Monday, April 29, 2013

April 29

I sometimes don't even know where to start when I sit down to type sometimes. I totally forgot that I am going to be calling in two weeks on Mother's Day. I don't mean this in a bad way, but it almost just feels normal now to just live away from you guys and do what I do all day long. Of course I always miss you guys but I just don't think about home anymore since it doesn't help too. I am hoping in the next couple of weeks though to send home some extra stuff in a box that I have just collected since I have been out here. There was a yard sale a couple house down the street from where we live this week and I got some really cool old church books there for a dollar each! I got a old Hymn book that is a red color and a really old missionary handbook with scriptures in it that they used back in the day.

There were some great things and some bad things that happened this week. Yesterday between 3 different wards we had 8 investigators at church and we are teaching 3 families that are really interested and I think will all get baptized one day. We are still having a baptism this weekend for Edith Rodriguez. Also if you guys still remember the Garcia family that I used to teach in this area and they go to a different ward, they decided to hear from the missionaries in that area after church instead. They are also getting baptized this weekend, even though it isn't our baptism. I am still happy that in the end they are getting baptized.

Ever since I have been in this area I have been praying so hard and trying so hard to get the members active in the week. Well, my prayers were answered this week with one of the stake presidents over the Sharon Park Spanish ward that we cover. They had a meeting with someone high up in the church and let's just say that he is more pumped than ever to do missionary work. My companion and I gave talks in that Spanish ward yesterday and after our talks he stood up and straight up told the members that they need to find people for us to teach, they are to fill up are planners everyday! ha-ha it was a missionaries dream come true to hear the stake president say that. On top of that we finally had someone called Sunday as a ward missionary leader in our other Spanish ward, so we finally will start having support from that ward too.

I have said this before, but I am really happy right now and am so happy with the companion I have right now. We have so much fun together and get along great. I am praying a ton that my companion doesn't get his visa and he is praying a ton that he gets it, so we will see who's faith is stronger... ha-ha. I went on splits with one of the English Elders this week and we thought about going over to my companions house to have dinner with his family, but I just decided to wait until he leaves. I finally got the video from him of when he scared me with a snake after I was saying my nightly prayers, so I will send that to you right now. Tell Robby that I love him and that I hope he can make in another 9 years living in this crazy family. I love you guys and you guys have been amazing lately with writing me letters thank you soo much. Keep it up!

Monday, April 22, 2013

April 22

Dear Family and Friends, April 22, 13

This week I must say felt longer then usually, but it had some great highlights to it. Katie and Blair I hope that baptism goes through this week and you guys are having contact with them every day so that Satan can't come. I would love to hear from all of you guys on how your missionary experiences are going. Since we are already on the subject I just want to bring up that I had the opportunity to hear a fireside this week from Clayton Christensen who wrote a book about being a member missionary. He is a very big guy at Harvard university and is a Emeritus from the quorum of the seventy. I guess the book is pretty popular right now. He really opened my mind up though about the way to share the gospel with others. I got to go up and talk with him after and he gave me his email address and said that he would send me a free book if I tell him were to send it. So I think I am going to have him send it to the house so that one of you there can read it and pass it around.

The biggest highlight of this week was the lesson we had with the Rodriguez family this week. Saturday night we had the best lesson yet with them and the spirit was soo strong! At the end of the lesson the daughter who hasn’t been baptized yet told us that she was now ready to be baptized! So I then invited her to be baptized on May 4th, and she said yes!! If this goes through it will be the first baptism that I have had in the area I am serving in the last 4 months. I did have some baptism in here when I first came into this area, but it just isn't the same since I had no idea who they really were and had never taught them. The Lord is really blessing me right now and the other family that we have been teaching actually went to church this Sunday which is a great sign too!

I just want to end and share my testimony with you all about something that hit me hard this week. Before my mission I can say that I had a strong testimony in the church, but now that I look back it didn’t really have a strong foundation. I believed in Joseph Smith and the priesthood, but I had never really questioned if it was true or false. Since I have been out on my missions I have had lots of opportunities to really question if the things in the church are true and through those questions I have really received my own personal answers about lots of the teachings in the church are true and that without a shadow of a doubt this church is true.

Also an investigator said something to me this week that he is very happy with his life right now and receives lots of blessings in his life and couldn’t ask for more. I really pondered about it and my companion and I were talking about how blessings are very, very important and helpful in our lives, but they are not the big picture. The big picture in our lives is to achieve eternal life and live in the presence of God. Knowing what we know that we must make certain covenants with God, so that we can show we want to follow him and use the power of the atonement to help us return back to him one day. There are lots of things in our lives where we get caught up in those little principles and things that don’t really mean much, and if we would only step back and look at the BIG picture of things then we would be more at ease and realize the things we really need to do and why! I know that through the ordinances that are restored in the gospel that we can obtain Eternal Life and live with God one day. I also know that everything in our lives happens for a reason and that God has his time for everything and already has everything mapped out, but we just need to be patient and steadfast. I know that we can receive personal revelation in our lives and have a personal relationship with God. If you don’t feel strong on a principle in the gospel, study it, pray about it, and I know that you will receive the answer and testimony you want and need. I love you all and hope all choose the right this week. I leave my testimony with you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.


Elder Breinholt

Monday, April 15, 2013

April 15

Que tal?

I can't believe how much is changing back home every single week. It blows my mind and I still can't get a finger around it all. I am always getting emails from people about their mission calls and then I feel like I'm not even going to recognize the house or the people that live in it when I return. The best part about it all is it's only been 9 months! I feel like since I have been out here in the mission it has changed A LOT from when I first came out as well. For example, this last Thursday we just received information on new changes that we will have.

