Beautiful Guatemala

Beautiful Guatemala
Me with a random field worker. I love the knife!

Monday, October 15, 2012

I am Really Sad That This is Coming to an End!!!

Hey everyone!!

OK I’m freaking out because my flight plans came today in an email. I’m not baggy(trunky). I just want y’all to understand how I feel about everything and if I leave out big things, you won’t know how I’m feeling. Anyways, I cried a little bit (shocker right? I’m such a crybaby!) Just now,  I’m really sad that this is coming to an end. I still have a month and a half!! But yea... take a deep breath... OK. But yea, we had a great week!!! I’m excited to share what’s going on!

Familia Martinez Reyes!!!  I think everything I’m going to share has to do with this family. We are moving right along with them and had some great experiences. Where shall I begin? We pretty much have a secure baptismal date for this Saturday Oct 20. They have to get married right before, and baptized right after. It has truly been a blessing to meet these guys and teach them and everything, they’re really special and I love them so much! 

With this family I’m really learning about the importance and power of love. Very simple, right? I don’t know, I've opened my own heart up to this family so much, and the love I have for them motivates me (and my comp) to do everything we possibly can to help them. I just love them so much, and they have so many needs, economical, spiritual, etc., and I know that when they get married and baptized, obeying 2 really important commandments of the Lord, the Lord will be able to bless them so much. And I just want more than anything these blessings for this family. 

Something special that we did with them last week was that we made grilled-cheese sandwiches with them!! Ha-ha it was my idea, and it had a few flaws. People don’t eat grilled cheese sandwiches here, so I thought it would be a cool "cultural experience" for them and at the same time super easy for us. Making grilled cheese sandwiches with family Martinez first meant that Hno Hermelindo had to go chop firewood. Next we had to get the fire going. I’m going to try to describe the "stove" that lots of people who have nothing use. It’s a giant metal barrel filled almost to the top with cement, leaving about a foot of space empty. They then cut out part of the foot of metal barrel. And that’s about it. On top of the cement they have the fire. So we had to keep the fire going -- I was zero help in that (I really should have gone to boy scouts to prepare for the mission), everyone thinks I’m ridiculous because I can’t do things like kill chickens and light fires and make perfect tortillas and because I’m scared of wild dogs -- whatever.  So anyways, grilled cheese was tricky because the fire is really hot and burns the bread if you leave it on the skillet too long, but the cheese never really melted, so I don’t know ha-ha. It was quite the ordeal really.

When we had the sandwiches made, the 2 little kids (Jessica Fernanda 7 and Wilbur Fernando 8) were really hungry of course and we got right to eating. They had never eaten anything like a grilled cheese. They asked what the cheese was, what the bread was, and they ended up taking them apart and eating them all weird because they didn't know how a sandwich was eaten properly. Here in Guatemala they sell regular sandwich bread and American cheese slices at the grocery store, but they are luxuries that the 2 kids had never experienced. It made me sad to see. The kids are really skinny and small, really malnourished. They are in school, but their mom can’t read, so she can’t help them at all with their homework, and so they keep failing their classes. And here there aren't any special programs for kids who are having a hard time. If you don’t pass, you can’t move up, and eventually you just stop going. That is a huge giant reason why I want to help these guys -- because they need lots and lots of blessings!!!!

It’s been neat to teach Hno Hermelindo because he is so humble and teachable. With him it’s so "by the book", we start teaching him a principle, like baptism for example, he gives us his opinion and why he doesn't want to be baptized, we teach him with the scriptures, really simply and directly, he understands, he changes his thinking and wants to obey. I know that I need to be a little more like that, or a lot more like that better said. We just teach him principle by principle, and see changes in him. We were so happy bringing them to church on Sunday! We had to teach him well about keeping the Sabbath day holy, but in the end they understood. 

They are a wonderful family and I love them so much, and we are going to be working hard so that they can get married and baptized this coming Saturday! We've got to work hard, but I just know that it’s what they need and how they can receive lots of blessings. 

I really don’t know what else to tell y’all about this week -- We are working really hard and having wonderful experiences every day. I really love being a missionary. I just know that this is the true gospel. I know it with all my heart. I’m so glad for this chance to be fighting on the Lords team here. There is so much to do, so much we need to do better, and through the Atonement of Jesus Christ each of us can do better in whatever the Lord has given us to do. I testify that this is the true church of Jesus Christ, that he is at the head, that he directs it, and that all people need to hear about it. I love the gospel. And I love being a missionary. 

Have a fantastic week everyone! I really enjoyed receiving some special emails today and am really grateful for the time you take to write me. Thanks!!

 Hermana Gilland

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