Monday, April 9, 2018

April 9, 2018

We went to the caves and waterfall. Again.

So I'm pretty sure last week I did something amazing. I think I helped make an eternal marriage happen! I told one of the single male members here in Ocoa to talk to one of my converts in my other area. So they are now chatting almost every time i see this member. Jokingly, but maybe talking real talk, he told me I might have to come back to visit to be a witness at their wedding!!! And that he really likes her!! So that was probably the highlight of the week!  because I can't say we had the most successful week. We had four baptismal dates planned for the next two weeks, and they all fell through. which is too bad, but we are contacting like crazy to find new people to teach. 

Life is super fun these days. I'm just trying to live it up as much as possible with the time I have left! I've been rereading old journal entries and just thinking about how amazing the mission has really been. It's amazing how much I've grown. Reading my first entries until now. wow haha. I feel so blessed for what I've learned and the testimony that I now have. 

Monday, April 2, 2018

April 2, 2018

You may be asking why I'm a liar. Well.. it's because everyone thinks I like habichuelas con dulce. What is habichuelas con  dulce? The direct translation is sweet beans. Pretty much it's like refried beans with milk and sugar and cinnamon. You can eat it hot or cold but whatever way you eat it, it's terrible. At least I think so. The Dominicans love it, and the week of Easter, it's tradition to make it. So just about every house we went to they gave us some. I'm feelin pretty good that I'm in a new week that doesn't have disgusting traditions.!!

Conference was great. Well the parts we saw...the power went out several times. But our new prophet is starting with a bang! woohooo for revelations from God. 

This week our convert Luis asked me how to pay his money to God. We pulled out the tithing slip and he paid his very first tithe!!. 

There's no better way to spend Easter than as a representative of Jesus Christ. Here on the mission, I've come to love Him so much more. I've come to know Him so much more. I truly stand all amazed at what he did for us. I'm so thankful for my Savior Jesus Christ. He lives, which makes it possible that we all will live again. What joy and what peace He brings. 

We had a dope service project making bread and building rabbit cages. What better combination.

Monday, March 26, 2018

March 26, 2018

I just have to say God works in wonderful ways! It was a truly an inspired thought when about a monthish ago we felt like we should start mutual for the youth. Ever since then we have been doing our best to get the youth programs going. We have been working lots with young men and young women. And this Saturday 5 youth were baptized! Two young men who dress like punks, but who are the best kids ever. Wilson and Yafer. And three young women. Davierica, Estefani, and Rimi. 

They are so great! And the number of attendance on Sundays has grown sooo much with all these wonderful youth, and them bringing their friends! It's so great. They are definitely some future leaders and missionaries! 

Monday, March 19, 2018

March 19, 2018

I've been trying to notice the little miracles lately, and it's really cool! The other day we were headed to an appointment and saw a sweet, tiny old lady on the street sitting all alone. So we stopped and talked to her for a bit. She had a lot to say and it was very clear that she was pretty lonely. Also she's on her way of having 102 years of age!! Not gonna lie. Sometimes I get caught up in only taking my time for people who really have potential of progressing and getting baptized. But I've been trying to slow down and just help everyone. Obviously this fragile old lady probably won't enter the waters of baptism in this life, but it was such a tender moment to just sit and talk to a daughter of God. 

Also as Hermana leader you gotta make sure all the sisters are good and healthy. There is this companionship that I hadn't heard from in a while. I kept thinking about calling them but then got distracted with something else. But finally a lil later I actually did call, and it turns out the hermana was pretty sick and needed medical help, but hadn't called anyone. I'm thankful for the Spirit guiding me in every little thing.
And the last little miracle. Our investigator Wilson, who will be baptized next Saturday, told us this week about a dream he had. In it he was getting baptized and helping us teach others the gospel. After he explained his dream he said in the sweetest way. "I just felt proud to be a member."

I'm thankful for the little miracles God gives us everyday! 

Monday, March 12, 2018

March 12, 2018

Life is good! We are teaching some real nice people. We just had transfers, which means I'm in my second to last transfer. It also means that our district changed a lot, which is too bad. It was almost an all Utahan district. The elders were talking about this new exercise routine that after a certain amount of time, it's supposedly guaranteed that you will be able to dunk the ball after. It doesn't even matter how tall you are. haha So now I'm doing this jumping workout to help me dunk. So watch out everyone. I'm gonna come back dunking. 

The other day we were walking trying to find a house and there were some kids playing baseball. One of them called me over and asked where I'm from, so I responded. Then he said with a wink, "Ah, you've got my visa rubia. Let's get married and you can take me to the United States."

