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Elder Ritter - 2/27/2023

Hey all! Got one more week before transfers and wow this transfer has really blown by. We are gonna be getting a TON of missionaries this next transfer, so we'll see what happens. The entire mission is gonna be changed pretty soon, pretty much by the end of summer. Should be super interesting!


Not much to report this week, but we did find a new woman at church this week! Her name is Daniela and she saw one of our Christmas ads a long time ago and she finally came to church to this Sunday. Shes a student from Senegal, and is learning Spanish too, so we're in the same boat somewhat. It was a super powerful meeting and she seems really at home here already. We're super pumped to teach her. 


We did some visits to less active members which yielded some interesting results. We visited one guy in a little pueblo that had been baptized a while ago, but folks had lost contact with him, so we went to visit him. He immediately let us in, talking at a million miles a minute, jabbering about how he doesn't fear death anymore and the Mormons led him there, and how his dog is his spiritual guide that will eventually be reincarnated as a spiritual guide for another person. It was really interesting. Then he showed us a clip of the new puss in boots movie that he liked and just laughed at it for a bit. He also started praying with us, but he laid on the ground like a muslim and that's how he prayed. Pretty interesting guy and a super sketchy city, so we left pretty quickly. 


We also went to Madrid this week to get my residency finally figured out and we met up with some other missionaries to do it  including my old trainer Elder Watkin! That was fun to see him again and it's always fun to hang out with other elders. I also got my key for the car so now I officially can drive in Spain! It's a little different from the states, but that's OK. Super stoked I can do that now. 


And of course scripture study is still my favorite part of the day! A scripture that really caught my attention recently was in the Sermon on the Mount chapters of Matthew, which are just so packed full of cool practical stuff you can use literally every day. So many beautiful passages on how to treat others, how to love God, and so on. But one verse in particular stood out to me, where Jesus was preaching about loving others. He says, "For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?" 


It's true isn't it? It takes zero effort on our part to love someone who loves us back. I don't find it hard at all to love my family, especially when they do things that show their love for me. But, to paraphrase the scripture, where's the fun in that? Anybody can love someone, but not everybody can love everyone. That's considerably much harder, and I'm sure you can agree. But the blessings from our Father in Heaven are so much greater. When you treat truly EVERYBODY (even that person sitting next to you at the DMV that won't stop talking on the phone really loudly or whatever) with kindness, God notices and He opens the windows of heaven for you. 


Christ is our perfect example. He truly loves EVERYBODY. So much so that He was willing to die for all of us. While we may not be able to follow His example perfectly, we can maybe start by reacting with a little more patience to an annoying coworker, with more sympathy to an always-complaining friend, or with love towards your bitter rival wherever they are. There can be no harm in showing a little bit more love. Where's the fun in holding back your love for those who already have it? 


Christ said it best: "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven." 


Get out there and LOVE!


¡Cristo vive! ¡El Libro de Mormón es verdadero! 


¡Os amo! 

Elder Ritter


Fotos:

Me and Elder Eastmond on our exchange

Flowers in Murcia 

Elders in Madrid

Me and the comp in the new mission car



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