X Adventures, Toilets That Don't Work, and LOTS of Chili!!!!
Hello family!! You all sound like you're doing great!!! And busy...holy, I can't believe February is almost over!! Time flies, but it's also slow. I really miss you guys, but hey, I love it here too! :)
Well, this is week six of the cycle. Hermana Zepeda's training is coming to a close! I can't believe it! I always tell her she was my child born in the wilderness of my afflictions ha-ha (See 2 Nephi 3:1). December was a very rough time, I'm so glad it's over. We stuck it out like champions. We are nervous to see what will happen with the next cycle because we want to stay here together. Just a fun thought about my companion: she's a Justin Bieber fan. I'm not sure why it makes me laugh so much. I would have never guessed she would be one!
Okay, the two parts of my week: spiritualness and adventures. First, spiritual things!!!!!! :) Maria de Jesus and Jaquelyn are progressing nicely! We went to their house on Saturday to confirm they were coming to church. When we walked up the stairs, we saw Maria washing her tennis shoes to come to church with a toothbrush and a barrel of water and soap. They don't have much, and she said, "Well, we can at least come with clean shoes!!" She makes me smile :) After church on Sunday, she said that she feels very different at the chapel than she has felt at other churches. (cough cough...SPIRIT!!) We are having a sister in the branch teach her and a few other sisters how to read and write. She is super excited about it! She calls us her daughters and always tells us how much her life is changing since we came. We taught her the Word of Wisdom yesterday and she said, "Okay, I will give up the coffee, but do you think this Word of Wisdom will help me drop some weight?" LOVE HER ha-ha. So anyway, the point is that Maria needs to be in your prayers, along with Jaquelyn, Lluvia, and Abram :) I always look forward to teaching them. I'm happy with the work we are doing with her. Now we just need to find more like her!
Okay, adventures: always many, many, many - especially if your name is Hermana Anderton. We went last Monday as a district before our meeting to the "X" of Juarez. They have marathons there in October and sometimes in the spring too. I'm thinking maybe October 2016 we could make a pit stop here and run a marathon?? :) It was really fun; we took a lot of pics! But here is my Betty Boop Moment: it was super windy and my skirt caught the draft when we were taking a photo, I just about died. My luck is not all that fabulous ha-ha. But it was a good time! Hmm and this week our toilet had issues! The flusher didn't work, so we filled up our mop bucket with water so it would have pressure to drain it out until we fixed it. We were laughing the entire time at the ridiculousness of it all. We finally figured it out, something wasn't attached to the other thing, I don't know what every part is called hash. Long story short, we used a twisty-tie from a bread package to fix it. Handy-woman over here ;) Also, it's official, I'm a Mexican. I downed more chili than others in my district on Sunday. My eyes were watering so badly and my mouth was on FIRE!!! But I now have a sticker that says, "Hecho en Mexico" as my prize. I ate ice for more than 20 minutes after. You should be proud!
Well, my thought for you guys comes from a video we saw this week: The Atonement and Missionary Work. It made me tear-up. There was a talk from Elder Holland that is entitled "Missionary Work and the Atonement" from an MTC devotional in June 2000. That guy is powerful with his words. He said:
Anyone who does any kind of missionary work will have occasion to ask: Why is this so hard? Why can’t our success be more rapid? Why aren’t there more people joining the church? Why isn’t the only risk in missionary work that of pneumonia from being soaking wet all day and night in the baptismal font?
I have thought about this a great deal. I offer this as my personal feeling. I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him? It seems to me that missionaries and mission leaders have to spend at least a few moments in Gethsemane. Missionaries and mission leaders have to take at least a step or two toward the summit of Calvary. Now, please don’t misunderstand. I’m not talking about anything anywhere near what Christ experienced. That would be presumptuous and sacrilegious. But I believe that missionaries and investigators, to come to the truth, to come to salvation, to know something of this price that has been paid, will have to pay a token of that same price.For that reason I don’t believe missionary work has ever been easy, nor that conversion is, nor that retention is, nor that continued faithfulness is. I believe it is supposed to require some effort, something from the depths of our soul.
If He could come forward in the night, kneel down, fall on His face, bleed from every pore and cry, “Father, if this cup can pass, let it pass,” then little wonder that salvation is not an easy thing for us. If you wonder if there isn’t an easier way, you should remember you are not the first one to ask that. Someone a lot greater and a lot grander asked a long time ago if there wasn’t an easier way.
When you struggle, when you are rejected, when you are spit upon and cast out, you are standing with the best life this world has ever known, the only pure and perfect life ever lived. You have reason to stand tall and be grateful that the Living Son of the Living God knows all about your sorrows and afflictions. The only way to salvation is through Gethsemane and on to Calvary. The only way to eternity is through Him – the Way, the Truth and the Life.Well, I've thought about that a great deal. And I've also thought about the sacrifices we make to serve others, the sacrifices we make to follow our Savior. They are worth the price. It's not easy, but there is no other thing I would rather do! Now, this doesn't mean we are here to only suffer and sacrifice, etc. We are here to enjoy the ride of life that our Father in Heaven has given us. We can sacrifice, and we can do so happily, with confidence that the Lord is by our side, every step of the way. Let us never be weary of well-doing! (D&C 64:32-34)
I love you all so much! Miss you all! But I'm doing great and am happy here! Keep on keeping on!!! HAVE A FABULOUS WEEK!!!! XOXOXOXOXOXOXO
|Raegan's District in front of the X|