Weeeeeeeelll. What a week, what a week. Short letter today.
We had stake conference the week and oh my goodness gracious. SO much personal revelation. Dang. It was incredible. I took eleven pages of notes, hahah. Elder Calderon, one of the area seventys, Elder Uceda, a seventy and President of SudAmerica NorOeste (South America Northwest), and our dear President Richardson were all present. Hello spiritual hiiiiiiiiiiigh! (Even though every day is a spiritual high, hah.)
The guys (or men-folk in general) got machete´d duriiiiiisimo (hit with advice really hard) because machismo (macho-ism) here is literally getting way too out of hand. Besides that, here are the highlights:
-Tenemos una sola boca y dos oidos. We have ONE mouth and TWO ears… LISTEN.
-The power to make miracles happen is inside y'all. (You have the ingredients for success, now put them to good use.)
-The word 'Faith' comes from the Latin root 'Fides', which means confianza (trust). We must put our trust and faith in Christ. Just like how little toddlers take a couple of tottering steps and then full on run to their parents´outstretched arms, we should do the same. Totally and completely trust that Christ and our Heavenly Father with catch us if we fall, and alllllwaaayyyysssss have their loving arms open towards us. We are the ones who need to acercarnos, or get closer to them.
Mission Pres & Sis Richardson, Companions & yo (me)
WELLLLLLL, I got way bummed out for some reason and was kinda discouraged for like an entire day (it was teeeeerrrrrrrible.) My Zone Leaders noticed at the zone meeting (probly cuz I wasn’t raising my hand every 57 seconds like I usually do) and were really worried because usually I´m super bubbly and happy so they called and wondered if I was okay. I didn´t notice that other people would notice; and it was nice that they care so much. I went over my notes from when I got set apart, and read my patriarchal blessing, sang a hymn or five, said like 34,978 prayers, and then got a blessing from my District Leader, Elder Rodriguez. WOW. Priesthood power is the bomb. I am so grateful for how close I feel to the Savior. FELT SO MUCH BETTER. We are wearing Christ´s name on our chest. What He went through was never easy. Why should we expect any of this to be easy?! I learned a valuable lesson this week. TRUST TRUST TRUST. Dang, I learn so much every day, it’s crazy because I go to bed a different person than who I wake up as.
Me and our zona (Zone) with Hermana Richardson and her daughter Andrea
Well, our investigator Waria is progressing very very well! We found him earlier this month and he always wants to know more and more. He came to both sessions of conference and church twice!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He always has such great questions and he truly understands how the gospel can change his life, and he is willing to make the change. Looks like he´s going to get baptized ! YAY! He wants to get baptized in Lago San Pablo, because he´s a big nature lover (Pacha mama, aka mother earth) and wants to be in tuneeeee. (yeahhh, man) Anyways, he truly understands it’s a covenant with the Lord, and has put a lot of importance into it.
Favorite family ever. The Ruiz fam. (and Wairia, our investigator in the orange.)
Oh yeah, Miguel put his MISSION PAPERS IN YAYAYAYYY!!!! So proud of him. I’m glad he is not only active, but starting his papers! YAY.
We are really gonna work hard on lecciones con miembro (lessons with members) and asistencia (asistance) this week, as well as a noche de hogar for jovenes (Family Home Evening for Youth) to try and recruit more hermanadores. GOALS ARE MY FAVORITE. I love love love setting goals and then bite sized mini ones to achieve the big one. It's all about attitude and obedience. And reliance on the Lord, of course.
Waaa this cambia (transfer) is flying by... Only like 2.5 weeks left! I can´t believe I have already been here for almost 3 months. I want time to slow down! STOPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPP AHHHHHHH.
I love my companions so much they’re such great people and I know that the Lord wants us to be together to learn and progress alongside each other!! I love love love Peguche!!! There is so much I want to do! I know that the Lord has a plan for each and every one of the people we come in contact with! I love this work SO much!! I know it isn’t easy, but it is always worth it. Like Hermana Richardson says, discouragement is Satan’s biggest and most effective tool. I was remembering the Expiacion (Atonement) and Obra Misional (Missionary Work) video we were shown when I arrived. Here´s something that Elder Holland said. (y'all can look It up on YouTube I'm sure) It’s not doctrine or anything; it’s his personal opinion, just to be clear.
“On occasion you may ask, Why is this so hard?? Why doesn’t it go better? Why isn’t it easier? Why do they reject us? Can’t they see this?... I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation was never easy. Why would we believe, why would we think, that it would be easy for us when it was never easy for Him? How could we bear a testimony of the Atonement if we have never known of such an experience? We are Disciples of Christ, this is true. But that means we must be prepared to walk something of the path He walked, to feel something, something, a little, of the pain He felt. To at least, occasionally, sometime in your mission shed one of the tears of sorrow that He shed. I am not saying we experience anything similar to what Christ experienced - that would be presumptuous and frankly, sacrilegious But I believe that missionaries, to come to know truth, repentance, to come to salvation, to come to know the price that has to be paid, will have to pay a token of that same price. It will only be a token, but I believe it has to be paid. So why isn´t it easy? Remember you’re not the first one to ask that. Someone a lot greater, and a lot better, asked it a long time ago. When you struggle, when you are rejected, you are standing shoulder to shoulder to the best life this world has known, the only pure and perfect missionary, Jesus Christ. You have every reason to stand tall.”
What a privilege to be a missionary and wear Christ´s name on my chest, to be a representative of Him. Every time I watch that video I cry. I love Christ. I am so so thankful for His gran sacrificio expiatorio (great atoning sacrifice) as it says in the Living Christ. I love this work. I am eternally grateful to be here talking about nothing but the gospel all day every day. I want everyone to feel the peace and love I feel!!!!!!
A quote that helped me this week:
“Esta vida es una experiencia en cuanto a confiar profundamente: CONFIAR EN JESUCRISTO, en Sus enseñanzas y en nuestra capacidad, guiados por el Santo Espiritu, de obedecer las enseñanzas que nos daran felicidad ahora y una existencia eterna significativa y de supremo gozo. CONFIAN QUIERE DECIR OBEDECER VOLUNTARIAMENTE desde el principio sin saber el fin (Prov 3:5-7). Para producir fruto, tu confianza en el Señor debe ser mas fuerte y duradera que la que tengas en tus propias ideas y experiencia… Si confias en El, si ejerces la fe en el, El te ayudara.” –Elder Richard G. Scott “La Confianza en el Señor” Liahona January '96.
Thank you so much for all y'alls support and love. FIND Y'ALLS WARD MISSIONARIES AND GO WITH THEM TO A LESSON WITH AN INVESTIGATOR THIS WEEK. Guaranteed they’ll fall in love with you, especially if you give them a reference too, heheheh.
HAVE A FAAAANTASTIC WEEK!!!!