Bienvenidos a la Mision Chile Santiago Norte! We love the Savior, and are blessed to be part of this great work, to share His gospel, and invite others to come unto Him. We are grateful to have this incredible opportunity to associate with such fine young men and women and other couples who are serving in this wonderful part of the vineyard. We decided to share this mission through a blog, with any who would like to know more.... All of the lessons, talks, training, conferences, and meetings are obviously done totally in Spanish, but for the sake of this writer, the notes are here in English, for speed in typing, and therefore, mixed with a bit of both worlds. We hope all of our missionaries, families, and loved ones can enjoy this blog, in spite of the writing, grammar, language, errors, etc. This will be a miraculous journey, and we invite you to share and enjoy it with us.

Lovingly, con cariño,
Presidente Michael May
Hermana Carol May

Monday, February 28, 2011

Nephi demonstrates power of Prayer

We can continue to learn from Nephi´s great example of being highly favored of the Lord. He has a tremendous testimony of the power of prayer in not only receiving instructions on what the Lord wanted him to do but also to receive the strength to overcome trials and challenges.

In 2 Nephi 4:35 we read:

“And I, Nephi, did go into the mount oft, and I did pray oft unto the Lord; wherefore the Lord showed unto me great things.” (1 Nephi 18:3)

“Yea, I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh. Yea, my God will give me, if I ask not amiss; therefore I will lift up my voice unto thee; yea, I will cry unto thee, my God, the rock of my righteousness. Behold, my voice shall forever ascend up unto thee, my rock and mine everlasting God. Amen.” (2 Nephi 4:35)

Prayer is one of the greatest resources we have as missionaries for a source of spiritual strength to carry out our purpose of bringing souls to Christ. Preach My Gospel teaches “through faith you receive answers to your prayers and personal inspiration to guide you in the Lord’s work.” (pg 116)

Let us be diligent in praying to the Lord in all that we do in this great work so that our efforts are in accordance with His will after the manner in which He shows us.
We love you very much,
President May
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Monday, February 21, 2011

Past successes help increase our Faith

I had the opportunity to work in Rencali zone with two different companionships this past week. I had the opportunity to knock doors. As we were knocking doors, I had the thought come to mind of past bishops and relief society presidents were found by knocking doors. As I kept my mind focused on these thoughts, it built my faith to continue knocking doors with greater urgency and hope of finding more of them.

Nephi was a great example of reflecting on past successes to increase his faith to overcome current trials.

It is one of the many evidences of why he was highly favored of the Lord. Lehi had just died and Laman and Lemuel and the sons of Ishmael were angry once again at Nephi. I am sure Nephi was thinking, “Here we go again, are they ever going to learn?” He must have been feeling somewhat disappointed with the whole situation. In 2 Nephi 4:17 we read:

“Nevertheless, notwithstanding the great goodness of the Lord, in showing me his great and marvelous works, my heart exclaimeth: O wretched man that I am! Yea, my heart sorroweth because of my flesh; my soul grieveth because of mine iniquities.

Nephi was always quick to recognize, especially in times of difficulty and trial, the great things the Lord had done for him. In verses 20-26 we see how Nephi recognizes what God has done for him:

My God hath been my support; he hath led me through mine afflictions in the wilderness; and he hath preserved me upon the waters of the great deep.
He hath filled me with his love, even unto the consuming of my flesh.
He hath confounded mine enemies, unto the causing of them to quake before me.
Behold, he hath heard my cry by day, and he hath given me knowledge by visions in the night-time.
And by day have I waxed bold in mighty prayer before him; yea, my voice have I sent up on high; and angels came down and ministered unto me.

And upon the wings of his Spirit hath my body been carried away upon exceedingly high mountains. And mine eyes have beheld great things, yea, even too great for man; therefore I was bidden that I should not write them.

Nephi draws strength to face adversity and trials that he is currently facing by bringing to memory the times in the past in which he has seen the hand of the Lord in his life in blessing and strengthening him. Nephi uses this as a source of strength ot overcome his current challenges and trials. Verse 26 illustrates this well:

O then, if I have seen so great things, if the Lord in his condescension unto the children of men hath visited men in so much mercy, why should my heart weep and my soul linger in the valley of sorrow, and my flesh waste away, and my strength slacken, because of mine afflictions?

