Monday, November 10, 2014

Another Week in the life!

Buenas Tardes Familia!

This has been a good week, but kind of discouraging at the same time.  We got a lot of bad news from investigators, but at least now we have things to work on with them!  I'll start by going through all of our lovely families :)

Daniel and his mom are doing great.  When Daniel prayed in our lesson this week with his mom he said, "Please bless that the Hermanas can come over every day and teach us new things."  He loves learning, and he LOVES helping us teach his mom.  We taught her the ten commandments this week and we have hand signals for each one for memorizing purposes.  Daniel remembered them really well and taught them to his mom.  The other lesson we had with Xochitl this week was a little shocking.  We had been putting of the law of chastity just because we didn't feel like there was anything Xochitl would have to change.  So we focused on Word of Wisdom and gaining a testimony sort of lessons instead.  Well we decided to get Chastity "out of the way" this week and I kept getting the prompting to ask if she was married to her "husband" but I ignored it.  Well as we're teaching her the blessings of Chastity I said something like "I think you're seeing all of these blessings in your home right now!"  She looked a little guilty and said "Well maybe not all of them, but we try!"  Finally I spit it out, "You and Eduardo are married right?"  "No."  Oh man it crushed me!!  They've been living together for 9 years and have 2 kids together, but never got married.  She was pretty nervous/uncomfortable throughout the rest of the lesson as we talked about why living the law of chastity was important.  She agreed, and she told us she knows what she's doing is wrong, so she will talk to Eduardo about getting married soon.  Other than that though, she's progressing well.  She will often bring up a concern with the statement, "Since I'm thinking about getting baptized, I noticed...."  This week she noticed immodestly dressed members at church and it bothered her.  Luckily once we explained that was NOT the standard of the church, she felt better.  Also, Xochitl sells products for this company called Princess House.  It's kind of like Pampered Chef.  She was super excited last night to tell us how much she made this week.  Then the best sentence ever: "And today I thought about tithing!  I said now I need to give [10%] to the hermanas!"  Obviously, we have to teach her how to donate tithing now, but we are so glad she wants to keep the commandments!  

Daniels dogs had puppies!

So adorable!

Rafael and Leticia have had to be dropped again.  They weren't keeping commitments, we could never find them at home, and their true interest level was blatantly low.  Maybe later :/

Lorenzo is the opposite.  His interest level is so high, we can't keep up with him!  His baptism has had to be moved again though.....that man is going to be the end of me.  He keeps telling me, "Don't get discouraged!  I'll do it!"  Yesterday when he told me that I said, "Lorenzo, I have faith to move mountains, and you're a pretty large mountain!"  He laughed and said "I know I am!"  He did come to church again though and found a really good friend in a recent convert named Silvestre.  They both wear cowboy boots to church :)  He asked Silvestre last night "How long did it take you to finally get baptized?"  Silvestre responds "3 years!" Sister Baros heard and said "No!"  and I said "Lorenzo if it takes you 3 years I will.....agh!"  He laughed and said it wouldn't be that long, maybe next month.  We still need to help him understand forgiveness, so we are going to take care of that this week.  Hopefully, with enough prayers and following the Spirit, we can finally get that "Cabeza dura" into the waters of baptism.  

Selene and her boys are still doing well, once again though, they didn't come to church.  We had a lesson about baptism and confirmation this week to try and figure out their needs and how we can help them progress to a specific date.  Selene's main concern is that she wants her husband to take that step with them, so they can do it as a family.  But her husband is never home!  She asked her boys individually if they want to be baptized.  Cristian said "Uh-huh" in a "why not?" sort of tone.  She asked Yahir and he nodded his head and then he too gave an "Uh-huh" but his was more of a "Please mom!!!" sort of tone.  We've got the kids on board, now we just need to strengthen our efforts to find their dad, and get the family to church!!  Sometimes I want to strap them to my handlebars and just take them myself!

Sister Ferre and I had a Street contacting extravaganza this week.  We talked to so many people!  We had conversations with maybe 30 of them.  3 of those 30 are possible investigators!  One of them is named Ruben, he just got out of 10 years worth of prison, but you wouldn't be able to tell!  He has 2 boys Ruben Jr (11) and Joseph (9).  Ruben told us the boys' grandma died a few months ago and the boys were really sad because she had raised them.  So yesterday we went and taught the Plan of Salvation.  They boys stayed really engaged and said they didn't know there was another world after we die.  Ruben just thanked us over and over.  We are excited to keep teaching them!  The hard thing is they speak perfect Spanish and English, so if they'd rather go to church in English, then we have to hand them over to other missionaries.  We'll find out this week.

Arizona sunset!
Our other Ruben that we teach is progressing!  He read what we asked him to, and this week we taught the Restoration.  I don't know if he's really a member.  That or he forgot almost everything.  He asks good questions though and is intrigued so hopefully he continues to want to learn!

