"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

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Week of February TWO-ZERO: My Missionaries are DEAR-O!

Elder D!

Subject:  I have been transferred ... I am in Coquile, it is by the coast.


Well famlily, this is the news, I have been transferred.  I was not able to get to the doctore yesterday since I left at 8 a.m..  So I am sorry I am not to sure what is causing problems in my leg, so I am praying for the resolve and have it leave really soon.  Basically I have no news on what I am going to be doing about my situation.  I am so grateful for your prayers.  I have been feeling them, I am also just grateful to have a loving family.  Mom, I received the package that you sent and I would like to say thank you so much!

This week was really busy since we were out and about trying to help others.  Elder B------ and I are no longer companions.  We were both transferred from the Three Lakes Ward.  I am sad to say I had to leave but, the ward will be in good hands..  I am also sad Elder B----- and I are not companions.  I am excited though to being in Coquile.  My new companion is Elder D-----, he and I came out together, I think that is pretty cool.

Well, let me think, hmmmmm, okay, so as I was talking about the fact that I am reading the scriptures and studying the atonement to understand it a bit better. The one thing that I really like is the this quote, "The more that you know of the atonement the more you will want to declare the gospel."  I am not sure who said it, I have it written down somewhere.  Anyways, I was reading Preach My Gospel and I studied only the Atonement, it was really really powerful.  So as I read it I came across the scriptures and as I did this the power behind the words hit my soul!   I never can say how the powerful these words could be. 

I miss ya, I love you and you are always in my prayers!


Elder Christian James Delis


Hermana Kate Delis

Subject:  Well, dad, I think I will tell you about my healthy back

Hello familia!  Thanks for your awesome letters!  Okay, well dad said I could talk about my back or my new best friend missionary...I choose back!  It feels great.  No doctors, no surgeries, no nothing!  Yep, all good. :)

Ha ha ha..." Okay, just jokes. :) The new companion is Hermana G-------, and she ROCKS. She's fantastic. Just fantastic!! SHE SPEAKS SPANISH. Let me repeat. SHE SPEAKS SPANISH. Her family is from Mexico, she was born in California, and her whole family speaks in Spanish. She's fluent! In English and Spanish! So we only speak spanish. Well, almost all the time.  She loves the work and just wants to GO. Just do whatever. So we work really really hard. I am so grateful for her love of the work and her ability to REALLY work hard--be diligent. It's so great, and it makes a difference. And she loves the people. I am so thankful for that. SO thankful. Her actions display it. It makes a difference when you REALLY are here to just love the people. Ah. It's so GREAT. I am so thankful for my companion. AH!

I forgot how nerve-racking the first weeks were. They are hard--even if you kow the language. She gets really nervous, and at the start of every lesson I lead a lot. But as soon as the Spirit starts to come in and tensions cool--you know, it's not awkward and everyone in the room isn't thinking about how random it is that these two little girls are hanging out in huge coats trying to read from the Book of Mormon (who the heck is "Mormon"?...ha)--she's comfortable and loves it. She loves studying and she loves planning things out. So we have really in depth lesson plans right now so she feels comfortable. It's been great. :) The hardest thing for her is that she feels like she doesn't know the gospel well enough. Not true. So I just let her decide things about the work, what to do, how to say stuff, and she does, and then it all works out great. Then she realizes she's good at being a missionary. It's fun. :) She IS good at being a missionary. I hope she sees it.

I think something funny about beign a missionary is that a lot of missionaries think there is this one right way to do it. I don't believe it. Be obedient. Study. Plan. Then just go DO. Whatever you planned with the Spirit, just do it. And miracles happen. It's just consistency. Such is life probably.

