Monday, March 31, 2014

A house, an old man, and a funeral

Let me just tell you how much I love it here in Mexico. In these past 7 (almost 8!) months, I've felt like I've met so many different people and lifestyles. I've met people from California, Utah, Arizona, Virginia and Wyoming. From Columbia, Argentina, Dominican Republic, and Uruguay. And well of course, Mexico. Honestly, a lot of people when they look at us and go "2 years! Dang!" I'm starting to realize it's not that long. It really is the Best thing I could of done with my life at this point.. 

I don't regret a thing. 

Some stuff that happened this week... 

Building a house 

We've started to go out with this guy to help this one lady construct her house. The only problem is the lady is about as ancient as the Mayan Pyramids, so she can't do anything. For the past 3 years though, she's been living in this house that is literally like if you take the lids off of all the industrial garbage cans in the city, and nailed them all to wooden beams, that are supported by buckets of who knows what, with a dirt floor and a bed... 

I think it's time she has a real house. 

But for some reason the bishop didn't send anyone to help with building her house as a service project, because it's too far away... 

which that doesn't make a lot of sense... 

so we're helping a less active member of the church do it. 

And in the process, learning how to build a house from cement :) 


We went to go see this lady named Veronica who is a less active member we talked to like 2 weeks ago. 
So we go to her house and knock... nothing... nothing... 
Then all of a sudden, this old man walks out in tighty whities with just a mad expression on his face. 

"Hey is Veronica here?" 
"oh no jovenes, she hasn't lived here for a long, long time, and who knows where she went.." 
" well actually we talked to her, here about a week ago, so do you know when we can find her?" 

·short pause·

"you can find her here tomorrow at 8" 

old man... lying in his whitie tighties... didn't stand a chance. 


It's a family here that consists of  40 different people, and none of them go to church. 

But what happened is that one of the oldest members, died this week. So even though we didnt know her, we ended up going to her funeral this week. 

I just sat there, lost in my thoughts the entire time. Honestly, at some point in the ceremony she went from being a nobody, to someone I felt like I knew. My eyes got watery, and I guess I'd be a liar if I said I didn't cry a little. 

but that's okay :) 

because in that moment I realized something. 

I feel like pain is the most common thing that brings us together. More than often, I feel like it's the pain of death. The pain of losing someone that means so much to us, someone so important, that has brought us so much happiness in our lives. 

And it's in this moment of despair we cry out "why would this happen", "why did this have to happen right now.." 

Its hard, and it hurts. I know it does. 

But I also know that this is not faith.. because one day were going to see these people again. 

Of course its hard to imagine seeing someone return to life again, because well, no one has ever seen it since Jesus came down to earth. 

And the people didn't believe that he was going to resurrect either! His apostles were even suprised when they saw him after those 3 days! 

I guess in this I can only share my favorite scripture, which is in Romanos 8:38-39 which says.. 

 Por lo cual estoy seguro de que ni la muerte, ni la vida, ni ángeles, ni principados, ni potestades, ni lo presente, ni lo por venir,
ni lo alto, ni lo profundo, ni ninguna otra cosa creada nos podrá separar del amor de Dios, que es en Cristo Jesús Señor nuestro.
(38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able toaseparate us from the blove of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.)

More than anything, I can just only share my thoughts. I know that this life is not the end. I know the reason Christ came to earth and died, and then was resurrected was for this reason. I ask you guys to remember that too. 
Even if you dont believe in God, at least believe in my words, and I know one day when we both die, you'll believe in him. 

Elder Arvanitas

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