Monday, November 12, 2012

Elder Wilhelm and I were robbed at gunpoint--really, a pretty normal week. =)

Dear Everyone,

Hey!  I had a really cool week, but nothing huge happened.  We had a Zone Conference, I got to talk with the psychiatrist that created the famous "color code personality profile" (I am, as always, VERY blue and VERY red), and Elder Wilhelm and I were robbed at gunpoint--really, a pretty normal week.  =)

We were only able to get 1 of our 3 new baptismal dates last week.  I'm hoping that next week we'll see more and even more progression from our investigators.  They're incredible people.  Hugo is the one I'm most worried about right now.  He was going very strong, progressing very rapidly...  And then he started to fall off the face of the map.  We weren't able to sit with him last week.  He hasn't been to church in 2 weeks now and he's hard to get a hold of.  Please keep him in your prayers.  We're trying extra hard with him.

I won't leave you all hanging any longer--it's true, I received a training from Elder Hartman (Dr. Taylor Hartman) who is the Mental Health professional for all of Africa.  He's really cool!  I enjoyed the training a lot and learned a ton from him.  I was also able to sit with him one on one for a while.  It was really insightful and taught me a lot.  I'm excited to apply what he taught us to my life and mission.  Just a little tidbit:  100% Responsibility brings options.  Blaming others has the opposite effect--everything shuts down.  4 Steps to Success in Life:  1.  Get yourself.  2.  Get truth.  (As in eternal, pure truth.  Truth never changes.)  3.  Get over yourself.  4.  Get others.  It was a really fun, interesting experience.

The downside?  All my notes are gone.  And my scriptures.  And my backpack.  I also lost chapstick, about 4 dollars, my empty wallet, and our cellphone.  Oh, I was robbed on Saturday, by the way.  We were walking down a fairly normal street and some young guys started following us.  I had the spiritual prompting to stop and start talking to a few people as we walked, but I ignored it.  We were in a bit of a hurry.  If we had, we probably would have been fine.  As it stands, one of the guys came up behind me, grabbed the strap of my bag, pointed a gun and said, "Dá tudo."  (Give everything.)  He was acting all sorts of tough.  We didn't care much, really.  I dropped my bag and they went through my pockets.  They took everything but my White Handbook (I keep it in my breast pocket--it's always filled with money).  They took all of our stuff, ran off, and Elder Wilhelm and I started walking.  We were super annoyed.  We weren't scared; we hadn't been in any danger.  We had been completely calm as the guys robbed us.  As we walked away we started complaining a bit to each other, however.  We lost our scriptures!  That's the worst part.  I've been marking those up like crazy!  But, hey.  We're fine.  Nothing happened.  We got home just fine.  Mom, don't worry.

By the way, if any of you are thinking about missions but aren't sure yet--go.  Go.  I'm telling you, it's the best thing you can do with your time.  It's been the best time of my life up 'til now.  I promise you that you won't be missing out on anything.

Well, I love you guys.  I'm learning tons.  I'm becoming a much more organized person.  And a finisher.  And disciplined.  The change is becoming more noticeable to me.

My best,

Elder Cody R. Eckman

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