I invite all of you to be like Nephi and remember the blessings and the success the Lord has blessed you with in the past as a missionary to help you overcome challenges and trials you are currently facing.

We are grateful for all that you do in bringing souls unto Christ and we love you very much,
President May
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Monday, February 14, 2011

Elder Scott taught about "Transforming Power of Faith and Character,"

We know that in the mission we are going to have many wonderful spiritual experiences as we go about the work of bringing souls unto Christ. We are also going to pass through some very challenging times. As we reflect upon the words of Elder Amado that with every change we will experience a particular challenge in one form or another to increase our faith.

We learned this past week in our zone conferences about the life of Nephi and how he was at his very best in terms of faithfulness to the Lord, obedience with exactness, and diligence in the most difficult and challenging of times. How was he able to do it?

In his talk entitled, “The Transforming Power of Faith and Character” Elder Richard G. Scott teaches a very powerful principle in regards to developing strength of character to continue to be faithful, obedient and diligent in challenging times.

“Faith and character are intimately related. Faith in the power of obedience to the commandments of God will forge strength of character available to you in times of urgent need. Such character is not developed in moments of great challenge or temptation. That is when it is intended to be used. Your exercise of faith in true principles builds character; fortified character expands your capacity to exercise more faith. As a result, your capacity and confidence to conquer the trials of life is enhanced. The more your character is fortified, the more enabled you are to benefit from exercising the power of faith. You will discover how faith and character interact to strengthen one another. Character is woven patiently from threads of applied principle, doctrine, and obedience.”

In the past I have used the example of bank account when describing the relationship that exists between to missionaries in a companionship. When they love and serve each other and work together in unity and harmony, they make deposits in the account. When the account has plenty of deposits in it, the relationship can withstand any great challenge or trial.

Elder Scott teaches us that when we exercise faith unto obedience with exactness consistently on a daily basis, we will develop the strength of character that we can draw from in times of great challenge and temptation. Our own personal account of faith and character will be sufficeintly full to see us through any trial or challenge. The same faith we exercise in being obedient to the little things in the mission will grow to be a powerful source of strength in times when our faith may be tested in the form of a progressing investigator no longer wanting to be taught, not finding any new people teach, or not having any baptisms for extended period of time. These are the moments where consistently being obedient with exactness to the commandments and the mission rules will give us the power to press forward with a steadfastness in Christ… (2 Nephi 31:20) to accomplish what the Lord wants us to accomplish.

It is my prayer that we will exercise great faith in Jesus Christ that will provide us the power “to do miracles according to God´s will. Faith is a principle of power. God works by power, but His power is usually excercised in response to faith (see Moroni 10:7) (Preach My Gospel pg.116).

We love you and pray for your success,
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Monday, February 7, 2011

Ships are Safe in the Harbor

Good Morning, valiant Missionaries of the Chile Santiago North Mission,

Some of you might not know, but President May is having a birthday tomorrow on Tuesday, Feb. 8th, so I asked if I could write to you dear missionaries, instead and let me share some thoughts with you. You all know that I love President May, and I hope each one of you, in your future, will find an eternal companion with whom you can really feel, is your best friend, and companion from whom you never want to be transferred! He is the best, and I’m blessed to be married and sealed for the eternities with him and our family.

Recently I read again a talk given by Elder Claudio R.M. Costa, then a member of the Presidency of the Seventy, that he gave on 2 Nov 2010 at a BYU Fireside. He entitled it, “Ships are Safe in the Harbor.”

I want to share some of his quotes and thoughts with you. “Years ago, while visiting one of our institute buildings, I saw a beautiful painting on the wall. It was of a 16th-century ship with the sails tied to the mast, anchored safely in the harbor. At the bottom of the painting was the inscription, “A ship is safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for…..as you know, ships are not built to stay in the harbor, but that they are meant to navigate the oceans and to experience adventure. I was remembered that it is the same with us.”

