Monday, March 10, 2014
It's a magazine that costs 50 cents.
I can´t believe another week has come and gone. I think I start all my emails with surprise at how fast time flies by. But hey, that´s life. What´s life, you might ask...?
This week flew. Monday started out with Consejo de Líderes. I learn so much from my Presidente de Misión, Presidente Torres, every time he speaks. He is incredible. I love the power he has and the inspiration he receives for all of us from our Heavenly Father. I know he is inspired so that we can be guided and help God´s children to find the truth. The message we bring is one of happiness and joy!! If we obey the Gospel, we will be happy! As Kip would say, always and forever. Monday was Carnaval, but no one was in our area, so no one got us wet. Some hermanas who were finishing up the mission came and stayed with us for the night. My companion didn´t think it was real. How could anyone actually finish the mission? Being at the beginning, you think a year and a half (or two years) is foreeeeeever! And that it will never end. But I´m here to tell you, folks, that it does. It goes by fast. Hay que disfrutarlo al máximo y trabajar duro. Moroni 9:6. I can´t believe how fast my time here has gone. I still have a while left, cuidado, but really, I can´t thank God more for this opportunity He has given me to serve His children with all my time, talent, abilities, heart, might, mind, and strength.
Tuesday, the most progressive day of the year, turned out to be the least progressive day of the year. That was the last day of Carnaval, and NO ONE was here! Everyone was still in the playa soaking up the last bit of sun before they had to go to work again on Wednesday. We visited the investigators we had with a fecha bautismal, and then tried to find other people, but with little success. We did get hit by one water balloon, though, while we were leaving our house. And then we were walking on the sidewalk and a cute family drove by. As they slowed down to pass us, they rolled down the window, and shot us with this soapy spray thing. I saw it coming and ran, but my companion got nailed. It was a great day.
The girl who showed up to church and said she wanted to get baptized is named Giovanna. I want to tell you how loving and miraculous God is. He had been preparing her for one year to be led to this moment. I can´t beleive how grateful I am that God thought it wise to lead her to the church right when Hermana Arnold and I were here. Giovanna has a friend who is a member of the church, but part of the Guayaquil Norte mission. He had been telling her for a whole year that she needed to go to church, be baptized, etc. and that that is where she would find her happiness, joy, etc. For about a month now, she has really had desires to go, but something came up every Sunday, so she couldn´t make it. Just last Sunday, she made it. She showed up early, and got to know some of the members. She asked the bishop when she could be baptized, and he told her she had to listen to us first. She asked us when she could be baptized. March 15? Yes. This Saturday, she will be baptized. She is as prepared as can be, and the Spirit is so strong every time we teach her. There are people prepared in this world who want to accept the Gospel NOW. So what we have to do is invite everyone so we can find the chosen ones. I know they´re out there. God is a loving Heavenly Father. His work and His glory is to bring to pass our immortality and eternal life! That´s what He wants for all of us! If we want to be on God´s team, we have to do what He´s doing, and help in this glorious work of Salvation.
On Wednesday, we finally got to know the mom of a kid who wants to be baptized. His dad is a member, returned missionary, and less active. His wife is Catholic, and has listened to the missionaries in the past. They have two teenage sons who also listened to the missionaries before, but the wife never watned them to be baptized. We happened to find this family by a miracle, and the youngest son was so excited when he found out he could be baptized. Wednesday, we got to know the mom and found out that she supports her son in his decision. She realized she couldn´t force another religion on him, and that this is what he really wants to do. This Sunday, the parents and that son came to church together! It was beautiful to see the importance of reactivating menos activos, as well as unifying families. We now just have to help the mom obey the word of wisdom and humble herself enough to join her family in this glorious gospel!!
On Friday, I renewed my visa! I can´t believe it´s already been so long since I got here. March 12 will mark one year from leaving the CCM and arriving in Ecuador (as well as Britt and Shawn´s anniversary!). Time flies. Speaking of holidays: Happy Women´s Day last Saturday, happy Ides of March this Saturday, and Happy Pi Day on Friday (make a pie and eat it in memory of me). On Friday, I talked with some elders who are serving in Loja and they said their neighbor is a girl from NH! They couldn´t remember what part, but her name is Heather. She believes in a greater spirit, but couldn´t accept the divinity of the Book of Mormon and used some pretty profane language with the missionaries. So proud of my state. haha Her heart will be touched some day.
I hope you know how much I love each and everyone of you!!!!!!! Never stop being missionaries! Share the Gospel every day in every way! You will receive greater joy than you ever thought possible!!!!!!!
P.S. MOM!!!!! I GOT YOUR LETTER!!!!!! All the way from November. It was awesome! I love you!!!!!!!!!!!