Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Yup- September 28, 2015

Querida familia,

Yup, this is it.  My last week of service as a full time missionary.  It all feels weird and coming too fast...  it took forever to get here and now I feel like Im out of time!!  I dont like this feeling, make it go away haha.  I went yesterday to say goodbye to Canto Grande and also set up a get together tuesday night with the members and my converts.  Itll be awesome. :)  Wasnt as sad as saying goodbye to progreso, but even so many of my best friends and familias are there, so get excited to meet them, eat exotic animals and plants (mom likes potatoes so shell get to try a special potatoe here called tokush), hang out, and play futbol too!!  GET EXCITED!!  

This last week, just my luck, room revisions.  I was hoping to not have to clean my room before I go hahaha.  Its so hard to teach too becuase everyone just wants to talk about how many days I have left or they want me to take them to Las Vegas.  Hmm, hey dad do we need any housemaids or babysitters or yard service?  Ive got a list of about 250 candidates if youre interested.  All they need is 250 visas, a plane ticket, and 100$ each to get started.

Welp, not much to say, just excited to see your beautiful faces and smother you in the biggest, wettest, sloberyest kisses and tackle hug you till we all dog pile on dad hahaha.  Im not sure how much Ive changed.  Ive lost even more weight, not sure if im taller.  Definitely handomser.  But Im still the same Ryan you gave birth to so thats all that matters.  Let the final countdown begin.


Con Amor,
Elder Walker

Monday, September 21, 2015

When Will My Life Begin?

6:30 AM, the usual morning wake up.  Start the shower, and sing to some David Archuleta.  Shirt and tie, pants, and socks and shine shoes up.  Sing again, then by then, its like 715.  And so Ill read a book, or maybe two or three.  Ill add a few new scriptures to my gallery.  Ill head off to lunch and teach till day breaks dawn.  And I keep wondering and wondering and wondering When will my life begin?

What a long, tiring, exhausting, awesome week!  Many lessons and quemadas and quejadas, but above all, 2 beautiful baptisms.  Lucero, 16, after being an eternal investigador for 8 years, was finally given permission from her papi to be baptized.  It was alot of followup, fasting, diligence, and patience, but in the end it paid off and her time to follow Christ came.  Sara, 20, has also been an eternal investigator for 2 years now.  But after much followup, fasting, diligence and patience, she quit her job and was baptized last saturday.  I was fine, didnt cry, untill Sara and her sister both hugged eachother and started crying now that the family was finally united in the faith.  A moment to never forget.

And my personal highlight was yesterday.  I went to (como se dice despedirme en ingles?) go say goodbye to all my family and friends in my first wards Los Angeles and Progreso.  I wasnt trunky all week up until yesterday.  Yesterday I reminisced on all my mission life ever since I started, as I walked up the old streets where I first started my missionary work.  Sister Glorias house, Emiliana, Jesus Leiva, the old graveyard where drunks used to chase us, lunch with Mama Jade, all the cerros I sweated, bleed, and cried climbing, thinking it would never end.  Painful memories too, haha.  But Im at peace and felt the Spirit so strongly knowing that I did it.  I made it.  I climbed those hills and faught them for 2 years.  And managed to bring many lamanites to the true faith in Christ because of it.  The hardest moments of my life are written in my footprints on those hills.  But time and wind will come, and will blow them away.  None of it really matters.  What matters is the man that I became at the top of the hill.  And not because I made it to the top, but because I faught the temptations and challenges, and learned on the way to the top, and became stronger.  And on the way, found many children of God who were willing to accept the truth, repent, and come to know their God, their Father in heaven that´s waiting for them at the top of Life´s hill.  Nothing has been more worth it.

I have a beautiful family in Peru.  No, I dont want to leave them.  Nor did they want me to go haha.  But I cant wait till you can come meet the people that climbed these hills with me.

Con Amor,
Elder Walker

Tomorrow night,
Lights will appear
Just like they do on my birthday each year.
What is it like
Out there where they glow?
Now that I'm older,
Mother might just
Let me go ..

