I'm Not Here to be Comfortable, I'm Here to Work


Well, first off fam, I just want to say I’m sorry for sending such an email last week. Yes, the first week was hard, but I need to stop thinking about myself.  I’m not here to be comfortable, I’m here to work, and I need to stop thinking about home.  May take some time, but I’ll get there.  So this week was a bit of a continuation of some little disappointments.  

This week was the week for sickness. I got diarrhea on Monday. And let me just say, everything in Honduras is different, including diarrhea.  After we ate lunch with a member, my stomach got really weird and I sat in the bathroom a few times. Thought I was good and we left. My companion and me started walking and I discovered things were not good. My companion said we could take a moto taxi, and I’m going to talk about those a bit.  

Moto taxis are three-wheeled pieces of machinery that would in no way ever pass any safety certifications.  They have 12-inch wheels that you would see on a wheelbarrow and somehow they manage to crank the lawnmower engines they have in them to reach 60 miles an hour.  They have a seat in front for the driver with a handlebar and controls and a bench behind it with a sunshade.  Going fast in them is quite the experience.  I don’t know how they don’t tip those frequently because there are only three paved roads.  So often they drive those on dirt roads and the roads are really bumpy and rutted.  They have to weave and dodge all the time. It’s really fun.

Also we ride the bus.  The buses are either large vans, or old school buses.  The school buses are pretty crazy because they cover those in stickers; religious stickers and racing stickers like mopar and brembo and stuff.  And then they stick a nice shiny exhaust tip so it looks nice.  They also throw custom speakers in the bus, and if it’s a nice bus they will have a TV up in the front. The buses are pretty sick.  They just blast their Mexican rap and thank goodness I don’t know Spanish and don’t have to hear the words.  

So anyway, we took a moto taxi and the driver went through every dip and rock possible.  I almost became a true missionary on the ride.  So we stop at our investigators house and I have to use the bathroom. They rent a room and the bathroom has sheetrock walls that don’t quite touch the ceiling and a curtain for a door.  It was quite uncomfortable.  After that night it went away for the most part.  Then I got a cold and I’ve been battling that for the past four days.  But it’s going away.  So things are good right now.

The investigators are set for a baptism date and I’m absolutely happy about that.  It’s the Espinal familia.  Hermana Espinal is the perfect investigator.  She’s nice, she says she understands me, and whenever we come she whips out her Book of Mormon and just actively listens.  One of my concerns was that she never had any questions and I wondered if she was really taking in the gospel. We asked her some questions yesterday about what we are teaching her and she just spit answers out exactly how they should be.  She knows this stuff. I just wish all our investigators will be like this.  You can see the gospel changing her life.  She’s amazing.  

Her husband is a bit difficult because he isn’t very literate.  He has a hard time speaking and reading and I can’t understand a word he says. But we taught about prayer and asked if he would say the closing prayer.  He didn’t want to, but we prodded him and one of our companions, Elder Amazcua offered to help him. So we all knelt and Elder Amezcua told him what to say and he quietly just said it. It was such a humbling experience. But I know that Heavenly Father knows him and that he was listening to that prayer and all my prayers also.

Yesterday was Fast Sunday and we fasted for a lot of things.  Fasting here is difficult because it’s so hot and humid.  I want to drink water all the time. But I made it and as I knelt, praying alone to end my fast, I prayed that I would be able to just forget all things but missionary work. And I felt so much peace. Sundays are really hard because it’s big talks and it’s hard for me to sit and try and focus on what they are saying and so sometimes I get distracted.  And most of the time I think about home.  So Sunday I was a little down. But I said that prayer, and I felt so much better. When I stood up, I had such a feeling of strength, and I knew I could do it and that this work is so much more important.  

So this week is all good.  First week was tough, yes, but I’m over the crying about it.  I know that I can’t speak Spanish very well, but I read a copy of the Liahona that we got and it had so much stuff that helped me this week.  One of the articles was about faith. It said that we have to strive to be the best missionary and teach.  And when we do that we have to trust that what we teach will go to our investigators hearts through the spirit. I have really tried to do that this week.  The spirit is the teacher. I only say the words.  As I learned this this week, it gave me new understanding of Ether 12:27. Weak things made strong.  My weak words in Spanish will be made strong through the spirit.  

I love this gospel and I can’t believe I’ve written this much because I have so much more, but I’ll just say that I’m thankful for everything I have. I never realized how blessed I am and I’m thankful that I was able to learn that. I have so many blessings in my life, and right now I don’t have a lot of them, but I am starting to see the Lord’s hand as I look for those little blessings in everything.  This week I was able to have a shower every morning not from a bucket. And we have a set of investigators set for baptism, what more do I need? I love this gospel and the Lord and I know this is true. I love you all, and hope your lives are going well.
10/14/2013 - Geckos are everywhere!
Elder Ollis

Excerpts from a letter to his dad:

My area is pretty big I think, actually I don’t really know.  All the houses are really small, and it’s very common that they have electricity and that’s it. Running water is a blessing here. We have a big store where we buy everything. Laundry is taken care of by hand and a member washes our garments. I don’t know how to describe everything. It’s winter here but it’s still blasted hot and it has rained a few times. Yesterday our lunch was interrupted by rain ha ha. Also the food is good, lots of eggs, beans and rice, and not much fruit surprisingly. But the oranges here are green and yellow, and so good.  I love it here and I think I’m used to about everything.

10/14/2013 - The frog in our water trough.
The cockroaches are small and I’ve only had to kill two. The only annoying things are the ants. Any open food they get.  I had a whole bag of sugar and had to throw it all away because of them. They got my toothbrush too. And once they see you, they run away and are gone in like a second.  It’s crazy, but everything’s good….. We bought some Tupperware from some guy that walks around selling it so that should help…. Oh, and we had a frog in our water trough. 

Hey keep Elder Stewart Silver in your prayers please. He was in my district in the MTC and he is home now. He was in an accident last week and he was in coma.  His brain has serious trauma and he cannot speak but can respond to speaking a little. His cranium has been removed to let his brain heal and he’s on a long road for recovery. Please pray for him.

I’ll be careful and safe. Promise….. Love you and tell everyone who has written me thank you, I just don’t have time to write everyone. I have to pay to use the computers.  And tell every one that they can send letters too….Love you so much and tell mom not to worry about me. I’m completely fine here. I really have felt people’s prayers for me. Love you and everyone else, but I’ve got to get off the computer now.  It’s expensive!  Love you all!
Elder Ollis

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