Monday, October 26, 2015

Three French Hens

I turned three months old this week.
time flies like a really fast thing flying.
I'm bad at similes and poems.

Here in El Salvador we do things a little differently than America:

First: of all, we don`t speak English, we speak Spanish. 

Second: we eat pupusas, and we sell pupusas
Third: we all have little stores in our house or a pupusaria
fourth: we all go to a church, but we choose which one fits our schedule the most.
Fifth: fourth is easy because there are more churches than pupuserias
Sixth: I'm done with this list so ya.
Seventh: I lied about sixth.

As missionaries we really appreciate the lots of pupusas thing, but the lots of churches thing makes it really fun.

I love being a missionary.

This week we worked really hard. We are getting ready to help Ricardo be baptized this week, but his dad Obidio is going to wait a little longer. It's ok he'll be ready soon.

Does this letter seem disorganized? I`m really sorry about that, I`ll try to collect my thoughts a little better. Friday I went on exchanges with Elder Ford my zone leader. He is a really good missionary, and a real quality guy. he only has 3 weeks
left in his mission, but he`s on fire; working really hard  to finish with a bang. I look up to him a lot.

I'm learning a lot about patience here.


It's a concept that is really almost impossible to learn. by the time you've got it, you don't need it anymore, but when you need it again, you don't need it.

I love what Preach my Gospel says about Patience. Go read the section in chapter 6 of PMG that talks about it.

Patience is more than just waiting.

I'm sorry this email was kinda mixed up, but it's kinda been a mixed up week. Just remember three things

1. I love you
2. God loves you.
3. You are important to Him, and to me.

This week we were talking to a less active member that is going through some really tough times. he kept saying "I can't, I can't." and it was heartbreaking to see that he actually believed it. He had no hope in his life. I promised him, as I promise you, that Jesus Christ loves you, and through his love and eternal grace: YOU CAN. You can overcome the garbage that life throws at you. Start telling yourself you can, even if you don`t believe it yet. Say it one thousand times
if you need to. "I CAN." Jesus Christ will help you, you CAN do it. I promise. There is always hope.

I love you, and I want you to be happy. Just do the things you know you should, and we  can all be happy through Jesus Christ.

Have an amazing week!

Elder McFarland

Monday, October 19, 2015


Well it rained all day and it rained all night.
The rain came down on my head
(drip drop, drippity drop)
I said El Salvador`s wet
but it might as well be June!
(drip drop, a drippity drop!)

Please do me a favor and hum that song until its stuck in your head until tomorrow! This week it has been raining pretty much nonstop since Friday. You get wet, you kinda dry off (but not really in this humidity) and then you do it all again as soon as you leave a house.

I`ve seen a lot of miracles this week.
But first a funny story

So there is this lady named Dora that didn`t let us even talk to her that much two weeks ago. She lives in a house with a real, solid, knockable door. (tender mercies of the Lord, an actual door with a handle like the one my house has.) after all the thin metal doors here in this country it was a miracle.

But anyways I digress. this time she let us in to teach her! she introduced us to her teenage sons, and we started teaching lesson 1! She was kinda guarded at first but slowly and surely the Spirit entered the lesson. She started to be receptive of what we were saying. my companion was teaching the Savior`s Earthly Ministry and starting into the Apostasy so I could finish it and teach the Restoration. I was praying super hard to be able to do it well when
all of a sudden we heard a car honk. she grabbed my arm and told me to get in the corner. A car was pulling into the garage. and we were apparently hiding from someone. I was convinced I was going to be shot. But, turns out it was just her husband and he doesn`t like it when people are over that he didn`t invite. So as soon as the garage
door closed she had us run out the front door.

Scary. Funny.

But the worst part is that the lesson was ruined. She told us to come back another day.

Another Tender Mercy: I taught someone this week that is from Utah. Her mom got deported so she was there visiting her family, and we taught her, her sister, and her sister`s boyfriend. They said they would like to get baptized! ( here we always invite to baptism in the first lesson, sometimes even during contacting.) We are going to have to work with them though, but they have the desire! Now they just
need the testimony from the BoM and to keep their commitments and in 3 or 4 weeks they can be baptized! I have to take her an English BoM today becasue she likes English better than Spanish. This is a miracle because she was already supposed to have gone back to Utah but there
were some complications, but I know its because she is supposed to get baptized before going home! (She's a US citizen.)

The Lord blesses us, but we have to notice the hand of the Lord.

The brother of Jared teaches us this. He needed to light the barges to get to the promised land, so what did he do? He prayed to the Lord. Then the Lord asked him what HE thought he should do. Sometimes the Lord answers our prayers by letting us ponder it in our minds first. Then the brother of Jared asked the Lord if he would touch the stones so they would be lights, and the Lord did. And, because the faith of the brother of Jared was so great, he was able to see the hand of the Lord answering his prayer.

This story hit me this week.

I had been praying really hard for blessings but was having a hard time seeing the results. I was kinda struggling, but then I noticed. God was helping me at every step of the way
I had just neglected to see Him touching the stones to light my way.