I was in shock and started busting up. I asked him how old he was and he said 18, but his friends behind him were saying he's 10, which was obviously the correct answer. Then I just walked away laughing. But the house wasn't in that direction so we had to turn around and pass them again and as we passed, the 10 year old said,
"Rubia, look I've even got armpit hair" to try and convince me he was 18. Then he took off his shirt and pointed at his armpit!!. 

I was dying. You hear stuff like that about the visa from men almost on the daily, but this lil 10 year old kid. Yikes. What has this world come to. But yeah, gave me a good laugh. 

No one in this lil branch plays the piano, and I'm the music leader here and sometimes I literally have no idea what the songs are, so i just kinda try to start and pretend i know what song it is, and then everyone joins in so it's all good. But dang, this Sunday our branch president picked the most obscure hymns that i had never even seen. so i did my classic fake it till ya make it and just wait for everyone else to join in and sing, but noooo one knew these songs either. It was a pretty rough sacrament meeting. Everyone just trying to sing every hymn the way they thought was right. hope it didn't scare away the first timers in church. 

So yeah, the mish is dope and fun and cool. 

Monday, March 5, 2018

March 5, 2018

The dopest baptism!! Two amazing youth and the most wonderful couple!! Luis and Cruzita


The first mutual this rama has had in ages!! It was very succesaful and fun! 

SUCH A GOOD WEEK! This week four amazing people entered the waters of baptism. Yoaly, Oeshly, AND LUIS and CRUZITA!! 

Yoaly and Oeshly are wonderful young ladies. The young women's program is really coming along these days with new converts and reactivations of less actives. Also this branch had their first mutual that was very successful. The youth are amazing. In church yesterday we were explaining tithing to one of our converts and so she paid and then all the other youth went and grabbed the tithing slips and put whatever bit of money they had in their envelopes and gave it to president. So tithing is the new cool thing to do here in Ocoa! So great to see youth giving the little that they have to God. 

But anyways, the baptism was so amazing and wow! It was one of the most amazing things to see my favorite couple get baptized together. I've learned sooo much from them. Especially Luis. I learned that sacrifice is love. He sacrificed so much to enter the waters of baptism. He gave up his smoking habit that he had since the age of 13. It was hard for him, but he did it for the love he had for Jesus Christ and his church. He sacrificed working on Sundays, even though those were some of his busiest days on his avocado farm. But with every little sacrifice he made, he did it with so much love and so much desire to follow the commandments of God.
When he entered the waters of baptism I couldn't decide if it was better to watch him or his wife, Cruzita. I will never forget the sweet look on her face as she watched her husband be baptized. Such a tender smile with such happy eyes full of love for Luis and for the decision they made together to be baptized. At the end, all four of the newly baptized members bore their testimonies and the spirit was soo strong. Ahhh I can't explain it. And then the awkward but still spiritual part was when I was leading the last hymn that talked about the example of Jesus Christ and I just start shedding tears in front of everyone and trying to sing with them. But the spirit was just testifying that these four people really did just do exactly what Jesus Christ taught us, and were baptized in his church and I just felt beyond humbled that God allowed me to play a small part in it all. Definitely one of the best nights on my mission. I love all my converts and people I've taught but Luis and Cruzita will always have a very special place in my heart.  

Monday, February 26, 2018

February 26, 2018

That was weird seeing a Utah license plate.

The new way I entertain myself is seeing how many lil things I can get in my comp's hair without her noticing. 

Yo yo yo. So there is this big river we have to cross to climb this mountain to an area that has some really great people progressing. So we go there about once a week even though it's quite the trek to get there.

And we have this lil dog that follows us everywhere. She's a Chihuahua. When I started here in this area, she started following us, but then would leave us for several days and then find us again. But now she's always with us. We don't even touch her or give her food, but she just sleeps in front of our house and walks with us to every lesson. Her name is Baby. So anyways it's always hilarious because she always crosses the river with us. She's quite the lil swimmer, her head just peaking up above the water until she makes it to the other side.  But this last week the river was huge cause of all the rain that's been comin down. So we get to the river and there are these like 20 year old men carrying people across the river for 50 pesos. They even told us they would do it for free, but of course me and my comp were like heck no, and we crossed the river on our own. Baby, as always, is following us. So she starts crossing the river. Usually the current takes her a little ways but she makes it out. But this time the river was just so strong she kept going under the water and the current was taking her pretty far. Everyone knows Baby by name, so everyone was yelling !Baby Baby!. Finally one of the guys carrying people across ran and threw Baby onto dry land and Baby ran ahead of us, probably humiliated haha. I was joking with the people watching that Baby got baptized and then the guy who threw her across asked if we baptize dogs. haha Woops. But yeah, probably one of the funnier things thats happened lately. 

 Also one of the miracles of training is that we get to go to the temple! ahhhhh I love the temple! It was so needed!