Bueno, this week was amazing! Hard and great. I’ve noticed that I have adopted many weird Latino habits that kind of scare me and that will scare all of you when I get home, I just know it. First of all, ketchup on Pizza. Ew, who am I? Second, we all know that music that plays on the Latin radio stations that we accidently pass and let play for a few seconds as a joke to annoy everyone in the car… NOW I DON’T EVEN MIND IT AND I ACTUALLY RECOGNIZE THE SONGS FROM HAVING HEARD THE SAME ONES OVER AND OVER IN THE STREET AND THE BUSES. Once again WHO am I? Thirdly, lots and lots of Spanish phrases and expressions that slip even when I’m talking in English. Also, I am forgetting lots of English words and I find myself having to translate from SPANISH in my head when I want to explain something in English. And it always comes out sounding dumb in English, haha. There are so many more things that I could tell you about, like my love and craving for corn tortillas and tamalitos and everything’s better with beans and tomatoes and onions and lime, and lastly, remember in one of my first emails that I wrote about Hno. Hernandez, how he puckered his lips to point at something with his mouth and we were dying because it was the strangest thing we’d ever seen? Super scared I’m gonna have that habit for the rest of my life, hahah, we all do it here, its just normal. Kiss to point.
BUENO, this week was great and I feel newly motivated to keep working hard and to find ways to work smarter!! Partly because of an incredible multi-zona we had with President Smith on Thursday! First of all, President Smith is the best. He is not only working with his missionaries, but with every single stake, branch, district, ward, all of the ward mission leaders, EVERYONE, hahah, he has has various meetings and devotionals with the leaders of the wards and stakes here and everyone is fired up about working HARD in this amazing work! President talked about the vision of the Lord, and edifying His church. We discussed helping EVERYONE, not just investigators, to really become converts. The process of conversion is one of our whole lives, and if we are not constantly working to change ourselves, to become more like Christ, and to serve Him until the eternities, our conversions will not be sufficient. We read 3 Nephi 11 together and discussed each verse of Christ’s manifestation to the Nephites. When we finished, he asked us the questions that I want to ask you all as well! Have we thrust our hands in the Lord’s side? Have we felt the marks in his hands and in his feet? Do we know with a CERTAINTY that He is Christ, our Lord? Are we listening to His voice and UNDERSTANDING? We can, and we HAVE to understand. I’ve thought about each one of you and I hope that you are always always working each day to become more converted to the Lord. 🙂 From that comes TRUE happiness!!!!! I PROMISE! President Smith also talked about what it really means to teach for repentance, and HOW we do it. I felt strongly the desire and necessity to help all, members and investigators alike, the doctrine of repentance and how much we NEED to truly repent and become more like our Savior every single day. The meeting lasted for 6 or so hours and I left feeling inspired and also very weighed down with a LOT of responsibility in the area where I am serving! But while we were sitting in the conference, I received a comforting thought. Sometimes I tend to be hard on myself (ok more than sometimes) and in some ways it’s good because I push myself and really take into thought ALL that I have to do, but other times I just need to remember that I DON’T need to rely solely on my OWN efforts, on MYSELF. This is the work of the Lord, and I need to depend on HIM. I have been trying harder to really focus on what HE wants me to do. Without His help I promise that this work would be impossible.
On Sunday, sacrament meeting was really special for me. Not so much because of the messages because we don’t understand a lot (just words here and there that they use in Spanish!) but because I really am gaining a strong testimony of the power of the sacrament! It is SO vitally important that we are taking the sacrament every week. It cleans us, it gives us new starts, new opportunities, it strengthens us, and more than anything we can feel the love that our Father and Savior have for us! Our ward mission leader is also super excited about working hard and we some great changes made on Sunday AND were invited to ward council for the first time! YAY! We’re out here working hard and I feel blessed to be a missionary! I love this work and I love these people and I LOVE my Savior. I am grateful for all that he did and does for me and I am eternally grateful for His gospel and the happiness it brings in each one of our lives, when we strive to live it and serve the Lord. I love you all and I hope you are all well!!! AND I HOPE YOU’RE ALL EXCITED FOR CONFERENCE THIS WEEKEND! I’m so excited, hahahah.
Love you all!!