Sunday, August 2, 2015

Coming Home

First of all, I just wanted to say.  It is a little strange that for the first time in a long time, I am the one updating my blog, not my mom.

This means many things, but in the end it basically means that I am home.  I am no longer in Honduras, and I am now in my own house, with my own family.

When I was in my final interview, my mission President told me that my transition home would be harder than my transition to the mission.  For me, part of that meant saying goodbye to many friends and adopted family in Honduras.  It was difficult knowing that it is very difficult for me to see them again.

The last few days in the mission and the first few days home I passed in a daze.  After so much time telling everyone that I only had "a little more than a year" in the mission, and trying with all my heart to be "baggy", it had finally arrived.  That strange day when you go to changes, and yet you don't leave.  You stay until everyone else has left, and then it is only you and your group.  It all felt surreal to me, like a dream.

We were able to go to the temple as a group, and some last moments in the most sacred ground in Honduras.  I was able to feel the comfort of the Lord, giving me peace when my soul was troubled.

We had one final dinner with President Bowler and his wife, and then it was off to bed, in preparation to arrive to the airport the next morning.

We almost didn't return to Utah due to heavy fog and rain in Tegucigalpa. That airport is dangerous anyway, but the pilot wasn't sure he was going to be able to land.  When he finally came in, everyone in the airport headed for Atlanta cheered loudly.

After more than a 12 hour journey, we arrived at Salt Lake City.  We collected our bags and we finally arrived to see our families.  There was lots of cheering and crying.  It still felt surreal to me.  I wasn't quite sure how to react.  But one fact settled in...I was home.

Homecoming Talk

And know ye that ye shall be judges of this people, according to the judgment which I shall give unto you, which shall be just. Therefore, whatmanner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am.
(3 Nephi 27:27)

God has always put a very high bar for his children.  From ancient times he has motivated us to be like him.  This is something that although we want to achieve it,  we sometimes feel like we are so far,  and that it is impossible. It is important that we really understand what he wants.

In the last General Conference, one of the speakers explained it this way:

This statement—“a saint is a sinner who keeps on trying”—should reassure and encourage members of the Church. Although we are referred to as “Latter-day Saints,” we sometimes flinch at this reference. The term Saints is commonly used to designate those who have achieved an elevated state of holiness or even perfection. And we know perfectly well that we are not perfect.
Our theology does teach us, though, that we may be perfected by repeatedly and iteratively “relying wholly upon” the doctrine of Christ: exercising faith in Him, repenting, partaking of the sacrament to renew the covenants and blessings of baptism, and receiving the Holy Ghost as a constant companion to a greater degree. As we do so, we become more like Christ and are able to endure to the end, with all that that entails. 3 In less formal terms, God cares a lot more about who we are and who we are becoming than about who we once were. 4 He cares that we keep on trying.
Conference April 2015

God wants us to become like him,  but he does not expect us to be like him...yet. He provides his love and grace to help us. He uses it to lift us up.  As we understand it more and more, it gives us a reason for our existence and gives us lasting peace and happiness.  It changes us.  

President Uctdorf said:

Trying to understand God’s gift of grace with all our heart and mind gives us all the more reasons to love and obey our Heavenly Father with meekness and gratitude. As we walk the path of discipleship, it refines us, it improves us, it helps us to become more like Him, and it leads us back to His presence. “The Spirit of the Lord [our God]” brings about such “a mighty change in us, … that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually.”28
Therefore, our obedience to God’s commandments comes as a natural outgrowth of our endless love and gratitude for the goodness of God. This form of genuine love and gratitude will miraculously merge our works with God’s grace. Virtue will garnish our thoughts unceasingly, and our confidence will wax strong in the presence of God.29
Dear brothers and sisters, living the gospel faithfully is not a burden. It is a joyful rehearsal—a preparation for inheriting the grand glory of the eternities. We seek to obey our Heavenly Father because our spirits will become more attuned to spiritual things. Vistas are opened that we never knew existed. Enlightenment and understanding come to us when we do the will of the Father.
Conference April 2015

