Sunday, August 4, 2013

"We Lived With God Before This Life"


What a great week! Wow the time just flies right by. Okay where to start? Some days here are so great and we do so much, and then some days nobody is home or nobody wants to talk to us. But really we are blessed because there is so much work to do here. I am basically living in Mexico. It is so cool. The only people I know that speak English are the other missionaries here. (well and the Spanish speaking people usually know some, so when we really can't understand each other we use spanlish :)). Everything is going really well though. I absolutely love my companion. We get along SOO well and we have lots and lots of fun together! We work well together too! 

 Okay... highlights of the week:

 MANUEL!!! Later that day after he texted that he didn't want to talk to us, we responded that night and just ignored what he said and reminded him about the lesson we had planned with him for the next day and he said sounds great! I guess he was just having a hard day and was starting to get discouraged, but he's still going strong. We taught him twice this week I think? But they always go sooo well! The Spirit is really strong and he has soo many questions. He also loves to talk. A lot. Sometimes too much, but its all good. Yesterday we just had to cut him off. When he talked too long, I would just put a scripture in front of him and make him read it.
Yesterday, we taught the plan of salvation (the first half), and it was seriously the greatest thing ever. EVER. I had never taught the plan of salvation to someone who had never heard about it before, and it really showed me how much I have taken my knowledge of the gospel for granted. When we told him that we lived with God before this life and that God has a plan for him, he was absolutely shocked. He was like "What?? I always thought we never existed before this life! How do you know all of this? Do you really think this is true?" He was shocked and amazed and so excited. It was so amazing. He was really intrigued by it all. You can just tell that he believes all that we say to him. He is really bad about following up on his commitments, but yesterday we explained the importance of reading the scriptures and how God will be able to answer his prayers through the scriptures, and I think he is pretty firm that he will actually read this time. He reallllllllyyyy wants to know about the after life (because death is one of his biggest fears) but we didn't have time to talk about it, so I told him to read Alma 40 and that it will answer some of his questions.

On Tuesday, we talked to him about faith in Jesus Christ, and I invited him to be baptized. He said yes! Yayyyy! We don't have a date set yet, but the rule in our mission is that investigators have to go to church 3x in a row before they can be baptized. (This can be really hard though because EVERYONE works on Sundays, even members because they are really poor and need to work all that they can, and its hard for them to find jobs). He said he would try to change his schedule to come this week. He has so many questions and is really eager to learn. He is scared about all the rules we have though, but we are trying to teach him how the commandments are not restrictions, but really things that set us free.

Other investigators that we are working with are “Maria” and “Juan”. We really just want them to start being obedient and exercise their faith to prepare for their baptisms. We went to their house to teach them yesterday and Ana was preparing a huge dinner for us. (after we already ate a big dinner at a member’s house.... believe it or not FISH, and it really wasn't that bad! yes my mission is already changing me :) ). She always tells us that all of the other missionaries wouldn't eat her food so she thought her house was too ugly or her food wasn't good enough, so of course we had to eat it. And then she piled the rice on my plate. And then after Juan served her rice, she said it was too much for her to eat, so she put the extra on my plate... and then we ate super yummy taquitos and this steak-type stuff... and she told me to try it so I took a little piece, but she said that wasn't big enough so she gave me a huge one. hahahaha lets just say I almost exploded yesterday. It was really good though! They really are the sweetest, nicest people and I love them so much.

We have been trying to visit and work with all of the members lately, especially the less active members. They really need our help in this ward. The new branch presidency is really eager to strengthen this branch and they really want to work with us, so that is a huge blessing. There is just so much to do. We visited a few less actives members this week and invited them to come back to church. They are all the nicest people. One family, the Gastelums, the grandparents are active (when they don't have work). One grandchild Abril has been coming to all of the young women's activities and so I think we are going to start teaching her soon! And when we went to their house, we invited their 8 year old grandson to come to church, and he came yesterday! He is adorable. 

We had a few referrals from the visitor's center this week, but one is already hiding from us and the other we haven't been able to catch home. We found a potential though while trying to contact them, and he already is reading the book of Mormon. He doesn't have a permanent home or a phone, so it will be hard to find him again. 

We have been trying to organize activities to increase fellowshipping in the ward and to just help make the ward stronger, especially the recent converts. We are trying to have a family history night and a scripture study night one day a week. We tried the scripture study night, but not many people knew about it, but it went well. They announced both in church yesterday, so hopefully we get much more people! We just want to help people understand the importance of studying the scriptures and teach them effective study ways. It's also hard because many of the people here do not have much education and so they can't read very well. But we are hoping that this will help people! We are also putting together a member profile binder with pictures of the families, hobbies, availability times, etc so that we can get to know the members better and use them in our missionary work.  

Really I absolutely love my mission. I feel so blessed to be able to spend this time of my life serving the Lord. I know that this is His work and His gospel. As I study every day, I can just feel the truthfulness of it so strongly. As I teach people who have never heard of these things, I see more clearly how true it is and how blessed I am to know about it. The gospel truly is the answer to all of our questions or problems. We can always turn to God and Jesus Christ with whatever we are going through. The scriptures hold so many treasures in them and when we read with the Spirit, we can receive direct revelation for the things that we need. I love this gospel so much! Remember how blessed we are to have it, and be sure to do things to treasure it every single day :) Our lives are SO much better when we live by the gospel because Heavenly Father can help us so much more.  

Really I have already seen huge blessings in my life. Heavenly Father is protecting me so much. I haven't gotten sunburnt at all. I don't get hot (but I get really really sweaty... its gross). Members driving by give us water. My diabetes has been wonderful. Like hardly any problems at all (especially is a miracle because I never really know how much insulin to take because I never know what we will be eating for dinner, and usually they give us juice). I am always safe on my bike. Just things like that. God is really taking care of me.

The work is hard, but its worth it. Sometimes I can't understand what anybody is saying, but I am learning. It's really funny some people I can understand more or less perfectly, and some people I can't understand them at all. Ha ha I don't know why but I guess everyone speaks a little differently. I am learning more and more every day. I realized this week that when I don't understand them, I can just say that and usually they help me figure it out (instead of just pretending like I know what they are saying ha ha :) ).

Thanks so much for all the love and support.

No comments:

Post a Comment