Thursday, September 17, 2015

My Direction to Perfection

Querida familia,

Another awesome week.  Jessica was supposed to be baptized saturday but apparently it just happened to be the worst traffic day in all of Lima.  So it was postponed till the next morning, and she was baptized before church! :D  My first baptism like this, but turned out awesome and still spiritual.  She seems much happier.  Ive seen how she has tried to forget about all the ugly things that have happened to her in the past.  Shes changed everything!  Her bad words, actions, getting mad or depressed, she even controls her thoughts!  She doesnt want to kill her ex boyfriend anymore!  haha She found room in her heart to forgive all the people that did damage to her, and is now at peace with her life.  Im happy for her. :)  The gospel of Christ the only thing in this world for true happiness.

Church yesterday was fun.  Some old lady I guess forgot to take her medications and came into the Sacrament meeting screaming ANTICRISTO!!  DIOS ES AMOR!!!  ANTICRISTO!  She came back later in the night when we brought investigators to a stake fireside and made it fun again.  We had to escort her out.  Well, we tried.  Didnt work.
In other good news, Sara came to church!! :D  She finally quit her old ratchet job, and will be baptized this saturday.  Shes been an old investigator for about 2 years now.  Someone from my group in the MTC taught and baptized her sister, Lili.  Its cool seeing how the Lord works and how he saves all His children in their right time.  Shes so ready.

Just a quick thought, something I learned this week.  We all have an image of a better person we want to be, right?  Forget that person, and follow the best person you can be- Christ.  He gave us the perfect example to follow.  But how can we become perfect and pure as He?  In 1 Peter 1:22 It says that, "Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love."  We cleanse ourselves through obedience to the gospel truths, then The Spirit can enter into us and cleanse us inside and out.  Thus Christ, "Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;
And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him."  Christ wasnt born perfect, but he was pure.  While growing up, through experiences he learned and was always obedient to His Heavenly Father (D&C 93:12-13), thus proving His exact obedience, became perfect, and our Savior.  Thus we too can become perfect as He, through our obedience and diligence to ALL of God¨s commandments.  I invite you all to do the same.  You will experience more peace and success in life in being obedient to all of God¨s commandments.  But I invite you to keep the small ones on a daily basis.  Small things such as praying, reading, keeping good thoughts, serving, keeping the Sabbath Day holy, or whatever things you feel you could do better.  Though small things appear to be worthless, how we treat the small things we do, realize the big things we do and become a part of ourselves( (Alma 37:6-7).  Want to be perfect?  Be obedient.

Con Amor,
Elder Walker
Baptism of Lucero
She danced in a stake activity and won first place!
Centro de Lima
E;der Rejer amd tje E;der
CCM friend from two years ago.  Still alive in Lima East
Found the door to Narnia
Feast upon the words of Christ
The pizza gathering
Enseñando ingles
lost weight?
ya, my pet lion
My house and foot
Here's a cute one
Baptism of Jessica


Monday, September 7, 2015

September 7, 2015 Amazing Grace

Querida familia,

Captain Walker, reporting.  34 lessons this week, 59 street contects, 9 references, 3 new investigators, 3 on baptismal date, 2 missionarys tired.  Jessica will be baptized this week along with another Lucero who was an eternal investigator.  Sara, that son of a bishop didnt come to church!!!  AH por queeee??!  So she should be ready next week.  Shes got to quit that ratchet job that she said she already did.  But the daughter of Jessica also came to church so she should be ready the 26th and then the whole familia will be complete! :D

Im tired.  No Im not, get back to work!  Isnt that what the missions all about? haha.  Doesnt matter how tired or stressed you are, you have to keep working and just live on a prayer.  I think life is the same.  How many times are we asked or forced to do something we dont want to, but if we dont, we could lose it all?  Thats the paradox of life where success and happiness is found in the journey/struggles and not the supposed "destination" where we can relax forever.  The end of my mission isnt a destination, but rather another beginning.  The end of a job isnt the end of your life either, but the opportunity for one ever better.  Gotta leave one to get one.

