Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Greater Love

How are things in Colima? They are great!!!!!!! We are had a great week, and we are excited and happy with all the progress we have seen!
This week, I think one of the things we have seen that is most important is Love.  The Love that the Savior has for us and how we can share it with others.  Something very interesting, and I am sure you have seen, is that people, whoever they are, can feel love or the lack of, in the first sentence you say. 
As a missionary, it is something we have been working on understanding and it has changed many things!  I don't want you to think I have lost the love, but I have realized that I still lack a lot of understanding, with the perfect love that Christ has for each one of us.  So I changed my way of talking to the people.  Normally, I will just share a little of what goes on in my mind.  I see someone and I see them as 2 things... 

1. My brother or sister that doesn't know that they are my brother or sister.  
2. Seeing my brother or sister with our Father in Heaven, happy and with their family, for all eternity. 
It has been great, and to tell you the truth, it is such a success when they accept number  2...  and sad when they don't.  
But, this week a little change. 
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."So, that is what I decided to try and do.  Christ did a little bit different, but every time  saw someone, or taught someone, I started with that thought.... "I would be, and am, willing to give up everything for him/her, in order for them to understand."  It changed a little bit more the way I was going to contact people.  When it was that thought on my mind, my words were a little more chosen.  My way to teach HAD to be what the Lord would teach, and it was worth my life to do or say what my Savior would want me to say.  Now maybe, for you that is basic, I am not sure, but for me to even try and buy tortillas from someone,  that thought would come into my mind...there was nothing that could stop me from trying to teach that person with all my heart, or better, with a heart of the Lord.
I don't know why I am sharing this, but I want you to know it has changed my way of seeing others this week.  I study, I live, I breathe, and work for someone much greater.  I represent Him at all times.  And He would never ever count someone as a number, or another contact. I won't either. 
I hope it helps you guys understand a little bit more of my experience.  Every week, there are so many changes, so many things that happen...I am never sure what to share, but I feel like this is what I needed to share!
I love you. I LOVE you.   I hope you understand that.  I hope you have a great week.  And I hope you know that I love my Savior.  Hope you have a great week!
Love you tons!!!!!!

Elder Goodman
 We painted a caricature....they loved us 

 This is how the caricature turned out...

My friend!!!!

uh....paintings on the wall :)
(He is such a goof!!)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The "game-changer"

I will try to explain to you the wonderful miracles that took place this week, here in wonderful Colima.
It starts with a scripture...
1 Nephi 20:10-11-- 
10 For, behold, I have refined thee, I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.
 11 For mine own sake, yea, for mine own sake will I do this, for I will not suffer my name to be polluted, and I will not give my glory unto another.

We had a week where we have been purified and chosen out of the furnace of affliction.  And we are HAPPPPPPPY!
This week, Elder M came, and he is super cool.  He is from Pachuca, here in Mexico and he plays football. He likes the Saints....and we are working hard core locomotor.
This week, we left excited!  
1st day, we knocked and went to all the planned visits we could...and nobody.
2nd day, we studied and decided to work harder, to contact everyone we could....worse.
3rd day, hard core, we found a few in their houses and we felt super recharged to just teach some great lessons where the spirit was super strong.
4th....2 investigators died.....And I think I will stop there....
Well, the week continued and I will tell you, it was like that the whole week... but it was seriously, one of the most spiritual weeks we have had as a companionship (and only a week). 
The thing we realized is this... Nephi, is using the words of Isaiah in that scripture, and he is talking about preparation.  At the end of the chapter he says in verse   22 ..."And notwithstanding he hath done all this, and greater also, there is no peace, saith the Lord, unto the wicked."
Something WE, together as a companionship learned this week, is how to tell if we were in the right.  We prayed, and begged, to know where to go.  I will tell you, it was with all my heart.  I had worried that we weren't visiting the people the Lord wanted us to visit, but it came to that last verse, 'For the wicked, there is no peace.'  It is a feeling that can't be copied, and that only, ONLY GOD, can give us, that feeling of peace...and that is what I felt at the end of each day. 
I want you guys to understand something very important about this letter.  I am not sharing with you guys, negative things.  These are positive.  Now....we will go to how we found the chosen.
1 day....we found an investigator who decided to be baptized.
2nd day....we contacted 50 people...of these fifty...we found 1 family that wanted the gospel, and they are going to go to church, and we KNOW they will be sealed one day as a family.
3rd day.....we recieved 2 refrences, and both accepted that we could pass by another day, and that they wanted a change.  They wanted to feel PEACE.
4th day....the families of these two investigators who has passed away...wanted to know where they had gone.
It changed everything.  The Gospel is a game changer.  It makes everything good if you follow it, and every thing less if you don't.  That is what I wanted to share with you today.  I learned that there is always a point of everything we pass through.  As every day passed, and I ended with a soul full of peace, I had a stronger and stronger desire to share it.
I know this is short, but I loved this week, and we are EXCITED for this next week. You can't work in this work, and not be excited.  It is impossible.  I love you, I really do.
Hope you have a great week.
Love, with all my heart,
Elder Goodman

