Hola mi familia!
Today, instead of Pday we had a Multi-Zone conference here in Portoviejo. President Dennis came with his wife and the asistants and it was actually really cool. We brought a sack-lunch and we heard a couple of messages. They talked about obedience (and lots more, but this part was my favorite) They talked about how us, as missionaries, need to raise the bar. Change. Become consecrated missionaries. How to really change, and be converted. I am (of course) excited to go home and see you guys. But la verdad, am truly heart broken to leave this part of my life behind. I am terrified that I will go home and fall back into the old "me" ... it isnt that I was a bad person, its just that God spent so much time and effort to make me who I am that I am scared that I will go home and forget that.
Its not just the missionaries that need to raise the bar. The families of the church are under attack. We live in the time prophetized (haha.... I hope im not inventing words, English is hard) by the prophets of old and we need to do what we can to stay in the right path. Do I kneel to say my prayers? Do I do my family home evenings? Do I read the scriptures every day? Am I keeping the Sabbath Day Holy? These are questions I will be asking myself when I get home.
This week (we are still in trio) has been interestingly long. I read my email from the week pasada and realized just how sad it sounded. I just wanna take a minute and say PERDÓNENME. This week I realized what the problem was. ME. My attitude! I had lost sense of my purpose and started to see the negative in everything. Today helped me realize that maybe our result level is low. But if I truly TRUUUULY give it my best I can sleep peacefully at night knowing that God sees my efforts and I will be blessed for what I give here.
I may not have much time left but I will give all of my heart to this glorious work. I havent been the best missionary, the smartest, the strongest, the most obedient, the most succesful. BUT I CAN ALWAYS CHANGE. We are changing, all of us! Everyday! Its a decision that we make to be the best that we can. To truly become concecrated. I have made covenants with a God who WANTS to bless me. But literally CAN NOT do so unless I obey Him. Not only obey, but be happy doing it.
This week was especially hard. There is a woman who´s name is Lorena. She is an amazing woman with so much faith. Last wednesday we extended a baptismal date and she accepted. To be baptized this 7th of november she would have to get married one week earlier. She is 42 years old, absolutely in love with her best friend who has lived with her for more than 15 years. He is sick with a variety of sicknesses and the thought of a temple marriage touched her heart. In her prayer before we left she said "anhelo casarme y bautizarme. Gracias padre por enviarme estas dos angeles." (She longs to get married and baptized. She thanked God for sending her two angels) after weeks of looking and searching we found someone who was willing to progress... but that night Lorena was sent to the emergency room. She had a stroke.
She is okay, and is now in therapy and is at home as well.
We dont know why the things that happen, happen. But I am sure that God is loving. And all knowing, and He will make sure that everything turns out right.
This week (once again) my perspective has changed. Maybe the results I want arent here yet. Maybe my goals are just out of reach... maybe the sector is still hard, the sun is still strong, my companions are still imperfect, and I am still impatient...... But my attitude is different. I know that I will be going home soon. But I also know, and promise that with the little time that I have left I will give all that I have. In hopes to some how repay God even the smallest portion of what I owe him. Ive spent all of my mission in hopes of becoming the "perfect" missionary or what we call a "concecrated" missionary. But I have FINALLY realized something....Being a concecrated missionary isnt the goal. The goal is to give it our all, to work hard everyday, to stay focused, and in the process of doing so we truly become converted and concecrated. Its inevitable. I, with all my many imperfections, will become a little bit more like my Savior.
Im sorry that this email is so long, and maybe a little preachy.... but I truly hope that you guys can read and think about what ive said. and to my missionary friends reading this... if there is no time to read all of this now print it out and read it later. I hope that in some way, Ive been able to help.
Even though we are all far away, I know that our love for God keeps us close.