It's good to be back! Not emailing for a week is not fun at all! As you heard, we had a mission fun day last preparation day. It was about an hour to an hour and a half long drive there, and we had just enough time to run to the store real quick before we left. We got back right before 6, so we had just enough time to change and then get to work! So that's why emailing didn't happen last week.
But yeah, the mission fun day was awesome! We played a bunch of games (my team were the masters of charades), watched 17 miracles, and drank homemade root beer! It was very close to the maximum amount of partying approved by the white handbook...
So the title I would have used for last week's email is "party crashers". We crashed two parties two weeks ago. We were fed pasole at the birthday party of a 6 year old, and then the next day we were invited into a house, and we found out later that they were having a first communion party for one of their kids... So yeah, you can call us party crashers if you like...
Two weeks ago church got canceled because of some snow. We had just finished cooking and packing up a huge breakfast to take to our investigators to help them come to church when we got the call that church was called off. We were pretty disappointed.
Because we are the Spanish missionaries, we have a significantly smaller number of members that are able to come out and teach with us. We have a list of every member that could potentially come out with us, and lets just say that it doesn't take long to call the whole list... Anyways, the point of this paragraph is to show how much the Lord blesses us and how involved He is in this work of salvation. A few of the members that come out with us regularly are planning on moving very soon. But just in the past two weeks we have had two members move into the area who speak Spanish and are willing to come out with us! One of them even came up to us and asked when he could come out with us! These two new members are an example to me of the tender mercies of the Lord. Things might not always be as easy as we would like them to be, but the Lord will always provide us with the assistance we need to accomplish the tasks that are placed before us.
I had a cool experience with following promptings this last week. We went to visit a less active member, and when we got to their apartment, they told us that they had been called in to work, and they wouldn't be able to meet with us that day. We were going to leave the area and continue on with our plans, but the idea came to me of trying a potential investigator that lived in the same apartment complex. We knocked on the door, and he told us that he was leaving to work right then, but that he would love to talk to us another time. We set up an appointment, and the next day we had an amazing lesson with him. In the lesson (in preparation for sharing the First Vision) we told him that the Spirit would be here, and he said "The Spirit is already here..." Amazing! The Lord has His hand in this work for sure!
I met some people this week from Turkey (I was able to use the two Turkish words I learned a few weeks ago from a less active...), and I met someone from Afghanistan who had only been in the U.S for 3 months! He spoke really good English!
We were trying some potentials the other day, and we knocked on the last door we were going to try in that area. A guy opened the door, and to my surprise, it was an inactive member that I had met one time a few months ago! We had no idea that he lived in that house! He invited us in, we were able to talk to him about his feelings towards the church, and we set up a time to see him in the future. Another less active found!
And while we're on the topic, let me tell you about another less active that we found this past week! This one was truly a miracle. It was 8:50, we were about 10 minutes from home, and we had finished all that we had planned. We were thinking about heading home, but we decided to try one more potential in that area. We knocked the door and a man answered who spoke Spanish. He told us to wait just a minute, and then he shut the door. We stood there for a few minutes while his dogs barked and barked and barked. Finally, we decided that he wasn't going to come back, so we started walking away down his pathway. All of the sudden, the door opened and a lady said "Hey, wait!" She came out to meet us, and told us that she was a member of the church! She had been baptized when she was 12 in Georgia, and she had been very active in the church there. However, when she moved to Ohio, she had a bad experience and stopped going to church. The man who had answered the door was her husband, and he was from Mexico. We told her that we were Spanish missionaries, and she was very excited. She had tried a lot of times to explain what a Mormon was to her husband, but she didn't really have and materials to help her. Well, we just happened to have a Book of Mormon in Spanish and a Spanish restoration pamphlet... She was interested in coming to the branch (she speaks Spanish), and she told us she thought her husband would probably be interested as well. As we were leaving, she told us that she had done baptisms in the Atlanta temple before, and that she "had always wanted to go into the big part of the temple, but she hadn't been old enough." That was definitely a miracle finding them that late at night. That was our "last door of the day" miracle. It's amazing to me to see how the Lord helps these people be found. In the last 2 transfers, we have found 6 less active members.
Sorry about not writing a lot on that letter you sent. I didn't have any time to do it that Monday, and I only had about 20 minutes Tuesday morning to write. I wanted to get it off Tuesday morning because I wanted to let you know that I definitely did want you to send my temple clothes and that I needed them as soon as possible. We found out last Wednesday that we will be going to the temple this coming Wednesday, in two days! We are super excited! So yeah, that's why the letter had so few details, because I was super rushed in trying to get it off. If you haven't sent my clothes yet, I want my temple bag with everything that is still inside it. Even though I won't get it before this Wednesday, I still want it. The Columbus temple has very few extra sets of clothes, so they want everyone to have their own clothes if possible. I'll probably be fine for this week, but I definitely need them for the next time we get to go to the temple. If you want to send another letter with questions, I'll give you more details, sorry again.
It's good to hear from you all. Keep on pushing on. I know that life can get tough sometimes, but what helps me through the difficult times is remembering who I am and why I'm here. We are all children of our Heavenly Father, and our purpose here is to strive to become as much like our Savior as possible and to help our brothers and sisters do the same. I know that as you remember what the greater purpose of this life is, you will have the strength to do the things you need to do, and that you will experience more happiness as you go about your daily activities. I love you all! Thanks for all that you do for me and for each other!