My favorite thing right now is that she is teaching me how to be Mexican. Haha. For real, I want that so bad. I want to understand the people I teach inside and out--I just want to have a  relationship with them. Ah, it's going to make me cry, ha. It's so hard sometimes to have a language barrier. It can be horrible. I am at a point where I can declare truth in Spanish really well now--I know how to teach the lessons, I know the information, I have a handle on what needs to be said. But Spanish is an incredibly expressive and beautiful language. And we know the gospel is beautiful. I do my job well by declaring--that is why I am here--but I want to have real relationships with these people. I want to REALLY understand them, and I want to be able to express myself in Spanish the way the gospel should be shared. It's so beautiful--I can't think of another word to describe it--and SPanish can explain it in ways that really do it justice. But my handle on the language isn't where I want it. It's just that the more I learn about Spanish, the Mexican culture, I realize how much more can be done in my ability to share the gospel with these people. I know I can do my job well right now, I know I can, but I can do it better. I have a promise in my blessing that says I will have the power to be fluent and express myself in this way awesome language, and I feel like I rarely see it. I feel SO far away. But it will come. If you have tips for what I c an do, tell me!! I want all the help I can get. Pray for me!

Okay, well, I had better get going.  I stress too much. Pray that I can stop that, please. Haha.

Love you lots. :)

Hna D

Week of February ONE-TWO: What's Wrong with Elder D? We Haven't a CLUE!

Elder D!

Subject:  This is Oregon sunshine alright!  Now I know why the Beatles sang "Here Comes the Sun!"


Well, I am very short on time to write today, I will have to be short and to the point.  This week we tracted 12 hours and President Y----- made us promise that if every companionship in each of our zones tracted 12 hours he would take us out to eat.  And we did!  So he will be taking us out to eat!  Sweet!  so we had a good week in doing what we could.  We are getting really good at finding even if it is hard to go and do sometimes.

On Thursday we had a Zone Conference, it was pretty cool!  We were at the church from 7 am to 3:30 in the afternoon.  I will be honest, I was tired and we also got an hour of tracting in too, that was pretty good!  The day was a little long but, I understand the reason that we have the meetings.  The specialist called this week and I have appointment.  I am hoping that it goes well.  Let me think, ummmm...my mind is going off track.  This week was fairly good.  I am just glad I have the opportunity to spend the time searching for those who are looking for the truth.  I am pretty drained.  I will not lie, I am still not sleeping much and that isn't helping.

Well, I love you and I miss you!


Elder Christian James Delis


Hermana Kate Delis

Subject:  Apliquemos nestro corazon para entender (Mosiah 12:27) (The answer is NO, Handy Manny does not teach this in his cartoons and YES, I haven't a clue what she is saying!)

