Tuesday, December 28, 2010

"Where's Elder Harris"

Newest group of missionaries to enter the Lima Peru North mission with the Mission President and his wife (Elder  and Sister Blunck).

Monday, December 27, 2010

Wave of Love!

Hola from Peru.

OK!  So fun stuff to think about..First, this is my first Christmas without my family and that also means that I only have one left. Second, if you don’t all know I have been typing this from a Spanish keyboard crazy!!!! Third, I am sending a surprise home that you will all get to see. It should be neat.

Another cool thing that happened to me, I have eaten some really strange things.. For example Chicken feet, Guinea Pig, about 600 different types of potatoes and every fruit you can think of literally.  The best however is when I can walk about three steps in any direction and there is an ice cream man. Fun fact: there are people here that are vendors on the street. Every vendor on the street wants people to come and buy from them, so they all have different whistles and calls that identify what they are selling. For example the ice cream man has a crazy high pitch whistle and blasts it three long times, where as the knife sharpening man (no joke) uses a horn and honks it in a short and fast way. Literally all the vendors make different noises so the streets are really loud. lol I like it cause that’s how I know what stuff they are selling.

Ok so about Peru... about Canto Chico... well honestly I really love the people here. The more I spend time in the city, and the more time that I spend inside their houses, I find that I cannot help but feel love for these people.  The other day we entered a house of an investigator (this home was in the side of the mountain and we had to climb the face of the cliff to get to It.).  Very quickly after we had entered she told us in Spanish to sit and wait. So of course we did... after a few minutes she returned and brought us a mango and cut it up for us to eat. Now this women was one of those people that pretty much has nothing, some people live in houses with real dirt floors and barely a roof over their heads. I am telling you as I sat there and watched three cockroaches run past her legs (no exaggeration), I never felt so much love. This poor humble woman giving me all that she had to offer and her excitement to hear the words of the lord. Literally this is the first time that I have felt the Love of God almost physically transfer to another person, through the spirit. When we spoke to her I could feel the love of God like an overwhelming wave of water. One of the coolest feelings I have ever felt. Lots of times in letters I talk about experiences and my testimony, for all those that read this, know that with all my heart, I know that God loves you. God wants nothing but to have his children return to him worthy to receive eternal life¨... which gift is the greatest of all the gifts of God.´´ There are five principles that the world needs, faith in Christ, repentance, baptism, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. With these five things we can return and live with God. The Lord Knocks at the Door, are we prepared to let him in?
Con amor, Elder Harris

Monday, December 20, 2010

Canto Chico, Peru

Well I am finally here in the field. I know that at other times I’ve said that this was the hardest time of my life, but to be straight up honest with you all... this is the hardest time of my entire life. I am the only white fish in a sea of brown ones. Wow this language is really hard when you are hearing it a 100 miles an hour.
My companion or as they call it here 'Mi Papa' is Elder Xicara.  To pronounce his name, the first part, the 'xi', sounds  like 'she' and the second part sounds like it looks 'cara'. The place we have been first assigned to is called Canto Chico, and it is really great.  I like it here a lot. The people are really poor.  My area is the mountains.  It stinks because I have to climb a massive mountain every day. OH ya, that reminds me,  I figured out why people build houses right on top of each other ... it is because when you build a house in the side of the mountain, you don’t have to pay as much for things.   Most of the time the people that live there are all paying a lump sum for electricity and more often than not they don’t have a bath room.
Really cool thing!!! This week we went into a member’s house, and in the back they had a giant cage...... full of Guinea Pigs.   I was so upset that I didn’t have my camera with me but you don’t have to worry because the member is the Bishop!!!!!!! 
OK so now for the bad news... there is a mission rule here we are not allowed to send pictures at all to anyone. So I have not figured out what to do yet but I hope to think of something soon.
So another cool thing is that this week, this coming Saturday, as in Christmas day, I have two baptisms. As in, I get to be in the water, baptisms!!!  I am so excited.  We have been teaching these two completely different people, both accepted, and are excited to get baptized.  There is a possibility that we will have two more the following week.  The gospel is so true.  I have the privilege to see it change people’s lives first hand.   Trust me, I thank god every day.  
Amazing to me is the condition of some of the people that I have seen and met.  Many are barely living if you can even call it that.  Some just live in a shack with nothing but the clothing on their backs. It is really sad, but I think this is one of the reasons they are so accepting of the gospel, because what we are giving them is happiness and joy. I love my job even though right now it is really, really hard.  Soon however, when I am fully able to communicate the gospel... the World will have to look out cause the Big guns are coming in.
Con amor Elder Harris

