Sunday, April 5, 2015

March 9, 2015- Week 1 in.... Mayorazgo!!

Hey everyone!
Well, as you can see I'm now in Mayorazgo! Tuesday was on of the craziest days ever, definitely the craziest transfers meeting, that's for sure.
Well, this was me and Hermana Lerigeth on our way to the transfers meeting. It sure was hard, the thought of her not being my companion anymore... well, this is my new companion:

Yeah, the transfers meeting sure was nuts! I don't know if I've ever explained the transfers meetings, but after President gives a short message, we all stand up, seperate on the two sides of the room, and he just calls us out and puts us in our new areas/companionships. They are super intense moments. She and I were standing together, awaiting our fates... they called zone after zone, and the only ones that were left were Mayorazgo and Atlixco. President then said, "Ok, now opening an area in Mayorazgo, ward Granjas del Sur, Hermana Lerigeth as hermana leader 1 and Hermana Smith as hermana leader 2." I honestly thought he was talking about the other Hermana Smith for a second, until I remember that she didn't have transfers! I wish I had a photo of what my face was like at that moment...I'm sure it was classic! But we were definitely the happiest people in that room that day! Haha, but yup! We're opening a brand new area, and we've been asked to be the hermana leaders for Mayorazgo. This last week has been a LOT of work, but we are enjoying every single second of it.
One of the little challenges has been the fact that, well, we don't know anyone here! But, the ward mission leader is awesome (actually, the whole ward is incredible) and they've been showing us the whole area all week. We only have a couple of progressing investigators, but we put baptismal dates with 3 of them this week! Janeth has been listening for a long time (her whole family, including almost all of her kids, are already members) but she finally committed to a date, saying that she "can't delay her salvation any longer". Her date is for March 28th! Also, there is Magda and her son Daniel (8). Her husband is less-active, have been assisting for almost a year, but her husband keeps telling her that she's not ready yet to get baptized. Men. Haha. But she is really excited, and loves the church. Daniel is THE smartest 8 year old I have ever met! We just love him! He's asks so many good questions, and he loves the gospel too. We set their dates for April! Other than them, we are getting to know others and asking for lots of references! But, we've been working so much, and it's great! It's a huge difference from what it was like in our other area.
The other challenge is that we are hermana leaders, haha. I really thought that I would be a normal missionary for the rest of my mission but the Lord is full of surprises! But there aren't very many hermanas here (not like Atlixco!), and for that I am grateful. There are 5 other companionships besides us. 3 of them have brand new hermanas, fresh from the MTC. But, it's going to be a great learning experience (we're already learning a lot) and we're excited :) On Friday, we were able to go the mission leadership counsel, and it really helped us to know what we need to do more as hermana leaders. One thing that President talked a lot about was revelation. He gave us 5 steps to recieve revelation, which are:
1. Obedience
2. Work with all our heart, might, mind and strength
3. Study and Develop Christ-like Attributes
4. Fast, Pray, and meditate the story of the rich man (Matthew 19:16-21) and ask ourselves "What more do I need to do?"
5. Have confidance in ourselves that God truly is giving us revelation, and it's not just our own ideas
He also told us that...especially as leaders, it's not our job to give all the answers. Our job is creating an environment where the Spirit will help them recieve their own inspiration and answers. Sometimes that can be hard, and sometimes it's just easier to give them what they're asking for. But, that doesn't help us progress or learn. So that is one of my goals for this transfer, to be better at that.
Yesterday morning, I was studying the lesson from the Ezra Taft Benson manuel before church. I just want to share one of my favorite parts of the lesson (I'm sure a lot of you have already read it).

"I hope we will not live in the past. People who live in the past don’t have very much future. There is a great tendency for us to lament about our losses, about decisions that we have made that we think in retrospect were probably wrong decisions. There is a great tendency for us to feel badly about the circumstances with which we are surrounded, thinking they might have been better had we made different decisions. We can profit by the experience of the past. But let us not spend our time worrying about decisions that have been made, mistakes that have been made. Let us live in the present and in the future."

We like to share Mormon Messages with less-actives, members, non-members...everyone! Haha, but one of our favorites is the one where it talks about Lot's wife and how we should never look back. We shouldn't live in the past, nor dwell on our past mistakes, if we've repented of them. There are so many great things awaiting us in the future, but if we're too caught up on what might have been, or what could've changed if we had done something better, then we're going to miss a lot of opportunities. As a missionary, sometimes it's hard to not let thoughts like that creep into our minds. But God knows our hearts and intentions, and if we don't give our all, our job is repent and try harder. It's one thing I love about transfers - we get the chance to just focus on the present and the future. The past area is behind us, and we did all we could. We just have to keep looking forward and not let the past hold us back.
Anyways, I love this area and I'm so happy to still be with Hermana Lerigeth her last transfer! It's going to be so great!! :) I love you all, and I hope you all have a great week!

Love always,
Hermana Smith
-So....part of the whole "new house"/opening an area thing was that we had no utensils! (or beds, a mirror, a fridge...lots of things haha) So, this is me eating ramon noodles yesterday with...pencils :) Hermana Lerigeth used an eyebrow plucker, haha
-The landlord, Elias, is a little special. I wish I could write all of our experiences with him in this letter, but they will just have to wait. But one thing he does is he sits at the door (sometimes with his wife) all day long. All day. He's pretty funny. But they take care of us, even if it's with a lot of tough love haha

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