Monday, July 29, 2013

The Lord is blessing us with endurance and strength


Dear Fam!

What a crazy week! One week worth of events here is like a month worth back home. (Hopefully that makes sense, sometimes I forget how to speak English) But everything sounds like it is going really well back home! I love that you are feeding the missionaries! I gain so much love for the people that feed us here. I am also really glad that you guys are looking for missionary work. Missionary work is the BEST! Never be scared to share the gospel. If you ever have a thought to share it with someone, then do it and God will bless you for always trying to do his will.

It is so cool to hear about other people's mission calls. Tell them that the mission is the best! 

I'm glad Luke is getting pumped up! I must be feeling his energy because I am getting pretty conditioned here in Uruguay. On Saturday we helped a member build his roof so we had to make concrete and take it up to the roof and so I was shoveling for an hour and a half with out stopping! I really feel like the Lord has been blessing me with stamina because I have never worked so hard in my life without stopping. We built that thing very quickly and the members really appreciated our help. We also got some references out of it so hopefully we will get some baptisms out of that. And there have been a few times where Elder Walker and I have to run home because we get out of a charla a little late but we always make it home on time even though we have to run close to a mile. I seriously feel like the Lord has been blessing us with a lot of endurance and strength.

So anyways, keep up the good work Luke, but remember, If you want power from the Lord you need to obey all of his words. That is really cool that you guys have been studying obedience!

So here is an interesting and funny story for you. Last Tuesday Elder Walker and I had to go to the mission home for the Oro conference (The new missionaries). So we had to wake up at 5:15 and take a bus there. So we got on this really crowded bus and I eventually got a seat next to this bigger guy. It was pretty uncomfortable and I was kind of leaning into the walkway but I fell asleep. Every once in awhile someone would bump me and I would wake up a bit but then I would go back to sleep. One time I woke up and there were only 2 other people on the bus. I was kind of confused why we weren't there yet. I thought Elder Walker was right behind me. After a minute I realized that he wasn't on the bus at all and we weren't anywhere near the mission home! So I asked the guy next to me if he knew where the temple was. He told me to ask the bus driver, the bus driver didn't know. So I got off in the middle of Montevideo! I walked a little to where I thought a busy street was and it turned out to be in the Plaza de Independenc√≠a or something like that. I got a taxi and told him to take me to the Temple in Carrassco and he took me there. I tried to teach him the gospel but he didn't want it.  Anyway, it cost me 300 pesos ($15) but I made it back. Elder Walker was out with another Elder driving around all of Montevideo searching for me frantically! He felt so bad! It turns out that he shook me and woken me up and then walked off the bus and then turned around and I wasn't there! I remember being woken up but I looked up and I thought this women had just bumped me so I went back to sleep. 

I have another story but I might not have time to write it! I have to write the President. Maybe I will write it after that. But it is basically about good, better, best and how the Lord blesses us when we choose the best!

I love you guys! Give Besos to everybody for me! 


Dad!

That is such an awesome story. (Daniel is talking about the story Dad told him about the tree branch almost falling on him) I truly believe that when we are close to God we can have such awesome experiences with the spirit. It is crazy to think about how much God loves us. I am also glad to hear about your portfolio. Yet another blessing from God for your service.

I love receiving your emails so keep it up! I love you so much! I am so blessed to have a Dad that is so hard working and so close to the Spirit. You and Mom have taught me so many things that help me so much out here.

Love,

Elder Lacey


Monday, July 22, 2013

First Baptism


Dear Family,

So, first off the Zone leaders said that I received a ton of letters from people today but I haven't been able to get them yet and I am only allowed to read them on P-day. So hopefully I got everyone's letter. I still haven't received the package with the 4th of July candy but I might get all of that with the letters.

Anyway another week down! I really feel like I am getting everything down now. Elder Walker and I have been able to teach some really good lessons! I feel like my Spanish is getting a lot better. It helps that Elder Walker helps me out so much. We will be sitting in a lesson and then he will stop talking and look at me and I will have to carry on the next part of the lesson. It keeps me on my toes! But it really has helped me learn a ton. 

So this past Saturday we had our first baptism in the area! This area has only had one baptism in the past year so Elder Walker and I are working really hard to change that.  

Elder Walker said that this baptism was one of the most chaotic baptisms he has ever been a part of. We worked so hard to get everything set up perfect for R_____. We spent a lot of our time just trying to get hot water for the font. We ended up getting everything to work even though it took some time. We also had to set up the whole baptismal service. Well, everyone showed up like 10 minutes late and then we couldn't find the Bishop and R_____. We then found the Bishop giving her an interview! We had no idea what was happening but we waited it out. They came out 20 minutes later and R_____ was crying. We thought the baptism wasn't going to happen. The Bishop talked to us and said that R______ had some things that she felt like she needed to clear up before the baptism but he felt like she was really repentant so we could go on with the baptism. I'm really glad that she actually wanted to clear things up before the baptism but it almost gave us a heart attack!  It just shows how awesome of a person R_____ is. She really wants to do whats right. So anyway, we went on with the program and everything went well. R____’s family came even though they don't want anything to do with the church. But don't worry, we will baptize the mom soon. I can tell.  Elder Walker and our 2 house mates, Elder Ve'e and Elder Pyper sang ¨"Mas Cerca Dios de Ti" and we killed it! We had practiced a bit so we harmonized really well. My singing is actually coming along quiet nicely. After we sang R_____ got baptized by the bishop! There was actually a good amount of members there supporting her. After the baptism we sang songs and then a bunch of people got up to bear their testimonies. It was good but we went way over time. Everything turned out well! It was a long day and there was a lot of work that we had to do but it was worth it.

