Seriously. There is SO much in this world that we can learn. Perú has really made me realize that. When you think that you know a lot, that’s when you are most wrong. There are always things that you can learn no matter how old or young you are. This is really illustrated by an example that Elder Boyd K. Packer gave at some kind of conference a while ago. First, he drew a line across a whiteboard with a 0% written at one end and 100% written at the other. He said that the line represents the knowledge of God (if you can imagine a single line representing the knowledge of an all-knowing being) and asked each of the people in the audience to think about where they would be. Before long, he drew a little tiny line on the line and said that that was where he was. Now, the line wasn’t near the middle, nor a fourth of the way, but rather was RIGHT next to 0%. He then said, “Now, this is where I am. Where are all of you?”
I had heard that story months ago, but it never sunk in. I really realized that we can always learn. It is like an old saying that many people say: “Try to learn something new everyday.” Now, realizing how much things there are to learn, I would take that a step farther: “Try to learn many new things everyday.” We can always learn. Always.
This week was a pretty great week. We had a three baptisms this week and it was a fabulous service. They were the R. Sisters (well, three of the four that we had been teaching) and the three that were baptized were Rocio (the oldest), Yessenia (the third sister), and Daniela (the youngest). It was an awesome service even though the elders in Peñaloza (our Zone leaders that live a block from the chapel) had to get up at 5:30 to heat up the font since the service was going to start at 8:00 AM. They were a little grouchy, but they did it and the water was super warm. I baptized Rocio and my companion baptized the other two. Then we got to confirm them in Sacrament Meeting the next day, as well. It was super nice. It was also Yessenia’s birthday so the young men and young women all chipped in to buy them a birthday cake. It was awesome. They felt very loved.
For our P-Day last week, instead of just sitting in our room and doing nothing, we decided to go to “Parque de los Mates” up in Cochas. It was really awesome. Mates are these artisan-like objects that these people make up in Cochas out of a gourd-type vegetable. They carve these awesome stories and details with a little screwdriver thing and really focus on the detail. Then they either paint them, or they rub pig fat on them and then some ashes to make them look cool. We had a tour and got to see how they were made. We went there after the park. The park basically had gigantic statues of these creations that they make all over the place. I found a gigantic cui, for example. There were some huge birds. Santa Claus was present, and plenty of other things. However, the best thing that I found in the whole park was a Super Nintendo Controller (yes, even as a missionary, I still love video games and can recognize a Super NES controller where-ever I am in the world.) It was super awesome and the pictures tell the whole story.
We’re having a great time here in Chilca, Huancayo, Peru and I sure do love all of the things that are going on here. The work is amazing and fun. The Lord needs me, and I sure do need Him. I love it. Have a wonderful week everybody because I’m off to have an adventure!!!!
Elder David Van Komen