I have always been a perfectionist. I want everything about myself and my actions to be perfect.  My problem is that I carry it to an extreme.  In my life I have had many times where I have doubted my testimony,  more than anything because I didn't feel that mine was as strong as other people's.
In my mission,  my testimony was tested more than it ever had before.  I felt acutely what I perceived to be a weakness in my own testimony.  I felt lost,  and somehow I could sense that I hadn't quite arrived at my potential. But I couldn't figure out what I lacked. God has a promise for those that want to change.  He said:

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.
Ether 12:27

I prayed to strengthen my testimony.  I read the scriptures. In the end,  my answer came in another form. Through one of God's servants.

As I listened to the general conference in October of 2014, one talk caught my attention. It impacted me and helped me to see one area in which I needed to improve.  I will only share a small part:

President Boyd K. Packer has taught “that our spirit and our body are combined in such a way that our body becomes an instrument of our mind and the foundation of our character” (“The Instrument of Your Mind and the Foundation of Your Character” [Church Educational System fireside, Feb. 2, 2003], 2; Therefore, please use good judgment in what and especially how much you eat, and regularly give your body the exercise it needs and deserves. If you are physically able, decide today to be the master of your own house and begin a regular, long-term exercise program, suited to your abilities, combined with a healthier diet. Spiritual confidence increases when your spirit, with the help of the Savior, is truly in charge of your natural man or woman.
Elder Jörg Klebingat, Conference October 2014

These words impacted me greatly.  I felt that it was God speaking directly to me.  For the first time in my mission,  I started an exercise program.  I started getting in better shape. As i did,  something interesting happened.  Add my self esteem and confidence grew,  my testimony did as well. I finally realized that my doubts were not so much in God,  as in myself. God used that talk to help me become more of what his vision was for me.

I saw so many other examples in my mission.  I remember that there was a girl that needed permission to be baptized from her guardian. She wasn't too interested in giving it from strange things she had heard about the Church.  I remember that I asked her if she had seen a change in her child since she had begun to go to church.  There she changed and her outlook changed as she begun to ponder the change.  When people become closer to God, they automatically change.

I would like to testify with Moroni. We can become like God if we let him in, and thus we will be prepared to live with him.

Monday, June 29, 2015

How to be Invincible mind is still processing this day.  

The baggy part of me is like ¨10, 10, 10, 10¨ and my heart is like ¨OH MY, I have had like 2 years here and I am leaving it, how will I ever recuperate_¨.
My conciense mind doesn´t process it yet.  It´s just on autopilot.  Teach, contact, ect.
This is my last full week in Honduras for who knows how much time.  I want to return, but I have so much waiting for me there.  I have so much to do.
Within 10 days I will leave these loving hands that have cared for me for so long...and I return to the loving hands that have cared for me since birth.
It seems appropriate that Olive was born this last week.  Its how I feel. I was 19 years in pre mission life, 2 years in the womb of the mission, and now I have to be reborn.
I want to know what will be different, what will be the same, I honestly don´t know.  I just ask that God helps me make it a good change.
Thank you everyone for supporting me for so long.  I know that my mission is not only mine, its everyone's.
I am so tired, and yet every day my body finds the strength to get up and follow the routine.  Months of developing habits are now maintaining me.  Want to know why the church pushes so hard that people learn to do good things really young, because it helps them push forward when things are not so bright and beautiful.
I have loved every moment, and I will treasure these last few like a cactus stores water from the desert storms. 
I don´t think that my mind will process everything until the plane takes off.  It still hasn´t settled in yet.
I am sharing an area with another missionary that fufilled a year this last week.  I bought him a cake and carefully meditated in the future.  I have so much in front of me and it seems like a marvelous adventure.  I don´t know if you guys have been able to feel the change, but the only thing I can say is that I am now very sure who I am.
I am a child of God.  That means that although I have problems and difficulties, I have the capacity to overcome anything.  I am invincible as long as I have him with me.
I am so happy.
Thank you,
Elder Henrie

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Missions are the Best, Plans for when he gets home

Sorry for the sad lack of pictures this week.  But that´s ok right?
I have been busy this week.  I feel like we worked harder than any other week.
I now officially have less days left in the mission than my companion has months.  That´s a little weird.
I am still doing good.  I follow the rules and I work hard.
I don´t reaaly now what to say.  I mean, I can answer all your crazy questions in about 3 weeks.
I love you guys.
For all you guys preparing to go on a mission.  It is the best.  Its like a movie, but real.  And its awsome!
Thank you for all your support.

