am in countdown mode till he comes home!!!