Week number who knows what!
I decided this week that for my whole entire mission when someone asks me how long I've been out I'm going to say, "A few months." Because it will always be true! Right now I've been out a few months and even by the end, eighteen isn't THAT many. Because I don't want to be one of those missionaries that is constantly counting and thinking about going home. No thank you.
First of all, HAPPY BIRTHDAY LITTLE SISTER!!! Sorry it's a little late. I did remember on the actual day, though. See? I wrote it in my study journal :)
By the way... Grandma is the only member of our family that emailed me this week? Sisters! Mother! Where art though! :)
This week was really interesting.
One of our investigators, Aurelia, just moved from an apartment to a trailer, so on Wednesday we helped her caulk and paint the whole inside. I loved this opportunity to offer service, especially to this amazing woman. She is from Guatemala and had to work from a young age, so never learned how to read or write. Despite these challenges and how difficult her life has been in general, she is happy, faithful, and humble, and truly wants to follow Heavenly Father's plan for her. She is an inspiration to me.
On Thursday we had to go to a trainers/trainees meeting in Virginia Beach, which was good. On the way home, though, there was a big accident or spill or something on the freeway and there was tons of traffic. Long story short, we were in the car ALL DAY LONG. Ugh. Nothing more frustrating than being a missionary and being stuck in traffic all day. Such a waste of time! And I'm the designated driver, so I had the joy (headache) of avoiding a million and a half accidents along the way. I never thought that there could be drivers worse than those in Utah, but I was wrong! Virginians are wild.
Other than those two events it was basically just a normal week. We did some tracting on Saturday and it started pouring down rain, which was fun. And I mean that completely free of sarcasm. The rain here is the best! Also people are more likely to let us in when the weather is bad.
Here is a quote that I found this week that really struck me:
"La facilidad nunca fue la base del progreso, y las personas a quienes la vida les haya resultado facil tendran que progresar con otros sacrificios o privarse de avanzar, puesto que dicho progreso es el proposito de la vida." -Elder Oaks, "La educacion de los Santos de los Ultimos Dias," Liahona abril 2009
For those of you that don't speak Spanish, here is a poor translation: "Ease was never the base of progress, and people that have had easy lives will have to make other sacrifices or deny themselves of advancement, since said progress is the purpose of life."
This quote put into words what I have been realizing out here on the mission. Heavenly Father's goal is for us to return to Him, humble and clean. His goal is NOT that this life be easy. If it were, He would have accepted Satan's offer to be our savior. Sometimes we create our own trials, but often God sends us difficulties in order to teach us something and help us remember our need to humble ourselves, repent, and turn more fully to Him. Almost every day I see the lives that our investigators live and think, "Why was I so blessed to be born in this country and in this church? Yes, I've gone through some really hard things, but nothing like this. Why do they have to bear this burden?" I don't know the answer to that question, but I know that life was never meant to be easy, and it's never going to be. Not for anyone. But I know that if we rely on the Lord, we can do it. He will support us and strengthen us. Even in the darkest times, we can have joy through staying on the path that Jesus Christ laid for us.
Well, I hope that you all have a great week!
The church is true and I love you!!!