Instructions for when he get home:

First of all.  Thanks for all you are already doing to help me come down running from the airplane.  I have this weird fear that if I don´t stay busy I will just melt.
I would like to get a phone as soon as possible after getting back.  If possible, like...Friday the 10th of July
I promise its a little more than just tech starvation after 2 years.  Its important for me to stay in contact with people here, and also it will be key in my looking for work and all that stuff.  Depending on how dead my computer is, I will wait on getting more technology.  I want to take it slowly.
As for the rest of it, please don´t go too crazy.  I am tired of everything fried and fatty, so if you can feed me just as healthy as you did before the mission (maybe more so) I will be happy.  I feel like I need it.
Just to warn you guys, based on the time I get in to SLC, I will probably do hugs, kisses, and then want to sleep.  But I really don´t know.  I may be so full of nervous energy that I won´t be able too.  The good thing is that Honduras is on the same schedule.
Anything you want me to bring from Honduras?  I am planning on bringing some things back to you guys.  I promise I won´t go too crazy, but there are some things here that you can´t get anywhere else.
Other than that I just wanted to tell you that I am fantastic and that I am loving life.  Utah feels like a dream, and it will be really weird to go back.  Especially that I  have the habit now to sleep on transportation and I probably won´t even notice the 7 hour flight.
If there is anything I can do to help you guys, just tell me.
By the way mom, I love you so much.  I know I have told you a lot in the mission,  but I feel like a reminder can´t help.  Thank you for everything you give and have given me.  The goal is to be the least of a burden I can for you guys when I get back.  I now understand how expensive it is.
Thank you for everything.  I love you guys.
Elder Henrie

Monday, June 15, 2015

Peña de San Marcos

Things were cool this week.  We did divisions with Elder Rivero and Elder Foster.  I got to go and visit Las Unidas, a quite bueatiful community just outside of Choluteca.
We had interviews with President Bowler.  He basically told me that he would see me the 4th of July for my final interview.  We talked a little about the area and about our investigators.  I think things went well.
I am happy with what I am doing and how I am finishing.
Today we went to the Peña de San Marcos.  Its basically a cool hike where you are next to what looks like a huge drop, but isn´t that big.  But there is a lot of wind, and so it feels higher.  We did a stick pull, and enjoyed the cold (rare here in the south).  It was very beautiful.  I would have taken more photos, but my camera died.
Thank you for everything you guys do for me.
Elder Henrie

Monday, June 8, 2015

No Longer a Leopard

Again I am so happy this week.  I don´t know how to describe it.
I feel weird as things seem to be resolving themselves and finishing up.  I typed my final report today, ready to present to President in my interview with him on Wednesday.
This week was full of being really really busy.  I am trying to have the best change I have every had.  Our logro of the week was that one of our investigators named Isidrio went to church. It means that if he continues going that he can be babtized this month.  He has health problems, so it has been a fight, but he made it.
It is raining super hard right now.  But that´s Honduras during this time of year.  Rain, Rain, and more Rain.
I love you guys.  I don´t know really what to say.  I can only share what I found in my spanish to english dictionary when you look up honduras.  It says basically, to be out of one´s depth.  That´s how I have felt here.  But at the same time, I have loved it.  I just had to learn to scuba dive first.
I want to testify that the mission has been the best 2 years of my life until now, and it will be, until I get married and eternity starts.
Thank you for everything you guys do for me.  I love you.  Take care of yourselves this week.
Ps.  I am no longer a leopard.  I changed back.
Elder Henrie

Monday, June 1, 2015

Turning into a Leopard

First of all.  I am not dying, I do not have any weird tropical disease.

