Elder Justin Jacobson ~ CALLED TO SERVE ~ Guatemala Retalhuleu Mission September/2010 - 2012

First Area: La Grandeza,
Companion: Elder Heywood 11/9/2010 -3/15/2011
Companion: Elder Tadeo 3/15/2011-4/5/2011
Second Area: Central,
Companion: Elder Platero 4/5/2011-4/26/2011
Companion: Elder Lira 4/26/2011-6/7/2011
Third Area: San Pablo (in Malacatan),
Companion: Elder Altamirano 6/7/2011-7/19/2011
Companion: Elder Matute 7/19/2011-10/11/2011

Fourth Area: San Sebastian
Companion: Elder Platero 10/11/2011-02/15/2012
Fifth Area: Pueblo Nuevo
Companion: Elder Jack 02/15/2012-
Companion: Elder Velasquez -08/30/2012
Companion: Elder Ortega 08/30/2012-09/13/2012

Monday, September 26, 2011

For Jordan

Dude Jordan,
ha hows it going fool. i looked at the date today and realized that your birthday is coming up. your not turning 23 are you. how crazy is that, ive gotta say that despite challenges the years have treated us, as brothers well. the following are some of the memories that encompass the highlights of our lives:

catching polliwogs in the lake by our house in roy.
playing the header game on the tramp.
playing tether ball
playing Halo
building a fort in the sandbox and taking the gamecube into it and getting it all full of sand.
Selling donuts for tasties
when we had to spray that mold house with bleach and i almost passed out from the fumes.
when i worked with you and we listened to the airplanes song and ate at betos every day.
the time arpidet was talking about the guy that talks in the commercials and he said "One man, running through the forest"
the time we stayed up all night making the rug for grammy, and playing Diablo 2
the time you always got Ladies in high school and i never had ladies. (that one is still happening)
playing soccer for Clearfield
River rafting.
the time we played soccer in roller blades and almost killed each other.
the time we fell off the bed and landed on our necks, then we did it again to show dad.

Well i could keep going forever, but im low on time. but i want to wish you an exceptionally happy birthday, and remind you that the years still hold a lot of good memories for us. one day we will be old men with grandchildren and look back with a smile on the lives that we have lived.
i just want to finish up by encouraging you to read the book of mormon. I can promise you that if you read a few chapters every night your life will go alot smoother. DO IT.
I love you brother.
Elder Jacobson

