Sunday, May 19, 2013

Hanta Qullami‏


So I guess that title is Quechua for ''I love you''. I'm really not sure on the spelling, but now you know.

This last week was so awesome of course apart from being able to skype yesterday and so I'll do my best to get it all down. 
On Monday, we went to the beach and that was pretty cool. This time of year it is completely deserted and looked like a ghost town. The funniest part was when we passed by a store and an elder saw Dr. Pepper. All the gringos freaked out and then we found out that there was Mountain Dew too. I was laughing because I thought about Charlie on his mission. I was more than happy to find out that she had a Snickers and enjoyed every second of the 5 that it took me to eat it!

I almost flooded the church which could have been pretty bad. We were just trying to empty the baptismal font and next thing I know this room in the church was being filled with water. We turned on a pump to get it out, or so I thought. Then we went upstairs and I got to play the piano for a little which was awesome. The power went out so we went to see what happened and saw that there actually was more water in that room and it had reached the motor and shorted the power in the whole building. That was actually pretty bad. There were two members there and we got it all worked out. We turned the sprinklers on outside to get rid of the water and one of them was spraying in the wrong direction. I thought about all the times I got to fix our sprinklers with Dad. We would think we'd solved the problem and then there was another. They told me not to touch it, but I did and it sprayed all over me when the top popped off. I fixed that though and they were all laughing at me. I said ''I just want to serve'' and they all laughed even more.

So, I think I'm in that part of the mission where everyone says it all just changes and they are happy to be here. People told me it would take about 9 months and they were right. I wake up now and am happy to be a missionary. I want to work and talk with the people. Then the best part is getting home every night and just feeling like death because we're so tired. I love being with Elder Figallo and love this area. This is what I thought the mission would be like, but it's even better.

We had some cool lessons this week with one guy that lived in the US for 13 years and spoke English to me out of no where. We have been teaching his wife (or I don't know what to call it when they aren't married but live together). She's super cool and he's actually pretty cool too. So he knows a bunch about the Church and was asking all sorts of questions. As we said a prayer and then searched for scriptures ONLY IN THE BIBLE about the premortal existance it was super cool, and there are a bunch. The Spirit was there and next thing you know we were drinking Ecco together and just having a grand old time. His name is José and I really hope we can help him learn and grow.

We also got to talk to some Isrealites this week and that was pretty sad. It was a less active member and his absolutely, completely, totally confused sister who is an Isrealite (I don't know if that religion exists in the US). So she was using the LDS version of the scriptures and was preaching all sorts of false doctrine. Then she would turn to the Jehovah's Witness bible and I had no idea what was going on. She was taking her ideas from all over the place. I know she wanted to do what was right, but it was really sad to see her and is sad to see all the people who are just so confused. She started off with good principles and then distorted them until they were so confusing. She really knows the Bible though and has totally corrupted her brother. He says he knows the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true and that Joseph Smith restored the Church. He quotes from the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants and says he knows they are true. And then he goes on to say that the Church is of God, but His chosen people are the Isrealites. The women all walk around with their hair covered and all sorts of things. It's just really sad and more than ever I KNOW the importance of having a prophet to lead and guide us.

The coolest thing about church was an analogy that someone said about how the Church and life is like a treadmill. When we think we have reached what we need to we can't stop, because if we stop the thing goes backwards and takes us with it. It was a great reminder to me to keep moving forward always.

Also, an investigator wrote my name Elder Whiskey yesterday and that was super funny.

Talking to all you guys yesterday was more than words can describe. I have even more desires than ever to be a better missionary. It was funny to end the skype and then just jump back into Spanish and talk about what we need to do here to help the investigators and the ward. It just felt so normal -- I LOVE MY MISSION!!!!!!

A couple good scriptures are Helaman 5:50-52 about how the word changes people. Then we have Helaman 6:7-17 and it was pretty hard to read about them prospering because I knew they were just going to fall. A good reminder that we all have trials for a reason (Helaman 12:3). Helaman 10:2-11 was awesome about the priesthood sealing power. And then of course Helaman 13:12-14 about how we are saved by the righteous, it made me think about Alma the Younger. And to top it all off Helaman 7:7-9, it made me think about how even the prophets wanted to live in a different time. We are given what we need though and I am learning to be so happy with it.

