Another great week!!! I have decided that something really, really, really hard must be waiting for me because missions are not supposed to be this amazing. I think the Lord is just giving me a taste of how it can be so that when it gets rough I can remember this time and not give up.
As far as the raincoat goes, Mom, I have no idea what happened. I honestly don't think that it was stolen or anything because USPS is safe and the box was still closed and everything. I think I'm just blind and dumb. I had already thrown the box away by the time I read your email last week and we were going to go look in the dumpster, but then by the time we had time to do that the garbage man had come. But it's all right I'm just telling myself that someone really needed a raincoat, so Heavenly Father blinded me temporarily so that I wouldn't see it and they could get it. That way I don't feel like such a dummy :) It's honestly not a big deal though. In fact I think I'll be just fine with just my umbrella.
Also I love everyone's emails! Mom, I feel like I'm sitting on the couch talking to you as you do something when I read yours because it kind of jumps to different things as you think about what you did the past week and your plans for the next one. We've always been able to follow each other's train of thought well :) And Whitney I already told you this but your emails are the BEST! I adore them. Valerie, I am so excited to get your letter. THANK YOU!!! Shelley, I got Parker's letter finally! THANK YOU!!! Sister Day, you are the best. Thank you for your kind words! Jordanann, you rock and I know you will do great on your new team and everything!!! A lot of the other emails I get are from other missionaries so they won't be reading this, but for anyone who is, you are all wonderful! I appreciate your support and feel the help that Heavenly Father gives me in answer to your prayers. And most of all, Megan, thank you for being so loyal in updating the blog!!! You rock.
All right, want to hear about last week? Good!
The lesson that I learned this week is that as missionaries we are just instruments in God's hands and that nothing we "accomplish" is through our own abilities. It's all Him and the Spirit. I can't remember if I mentioned this last week or not, but last weekend one of our less-active members, Rosalio, invited us over to do family home evening with him and his kids. He has three daughters and a son here with him in the United States, but they're all grown up with their own families. We agreed to do it but had no hopes that it would go anywhere because we had spoken to some of them before and they did not seem interested in the least. Well, first of all, we got to church that Sunday and he was there along with his entire family. MIRACLE! Then that night we went over and they all actually came. MIRACLE! (As missionaries we get stood up more often than not so this one was huge) We talked a little bit about what they liked about church and the power of prayer in our lives. To our surprise, they all participated and were interested in learning more, so we set appointments with all of them. MIRACLE! Since then we have met with all of them and taught various parts of the restoration and plan of salvation. MIRACLE! Then they all came to church again yesterday. MIRACLE! The most exciting part of it all, though, is the son, who has a "wife" and three kids (they're not actually married; they just live together). Two nights ago we invited them to get baptized and they agreed (MIRACLE!) and then last night we talked about the law of chastity and how they will need to get married before they can be baptized. They were all for it. MIRACLE! They will be baptized on August 10 and the wedding will be a few days before.
It is truly amazing to see how the Lord is deeply interested and highly involved in the lives of each and every one of His children. As missionaries we work hard, try to keep the Spirit with us, and teach lessons, yes, but the real finding and teaching and converting is done by the Spirit. Often we plan things and think we know how it will work out, but it turns out that Heavenly Father had something entirely different and even better planned for us. We don't understand until it's all over that He was there all along leading and guiding and moving the work forward.
On an entirely different note, I am becoming more and more convinced that I want to work with the immigrant population for my career. They need advocates to fight for them.
Also, I gave a talk in church yesterday and it went surprisingly well. I kind of hate speaking Spanish for extended periods of time because I can hear my own accent and I know that it's not as good as I would like it to be, but at least people seem to understand me pretty well.
Until next week!
I LOVE YOU!!!
P.S. I just realized that I didn't take one single picture last week. Oops. I'll try to be more exciting this week.