This week I learned just how the Lord¨s tender mercies work.  Coming in on the end of my mission, I had the doubt that Id be going to infierno for not being a perfect missionary these 2 years.  Looking back, theres so much more I could have done, and many things I shouldnt have done.  Well, dont we all?  I digress.  Even missionarys are average children of God behind the plack.  They say if the mission doesnt change you, then youll know the kind of lousy missionary you were.  I am changed, but I guess not as much as I thought Id be.  I wanted to be a living Moses or Nephi by the time I get back.  Same goes for all of us- we all have an image of who and where we want to be.  Why dont we ever achieve our goals in life?  Why do we back track?
Anyone who thinks theyll go to hell for their weaknesses, is mistaken.  The person that thinks this doesnt understand the grace of Christ.  As Nephi says in the Book of Mormon, "for we know that is it by grace we are saved, after all we can do. (2 Nephi 25:23)"  As said by the prophet of God, it is the tender mercies of Christ and his infinite love for us that saves us after we do ALL that we can.  That last part is muy importante.  We have to do all that we humanly know we can.  Many think that because they have done something terrible and unforgivable or have addictions to alcohol or pornography, or keep failing in life at the same thing- many think because of their weaknesses that theyre going to hell and should rather just give up.  No, its not like that.  Let me remind you that God have a plan for ALL of his children and doesnt want to lose any of us.  2 Peter 3:9 "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."
I testify that God¨s love extends beyond our comprehension.  He is longsuffering and patient with all of us and our weaknesses.  You may mess up, you may make the same stupid mistake over and over again.  Doesnt matter.  God is well aware.  Rather pray and put your trust in that He will liberate you from these things in the correct time.  There is a time for all of us and our weaknesses.  That time is not today, or tomorrow, or may not even be in a year, but it will come.  The Lord wont forget about you; He will help you.  Do your part and do all you can- dont excuse yourself in messing up, but when you mess up, smile, be at peace, and think on what time the Lord will free you from your weakness.  Dont give up.

I love you all and pray that you will all come to know and trust in the Grace of Christ.  His tender mercies are over all His children who repent and put their confidence in Him.  Have a good week.

Con Amor,
Elder Walker

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

August Emails


Elder Quaker and Elder Torrez
Deivis Jaurez and Giana Franco
Bautismo de Lee
Elder Alvarez and Walker
Elder Forward!!!
Me and Pepa Pig
Love dat bacon
First goldfish in 2 years-thanks EFY
Caught Studying
Baptism of Maria and Diana
Jejeje-solo por una semana
Mi area
Ran into the efy kids everywhere
Pictures of the night sky for Sasheen Grey
This night is more frequent…orange
Baptism of Ashly
My area

Disclaimer:  I have stopped correcting his e-mails because I think partly it is the computer trying to type English.  There are NEVER apostrophes. 
I want to thank everyone for the generous donations to Perú.  I am still looking for gently used ties, church sox and sox in general for adults.
August Emails from Ryan
August 3, 2015  Just Keep Swimming
Querida familia,

Easily the hardset week of my mission.  Wow just so much has happened, I cant even start!  I think Ill just say the zone leaders are mad at us, to sum it all up haha.  So many lamanitas (surpirse room checks), work visits, interviews, and missed phone calls over something so silly.

Well it all kind of started when I bought an awesome mini foosball table for our apartment.  In a work visit, my zone leader saw it and even played with it!  Lol, but then after wards told me we had to turn it in.  So thats where all the room checks and work visits started- just to find my awesome foosball table!  They totally just wanted to play with it in their room.  Not really, they were looking to destroy it hahaha.  Pero les saque la piedra porque jamas lo encontraron.

But Elder Torrez and I are working like burros.  We have so many people in our teaching and coming to church, its rediculo!  Yesterday was also the baptism of the jungle family.  Brother Julio 72, Sister Rosa 68, and jheimy 13.  It was bayutiful!!  The most stressful part was that President Erickson showed up out of no where!  He ended up giving a message in my baptism and thoroughly enjoyed the work were doing. :)  I hope...
The best part was the testimonys afterwards. Well, none of them gave their testimony because theyre super shy (as all people from the jungle). But they were crying, and especially the father was balling.  Broke my heart ;..)  Theyre awesome, cant wait till you guys meet them.  They dont talk much, but are golden converts!  Yesterday payed his tithing and everything!!  They hardly have food to eat, yet still pay tithing and have kept all the commandments, even when his friends tempted him to drink.

Bueno, that was my week.  How was yours?  Not many write much more.  Once again, moms the winner being the only one to write.  You only have 8 more chances to write an Elder Walker!!  Aprovechense!!