the wheels in the sky keep on turning

Just sendin a shout out to my dad and all the other journey fans out there.
well, it was another good week. The work is moving along. sometimes not as fast as i would like it to, but i guess thats why they say that Gods thoughts are higher then the ours. we have a few investigators that can progress towards baptism. as usual they all have challenges and doubts, but we finally have some people that are willing to read the book of mormon and pray about it, which is an upgrade, because generally its all but impossible to get someone to really read the book of mormon. yesterday we had 4 investigators come to church. two of them are the daughter and the son in law of our ward mission leader. we have never even really taught them because they havnt wanted to hear from us in the past, but we talked to them yesterday, and they seem more open to us. so hopefully we will see some progress there. one of the other investigators is a 10 year old girl named engma. her dad came to church once, but didnt really like it, and her mom doesnt really want to hear anything for us, but she is always in church. yesterday we talked to her mom and she told us that her daughter had said that she loves the church, and that she will never go to any other church. the cool thing is that because of her example her mom decided to come to church last night to see a church video. it was pretty cool to see how Heavenly Father is working through the testimony of that little girl to help open the whole family up to the Gospel.
well what else can i say. i continue to enjoy my life. the members are really coming to like us here. i think mostly because they had some lazy elders here before, but now almost every time we talk to any of the members they ask when we will have changes. and when we tell them they say oh, well hopefully neither of you get changed. so at least that part of it makes life easier. its cool because now, any time we want to go out to visit an investigator, we can just call almost any member, sometimes even whole families, and they go out with us. my comp and i are also getting along well. i think we have to make alot of compromises because we disagree in alot of things. but we are learning to swallow our pride and listen to one another so that we do the right thing. but its been alot of fun with him.
this morning we went to the quetzal refuge. the quetzal is the national bird here in guatemala, and there is like a national park of them in our zone. unfortunately we didnt see any quetzales, but it was a really beautiful place, with waterfalls and rivers and streams and the indigenous people that still sacrifice animals (we tried to teach that the law of moses has been fulfilled, but they didnt really get it). it was fun to be with the whole zone and just relax for a few hours. the downside was that we didnt go play soccer, ha i think this is the first p day ever that we didnt play, which is bad news, because i am just going to keep getting fat. but i guess that thats the way things go.
well, it sounds like everyone is doing good there. how crazy that the ward is sending out another 2 missionaries. i think that the syracuse 10th has like 15 out by now. that sucks about jordans car. looks like the rodeo has had its last bull ride. hahaha, that was probly a badly timed joke, but the delete button is broken on my keyboard, so i cant take it back. but just remember to have alot of faith. if you feel like you cant figure out what to do go read in Ether 12, and pay attention to vs 6 and 18. and remember that sometimes we cant see the solutions to our problems, but Heavenly Father already has a solution worked out, go ask Him for help, and ye shall receive.
well i hate to say, but its time to go. mainly because we didnt eat breakfast this morning and we are going to eat right now. But just know that i am happy here. Heavenly Father is blessing me alot, and i am learning a ton. i think i never realized how much we can really learn about the gospel, or how much the scriptures can really teach us, but now i have like 1000 questions and i am finding new answeres and new knowledge every day ( but the real question is how do you spell answeres) I love you all, i pray that you are always happy and living the Gospel. have a good week, and get ready for winter, its just around the corner after all. Adios
Elder Jacobson

Monday, September 19, 2011

its p-day once again

Yes indeed, we´ve made it trough another week. september is winding down, and we are finally moving out of the rainy season. I actually have a hard time believing that the rainy season is over, because it was raining when i started my mission, and that was about a year ago. i dont imagine that the rain will stop any time soon. but who knows, life is like a box of iguana heads, you never know if your gonna get a tape worm. so it was another good week. as usual, there were some hard things and some great things, but in the end im always content. Im learning that its important to see the Lords hand more in our lives, especially in ways that we dont expect. i think alot of times we pray with all our hearts that Heavenly Father will bless us with something, but then we dont get exactly what we want and we think that He let us down. my comp showed me something he learned, and explained that if we ask for something righteous, with real faith that we will receive it, Heavenly Father will always answer in 1 of 3 ways. He will either say yes, or He may say wait for a while, or He might say "I have something better for you", but he will never tell us no. So lately i have been trying to pray with more faith and then look for the answers that Heavenly Father gives, even if they are not the answeres i wanted or expected. For example i have been praying alot that the members would help us by inviting their friends to find out more about the church. the truth is that its almost impossible that someone will get baptized if we just contact them off the street, but its alot more likely if they have a friend that invites them. there is a few members that said they would bring their friends to church, and i was really praying that they would come through and bring them. but then when i got to church i saw that none of the members we had talked to had brought their friend. for a moment i thought "how could that happen, i prayed with faith?" but then a less active member came in to sacrament a little late, and brought one of his neighbors that he had invited to church. i realized that i was expecting an answer in a specific way, but Heavenly Father decided to bless us in a different, probably better, way. Just one of the many things that i have learned lately. on saturday we had our ward activity. it was alot of fun. i forgot my camera so i cant send pics, but there was music, dancing, games and food. alot of people showed up and it was a good time for the branch to grow closer together. something interesting is that I had to make a real effort to keep myself involved in everything. generally i prefer to keep to myself, and not talk alot, but as a missionary i had to change things. i thought about when mom told me about the book she read about introverts, and extroverts. I think i lost alot of energy from being in a social environment and having to talk to a ton of people. it was a real challenge for me, and afterwords i felt exhausted. ha in the end i loved it and had a good time, and im happy that im learning to come out of my shell and be a more social person. Just one of the many things i have learned lately. Well the bad news is (i hate that there is always bad news) that both Rafael and Elmer have decided they dont want to get baptized. its sad to me because i think that they know what is right, but because of fear, or pride they wont accept the Gospel. my comp and i made the decision not to visit them any more to go look for other people. it was sad, but afterwords i felt peaceful, knowing that that is what we are supposed to do right now. So now its off to the races again to see who else is being prepared for the Gospel ( Alma 16:16). last night i had the dream again. ive had it probably 7 or 8 times since ive been on the mission. its the dream that i am at home, and that everyone is congratulating me for finishing my mission. every time i try to tell everyone that i havent finished yet and that i still have more to do, but everyone at home just keeps saying welcome home and stuff. how weird huh. i think i mainly have that dream when i start to think that there is no one in my area that wants to get baptized. every time i have that dream i wake up with the realization that my time here is really short, and that i dont want to go home thinking that i needed to do more. well thats all for now. I love you all. by the way thanks for the package. i dont know how you do it, but you always put in there everything that i was thinking to ask for. so thanks for that and for all of the letters. i have now received one from Lonica johnny and jalen. just waiting for King jordans to show up and then i will have the whole set. Have a good week. good luck on the eagle project. good luck on the gymnastics season and dance and on everything thats going on. Talk to you next week . Love Elder Jacobson

