my goodness, what a week!
|Such an INCREDIBLE couple!|
what a CONFERENCE!!! holy spiritual BANQUET!!!!!!!! never before in my life have i felt more wrapped up in what they were saying.. and it FLEW BY! sista mendoza and i were wondering where the time went... was it like that for anyone else? i failed--i have notes with your names written all overrrrrrr them and i wanted to comment on specific talks that made me think of you. just know that i was THINKING OF YOU ALL ENDLESSLY! en serio. i love conference. i am so grateul for the gospel.
remember that girl i mentioned a couple weeks ago named kristen? well last night a guy came in that i met awhile back with sister story and his name is will--what are the odds that some of the most incredible people i meet on my mission have the same name as my parents?!
anyway. sister story and i were at the temple and we met this guy from gilbert, az, aka utah relocated. tonsssssss of members. but he's not one. he is absolutely FASCINATED by mormonism. we talked to him for foreverrrrrr at the temple and i told him to come to the battalion. and yesterday he totally CAME. he went on the tour and loved it. he has so many sincere questions. its amazing to see him in search of the truth. when we were out at gold panning he was asking me questions and (because we weren't in the tour where we can't be spiritual) i let him have it. i THREW DOWN testimony so hard that i was legitimately shaking. i testified about the plan of salvation. about temple marriage. about the restored gospel. then i straight up said (actually the spirit said it), "you know this is true." and he was jsut quiet. then he changed the subject. so he doesn't want to accept it now, but he knows its true. i told him that his spirit recognizes the truth and thats why he's soooo drawn to the gospel. it's because it's the the TRUTH and it's what we want! he'll come around, i know he will. he's surrounded by members and missionaries, and eventually, he'll open his heart enough to experiment on the word and not just research it.
speaking of opening their hearts, we had the most beautiful experience ever this past week. we're totally still seeing blessings from our fast. we totally fasted again because we want more blessings, haha. (it was actually our district's idea--they are so nice to suggest to fast for us!!) hno chavez is soo close. it's ridiculous how close he is. but it's SO COMPLICATED with him because he's so elect, so chosen, so prepared, and SO READY that all we can do is invite him to be baptized! but then he feels pressured and blah blah blah.. so we've tried to be careful with what we say... but in our appointment last week he was talking about how he wants to prepare by strengthening his faith, going to church, learning more... etc and i was like, "um hello you big dummy that's called ENDURING TO THE END which is what WE ALL NEED TO DO AAAAAAAAFTER BAPTISM DUHHHHHH" and then sister mendoza just threw down and invited him to be baptized on april 9th. he said he'd need to pray about it. and then, this was the moment. i've wanted my whole mission to just throw down to the "i need to pray about it" comment with, "OKAY lets pray about it RIGHT NOW entonces." so we did. i closed the door and got on my knees and HE said the prayer. and it was beeeeeeautiful. so sincere. so guided by the spirit. so powerful. we stayed on our knees just waiting while the spirit casi made my heart and brain explode.. and then he said yes. just like that. and then he smiled reeeeeeeeeeally big. and then he stood up and started pacing and jumping a little bit... and he said he was excited. he said it, not us! but we were bursting!!!!! it was shocking, seriously, and such a powerful experience. but, because our heavenly father loves us SO much he gave us agency, hno chavez has decided to go against that spiritual witness he has received time and time again, and is saying we're pressuring him again. it's devastating. but we have faith. we know our heavenly father hears our prayers and is aware of us. and LOVES hermano chavez SOOO much that he wants him to enters the waters of baptism and THEN try to be perfected, not the other way around! ah. i know things will work out.
He loved conference. He said his heart skipped when he even heard the mention of Thomas S Monson and that he could hardly wait to hear what he had to say to the world. Hno chavez came to all four sessions of conference and if you could only see his notes! I know i'll come around. I don't know when, but I know that when he does he will be a leader and it will be a lasting conversion.
one of the new sisters and i were talking last night about the mission and what an enormous blessing it is to be a missionary and what we've learned... being here gives us just the tiniest taste of what it must be like for our father in heaven. he loves us. answers our prayers. gives us EXACTLY what we ask for and sooo much more, but then we go against that light and knowledge. sometimes we fail. we mess up all the time. we go against what we know is right. we are prideful and sinful and lazy. just like our investigators won't get their lazy bums out of bed to go to church, or read five stinkin minutes of the word of god, or--saddest yet-- decide to wait on the road to damascus and not enter the waters of baptism after the answer was CLEARLY given MULTIPLE times that that was indeed the correct action on the correct day. sigh. i feel tired. i really do, i feel exhausted over this dear man. i can't even imagine how my dear heavenly father must feel about me: my prideful, egotistical, selfish me. but we know that despite alllllllllllllllllllll of this... He is there. He is calling out, reaching out, and guiding us with unfailing energy and love. He is perfect. I am so thankful for His love and example, and for the example of our Savior that helps us know how to live and love and invite others to come unto Him and the Father. I am beyond words grateful to be a missionary, and to feel and understand the mas minimo parte de este amor de nuestro padre celestial. His love is overwhelming!
"there is no shortage of God's love in the universe, just in our doing what is necessary to feel it."
the gospel's true. our prophet and apostles bear witness of the restoration. may we open our mouths and use the many many resources we have to proclaim the Good News.
Know i love you. Please go to mormon.org and make your profile. Please please please I beg you.
Thank you for your love, your words, and your example.