31 de marzo 2014
Well another week has gone by here in Paita. This is the start of week number 20 here. It seems like I've been here forever. I'm getting a little tired of walking in the same streets day after day, but it's okay. I know that there is a reason that I'm here. For some reason, Puerto Paita is where my Heavenly Father needs me.
This last week started pretty great. Monday night after p-day we had a family night with the Davila family. Their son was baptized in December. Their whole family is members now, and they're super great! The family night went super well until they brought out the dessert. A giant glass of mango juice that they had just blended up in the blender. I have tried tons of new fruits here in Peru. And I like almost all of them. I’m still trying to learn to like mango.
Tuesday was pretty great. In the morning Elder Rengifo and I were out knocking on doors trying to find some new investigators. We knocked on one door that was already open. The lady was sitting inside her house and when she heard us knock on the door she got up from her seat and ran to the door and slammed it in our faces. I just sat there and laughed. That was the first time that that has happened to me here on the mission. Lots of times people just say that they're busy and shut the door. But this lady didn't even say anything to us and we didn't even get a chance to say anything to her. Pretty crazy.
Tuesday afternoon we had a couple of pretty great lessons. We had one with a super cool guy. His wife and kids are members but he isn't. He has listened to missionaries before, but doesn't have a testimony of the church. So right now we are focusing on helping him receive a testimony of the Book of Mormon. With him, we read 3 Nefi 11. He really liked that part. The spirit was super strong in that lesson. I think he was able to feel it. And he promised us that he would pray that night about what he had read.
After that lesson we went and taught another investigator. I feel bad for the guy. He has so many obstacles and trials in his life. He was almost baptized in December, but his wife fell and broke her hip and they had to move to the upper part of Paita. And then he moves back here and is super excited to come to church again and then some kind of bug bites his arm and he was in the hospital for 2 weeks because his arm was so swollen. And when he finally gets released from the hospital, his daughter breaks her femur and there was a death in the family. It always seems like one thing after another. He is the sweetest old guy though. We just have to keep trying to help him feel of the spirit in his life and help him through these trials.
Thursday Lauren hit the 1 year mark of her mission. I can hardly believe that it was an entire year ago when we dropped her off at the MTC. At that time September of 2014 seemed so far away. 18 months. But now it's only 6 months away. Time absolutely flies by. But probably the best part of Thursday was that after our district meeting I got a new mattress! I was sooooooooooooooooooooooooo happy. The mattress that I had in our room was not very good. I think it was new when dad was serving his mission in Guatemala. It was horrible. Every morning I woke up with a sore neck and a sore back. I was pretty much bouncing off the walls with excitement!
|So excited for my new mattress!|
One crazy thing that happened Friday was when we were teaching a lesson and the spirit was super strong and then all of the sudden a bee flew in the house and stung the 9 year old girl in the head and she started screaming and kicking and everything. And when that happened, the spirit left. jajajaja. That was a super crazy experience.
Friday was a great day. Except that we didn't have water. The best part of that day was definitely while I was reading in Alma 8. I was feeling discouraged. The missionary work here in Puerto Paita is rough. The people don't want to listen to us. It's super hard to find new people to teach. And sometimes it's hard to work day after day and not feel like you are having any success. Alma 8 was written just for me. It's when Alma goes to Ammonihah to preach the gospel.
Vs 9. Now Satan had gotten great hold upon the hearts of the people of the city of Ammonihah; therefore they would not hearken unto the words of Alma.
Vs 10. Nevertheless Alma labored much in the spirit, wrestling with God in mighty prayer, that he would pour out his Spirit upon the people who were in the city; that he would also grant that he might baptize them unto repentance.
Vs 11. Nevertheless, they hardened their hearts, saying unto him: Behold, we know that thou art Alma; and we know that thou art high priest over the church which thou hast established in many parts of the land, according to your tradition; and we are not of thy church, and we do not believe in such foolish traditions.
And after that Alma was pretty discouraged. He said "they cast me out and I was about to set my back towards this land forever." But an angel came to him and told him that he had to return and upon returning, Amulek was waiting for him. And together they left and taught with power.
Vs 32. And it came to pass that they went forth and began to preach and to prophesy unto the people, according to the spirit and power which the Lord had given them.
That chapter was just what I was needing at that time. It doesn't matter if the people are going to accept the message that we have or not. The Lord has commanded me to go out and preach unto this people. And honestly, Alma and Amulek didn't have much success in Ammonihah. But I don't think that means that they were bad missionaries. They did what the Lord commanded them to do, and that is ultimately what is really important.
Saturday morning we woke up and there still wasn't water. There was a problem with the water system in our apartment building and the water wasn't working in any of the rooms. But there was one water faucet on the roof that was working. So at 7 in the morning we got to climb up to the roof and fill up buckets of water and then carry them down to our room so that we could shower and wash dishes. That was pretty fun. jaja, just kidding. It wasn't too fun. All that morning there were plumbers in our apartment trying to figure out what the problem was. Luckily by about 11 they had it figured out and there was water again. Being out of water stinks.
Sunday was the best part of the week. Sacrament meeting was great. It was fast and testimony meeting because next week is General Conference. But the best part of Sunday was that afternoon when we went and taught a lesson to a 12 year old boy. His parents aren't members, but his older sister is and his aunts and uncles and his grandparents are. And he lives with them. He has been coming to church these past couple weeks and we went and taught him about baptism and he wants to be baptized! What an answer to our prayers that was. We have been working forever here in Puerto Paita and we have had little, or next to no success, but finally we have someone who we are teaching who wants to be baptized! I'm super excited for him! Right now his baptism is scheduled for the 26th of April!
Overall, it was a pretty great week. Had a lot of ups and downs like normal, but it was good! I'm so grateful to be a missionary here in El Puerto de Paita. There is nowhere that I would rather be. I know this church is true. No doubt about it!
Love you guys! Thanks for Everything!
That picture of snow looks so sweet. I want to roll around in that in shorts and a t-shirt. I'm so sick of this hot weather here in Paita! And about General Conference. Yeah we get to watch it live. I'm pretty sure that it is in Spanish though. I think since this isn't a stake and there isn't a stake center, I don't think there is going to be a room for gringos. Luckily I don't think I'll have trouble understanding it! I can pretty much understand everything now. There are words here and there that I don't know, but it's okay. Love you!
Lauren, I'm so happy for the family that you are teaching! Teaching families is the best. I hope that I will be able to help at least 1 family reach the point of baptism on my mission! Thanks for being such a great example! And I'm jealous of the fact that there are kangaroos. That would be so cool to have them interrupt our dinner. I don't think it's going to happen here though..... jaja. Love you tons!