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

´´please help Elder Harris to stop snoring.´´

I am so happy that you were able to email me. I feel bad that I haven't had a chance to write any one, but this will work out great. So I wanted to tell you of a cool spiritual experience I had. So the night before I went out to teach in a part of the city (keep in mind that this teaching experience is sort of like a work shop, a practice and we go with the entire CCM). I was feeling really, really tired and I prayed that I would have the opportunity to get a good night sleep. I then went to sleep, and I guess that in about 10 min I was out like a light. One of the other Elders that sleeps in my room was having a really hard time getting to sleep, and I was making it worse because I was snoring really really loudly. So, side note, I have been having really bad sleeps lately and I didn't know why. So anyway, because he wanted to sleep so badly, he said a prayer asking Heavenly Father to ´´please help Elder Harris to stop snoring.´´ He said that within 5 min, I stopped snoring and he was able to go to sleep. I woke up that morning with more energy then I have had for the past few weeks. Long story short, that lord is looking out for us and he really does answer our prayers. Even if sometimes in a sort of silly way. I love the Lord and I know that he loves me. He wants nothing for me but to help him bring more of his children to the truthfulness of this gospel. I love you grandma and will keep writing you as much as a can.
Elder Harris

He knows where we are and what we are doing!

Hola mi Familia,

So Wow, I have only 7 days left and I am no longer in the CCM... I am in the field!!!!

I know that there must be a ton of questions that everyone has and I am sorry that I don’t answer them in this blog. Just know that I still love you.
I have a super cool experience to share with everyone. This past week we got to go out with the entire CCM to a part of the city of Lima and practice proselyting. My companion and I had been crazy with excitement because this is the first time that we have had the opportunity to teach to real people. So we all got on a bus and start heading out there and the first thing we were told was to hide all of our valuables because we were going to be in a ´scary´ neighborhood as my mom likes to call them. I was a little dismayed about that but as I got off the bus my heart filled again with excitement because I could see the hundreds of shoe box houses right in front of me, stacks and stacks and stacks of them. Soon after getting our assignments we went to an area called Palao. My companion and I headed out in search of our first investigator, and we decided, of course, to start with a prayer. After we prayed I noticed that we were right in front of a house and so naturally I knocked, not less than a few seconds later my first investigator ever... slammed the door in my face!! I laughed so hard it was ridiculous. It was a great way to start the morning. So then we moved on and on, house after house, just trying to convince someone to let us in and give them a message. This is the point where I gained a great respect for missionary work. We went just about half way through the day and had about 30 contacts and taught about 5 lessons. We were instructed that all the missionaries needed to meet together at the nearby LDS church. After eating lunch there we would have the opportunity to go back out for another 3 hours. This is where the story begins...30 minutes before lunch we approached a house and this little old lady who spoke super slow Spanish, who was missing all but three of her teeth, started talking to us. We spent about 20 min arguing with her and I knew that we were getting nowhere. Oh by the way everyone here is catholic, just so you all know. Anyway, so we left her and I felt like I had lost the spirit. The end of street that we were on had only about three more houses. My companion and I seemed to be in a fit of spiritual darkness; we walked right by the first house without even knocking on the door. We were about the start to walk by the next one when out the corner of my eye I see a little cartoon angel stuck to the window of this house. Then quite suddenly just like someone was talking right into my ear I heard in English, ´Elder Harris go back to that house and knock on the door.´ I seriously thought one of the other English missionaries were spying on us, so I turned my head around and there was no one there. I immediately stopped walking... grabbed my companion by the back of his shirt, and said in broken Spanish because of my extreme excitement ´this house right here!!! We are going here! I knocked on the door and this wonderful, middle aged woman came out, long story short she accepted us, loved all that we had to say. She took a Book of Mormon, promised to start to read it and to pray, and also we committed her to coming to church on Sunday. I am so grateful that I was given such a powerful message, my faith increased about ten fold. I know that the lord knows us individually. He knows where we are and what we are doing. He is watching over us and guides us in all that we do if we just ask. God wants all his children to repent and come unto him, and partake of everlasting life. I love this gospel and I know with all my heart that this is the true church, that it has been restored and that Joseph Smith was a true prophet and he, with the help of the lord, translated the Book of Mormon. I know that as we have questions in this life all the answers reside in the Book of Mormon. I love you all and will do my best to continue to write for the blog.