Bueno, familia del typo Delisioso! Haha, that's "hello family of the Delis kind", Spanish-style :) One of my teachers in the MTC called me Hermana Delicioso. Sister Delicious. Weird? Yes. Haha. But now! It's been a yesr since I was there, almost! So crazy. Dad, your email was so great today. I have been thinking a lot about using every minute well, too. It's kind of crazy that I've been inthe field 7 transfers. Just crazy. But something really interesting is taking place in my heart, ha. I'm just changing. Who knows if anyone else can see, but I can. I can feel it. I will be eternally grateful for my mission and for what it gives me daily.
What I wanted to say today kind of falls along that vein, actually. My mindset for the past transfer-ish has been to purify my heart. I just want to be pure inside and out. So my big theme scripture--you know, like my go-to pump-up jam :)--is Helaman 3:35. I love that it says that they got stronger in their humility and firmer in their faith by giving their entire heart to God. I believe that happens. I see it happening in my heart. It's simple, but it moves mountains in me.
A huge mountain in my life has always been that I am a perfectionist. This week, I just decided that I believe in improvement, not perfection. Yes, it happened. Decision made. Haha. :) Today is just not the day for perfection. If it was, I would be Christ. I am not Christ. But I am His disciple. And so I will use the atonement in my life. By letting go of perfection today, I accept the atonement NOW. It's so simple. I don't know why I complicate it. Just because I want to be in control I think. But I don't have to be. I don't have to understand everything. I just have to do what I think is best and allow myself to be corrected. Life is happier asi.
Well, big news, too actually! Haha, this probably should've been the first thing out of my mouth. Transfers are tomorrow, and Hna C----- is going to a new section of the zone, and a new missionary is coming here! I would tell you her name, but I don't know it. She gets into the field today! It's all a very silly story...haha, we got transfer calls Saturday night to tell us what was going to happen, and at 845 we got a text saying we weren't going to be moved and all would be the same. WELL. I felt weird about that, because...well, I don't know. I just knew this was the end of a phase of my mission and a new one was goingto start and I had assumed it would be with transfers. But then Hna C----- and I rejoiced! Haha, we were excited to stay together and make new goals, work hard, etc. etc. THEN after a chain of weird, confused phone calls to our apartment, we learned that that text message was probably wrong, ha. And then President D--- called us to tell us that Han C---- was leaving and I'll be training a new missionary. So ridiculous, haha. I cried.
I just remember sitting in that room when they announce who your trainer is like it was literally one week ago. Oh so weird. And I remember exactly what she is going through allllll day today, and I know she's excited and probably nervous, and she has NO idea what's about to hit her. You think you know before you get here....but you just don't. The mission is so laser-pointed to mold you into a servant of Christ, and your trials are so intimately personal and they just hurt. But you learn. You come out to be better than you think you can be. You do things you didn't think you could. There's this talk called the Fourth Missionary that talks about how the only time the Lord stops asking things of you is when you walk away. So if you are still doing things His way, He will keep demanding things of you. That talk talks aout how you can do things with a willing heart or with a grudging heart. One attitude will change you, one will just leave you confused and flustered. I can't believe I just remembered that talk right in this moment, ha. But it's true--when you give your heart to the Lord, you just change. Before the mission I knew the answers to everything. I had most the knowledge. I was talking to Hermana C----- today and she was talking about what she could possibly say in her homecoing talk--"is it even possible to give one of those and say all that you learned?" And Ithought about that for a little bit and I just thought that I'll probably say the exact same things I said when I left--just preach the gospel of Christ. But I pray my heart understands it all. This morning I read Mosiah when Abindi esta hablando a los judios and he tells them that they haven't understood the scriptures because they didn't APPLY IT TO THEIR HEARTS (Mosiah 12:27). Today I stand as a witness of Christ, and I pray that my heart and mind are humble enough to undestand it. To just live it. The mission is different. There is no time like this ever again because I can't have this time to give everything to the Lord again, but I can havethe results for forever. The mission is so special. It means everything to me. I'm praying hard I can help my new missionary can feel it a little more, too.
Also, I love you! Thank you for your love and prayers. I fee them daily. :) Oh, I got your valentines package! Thanks everyone! :) It was wonderful to get. :)
Okay, talk to you soon!! And check out the mission website in a few weeks! I bet therer will be pictures of our new companionship soon!
Love you!
Hna Delis

Week of February FIVE: Both Missionaries are Plugging Away and ALIVE

Elder D!

Subject:  Well here was the sun ... wow it's winter and sunny in Oregon Now!

Well family, I have no herniated discs and I am still in lots of pain.  I should have gotten a call from a specialist and haven't.

So this week was not hugely exciting.  We are spending most our time finding.  We spent 12.25 hours tracting and talking to people on the street, so that was cool.  We found 12 potentials adn narrowed it down to 8 and one of them Elder B----- and I feel pretty strongly that she will be willing to listen to our message.  She is looking for the answers to some of her questions and we gave her a copy of the Book of Mormon.  We hope to go back on Tuesday to teach her about the Holy Ghost and how it helps ratify the decisions we make in life.  We are praying for the best and do feel like she will find the answers she needs.

Other than that were pretty much busy on finding the Elect.  We are sure they are out there, we just need to find them!  I love ya!  I hope all is well!


Elder Christian James Delis


Hermana Kate Delis

Subject: Mom, you're obviously the one one the far right (I sent my babes a photo that a girl friend of mine sent me a couple of weeks ago from my baptism Open House.)