I am simply turning into a leopard.  Or at least that´s what I tell people.

What I have is basically a heat rash.  It happens when you take a white gringo from cold utah and make him sweat more than he has sweat in his entire life, in a matter of 7 weeks.

It is not dangerous, I just have to put on a lotion every day and bathe twice daily.  It should go away in 3 to 4 days.

This week was great.  First of all great because I stayed in my area.  I will be finishing my mission with Elder Hernandez.  All the other missionaries are trying to make my baggy, but I strive onward, leaving them all behind.
I am doing my best to make sure I work just as hard (or harder) than I have in all previous changes.  Thus the skin
condition for sweating a lot.

I am happy, happier than I could ever describe, and I am sad, sadder than I could ever describe.  I feel the ending, and at the same time, a beginning.  But I always feel the saddness knowing that I will never be a missionary here again.

So I follow onward, or as they say it here, Estoy en la lucha.  The fight against evil, and tiredness.

I am so grateful for my time here, I have loved it and I don´t want it to end, but all things have to end.

Please take care of yourselves, and I will do the same here.

I love you,

Elder Henrie

What was the most important thing you learned on you mission?
That when you stop worrying about what others think, and it only matters what God thinks, is when you are so happy nothing can cover it.

How did the Atonement change you?
It helped me change little by little, slowly recognizing weaknesses and making them strengths.  As I realized how much it cost, it helped me make sacrifices to help others.  As I understood what it has done, it made me eager to help others be changed by it.

Did you love your mission? Why? How did you develop that love?
Please don´t talk about it in past tense yet, I still have 39 days left.
I have loved my mission more than anything I can describe except maybe my family.  I have learned firsthand that there are wonderful people in all places, languages, and walks of life.  As I received so much love, It just became normal to give it back.  As I worked and helped people, and I saw how it helped them, I felt that joy that only comes from the spirit.  It became like an addiction, but a good one.  The children of God are happiest when they fufill their purpose, and their purpose is the same as his, to bring to pass the inmortality and eternal life themselves and others.
I also love it because I learned what is really important, and it basically is that you and your family are truly happy and bound by covenants that you are constantly living.

Monday, May 25, 2015

"...our lives passed away like as it were unto us a dream, ..." (Jacob 7:26)

I don´t know how to express how I feel.
I feel like everything is a dream.  But I´m now at the point where one is waking up and the colors start bluring together and the sounds mesh as your mind changes from fiction to reality.
I will continue working until the end.  And I will work hard.  I will enjoy this last bit of time the lord has given me and will treat it like the gold I now understand it is.
Then will come the time.  The time to face reality. 
Thank you for everything you guys have done for me.  I have lived well here for the last 2 years.  Thanks to your sacrifices and love.
This week we did more of what missionaries do.  We worked and taught the gospel.  Our new method of contacting is harder, but the people we find are more interested and more dedicated.
We are still working with the old people.  We should have 2-3 baptisms here soon.  But we are making sure they are converted, not just baptisms with water, but with fire and the Holy Ghost.
I am happy and content.  I know that the lord blesses and protects me every day.  I love every one of you.
Thank you.
Elder Henrie

Monday, May 18, 2015

A Photo Scavenger Hunt for P-day

This week was really good.  We got a lot of work done and we wasted very little time.  Which is exactly how I like it.
We did a photo scavenger hunt for the zone activity today.  It was the last brainchild and gift of Elder Stoddard, who leaves here sunday. I am gonna miss him.
I am happy and working.  This week we had our stake conference.  Hermana Bowler and the new senior couple came to see the houses.  Ours was good.  They asked us to clean up the backyard.
One of our investigators brought a friend to church.  She isn´t from our area, but she went.  The investigator told us that her friend told her that ¨the mormons are more lost than anyone else¨ and all she said was ¨come and see¨.  It was cool.
One the other side of things, we saw how satan works very hard when someone is trying to do the right thing.  Lots of people have had problems, and we are working to help them have faith and trust in God´s timing.
Things are good today.  Thank you for everything you guys do for me.
ELder Henrie

Monday, May 11, 2015

Chasing away the baggy monster

Things are good here in Por Venir.

