April 27, 2015

Week Seventy-One: Yes, I Know That My Savior Loves Me

Area: Collao
Companion: Hermana Quintana

Dear familia,

This week ... this week was awesome. I keep learning over and over again from the people that I am serving. They are amazing!!

In the beginning of the week, I was needing to feel a little bit of love from Heavenly Father. I was feeling a little bit down ... just one of those off days. In these types of situations, I always lay down how I am feeling on the table for Heavenly Father and say, "I am doing all that I can ... help me to feel of thy love." I was humbled humbled humbled by the answers I felt!

First of all, we had a mini cambio with Hermana Bucarei and Hermana Valle. I went with Hermana Valle to her sector, Chillancito. I went on a mini cambio with Hermana Valle when she had her new conference, so it was fun to be back together again. She has grown SO MUCH! I was amazed by the changes that I was able to see in her. The mission is such a miracle. 

Anyways, there was one point in the cambio that I started looking through the pictures in her camara and saw people from Coyquen!! She served there a couple of months ago and I relished every single picture. Oh my heck ... that toddler was a baby when I served there. That woman was pregnant!! What was her name again?? I was soooooo ... I don't know what I felt in that moment. Old? I guess I have a little bit of time in the mission now, huh?

All I could think was ... I am probably never ever ever going to see these people again. I would give everything that I own to see just a few of them. These feelings ... only a year and a couple of months of not seeing these people. I can't imagine how I am going to be five years from now. Ayaya.

After the mini cambio, we were running around the sector getting ready for the new conference of this cambio. We had sooo many different things to accomplish and so many little mini cambios that we were going to have to do to have everything work out ... it was a little bit stressful. But the morning before the conference, we heard that there was a man that had died that everyone in the ward knew and loved. They were holding the funeral at our chapel and needed our help. Of course, we were super willing to help out. This guy was a Patriarch here in Concepcion, but he moved to Chillan after realizing that he had cancer to be closer to his daughter.

We were talking with one of the ladies from our ward about the Patriarch when she mentioned, "I am going to go to the chapel a little bit early to help out Efigenia." My heart stopped. "EFIGENIA??" I asked. Efigenia is one of my most favorite people in Chile. In my first couple of weeks in the mission, she showed me SOOO MUCH love. I was never able to say goodbye to her ... because I was switched out of Coyquen a Sunday that she was visiting her sick father in the campo ... My mind started whirling like crazy. Efigenia was in my capilla of Collao ... and her father was the Patriarch.

After making a couple of more visits, we headed over to the chapel. Oh my word. There were sooo many people there. This man was an incredible spiritual giant ... and everyone loved him. I walked into the chapel and was STUNNED ... because I saw half of Coyquen. I didn't even have to give every thing that I owned. I was able to see all of these people that I love soooo much. They remembered me. They hugged me like there was no tomorrow ... and I was able to hug them back and support them in this difficult time. Ohhhh, Heavenly Father loves me so much.

I don't know how He does it ... but somehow ... everything works out perfectly.

The funeral was soo beautiful. I want to have something like that. A member of the Seventy was there and he gave one of the most beautiful talks that I have heard in Chile. I felt so impressed by the now silent example of this Patriarch. He did so much good just serving the best that he could where he was at. His life was completely consecrated to the Lord ... and he got so many blessings in return. I want to be like that in my life.

After the funeral, we went to pick up our daughter for the day. Her name is Hermana Graham from Arizona. She is such a cute girl and is really talented. We were able to do divisions and I took her to all of the places that I went on my first mini cambio here almost a year and a half ago. Talk about full circle.

The miracle of the mini cambio happened as follows ... we were walking at the end of the day and we didn't have any citas super fijas ... so we decided to go and contact the house of a kid that I contacted the other week. I usually don't contact people that are younger than 16 ... because I feel like if I was 13 and someone asked me for my address and phone number, that would be frowned upon by society. But the other week, we were waiting for a member to meet up with us and I was talking to EVERYONE. I said hi to this kid that was riding his bike ... and he suddenly stopped. I didn't really have any intentions to contact him, but I felt like I should ... so I got his address and his phone number and told him that we would pass by another day.

When we found his house, he was there with his mom and his siblings. When we were sharing with them, I felt the spirit sooo strongly. Heavenly Father wants this whole family to get to the temple. I can just feel it! We were able to find this family and one other person ... just in that day! Ahhh, it was incredible and a direct answer to the fast that we started that day to find people that were going to progress. Amazing.

There was a baptism this week! Rodrigo was an investigator of GOLD that the elders have been teaching for a couple of weeks. He was searching for the truth and was able to find it in the Gospel. We had a great baptismal service for him followed by a stellar spur of the moment noche de hogar. The planning for this noche de hogar consisted of 5 minutes taken away from comp. study ... but it turned out really great! After, we started walking home with Rodrigo, because he lives super close to us and the road is a little bit dangerous that we have to take to get there.

At one point, we walked by a bus stop and from the bench, a man called out, "Hey, help us! They are trying to rob us!!" Hermana Quintana grabbed my wrist and said, "Walk fast, they want to rob us. We need to get out of here!" We started to quicken our pace but Rodrigo went back. Before we could do anything, he pulled a young couple away from the bus stop and the two robbers and started walking towards us. I have no idea what he did to stop those guys from robbing ... but I think that Heavenly Father was protecting all of us in that moment. We headed straight for the house, amazed. Heavenly Father is amazing.

This is Hermana Quintana's last week in the mission ... and that is crazy because that means that my last weeks are coming up. I can't believe it. I can't believe it. This week, I started to read the Book of Mormon again. I stop after reading every page and pray to know if the things that I read are true. And every time, I feel that it is. There is a new power and clarity that has come into my life in these past couple of days that I cherish. I love the Book of Mormon! I love the gospel!!

Know that I have you all in my prayers every day. I read a great talk by President Hinckley yesterday that made me sooo grateful for my amazing parents. I sure do love my family!! I hope that you have a great great week!!! LOVE YOU!


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