con amor Elder Harris

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Obedience, Faith, Confidence, and Love.

Snail Mail arrived today, 4 December 2010
Dear Familia!!!
Peru is a crazy cool place. It is really, really hot. I can go to class and as I walk down the stairs and down the hall to my class I am already sweating like a monkey.
I love my companion. I will send pictures soon of the both of us. Cool fact. The MTC or CCM is right in the middle of the city on the ghetto side. It is so awesome here. They serve rice at every single meal (Jaren has never enjoyed rice at home..lol). By the time you get this (snail mail) you will already know I tasted my first guinea pig and boy was it tasty.
It is fun to think about all the cool stuff that is so different here, namely the birds. The birds are so colorful. There are so many different varieties and all of them have crazy songs. The coolest and I haven’t seen what makes the sound yet but it sounds just exactly like a star wars blaster shot. Lima isn’t exactly beach tropical where I am because the MTC/CCM is 2 hours away from the Pacific Ocean.
Well a few more things that are crazy cool. First is first. Spanish just like in English is full of words that are used in areas specifically.. I mean Jargon. That’s what they mean when they say Peru has pure Spanish. It’s because they don’t have area jargon words, but because of that Peruvians speak extremely fast! It is really hard to understand them. I love it! Soccer is huge here! The Peru CCM has Astroturf field. It is really fun to play on. I love playing with the natives because they kick my butt and that makes it hard to be competitive (Jaren is very competitive!!).
I have met a few more people going to my mission, one of whose name is Elder Frank. Elder Frank is 6”9 and is super smart. Ya, Huge, blows my mind and best of all his companion is 4”11. It’s funny to see them together.
So Fuze-ball is huge here and during physical activity time and after meals we play. Here it is called Taka-Taka which is pronounced with the A sound as a Ah sound. I am getting pretty good.
I was listening to talk by Elder Holland, I loved it because he relates missionary work to going to battle. He said, “Your mission is war,” Yes, I know, War. Every day we fight that same war that was fought in the pre-existence. We must give more than 100% because how much would Christ give? He also said that you should not spend any time resisting the words “Preach my Gospel”. He says that you cannot have it your way and he literally says “This is not Burger King, we don’t hold the pickles.” I love him.

