Monday, January 12, 2015

7 months behind summer to go!

Hola Familia!  

Looking at the amount of months left in my mission doesn't phase me anymore, what makes me groan is waking up knowing I'm one day closer to summer.  Every time the sun shines now, I want to run away!  However, at interviews this week I put in a good word with Sister Sweeney and she's going to help me get to the mountains for the summer!  When I was on exchanges last week a sister was trying to defend the weather and said, "Well at least it's a dry heat here."  I looked at her and said, "I don't remember being dry on my bike in July!"  Everyone thought it was hilarious....I was serious!!

Interviews this week went really well, he asked me how I was doing and how I was handling the stress, asked me for my opinions on how some things in transfers should go, and then he had Sister Clark come in to give us a training on feeling the Holy Ghost.  I guess that's something he's been focusing on with the companionship's this transfer.  It sounded pretty set in stone that I will be here another transfer.  The other sisters in our branch are probably both leaving though, and 2 elders are coming in their place.  Sister Clark and I don't know how we feel about being the only sisters in the branch, but we're running low on Spanish sisters here in the mission so there's not much President can do.  We'll probably just continue to tell the Elders what to do.  Just kidding....kind of :)

One side note.  Next week is Wednesday P-Day so don't have a panic attack  :)  

This upcoming Saturday is my third baptism!  Octavio had his interview on Saturday night and to his delight he passed!  He came to church again yesterday and let the Branch Presidency announce his baptism over the pulpit, so he must be pretty serious about this.  We were a little worried he would back out, so we called himSaturday morning to see if he was still planning on the interview and he said "Yes, I'm ready!"  Even his wife, Nereyda was shocked when he actually went.  I want to see that family sealed so bad!  Funny story about them....while we were at their house one night, Nereyda was in the other room putting fake eyelashes on someone, so I started to fold their kids' laundry while we sat on the couch and taught Octavio.  Well in the mix of the laundry was men's underwear so I just left that and folded the baby clothes.  Nereyda, when she comes out and realizes I folded the clothes looks at me with wide eyes and says "His underwear too?!"  Octavio looked at me, and freaked out!  We were all laughing so hard I couldn't speak to tell him I hadn't touched them!  I felt bad he was so embarrassed, but it was so funny! 

We had a great lesson with Xochitl this week.  She has a cousin of another faith, that doesn't "trash" the Mormons, but she tells Xochitl things about us that make her worry.  One of them was about baptisms for the dead.  We explained the purpose of baptisms for the dead and Xochitl told us "Ohhh ok that makes sense."  Then she brings up the Book of Mormon and how her cousin told her we couldn't have anything, but the bible.  We talked to her about where the Book came from, why we need it, and that it teaches the same Christ centered principles as the Bible.  Again she felt so much better and said she was going to read it.  (I don't know why she doesn't ask these sooner.)  After this we were asking her to bring her oldest son, Carlos to church and she began telling us that she's pushed him his whole life, and she feels bad about it, so she's trying to let him make his own decisions.  She began to cry as she told us that she has felt so bad about things she has said to him, that she has apologized multiple times for making him feel bad.  But she still feels bad, and the guilt won't go away.  The first question out of our mouths was "Hermana, you've asked forgiveness of your son, have you asked forgiveness from God?"  Her face told us she had never thought of that before!  Oh how I love using the gospel to help my investigators find peace.  We talked about repentance, and now she is going to take the next steps of repentance to let go of that guilt.  You know what comes after repentance right?  Baptism!!!  One day it will day

In church on Sunday, Xochitl and Daniel only made it to the last hour again, but the program was 4 members and two of the missionaries talking about why they chose to serve missions.  Xochitl was quite inspired I guess, and she asked Daniel if he was going to serve.  He grinned and nodded, I'm so proud!

Concepcion is progressing splendidly :)  We taught her the Plan of Salvation this week, and then the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Oh oh!  Ready for this miracle?  Remember last week when I told you that I wished I could tell Concepcion's member mother everything that's been happening?  That night when we went to teach her, she announced "My mother's coming to visit from Mexico!"  My mouth just dropped open :)  We met her mom this week, and she yacked the whole lesson, but at least it was about the gospel :)  Concepcion has so much support in this decision she's making!  The two of them came to all 3 hours of church yesterday, and Concepcion even signed up in relief society to help us clean the church on Friday :)  She's so good!!  We have a lesson with her this evening and she's inviting her inactive son to listen in as well.  

