This week has been a hard one but that is okay, "Come what may and love it right?!" This past week I hit my year mark in the mission. I cannot believe that I have already been out here for a year and I only have 6 months left. Realizing this made me reflect on what has happened in the past year and all that I have learned. The person I was a year ago is not the same and I am so thankful for the growth I have had since I have been out here. One thing that I know for sure is that I am a child of God and this is his work. This is the most important work that we could do while we are living here on the earth. Life honestly can't get better than right now. This may now be the best 18 months of my life, but it is for sure the best 18 months for my life.
We are teaching 2 really solid men. They both love the Book of Mormon and we text them everyday to remember to read and to pray. They are progressing really well, the only thing they won't do is come to church. I have always wondered why coming to church is the biggest obstacle for people and why as missionaries we can't force people to come to church. I guess one of the hardest and most frustrating lessons that I have learned is that everyone has their agency and we can't do anything about it. They could know that everything is true and have a testimony of prayer, Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon and still not decide to come to church. This has been really frustrating for me, but I have learned that it is all in the Lord's time.
An example of the Lord's timing is about 4 months ago, I was knocking in an apartment complex with Hermana Enriquez. We knocked on this door and the lady that answered told us that she already knew 2 of the elders that used to stop by about 8 months ago. She went on to tell us that she didn't have time at the moment, but we could come by again in a few weeks. I wrote down in my planner so I wouldnt forget, but of course what did I do?? I forgot. Anyways fast forward to about a month ago. It was the first day with my trainne and we were knocking in apartment complex. We knocked on a door and the lady that answered said that her daughter used to take the discussions and lives just a few doors down. The thought suddenly came to my mind that this was the lady that I had met. I started running and told Hermana Walton just to follow me because we needed to talk to her. We found her home that day, her name is Lily. She made it very clear that she would listen to us but would never convert. After a week or 2 of working with her, we got discouraged and started saying that the gospel would never change her life. So we decided to give her as a referral to the english elders because she also speaks english and they decided to try and work with her. Well low and behold, this Lily has been reading the Book of Mormon, praying, coming to church and has a baptismal date. Sometimes it is not the right timing or the right people but if we pray about it and if we do the will of our Heavenly Father, everybody wins. The gospel changes lives.
I read a talk this week called "The Atonement and Missionary Work" by Elder Holland, and it is amazing. Espcecially the last part, it made me start to cry. I have also been studying in Alma 26, and have been able to relate it to my life and missionary work, it is actually quite funny. I love the scriptures, and I have grown to love them even more on my mission. This week we had a combined meeting for the missionaries and once again we sang "God Be With You till We Meet Again," that song seriously gets me everytime. I said goodbye to an old companion, Hermana Munyer, and some other old friends. Life is good and I am happy! Have a great week everyone!
"COME WHAT MAY AND LOVE IT"