First, I think my new date for coming home is August 1st or maybe the 2nd.  So I get to party with the birthday-havers!  WOO!

This week was awesome. So so cool. :) We worked our bums off--in all senses: hard work outside in the semi-cold weather, emotionally, spiritually, mentally--everything was hard. BUT WE SAW SO MANY COOL THINGS THIS WEEK!!
1. M----'S PRAYER: We are teaching O----- D------, and M---- is her 8 year old son. O----- was at home one day while we were knocking and she let us in to chat. She's a single mom and she's worried about her kids. You know, the usual. :) We talked, and she just liked listening. SO we came back. And then again. :) We've taught her daughter Ivett who doesn't believe in God, and O----- is reading the Book of Mormon and praying. She is doing so well, family. She just reads it, loves it, and listens. She keeps her commitments. She's just a really good good person. And she we went to an appointment with her on Tuesday and taught the plan of salvation rapid-fire style and gave her a verse to read, pray about, and think about. She said she would. :) And then we asked her son M---- to say the prayer at the end. He was shy, and we talked about how easy it is to talk to God. He was quiet and then said, "okay, I think I have one thing to say." So he started to pray and asked that he could have a dad again. He just started to cry. O----- and her husband are seperateed. So he finished the prayer, and Hna C----- and I had tears in our eyes! It was so sincere and so sweet. I will forever remember looking at him and promising him that God heard him, and that He always does. After we talked about prayer with M----, O----- started to cry. It was so so powerful. :)
2. THE MIRACLE THAT IS U----- L----: So right after O-----, we had this appointment with a man named U-----. He is a hero. :) He lives way far away from where most of our investigators and all of our members live and he lives alone, both of which make it hard for us to visit him. But the night before during planning we just knew we had to find him at 8 the next day. I remember thinking that night, "I don't even know why we are planning this like this"--it justseemed irresponisble. But as soon as I tought that, I remembered something one of the missionaries in the district I'm in said: "if you want to have more faith, do things that require faith." So that's what we decided to do. That night we had dinner with a member and we asked if by any chance she could come with us to our appointment. She said maybe, but then asked Han Bernal (a member that is living with her) if she wanted to go. Hna B----- said sure. :) At this point, we didnt' even have an appointment with U-----, but we had one with O----- right before, so we figured if U----- couldn't, at least O----- would get to meet on of the members in the branch. So she came, and on the way we called U-----. He didn't answer. But then he called us back before the appointment with O-----! And he said that he was just thinking about us, and was hoping he could meet with us soon. We said "that's so great, we were thinking the SAME THING! We'll be over in an hour." :) And so there we were and hour later. :) And guess what! He's reading the Book of Mormon! And guess what else! He believes the message we bring as missionaries is what he's been waiting for for a long time. :) AND Guess what else!! He's totally right. We feel so blessed to be working with him. He is a pretty happy guy. Just a few things are missing. And he is going to feel the cleansing power of the atonement very very soon. Ohhh, I just get so excited about things like this. :) IT was a big miracle that day. And my faith DID grow. What's the best is that Ulises' faith is growing too.
3. HNA B----- THE MISSIONARY: The member who came to these appointments with us got up and bore her testimony about missionary work yesterday. She said that she felt the Spirit so strongly as she went out with us, that she knows this is the work of the Lord, and that ALL the members should go out with the missionaries. :) We asked her bare her testimony after the lessons we had, and she just looked at us and started to laugh and say "I'm not promising anything." She's kind of shy. :) Then when she started her testimony, she just started to bawl and say that she had to come up at tell the congregation about the Spirit she felt wit hthe missionaries. It ROCKED. The members are getting so involved in the work right now, and it's just been fantastic. MEMBERS CARRY THE MISSIONARY WORK. Can you believe that? I just didn't get that before the mission. The longer I'm out, the more I'm learning how to be a good MEMBER missionary, haha. My calling will end, but I will forever be a missionary. I LOVE this work so much. :)

Okay, way way way out of time, haha. Love you lots and I hope your week is great!

Hna D