Monday, March 31, 2014

Cartago Costa Rica 3.31.14

Hello Everyone,
It's been a hard and long, yet very rewarding week. On Wednesday I became crazy sick. My head felt like it was literally about to explode. It was the worst feeling I have ever experienced. My muscles ache and my voice is gone. But i understand why I experienced that. I've been wanting to understand more about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. As I sat in my bed that night I was pondering to myself. I thought of the Savior and how He suffered for every sin, sickness, hurt feeling, etc. I was impressed in my mind about if I'm just one missionary with a crazy bad headache, what did He feel as He suffered from everything. To me it was a real eye opener on how little we know what the most important event in history. I was about to ask for relief in a prayer but I thought to myself. If the Savior suffered all that without relief I can handle this too. I felt a tender feeling in my heart. I felt that it was prompting to ask anyways. So I did. As the pain was relieved I understood that choosing to not ask for help is like saying, Thank you for suffering for nothing cause i wont use it. Now I'm constantly trying to find ways to use the Atonement more fully in my life. Besides that experience I don't remember that day much.
I have had one baptism named Allison age 13 in Proyecto Manuel de Jesus. The baptism of Marcos fell through because we found a full pack of cigarettes on his bed
The language is becoming easier. I understand a majority of what is being said. But I have noticed that my understanding increases the harder and more focused I am on the work. Here's a trick ladies and gentlemen. When you do what the Lord commands you prosper in the land. HAHA. Go figure. Thanks Nephi.
I started working with members lately. They love me! My companions.... not so much. I'm working hard and we have an exciting week coming up.

Siga Adelante,
Elder Neider

PS Doritos. Yep that's all I can think of right now. I'm sending the SD card home today BTW.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Cartago Costa Rica 3.24.14

Thanks for sending the Line of Authority. HAHAHA Wherever you go- There you are. HAHA thanks Dad.
So I had a cool run in with the Gift of Tongues earlier this week. I woke up a basically re-enacted the beginning part of Bedazzled when he wakes up and can speak Spanish. I had the music in my head the rest of the day. No se if thats actually Gift of Tongues or not. But my companions told me where the library was regardless.
HAD MY 2ND CONVERT YESTERDAY!!! I say second because it was my first convert.
We would've had 2 but Marcos drank some coffee to wake up for his baptism. Facepalm.
We couldn't find the key to the font so I had to jump over the safety glass to unlock it from the other side. haha I almost biffed it. THE WATER IS FREEZING.
I didn't bring a towel because I thought that one would be provided. But I received a tender mercy. I walked into the bathroom and as I was changing I recognized that my garments weren't wet. As I slipped my regular church pants on, my legs became completely dry without wiping my leg on the pants. I don't how to describe it well. But I felt like it was a "good job" said from My Heavenly Father for bringing one into the fold. My joy was great.
I do need some advice. I see the blessings of being an obedient missionary. In the CCM (MTC) Hermano Turner said,"I was not a perfect missionary. But I knew that I could be a perfectly obedient missionary and love perfectly" Thats what I want. But I have to have a companion who shares my enthusiasm for obeying all the rules. How can you talk to your companion about being more obedient? Or telling them, "Elder we shouldn't be doing this".
I do it as humbly and as nicely as I possibly can. But they still get upset at me for trying to receive all the blessings I can. I NEED THEM!! haha.
I've been quite frustrated lately with the language. Church is a killer. I listen to Spanish all day and understand about 40%. But church is 2 hours of straight ldkfja;lsdkfja;lsdkfja;ldkjf;lasdkjf;laskfj after Sacrament. I got the worst headache.
Yesterday I gave my first talk in church. I forgot my written talk at home. Facepalm. So the Spirit gave a talk for me. As it should be.
The Word of Wisdom is the most frustrating thing in Costa Rica by far. In a wonderful home of investigators we've been visiting, a man named Michael, a brother-in-law, had a beer in his hand as he began asking us about the church. I was first bothered by this because this home had 9 kids running around all under 6 years old. I shrugged it off until we walked in the kitchen and I saw 6 other empty beer cans lined up on the counter. I realized that the only responsible adult in the house at the current time of 9 children, was drunk. I did not feel Christ-like love for this man. I have taught this family for 3 weeks and he had the nerve to get drunk when it was his responsibility to watch over them. In the middle of our discussion he picked up his 2 year old son with one hand and with a beer in the other, began to accidently pour beer in the childs hair and he tried to take some drinks. He never figured out how to hold both and even set the sleeping toddler on the ground rather than put the beer down. My heart felt a different kind of sorrow.
Other than that things are going great here. I miss you all and can't wait to get back. Skyler hit his 7 month mark last week. He says it goes by quick. I wouldn't give up this experience for the world.
Siga Adelante,
-Elder Neider
PS I finished Jesus the Christ this morning. Phenomenal.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Cartago, Costa Rica 3.17.14

