April 13, 2015

Week Sixty-Nine: Last Zone Conference

President and Sister Arrington
Area: Collao
Companion: Hermana Quintana

Dear familia,

Things just keep getting more and more exciting here in the mission. I have practiced more than I have in my entire mission during these past couple of weeks (thanks to that Go, Diego, Go doll that always wants to listen to me) and I feel like I am becoming a much better teacher. There are some missionaries that I feel coast to the end ... but I am going out with fire. Actually, I started studying 12 weeks over again ... because I really want this time that I have dedicated to the Lord to be worth it.

This week, a girl from one of my favorite families (Valentina Puchi), came home from her mission. She has been coming out with us super frequently and I have loved it so much. She radiates the Spirit and goodness. It has been so much fun to have her with us every day -- especially because she had such a similar but different mission experience to the one we live here in Concepcion. We talk and talk about the different things that happened to her on her mission ... it helps me to keep that focus!

We had ZONE CONFERENCE THIS WEEK!! It was so awesome. We talked about finding people to teach and I felt soooo inspired. The field really is soooo white now. I know that! I know that there are people that are waiting for me here in this sector! So amazing to think about! Zona Andalien (the zone that I am in right now) also had the chance to sing a special musical number. I love to sing sooo much! On the mission, I have really seen how powerful the influence of music can be in our lives. I love bearing testimony through my voice.

Speaking of testimonies, something happened this week that I have been dreading for the good majority of my mission ...

I had to give my goodbye testimony in the Zone Conference. Ohhhhh, it was heart breaking. I still have so much time that is left, but as I sat down from bearing my testimony, I just cried. Ah, I don't want to go! The mission has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. It has passed by like a dream ... so so so fast. At lunch (we ate CHILI ... for the first time in CHILE. Oh, I was so happy), I went to take pictures with everyone and I wanted to sit down and talk to everyone personally for a good long time. Every minute counts!!

With Hermana Quintana
After zone conference, we had a mini-cambio with the Hermanas that we live with (Hna. Shupe, Hna. Ponce, and Hna. Lance). I stayed in the sector with Hna. Shupe and Hna. Ponce and we had a great time. I have been working really hard to get to know the sector and all of the members and investigators that we have here. Heavenly Father has blessed me sooo much. I feel really comfortable leading the sector and helping the Hermanas to set goals. I continue hitting my stride in different ways every week.

This actually really came in handy this week ... because Hermana Quintana got sick on Thursday with the cold or flu or something (she doesn't even know what it is haha ... just something nasty), and she was soooo miserable. I love this girl so much. She just packed her tissues and kept on working anyways. But, eventually, she was too sick to even get out and work. The really awesome thing about Collao is that there are a ton of young adult ladies that come out with us all of the time ... so it wasn't that hard to find someone that could stick with Hermana Quintana while I went out to work.

I was with a new convert named Francisca. She got baptized in September and is SO AWESOME! Anytime that we call her and she is free, she comes out with us or we bring people to her apartment to teach her. At first glance, she is a little timid and shy, but I was sooo surprised when I went out with her. In the lessons, she participated without me saying anything. She even contacted people on the street!! Sometimes, we judge people too quickly when it comes to missionary work. I know that anyone can be a missionary ... and I think that everyone should!! It is the best decision that anyone can make!

I thought a lot this week about my testimony of the church. I loved that talk in General Conference that talked about seeing things with new eyes. Sometimes, I think that I take for granted how wonderful the gospel is and what a blessing it is in my life ... simply because it has always been there. I studied the Restoration of the Gospel this week really deeply ... and I took some time to think about Joseph Smith and the First Vision. Can you imagine Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appearing to someone? When I really stopped and thought about it ... it was something that seemed so incredible to me. What a miracle! 

I am so grateful for the miracle of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in my life. I am so grateful for the new beginnings that it gives us every second of every day! I hope that I can always live up to the expectations of my Heavenly Father. I want to be someone that he can count on for anything. I love Him so much!

I love you all! I hope that you are enjoying the spring showers and what not. I pray for you frequently!!!!! Have a great week!!!


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