So yeah, this week has been just about as EPIC as possible! We've had quite a few cool experiences for sure! Week started out with an awesome Tuesday. We had a lesson with two new people, María Borbón and Iris, her daughter, whose like 40. Super cool family! María is fairly old, so Iris helps take care of her and stuff. María's dad whose 94 lives just down the street. And we gave them a restoration pamphlet just for kicks. Went back a few days ago and Iris said (in Spanish of course), "my son saw that! Said some missionaries gave him one a while ago and he loves what it talks about but never got to see the missionaries again!" Church. Is. True!
Had a lesson with Marco as well, our literal golden investigator. We got there and asked him if he had read the gospel of Jesus Christ pamphlet, which talks about the five things we need to do to receive eternal life: have faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement, repent, be baptized, receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end. Most people who say yes, well, yeah they might have read the first sentence of the first page but not more than that. But Marco said yes, so we were like, "ok, I have never heard of baptism. Tell me what it is, why I need it, and what it does." And he was spot on the money! Gave one of the purest, best descriptions ever! This guy is seriously awesome. And to see the difference in his heart, how happy he is, is night and day. Just a single experience like that is worth two years out here. Knowing that for him now, he's happy. Or at least knows how to be happy :) whereas before, he just didn't. I am convinced that the only way to be truly happy in life is to follow the Lord's commandments. They were made, literally, so we could be happy!
"Adam fell that men might be, and men are that they might have joy."
And it's so true! But when we sin, we are not happy. It's impossible to sin and be truly happy and receive the joy that our Father has in store for us!
So after that awesome Monday, week went fairly normal as Camden goes. Did some service, talked to lots of people, made lots of new friends...ya know :) oh yeah! And like the subject heading says, I haven't yet gone a day without hearing a siren. Haha we had this guy today tell us, "man, I just don' knaw how yous guys does it! You walks around places that I lived in before, n' I was scared to walk around out there. And you guys just walk out like it's nuthin'!" It made us laugh fairly hard, but it is true. We walk around some crazy places out here! But honestly, I feel safe. Like maybe it's the fact that all the gangs love us, or the fact that we wear white shirts and ties and we're not cops, idk...but it's a cool feeling being out here. These people are so epic and prepared and stuff, it makes me super happy when we find someone who's not only willing to hear about the gospel of Jesus Christ, but is willing to do something about it! It makes us pretty sad otherwise. But everyone has their agency. One of my favorite scriptures is 2 Nephi 2:27:
"Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself."
Everyone gets the chance to choose. Good or bad, what ever we want, it's really up to us. Just remember you've always got yourself a lifeline...there's always someone there who is willing, waiting, and wanting to give you a hand. 24/7, no matter where you are. You just have to open the door :)
It gets crazy in Camden, but I'm sure it's still crazy back home and every where else too, so I'll keep this short, but I just want to let you all know that I love you. And that when times get tough, as they to often do, just remember that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love you more than we can even comprehend. And next time you walk past a flower, or a mountain, or a butterfly or something like that, remember that he made it literally for you. To close with a quote, "while in the pursuit of happiness, remember to stop and be happy" -the wooden sign hanging about the wooden bench in the wooded gardens behind the BYU-I Hinkley building
Love you guys! :D smile lots! :D
-Elder Brockston King