Hola familia! Como estan todos? Estoy olvidando ingles gradualmente, en serio! Que triste...a veces yo no puedo recordar palabras! So I often speak in Spanglish when I attempt to speak English ha-ha. It's the best thing ever!! Since my new comp is from Mexico, I am learning a lot about the culture. She really likes to give me history explanations and deep responses to every question I ask. The past few weeks have been a huge adjustment for me...the first week was really rough. Getting to know a new area, figuring out new companion dynamics, learning members' names, and everything else that comes with change out here takes a lot of brain power. I will be a pro at change by the end of my mission since that is inevitable out here. Really, I have come to realize that God has adapted every part of my mission to my needs to grow. He makes me stretch!!!! It hurts a lot, but I know with Him...nothing is impossible and everything has a purpose. My area is Rio Nilo...not Rio Nila. I am on the border right by El Paso. I can see it from where I am on the computer. I am still in Juarez. I will get the church address or something for you guys next week so you can look on Google maps :) I am in the North Stake. My comps name is Hermana Ramirez. She is from Mexico City and will be 21 in a month. We are very different, but we can learn a lot from each other :)
This week I picked out my mission phrase: LIVING THE DREAM!! Here is the story how I found that: We walked for about forever to go to a reference we received from a member and the woman said she was too tired and busy to listen to us that day, but maybe another day. I am sad to report my first reaction in my mind was, "I am tired, I work hard every day...and I've still walked all this way to give you the most important message ever....don't even!!" I really get upset sometimes when people say they are too busy or too tired to listen to us. If you're too busy for God, then you are WAY too busy!!!!! Anyways, I repented. And so we said that was okay and that we would be back a different day. While we were walking back, I saw a sign on a house that said, "Living the Dream" and it was in English...woot! After seeing that I thought, "Wow! I am living the dream!! My mission is my dream. And I am here. I am living it right now!! I have dreamed of this for forever. And here I am. Oh...voy a disfrutarlo!!" So, whenever I feel disappointed, I will count my blessings that I can be here and live my dream. :) I know that the most important thing I can be doing right now is to be here preaching the Gospel. (DC 15:6).
Okay, cool part of the week. I got to go back to Ninos Heroes for one day! I got to teach Hermana Patlan. (PS...I asked permission from the President to go to her baptism this Saturday. And he said YES!!!!!!!!! AHHHHH!) Since Hermana Ramirez and Hermana Sutton are both training leaders, I was with Hermana Bunderson (who is only 4 weeks old...in the mission) while they went to a training meeting. It was an adventure because I was the one who knew more Spanish, so whenever we talked to people...it depended heavily on my ability to be in tune and understand. Anyways, this was the best part of my week: Hermana Patlan and Hermano Patlan are planning on going to the temple in a year!!! They were talking about it with me. Hermana Patlan's countenance has changed sooooo much. It's amazing what the knowledge that you're a daughter of God does for you and your self-esteem. I love the Patlan family!!! It was fun to go back and see people I knew and it built my confidence that I can speak Spanish because I was the one carrying conversations and talking to everyone in the street...I didn't have a fluent Spanish speaker at my side....but I sure had the best interpreter there with me. It's amazing how much Heavenly Father watches out for his missionaries and gives them everything they need to accomplish His work.
This week I have learned that our testimonies need to be based in the Holy Ghost, not logic. We need to ask in sincere prayer if everything we "know" to be true is in fact true. That is where a deep and abiding testimony that cannot be swayed comes from. We can say, "Oh it makes sense. I believe." and be satisfied with that...but it's NOT ENOUGH! We need to think, ponder, and ask. (Alma 5:45-46) Keep reading the Book of Mormon as a family...and then ask if it's true. I know your testimonies will be strengthened.
Trust in the Lord, He always knows what He is doing and has a plan for each of us, whether or not we may like it at first. I am doing just fine! I love you all and miss you lots! I hope that blessings from my service are coming your way. XOXOXOXOXO