As we seek the Lord in our lives, we find Him. we may not actually see His physical Hand, but we can see the things He touches and increase our Faith until one day we return to His presence and see Him as He is.

It is my personal resolution this week to see the Hand of the Lord guiding me in my life

I hope you do the same.

Now two questions:

What are you going to do differently today to be better than you were yesterday?

What are you going to do differently tomorrow to be better than you were today?

Specific answers, and specific prayers, bring specific blessings.

I love you all so much.

Remember who you are!!

You are a Child of God! An heir to what He has!

Stay chivo,

Elder McFarland

a man a plan a canal Panama

Monday, October 12, 2015

Changes are transfers and Exchanges are Interchanges and divisions are splits and nanybody knows until the day before

To understand the title of this Email you must first learn the Spanish words for how the mission works.

I`ll let you figure it out, but please promise to read the whole title.

So this week I learned some things, I forgot some things, I remembered some things, and now its time for me to write a letter.


Do people even read these letters? I mean, shout out to Addie Rutter, Kallee Pierce , and Cardon Merrill for acknowledging that they do, and I know my family reads them, but... Im just curious who else, so send me a like a ten word email this week telling me if you read this and how you are doing... deal?

I`m in a really good mood this week, so if my letter is a bit confused just know that a veces mi mente es completemente frito y las idiomas no importa por nada.

But... I actually wasn`t in a really good mood the second half of this week. Let me explain, no wait, there is too much, let me sum up!

One of the things I learned this week is that God loves me and that I am important to him. This has always been one of the strongest parts of my testimony, but this week I felt it profoundly. I could feel him just out of reach. Encouraging me and maybe even righteously chuckling at me trying to esforzarme the best i could but struggling a little bit.

Also I learned that my Heavenly Mother loves me. Its a very sacred topic, a very sacred love. Go read Our Search for Happiness if you want to learn more. I just think about how much my mom here on earth worries for me and loves me while I am away from home, and waits anxiously for the day that I come back home, and I begin to see how much she must miss us all here and how much she worries for our eternal welfare.

Something I forgot this week? to be happy. Wednesday we had a multi zone conference and I saw my CCM companion Elder Maxwell and I remembered how much i love him. Then I sinned a bit by starting to compare him with my current companion. Ccomparisons suck. They make you feel nasty and down on yourself. The only thing you should compare is who you were yesterday with who you are today. I repented and now I'm feelling a lot better about myself and about life. Promise me you won`t compare things that it isn`t really fair to compare.

Saturday morning I fell and scraped up my leg and arm pretty good. I think my cocinera`s son put up a video of me laughing and screaming while we were cleaning it on Facebook. i dunno though. I felt a little discouraged, but...Pause for dramatic effect... you wanna know what happened?

I remembered something.

Well, I fasted from Saturday afternoon until Sunday afternoon for a number of investigators (pray for Juana, Diego, Nataly, the Moreno family, Kevin Flores, Ricardo, Obidio, and the Las Delicias Ward please) but I also fasted for myself. What followed was the hardest evening of the month.

I wondered, why? I was praying so hard to be able to have success, I had fasted so hard to be able to be happy, but I was feeling like crap. Why when I was trying so hard was I struggling so hard? My leg hurt, my arm was infected, I felt negative toward my companion, and I didn`t know how to get out of it.

Well, I pressed forward with steadfastness in Christ. and you know what? at every lesson I had the ability to testify powerfully. The portion of the spirit I had fasted so hard for came! I remembered, I had ASKED for hard times. Well, not actually,  but the hard times are what made me stronger!

I love a talk by Elder Holland about this.

How dare we expect it to be easy, when it was never easy for them of old. It wasnt easy for Abinidi, for Alma, for Moses, for David, for Noah, for Nephi, for Ether, for Ester, nor for ANYONE that has been called to this work. This is not an easy work, this life is not a walk in the park. If we want to be great, we have to struggle, we have to stretch, we have to grow. When we work out a muscle it gets sore, when we push ourselves to the limits, the limits are broken.

And just remember the greatest Man who ever walked on this Earth. Was it ever easy for Him? was it easy when He was rejected by those who should have worshipped Him? was it easy when He took upon Him the sins of the very people who had rejected Him, and sweated great drops of blood for them, crying out in pain to the Father? Was it easy when He was beaten? Was it easy when he was slain?


But Jesus the Christ did all of these things for us, for ME. So that when I come upon hard times in my life, he understands how to make me happy. He knows what I need to be able to vencer, overcome, the trials that I face on a day to day basis. He suffered for my sins, He suffered for yours, and He died so that we may smile in the face of
struggles, knowing that all these things will be for our good. And now, He lives.

I testify of Him as one called to represent Him here in El Salvador.

He loves you.

He is waiting for us to return, with our whole family.

Just be patient, and trust Him.

Today, I feel happy. My arm hurts, my leg hurts, but only a little bit. My heart doesn`t hurt though. He helps me be whole.

