Buenos tardes amados mios!
So, August is the month for birthdays! Happy birthday shout outs to my beautiful cousin Nycoley and my bestest bud Andre! Happy birthday you guys!! Have such an awesome week and eat lots of cake for me!!
This week has been incredible learning experience for me. I have really learned a ton of the true characteristics of God and Christ. We had a HUGE miracle happen to us on Wednesday. This week, we were challenged to find 15 new people who were willing to talk to us and accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ and be baptized. I honestly was really nervous. I hate not reaching goals and I knew that this wasn't a challenge to get more people to church but to really bring 15 people to know of God's love. Every night when we get home we plan for the things that we will do the next day. We nelt down to pray and my companion offered the prayer. As she prayed I was pondering on the things that we needed to do the next and a very surprising thought entered into my mind. "We are going to find a family of 5 people." It was weird and i tried to shake it but I really couldn't. It was stuck in my head. When my companion ended the prayer I looked at her and to my own surprise I said: Tomorrow, we are going to find a family of 5 people. She smiled and said: "ok!" The only thing I told her about it after that was that we needed to prayer in all of our prayers that we find them, and that they are ready and willing to listen to this amazing message that we have to share.
The next morning we continued praying for this family. My companion and I were 100% certain that this point that we would find this family. We left with hope, diligence, love and a whole lot of faith in our hearts. Our first lesson went well. At 12 we had plans to visit a family that we have taught before. We tried to pay attention to all of the promptings that we may recieve. A sister in the ward called us and asked us to pass by. She wanted a blessing from the elders and also wanted to see us. I was about to tell her that we would pass by her house at that moment but something told me that we needed to see this family. I sked if it was emergency and she said no so I told her we could drop by in an hour. We arrived at the apartment of this family and they werent there. I am not going to lie, I was pretty bummed because I felt that we needed to see this family. As we were about to leave, the neighbors of this family started asking my companion questions and eventually told us to come. I saw that there were 4 people in the room and my hope perked a little bit. Slowly, and one by one, more people began to enter the room and we began to teach. At the height of our lesson there were 8 people listening to us. All I kept saying in my head was: "No way. Nooo way." As we finished our lesson, the gentleman who asked us to come in began telling us a story. He told us that he is from Acapulco but for the moment lives in a city called Chiapas. He told us that he came to visit his family (specifically his sister) this message: "Your family needs to be closer to God. You need to bring God into your lives and 2 angels are going to come." I got goosebumps and my heart began to race. We asked the family if they would like to be baptized and all 8 accepted. In the morning before this family, the gentleman we taught accepted the invitation to be baptizd as well as a sister of some girls that we are also teaching. By the end of the day we had 10 people who were willing accept the Gospel and be baptized.
Honestly, I am not really sure what will happen with these 10 people. I hope that every one of them can come to know the love of God and Christ. But what this day taught me more than anything was that God is so willing to communicate with us, He is willing to show us the way and to show us His love. He truly wants us to rely 100% on Him. All we asked for was a family of 5 but by the end of the day HE gaves us 10 people. I was so scared when i recieved the thought as my companion was praying. I was in complete amazement the whole day and night. I could hardly sleep. The next morning as I was studying, the first thing I read was the following in the Book of Mormon, the first verse of 1 Nephi 11:
Nephi talks about 3 things in this verse. He desired (diligence), he believed that the Lord could do all things (faith), and he pondered (prayer). I know understand that through these three things we were able to find these people. We had utter desire to find them, the faith that if we trusted even a little bit in the word of God he would give us what we needed, and prayed every moment we had to recieve it. We asked for 5, but because we replied solely on the guidance of His Spirit, and believed that HE and nobody else could make is happen, He gave us 10. He literally doubled what we asked for this day. I learned that we can't do this alone. We could have said: "Sweet! We are going to find a family of 5 because we are awesome missionaries!" But we humbled ourselves in that night after our prayer because we knew we couldn't do it without relying fully of the power of God. I am not and never will claim to know God face to face. I don't know the Bible or the Book of Mormon like others. Sometimes I have no idea what either are saying. But the thing that I do know is that God has all power. I know that Christ is mighty to save. I know that we MUST, MUST live by faith and reliance on the two. We can be baptized 16 times, we can do all the ordinances and memorize and know the significance of ever line in the Bible and/or the Book of Mormon, but none of this means nothing if we do not realize that we can not complete all of the commandments we are given and can not live a worthy life without the help of and faith in our perfect, kind and loving Heavenly Father, and His Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ.
I am in utter awe at the love that God is willing to show us if we are willing to depend completely on Him. I am grateful that He has found me a worthy representative to send me to Mexico. And I know that God has a perfect plan. It's HIS plan. His ways are perfect. And really, we don't understand. But if we will submit willingly and with all of our hearts, might, mind and strength to Him, we will be more happy and peaceful and loving in this life. And maybe we will never have great visions, or see God before we die, but that's ok because we can feel Him in every person that we meet, we can see Him in their eyes. And so when we get to the judgement seat, if we have loved, and been obedient and faithful, we will look Him in the eyes and say: "I never saw you with my eyes, or heard you with my ears, but I knew you all along."
I love this Gospel. I love the mission. I love all of you. But most of all, I love my merciful and loving Father in Heaven.