Les quiero.
Con Amor,
Elder Walker

August 10, 2015  On the Road Again?
Querida familia,

What an interesting week.  Monday- chill Pday working + awesome Family home evening.  Tuesday- Meeting + working.  Wednesday- working even more.  Thursday- NOOOOOOOOOoOoOoOoOoOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!  NOOOOOOO hahaaaaa capuchigans.  Just my luck.  With just 2 weeks and one change left.  I get the call thursday morning, "Elder Walker were calling you to inform you that you will have an emergency change today at 1pm.  Be ready.  Chau."  beeeeeeeep.  Wow.  NOOOOOO!!  haha just when my area was fruitful and ripe for the harvest, I got changed.  Apparently an Elder went home so they needed someone to fill the gap.  So here I am now in the zone Independencia, area Los Pinos.  My companion is Elder Alvarez from Columbia.  Hes alot like my last columbian companion Elder Espitia.  Very fun and interactive but super clumsy and forgetful.  He only has 4 months in the mish so I guess Ill be teaching him alot too.  And Im District Leader again.  So much for dying tranquilo :(  Buts its been alot of fun so far.  The area already has bap dates, investigators progressing, and a helpful ward.  So this is it folks.  This is where Ill be finishing.  But Ill be finishing working hard ;)

Theres also a group of EFY kids from the states who eat dinner with us sometimes.  I met one who happens to be in the ward of John and Jennifer!!  She knows Ashley.  And her name happens to be Ashley too.  So if you guys are active, you should know some Ashley whos 16 years old.  Ill be sending you guys letters with her. :)

To finish, Ill answer Momma LLamas questions-

How’s the companion?
What’s happening with each investigator?
Well were teaching mostly woman and kids, so thats gunna change soon.  I prefer familys and men.  As Christ said, I am a fisher of men ;)
How was your Sunday?
What is your schedule on “P” days?
Chill and eat with the zone, sometimes futbol till 6.  Today were gunna see a movie in the chapel.
  Have you gained any weight?
Not sure, I always lose weight in a new area, then I gain it all back.  Undecided.
  Have you lost?
Think so.  Gotta hit the gym when I get back.
  Do you still have all your possessions from the beginning?
LOL yap.  I still have all the sun block and taco seasoning you gave me.  I probably used 5% of all the toiletries and things you packed.
  You seem to be healthy most of the time. 
Thanks :)  Blessings of being a working man.

Con Amor,
Elder Walker

August 17, 2015  Time to get Wet
Querida familia,

Welp I forgot my camera AGAIN hahaaaa.  So expect fotos next week.  
But everythings awesome!  I havent worked so hard in 2 months! haha with a new companion, area, ñ responsabilidades, I only get about 5 hours of sleep but so many new investigators!!  5 came to church, but we have 10 new ones just this week ñ I promise at least 8 attend church this week.  Dad would kill to be mission leader here in my ward with so many to teach ñ baptize.  Dont worry, Ill help you guys out when I get back ;).  We reeled in 2 more this week, have another one for this saturday, 4 more for next saturday, ñ several more for September.  With just one last month to take out baptismal dates, things are about to get wet.  Get ready.

Last saturday, Maria 13 and Diana 10 were baptized.  Along with 3 primary kids.  It was fun and spiritual with so many in attendence plus chocolate cake and apple pie after!!  Thats all they pay me in nowadays.... pie and cake.  So worth it.  Im pretty worried about finishing my mission fat...  hope you guys dont mind if I come back a cow.  moo.

But this saturday, Ashly 14 will be baptized.  Only her sister is a member, but Ashly is solid!!  Fulfills every commandment 100% plus always wants to do 10% more.  The other 4 are Brayan 18, Lucero 16, Jessica 38 ñ Lucero 19.  Lucero and Brayan were eternal investigadores who really just needed to have a solid date.  Jessica and Lucero are a family and are stoked to be baptized!  Ready to change their lives and stop fighting + being gossipy haha.  To me they already seem like normal members.

The highlight of my week was seeing my bff Elder Forward (whos now Bennet Forward).  He finished back in November (for those who read my letters and remember).  I missed him soooooo mucho but he came back!  Plus Ill get to see him today!  You guys will probably get to know him someday, were gunna be room buddys at BYUI. :)

So have a fandiddlytastic week!  Keep on baitin ñ fishin ñ waiting for the Lord´s time!  If things dont work out, use a different bait.  If that dont work out, change the fishing pole.  Think about it.  Theres always fish, "The field is white ready for the harvest".  The Lord has promised that there is always more people ready.  There will never run out.  The question is, are you ready?

