Thursday, April 24, 2014

March 31, 2014

I just got your second letter today and thank you so much for that.  I am so excited for General Conference.  I can't wait and I'll do what you said with the questions and the prayer.  I love listening to them speak.  Sorry to hear about the kittens and jury duty.  Life's rough.  The area is good.  It's pretty ghetto.  Being in a Branch is interesting.  We have so many people to see , there's just not enough time and it's already split into two areas.  But, no one comes to church .  Hard sometimes because in the ghetto there is so much evil that we see and hear.  It's so hard to see and you know the message we share will bless their lives and make them truly happy, but nothing seems to change.  Also hard.  planting sees is nice, but when we're called to do the harvesting, it does get discouraging.  But, there are so many great people who are so prepared for the gospel, it's amazing to see.  Today has been really good.  I've really seen the blessings of fasting to help me have clean thoughts and stay in a good place to be a good missionary and a good person.  It has been really good lately and I owe it all to the Lord.  He has helped me out so much.  The past few weeks truly have been a refiner's fire for me and though it's still hard, I truly feel the Lord changing me.  I just want it to be for good.  I'm scared that I might easily fall back to my old ways.  It's scary for me.  

Yes, I got Wendy's package and I wrote her a letter.  I got the shirt stays, but they don't really work.  The clasps on them don't hold well at all, so I don't know what you want me to do.  I'm praying for Calvin, though.  I think about him and worry about him all the time.  I've seen the evil and pain that that path leads to.  I've talked to so many people like that and I really don't want him to go through the same things.  It kills me to see people go through that.  Let alone, my own brother!  Many tears and prayers for him.  I love him more than he'll ever know but I also know that he has agency.  He has to go through this to learn and yeah, it's hard and sad to watch, but I love him and that's all I can do right now. 

Apparently we are getting iPads in April.  Everyone gets their own and when you're done with your mission, you get to keep them.  I don't know how it's gonna work, but I'm guessing it's gonna be highly regulated and any misuse will get them taken away.  Also, I don't know how the people of Colorado will take it.  We drive nice cars (we got a brand new 2014 Corolla), we dress all fancy and now we have iPads?!?  Especially here in the ghetto parts of the mission where most everyone can barely afford food and we bring in this iPad.  I don't know.  I just think some people won't like that very much.  Makes us look like spoiled rich kids.  But on the plus side, it would be so nice ot have it during a lesson and pull out videos and what-not.  And I'm sure the first few months will be the worst of it.  Just like getting anything new, everyone is gonna freak out for the first little bit (me included!).  Then the excitement will eventually die down and maybe rise a little each time new missionaries come and get iPads.  Man, blessings of serving a mission.  Things are going good though and getting better.  Thanks again for all the support and love I've received in the past couple weeks.  I've really needed it and it has helped more than you'll know.

Love ya,
Elder Bowler #2

PS- Just a couple of things I want to ask about
1.  Do I have one of those missionary plaques?  Cuz I see them all the time and was told that you just have to ask the Bishop, but I'd like one and idk if I even get one.
2.  I'm out of extra contacts and missionary insurance doesn't cover it.  I can last for a while with the ones I have in and I still have those glasses but yeah.
3.  could you also send a bunch more pictures like you did in the last package.  I like to hang them on my wall.

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