Wow, what a week. This may or may not have felt like the longest week of my mission thus far. It has been a little rough for various reasons (but at least I’m not feeling sick). I’m learning a lot, I guess that’s the idea. "Come what may, and love it," I guess. I’m just focusing on one day at a time and I know it could definitely be worse, so I’m reminding myself to count my blessings. And I’ve seen little tender mercies each day which have been little gifts from heaven and I’ve enjoyed with a smile. One of those being a sign recently painted on a wall, "Da siempre lo mejor de ti y lo mejor vendra". Translation: Always give the best of yourself and the best will come. I’m working on that and I know the best will come.
|Me and my new companion.|
Story of the week:
We had a pretty funny experience Friday. We had an activity called "Noche Espiritual", it’s basically members get together in the home of a member and we sing a hymn, opening and closing prayer, and a spiritual thought and refreshment. Well we were just enjoying life and finishing our Noche Espiritual with a lovely hymn. We’re all singing and feeling the spirit and peace and all that, when all of sudden one of the hermanos (brothers) jumps up and starts stomping on something on the ground. We all were startled, some of us continued singing, trying to keep the spirit, others were laughing, others staring. We ended up finishing the hymn, mas or menos, (more or less) and at the end of the prayer we all jumped up and it turns out it was a snake that was slithering between our legs. And this wasn’t just a little baby guy, it was a pretty decent sized snake and it was black with yellow stripes, which I think is poisonous (but I could just be saying that to make the story better, who knows). The members pulled out the machetes and chased after him as he tried to hide in between a rock and the wall of the house...they ended up cutting him in a couple pieces, to then find out that all three pieces were still alive and moving and slithering. So then they got a giant piece of wood and just started bashing it until it was for sure dead. I was dying laughing at this point. Good times. Adventures!
We put a date (set a baptismal date) with Sonia, the mom of Arnoldo. She’s going to be baptized March 2nd, and we’re stoked! We taught her last night and it was absolutely beautiful. She’s always been super shy and it’s been like pulling teeth to get her to talk to us, but we planned super well and taught her in the church because the spirit is super strong. She was so open, told us everything and the sacrifices she’s made and how she’s ready and excited to be baptized and it was amazing. The problem with her is that she’s married, but separated from this guy, and so she’s had another boyfriend. Well that’s not good since she’s married and she told us now that she’s left her boyfriend and told him basically that she wants to be baptized and change her life and that means she can’t be with him anymore. She told us how he has said things to her like, "You’ve forgotten about me", and she said, "and the truth is, when I’m in the church, or talking with the Hermanas, it’s totally true, I forget all about him". And she was smiling and super happy as she said it. She wanted to talk about everything and it was amazing. She also told us that she knows she’s a sinner (as we all are) and always said that she would change and with all the changes she’s seen in Arnoldo and everything, she knows that is from God and that she is going to commit to Him. And she offered a beautiful prayer in the end of the lesson that asked that her family and the rest of her hijos (children) will be able to come to this Gospel one day and everything. It was amazing. I had tears come to my eyes and a huge smile on my face and I was and am so happy. I love her with all of my heart. I really do. She’s an amazing example to me and she’s another mom friend in my life and it’s amazing. I’m so grateful for this experience and the opportunity to be a part of her experience and conversion. It’s such an honor. And last night as we said bye to her and finished our night I was still beaming with joy. I thought about my past week which was rough, there were many moments this week when I didn’t want to be a missionary or I wanted to be with my family...but last night none of that mattered. And last night as we put this date (set a baptismal date) with Sonia, someone we’ve been praying with and teaching and spending so much time thinking and planning how we can help her, as we talked with her to prepare her for her baptism, none of the other bad experiences this week mattered. And it was all worth it. And it is all worth it. "Come what may, and love it."
Me helping a member carry stuff to her house...my comp took the pic and this was the only one we got. Everyone carries stuff on their heads, it's pretty awesome.
Love y’all like crazy. Miss you lots. Thanks for the prayers and support. I feel them.
Editors note: Since I couldn't readily identify a black snake with yellow stripes on-line that was poisonous to El Salvador, we'll hope for the best. Some things may be better left unknown. :)