April 21, 2014

Week Eighteen: 3 Months in the Making

Area: Chillán
Companion: Hermana Hillary Harris 

Companion's Blog: http://hjhmissionabroad.blogspot.com/2014/04/happy-easter-parable-of-mustard-seed.html


HOLY COW, DO I HAVE NEWS. First of all, we had cambios 

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand ...

HERMANA HARRIS AND I ARE STAYING IN COYQUEN. We're getting a new companion tomorrow. Thus begins the time of the TRIO. She is Latina, which is perfect because our Spanish is going to improve so much. I was so not looking forward to leaving this area. I adore the members and I adore our investigators. I am so grateful that I get to stay for at least 6 weeks longer. This means that I get to spend the next six p-days procrastinating the need to buy recuerdos for your guys. Hey, speaking of, if you could send me a line with like, 3 things of what everyone would be interested in, I would love that. :)

So, with that being said ... on to the next piece of news.

WE HAD OUR FIRST BAPTISM HERE! CESAR AND CAROLINA AND HER DAUGHTER GOT BAPTIZED. Their little daughter that is seven is getting baptized in two months (más-o-menos). They are already preparing for the temple. They are the rock stars of the ward. I basically am in love with their family. I can't even believe this is real life, seriously.

It is so weird to think that they were one of the first families that we contacted when we got here. We talked to NINE people in the forty-five minutes of my first day ... we are teaching one family and we've baptized Cesar and his family. It is incredible to me that these seeds that we planted, in what seems like such a long time ago, are starting to come to fruition. And believe me, this fruit is delicious. It is sweeter than anything that I have ever tasted.

It's been a long time in the making though. From the time that we started teaching Cesar and Carolina, there have always been complications. We couldn't get members to get in their house, they didn't want to commit to a date for baptism, Cesar went outside of town to work for a month and a half ... Satan was working sooooo hard to make sure that they didn't make it. But, luckily, Heavenly Father has been guiding us so much. Yesterday, Hermana Harris was saying a prayer and thanked Heavenly Father for everything that he did for this family and it is SO TRUE. We didn't do anything. I didn't even know Spanish in the beginning. We did such a poor job at verifying that they were keeping commitments. We didn't do all of our teachings the right way. It was SUCH a learning experience with them.

Maria Carolina. She's 13 and my best friend.
She LOOOOVESSSSS One Direction.
Colomba. She's such a firecracker!

Thankfully, Heavenly Father knew that we were trying our very hardest, and he made up the difference. I felt this when I just cried and cried in our first lesson with them because I truly felt the love of the Savior for them. I knew this when we knelt with Carolina last week to figure out when her baptism should be and she got an answer. I saw this when this beautiful family was baptized. AHHHHHHHH, it is so incredible, this being a missionary thing! We sang a special musical number (we'll Bring the World His Truth) with the seminary students yesterday. I looked out at the audience and saw Carolina and Cesar and just felt the gentle tappings of the spirit. I am the Lord's missionary. I am bringing the world his truth, one family at a time. 

Of course, there are so many disappointments. Things fall through. I feel inadequate sometimes. People tell us that we are flat out mistaken (we had a weird lesson with an Evengelica this week). But all of these things are worth it! Heavenly Father balances out these trials with blessings every time. Carolina just hugged and hugged us after her baptism. "Thank you, thank you, thank you for coming to my house," she told us. "You are my angels. I will always have my home open for you." So far, this has been my favorite experience on my mission. I am so excited to just start kicking it with the great investigators we have now to help them progress!!

This baptism has been three months in the making. Everything that we have been working on here in Coyquen has led up to this point. Baaaaaah, it is really incredible! I think about my own progress in these three months and I am just stunned. My Spanish and teaching skills have exploded with diligent study (and that is just going to keep improving). My love for people has exploded. My ability to handle hard things with a smile and a sense of humor ... exploded! I am changing! I am starting to really understand what makes a successful missionary. The key to success is RELYING SOLELY on Heavenly Father. I am still learning how to do this ... but I KNOW that this is what it takes. Every time that I give my all to the Lord, he makes so much more of it than I can.

Case in point? Cesar and Carolina (hija and mamá).

This is our little zone. I LOVE these people. I LOVE THEM! We had a breakfast zone activity last week and completos this week ... it is just so much fun to be with all of the other missionaries in the area.
I am just eternally grateful that I am a part of this great work. I love you all so much!! Please have a wonderful semana!! Remember that Heavenly Father has got it all under control and I will do the same!!

Hermana Blau


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