He is so powerful. Obedience is the first law in Heaven. What was the battle in the pre-existence over? That’s right obedience. Everyone knew the gospel once and we chose to accept it that why we got to come here. We are just reminding the people of something they already know about. It’s all about the choice. There are three choices. Your way, and God makes sacrifices. The middle way, where you and God make sacrifices or God’s way, where you sacrifice all. Not too hard of a choice. Our battle is so much closer while we are in the field. Almost like we are the archers and then we are moved to the front line. ..Ending up right at the front doors of investigators. This gospel is so real, so alive, so powerful. We just need to believe that we have the power and have faith.
(Side note) It is pretty nice to look out my window and see a bunch of really green, really big mountains..AKA..The Andes, mind bomb. So much is different here. Building are different, signs, buses, cars, words. It is really like stepping into a different world. Movies just don’t do it justice. (Side note finished)
So it is really cool to trace my priesthood lineage. It goes to Joseph Smith, Mathew, mark, Luke, and John and then to Christ. Blows my mind how cool that is. The things that make you a powerful missionary are simple; Obedience, faith, confidence, and love. That is all it takes and I need to master them all.
Con Dios todos es possible..With God all is possible.
Love ya =Con Amor = With Love,
Elder Harris aka..your son and brother

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Formula for Life

Hello, Hello, Hello, Familia,

WOW, Peru is the greatest place known to man, besides the fact that it is so stinking hot here!
Well the gospel is true and I can’t say that enough.
Here is some information on my companion. His name is Elder Urizar , and he is from Guatemala, AKA super cool. He speaks a slower Spanish than the people of Peru but I still think that he speaks it really fast. OH ya... guess what?? He speaks no English at all !!!!!!!!!!! Sometimes it is really hard to have a conversation cause neither one of us knows what we are saying.. funny. So while you are here in Peru you get to have two companions. You have your Nativo and you Norte Americano. The North American companion is only with you in class because we do not take classes with our Nativo companions. I took pictures of both of them and I will send them to you. It won’t be hard to figure out who is who because one is white/tall and the other is dark and short. Oh and in that picture with the North Americans, my companion is Elder Church (the one in the blue shirt).
SO much has happened since I was last able to talk to you. First thing is first, I went to the temple today, and the whole thing was in Spanish. Super Hard!!!!!, but really, really spiritual. I loved it. I had a blast because I had to ride the bus there and... Let’s just say in Peru, people do not have a 3 foot bubble. It is more like 3 inches or less. I was crammed right in next to a really short lady that was with her son in the same really, really, small seat. Also I was standing and I had to duck the whole time because the bus is made for Nativos, ergo really short people. I have a kink in my neck. ;)

Another really awesome thing is that my teachers are great. They are really nice and both do not speak that much English. So the environment is a sink or swim kind of deal. Just in these last 5 days my Spanish has increased almost tenfold. When you are in an environment where if you aren’t speaking Spanish no one understands what you are saying... trust me you start to learn a lot faster. I don’t know why. (Jokes)
Also another really cool thing, I ATE GUINEA PIG!!!!!! It was so good. Ok, so it seems to me like when someone is describing an uncommon meat they always say that “it tastes like chicken”. This tastes nothing like chicken. It was the most tender roast/pure awesomeness I had ever had and the sauce that they served it with was like tasting creamy spices of the best Mexican/ South American food I have had the privilege to taste. Literally I loved it. I cannot wait until I get the opportunity to eat some more. Also Inca Kola is the new drink of the God´s, It sort of tastes like a carbonated bubble gum with a slight South American twist.

So let’s get down to the nitty, gritty, the gospel is so simple to teach in English and I am convinced that is why the Lord wants me to teach it in Spanish. It is so tough some times to say what you what to say, but you don’t have the words to say it. I have changed my personal study to something similar to the movie “The Other Side of Heaven”. I just place my Spanish scriptures next to my English ones and read it one sentence at a time. Trust me it really works. If you ever want to learn another language, this is how it’s done. Pray for help and start reading the scriptures. Now that I think about it this is also the formula for life, pray and read the scriptures. Funny how these things tend to come full circle. So if you have any questions for me the best thing to do at this time is to email me because mail is really, really slow. I have also sent you a letter with other thoughts in it but it won’t get to you for about a week or two sorry. Just know that I still love you. I love you all and miss you,
Con amor Elder Harris

Monday, November 29, 2010

"give 110%"

Letter to Harris Family before Jaren left for Peru 22 November 2010
Hola Familia!!

