Monday, December 19, 2011

Long Time -- No Write

Well, hows it going?  I feel like we haven't really talked in a long time, do you guys feel the same? Well, I´ll start off by answering the questions that I got today.  First of all, yes, Dad, I would like a hard copy of Spencer's talk.  That was one of the most powerful things that I have ever read.  He is amazing.

In all honesty, I don't know when we are going to call.  It kind of depends on what happens.  We are trying to see if we can borrow a cell phone from a member so that we can both talk at the same time.....but we will see.  We have sacrament meeting and that is it, so we will be done at 10 our time, 7 yours.  So, we can call then, or we can wait until later.  I don't really know when is better for you guys....if anyone is online and would like to let me know that would be sweet!  (I´m assuming you guys would prefer that I wait until after your church, right?)  I think I will plan on calling at like.....12 your time?  11 your time?  I don't really honestly depends a bunch on whether we find two phones... just keep your phone handy, and I will give ya a call! 

Mom, I still haven't gotten any Christmas packages, but I think that I should get them this week!  Also, I made a pretty large purchase on my credit card, and a large withdrawal out of my account, if you could transfer money for my credit card that would be great!

So, yep last week I completed 6 Months in the mission.  I can't even believe that I have been out here for 6 months.  It feels like yesterday we were at the MTC, but at the same time it feels like I haven't talked to you guys in about 20 years!  I'll be honest, I'm pretty excited for the phone call.  On Wednesday, (the 14th)  I did an intercambio with Elder Morgan.  We went to his area and had a blast!  So that next morning I was in Madre Vieja Sur.  Our biggest celebration for my 6 Months came that night.  Elder Hall, Me, Sebastian, and Felix went and got Empanadas, and just kinda chilled.  It was super fun.  I love those two kids so much.  They are like my little brothers.  Then, we went back to the house and did the ceremonial tie burning!!!  I was kind of emotionally attached to most of my ties-- and then I remembered this one that this girl gave me once upon a time.  I figured that was a good one to get rid of :) 

But yeah, I really realized this week how much I really do love the mission, and my focus of this weeks e-mail is going to be the things that I have learned on the mission.

Elder Reeder's Most Important Things He Has Learned On The Mission (Not in any order)
1.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only true church- and was restored by the Prophet Joseph Smith.
2.  The Book of Mormon is the word of God, and the most correct book on the face of the earth.  
3.  Jesus Christ is our Savior, Redeemer, and friend.
4.  Prayers are answered.
5.  Families are Forever.

I could stop the list there and that would be sufficient.  But I have learned many more things :)

6.  The true meaning of Love.  
7.  Commandments aren't suggestions- they are the laws that govern the universe.  
8.  We need the Spirit with us.  ALWAYS!
9.  Repentance is an amazing gift from our Father in Heaven.  If someone gave you a brand new Ferrari, you'd drive it.  The Atonement is 1,000,000 times more amazing.  We have to use it. 
10.  We truly only love someone when we care more about their needs than our own.  
11.   Church is more than Sunday from 9-12.
12.  When you think you can't do something, sometimes you're right.  But with the Lord, you can do anything.  
13.  When we testify to people, sometimes we receive stronger confirmation than they do.  Share your testimony!
14.  Family and the Gospel, two things that we will have forever.  
15.  Missions aren't easy, but they are worth it.  

Now some "other" things I've learned:

16.  When your comp says "I gotta go" -- He means it.  (Explanation in the phone call :) )
17.  Don't procrastinate your laundry!  There might not be electricity or water tomorrow!   
18.  How to take a shower with a cup and a bucket LIKE A BOSS!
20.  How to flush a toilet with a bucket of water.
21.  Dad was right when he said, "You're spending money on someone else's wife!"
22.  Enjoy the simple things.
23.  Never take anything for granted.
24.  Sometimes its better just to nod your head and say, "Uh Huh".
25.  Clorox is a missionary's best friend.
26.  When you learn another language, you start sucking at your own.
27.  Never be afraid to share what you believe.  
28.  How to block out Roosters' crowing at night.  
29.  There is no greater joy than seeing someone change their life and accept the Gospel.  
30.  How to be a tight wad.  
31.  Respect the Peso.
33.  Nothing can really prepare you for a mission.
34.  We always have a reason to be happy.  
35.  Sometimes you just gotta sit down and enjoy a Kola Real.  
36.  Bananas in the States have got nothing on the ones here!
37.  Spoons > Forks.
38.  Never be in such a hurry to get somewhere, that you miss an opportunity along the way.  
39.  Elder Reeder has way too many R's for Spanish Speakers.  
40.  Service is a blessing -- not an inconvenience.  
41.  Sometimes, we just need to humble ourselves, and ask the Lord for help.  
42. Who the real Riley Ted Reeder is.  

I really can't even begin to say all the things that I have learned on the mission.  I have learned so many things that I could not have learned any other way, or anywhere else.  I love the mission.  I love my Savior, Jesus Christ, and I love you guys!  I can't wait to talk to you this Sunday!  


