Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Another Week

Elder Gustafson and Elder Hendrix with an Elder just leaving to serve in Argentina.
Another week has gone here in Torrejón. Life here is good! We have had kind of an interesting week. We have had the privilege to do a lot of service for ward members. We got to teach in an Elder's Quorum activity about studying the scriptures which was interesting. We taught about how to really learn from the scriptures and talked about at least 7 points of doctrine that we can pull from the first verse of the Book of Mormon. I love being able to be taught from the scriptures by the Holy Ghost as we read. Really having the Spirit with us as we study is the way that we learn through the studies that we have. We then talked about answering the questions of the soul with scriptures. We posed the question "If God loves his children why do bad things happen to good people?" And then gave them 7 minutes to find a scripture verse or story that answered that question. One of my favorites to answer that question is in Doctrine and Covenants 58:2-4. I challenge each of you in your next study of the scriptures to search for one of the questions of your soul or to take the one presented above and look for answers in the scriptures. As we do that with a spirit of humility and prayer we will find answers.

We have also been helping a lot of the Africans here with talks that they are preparing for sacrament meeting. It is really cool to be able to get to know so many different cultures here in Spain. We have Romanians, Africans of all countries, South Americans, Central Americans, and a couple of Spaniards here and there. It makes the area really interesting. I realized last night that we had not taught a full out lesson in Spanish in a week because most of our investigators are African. I love it though and African food is delicious. On Friday we had intercambios with the Elders in Azuqueca and so we all eat together at about 2 o'clock. Later we went to an African lady's house and ate African fried rice with Turkey which was delicious but she brought out a pot of rice about a foot in diameter and just as high just filled with rice that we were expected to eat. We did the absolute best that we could...it was a fun experience until we walked out and my companion threw up behind a car. The next day he was completely out of commission. Good news though, he is better now.

Other happenings from this week, Leo is not really engaged anymore in learning because he needs a job so bad that he can't focus on other things such as the gospel. He needs our prayers now more than ever. I am grateful for your prayers on his behalf. We also have been continuing in our teaching of Felix which has been absolutely great! He is starting to involve himself more and more in the YSA activities here which is super cool to see that transition starting to happen from the missionaries to the ward members. He is really just the coolest person ever! Keep praying for him and his progress. He came to church for all three hours this week!!!!
Anyways we are doing well here in Torrejón life goes well. I pray for you all back home every day!

Elder Gustafson

Monday, November 9, 2015


Put on the whole armor of God - In Sergovia with a "knight."

Felix and Leo came to church! This has really been a great week! It was so great because we just have awesome investigators, an awesome district and my companion is a boss. It was great also because the members threw me a surprise party on Tuesday. It's even greater because the Torrejón District survived transfers with everyone staying. So all said it has been an awesome week to be a missionary here in this time and in this place.

Let's start by talking about how cool Felix is. Felix is progressing really well he has really sincere desires to learn and make the changes in his life so that he can be baptized in December. This week we taught him about the law of chastity and he told us that he wants the Hermanas to start teaching his girlfriend so that they can learn and progress together. On Sunday in Sunday School we talked about eternal marriage and he leaned over to my companion and said I don't just want to get married, I want to get sealed. It was a super cool moment. Thank you for your prayers on his behalf. I know that prayers are answered.

Leo also came to church this week! He has been coming regularly but for some reason he hasn't picked up his phone for the last 2 weeks. He never called us back and so we didn't know what was up. We were worried that he was going to drop us but as we called him on Saturday he picked up and told us that he would come to church this Sunday. He came and we were able to have a long talk afterward about what was going on and help him feel of the peace of Christ. I am so grateful for that peace. Sometimes life as a missionary just gets crazy trying to keep all the people that we, teach, visit, and are concerned about in order but the peace of Christ stays with us as we are worthy to have it.

Life is great in Torrejón. Please keep praying for our investigators.

I love you all!

Elder Gustafson

Surprise Birthday party with members and missionaries

GF cookies at the birthday party

Sword I got in Segovia

(It's really only about 4 inches long and isn't a sword at all, just a letter opener!)

Monday, November 2, 2015

A Love of Spain

Torrejon District in Segovia at the Roman Aqueduct

Cathedral in Segovia

Top of the castle in Segovia Spain
 We have just had the best day here in Segovia today. We went out to Segovia to see the aqueduct and castle that are here. And it’s been a really fun pre birthday treat! (Pictures to come if the bus wifi lets me send them.) 

This week in Torrejón has been a blast! It really has been an awesome week! I got to go on intercambios with the elders from Coslada which was really fun. I went with Elder Aussant who is Canadian and just a great missionary. We hit the streets hard and were able to see some miracle people come out which was amazing! We met a woman from Tanzania who told us that Akuna Matata (from lion King) actually does mean no worries in Swahili, and then accepted a follow up visit to continue learning about who we are and why we are here in Spain. I love intercambios because of the miracles that we see as well as all that you can learn from the other person. During this intercambio I realized that I have been more focused on teaching lessons than I have on teaching to the needs of our investigators and involving the members in the needs of our member not only in the lessons with our investigators. When we make sure to focus on needs we have success and they feel our love because we have addressed not what we want to teach but what they need to prepare themselves for baptism.

We have been meeting quite frequently with Felix this week which has been a real blessing for us. He is an amazing investigator. He essentially has discovered what it means to have a personal relationship with God which will help him immensely in receiving an answer. Please pray that he has the desire and strength to get up and come to church on Sunday after working late into the night.

We have struggled to meet with Leo this week but he decided to come back to church this Sunday for which I am very grateful! He is a wonderful man, I'm sure that I have expressed that before but really he is one of the most sincere people that I know. I am so grateful for the love that I have come to feel for these people here and the love that they show to me. It is through love that I get up every day and keep working for them. I am so grateful to have the blessing of devoting my life to them. I am sure that I receive far more blessings than the little that I do merits but I am grateful for everything that I have and feel here.

I can't believe that once again transfers are only one week away. It freaks me out how fast time is flying in Torrejón. As I have gotten busier this transfer the time has gone twice as fast. I am so grateful for Spain. I am so grateful for the people here. I am so grateful for the experiences that I am having here, the good ones and the hard ones. I love this country. I can't imagine being in any other place or doing anything else right now. Love comes through service. I am grateful for this blessing of love that I receive for the people here from my Savior. I know that through His atonement all will turn out alright in the end, if we harken to his voice and call. I love Him.

I am grateful for and love you all!

Elder Gustafson

 Stained glass windows from the castle in Segovia.

Birthday Week - Elder Gustafson Nov 3
Hermana Kelelman - Nov 5
Hermana Graff - Nov 2
Elder Wade - Nov 4

Another great district meeting.