Sorry that it has taken me so long to write you a handwritten letter. There is so much to do and so little time to do it all in.
To answer some of your questions, My new companion is a nice guy but he has no heart for this great work. He is a person that believes that the mission rules do not apply to him because he wants to not be a “robot missionary.” We have had many discussions to no avail and found that we just end up being mad at each other. I know that I am not a perfect being, and have no room to judge him. I have a feeling the Lord will greatly humble him someday. He has been involved in less than appropriate things. However he has made the choice to be here and repent of his past. He just needs to realize that the next step is to give 110%.
Well Spanish is coming along nicely. I can now go an entire day without speaking English. Sure there are some things I cannot say but I do my best to look them up.
Side Note: We finally got snow here (Provo, Utah, Nov 21st)
I hope Aubrei is ok with her car accident. I thanked the Lord that she was ok.
We have had a lot of talks this week about “How we are prepared.” I find it interesting that all the prophets there have ever been were chosen before we were born, before they were born. It’s hard to imagine…I see it like we were all standing around Jesus and he was asking for volunteers. If we were pre-destined then does God prepare our lives? I would think, yes, how else would we be found worthy? I read the Book of Mormon daily and I have also read about halfway through “Jesus the Christ”. Jesus the Christ blows my mind!!!! I have learned more about the Master then I’ve ever learned in my short nineteen years of existence. Sometimes I think that the only way Talmage was able to write some of the things he wrote were because he directly interviewed Christ and asked him. It just amazes me how much detail that magnificent book has. I love reading it and I am upset that I chose not to read it before I left.
Well I am sure you are all dying to know..so…I have gained 8 pounds over my entire stay so far (6 weeks). It’s funny cause I have been trying to eat less and less. I play basketball every day, and we play really hard so that we can work off all this food. Think about it though. Wake up, eat, sit in class, eat, sit and study, eat, gym, class, sleep (Eat end of the day snacks too). There is a lot of sitting and eating. So I cannot believe that it is thanksgiving again almost. Just think only one more and before the next I will be home. I seriously feel like I just left you guys in the van, oh I mean truck, like yesterday. The last few weeks are going 100 mph. I barely have time to think let alone eat, sleep, study.
Well a strange thing has happened. I no longer pray in English, like the other day I tried and found I had more to say in Spanish than I could in English. Also another crazy thing I am really starting to understand how the spirit speaks to me. I don’t have still small voice, it’s more like impressions that I get and then I think, and do. It’s amazing! I feel so much more focused now. I feel like the old Jaren has moved out and Elder Harris is starting to move in. Best part of it all is Elder Harris has got his act together and is a lot less messy. I know that this may come as a shocker but the Lord is blessing me with organization. I know crazy right, but the Lord works in mysterious ways.
Something I find is really unfair is that there are some very good looking sister missionaries. I don’t know why I ever had it in my mind that there wouldn’t be…cause there is..But end of that train of thought.
Yo se que dios y Jesuchristo viven, y nos aman y tambien dios llamo profetas por toclos sus hijos. Dios nos dio las escrituras entonces poclemos tener guia y daz y tambien mas gozo. Es importante que monstremos nuestro gratidud por nuestro ben diciones.
En El nombre De Jesucristo Amen
Con Amor – Elder Harris

Thursday, November 25, 2010

I am finally here!!!!!!!!