Monday, September 12, 2011

For johnny's Eyes Only

yo jon, sup. hey dont got mucho tiempo, if you know wut im sayun, but i jus wanned tuh tell you something tight... SUPERTIGHT. and guess what it is that i want to tell you. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MY SON. its hard for me to beleive that you have already reached the ripe old age of 14 yrs. ha they will be making you a teacher soon. and just wanna give you some advice. now that you can drive, you might have tons of ladies tryin to be your girlfriend. but when that starts goin down just remember to do what your older brother justin did. Which is KICKém TO THE CURB. so thats my only advice on your birthday. i love you little brother. thank you for your example and freindship that you have always given me. keep being a great guy to everyone. always say your prayers and read your scriptures. always have your goal be to go on a mission. You are going to do awesome things with your life. ADIOS me amigo. cant believe my baby bro is 15.

its a new dawn its a new day its a new life for me and im feelin good.

well fam. another week has come and gone. yesterday our ward mission leader said a cool phrase that i had never heard. he said time gets away from us like agua en la mano. ha what a good metaphor. its like i dont even notice it going by, but week by week and month by month time just keeps going. ha but it was a pretty good week.
i say it was a good week, but that is partially a lie. the truth is that it was a pretty hard week with a good ending. so i guess that alls well that ends well. it just felt like nothing was moving in our area. all of our investigators werent really accepting anything, and i didnt feel like we were going to be able to baptize any one any time soon. In this frame of mind, i did the only thing i could think to do, which was pray. every day i would pray that we could do something effective or help someone progress. then on sunday our prayers were answered. first of all one of our more positive investigators came to church with his whole family except his wife. he said he has been looking for a church where all of his kids could learn about the gospel. we talked to him later in the day, and he said that he planned on getting baptized in the church, but that he wanted to do it together with his whole family. so now we are going to have alot of work to do with his wife, but at least he knows what he wants to do. His name is Raphael, and hers is maria estela. remember them in your prayers, this month could really change their lives.
the day continued to go well. we went with some members to talk to hno elmer. another investigator that is positive, but just hasnt made the decision to get baptized yet. but we talked to him, and in the end he agreed to be baptized the 24th of this month. pretty awesome right. my testimony of prayer and faith has really grown alot. its crazy how sometimes we get to the point when we dont know what to do besides kneel down and ask for help. but whenever we do that, things work out and Heavenly Father Provides the way. I guess it makes alot of sense when you think about it. we are so tiny and powerless in this huge world, we can do as much as possible, but our efforts will always be very small. but when we put our faith in Heavenly Father, he will do the work, and make our efforts to get something done.
well after all that the day ended perfectly. a member family invited us to have dinner at their house. we went with some other members and it was like a big party in the house. everyone was laughing and happy, they even let me carve the roast beast. that last part may sound like a joke, but we really did eat roast beast, i will send pictures...
So in the end, i am happy here. sometimes i think i get caught up on everything i dont do, so i forget that we really are making a difference here. the branch has become alot stronger since we got here, and i have come to know and love almost all of the members here. Despite all of the difficulty, the mission is really an awesome life changing experience. ill never regret this time ive given to the lord.
well what else. they had the elections here in guatemala yesterday. the whole town basically did the same thing yesterday, which is vote, and then get drunk and party. ha it was good that we had the two lessons i told you about, because it would have been useless to go into the town, no one would have wanted to hear us. ha funny story after church we were on our way to eat when we got stuck in this long line. i didnt know where it went until they shoved me into a voting booth. i wasnt sure what to do , so i ended up voting for a guy named Santiago galindo mendez chavez. Ha hopefully he doesnt win or ill feel bad.
well, there is a million things i could tell you, but then i would have to kill you....... so its safer if i just finish now. I love you all. Im glad to hear all is well in school and work and everything you do. Sounds like BYU is gonna pown this year, go Cougars. Have a great week and remember about the importance of faith and prayer. dont give up when life is hard, and dont harden up when life gives... I guess it doesnt really work that way, but i love you all. ADIOS
Elder Yacopsen

