So besides a lot of food this week, arissandra had her interview to get baptized. she decided in the interview that she wanted to wait until she got back from mexico at the end of august to get baptized. she is going to mexico to visit her abuela who is super catolico and she wants to enjoy her time there. she is worried if she goes there a member of the church that they wont accept her and they will just argue and what not. but she is so ready to be baptized and we didnt want her to wait because the spirit is working super strong on her right now and we are worried if she waits it will dim and then she might come back not wanting to be baptized. and we want her to be able to get the Holy Ghost sooner. We promised her that her family will accept her, and that was a promise that didnt come from us. We went over with a recent convert that was in a similar situation and we had a really good lesson with her. We then had her pray right there with us to know if she should get baptized before or after mexico. we couldnt tell her what to do, she needed to get her answer from Heavenly Father because he has a plan for her. After the prayer we all just sat in silence for probably a good 2 minutes. arissandra just had her eyes closed the whole time and she looked so peaceful and focused. The spirit was super strong. she then opened her eyes and told us that she didnt want to get baptized thisbut the following. This is a very difficult situation because she is so young and I can see her fear of having her family not support her in this decision. But I know that it is the right thing for her and that God wants this for her even though it is hard. I love the quote, "I never said it would be easy, I only said it would be worth it." I know that God has a specific plan for each and every one of us. If we pray to him we will be able to get answers to what we should do if we listen to the promptings of the Holy Ghost. I know God hears our prayers. Hard times come, but it is to make us stronger and help us grow. Es vale la pena.
We had a really cool lesson with a kid named Brandon this week. He told us that he wants to find a job and get school stuff settled and we promised him that if he came to church and put God first in His life that everything else would work out. I realized in my life there were times when I didnt put God first, and thats when I struggled with other things in my life. As I was teaching brandon I realized something. Before my mission, I was terrified to play the piano in front of people. I would never play in seminary or hardly ever in church. I was super scared. It was during those times that I was putting wordly things first. I really did want to be able to get over my fear of playing in front of people but it was something I struggled with. Being out here on the mission, I am putting God first in my life. I am setting aside all wordly things and serving Him. One out of the many blessings that I have seen from being on the mission, is that I am not scared to play piano in front of people anymore. I am not any better than I was before, if anything I might be worse..., but God is blessing me with the talent he gave me to not be scared to play. Its so weird how at meetings I just walk up to whoever is in charge and ask they have someone to play, something I have never done before in my life. And I really am not even that good at all, but God is blessing me with that confidence to play and know if I mess up, its alright! As I was sharing this experience with Brandon I started crying... not sure why. I just really felt the Spirit and it was neat to see the blessings that have come into my life. He said he was really touched. Sometimes I think even if the investigators that we teach dont accept the gospel, us missionaries learn and grow and receive answers to prayers or recognize blessings in our lives. I am so grateful for all of the experiences I am having on my mission and that my testimony is growing.
We went over to the Eastmans one night with the Smiths to celebrate Tims birthday, sis. warners 1 year mark, and my 9 month mark. we had some cake and played some uno. and I think samantha smith and I are going to sing in church!
And we had a lesson with Cory this week. It went well. we brought sis. watts with us who really helped control the situation so it didnt turn into bible bashing... but I dont think we will be meeting with him anytime soon. He wants to keep meeting us and ask his questions about what we believe and then proving us wrong in the bible. but we told him that its pointless to keep meeting with us because its not going to go anywhere if he isnt willing to pray about the book of mormon and joseph smith because that is the only way he is going to know that our message is true. When I think of times like these it reminds me of the talk "the cost and blessings of discipleship" by Jeffrey R. Holland. We will all be tried and tested just like the Savior, and none of us will suffer even close to what the Savior suffered but as His disciples hard times will come. But good times always come as well :)
And this week I also tried Chocolate gravy finally! A southern classic. Yall have to try it!
|District picture with the ZL's and senior couple after district meeting.|
|Just took a quick stop to Lake Dardenelle|
|Got my first haircut on the mission! Hna. Sorta is so nice and cuts missionaries hair for free. I love her!|
|At the GVA's learning to balance my scriptures on my head.|
|Hna. Hernandez!!!! I love when she works here in Russellville and|
takes us out to eat.
|Every Saturday night we play soccer with the branch and investigators. It is super fun.|
This is me and Denys waiting for our turn to play.