Hey Familia
So... I am finally here!!!!!!!! This is the craziest place I have ever been. Let me just start with the flight from Salt Lake to Atlanta, I met this wonderful lady named Karen, we began to talk and I of course, being a missionary, began to bring in the gospel. Well... as time progressed I shared with her all of the first lesson and I committed her to reading the book of Mormon and praying to know if what is in the book is true, amazingly she accepted my offer. Then on the plane from Atlanta to Peru, I met a man from Peru whose name was Raul Feilpa and an almost similar situation happened. We began to talk and got around to the gospel and I committed him to read and pray about the book of Mormon. It was one of the coolest experiences that I’ve ever had. So I got of the air plane and took a few pictures ( for mom).
First things first, I have never sweated this much in my life. I thought that I was a really bad sweater, it is like 10 times worse here. I have crazy bad sweats here. It is so HOTTTT!!!!!!!! Also we took this crazy bus to the CCM and I thought that I was going to die about 10 times and this is no joke. The bus driver was the most insane driver ever. We were so close to all these cars next to us and even sometimes super close to the walls of buildings. One of the cool things that I saw on the way here was a super huge McDonalds and the best part was the advertisement on the side. Where there is usually some Pepsi product, there was a huge INCA COLA sign. I laughed so hard.
WOW the CCM is really nice because it is so small, I just got finished with my first meal here and let me tell you... AWESOME. We had the craziest rice and potatoes and pork that I have ever had. The potatoes here are really good. Then they served homemade fried donuts. I just about fell out of my seat because it was soooooo good. So about my companion we all have native companions. I have yet to meet mine, because I have not seen him, but I did sleep right below him in our bunk bed. Funny no?
So everyone speaks super fast Spanish. I am having a very difficult time understanding them but I know that over time I will gradually increase my skills with faith in the Lord. It’s amazing how much more Spanish I’ve been able to pick up in the last 5 hours of being here. So today for our first day, they give us a really lazy day. Just have to eat and go to one meeting and then we get to sleep the rest of the day. I am pretty excited but I am super tired.
More about the CCM, the entire thing is in the middle of a really poor neighborhood but there is a huge wall that surrounds it. This place sort of seems more like a rehab place then it does an MTC. It was an astro-turf soccer field and it has a few basket ball courts. Over all, I think that it is really nice. It has a really pretty court yard area. All of the elders did stay up last night and wait for us. They cheered as we got off the bus and what was super cool was that I got to see my old companion Elder Johnson. He was not feeling good so he was not there at the "gaultlet" but I did find him later that night at bed time. I can already tell that I am going to love this place. Foods good, Spanish well, and atmosphere awesome!!

Con amor
Elder Harris

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

"Called to Serve" and a call home from SLC Airport!

24 November 2010
Well it has been an amazing week for the Harris family and appropriately we have much to give thanks for especially this Thanksgiving!
Elder Harris called home yesterday to tell us his Visa had come. The overwhelming feelings of gratitude to our Heavenly Father are hard to describe. We only know that it feels like a small miracle. We were told by officials that it would be 6 to 8 weeks. He was humble and ready to take any assignment the Lord had in mind for him even if it meant going somewhere stateside. As parents we were upset for him but immensely proud of his attitude.
Elder Harris had the amazing opportunity to speak and bear his testimony to the Peruvian Ambassador just a week or so later. Some may think it was a coincidence but we believe not. He and those Elders, that were held back, had an important mission to fulfill. They needed to help the spirit touch the heart of the Ambassador and we believe they did. Someone mentioned their situation to the Ambassador after he asked why these missionaries were still in the MTC. He said he would check into the VISA problem. Three weeks to the day Jaren was originally supposed to leave his VISA arrived. We feel a need to thank those who prayed for him, fasted for him, and put his name on the temple rolls but most of all we feel the need to thank our Heavenly Father for blessing him for his faith!
When Jaren called us yesterday it was to say he would be leaving today on United Airlines from Salt Lake to Dallas to Florida and then onto Peru. Well severe winter storms came in. They left MTC at 3:00 am and arrived safely for their 6 am flight to find it was canceled. Another test of faith? Yes! All ten Elders in Jaren’s group were able to find seats on Delta airline from Salt Lake to Atlanta, then on to Lima, Peru. Remember it’s the day before Thanksgiving..high travel day..the Lord blessed them again!