Another TTI (street contact) was Victor.  We had talked to him a long while back (Remember the guy who wanted to trade his bike for mine?).  We found out he lives right across the street from Julio.  He sounded really excited to meet with us!  Then he dropped the bomb.  His family is Jehovah's Witnesses.  He's not, but his family is quite active!  We decided to try teaching him anyway.  So we go over to his house one night and his 11, that's right 11 year old daughter Bible bashes us for the next hour!  Except it wasn't even bible bashing because she was the only one talking.  It was almost humorous the stuff she would tell us, and finally we had to leave by telling her we respect her beliefs, we love her, but we don't like to argue about religion, we just teach it!  She said when we come back she'll have her mom teach us more.  HA!  We will go over there, ask for Victor, and teach him or leave.  We don't want to go through that again!  The sad thing was when she straight up told us she wanted her information to confuse us.  My companion and I talked afterwards and both agreed that her "information" only strengthened our testimonies and our resolve to teach people a much happier truth!

Oh the funniest TTI was this African American preacher lady.  She just kept telling us how awesome we were for what we were doing.  So if any of you are at the Abundance of Rain christian church this week, she said she will be using us as an example in her next sermon.  Ohhhhh yeah... :)  Planting seeds!!

Yesterday at church Julio received the Aaronic Priesthood!  He also got a temporary recommend to go to the Phoenix temple dedication with us next Sunday!  He's such a good egg :)  My favorite part of Julio's story is that ever since he made a firm resolve to get baptized, he hasn't had to work 1 Sunday.  Heavenly Father blesses us when we have real intent :)

We had quite the hilarious moment at Yazury's this week.  We show up Monday night to teach a Family Home Evening and she  makes us eat 2 quesadillas each.  Then she brings out the toast with Nutella.  I am a sucker for Nutella, but I was done after the first 2 pieces!  So was my companion :)  But you see, my companion can't understand Spanish all that well yet, and I'm I told Yazury that my companion was just embarrassed, she definitely wanted more Nutella toast!  Yazury jumps up and throws 2 more pieces in the toaster.  Sister Ferre in the meantime realizes what I've done and begins punching me from across the table.  My plan backfired though and Yazury made me 2 more too!!!  We were soooo stuffed so we tried to get the 3 little girls to eat it.  They of course agreed (because they love us) and took a piece of our toast.  Yazury sees them eating our toast and wigs out!  She thought they were stealing it!  SO she made us each 2 more pieces!  We attempted once more to get the girls to scarf down our toast, but again....we got caught!  We are crying Nutella as Yazury places another 4 pieces of toast in front of us.  We quit trying to feed the ninas, sucked it up, and choked down the last pieces of toast.  Lesson learned....don't prank your companion!!  We then taught an FHE about Lehi's dream using a matching game we made up.  It surprisingly worked pretty well!  Those little girls are adorable, and they are be more reverent when we teach. 

Our Nutella eating friends :)

On Tuesday, we went to go clean Patriarch Mortensen's house again.  It was worse then usual, but this time Hermana Curay was there, and she cleans houses for a living so she really whipped us into shape and gave us all specific chores.  I was put in charge of cleaning the fridge.  That thing had 2 bottles of Mayo from 2009 in there!  After we finished cleaning me and Sister Ferre were listening to some stories from Patriarch.  He is telling us about the prophets he's met and as he's talking all of a sudden he starts to slump forward and his speech begins to slur.  Then he stops moving/speaking all together!  Me and Sis Ferre look at each other wide eyed and I mouth, "Did he just die?!"  I'm about to yell for Hermana Curay when Patriarch pops back up and says "Pardon??"  It was so funny!  He did it once more while he was talking to us.  Sadly, that might be the last time I hear from dear sweet Patriarch Mortensen.  He was put in the hospital Saturday and now he's not talking.  They think it's only a matter of days :(  I will have the best memories of that man though!

One funny story for the week was during Sports night on Friday. We were playing volleyball and I didn't know which position I was so I said, "Hey!  Where do you want me?"  Sister Martinez yells back "On the bench!!"  Ahaha she thinks she's so funny!  We all got a good laugh out of it :)

Food update!  I tried pumpkin pie this week!! I've been missing out my entire life!!!!!!!  It was so good!  Also, I was craving Philly Cheese steaks last Monday, and on Friday a member made the best ones I've ever had!  Of course they just call it a meat sandwich, but it was totally a Cheese steak.  Mmmmm  

Holy cow that was a long letter this week.  I hope you didn't fall asleep while reading it :)  Luckily I keep a daily journal so I will never forget any of this stuff.  I read a couple of my entries from earlier in my missions are a learning adventure!!  I have a head cold right now which stinks :/  It just started yesterday so hopefully if I keep taking cold pills and Vitamin C I can slow it down before it gets worse!  They are miserable :p  Today after emails and shopping, we have to clean and write letters, then hopefully I can take a nap!  Nothing too exciting, but relaxing! :)

I love you family!!  Have a fantasmical week at school and work :)  Are you doing anything fun for veterans day?  Is that a school holiday in Utah?  I don't remember it, but its a day off here!

I love you, I Love You, I LOVE YOU 

Hermana Short 

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