Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Life is a rollercoaster

Hi everyone, hope all is well!  Life here in Tuxpan is getting really hot. We are starting to sweat ... a lot ... cursed humidity.  But I'm surviving just fine, my companion as well!

This week was filled with ups and downs just like a rollercoaster and it was mainly focused on finding new people to teach. The people we did have in teaching weren't progressing and as a missionary we have to find the people who will progress by keeping their commitments (reading, praying, going to chuch, etc). My companion and I got really frustrated because well we were finding people but none of them wanted to go to church, so we just came to the point where we just didn't know where to look.

I talked to my Mission President about it in interviews and the advice he gave me has changed the way we work.  He said "often we don't see the hand of the Lord in our lives until we have reached our extremities."  Meaning that the Lord often wants us to show our diligence and obedience to Him even up to 110% and that's when we will start seeing the results and the fruits of our labors.  Well my companion and I found ourselves at our extremities because it seemed like we had tried everything and looked every where with no luck.

So in our much need, maybe even desperation, we knelt down and offered a humble prayer to God and ask Him to guide us to these people that we knew were waiting to be found.  A couple minutes after the prayer my companion and I had the same impression, to go visit a house that was actually only 3 blocks away from our house.

We went straight away and thats when we found Guadalupe.  He was outside cleaning his yard and we contacted him and well he let us in and thats when he had told us that he was had just left his former christian church and has been looking and praying to find the true church of God!  Well that's exactly what every missionary loves to hear.  Hahaha and we responded we could definitely help him do that! We taught him the restoration of the gospel, that Christ's original church had been lost for many years but has been restored by a living prophet and that evidence of this can be found in a a sacred book of scripture called the Book of Mormon. When we got done teaching him that his face started to change and illuminate with the light of Christ! It was an amazing and powerful spiritual experience! We gave him a Book a Mormon and he started reading it before we left his house!  That experience truly strengthened my testimony that this is the lord work and the message we bring truly changes and blesses lives!

The Lord in the end blessed us just as we were about to give up all hope, because He wanted us to go a little bit further, and keep pushing a just a bit more to reach new height and to humble us to new lows.  I invite you all to do the same, to try harder, keep pushing, especially when we are on the verge of giving up.  Put your trust in Him always, keep confident in the fact that all things that we pass through on this earth are for our good and experience.

I love you all so much and I love the Savior and His gospel! You're are all children of a loving Heavenly Father and He has not sent here to fail, but to succeed in everlasting glory! Take care!

PS I ate a coconut for the first time this week, it was a weird experience..

PPS This is me at a ward activity. I kind of stick out.

Conference and New Transfer

Hey friends and fam! Sorry for keeping you guys out of the loop for a while, life has been flying by! Well first and foremost transfers have arrived and Elder Bravo and I are staying together again for the 3rd transfer and well let's just say we've been together.  We're thinking about having our wedding in July. Hahahaha lul. Not really, but he's cool and super smart and taught me a lot.  It's kind of funny because in Christmas we were companions and we called our families together and well now that we're going to be together one more transfer it means we're going to talk to families again together on Mothers Day hahaha!

I loved General Conference so much!  The talks were so inspired and also really direct and exactly what everyone needed to hear in this day in time!  I am so grateful we have inspired leaders, prophets, seers and revelators for our day that warn, direct and admonish us just as in days of old. It is truly a blessing to listen and receive personal revelation from the mouthpiece of the Lord. And to hear the guidance and warnings they give us that we may be better protected from the things that keep us from returning back to the presence of our Father.

I had so many favorite talks: from the first talk by President Eyring that made me cry I felt to that last talk by Elder Holland that left me inspired and ready to make many more changes in my life.  There were talks specified to the needs of every person no matter the situation or the trial he or she may be facing.  Some of my personal favorites were Elder Donald Hallstorm's talk about our divine identity as children of God,  Elder Gary Stevenson's talk about the priesthood,  Elder Renlund's talk about drawing near unto the Savior,  Elder Bednar's talk about always retaining a remission of our sins, Sister Bonnie Oscarson's talk laying it down about how the church is true, and President Monson's talk about priesthood power.  They are definitely talks I will be studying in the near future. if you haven't had the chance to see conference I invite you to do so and see and hear what the Lord wants us to do so that we may keep ourselves better unspotted from the world.

It's getting extremely hot here in Tuxpan and well, my skin is turning into a burnt marshmallow and its just getting hotter.  The people here are a lot more hard hearted than in Martinez, but we are having some success with the families we are teaching! This last Sunday we baptized Sindri, one of the daughters of the Hernandez family we are teaching.  The rest of her family has been really reluctant as of late to make the decision to follow Christ through baptism.  But Elder Bravo and I are fasting and praying for miracles!

I love being a missionary and I love this work! I love the chance our Father has given us to repent from the mistakes we've made and start a new every week by taking the sacrament. I'm so grateful for the Savior's sacrifice and being on His errand has made me feel so much closer to Him as I apply His atonement daily. He is the only way back to our Father in heaven and if we choose to follow Him and His example we will find a lasting happiness and peace in our lives and the strength to conquer anything that brings us down in this life. I love Him! I love repentance! I love sharing what I've found with others! Love you all have a great week!