Monday, April 17, 2017

Not My Will, but Thine

I’m sorry no pictures!! I don’t have my sim card because of the virus and my comp's camera isn’t working... :(((((
hola familia mia!

This week was spectacular. I am so grateful to my Padre Celestial for allowing me to be with my companion.

This week was just incredible.

For starts... Monday, Tuesday, I wasn’t too happy. I was sad and frustrated. I knew I was supposed to be here in Osorno, with my comp, in this ward, in this sector, I had gotten many promptings that this is where I need to be.

But I was tired, worn out and frustrated. We were walking in the street late Tuesday night knocking doors when a thought came into my mind, "Why am I complaining? I am HERE. No amount of wishing I were in another sector or holding on until cambios is going to make the time pass any faster. I just need to accept it."

As I thought about this for a little while, I began laughing at myself, how stubborn I have been, and how foolish. I said a little prayer in my heart asking for forgiveness and I told Padre Celestial I’m sorry and I’m tired of fighting, I’m done with kicking against the pricks. I accept it. I am here. Right now. In Osorno, knocking doors at 9 pm on Los Aleleis. After that little prayer and accepting my circumstances, my attitude changed completely! This has been something that I have been thinking about this week.

Why is it so hard for us to sometimes accept God’s will? Why do we complain, why do we lack the faith to accept it, work hard, and find joy in the journey? It is so much easier when we give up our will for that of Padre’s. He is so kind. He knows sooo much better than we do. He wants us to become like Him, He wants us to achieve our eternal destiny.

Submitting our will to His is the only way that we can truly find happiness and receive all the blessings that He has promised us. Just like the quote on my missionary plaque, we must submit our will to His.

From Tuesday night on, I have been very content. No, it hasn’t been easy, and yes, Satan many times has tried to drag me down again to doubt and despair, but the hope that this Gospel promises us, the hope that accompanies the Resurreccion makes it all possible. That hope makes it all sufferable.

I don’t want to go into a lot of details about what happened in the past, but I wish you guys could see the change that I have seen. I wish you guys could have witnessed the miracle that occurred in me. Life is so good. 

Some funny / sad experiences we have had this week:

This was actually from last week but I forgot to add it. We found a guy named Antonio. He stopped believing in God about 20 years ago and we were able to talk to him. The day we passed by he was home alone so we couldn’t enter. We stopped by the next day with a member and began teaching him.

Come to find out that at 3 pm he lost his job. 4 pm we knocked on his door. 7 pm he got word that his best friend died. It was awesome to be able to teach him about the Resurreccion of Christ and of us and the hope and comfort that this Gospel brings.

He said that he thought that God had forgot about him, and we were able to show him that no, in fact, God sent us to him! It was really special.

In the end, we got his number and he got ours. I told him that he could put "missionaries" for the name of our number because we are always changing companions and he said, "no, I am going to put Jesus Christ". 

A few days later, we were on the same street knocking doors and a woman, very friendly, let us pass by (come in).

We went into her house and began teaching her the first leccion. She was really easy to talk to and listened. It was the best leccion that my comp and I have taught together so far. We both could feel the spirit really strong testifying of our words. It was awesome.

I thought for sure that she would accept our invitation to learn more, but she politely said that she doesn’t really have any interest in learning more about God. It almost broke my heart. Here we were, we had just taught the best leccion ever together as a companionship, the Spirit had testified strongly of our words, yet she wasn’t listening with her spirit. She was listening just to listen, without real intent.

We left with mixed feelings. Sad for her, but content and in fact happy that we were able to feel the Spirit strongly, allowing us to know that we did our part. We did everything we could. I hate agency sometimes....

Yesterday for Easter, we ate lunch with los McArther, the senior couple missionaries here in Osorno. It was really fun. It was us, the elders in our ward and another companionship of hnas. (The hnas are SOOO cool. We’ve already planned a road trip together #trunky)

We had taco salad. It’s been sooo long since I’ve had taco salad!!! MOM for my first meal home I want your enchiladas. Oh! and now that we are on this page, I also want a group of people the in the airport dancing the cueica and playing Chilean tribal music. If you can’t find any... I guess I’ll settle for a mariachi band. :)  

Sooo, back to my story. After lunch we went out to work. Just a normal day knocking doors and trying to motivate one another. It was late in the afternoon.

We started walking up a street. There were 3 young adults drinking under a tree on the other side. They waved at us so we waved back and they started laughing.

We continued up the street and a thought entered my mind. “Talk to them.”

I thought, “Why? They are drinking. It could be dangerous. They look rowdy.”

Then the words of the sister that gave the lesson in soc soc (Relief Society) today entered my mind. She said, "I was walking down from the plaza and saw two young people smoking. I was going to walk by them but then felt that God too loved them, so I took a deep breath and went to go give them a card of Jesus Christ for Easter. I gave it to them and told them that God too loves them and that they are needed and important.”

With those words in my head, I told my comp, “crucemos la calle y hablemos con ellos.” (Let’s cross the street and talk to them) she looked at me like I was nuts but followed.

There was a man near them so I decided to contact him first to kind of scope out how sober the jovenes were. He was rude, but when I glanced at the girl she motioned at me to come over and yelled, “Hey! We want to talk to you.”

I said to my comp, “vamos,” and with a prayer in my heart that God would protect us, we started talking to the girl and her 2 guy friends. They were a little buzzed but still coherent and everything. They invited us to sit with them and began asking us tons of questions about who we were and what we doing. It was awesome. We were able to teach them the first lesson about the Restoration of the Gospel.

The girl was really getting into it and told us that her mom is evangelica and her dad is Catholic but that she has never found a religion that has filled a part that she fills is missing. She said that none of the churches had really left her feeling fulfilled. She was really eager to meet with us again and we will be talking with her tomorrow.

Her friend began joking saying, “haha watch out here comes hermana Soto!” She just looked at him and said, “But this is really interesting. This could be what I’ve been looking for.”

We asked if the next lesson we could do without alcohol and she said of course! It was amazing, especially when walking away I could feel God’s great love that He has for her. I felt that she was going to get baptized and hopefully become hermana Soto!! It was so neat. I am so grateful that I followed that prompting.
That night I called the sister whose words came into my mind, thanking her for sharing that. She almost began crying with emotion that she was able to help influence someone. Life is so good.

I know that God lives. I know that He loves us. I am so grateful for the difficulties and hardships in my life and in the mission. I love my mission. I love every single part of it. It is the best decision ever.

Keep loving, keep trying, keep believing, keep submitting your will to that of God’s and you will see miracles in your life and in the lives of others. Have a great week! 

I love you all!! les amo tanto!

ps yesterday I completed 16 months on the mission. I never thought this would happen....

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