Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The Unexpected Call

I just wanted to say Happy Father's day to all the men out there and for being such great examples in so many ways.  I also want to say thank you for the birthday wishes :).  I had so many surprises and one very comp and I were laying in bed and ready to go to sleep when the phone started to ring.  I thought, "How weird"!  When I answered, the Elders said, "Hermana....we have some news for you... Se va...You're getting transferred to Mar Del Plata in the area, Balcarse".  I thought, this is a joke, but no I'll be leaving Monday afternoon.  I'm not sure how to explain how I feel, but the Lord has something prepared.  I'm sure excited for my comp and her new companion to have mucho exito because we found some great investigators whom the Lord placed in our path and are progressing very fast! 

Cute Little Grandmas

The Falda prepared a wonderful birthday cake for me and was filled with tons of "Dulce de leche".  Which is amazing and super "UNHEALTHY"! :)  So unhealthy that it didn't pass the health inspection in the states and it only exists here JaJa.  It was a day full of mixed feelings of happy and sad tears of saying my farewells.  At night, I got a phone call from President asking to come to their house and right when they opened the door, Hermana Parreno sang, "Happy Birthday" in ENGLISH! Ha  Then grabs me in a great big hug and slaps three giant kisses on my cheek.  Then she comes running out with ice cream with a firework on top!!! 

Tonight, they showed us a video they are going to share with all the missionaries before they leave this mission.  Once again, a day filled with lots of emotions of both happy and sad tears.  I'm definitely going to miss The Falda and I will never forget it!  I'm excited to get out and do something new with a new area, new people, new companion.....which I will be raining :)  Not sure where she's from or who she is just yet...but I'm ready to work hard and have mucho exito!

I know that this is the true gospel of Jesus Christ and that He loves us dearly.  He has a plan for every one of His children at the right time and right place.  I'm so grateful to be an instrument in HIS hands.  I've never grown so close to my Heavenly Father and His love.  The key to eternal life is the atonement.  He died for us, but He was resurrected.  He lives and He loves us.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Homework:  Read Jacob 5 and pluck away any "bad" branches in your life and grow a better/healthier garden :) (Life) so that you can obtain that good fruit (blessings).

Monday, June 15, 2015

Yo Se Que Vive Mi Senor

Que Semana!  So on Wednesday, my comp and I were tracting and as we started knocking on a door, three dogs come running out.  One barking from behind and two behind the gate in the front.  The littlest dog squeezes itself through and now is barking on the side and here I am paying attention to the big dog behind the gate because they can definitely fit their heads out of the gate a pretty good distance and get you if you are not careful....But as I made the mistake of paying attention to the wrong dog....!  I scream.... OUCH!....It bit me!  That little dog that squeezed itself through the fence took a good chomp at my lef...!  Well, the owner poked his head out for a good 2 seconds and says, "shhh" and walks back in.  Se we finally made i out of there with a fast escape and I realized it's the little ones you gotta look out for.

Little dog bit my leg!

Proof that I walk A LOT!!

This week we also found a reference of someone who is from the states who moved here about a year ago.  When we knocked on his door, he found out we were Americans and came running to the door....He was super glad to be speaking a language he actually knew.  Haha As we left, I pulled out my hand and he says, "Okay, the good American handshake, I like that, because here everyone just gives you a kiss on the cheek."  We also found an awesome family of 5 their dad, grandpa and 3 kids...The first day we taught them, the kids were "everywhere" and I mean EVERYWHERE.  I wondered, how do we get them all to listen?  So I said  quick prayer in my head and we ended up teaching the grandpa and the dad and a miracle happened.  All the kids got quiet and came to the closing prayer.  I thought, Oh, No, but as we taught the kids to fold their arms and close their eyes, by the time I finished saying amen.....I opened my eyes and here they were with their eyes closed and folded arms :)  What an experience.  We were super excited to be working more with the family and bring them to church!  