Elder Riley Ted Reeder

Also, I just thought I'd let you know I don't know what our plans are for Christmas!  We will probably eat way too much food at multiple members' houses, and then just hang out, Elder Hall and I.  We have a bunch of fun together.  But I feel like I'm just wasting my time writing, when we can talk in ONE WEEK!!!!  YAHOO!!!!  Tell everyone hi, that I love them, and that they are lazy bums who need to write me.  Preferably by e-mail.  Because I just am bad at writing hand letters, I'll be honest.  
Anyway, Don't freeze to death, and I'll try not to melt.  
Love, Riley

Monday, December 12, 2011

Too Busy To Talk!

Hey faMily; I¨m aLIvE; BUT thiS ntERiNet CEntEr IOTN  WOrking:   we are going to try another one; but if i dont write back; i¨m alive and well-we just went to the capital for a conference and came back late:  

Sorry about the last e-mail, I was in an Internet center where the keyboard was less than good.  Well, we went to the capital today to have a mission conference, and we just got back.  So, I have absolutely no time to e-mail.  I just want you guys to know that I am alive and happy!  The baptism was great, and luckily I got her all the way under the water!!!  We actually had a lot more success finding new investigators this week, and I am super excited to see what happens with them.  I´m sorry I haven't responded to questions or really said anything cool for two weeks, but--that's the mission for ya!  No time for anything, ha ha.  But, I want you guys to know that I love you and pray for you everyday.  I'm loving my first December in the mission field, although I will be honest, at times it is a little hard.  But, we really have a good relationship with the ward, and they will just have to be my family for this year!  ha ha....anyway important things:  PHONE CALL or SKYPE.  Today we received the news from President that we can use one or the other.  If I call, it would be on Sunday the 25th.  If I use skype, it would be on Monday the 26th.  I'm really leaning toward the old fashion phone call, just because it is more reliable.  I don't trust that there will be electricity, computers available, and a computer connection good enough to make it worth it.  But, it's up to you guys!  I feel like if we talk Sunday and then e-mail on Monday, that will be best.  I can't wait to talk to you guys, I have tons to tell you guys.  These past two weeks have been crazy, and I just haven't had time to tell you guys about it.  But, I am happy, alive, healthy, and I love you guys!  

Elder Reeder

Monday, December 5, 2011

Praying for the Burt Family

Hello Family,

Well, honestly I don't even know where to start.  What I read when I got online today (that Spencer's Dad, Gary Burt, passed away) was definitely the last thing on earth I ever expected to read.  I had plans to talk about other things--but that event takes precedence over all.  First of all--express all of my love to the Burt family--all of them.  Give them all a hug for me.  Especially Daniel.  I can't even imagine that for him.  From what you said, I can see that he has truly become a man over night.   
I have been writing and deleting, writing and deleting, because I am truly in shock about all of this.  Spencer was always the strongest of all of us, in everything, but most especially in the gospel.  He has such immense strength to stay in the mission, and to do the will of his father, both of his fathers.  He is such an example to me.  All of the Burt family have always been such examples to me.  I just want them to know that I love them, and that they are in my prayers.
I am only going to share one experience from this week because, in all honesty, nothing I have to say seems important right now.  Last Monday night we passed by the house of Agapito, to see how he was doing.  (He has a problem with his head.  Two fractures, and he has to do an MRI to see if there is more damage).  As soon as Elder Hall and I were walking to the house, we both felt the need to give him a blessing.  This was something a little overwhelming to me.  I had never given a blessing in Spanish.  We walked in, started, and asked if he would like a blessing.  He said, "Of course."  Elder Hall did the anointing, and I did the blessing.  But it wasn't me who gave the blessing.  It was from his Father in Heaven.  It was the most powerful experience of my life.  Words came to my mouth, and in all honesty, I don't even remember what I said.  But I know that they were words from a loving Heavenly Father to His son.  
I know that Heavenly Father loves us.  That He is always watching over us and helping us in times of trial.  I know that he will help the Burt family through this.  I know that Gary is in a better and happier place, serving a mission side by side with Spencer.  
I´m sorry this is so short, but honestly I don't feel like talking much.  I just want you to know I feel blessed to know that my family will be together forever.  That this life isn't all.  There is more.  Jesus Christ lives.  He loves us all, and we will live as families forever because of His Gospel and His atonement.  I want you guys to know that I am fine.  Don't worry about me, just do everything you can to help out the Burts.  I love you all so much and am grateful for every one of you.  I hope that this event reminds us that we never know when we will be called back to our Heavenly Father, and that we need to always be living our lives in a way that we will be ready.  Repentance is a miracle--a miracle available to all of us.

Elder Reeder

P.S.  We are getting close to a phone call.  The way it works is I will call with my cell phone, and then you guys will call back so that it charges your phone.  I don't know if you want to look into using Dad's cell phone, or if the home phone is better.  Orange is our provider, and yeah--just something you guys might want to look into.      
Yes, Mom, I am fine.  I just wish I could call up and Spencer and talk to him.... but, I know that the best thing I can do for him is pray and fast.  I love you guys, and I really am fine.  We are going to have a baptism this Saturday, and she asked me to do it.  So, I´m getting my white clothes wet for the first time.  Other than that, I have a super funny story to tell you, but it will wait for next week, or maybe the phone call.  I love you guys.