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Back to the basics...

This last week was chill.
We worked super hard.  Elder M, well, this was his last week and we made sure he wasn't going to ever think of we worked like crazies. 
The thing I loved was, with Elder M, we went back to the basics.
When you are here, at times, you get the feeling like in sports...that you know the basics and you want to get to something different.  But what we don't realize is..there is no difference.  The Gospel is made of basics and everything else comes when you understand the basics the best.  So what did we do?  We WENT BACK TO BASICS.
We had a goal to get better at something everyday and in the last 13 days of his mission, to get better in every chapter of Preach My Gospel.  We had a LOT of success...for that reason I am not sure how to share everything with you guys...
1. We worked on our purpose.  The thing I loved was that we were, as all people know representatives of Jesus Christ.  So what did we do?  Try to love like Jesus Christ.  The scriptures say that the greatest love is shown when you give your life for someone, so we thought like that.  Before we contacted anyone, we had to think, "I will give my life for him/her."  And I will tell you, it changed everything.  We understood a little more how to teach with love and understand a little more the love Christ has for each of us.
2. In our studies, we always had to leave with something we were going to do better...a goal.  A goal consists of a date and an action.  We did it.  Every day we did it and we evaluated what we did.  It changed our effectiveness greatly.  It is something I love. Every day, I find something new, BUT DO I APPLY IT?   That is the question.  Jesus Christ applied immediately when He learned and that is why He is perfect.  We tried to follow His example!
3. We memorized and taught the outlines of the lessons in Preach My Gospel (PMG). There are about 8 pages of points, scriptures, and topics we teach.  As we memorized, we realized how to teach better and to be better examples in how Christ taught.

We memorized  just the first 3 chapters, but as we changed, we saw the blessings.  The contacts we met with felt something different...they gave us their dirrection and had a stronger desire to listen.
We had the spirit. We had many times when we felt that "tongue of angels" as we taught, and the people said "This is what I had to hear," and we knew where to guide the people. As we led them to scriptures, and they understood "how to fish."  We didn't just give it to them.  Their testimony grew and it was special for us to witness.
That is the focus, to help people have a better relation with their Father, their Heavenly Father.  We did it and we tried to apply what we learned in DIFFERENT ways, in different parts of PMG--for the last weeks with Elder M.   I wanted to share it with you, because it is important.  We can ALWAYS get better at the basics...for me, at least.  Christ was perfect at the basics and perfect at everything else.  So, to be a representative of Him, we have tried to follow.  I think that is the point.  I invite others to find and discover, after I understand. 
I hope this has helped you, not much time, not much explanation.  But I love Preach my Gospel.  I hope you are doing great.  I love you so much.  Apply what you learn:) 
I love you so much!
Elder Goodman!

P.S.  Since Lincoln NEVER sends me pics, thanks to special families in Mexico who remind me what he looks like! haha