We 4 missionaries get along super well though. We like to sing a lot and we are all good friends. We all like to work hard! We have been finding a ton of new investigators but it has been really hard for us to get all of them to progress. We had to drop one couple which was really sad. We met with them a lot and I thought for sure they were going to get baptized. They believed in everything we taught but they would not get married. He said he believed in God and he believed in our message and he knew God wanted him to get married but he would not get married. He absolutely refused. We tried everything but he wouldn't budge. It was really sad but I think he might change his mind one day.

I love you guys! I am sending another letter today so look for it in a couple weeks! I have to go! Keep me updated on everything.

LOVE

Elder Lacey




Monday, July 15, 2013

Have Faith - Expect Miracles


Dear Family,

Thats good that you got my letter! I got the package with the cookbook but not the package with candy. But the cookbook is good! I love cooking but we have limited ingredients here so its tough. I would like the meatloaf recipe because I think I could pull that off and shepherds pie would be great! But other than that recipes with simple ingredients would be much appreciated. Although one lunch Elder Walker and I made a pizza! There is a store that sells pizza crusts near by. Other than that they sell flour, salt, fruit, meat, and alfajores. Just the basic stuff. 

Elder Walker is so sweet though! He reminds me of John Gabrielsen! So, we have been doing pretty good work here. One of our investigator couples is German and Stephanie and their little one year old daughter. But they are pretty much like members because they have been helping us so much with our other investigators. The missionaries before us were walking down the street one day a couple months ago and they saw German barefoot digging in the trash looking for food for his girlfriend and their daughter. They taught him a few times and then we came in and took over. He is a completely changed man now. They are getting married the 8th of August and then getting baptized after that. It is amazing how the gospel blesses families. He is the coolest guy though. He always wants to help us.

Our first baptism is this Saturday! Her name is Romina and she is golden! She believes everything and has applied all of the gospel principles in her life. I am so excited for her to be baptized! 

We do experience a lot of disappointment though. Especially when we think we are going to have 8 investigators in church and only 4 show up. We have been teaching this couple and their 2 young daughters and they want to get baptized but he refuses to get married to her. We can't figure it out but I think it will all be worked out in the end. 

I have been thinking a lot about Faith. I might have told you this already. But one day I was thinking, “Man, I want to be able to have miracles happen. I want to be the type of missionary that God can work miracles through." But then I thought that is probably really prideful to think. I shouldn't expect miracles. But then I thought "No, if I do what is right and work my hardest I can expect miracles." With enough Faith and with enough work the Lord will work miracles through us. So, Expect miracles through your actions. Have Faith.

It has been cold here! We have a thermometer and it said that it was 40 degrees Fahrenheit in the house! We all believe it too. We always have to be bundled up... But maybe the thermometer is off haha! But its ok because we are always playing Christmas music here so the cold weather helps us think that it is Christmas time. 

Sorry for all of my spelling errors and stuff. The keyboard I am using is super sticky and the monitor is blurry so it is hard to catch my mistakes. Plus everything I write is underlined in red because I am writing in English haha! Feel free to correct my grammatical errors.

But I love you so much! I will try to write a letter to you guys soon. There isn't much time ever. I will also look for that package with CANDY! 

Love!

Elder Lacey

PS I love hearing about the rest of the family. Tell everyone I love them. And keep up the good work Luke. I want you to be able to beat me up when I get back!


Dear Padre,

It sounds like everything is going well up there! It is crazy to think that you are almost done as a Bishop. Before you get realeased I need you to do me a favor. Get the ward pumped for missionary work! Now that I am a missionary I see how much the members can help. I always thought the missionarys can do it all on there own and the only job the members have is to feed them but I was wrong. I love the families that really try to help us. Shoot, I love anyone who feeds me haha! But Elder Walker and I are always looking for members who can come with us to teach investigators because it helps the investigator so much! It gives them a friend and they can learn the gospel from another point of view..... Go give the missionaries food! I didn't realize how much of a difference it makes.

But I am loving it here! Time is already flying! I am learning really quickly and I get to teach a lot. I feel like the area I am in is similiar to some of the areas you served in your mission so its really cool. I could be wrong though.

Today I worked out pretty hard and then we go to play a little bit of basketball so I'm getting my exercise in. To bad I'm constatly hungry though. haha! They say you get used to it after awhile though. I think I'm going to go home and buy 30 eggs and just eat those!