He went on to remind us of prosperous Lehi and his family, with all of their possessions and seemingly happy life, comfortable with their comforts on their daily life. But they left it all, and went to a desert that was not comfortable, because the Lord commanded it and they obeyed. Then speaking of ships, they even were able to board a ship, because the Lord commanded Nephi how to build one, even though he had never imagined that he could do that, or even think he should try to build one. Lehi and his family symbolically left their harbor and sailed with faith.
Also, Alma was one of the priest to the King. He had a high social position, but left it all, after he heard Abinadi teach him the gospel, and also became a follower of Christ. He too left his safe harbor.
Then there is Ammon. He received his mission call, but didn’t get called to the best mission in the world, the Chile Santiago North Mission. He was told, ‘don’t go there, the Lamanites hate us, will not accept you, and might even kill you. Ammon decided to leave the harbor and navigate to an extraordinary adventure. But out of his safe harbor he found, as he told his son Helaman, “The Lord doth give me exceedingly great joy in the fruit of my labors.” (Alma 36:25)
“The Garden of Eden was a safe harbor for Adam and Eve, but they would not have known their full potential if they had remained there.” (Genesis 3)
“Noah and his family left their safe harbor to live on the ark while it rained for forty days and forty nights. By the time it was safe for them to leave, they had lived on the ark for one year. (Gen 7:11-13)
“David a shepherd taking care of his flock. He was a young man, not a soldier. He was in a safe harbor of his life, but he left the security of his harbor, and with courage and great faith he accepted the call to fight Goliath.”
Elder Costa told about the travels, moves, changes and adventures of their own family, having children, was like leaving the harbor and navigating oceans in a new and marvelous adventure; bringing more responsibility and also great joy. It had been better than being anchored in the harbor with no progress. I think of President May also having many gifts, opportunities and future choices to make in his basketball career, and then later in his own personal career progress, but that he too left the safe harbor and followed the Savior when he was first call to serve as a full-time missionary in Bolivia, and then later to choose to step away from other career blessings, to see that the only option he wanted to choose was to heed the call to come and serve here in Chile.
Elder Costa reminds us that we will all have choices and then trials. But you dear missionaries are learning how to follow the Savior amidst the challenges. “Even when turbulence caused by the storms of life naturally comes our way in this mortal existence, we can be led by the lighthouse of the gospel and by our testimonies of our Savior Jesus Christ.” The Savior himself left his safe harbor at the right had of his Father to give His life as an atoning sacrifice for all mankind. He knew this would not be a pleasure cruise, but one that while he was in Gethsemane, “he began to be sore amazed, and to be very heavy.” He trusted and knew that His Father gave Him the power to accomplish all He needed to do.
A scripture comes to my mind, D&C 123:16-17, “You know brethren, that a very large ship is benefited very much by a very small helm in the time of a storm, by being kept workways with the wind and the waves. Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed.”
We love each one of you missionaries, and hope that you set your course to follow Jesus Christ faithfully.
Sister May
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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Why was Nephi highly Favored of God?

Presidente May wrote to the mission this week, helping them prepare for the upcoming zone conferences we will have next week. He asked them to read the General conference talk by Elder Richard G. Scott, "The transforming power of Faith and Character," which he sent attached each of them, in Spanish and English. He invited our missionaries to study and meditate on the the questions, "What does highly favored of God mean?" and also, "Why was Nephi highly favored of God?" -
En preparacion para las conferencias de zona que se efectuaran el 8,9 y 10 de Febrero, con el tema “Ser Altamente Favorecido del Señor”, quiero invitarles a estudiar el discurso “El Poder Transformador de la Fe y el Carácter” por Elder Richard G. Scott dado en la Conferencia General de Octubre 2010 (Adjuntos)
Tambien, quiero invitarles a pensar y meditar en las siguientes dos preguntas:
1. ¿Qué significa “ser altamente favorecido del Señor”?
2. ¿Por qué Nefi fue altamente favorecido del Señor?
Quiero invitarles a buscar referencias de la escrituras en el Primer y Segundo Nefi como evidencias de porque Nefi fue altamente favorecido del Señor y traerlas a la conferencia listo para compartir.

¡Que El Señor les bendiga en esta obra tan maravillosa de traer almas a El por medio de la fe en El, arrepentimiento, bautismo, la recepcion del don del Espiritu Santo y perseverar hasta el fin!

Les amamos,
Presidente May
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