I am finally starting to figure out a system with this whole email thing. This keyboard thing that Mr. Smith gave me is seriously a life saver. Everyone is jealous of me haha. Mom, tell him thank you times a million!! But I log on, write the President, start uploading my photos, then I upload my journal from this keyboard, then I upload any emails or the family email to the computer and then I start reading-writing people. I print the emails I receive and will write or respond the following week. Feel free to write me regular letters as well.
Going to the Temple
We went to the temple on Thursday. It was absolutely an incredible experience. First, this temple is absolutely incredible. And Mom and Kim and Vicky...those walls and oxen are absolutely indescribable…Seriously! We picked up clothes at the baptism font, so that was the first place I went. I walked in and saw the oxen and reeds and wanted to cry I was so excited and so happy to be there and see what you painted and everything. I was stoked beyond stoked. Then we did an endowment session, which was beautiful in a different language. And the celestial room was unreal. I looked at all your walls and was amazed. First, all those curves and the ridges around each inset...wow, a lot of detailed work. No one understands what a pain that probably was ha. Not to mention the modellos. But it makes the rooms unreal and really makes an incredible difference, it´s amazing. I sat there in the celestial room as tears welled up in my eyes and rolled down my face because I was so happy I can´t even describe it. I was so happy that I could be in the temple, feel of the Spirit ever so strong, and just feel the pure joy and peace and happiness that this Gospel brings. It brings more peace and happiness than anyone can describe. And I felt that tan fuerte (so strongly) sitting there. Then to sit there and stare at these beautiful walls that you painted mom and to appreciate the work and dedication that went into it. It´s seriously so cool mom!! So legit. I never wanted to leave as I just sat there with pure happiness. I went to the sealing room after to see them and sat there again with tears welling up in my eyes. And I just imagined you, Kim, and Vicky panicking as the walls fell down and praying with all your might, and it just brought tears to my eyes as I thought about what yáll did for those walls. And it was so worth it because they are unreal. Good work ladies. Unreal! Man, it was just absolutely the best day ever.
As I sat there in the temple, with so much peace and happiness I can´t describe, I thought, ¨Why am I not talking to more people? Why am I not talking to everyone?¨This Gospel is true. It´s real. It´s of God. And it will bring more peace and happiness to your life than you can imagine. And I know it with all my heart because I´ve felt it. I was filled with more fire and desire to talk to more people. I´m over the whole ¨fear¨thing. I´m stoked to talk to people and whoever wants to listen, I´ll be there to help. It was an incredible experience.
Okay, so Dengue Fever is what you can get through mosquito bites. My area is a little cooler temperature and so I haven´t gotten that many mosquito bites so far, plus I use bug spray, but the mission has a rule that if you get Dengue twice, you will be sent home. The first time is okay, but once you get it a second time you go home. So pray I don´t get that.
Funny stories or adventures
Today I was talking to a less active member and we were inviting her to the Christmas party we´re going to have...I was excited and talking and tried to say, “And we´re going to have refreshments at the end also¨. Well the word for refreshment is resfrigerio. But instead I said, ¨resfriado¨which is the word for a cold ha. The joys of learning another language. We laughed about it.
Tonight we came home and there were hormigas (ants) ALL over the wall of the kitchen. And when I say ALL over, I mean, literally so thick. It was an ant party fo sho. Adventures!
I played the piano for the primary program yesterday. It was seriously the best. Kids are the cutest, everywhere. I loved every second.
Also, wow, we saw so many little miracles yesterday. It was incredible. This is kind of long, but I just copied and pasted this from my journal cause I was just amazed as I watched the miracles unfold. Sheryl told me that miracles will happen every day on my mission and to expect them. She´s so right and I´m seeing them every day.
JOURNAL, aka long story: Sunday, December 8th
I´m going to try to explain our morning and all the little miracles we saw this morning.
This week we found 3 young guys, all around 20 years old, who are all nonmembers, but actually friends with a member. It was pretty crazy how we found them. I´ll explain that first. Nelson is a member who is kind of less active. I met a guy on our bus ride to Santa Ana se llama (to call) Arnoldo about a week and a half ago. I gave him a LDM and told him it could change his life. He seemed receptive and gave me his phone number.