All is well in Costa Rica. I love the people, the language is coming, and we just started working with the members. This week was a little frustrating I'll admit. On Thursday I didn't understand a single word and I started missing home. I read a talk in my Costa Rica Mission Plan that the President gave us called Lock Your Hearts by Spencer W. Kimball. It talks about, you guessed it, Locking your heart.
It talks a lot about "an eye single to the glory of God". It doesn't directly say that but thats the take home message I received. I was focusing on other things. Especially the language. I was focusing so much on what I wanted to say or how I was gonna say that the Spirit didn't have room to give me what to say. After reading that talk I simply just had to "open my mouth and it was filled".
Distractions such as thinking of home, people, plans or what life will be like when I get back, and even the language were preventing me from moving the work forward. But once I decided to lock my heart, everything started falling into place.
Today we were suppose to go hike a volcano, but instead we went and dropped off a package in San Jose for Elder Gomez. Oh well.
Elder Gomez is from Honduras and Elder Estrada is from Guatemala.
I'm still figuring out how mailing works so I won't be sending an SD card home for a little bit until I know for sure.
Happy St. Patricks Day! They don't celebrate it here.
There is no such thing as modesty here. The other day we were teaching a less-active member named Jessica and let's just say her shirt keep falling off. So I stared looking at the floor and she got upset at me for not looking at her when shes talking to her and vice versa. I played the Gringo card and simply said "No entiendo" (I don't understand) and continued looking at the ground.
So it also turns out that the bites aren't really bites. I think. Ayelcia said it had to do with the heat and gave me an ointment for it. Not helping. So whatever it is its only on my arms and hands. Oh well.
My favorite thing is handing out copies of the Book Of Mormon. (BTW thats the correct way to pluralize The Book of Mormon. Not Books of Mormon or Book of Mormons.Its copies of The Book Of Mormon).
The last two days have been Stake Conference. The Hastening of the Work program just got here. Super exciting. On Sunday we watched a telecast from Salt Lake to the Central American Stakes of Zion. James B. Martino, Bonnie Something in the Young Women's General Presidency, Richard G Scott and Dallin H Oaks spoke. Elder Scott and Elder Martino actually can speak Spanish so they did. But Elder Oaks and Bonnie were voiced over. Anything else interesting happen? Got attacked by our Land Lords dog Lula. The lights weren't on so she didn't recognize us. My calf kills.
The only I need sent is if Dad could send me an email of our Line of Authority. It actually comes up more than iI thought it would.
Also, send Sydney Edwards a message on Facebook saying she promised she would write. Best friend indeed.
Anyways that all for this week I guess. Love you all.
Siga Adelante,

Elder Neider

Monday, March 10, 2014

Arrival to Costa Rica 3.10.14

Hola from Costa Rica!
Where to start?
So we got here last Monday and the President Wilkinson took us outside the Costa Rica San Jose Temple and told us about obedience and hard work. It was fantastic. President Wilkinson is a major Utah Ute fan and we trade of jokes all the time.
Pres. "When Christ comes again, what will He be wearing?"
Me: "Celestial White. Cougar White"
Pres: "And Crimson.Where in the scriptures does it say He will wear Blue?"
Me: "You're right President. Jesus is a Utah Ute. His teaching the Gentiles. Going about His Father's business."
Then I gave him a scripture reference about Christ eating with Publicans and Sinners. "Why do the healthy need a Physician, but they that are sick" Boom!
Before I forget, look up the talk by Elder Bednar called the Character of Christ. It was my last movie in the MTC and has quite possibly changed my life.
We woke up the next day after sleeping in the secretaries apartment and went to the Mission Office where we sat and waited to be interviewed by the President. The bus full of Latinos came in and 20 missionaries from the Guatamala MTC joined us. We arrived at 8:15 in the morning and I was interviewed at 7:20. Elder Miller and I went for occasional walks just to see at little of the city of San Jose.
The next day we all went to the Casa de Presidente where we ate and hung out for a little bit. Eventually we all got our companions and our assigned areas.My companions are Elders Estrada and Gomez. Neither speak much English. It's such a blessing. I'm learning Spanish so quick!
We have been assigned to labor in the area called Cartago. Our house is located in Cocori though. We currently have about 15 investigators, but we keep getting more spontaneously. Next week I will baptize two people. Allison and Rafael. Their Mom is a member and asked us to come over and couple weeks ago. I got here and I love their family. They have 8 kids. The oldest is 22 years, then 18, 17,15,13,8,5, years old and the baby has 4 months. Through talking with Allison and Rafael, Flori (17) wants to take the lessons now.
I have been destroyed by the ants here. When I sleep they come in and bite SO MUCH. i thought it was a good idea to wear my hoodie to prevent them from getting in. NOPE!! It actually prevented them from escaping. I woke up with 40 new bites. They itch like crazy.
At the Casa de Presidente, I got super sunburned tambien. My forehead has been peeling.
I love it here though. We are doing a lot of good here. It's fantastic! I miss home and my friends, but I wouldn't give this up. It's perfect here. My new favorite song is called "Savior, Redeemer of My Soul".
I don't know what else to say. Please continue sending questions. Love you all.
I know that the work of member missionaries is real. The Lord is hastening His work. I heard something that was kinda cool in the MTC. "Maybe the reason the work is being hastened is because their has been enough work done in the temples that our ancestors are screaming across the veil for every member to now go forward and bring their loved ones to the Truth."
If you are reading this I want you to think of someone. Non-member, less active, non active, someone, and find ways to serve them. Invite them to Christ. It's not enough to have the regular missionaries out here by themselves. EVERY MEMBER A MISSIONARY.