Jaren had the opportunity to call us this morning and speak to us about his experiences in the MTC. It was wonderful to hear his voice, to hear firsthand how humble he has become and how dedicated to the Lord’s work he is. He expressed his love and gratitude for family and friends, the letters, and packages and quarters he received. He expressed his love for the Savior and his divine work. He told us of his renewed dedication to living the gospel to its fullness. He told us of his personal challenge to finish reading the book “Jesus the Christ” which he is about half way through. He challenged us as parents to attend the temple more often and to Aubrei, his older sister, to think about going to the temple. He talked about how wonderful his teachers in the MTC were. He discussed how he worked extra each day on his vocabulary so he could articulate better. He challenged his younger two sisters to study the Spanish language more and increase their vocabulary. He said he wanted to be the best he could be and be ready to spread the gospel to the Peruvian people. He mentioned how he was able to see his college roommate and best friend Carson while walking the temple grounds. He said they were able to sit together and talk about their experiences. He told us what a great opportunity it had been to be district leader for five weeks in the MTC. He told us how great the spirit was when he bore his testimony to the Peruvian ambassador. He said he felt blessed that he was able to listen to four apostles of the Lord and two seventies speak while he was there. He told us with excitement of a Sister missionary who grew up in his mission area of North Lima. He loved telling us how he asked her what food she ate growing up. How she told him she ate ants, worms, snakes and crocodiles. We groaned and he laughed. He was especially excited about the crocodiles. He expressed excitement and anticipation about seeing monkeys. He said he has an obsession about monkeys and can’t wait. He told us again and again his love for the Lord. He told us he feels like he knows the Lord Jesus Christ so much better now and wants to know more. He told us that he wants to live so the spirit will always guide him. He said he has had so many promptings that it is just amazing. He said he feels that there is something extremely important in store for him and he needs to live so the spirit will guide him. We are extremely proud of him and very humbled by his example.
Please continue to keep Elder Harris in your hearts and prayers as he labors for the next twenty-two months in Peru.
You can send him mail free through www.dearelder.com

Friday, November 19, 2010

"Elder Harris stop being dumb"

Hola mi familia y amigos.
Como le va?

I have had a fantastic week this week. First thing first, I am no longer sick. I feel fantastic and I thank everyone that has sent me letters wishing me well. I know that the Lord will bless you. Second this week was the first week that my companion and I got to teach the first lesson all in Spanish. WOWOWOWOW it was really, really hard, but the Lord pulled through for me, because he is the man. My companion, who is struggling with the language, had a hard time but in my personal study this week I spent a lot of time working phrases and vocabulary that I wanted to say. I know that when you prepare yourself the spirit will bring all that you studied to your remembrance. So Haleigh and Saydi study hard and then pray to the Lord so that he will allow the Holy Ghost to bring all that knowledge to you mind. I promise it works. Our district has now made the goal to no longer speak in English, and I have quickly learned that Spanish is all about the verbs. If you know the verb you know the context of the sentence. All the other vocab is not really all that important. Any way back to the lesson, so during the lesson I was just talking in Spanish to the investigator, when all of the sudden a scripture came to my mind. We were talking about the importance of prayer and how prayer is a direct communication with our father in heaven, the investigator who has never prayed like we do, because he was catholic, said that he was unsure of why it was so important. I then, like I said before pulled out of the air (well the credit be to the spirit) a totally awesome scripture. The scripture can be found in the book of Mormon in Enos. Chapter 1 verses 5 and 6, this is the point in which Enos, having extreme faith asks the lord for forgiveness of his sins. The Lord then answers and tells Enos that his sins are forgiven. I have read this passage before but the power of the spirit...... was INSANELY strong and I bore testimony to him that he could have answers to his prayers, maybe not in this exact way, but we can have that exact same feeling and testimony that Enos had. I Explained it better the first time I apologize, but....but the best part was that I didn’t say any of that in English. I related that entire principle the SPANISH!!!!!! After the lesson I learned one of the most valuable lessons that I think I have ever learned. After God gives you a gift, thank him. I have seen the effects of not thanking him. NOT in this situation, I thanked him seconds after I spoke (while my companion was talking) and later that night... But I realized that... we should all look at all these wonderful things that God gives us every day. God loves us so much and gives us almost anything that we want and what are we if we don’t thank him for those blessings. In a talk given by a member of 70s Kevin W. Pearson said something that I think will stick with me the rest of my mission if not my entire life. He said "if we are awake 16 hours in the day working, how many of those hours did you work as a disciple of Jesus Christ." This statement blew my mind, because as a representatives of Jesus Christ what are we but impostors if we do not follow the master and show his great example. I love this church, every time I seem to get a little doubt in my mind the Lord humbles me and tells me bluntly,
"Elder Harris stop being dumb"
Well I have covenanted with the Lord that I will do my best to stop being dumb about the gospel. I know it is true, I know that Christ lived, now it is time to share that knowledge with the rest of the world.