I enjoyed a fun skype call yesterday with the family.  I could see them perfectly, but it was a little hard for them to see me.  It was great to see all the family.

I am good and happy here.  I am working my but off, but that is when a missionary is happiest.  I chase the baggy monster away by working and focusing on the basics.

It doesn´t mean that I´m not making plans.  The other day as I listened to conference, Elder Oaks reminded me to make spiritual goals for when I return as well as physical goals.  So I started reading up in the Book of Mormon of what the best missionaries do when they return home.  It was an interesting study.  I will share more of that later.

This week was full of a lot of work.  We have been really busy and we are finding a lot of new people.  We are also focusing on finding and trying to reactivate some less actives.  There are a lot of great people here that are really acceptive.

I am enjoying life and I am happy.

Thanks for your prayers, I appreciate them.

Elder Henrie

Monday, May 4, 2015

Hot but working Hard

We have a new way to contact people now.  We challenge them for baptism in the first contact.

It sounds crazy, but it works, and it helps us know who is actually interested in recieving an answer from God.
A member whom I told said for him it was another fufillment that God is accelerating his work.  I hadn´t thought of it that way.

It has been very hot, but I love it here.  I am loving being with my companion.  He is obedient and likes to work hard,  nothing more really matters to me.  I want to end the best way I can.  It is weird to be counting down the time, but I am good.

I decided this week that something I have to do is always help people after talking to a woman who got offended when she really needed help and no one helped.  We are now helping her get to know the church is true, but not always its members.  I always want to be someone that people can ask.

Thank you for your prayers. 
Elder Henrie

Monday, April 27, 2015

Q & A

Note from Mom:  I don't think there has been a week on his mission that Graig hasn't written a blog post. He seemed to be distracted this week registering for his BYU classes this fall.  I pieced together this post from about 4 emails he sent this week.

Q. Have you been able to do any site seeing in your new area?
A.  Not yet.  Next week we are suposably going to the beach.

Q.  Did you sign up for an orchestra class?
A. Yes I did sign up.

Q. How safe are you?  
A. Super safe.

Q. Are there lots of Gangs where you are?  
A. No.  And if there are they aren´t active.

Q. Isn't the south where you started your mission?
A. Yes.  But in San Lorenzo.

Q. Do you have lots of people you are teaching?
A. We have a lot of potential investigators

Mom: You should send pictures of where you live.
Graigry:  I tried, I will try again this week.  (I get the feeling there isn't very good internet where he is.)

The other day, Your picture fell off the wall in the hall upstairs, rolled on its side down the first flight of stairs, tipped so as to slide between the bars on the banister, and fell to the basement where it landed face up.  I wouldn't believe it but I watched the whole thing.  Not to worry, it didn't even break.

Graigry's reply:
They say in the mission that when your plack lifts up, its because your family (or your girlfriend) is thinking of you.
Now I know the equivilent at home.

Thank you for everything mom.

Monday, April 20, 2015

So many changes

Rest Stop

First of all.  I am now in the south.  I am with Elder Hernandez in Por Venir Choluteca.  My comp is rather new, but he is cool and he teaches well.
Our ward is really excited about missionary work, so that helps us out a lot.  I am excited to be working here.
Its hard to explain how much I drink here to sustain the constant sweating.  I am drinking about 5 liters a day.
I am happy and still working. That is what is important.
I am keeping to the basics. I wake up, I do exercise, I eat breakfast, I shower, and I begin to study.
Things are so weird.  I don+t even know what to say.
The thing I learned this week was from this old member who said something I interpreted as wise.  It went something like...
The experiences of today are written in the journal, but they can´t prepare you for the trials of tomorrow.  It reminded me that we are all in a state of constant progress.  That we must constantly stay close to god.
I am happy.
Elder Henrie

I have so many random goals.
Eat healthier.
Get a Costco Card.
Get Married.
Get a desktop computer upgrade.
Get a large smartphone.
Not ¨Die*¨in the mission.  To continue working until the end.
Not play video Games.
Concentrate on my studies by studying in the library.
Loving life.