Well a few days ago we went to teach Nelson and we were almost done teaching him when his friend Juan Carlos showed up. So then we taught Juan Carlos as well. We invited them to the noche espiritual that night and they both agreed to come. We returned to our house right after teaching Nelson and Juan Carlos and decided to call Arnoldo. He answered and then told us he knows Nelson and Juan Carlos and he´s going to come with them to the activity. Then to our surprise they brought one of their other friends, Melbin. So 4 young guys all came to the activity. It was pretty neat. We taught them Saturday night (minus Melbin) and they all agreed to come to church today.
Okay, so the miracles today.
We left our house early to go help Hermana Guadalupe Silva try to clean her house and everything so she could come to church. Her mom is a bruja (I’ll let you look that one up) and wouldn´t let her come last week because she wasn´t done with what she needed to. We helped her clean and then had a little bit of time, so we decided to return to the house to call some people about church. On the way home we found Francisco and Rosario (two super old and super sweet persons, that don´t quite understand everything). They were walking to church, and usually we find someone to llevar (to take) them to the church, so we realized we didn´t need to find anyone this week because they were walking there, 1 hour early haha.
We went in our house and called a few people. We called Nelson and he didn´t answer. (We´re pretty sure he is addicted to getting high off of glue and so he´s usually sleeping during the day). So we decided to call Arnoldo and he didn´t pick up. Bummer. We decided to call Reina, who is the sister of Mirna and usually brings Mirna to church with her. We´ve never called Reina before. But she answered and told us that she wasn´t going to come to church and so Mirna wasn´t going to come either. So we told her we´d bring Mirna and decided to go get her. We got ready to leave and I decided to call Arnoldo one more time and he answered. He said that Nelson was asleep and so the others were planning on coming but didn´t know where the Iglesia (church) was. They said they were close to our area and so we thought, ¨Great!¨We hung up the phone and left the house, and we walked outside to sure enough see all 3 guys just one block away from our house walking towards us. Miracle. They told us that they didn´t know where the church was (Juan Carlos only knew where the other ward was, so they were going to go there since Nelson was asleep). We then had to pass by Mirna and another muchacha (girl) and they would come with us. Miracle.
We got to Mirna´s house and she was changing and so we went up to her house to wait. We told her sister Reina that it was the primary program and motivated her to come with us. So she hurried and showered and changed and got Rosita (her little girl) ready as well. Miracle.
We had to pass by Lourdes as well, so we sent the guys with Mirna and Reina to the church while we went and found Lourdes. At this point we were running late, and I am officially the piano player now for the ward. And last week we got there early so that I could find out what hymns and practice during prelude so that I could play the hymns well. We picked up Lourdes and headed to the church. I knew we wouldn´t have time for me to practice and so I prayed that there would be hymns I could play.
We arrived just as the bishop sat down and the chorister got up to conduct the hymn. I ran to the piano, and sure enough it was a Christmas hymn and I was able to play it fine. I sat there after that hymn finished, and was worried which sacrament hymn they would choose. I opened the hymn book, and picked one of the sacrament hymns and practiced (without actually pushing the keys), while the Bishop made announcements and stuff. I had no idea which hymn was the sacrament hymn. Sure enough the Bishop announced the sacrament hymn and it was the one that I was looking at and practiced a little sitting there. Miracle. Now this probably sounds really dumb and silly. But it meant so much to me. And it was just another little tender mercy in my life that God knows me individually. Personally. And He is there to help me throughout my life and to support me. And He is making miracles happen every day here on the mission and every day in my life before the mission. We just have to look around us and open our eyes and see them. Little tender mercies like that are truly amazing and absolutely beautiful. I love looking for them in my life.
Basically we wouldn´t have had any investigators at church today...but because of multiple small miracles, we had 4 investigators show up and I was able to play beautifully. It was just eye opening and confirmed my testimony more.
Not to mention that I played the piano for the primary program today and it was truly the best! Loved every second. Kids are the freaking best!
Love you all like crazy!