First was about the music rule. We are now aloud to listen to any type of music that is uplifting, not just music by the church. (So that means I will be looking in the mail every day for a CD from you guys with some kind of country music and what not that is uplifting:)

The next thing was the jacket code. We no longer have to wear jackets from conference to conference all winter long. It is now whatever you and your companion decide on wearing for the day. The bad news that we received though was the new policy on gyms. We are no longer allowed to go to public gyms in the morning to work out. So right now my motivation to get up and work out is horrible, but my companion and I have been trying to just get up and go to a church nearby and shoot hoops or something in the morning.

Now it's time for the BIG news that we received. We were informed that within the next couple of months this mission will be a trail/pilot mission for the church. EVERY single missionary will received a tablet (probably a mini I pad) and those will be our new planners! We will also be able to do our area books in them and have a GPS system that we can use. Everything that has to do with paper in the mission will now be done on these tablets. I am so excited and we should receive them sometime in June or maybe sooner. Like I said in my letter last week there are just so many bonuses/blessings from serving in this mission. I still haven't used any gift cards that you guys sent me because every time I try to go to the place and use it somebody pays for us!

OK, enough with that stuff and time to talk about the work this week. I wish that I could explain the way this area was when I first got here, but the best word to use is just crap. My last companion and I did work hard to try to get it going, but we still didn't see much success. But every since Elder Isom has been here its has gotten a hundred times better. This week we put 2 people on date for May 4th, and found someone else while tracking that has a lot of potential. Even though it is a lot better, there are still times where I have no one else to teach or place to go and have ran out of ideas. It is never fun to be in that position for the day and I feel bad for my companion since he is still just so pumped up to teach and always wants to be teaching , I have been doing the best I can to keep us busy.

You might have already heard but I had to go to the MTC for my companion Wednesday and I ended up seeing pretty much everyone I knew in there. I saw Brandon Brinkerhoff, Tyler Hatch, Jason Web, and Troy Hicks! It was crazy to see all of them, and I had a great experience being able to talk with all of them especially Troy in there. That Elder is a stud like always and his Spanish is actually pretty good for just having about 7 weeks or so in the MTC.

I noticed this week especially, that now when I speak Spanish and teach in a lesson I don't even think about the words they just come out. The hardest thing with serving in the states in Spanish is trying to learn more words since I never get to order anywhere in Spanish.

Also before I forget I wanted to tell you about a game that my companion and I are playing where we are trying to always scare each other throughout the day. The other night he got me so bad after I had just finished my nightly prayer and I went to jump in bed and he had put a fake snake in it! He got it on tape and I will try to send it to you today. That is all I can remember right now about this week, but I am doing great! The only thing that could be better is baptism right now which I am trying so hard to make happen. But like always the Lord has a time for it all and I hope that time is soon.

Love you all and try not to refurbish or buy too many crazy things this week. ha-ha I hope you guys are all working on that commitment I left you with too:)


Elder Cory Breinholt

Monday, April 8, 2013

April 8

How's it going party family, April 8,13

This week has felt very long for some reason, but I think the least stressful I have ever felt my whole mission. I can picture in my head all of you guys racing around Disneyland and Knott's Berry Farm all day. It sounds like the kids had a blast though and weren't ready to go back home on the car ride back. ha. I received my new companion Wednesday this week. His name is Elder Isom from Provo Utah! yes Provo, he is waiting to receive his visa so that he can head on out to Argentina. He is awesome and we are very alike and both love golf and fishing! It seems like such a long time ago since I came out of the MTC, but at the same time it seems like it was just the other day, weird right? His Spanish is ok kind of like mine was I guess, but I am trying to only speak Spanish with him to help him out (unlike my trainer). We have both been working hard this week and can see our obedience already bringing blessings in just the first week! We put someone on date this week for May 4 and found 3 new investigators to teach.

On top of it all, the Rodriguez family who we have been teaching for a long time and just needed to get married, went to the Sunday morning session of conference which was perfect for them. There were a couple of talks that were about getting married and what kind of husband or wife you should be. The only bad part was they didn't get any translators and since it is in English they didn't understand much, but I know that they still felt the spirit there. I had the opportunity to go to SLC to attend conference at the Saturday morning session and I sat about 10 rows back from the front! It was awesome! We took the light rail down there and then just walked two blocks up to temple square. Somehow everyone in our group that we went with missed the train home and me and another Elder were the only ones that made it on, ha-ha. I have some pictures of it all that I will try to put up today. I don't know if you all noticed, but there was a bold theme this conference. It was centered around missionary work! Wonderful right! One of the big things about missionary work was the importance of being a member missionary. So with that said, I have a challenge for all of you back home. I challenge all of you in the next 3 weeks to invite someone to meet with the missionary's and have them take the lessons in your house so that you can be a great fellowshiper for them. It would be best if it could be someone that lives next to you like a neighbor so that the missionaries in your area can teach them and then they could go to church with you. I know that you guys have busy lives and all, but if you want more blessings in your life and help with the trail you may be going through then fulfill this commitment I have for you.

Especially for all of you that have served missions you know the importance of it and how it can bless your life. We have a perfect example of the blessings of this work in our family as we have a wonderful sister n law Kristin who is a convert to the church. This work is powerful, real, and is now being pushed more then ever by the leaders of our church. So follow the words of the prophet and be a member missionary, not just by finding referrals for the missionaries which is great too, but be a fellowshiper. I know that you all can have these experiences in your life if you just pray for them and ask the Lord to allow you to have a missionary experience in your life. I can't wait to get these conference talks next week and help the members in the wards I cover so that they can become better member missionaries too. I would love it if you all wrote me about the experiences you have over the next couple of weeks as you try to share your testimonies to others. Maybe for Family home evening tonight you all can have Blair, Craig, and Derek teach you how to come about a conversation with your neighbors and do role plays with you. ha-ha