Siga Adelante,
Elder Neider

P.S. I receive mail once a month. The address is in My Call Packet. The mission office I think. Also, don't use FedEx. It gets held hostage at the airport. 

Monday, March 3, 2014

Voicemail 3.3.14

This is the voicemail that was left on my phone today (3-3-14).  He didn't tell us the exact day he was leaving for Costa Rica.  I was on the other line when he called from the Atlanta airport.  He says some pretty sweet things and didn't chew me out for not answering the phone.  I guess I have to wait until Mother's Day now.  Boo-hoo!


Letter 2.26.14 - Provo MTC West


So today is my last P-Day in the MTC. We got our Travel Itinerary on Monday. I don't have it with me so I can't be super specific on when and where. I should be able to call once we are in Atlanta. We wake up and have to get in the bus to go to the airport by 4:35 am. We go from SLC to Atlanta where we will have 2 hours to chill out there. I might be able to call during that time. From there we head straight to San Jose. 88 degrees there right now. 
In the MTC I've seen a lot of people that I know. Brendon might want to know I saw Hermana Metler here. Also W. Craig Zwick of the Seventy shook my hand after a Devotional and said that he had just got back from a trip where we ate lunch with a one President Michael A. Neider of the Las Nevada Mission. Pretty cool. 
The only Apostle that came was Jeffrey R. Holland, but we only heard him for about 5 minutes as he introduced his son Matt Holland for a Devotional. Matt is the President of UVU I believe and he gave an incredible talk on Joseph Smith. 
To anyone planning on serving a mission: Sing in the MTC choir. Your testimony will grow. The conductor reminds me of Mr. Wilcock from PG. He tells the back story of the song we sing and it is profoundly spiritual. 
I love my Home Teaching family, The Warners, so much! Their love and support is awesome. They send me packages from time to time. GETTING PACKAGES AND MAIL IS THE BEST FEELING IN THE WORLD!!!! Luke thank you for the $5 from a week or so ago. I love getting letters from their family. I plan on bringing some souvenirs back for each of them.
Life is winding down here at the MTC. I love my district and I hate saying goodbyes. My teachers are incredible.I have the greatest mission in the world. 
Tell Corbin to start writing me. I had a dream about him the other night and I miss him lots. We were both on a train heading out to our areas in our missions. The dinner costed $98 a plate for some reason unless you had the MTC meal card. Corbin came around the corner and asked for money because he lost his card. I got upset like I used to but I felt the it change in my dream. It started out as getting upset, but then switched to love and charity. In my dream I remember feeling that I missed him. He handed me what appeared to be his MTC meal card. It had his picture on it but the name written on it was Sosmeyer, Oil. So he told them a fake name when he got here and that's the one that got printed. He smiled at me like "Funny right?" and did the Harley Quinn pose as he elbowed my like "You know what I'm saying?" Random I know. But I love that guy. 
Could you send 2 more Gym/Excercise/ P Day shirts? That would be great. idk. 
Also the lyrics to the choir songs called "Warefaring Stranger" And "Prayer of the Children"?
Warfaring stranger is not the same as Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief. However the one I asked for is in Joseph Smith Prophet of the Restoration. Tim might know.
If someone is wanting to send mail either what of the Costa Rican Address or send it so it can get here by Friday. I love letters. So I don't want any of them to be left behind. 
Thanks for all the support. I love you all.
-Elder Neider