Please, turn to Him, strenghting your faith.

I love you all,

Elder David McFarland

Monday, October 5, 2015

They day I almost died but only for like 12 hours

I think my favorite part about writing emails is creating the subject.

I`ll let you stew a while before I tell you why I titled this email how I did.

This week was a really good one. The whole week we were preparing for
conference and so that included inviting everyone to come. At all our
lessons and contacts we told people they could come hear living
prophets. What a great privilege that is that we can listen to the
words of God!

This week was one of the fastest that I`ve had here. Honestly time
flies by here in the mission. Today is the only today we`ll ever have,
so make it count(i think I may go into the cheesy fortune cookie
business) no but really, what I mean is that Today is the only chance
you have to live through the fifth of October in the year 2015. its
the only chance you have to do what you will do today, so why waste
it!?! Something I`ve begun to learn here in the mission is that you
can`t let time control you. You can`t be always haunted by deadlines
and due dates. You have to control the time yourself. You are the boss
of what you are going to do today. Are you going to do that assignment
for English,? are you going to take a nap? are you going to play with
your family? decide and then do it! Just make the choice, and then
enjoy the time you have doing what you are doin. and then when the
time`s up, do something else! be the master of your time and learn to
get everything you need to done AND relax and enjoy yourself.

Here in the mission there`s no time to waste. From 6:30 to 8 we
exercise (haha most of the time...) and get ready for the day,
including breakfast. From 8 to 12? study time, the time of the day I
get to be the Lord`s investigator, and learn what I need to to
mejorarme(sorry sometimes I just... Spanish on accident.) 12 o clock
lunch at our cocinera`s house and then 1 to 8?? You level your head
and get to work!!! 8 to 9 is dinner.9:00-9:30 plan 9:30-10:00 get
ready and go to bed.

So to review. only 7 hours of the day do we have to actually work.
like what? Those 7 hours are the best seven hours though, and what we
need to get the job done. We take control of our day, it doesn`t
control us!!

So ask yourself. Are our hours ours? (haha, say that ten times fast)
are you a slave to time or do you use it as a tool.

For my whole life, Ive been a slave to time. I`m a professional
procrastinator. I'm SO good at it, but...NOT ANYMORE! I feel like I`m
finally learning to control my own time.

I invite you to do the same

Here's where to start. Put God`s things first in your schedule. For me
right now that means putting my life in His hands for two years. What
does that mean for you? Also, every day here in the mission we give
the first hours of the day to the Lord through study. At home you
don`t have to study for 4 hours every day, please don`t, but put God`s
time first. Study for the time you can, pray every morning and night,
and each week give him 1 day to get yourself organized.

From there you can decide. Do what you need to AND what you want to.

Wow I kinda got off on a time tangent there. Is anyone even reading
this still? don`t worry, I did it on purpose, but... still... this
email is long.

Ok I`ll finally tell you why I titled this email the way I did.

So conference, right?

It was SO amazing. I learned so much. Like that the Gospel is really a
lot simpler than we think, just keep getting better and serving God
and others and doing what God tells you to do through the scriptures,
church leaders, and personal revelation.

So I really loved conference


Saturday during the afternoon session I began to get really sick.
REALLY sick. I was trembling, my whole body hurt, including my head,
legs, stomach, and back, and I had a high fever. in between sessions I
tried to take a nap, but I couldn`t. I was in a lot of pain. My
companion gave me a blessing that told me that by Sunday morning I
would have the health I needed to enjoy conference. So I had faith in
that and kept pressing on.

Priesthood session came and went and I don't remember much of it... I
was really not feeling ok. After I had to get a ride from a member
with my comp cuz I couldn't really walk that well. I crashed in bed as
soon as we got home.

That night I was up 5 times in the night, during which times I decided
to see what the bathroom looked like at night(interpret that how you
may) I began to think that I wasn't going to be able to enjoy
conference like my blessing said I would, but I had faith.

At either 3 or 4 in the morning.( I don't remember which of the times
exactly it was.) I woke up to go examine the bathroom and my fever had
broken. My body ached a lot less and I felt a little better.

By the Sunday Morning of General Conference, I was fully able to pay
attention and take notes on what was being spoken. By Sunday night I
was well enough that we went to work after the Sunday Afternoon

I believe in the God of Miracles.

I have a testimony of the power of the priesthood.

I had prayed earlier in the week for a faith building experience. What
I got was what everyone thought was Chikunguye(an African disease
that's like a worse version of Dengue) on Saturday but wrote off as a
simple malestar (sorry I spanished again) on Sunday.

Whichever you believe, it doesn't really matter. the fact of the
matter is that God helped me be healed enough to fulfill my righteous
desires. He healed me by His power through my faith.

He loves all of us.

Well I think this letter may have overstayed its welcome, but I hope
that you at least enjoyed it or learned something or repeated a phrase
ten times.

I love you all

Try a little harder to get a little better

Elder McFarland