Monday, September 28, 2015

A Slow Week...

Well, this week was another slow week, and so I feel like I don´t have much to share. The feria is going on here still, with lots of rides so it seems like there still aren´t very many people at home or in the streets. It rained every day and so every day I got completely soaked, and it has been really cold so its all just been super fun jajaja but it is also all apart of the mission experience! 

1. So, one night we were walking home, and were a little far from the house, when this guy in this car, with his wife or something and just randomly asks us, "estan seguras que estaran salvos" and " Estan listas a estar ante de Dios si El vendria ahorita?", in english, are you sure that you will be saved and are you ready to meet God if He came right now. They were interesting but valid questions, but the thing that was funny was what he did next, just citing a bunch of scriptures from the bible and talking about how all we need to do is believe. We tried to talk to him and explain that it is not just believing but also doing. But he just kept citing scriptures about how all we need to do is believe and we will be saved.... 

2. We were contacting this family as we were walking in the street and asked them there names, the older lady, probably the grandma, told us her name was Micaela, and then her granddaughter sitting next to here also told us her name was Micaela, and the daughter told us her name was Maria. Okay, that is fine, all is well, but moments later another lady walks up and tells us that Maria is her sister, and when we ask her name she says Maria as well... okay, well then I guess you all are just Micaela´s and Maria´s it was funny. We always seem to catch people in their lies even without trying.
Sherlie and Antoni
So, these guys are a young couple that we have just started teaching, and were references from some people in the ward in Las Americas, and they are pilas! They have so much potential and I know that they are going to get baptized!

We have only met with them once, but Hermana Feliz and I are already in love with them, I mean they are just so cool and have such a strong desire to learn more about the gospel. 

In our first visit with them we had planned to just get to know them and to give them a brief introduction to the restoration, but we ended up teaching like half of it. And they totally understood it! As we were explaining they would just keep nodding their heads and then say, and ask questions and then be like oh okay, so that makes a lot of sense. We left them a pamphlet and the next day when we passed by to just see how they were doing they had already began reading it, and Sherlie had already finished it. PILAS!

We invited them to come to church and they said yes, that they were interested in coming, and so the Hermano, who gave us the reference arraged to pick them up. When we called them on Sunday morning they said that they were still coming and just waiting for the Hermano to stop by and pick them up. But there were some problems and church started but they never showed up. Later, we found out that the Hermano didnt actually know exactly where they lived, and was driving around trying to find them, at the same time that they had walked out of their house to try and find him, and I guess just never ran into eachother. And the hermano didnt have their phone numbers to call them either... ugh, it was all just a bit of a diaster, but they were understanding and are going to come and watch conference with us this weekend. As well as tonight we are going to have a FHE with them and a bunch of other members from the ward. 

But, please keep them in your prayers. They have a lot of potential and I can just see them getting baptized and entering the temple to be sealed! They are already having trials already as the pastor from their church told them that he loves them and wants them in his church. But we shall see about that :)

well, that is it for the week, not to exciting. But I just want to let all of you know that I love you guys and appreciate your support and prayers. Even though I am far away, I can feel them and am so grateful for such a strong support system and family!

los quiero!

Hermana Loo

Just a bunch of random picutres. With a pig, in Olinte, with Hna. Aguilar (excuse the wild hair) and with some random huge apples that this guy in the street gave us jajaja made me think of the one time at home that the elders came over to eat dinner and the one elder freaked out by the huge apple that mom had bought jajaja

Monday, September 21, 2015

Finding and Teaching

Well, this week has been really slow. It was independence day on Tuesday so this entire week there has been a huge fair here in Xela, and so like all this week there was nobody in the street´s and hardly anyone at home, just mormons and chuchos (dogs), but here are a few things that I thought I would share with you guys.

1. So yesterday, walking home from church to our house to eat lunch, my companion and I, Hermana Feliz were just casually walking up our hill when this bolo (drunk) comes running up behind us. Casually of course, we just start walking really fast, but then this bolo starts sprinting towards us! And Hna Feliz, seeing this, just yells run! So I look back and then start taking off, sprinting up this freaking steep hill running away from this stupid bolo. I was dying, so out of shape, but at the same time laughing so hard jajaja only in Guatemala!

2. Well, because I am in Guatemala, I got attacked by yet another dog this week. Yup! We went to go and contact this reference and her dog comes shooting out of the house barking at us! I had my umbrella and started defending myself with it, and this dumb dog just kept biting it and kept coming back, all while the owner just stared.. stupid dogs!

3. Last night, we were walking back from an appointment with some members that we are helping through some problems that we are having. The hermano was nice enough to walk us home, but as we were walking, we passed these 3 young guys talking on the street, and as we pass them they just yell to the hermano, "las cuida porfa!" or "take care of them please!" jajaja it was pretty funny.