Con Amor,
Elder Walker

August 24, 2015  Final Countdown
Querida familia,

What an awesome week.  We worked so hard and were exhausted by the end of it.  Yet we still have so much more to do this week.  It all has payed off, as the familia Jessica and her daughter Lucero will get baptized this Saturday along with another joven named Brayan.  Brayan has been an eternal investigator for about a year now and never got baptized just because he wanted "more knowledge".  When all along he just wasn´t repented.  He had an intense interview with my zone leader Elder Garcia (from my CCM group :) and came out declaring to everyone hes getting baptized THIS saturday!!  That was an awesome moment.  The only thing missing... is that it be saturday already!!

Ashley´s baptism was awesome.  Even though her whole familia is chambon and didnt want her to do it, she is solid and wants to keep all of God´s commandments.  And she is :).  The baptism was nice as her bestfriend was their along with the leaders of Young Women.  No doubt it was a special day and shell endure 2 the end.

Tomorrow Elder Bednar comes to my mission!!!!!!  WOO my favorite apostol!!  Cant wait.  Its going to be instense.  Weve read 3 of his talks on faith in preparation, so it should be a huge lecture on faith.  Stay tuned for an inspired letter next week.

Love you all and.... THIS IS IT!!!  My last transfer starts now.  6 weeks to work, sweat, bleed, cry, and work some more to find just one more soul thats willing to change forever and join the sheep fold of God.  Then Ill be waiting for you all here in the offices wondering just when youll get here.  Ive waited for this moment for so long- too long!  2 years waiting for the moment when I can jump into my familys arms.......

Con Amor,
Elder Walker

August 31, 2015  Wake me up when september ends..

Querida familia,

Winter has come and passed, this last month has gone so fast!  Just wake me up when september endsss...

Bednar!!!  Elder Bednar came this last thursday, and it was everything I was hopeing itd be.  My companion and I did a fast the night before so we could recieve many answers to questions, feel the Spirit and a change of character, and not have to get up to go to the bathroom otherwise theyd kick us out hahaha.  Weeks before, they gave us 3 talks he had given on faith and we were asked to study them in preparation for his coming.  So he spoke on faith and how we need to be agents and not objects.  And not praying asking for help, but rather telling the Lord what youre GOING to do and then asking for any needed divine guidance/blessings.  I recieved many answers to questions of my soul.  One of them even being whether he is a true apostol of the Lord so I can have my own testimony in person.  Without a doubt, he is.  He is a living prophet and apostol of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Everything he taught and said was not only true, but with authority and the Spirit of Revelation.  His whole personality is just intertwined with preaching the gospel.  I doubt he has a life outside of preaching the gospel.
It is a great blessing knowing that there are living prophets and apostols in the last days.  Viva Bednar!  Definitely my favorite apostol.

I also saw many friends from the Lima East mission.  Awesome to know that theyre still alive after so much time.  They seem more mature and changed for the better too.  My convert from Infantas, Davis Juarez was also there!  He is so golden solid!!!  He wanted to get to know a living apostol of The Lord too.  He also convinced his mom in the jungle and she was baptized too!  Hes literally a reincarnated John Tanner.

We had yet another baptism this week- Lucero Padilla.  Her mom`s fecha was moved to the 12th of September because she confessed more things that she needs help with.  Which is good, because we could have just baptized her, but she wasnt ready nor probably would have endured to the end.  I prefer her being converted and ready.  And she will be by the 12th after we teach her more about the Atonement of our Saviour Jesus Christ who died for our sins so that we may find forgiveness and move on.  Its the only way to everlasting peace and happiness in this life and forever.
The baptism of Lucero was awesome.  Almost no one came which was sad haha, but she didnt even notice because she just wanted to get baptized and be clean!  The Spirit was definitely there.  Then right after was a stake dance competition of each ward.  She with the ward won first place!!  Its the best feeling watching your converts enjoy church activitys and just knowing theyll be alright and happy here.

Well, Ive talked alot.  Back to work.  Love yall.

Con Amor,
Elder Walker