Monday, September 5, 2011


haha i didnt really realize, but we have been talking about me being done with my first year for about the past three weeks. but the funny thing is that its still not here. ha this wednesday is the big day. i dont think ill do anything special. I was thinking about burning every article of clothing i possess, but my comp reminded me that we are out of matches. so i think ill just give it all away. or maybe ill burn it and then give it away. you just never know. the one sure thing is that i will be needing you to send 6 pairs of pants and 12 shirts, or i am going to be preaching in the nude.

well this week went by well. your prophecy was fulfilled about changes. neither i or my comp had changes , so we are both here in san pablo for another 6 weeks. im pretty happy. like i said i like the area alot, and im really hoping to do something special here. something that will be talked about for years after im gone. or if not ill settle for some baptisms. either way there is work to do here in san pablo, and im the elder for the job. cool experience with the book of mormon. this morning i woke up feeling weird. not sick or anything, just like kind of mad, or annoyed and tired. i dont really know what it was, just a bad spirit i guess. so i put on some Mo. Tab. and started reading. i read only a few chapters, but afterwards i felt calm and content. The book of mormon is so saturated with the spirit. its like a sponge soaked in paint, you cant even touch it with out getting some on you. Its a shame that i didnt utilize (sick word) it more effectively.

So it looks like we are going to be changing our house. the owner keeps trying to punk us. when the missionaries started living there she charged 800 quetz. later she charged 900, and now she wants 1000. its a pretty shrude business tactic. its not really fair, its probably not even legal. but it does make more money faster. maybe you guys could implement an idea like that with fortress. let me know how that goes. so any way we have been looking for a new house. its kind of hard because we dont have ksl. com, and we dont really know that many people. but the members have helped alot, and we have about three possibilities right now. I let you know how it goes

well no exciting stories this week. it was a week of normal. i guess the most unusual thing was that we didnt get chased by any dogs. ha i didnt know this about myself, but i have a pretty serious phobia of angry dogs. whenever they come barking at us, my fight or flight kicks in and i take off running. ( i guess it should be called flight or.... run away defense) but im learning to keep my cool and stand my ground more. usually if you show them that your not afraid, they are afraid of you. except thats not always the case, because i know some people that have been bitten. Only one was seriously injured, but he had that coming.

Im glad you got my letter, i didnt send one last week, but ill get one in today. Im PUMPED to see what fantastic adventure dress boy will ... complete next. ha well its time to go already, this was kind of a weird email. but its sent with much love I hope you all enjoy your labor day, and do lots of labor. I miss you all, but not too much. Im working hard and trying to make you all proud. i love you all. Adios Elder Jacobsonps.

the picture is hna angela in her baptism. the man is a member hno escolastico. they are both awesome. the other picture is a bunch of little kids. haha