Monday, April 13, 2015

This week was good.

We did a buch of plain old work.  I know it sounds kind of boring, but it makes the week go really fast.

This week are changes.  They will advise us tomorrow if one of us leaves.  I don`t know what I want.  I am happy with whatever the Lord gives me.

The funny story for this week is what happened with one of our Ïnvestigadores.  We worked really hard and got her to go to church.  Her name is Elizabeth.  All was fine, she`s kind of an older lady, so a member brought her.  A member of the ward took care of making sure she felt welcome.  All perfect.

Then, in the third hour, the bishop asked us if we were teaching her.  I said yes.  He then showed me her babtisimal record.  She was baptized in 1991.  She was pretty embarrased.  She said she had forgotten (she is a little old) that she had been baptized.  She had already comitted to be babtized on the 25th.  It made me lauph.  It then turned into a bueatiful experience because she told us that Jesus had sent us to remind her of who she was.  We changed her goal to be baptized to one of going to the temple.  She said yes.  Things are good.

I am happy, there is not a lot that I can say.

Elder Henrie

Monday, April 6, 2015

Estoy Feliz

I am so happy.  Conference was a great spiritual boost.  I loved every session.  I loved how they made some changes so that it was focused on doctrine.

I had some good impressions.  I loved every talk.  The strangest impression was during President Monson´s talk in the priesthood session.  I felt like I should read D & C 88. So on Sunday Morning I read it.  As I read, I felt like God was giving me his perspective on what he wants me to be.  I felt like my goals and my desires were put into check and I saw where I was, and where I will be one day.  It was a beautiful experience.

I really enjoyed Elder Holland`s talk as well.  It reminded me of all those great days rock climbing.  I realized that the importance of knowing the Fall is because it makes the Atonement what it is.  I thought of it again as I came to Danli to write today.

We managed to have 4 people there.  For 1 lady it was the first time.  She is a little Old, and said she didn`t remember much, but she remembered how she felt.  She said she felt peace.  The spirit is so simple and so bueatiful.

I am grateful for the knowledge and strength I have from the gospel.  I am grateful for parents who always `put me first, even if I didn`t want too.

Thank you for your prayers.

Elder Henrie

Monday, March 30, 2015

Doing What Missionaries Do

This week was full of missionary work.  Elder Silversmith and I had our best week together fulfilling our purpose.  We taught people, we opened the mouth, we did what good missionaries do.

We also did divisions with the Zl´s this week.  It was interesting to see a different perspective on teaching and investigators. I was with Elder Crawford from Costa Rica.  Elder Silversmith went with ELder SMith.

From the investigators, as always some want to progrss and others not. The funny thing is that here if a person doesn´t want to recieve you, they just don´t answer so its quite easy!

This week I randomly found a guy that makes mandolins (instrument similar to the guitar that has the same string arrangement as the violin). I was tempted for a moment, but I doubt it!  We will see if we can teach him later this week.

It is the hottest week of the year here.  The good thing is that I am in Paraiso and that means hotter than normal, but not infierno level.  

I have been cooking a lot lately.  The newest thing my companion taught me to make are omelettes.  I ate about one of those a day.

Things are going great down here.  I love you guys!

Elder Henrie

Monday, March 23, 2015

Enduring Happily to the end

My companion is totally a chef.  Those fish tacos you see there are his work.  I was at his side eating pasta.  I laugh every time that he talks of cooking because he talks about mixing flavors and making it look good.

I talk of how much food I can get for the price.

It has been a blessing because our cocinera moved, so we are cooking a lot more.

All the investigators that we had prepared for this month have come up with problems, so we are helping them develop trust in God and confidence in their decisions.  We did a lot of great work this week.

