Dear Family and Friends,
Things are going great this week. We were able to have a wonderful zone conference. We talked about the goals for the mission for this next year. It is wonderful to see the work President Maynes does. We also talked about integrity. Integrity is something that I have never thought too much about. It determines if God can trust us and ultimately if we can live with Him again. These are some of the questions that I asked myself: Can my word be bought with money or anything? Are there loop holes in my word? Do I keep my promises? We were also given the chance to make goals .... and for me I made them for the rest of my mission. It was just wonderful to feel the Spirit whisper things to me. I felt God's love so powerfuly. After the conference we had more time than we thought we would and went to try back with some people. I was just beaming with happiness and was able to bear my testimony to some many people. Afterwards we went back to see a family that we have tried for 2 months now. We finally got in! I was so amazed at this woman. The lesson went so smoothly and we are going to see her again tomorrow.
Lately, it seems like Satan is putting his little head in all of the ward. I hate seeing the saddness and trials of others. Hilda especially is struggling. She asked us this question, which I have asked in my life as well: I am trying to do everything, keep the commandments, go to church and for what? It just seems like it gets harder and harder. I just can't do it anymore. Her and her family have been attacked almost unceasingly. Again it is mostly financial. Juan's boss is not paying them what he should and did not pay him at all this week. Hermana Rios and I prayed so much that we would know what to do. Yesterday, during my study time, I was looking for anything to help her. I then read the talk, "Waiting on the Lord, Thy Will be Done." And then I found this:
I have often pondered, Why is it that the Son of God and His holy prophets and all the faithful Saints have trials and tribulations, even when they are trying to do Heavenly Father’s will? Why is it so hard, especially for them?
This was Hilda's question. The talk then answered what to do and why. I am so glad that Heavenly Father answers our prayers. Our ward is struggling with unity, and this weekend Hermana Rios and I both fasted that we would know how to help the ward. Yesterday, we had so many people that were supposed to be coming to church.....like 10 or more. After a hard meeting, we got a call 15 minutes before church started that a member wouldn't be able to go pick up a less active. This lady, Juanita, is struggling so much. She told us last week, "I feel like it would be better if I had never known the church." This broke our hearts. So she really needed church yesterday. So I paniced a little and asked some people if they could help us. Then the Serranos walked through the door. I guess with the look of despiration on my face, and my begging plea to go get her. They went. Again Heavenly Father answered my prayer. I still felt so much weight on my shoulders for the ward, that I just wanted to cry. It was fast and testimony meeting and I decided that I had to bear my testimony. I got up and told them the little that I know. I know that God knows and loves me. Because of that I know that He has blessed me to have the restored gospel in my life. I am so glad that He has blessed me to feel love for others. I feel like this is the most powerful thing I have ever felt. I think I really spoke from my heart yesterday. After Sacrament Meeting, I talked to the YW leader, she saved my day! She talked about her struggles and her need to make a new friend. We talked about Juanita and Hna. Ruiseco and their need for friendship. She realized that she didn't have a lot of friends. Everyone has always said hi....but during the week nothing. She has decided to make a friend out of these women.....not just for them, but for her. She fixed so many of my little problems in my head. I am so grateful for wonderful members. Hna Garcia, will now go and pick up Juanita's girl for YW and talk to her during the week and we are now having an FHE at her house tonight.
We also were able to attend a RS conference this weekend. We were singing with our ward. It was powerful. They talked about the book Daughters in My Kingdom. They also shared stories of women from around the world and in the stake and how RS has helped them. One lady told of her story. She was pregnant and got diagnosed with breast cancer. She decided right after she found our that she needed to talk to her RS president. She knew she could receive revelation for her. The baby was born prematurely and had to be woken up and fed every two hours during the night. She was going through chemo. A sister from her ward would come in her PJs every night and stay there to take care of the baby. She said they did much more, but with every act the Spirit was in her home more and more. I loved this story. Another one told us just having someone come and give her a hug and sit by her when she was new to the ward. We only need a moment and we can serve.
We are working super hard and I am so excited to see the work move forward. Sometimes I wonder why I haven't seen lots of "success" or what others would say is success. But I know that God is doing things with our efforts. No effort is wasted. I am so glad that I have had the chance to be in this area for such a long time. I love the people so much. I feel their love as well. I can't wait to bring you all to know these people. I know that God lives. He listens to our prayers. He can help us feel His love when we need it. I know that God is all powerful...and all loving. I am so glad that I can share what I know with others. I am so blessed. Thank you for your prayers, letters and love!