This week, we had a lot of success in finding new people but a lot of our investigators were sick or out of town.  I learned something super big this week....Yesterday, we we were getting ready to go search for our investigators and bring them to church, I was super excited because so many had said they were coming and as we left and knocked, called and continued to search, we ended up walking to the church by ourselves and I was so sad....As we continued to walk, I thought maybe there will be a ton of people at church.  As we got closer there weren't any cars....not ONE car next to the church and my heart dropped.   As we walked through the doors, I looked in and in total, there were 7 members.  But to our surprise, God had answered a prayer and Francisca an investigator we have been working with was sitting down with her hymn book ready for Sacrament meeting.  As we sat down, my heart filled up but was scared and worried because no one was at church.  And especially Francisca realizing it as well and I thought maybe people are sick or out of town....making up any excuse I could think of until I realized, I just need to make this Sacrament the best.  I asked God for peace and He gave me peace, but more than that, He gave us the spirit as it was time to bare testimonies.  There was a lot of silence, but when there was silence, that's when I could hear the spirit the most.  I realized that just about everyone got up to bare their testimony.  Francisca whispered in my ear, "only member can give their testimonies?"  And I said, "No Hermana" as she sat there a little longer I said, "God wants to hear your testimony", and she looked at me and said, "You really think so?"  I said, "I would love to hear it as well, don't be nervous", and she says back, "I'm nervous and I'm going to start crying."  About 2 minutes later, Francisca got the faith and stood up and bore a wonderful, powerful testimony.  As she sat back down, tears flowed through her eyes.  After another 10 minutes past of pure silence, I whispered, "I like to think about God and everything He's given me during this time.  The spirit is very strong in the room today."  As she agreed, I sat there and thought about a hymn, "I Know That My Savior Lives", I tried searching for it and I looked at Francisca.  She already had it opened, "Yo Se Que Vive Mi Senor"  And she looked at me and she said, "I know , I was thinking about it too!"  As sacrament ended, to our surprise, we sang for the closing hymn, "Yo se que vive mi Senor".

This was a Sunday I will never forget.  One thing I learned most from this experience was that it doesn't matter about my wants and desires to have a ton of people at church....worrying and trying to wish for something better.  God knows what is best in His own time.  No importa that there were 10 people at church.  Make every moment your best, make something good out of it by changing your thought to God's thought and actions - don't be preoccupied!  I know that this is God's church, I know that He lives, that He loves us and we are His sons and daughters.  He is here.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Job 19:25
25 For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:

Homework:  This week, focus on the positive of every challenge that come your way. :)

Monday, June 8, 2015

A Wide and Extensive Sphere of Action

The prayers have been answered.....I'm in The Falda!! and I'm with my hija :) I couldn't believe it!  (5 transfers) in ONE area!  I couldn't keep the excitement in.  Not to mention Hermana Martin came running down the hall at church to give us a great big hug when she heard the news :).  I think I know just about everyone that passes down the street and every house and who olives in it, including their dog@  But, "no importa", God has a plan and He's got work for me here.  My comp and I are also going to work a lot in "Pauhue", this transfer to get it started and going, and I'm super pumped because we've had a ton of success this week.  Domingo, we had an investigator named Eduardo, and we've been working with him for a while and finally dragged him to church.  Guess what?....He loved it!  Nestor, whom we are still currently with has become a missionary and inviting people to church and sharing his experiences he's had while meeting the missionaries.  :)  Also, Andres the chico from Pauhue left for vacation and told his mom that, "when the hermanas come, tell them I took the Book of Mormon with me and that I'm reading it".  I can't wait to start teaching him and his family again when he returns.

We've just had so many wonderful experiences here in the Falda and I'm excited to work hard this next transfer with ALL my heart.  I'm super excited and blessed for the opportunities God has placed in our path thus far in the Falda and hope to fulfill His duties.

Exodus 19:5

I also just have to mention how much I just LOVE my mission President and his wife and how close I have become to them.  They have seriously become "my parents".  The other day, my companion and I left to ask President a question to a project he has me working on and as we came in the house, Hermana Parreno was making dinner for a reunion and she looks at both my comp and I and says, ..."can you do me a HUGE favor and cut these onions for me?....I just did my make-up and I don't want to cry and get it all messed up."  So here is my comp and I and President cutting onions as she is cooking them on the stove.  As I was busy cutting onions and talking, I hear hermana Parreno asking, "Your not crying?"  "I'm dying over here!"....The thing was, I couldn't even smell the onion.  It didn't even phase the three of us.  Well, then she hands everything over to President and leaves the room and comes back and I suddenly turn around and see.....two thick, black streaks of mascara running down her cheeks!  I suddenly looked at President and he just shakes his head and asks acts like it didn't even phase him.  Ha, as my comp just stands there laughing! :)  It's always a good laugh at the house of the Parrenos.  It's been such a privilege to have them as our Presidents and I can't imagine any other person in their place.  They have such strong testimonies and they know their purpose as a President and have done wonders to this mission and to their missionaries.  I will never forget what they have done for me and having them be role models in my eyes.  This next month we are receiving new mission Presidents as the Parrenos will be going back to Espana.  I'm super sad to be saying goodbye, but keeping my head up and looking forward to meeting the new Presidents.  The Lord has some wonderful plans in store and I'm looking forward to having lunch with them every week. :) Jaja

Homework:  Share or watch the video, "The Restoration" with someone and share your testimony of Joseph Smith and what the gospel has done for you in your life.