Being with Elder Silversmith again has reminding me a lot of the fundamentals that they teach in the MTC.  It has been good to remember all of them.  It helps me stay focused on what is my purpose.

I am doing great here in Paraiso, enduring happily to the end.  

Sorry I am writing so little these days.  Its because there isn`t much to write and the time flys.

Know that I am happy.  I am not perfect, but I now understand that those two things don`t go together.  Happy means that you are imperfect but satisfied that every day you try to improve.  Perfect means you have died and are in the celestial kingdom.  Seriously, its the only way.

Thank you for all the support that you have given me.

Elder Henrie

Monday, March 16, 2015

I am so happy right now

It was one of those weeks that I feel like I really fulfilled my purpose as a missionary.  I feel so good and I am very content with my work here.

I am really excited to be here.  I feel like that even as some things don't go how I want, God is opening other doors.

God works in the lives of the people. As you love him and trust in him he answers your prayers.

I am working well with Elder Silversmith. It is great to be with him because he is already adjusted to the mission. He is ready to work and is willing to do so.  

Sorry that I don't have much to write today, its because there wasn't a lot of crazy stuff that happened.  Just a lot of work.

I love you guys and I wish you all the blessings in the world.

ELder Henrie

PS.  Those are small cakes called penquinos we are balancing on our heads.  I was talking about how the gospel is a firm base on which we can base our entire lives.  All finds its place and you can achieve everything.  Our heads are not firm bases. Hermana Cook got the most with 4 balanced for like 2 seconds.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Still in Paradise

I am totally fantastic this week.  We had changes and I stayed in El Paraiso.

I am now with Elder Silversmith.  He is an awsome Elder from New Mexico.  He looks more latino, but is actually Native American.  His ancestors are Navajos.  I`ve already learned a lot from him.  He has a very unique perspective on the world.

I am super pumped to be here for another change.  I feel like all the seeds I have been placing for all this time are all coming to fruit.  I am now the oldest missionary (in terms of number of changes) in Paraiso.  The members know me and I know them.  Things are going great.

Our stake is going to be implementing a new missionary plan where the Ward mission leader has 2 assistents that have the ward divided into ^districts^.  These districts will have a Noche de Hermanamiento every week that they will invite people too.  It is basically an attempt to involve everyone in the MIssionary work but also to create a real ward family.  The idea is that noone loses touch because they know everyone.  They are even asking that they reorganize Home and Visiting teaching companionships to fit the districts.  The idea is to reduce the space and to heighten the friendship.

I personally think its a fantastic idea.  Its like an extension to the advice that Elder Duncan gave the missionaries a couple of months ago.

I am happy.  We have a great zone.  The only sad thing was I lost a couple of Hermanas in my district because one was sick and wasn`t improving.  It was sad to lose them, they were both great hermanas.

We have a great crazy group in Barrio Paraiso now.  There is a lot of energy in the group and everyone is friends.  It is a great start to a great change.

Thank you for your prayers and your love.  I love you too.

Invite a ton of people to General Conference!

ELder Henrie

Monday, March 2, 2015

I am great

That's the only way I can describe how I feel.  I feel fantastic.  I am an imperfect person in the service of God and he still blesses me and loves me.

We all have weaknesses, but God blesses us bountifully.  He doesn´t demand perfection to receive help, he requires a willing heart.

To talk about all my blessings this week would be difficult.  I have seen so much love in the service of God.  God loves me and loves the people I serve.

Know that I am happy and that everything is great!

I went to consejo again this week.  It was good to see old friends and meet new ones.  Elder Caceres and I did divisions, and we had a long talk about everything.

We worked and walked and sweated, and it all felt great.

This week are changes, but we don´t know if we have changes yet, they will tell us tomorrow.  The most probable is that my companion leaves.  He is really great, and the Lord has had him here a long time, but I would guess that the Lord needs him in another place.

Nothing really crazy happened this week, but I felt the love of God in my life.

God never forgets us, he just lets us fall so that we can get up again.

Perfection is not to be the best, it is to be constantly better.

