Tuesday, August 12, 2014

March 10, 2014- Week 9 in Tehuacan

Well, hello there!

I am extremely happy to announce that this week...WE WORKED!! Haha, and what a fantastic week it was! I feel so blessed every day to be here and enjoy this great work. We had so many great experiences....I hope I have time to share them all!

Well, Monday night, we met with the family of Jose, the 14 year old who wants to be baptized. Let me give you a little background info on Jose. He is the friend of Alejandro and Samuel, two outstanding young men in the ward. While we were in the hospital for the surgery and after, he started attending seminary with them every single day. One day, Alejandro asked us for a Book of Mormon, which we gave him, and explained to us that he had a friend who wanted to be baptized. He is so ready, and he just loves everything about it. It's been amazing to see his excitement to learn the gospel and he already has the goal to serve a mission. Anywho, we went to meet with his father to ask for permission...and we are now teaching his whole family. Jose is going to be baptized on the 29th, and I'm pretty sure that his family will follow soon after! They all came to church yesterday, and his father is such a humble man. He has experienced a lot in his life, but it's really something to see him acknowledge the example that his son is setting. We love all of them so much, and Jose holds a very dear place in our hearts because of his example and decisions.

We also have another investigator with a baptismal date - Pilar, who is going to be baptized on April 6. We're hoping that we're still here to see it, but if not, teaching her has been a great experience! She is a single mom with two kids, who is really struggling after the death of her mom. But we taught the plan of salvation, and she was so overwhelmed with emotion. And she just kept saying, "thank you for giving me this peace. thank you". I've never had to live my life not knowing what is going to happen after we die. For me, it is a really humbling experience to see that knowledge fill someone else's heart and mind through the Spirit, and give them the peace that they need. God's plan is really so perfect...ahh, I love it!

This week was really cool for me, because this was the first time that I really felt like we were being guided by the Spirit as to where we should go. Tuesday night while we were planning, I had a really strong thought that we needed to visit a member in the ward. She is very active, and really happy all the time, but I couldn't escape the thought. When I told my companion, she said, "that's the spirit, Hermana! Tomorrow, we're going to visit her!" And we did, and we found out that she was really struggling emotionally. She had been praying for someone to come and tell her that everything was going to be ok, and that she was doing exactly what she needs to be doing. It was a really awesome experience to help her and follow the Spirit. 

Another instance was on Saturday. Two weeks ago, President Reeves decided that we were going to count street contacts as a key indicator in the mission. The norma de excelencia for this is 70 street contacts in a week, and we decided that we could do it (and we did: 71! this week is 80!) So obviously, we were contacting in the street, and we had the thought that we should go visit a less active hermana in the ward. Well...we never got there. While we were walking there, we contacted a man...and then proceeded to have a 40 minute lesson in the street about the restoration and Heavenly Father. The man had been contacted by the missionaries about 5 years ago, but they never came to his house for a lesson. This man, Lorenzo, knows SO much about the Bible and it was a bit intimiating...but luckily, I think my companion knows more! (She studied in Catholic schools up until her baptism, haha) But it was really awesome to see the Spirit working on his heart. As we testified of the truths of the gospel, we could see that what we were saying was against everything he had believed in...but that he wanted to believe us. After 40 minutes, he accepted our invitaion to church, and agreed to have us come and teach his family. And he came yesterday :) Heavenly Father knows who is ready for the Gospel, and it is something really special to have the opportunity to help bring them back to Him. 

With all of the street contacts and refernces from this week...we have 9 new investigators, but 15 more addresses to visit. We have a lot of work ahead of us, but that's ok :) It's what we're here for! 

"Unless we lose ourselves in service to others, there is little purpose to our own lives. Those who live only for themselves eventually shrivel up andfiguratively lose their lives, while those who lose themselves in service toothers grow anflourish—and in effect save their lives."
President Thomas S. Monson

I have no words for how much I love being a missionary. It is by far the best experience of my life, and I am so blessed to be here, in Puebla Mexico, serving God's children. Continue to pray for missionary experience. Continue to participate in the work of the Lord. I promise that there is no better feeling than seeing someone change through the power of the Atonement. 

I love all of you sooooooooooo much!!!!! This week was so fantastic :) The church is true!

Love always, Hermana Smith

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