I'll talk to you all soon and hope you have the greatest week ever. Make sure to enjoy the amazing weather. Thanks for being my family and friends I love you all so much.
Do it neatly Wheatley, (and everyone else too), love your more than happy best friend in Perú,
Elder Aaron Wheatley

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Point is He's Clearly Overreacting

Hola mis amigos,
Yeah, this week was one of those OTHER weeks. Those weeks that just make your face hurt from smiling and chill you to your very bones with pure goodness. I'm just full of sheer joy. There is sunshine in my soul today, si o si (that means for sure).
Alright, I'll do my best to get on with this letter and let you all enjoy the happiness with me. So before anything I want to say CONGRATULATIONS to my cousin and best friend Charlie. I'm super excited for you to get married. Everyone says she's a super cool girl, so that makes it all the better. It'll be fun to hear about all the changes that are happening in the family this summer. That includes the Youngs with their plans to join us (well I guess you guys) in my land of make believe. I'm praying that things work out for the house and if not a different one, but that would just about be the craziest thing in the world to move next door to Nomi.
Now back to my week. It's actually pretty funny because it starts out with one of the least pleasant memories of my whole mission. On Monday we were invited to eat ''tocuch'' with the Salvador family. I think that's how you spell it, but it should mean something like horse poop in Quechua. It's really that bad. Alright, sorry if that's super crude, but I really have no idea how else to describe it. It's fermented potatoes that reek and then they put it in some gelatenous mixture. Well, I was doing alright and we took some videos of us eating. I got it down, but made one mistake. I finished strong and then the hermana asked me if I wanted more. That's definitely a lesson learned. I told her just a little bit because I was really full, we had eaten just an hour before so I wasn't lying. She took it and just gave me a little more and I handled it like a dignified gentleman. My companion was so close to throwing up and we've been laughing about it the rest of the week. It's one of those mission food experiences that I'm grateful I had once and will do my best to never have again.
For Brianna's birthday I was actually on an exchange with Elder Arnett and we just partied it up. We listened to some good church music and ate delicious cake, of course with some IncaKola. He also had Nutella, which is acutally pretty cheep down here, and that was good as always. It was just fun to be thinking about you Brianna and I hope you had the greatest birthday ever.
Your pictures from Prom are so great and you look so beautiful. You are growing up way too fast as I previously have stated and wouldn't mind if you slowed it down a little bit. I hope you had a blast dancing the night away. Also, the pictures from your softball game looked so cool and I'm looking forward to watching you when I get home.
Later this week I actually had another work visit with Elder Holley and that was super awesome. Other than being able to speak English (yes, I still miss it after all the time in the mission) it was so much fun to talk about sports. We talked about a bunch of different sports teams and about some stadiums we've been to. It was fun to remember going to Notre Dame with Dad and you gotta love Touchdown Jesus. For all you sports lovers out there, go ahead and soak up as much as you can for the both of us. I'm looking forward to a long lifetime of sports lovin´. I really liked just talking to him about our stories, why we're here on the mission, and how we know the Church is true. It gave me a lot of strength and I wanted to thank you all for being such great examples to me and letting me borrow of your light until I found out for myself. I love the mission and am so grateful to be here.
Sunday a family bore their testimony about being sealed in the temple and I just about burst into tears. I really don't understand it, I just was touched by the Spirit. I am so grateful that we are all sealed together and am so excited to hear about how our family is getting even closer, and growing even bigger.
So I haven't really said that much about the week now that I think about it, but I guess that's why it was so cool. It flew by and I was just happy doing the work of the Lord. My companion and I get along really well and I love him. It's really cool, because I'm learning a lot of patience as I let go of the little things he does that bother me and focus on all of the big things he does that just blow me away. He's such a great guy and I'm so grateful for every single one of my companions. I have learned so much from them all.
This week we were blessed so much to be able to set up baptismal dates for two amazing families. I have never been given the privilege to baptize a family and now there are two and a third one soon. I really hope I can stay here in Los Rosales I love it here. Now about the third family. I don't remember what I said about Walter and Leonor, but 2 weeks ago she sat us down and said that she felt super pressed by us, she didn't like us coming around so often (only one or two times a week), and that she liked smoking and drinking. Her son was super cool, but just kind of followed her. So we pass by to say hi this week and she tells us that she talked to her son and they want to get baptized in a month or two. Later we talked to Walter and he told us that she said ''no pude aguantarme'' (she just couldn't handle it, she couldn't hold it in anymore, that's the best translation I can do). Well, that was one of the coolest moments of my mission just hearing that and we are seeing so many blessings in this area as we are just obedient and work hard.
I'm super excited to talk to you all this Sunday and can't believe the time is passing by so quickly.

In my reading this week I really liked Alma 61:6 about doing things day by day. Alma 61:19-20 about rejoicing in being burned by someone else, it actually was an answer to his prayer (I love Pahoran). Alma 62:35-36 about how anger destroys us. Then of course our beloved Hagoth in Alma 63:5-8 it was really nice to think about Papa, I love him so much. We finished Alma!!!!!!! Helaman 4:26, read all the footnotes, it can all change in the space of not many years if we don't continue forward in righteousness. Alma 5:6 about how good is good enough. Helaman 5:12 of course is a classic and then 14-20 about how the preached with power and authority. I know we all have the same power and authority and am so grateful to be a missionary.

