So this week has been crazy and wonderful! Some highlights: 9-20-14
Tuesday: One year cake!
Wednesday: Hermana Albornoz and I began our branch's mission program of "Embarked in the Work of Salvation"! We made a huge poster, swimming in glitter for days, and prepared a branch calendar of the branch activities that we are going to begin. We're thinking about campfire nights on the river, cake competitions, game nights...anything we can to unite the branch! (If your ward or branch had any cool activities, let me know! We'd love to put them into play!)
Thursday: Moved to our old house that has a bajillion mirrors. Any Narcissist would love it. There are mirrors every way you turn. Made our way out to a tiny town to visit a lady named Rosa. We talked about the law of chastity and how civil union just doesn´t cut it. Her friend, Carlos, stayed a bit and decided he and his wife will stop living together and get married so they can better obey God's commandments. Eek! They also gave us like a thousand mandarins. And they were delicious. We missed the last bus that passes through Catarama and God gave us another little miracle with a Evangelist pastor stopped and gave us a lift. God is SO aware of our needs.
Friday: Moved back to our old house, due to miscommunication. That leaves the Narcissist house to the incoming Elders, hahaha Also, we painted our branch president's house and ate five times over. We passed by Gustavo, our investigator that has read the Book of Mormon three times and the Doctrine and Covenants and the Gospel Principles book and is finally preparing for baptism (yay!) and shared some pinapple cake for his birthday. Saturday: Met a little lady named Lourdes.At first, she had a wall up and made sure that she loved to listen to all religions but was not into that baptizing stuff. The Spirit guided our words and we learned about her daughter who had passed away recently, and her heart was softened. She then took us behind her house and made her son get guava, or as I like to call it, "cotton fruit". Guava is a long, green sword looking thing and inside are these big, black seeds covered in a very sweet cotton fur. You break the sword covering and you eat it. And it's amazing. On our way to our next appointment, a man cutting down a tree, pulled out a trash bag and filled it with perfume-worthy flowers. Then we ate patacones with the Vinces family that night and watched their 18 year old daughter, Daniella, light up with interest as we introduced the Book of Mormon. She started searchingthrough the book from front to back. She even read the publication date. She's amazing.
Hermana Albornoz, our ward mission leader and I all shared talks about the Work of Salvation. Although we had very little time to prepare, I feel that Heavenly Father really guided our thoughts and spiritual insights. Hermana Albornoz talked about Finding People to Teach, I talked about Retaining Recent Converts and Brother Veloz talked about Resucing the Less Actives. In my talk, I felt impressed to share the story of Tony. The little, blind Chinese woman in our ward that walked past the church one day, sat in on a sacrament meeting (and does not speak any English), felt the Spirit and decided to be baptized. Because my mother was a faithful visiting teacher and friend, always stopping by Tony's house in the mornings to bring her to church and memorzing bits and pieces of Chinese to communicate with her, Tony is active and strengthening her testimony every day.
In the second hour, we felt impressed to share the Restoration with the Gospel Principles class. Everyone had a pamphlet to read and they all participated. Our GOLDEN investigators, the Vinces family (who ALL came to church!) were all very attentive and the Spirit was strong. After church, they all accepted to prepare for baptism this 11th of October!
The third hour, we joined the Relief Society and the Priesthood and trained them in how to share the gospel. We even did practices with the members (us pretending to be their neighbors or friends) using the "Family: A Proclamation" pamphlets! And all of the members are more excited to get involved in the work! Hermana Albornoz and I had barely briefed our plan for this training, but the Lord helped us so much! We were needed the entire day in meetings and I felt like my brain was going to fry from over-usage and too much multi-.tasking. But as always, the Lord was aware of my needs and sent immediate comfort and basically...super natural abilities.
I am so grateful to have a God that knows our needs.
when feeling discouraged or down or overwhelmed...pray. It workds miracles.