Monday, August 18, 2014

Don't You Worry Child; See, Heaven's Got A Plan For You‏



CCM District before we left.
Hey all,

First off, Happy Birthday Alex! I'm really sorry I couldn't make it. You're growing up! You can drive already! And congrats on making the Volleyball team! At least I'll be there for your graduation.

I heard about your play, Bree! That sounds awesome! You have a talent for singing and acting.

Mom, thanks for the updates. Sounds like things are getting pretty heavy out there.

Dad, thanks for the weekly advice. It really helps.

This week was actually pretty rough. We've probably lost J___. On Saturday, he stopped meeting with us. And then on Sunday he didn't come to church. His wife has yelled at us for coming in days past, even though he's welcomed us into his home. Maybe she got to him somehow. I dunno.

The sad truth is not many people have wanted to listen to our message thus far. Satan truly does have a far-reaching influence to be able to put fear and doubt into the heart of so many people.

Actually, what keeps coming to mind is the parable of the sower that Jesus taught. Right now we are sowing tons of seeds, but few people are receiving them. I try not to get too discouraged. Maybe I'm just Johnny Appleseed right now, planting seeds that will later grow up for other missionaries to harvest.

Honestly, I don't want to be the planter. I want to be the teacher. But, it's up to the people we teach on whether or not they'll accept our message.

So, we walk. We search. We teach. Until we find somebody.

I don't got much more time. I love you all. I love you Mom, Dad, Alex, Bree, and Bodhi.

-Zach


Mexico City CCM at night. This is me with Stephen Bahr from our home stake!! He'd only been here at the CCM for about 5 days. It's a little blurry, but at least we got to cross paths before I headed to Nicaragua.

QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
1) Does it feel like camping 24/7? Or a little more civilized than that?

  • A little of both, honestly. I've got a bed, electricity, and running water (only at night but better than nothing). I dunno. It's different than pretty much everything I've ever done.

2) How are the Nike pants doing for you? And how are your shoes treating you?

  • Love the Nike pants. It's too bad I burned a hole through a pair at the CCM. The shoes are fine, too. I hope they hold up to all this wear and tear I'm putting them through.

3) Was the package waiting for you at the mission home? The one with the mucinex and other stuff? If not, then you'll get it at the next transfers I guess! I hope you can last that long! We will send out another one after school starts here (Aug 18). Is there anything you want/need? What about your companion?

  • I don't think the package has arrived yet. Anderson says it takes an average of 2 months for a package to get from America to Nicaragua. If it is here, they haven't notified me yet. As for stuff, I'm doing pretty good here. They have these little shops called pulperías all over the area I'm in. Everything's pretty cheap here, and some have more things to buy than others.

4)  Is there a church building near you or will you be assigned to a branch?

  • There's a church building literally the next street over from where we live. We go there for church and other meetings with our District and Zone. Actually, it's the Stake Center for our entire area. If there's a big meeting going on near us, it usually happens there. We're in a ward with one other companionship.

5)  I'm glad you have someone to prepare a meal for you. Is that typical for the mission? Do you pay her? How is that set up? Other than rice (oh yum) is the food good? Does she prepare breakfast or dinner or is that on your own? What do you eat?

  • Apparently it's typical to have a member family serve at least one meal to a companionship daily. We each pay $100 cordóbas (not US dollars) to the family every 15 days. The food's really good, and I don't mind rice with everything. She's made chicken, beef, pork, and fish at different times. With every meal (besides rice) is fried banana slices, which are actually pretty good. She preapres only lunches. Breakfasts and dinners we work out on our own.

6) How much will you be spending each week on average?

  • I've spent an average of 100-200 cordóbas each week. It varies according to the need. [Mom note: 100 cordobas = US $4. That means he's only spending $4 to $8 each week! Plus the cost of lunch every 15 days.]


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