So I have basically turned into the joke of Friday night sport's night!  Some of my shots are hilariously terrible and I will be laughing at myself so hard, that I miss the ball people pass to me!   But of course I also love to play hard sometimes! On Sunday when Hermano Tejada announced sports night in class, he told everyone that they can come, but I always like to win, and I'll do anything to win.  Everyone that was there on Friday cracked up.  So embarrassing!  He was probably referring to the time I jumped on Sister Tenney's back....she's so good at basketball, I couldn't steal from her, so I improvised :)  

We found two new families to teach this week! The familia Selenas, and the familia Garcia.  The Garcia family we are still trying to discern interest with.  Their first question was about how the church can help them financially. :p  (Sadly this happens often) After explaining that we as missionaries can only help with spiritual needs, they told us they were open to us coming over, but they couldn't come to church because they had other plans.  When we went Sunday morning to invite them one more time, they were getting ready to go to another church.  Hmm kind of fishy.  We see potential in the mother of that house, but not the dad quite yet.

The Selenas family is a younger couple with 4 kids under the age of 7.  They soaked up the Restoration, and accepted to be baptized if they find out through prayer that the message is true!  The Lord has been blessing us 10-fold with families to teach which shows us that sometimes we have to drop the families we love, who aren't quite prepared, in order to show our faith so the Lord can bless us with prepared families.  

We had two service projects this week.  The first was for our sweet blind member.  She said she has bed bugs and wanted us to go to home depot for her to find this certain solution to get rid of them.   Well, when we saw the bottle we saw that it was for outdoor use, on insects and such that live in the dirt and grass.  So when we got to home-depot, we found a bed bug spray and called and asked if we could get that one instead.  She was hesitant, but told us we could.  Then she had us lift up the mattress and spray the bed for her.  AGH.  We were a little nervous and I don't know how she knew because she can't see our faces, but she says "don't be scared!  There's not that many."  So I started spraying that thing like no tomorrow.  Well....maybe I sprayed a little too much because toxic fumes were floating around in the air and we all had to run out of the house coughing!  We took turns going inside to spray more parts of the bed, and finally we couldn't handle it.  Poor Hermana Toledo had to have a friend come pick her up for a few hours because she couldn't go inside her house.  Last time Sister Clark and I pick out bug spray!

The second service project was for a less-active family in our area, and they are hoarders.  There is 7 of them in a 2 bedroom apartment, and they had piles and piles of clothes and toys and papers, and stuffed animals.  Ay ay ay.  After 90 minutes we had 3 bags of clothes that were too small for the kids, 1 giant bag of toys, and one large bag of other junk.  Sister Clark and I had to run to a meeting after that, but the other missionaries stayed.  Apparently they were told to stop cleaning and just paint the filthy walls.  That's pretty normal here, why sand paper the walls or clean the gunk off?  Just paint over them!  The whole time I was thinking "If my mom were here....everything would be thrown away!" 

Jairo and Ernie are both progressing as of yesterday!  They've both been reading the Book of Mormon little by little, and praying.  Ernie had to work again on Sunday, but Jairo came to all 3 hours and said he learned a lot!  

My water gun has become quite the ordeal now :)  Sister Tenney somehow snuck it out of our room, and as we were getting ready for bed one night, she storms in with it, I start screaming, she pins me in a corner, and soaked me!!! I tackled her in the living room, but she's so strong she just lifted me up! I brought it in the car one day, and we pulled up next to the Elders, got them to roll down their window, then sprayed :)  Sister Clark and I still have the best wars though!  This paragraph does not go along with the whole "dignified missionary" thing, but usually it's just in the apartment so it's ok!!!

And that my beloved ones, is my adventures for this week...who knows what this week will bring!  Meet the Mormons is in the visitors center now so we want to take investigators this week, and Octavio's baptism, transfer calls, and hopefully lots of lessons!

I hope your week is just as exciting :) Thank you for my 7 month package!!!! :)  I'm going to be nice and take my companion to Cafe Rio today....or tomorrow.  We are getting our hair cut today :)  

I love you, I Love You, I LOVE YOU!!!

Hermana Short

ps I still have a baby face!  People still ask me "Are you 14 or 15?"  19!!  

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