Hola familia y amigos,
Thank you dad for the letter it helped to brighten my day. My p-day is going to be Thursdays so make sure your letters are to me by then! I hope everyone is having a wonderful Thanksgiving! While you are all eating Turkey and wasting away watching football I will be in a devotional feasting on the word of the Lord so Ha!! Just kidding I really hope everyone is doing great and please make sure to send Grandma and Grandpa Hawks my love while you enjoy the ”feast” with them. I love you all so much and am so grateful for the letters and packages. Mom the immunization record was perfect and helped me to take care of that issue so thank you. And the pants were great as well because it’s not exactly shorts weather anymore. This week has been much, much better than last and although I still get major pangs of homesickness every once in a while which is probably natural but they keep us as busy as possible which helps a lot.
Kenzie sent me the greatest package with voice recordings of many people I love saying happy Thanksgiving, cookies, three letters from her and her friends, and a big poster that said happy Thanksgiving! I loved to hear the voices of Patrick, Regean, Karli, Savannah, Serrelle, Lili, and even Stephen even if he was only in the background;) The love and support I feel is so strong and I’m so grateful for it so thanks everyone!!!
Well things here are good. I didn’t know it was possible to feel the spirit virtually every single minute of every single day! It’s been a neat experience and I have grown a lot. Along with my growth I have been humbled. A lot. The language is hard and like most new missionaries I expected the gift of tongues to happen in days. I’m learning that work is required to reap the rewards of that gift. To answer dad’s question I will get to go to the temple once a week on Thursday my prep day. Since today is Thanksgiving the temple is closed so unfortunately I will have to wait until next week to enjoy that experience.
My companion is Elder Petersen. He is very, very intelligent but we don’t exactly have many things in common. Ok that’s a lie we have NOTHING in common but we get along well and it’s funny to me. He’s more of a video game, computer, smart, math type of guy. But, amazingly, it works out great. He took a college Spanish class so he is a few steps in front of me but he’s also been very helpful in sharing his knowledge with me. We get along very well and have already taught 5 lessons to an investigator in nothing but Spanish. It’s funny how quickly you can understand, but how tough it is to say what you want. I’ve definitely been forced to focus on the basics of the gospel. On Tuesday night D. Todd Christoffersen came and spoke to us in our devotional. His talk was fabulous and he thanked us over and over for our service as missionaries. He taught us that we are fulfilling the commandment that Jesus gave to his disciples right before he was killed. That was amazing and a great strength. He also spoke about how to be effective missionaries and gave great advice to work hard but to also work smart and effectively. Stephen maybe you could do this for school;)
I have found out very early that gym time is muy importante. Literally it’s what keeps me going throughout the day because I know that for those 50 minutes I can just be a normal boy and that I can run around to my hearts very desires. It’s also a great stress reliever because I’ve learned quickly that this place works us to the bones. I’m grateful for the challenge but I know that it’s going to be the best, hardest, sweetest, sweatiest, most intense two years of my life! What everyone told me about the high’s being high and the low’s being low has been true. I’ve been amazed that a completely emotionally stable person such as myself can go from wanting to cry, to having so much fun. It’s weird but I’m sure it will just get worse, and better.
This week has kind of been a blur and as my buddy Elder Pham told me the days are slow but the weeks are fast! This is going to be true I can tell because every day seems to drag on forever but now on Thursday I feel like just yesterday was Sunday.
Well how are my Cougs doing? How’s Stephen, what’s school like, how’s indoor, what fun things are you doing? I would love to hear from my brothers and sisters but if you do write I would appreciate letters because I only have 30 minutes on the computer to read and write. So if you need my address see Facebook. Stephen is in charge of it and my address will be up there. Letter’s are like Christmas every day and it’s always fun to hear how and what people are doing.
I love you all so much and look forward to hearing from all you. Know that I’m always praying for you and thinking about you. Until next week!!
Elder Andrew Russell Hawks