Anyway I love you Dad. Keep up the good work! I will write you next week.

Love, 

Elder Lacey



Monday, July 8, 2013

Elder Lacey's first week in Uruguay


Dear Family,

I'm in URUGUAY!! Can you believe it! Man, I have so much to tell you and not enough time to do it. Anyway, my area is Aeroparque! (I think thats how you spell it) It is super close to Montevideo but it is not like the city at all. Our area is straight GHETTO but it is so awesome! I want to take a bunch of pictures for you guys but it has been difficult because 1) I haven't had any time 2) I would get mugged if I had my camera out ;) and 3) I can't even upload the pictures on the computer that I am using because it is so old! 

So I guess I will just run through some events that have happened. We woke up at 3:30 a.m. last Tuesday and said goodbye to everyone and went to the airport. We had the shortest flight that I have ever been on and then we landed in Montevideo. They took us to the mission home and taught us some things and gave us lunch. We then went out and proselyted with a random missionary that we were assigned to. It was sweet because it was my very first glimpse of the Uruguayan streets. Elder Rosales and I went and taught a lesson in a very poor part of Montevideo and when we got out we saw some other missionaries so we stopped and talked to them. It was so cool because I was just standing there looking around but I felt like I had been there before. The more I looked around the more I realized that whenever I thought about my mission I saw the exact view that I was looking at. The spirit testified to me that this is where I was supposed to be, in Montevideo, Uruguay on my mission. There is no other place that I would be. But we were standing on this long stretch of grass with a creek in the middle of it. There were a bunch of long, beaten up bridges that went across it and the creek was the nastiest thing I have ever seen. There was a ton of garbage in it and it was green and brown. I also saw a sheep down in there eating something. But anyway, I knew that is where I was supposed to be. 

At the mission home they fed us very well and they taught us a lot. We stayed there for the night and then we woke up at 6 in the morning to go get blood work done for our visas. We were there for a while but then we finally got to meet our trainers and find out our area. My trainer is Elder Walker! He is such a capo! (Capo- boss, cool guy, hard worker... it just means a great missionary) Anyway, we went to our house which is only 20 minutes away and I had 5 minutes to put a few things away and then we got to work. We are in a house with 2 other elders and we get along super great! I will talk about them all later. But our house is good. There is a lot of room but it is pretty dirty. There is a lot of mold everywhere so we are going to clean it all today. Our shower head also broke so we have been showering with a bucket! haha It’s awesome. But don't worry about anything. Everything is good :) My area is huge! Everyone here is really humble though so Elder Walker and I are doing work! We already have 4 people with baptismal dates. The hardest part is keeping track of everyone that we need to talk to everyday. There are still a lot of things that I need to learn but I feel like I am learning pretty quickly. Elder Walker is seriously one of the best teachers of all time! He makes me take the lead a lot so that I can learn and he also tries to speak in Spanish always so I can learn quickly. I am so pumped to be out here!

The hardest thing is probably the food situation. At the mission home they gave us a sack lunch and the next time I ate was lunch the next day! haha! We never eat dinner here but Elder Walker likes to cook pancakes in the morning! So we usually have that everyday...Except today because we ran out of gas! But the food here is soooo good! I have eaten at 3 members homes and they have been feeding us well. The other missionaries say that I am really lucky because I have been having the best meals ever such as Asado.

It sounds like Luke is doing really good at everything! Keep it up buddy! Say hi to Ray Ledesma for me! In fact, Say hi to everyone for me! I forgot that I have to write the president! so I better hurry. I love you guys so much. I am so pumped to be on my mission. It is a lot of work but I can already see the blessings that our investigators are receiving. It is so good to see how the gospel changes lives. Next time I will tell you guys about German y Stephanie. 

LOVE!

Elder Lacey

Letter from Elder Lacey's Mission President on July 6, 2013


Dear Lacey Family,

            Tuesday we went to the airport in Montevideo, Uruguay, to pick up Elder Lacey and welcome him into our mission.  He arrived full of excitement and enthusiasm to get to work.
            We spent the day getting to know him, and we recognized that he will be a great asset to us here in the mission.  We know that he will bless the lives of many wonderful people.
            Wednesday was transfer day and after meeting with his trainer, he headed off to his first area so that he could start ¨ [bringing] to pass the immortality and eternal life of man¨.
            We are now sending you a photo that we took with him.  As you can see, he is extremely excited and ready to start.  We are so excited to have your son with us and hope that you receive this photo with excitement and pride in all that your son has done to prepare himself for the opportunity that he now has to serve the Lord for the next two years.



                                                                 Love,
                                                                 The Armstrongs
 
Elder Daniel Lacey with President Armstrong
Elder Lacey with 27 new missionaries in Uruguay!!


Monday, July 1, 2013

I'm going to go Harvest!!



I don't get much time on the computer but I am flying out of here at 6:55 tomorrow morning! Entonces, we have to wake up at like 3:15 haha! I love it. The CCM has been so awesome! I believe my P-days are now on Monday so that is when I will write you next. Its time to go to work!
I love you guys!
Elder Lacey