I'm on a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For 18 months I'm living in the Retalhuleu, Guatemala area, teaching people about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I'm so excited to be in Guatemala!
Me with a random field worker. I love the knife!
Monday, January 30, 2012
A Mini Miracle Involving Men's Underwear!!!!
This week flew by and I'm back at Internet! It was an alright week, lots of work without lots of results. But that's how it goes sometimes. At least this week I don't have any gross stories. Here's what we did...
1. Multi-Zone Conference with Elder Amado! So this was pretty cool. Elder Amado is in the Area Presidency of Central America and came to speak to us...for about 5 hours straight...about basically every gospel topic! He talked a whole lot about marriage. Yikes. At one point while he was talking and pacing, he paced over to where us 10 hermanas were sitting together and said to us "Some of you are never going to get married. And others of you are going to wait a long time before you get married", Agh! and he said this in a really knowing, penetrating way. I mean, hes a General Authority, he knows extra stuff, right? So me and my comp are stressed that were never getting married. He was only talking to us 10 hermanas, the odds aren'tvery good. He-he I'm just joking (mostly) but it probably wasn't my favorite thing he said. The rest of the conference was really good and I got a lot out of it. Its awesome to get instruction from General Authorities from time to time.
So my next 2 stories are separate but they meet in the middle, So I hope y'all can make sense of it all.
2. "Noche Blanca" or "White Night"!! First the happier story. Because the Zone has done really awesome this month, President wanted to do something special for the baptisms of this last weekend, and we had a "Noche Blanca", where all the baptisms in the zone for this weekend happened together, and called White Night for everyone in their white baptism clothes. It turned out really nice. Hna. Hidalgo and I were pretty bummed because our baptism ended up falling through last minute (my next story), but we were still really happy for all the other missionaries with baptisms. And we got to help out in a little mini miracle. The other hermanas had 4 baptisms, one of them being a guy who forgot to bring extra underwear. He was apparently being super stubborn and refusing to get baptized. Well guess who happened to have an extra new pair of men's underwear? We did!! With a stroke of what must have been revelation, Hna. Hidalgo suggested that we buy men's underwear just in case our investigator forgot his. Well, our investigator didn't end up needing it because hes a flake, but someone else did! Its not every day that we've got a spare pair of underwear in our backpacks, but on Saturday we did and it ended up helping a whole lot! About 16 people were baptized on Saturday, bringing our totals for January in the Zone to 57 baptisms, with 8 families. Awesome work ZonadeMazate!
3. No.Show investigator... So our flake out baptism, Josè Luis, is this super old guy, 81 years old. We've been teaching him for FOREVER! Since when my trainer was here. Ugh. Hes so crazy! Here's the thing..he loves the Book of Mormon, he loves Joseph Smith. He likes going to church. But he will not get baptized! If that sounds illogical, welcome to Guatemala. We've about pulled out our hair with this guy. He's got lots of excuses, but mainly hes just being a wuss. He is scared. He has said multiple times that he knows he has to get baptized, but he "wants God to tough his heart" so that he knows it. What's he supposed to do. Hello? If you know you're supposed to get baptized, you don't need God to tell you so. Plus he already did 100 times in the scriptures. Geez. I could go on with this rant, but I wont. But this past week we finally set his date for Saturday, and everything was going to be great! We were so excited! And we were pumped to have a baptism at the Noche Blanca, and really happy for him that he finally decided to get baptized. But then it all fell apart and suddenly he had to go out of town and didn't know if he'd make it back in time, and then he wouldn't answer our (50) phone calls. We decided to be ready just in case he got back really late and we had all his stuff ready, including new underwear and a snack. Nope, didn't show. And our bishop later said that he saw him walking around town that evening. So we don't even know if he actually left town!! HnaHidalgo and I were so sad. We felt like we let down our team, our Zone. We did everything we could and it still didn't happen. We went on Sunday to JosèLuis' house mostly just to make him feel guilty and drop him. He kind of explained to us what happened, but none of it added up. Liar! We really wanted to yell at him but we decided that wasn't what Jesus would do. I'm really sad because he is a really really nice old guy, and I know that he really needs to be baptized, and he knows it too. But we can't do anything else for him. Ugh. Sad. Its the saddest to watch people progress but not be willing to take a step of faith, or not be willing to accept the answer that the Lord gives. But that's how it goes sometimes. He's got his agency.
So that was our week! HnaHidalgo and I are planning on working really hard this next week to find some awesome investigators and bring them to church Sunday! Were excited to work hard! Even though there are lots of discouraging moments, there are always little miracles and blessings. I'm really grateful for my comp, Hna. Hidalgo. Shes super awesome and willing to do whatever it takes to make something happen. The poor thing has parasites again, and her stomach aches all the time, but it doesn't stop her at all! She's awesome! I'm so grateful for the Gospel. The Gospel is what motivates us to work so hard. We know that it's true and we want to help people find the truth too. We aren't just out here because we like the Mormon Church or the rules or the prophet or our friends at church or anything like that. We're here because the true Gospel of Jesus Christ is here on the earth, available to everyone! We want to help people find the truth, to understand why we're here and how we can return to live with our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ after this life. I'm so grateful for my mission. I know that this is the Lords work.
Have a great week everyone! Talk to y'all next week!