I loved my mission this week and it was so fun to hear from so many of you. I am allowed to write to whoever wants to write me by email and I'll do my best to respond. I hope your mission was just as good as mine and I'm looking forward to an even better one.
Have the greatest week ever and a HAPPY MOTHERS' DAY!!!!!!!!!
Love your happy son, brother, and friend in Perú,
Elder Aaron Micah Wheatley

Happy Birthday Brianna!!!!!!!

Hey Guys,
Happy Birthday Brianna!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The greatest little sister in the whole entire world. I am so excited for you to turn 16 and scared to death. You are growing up way to fast. I hope you have the greatest birthday ever inspite of all of my fears and that Prom is the funnest thing ever. I had so much fun at all my high school dances and can't believe you are old enough to date...and drive. You are super lucky. Driving is so awesome. Just go ahead and have the time of your life. I love you so much and am so excited to hear how it all goes.
This week was kind of all over the place so I'll get going. A young man in my ward left to his mission (Sao Paulo South with Elder Matthew Woodruff) this last week and that was a really cool experience. He had a lot of people from the ward there as he was set apart and it was really weird remembering when I was set apart. It was cool remembering all the craziness. It feels like so many lifetimes ago and I am so grateful for the experiences I have been given between then and now. I say ''lifetimes'' because I'm definitely not the same person anymore, Jake knows what I'm talking about. I felt the Spirit a lot and was grateful to have another man on the side of the Lord in this great battle. I'm so grateful to be serving with all of my family and friends.
We got to go to an awesome conference with Elder Craig C. Christensen and Elder Waddell from the Seventy. I learned so much and the Spirit was definitely there. It was really cool to just listen to them speak in Spanish and for it all to work out. It's amazing how our brains can change and I am so grateful for that blessing. Change isn't so easy while it's happening, but after it's all said and done, we're better off for having done what the Lord has asked of us.
It was fun to be on the bus because I got to be with a bunch of mission friends. We talked all about movies, 80's music, and much more. It was fun to just joke around and not have to worry about making it to the next appointment for a while. I remember Mariah saying it was so awesome to see all the friends she had made during the mission and I feel the same way. Also, during the conference Elder Waddell said that we are exactly where we need to be and we don't need to think about anything else. I don't love everything about my mission, but I know it's EXACTLY where I need to be and I am so grateful for that. I don't know what the future holds, but I'm doing what I need to now.
We went around looking for service opportunities this week and no one wanted them. That was kind of weird, but we did end up peeling some beans for a member. We got to do some contacting in street clothes on our way back to our apartment and that was pretty cool. I actually really like contacting even though I have to drag my companion to do it sometimes. It's hard for me to get started, but then it becomes kind of fun to get rejected and even better to be accepted. We all just need to raise our voices so people can hear. They are waiting for us.
We had a baptism on Saturday and it was really special. Jhosi was baptized by a member named Michael who only has 6 months in the Church. That was really special and I know it will help them both stay strong in the church. I don't know what's happening right now with the computers, but I'll try to send pictures next week. A little girl was also baptized this week and I had no idea that was happening. Actually, I'm not even sure anyone other than the Bishop was aware. That's Perú for you though. It all went well and it was such a special experience, just as all baptisms are. I'm so grateful to be a part of this wonderful work in helping others come unto Christ. Jhosi shared his testimony and it was super strong. Also the little girl (Yaslyn) had to be baptized 3 times and was shivering in the cold water. She didn't want to do it again, but her dad helped her and that was a special experience.
Yesterday the Zone Leaders called us to pick something up real quick before church. We were wating for ever and then got it. Then we had to wait for the bus. As we were waiting some white people got off and I said ''what's up?'' but they didn't hear. Then one Indian guy came over and asked where I was from. I said Utah and then found out they were from the United Kingdom (London, Wales, and Scotland). It was really cool to speak a little English, but they left real quick. They were missionaries who were here for 8 weeks and it was really fun to think about Mariah.
We had a special lesson with an investigator Miguel. His wife listened to us and asked how she could know if it was all true, especially the Book of Mormon. We explained to her that she needed to ask God and she's definitely on board. That was super cool and I am really excited for what the future holds for them. They are a real great family and things like that make it all worth it.
This week I read in Alma 51:16 that we must first cleanse the inner vessel (Alma 60:23-24 and Matthew 23:25-26). Alma 53:21 first we are taught what is right, thank you so much MOM!!!!!!!! Alma 55:11 those who die in righteousness are happy. Alma 56:44 ''What say ye?'' it reminded me of The Lord of the Rings and I was happy. Alma 57:25 no one escapes life without wounds. Alma 58:34-35 when we don't know we have to give the benefit of the doubt just like Pahoran in the next chapters. It's crazy that we are going to finish Alma soon and I love reading with you so much.
I'm pretty much always tired these days, especially at bedtime. I think that's a good sign that I'm working though. I love you all so much and am praying for you. Have the greatest week ever and I'll be talking to you soon.
Love your son, brother, and friend,
Elder Aaron Micah Wheatley