Elder Henrie

Monday, February 23, 2015

True happiness

This week was really good.  Its hard to explain why except that we were busy.  Also I got to see a missionary homecoming to a family that has been struggling a lot lately.  There was a very sweet spirit in that home, that after so much hardship, things got happy.

I was thinking a lot about that this week.  Happiness.  I realized something that I have always know, and yet never understood.  True happiness is when you live the commandments.  Always looking for opportunities to lauph and have fun, but always taking into account the Lord.

The end result is you have many positive experiences in your life, and you are unweighed by sin.  Many people do good things, but balance it with bad things, so they are only half as happy as they could be.  True happiness comes from obedience, because you have all the good things lifting you up, and no mistakes weighing you down.

You are like the balloons that kids let go up into the sky, you have no limits.

I had a really great week this week, and I will have a better week this week.  Bad things will happen, but I can use the atonement to fix mistakes and forget pain.  

When I was in the CCM, we were shown a talk by one of the apostles.  He gave us two promises.  First, the mission was going to be the hardest thing we had ever done.  Second, the joy of christ would make it all worth it.

I know that´s true.  I had one of those weeks that testified to me that I am in the right place.

I love you all, thank you for all your support and love.

God Loves you.

ELder Henrie

Monday, February 16, 2015

Why I'm a Mormon

So this week was AWESOME.

We had a Zone conference on Wednesday.  We talked about a lot of the same things that we talked about in the Consejo, but we also got to watch the Meet the Mormons movie.  It was fantastic.  I totally loved it.  I loved the part at the beginning when it showed the different views of Mormons.  You feel like that a lot as a missionary...

Hey, we´re missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, have you heard of it?

(Blank look)

Or the Mormons

(confusion changes to happiness)

Oh ya, you guys can´t drink coffee can you?

Everyone in Paraiso says that because Paraiso is a MAJOR coffee producer.  There is a sign that I need a picture of that says

Paraiso, where the earth tastes of coffee.

We also had a Stake conference.  I saw a powerful example of revelation.  We had an investigator that went to the iglesia for the first time.  She has been considering getting a divorce with her husband.  The last speaker, Elder Morales of the Seventy, stood up and said [I feel impressed that I should talk to those of you who are thinking of getting a divorce[.

It was totally quiet.  He then began to talk of the importance of the family, how divorce was a last (very last) option.  He talked of many different ways to strengthen your family and fix problems.

Unfortunately, with how many people that came I wasn´t sitting by her.  But her friend that brought her told us it was very powerful for her.

THATS WHY I¨m a Mormon.  God speaks directly, not just by words written a thousand years ago.

So in general, it was a pretty inspiring week.  Miracles exist!

I love you guys.  Thank you for all your prayers.

Elder Henrie

Monday, February 9, 2015

Time flew this week

This week went by really fast. 
I got to go to the consejo de lideres de la mision.  It was fantastic, I learned a lot.  The interesting thing is that they didn´t talk about anything really new, but they showed me again how perfect this church (and its missionary program) is.  God had everything planned out.  If we follow his plan, things work out.
We had many small miracles this week.  One of our investigators that we hadn´t seen for weeks, came back, and is still positive.  Another investigator is progressing, even though I wasn´t sure if she would.
The mission is full of so many miracles.  I remember when I started, I always seemed to remember the miracles from the Ensign articles, and I thought, that is the mission. The truth is, those things do happen, but more common are the small tender mercies of the lord that you must look for and appreciate. 
A painting is what we call thousands of tiny brushstrokes.  That is what my mission has been (and will continue to be) for me.  It is bueatiful.
I have seen this week the blessings of the gospel in so many families.  It is in the family that the gospel really shows its power.  It makes a family blossom in their circumstances, and gives them hope to continue forward even as others might faltar.  God loves us, and has given us everything we need.
I thought I would be really baggy with Jessica getting home and everything.  I was for a little bit, and then I remembered where I was.  I am in the feild of miracles, where daily I see the light of God´s revelacion.
I love you all and thank you for all your prayers.
Have fantastic weeks, no matter where you are.

Elder Henrie