Con Amor
Elder Harris

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The worth of souls is great!

Wow this week has been really hard for me. We are starting to learn upper level Spanish and it was really difficult. I am also super sick... but I remind myself that there is opposition in all things.
Thank you so much for all the letters and packages, every time that I get one it brightens my day. 
Coolest thing ever happened this past week. I had the opportunity to meet the Peru Ambassador. He was one of the coolest people I have ever meet. He was super short like up to my shoulder short and had medium length wavy hair, and the best part was that he was extremely dark, almost like he had been in the sun getting a tan for the last month!!!! 
Side Note: he brought his wife with him, who spoke the fastest Spanish I have ever heard. I literally pulled a " best two years" moment and leaned to my companion and said, “what language is that?” He said, “I think she is speaking Spanish.” We laughed about it later. Anyway I had to go to another class before meeting him and practice some Spanish that would be appropriate to say to him. For example what to call him and how to address him if we had to talk to him and ect. 
There were only 8 of us in the room so if you can imagine we got to really meet this guy. The Ambassador could speak both English and Spanish, but we were told that we should speak English to him if we had a question.
Well here is were the super cool part comes in. He started talking to us about how much he liked that young people in the church and how they had such... determination and focus as to where they are going and what they are doing now. As the conversation progressed he asked the question, Why... Why do you have such determination? If you can believe it, the spirit filled me up with like super confidence. Myself and another elder in the room bore our testimonies to him. IT was one of the best testimonies I have ever given, and what I feel is almost the best part is that I have no idea what I said. I was speaking in English but the words were not mine. I just talked to him and told him of my love for the gospel, without teaching him ( because we were not allowed). Right after we finished with our testimonies he said that he could feel something in the room!!!!!, And that he was interested in find out what the feeling was!!!! Unfortunately we were not allowed to say anything else because we were short on time and he had other "more pressing" appointments to go to. I know that some day that man is going to accept the gospel and that it might be in the near future. AHHHHHHHHH He is so Ripe for the Gospel. Any way it was really really cool and I feel like that may have been one of the reasons I needed to stay in Provo, though I do not know for sure the reason for my extended stay, I do know that all the credit goes to our father in heaven for allowing me to have such a amazing opportunity.
For all of my family and friends, please know that with god anything is possible, and that HE takes the weak and makes them strong. If ever you have the opportunity to show an increase in love for your neighbor, you must do so. God is preparing  a way for you to accomplish his work, and this may be the only chance. Missionary work is so powerful and it transcends the MTC and the Mission, be must all be more of a missionary in our lives, because as we know the worth of souls is great in the sight of God. I know that god lives and the Christ lives. I know that the power of the atonement is real and all we must do is ask for forgiveness with a humble heart and a contrite spirit. I know that a prophet lives. He cares for us and receives modern revelation. I know without a shadow of a doubt that the book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ. With that book, all of our questions can be answered and we can find relief and joy. God loves you, Christ loves you, and I know that they want nothing but to have you back in there out stretched arms.
-Elder Harris