NURSE: so this week was my first full week as the nurse, and of course I had some interesting experiences with some of these missionaries, mostly elderes I might add!

1. I had some elder call me complaing that he was cold.. umm what? well then put a sweatshirt on! jajaja I was like dang, do you really need to call me for that!?

2. i dont know what is happening in this mission, if like some missionaries just dont know how to walk or what, but i got at least 2 calls this week with missionaries calling and hurting there tailbones.... SABER!

3. An elder called me, he had been carrying a huge sack of flour probably like more then 20 pounds. He obviously didnt lift or carry it with his legs, cause as he went to put the sack of flour down his back stayed bent backward... he was walking like he was pregnant and was in a lot of pain! That would be why you lift with your legs! Up and not backward!

4. I am supposed to authroize all medication and doctors visits through Hermana Smtih, but of course some missionary did it without either and was taking medication prescribed by some random doctor ahhhhhh no! You cant do that!

5. And elder also called me telling me that he had a fever of 188ºF, I couldnt help but laugh and tell him that if that was actually his temperature he would be dead. I then told him to take it again, telling him how to do it and he got back to me saying that it was 96.7ºF.. oh elders....

La familia Pascual Perez
So, this if a family that we found a while ago but that we were finally able to sit down with and talk about the gospel! And it was a good lesson, we taugh basically the entire restoration cause the hermano just kept wanting to know more! 

He had a ton of questions and was just really confused, really confused as to why there are so many churches and where he should go with his family! It was perfect!

We were able to answer a lot of his questions, but he would basically answer them for himself and then confuse himself again by something that he would recite from the bible. But it was a good lesson and in the end we told him that the only way to truly know was to pray, and he was really willingly to do it. We have another appointment with him this week and I am excited to go back and keep teaching him and his family.

Walter is someone that I contacted on the street when I was still with Hermana Tolman. Sunday litterally all of our appointments fell through and I thought about him and that we should go by and see him.

When we knocked on his door he was super excited to see us and hear what we had to share. He had been taught by missionaries before near the Mexican border, and like what they shared. We had gone in only planning of getting to know him and giving a brief introduction of the Restoration, but we ended up teaching almost the entire thing! 

He just wanted to know more! And wanted to know about Joseph Smith, which is what he remembered from the other missionaries that taught him. But he easily and quickly accepted the message of the Restoration, and was talking about how it all made sense to him. He understood the role and importance of Jospeh Smith as he himself is really confused as to why there are so many churches teaching the gospel in so many different ways. 

At the end of the lesson we asked him if he had any questions, to which he responded, "when are you coming back to teach me? jajaja it was so cool! We left him a pamphlet of the Restoration and a Book of Mormon and he said that he was going to start reading it as soon as we left! 

He seemed so positive and so I am super excited to continue to teach him this week!

I love you all so much and constantly pray for each and everyone of you! Thank you for all of your love and support!

Los quiero!

Hermana Loo

Preaching in the POURING RAIN!
With my companion, Hermana Feliz and two members, Cristian and Esmeralda. 

Helping some lady clean out the dirt and shovel out the water
that was outside of her house so that it didnt enter.
Guatemala´s drainage system sucks,
actually it doesnt really even exist! all the water just piles up in one place! 

Hermana Feliz!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Believing and Serving

So, of course, some little random things happend this weke that I thought you would all enjoy.

1. If you guys remember, Titi was helping one of her friends make the decision to be baptized and she was the one who challenged her to a baptismal date. Well, this friend of Titi´s got bapitzed on Saturday! It was so exciting for me to hear and I thought that I would share it with all of you as well!

2. I had a member here tell me that I look like Katy Perry jajaja and I couldnt help but just start busting up laughing jajaja cause I am almost 100% sure that I look nothing like her jaja it was really funny though.

3. An investigator of ours this week told me that when she first met me she though that I was Italian, or that I was from Europe or something jajajaja and then when she found out that I was from the states she thought that I had some kind of Italian roots or something jajaja. And yesterday at church, one of the Young Women told me that she just realized that I wasnt Latina when she heard me talking in english to my comp jajaj to funny..

Lord, I Believe
In my last letter, I talked about one of our investigators Carlos, and how he was more interested in trying to find proof then exercising his faith and asking God. Well, we got a call from a recent convert this week who is friends with Carlos, and apparently Carlos had shown him a video explaining how the Book of Mormon contardicts the bible, and how now he had a lot of questions.

At first, I was really irritated and angry at Carlos for trying to destroy someone elses faith. But then as we were prepraing to go and teach this new convert and try to help him with his doubts. I realized that there is such an important lesson in all of this!

When we have questions, when doubts arise, where do we look for answers? Are we searching in the right places? Do we look for signs? Do we let our doubts chip away at our faith? Or do we search the scriptures? Ask for sincere help from the Lord?

There are so many people now days that just attack the chuirch. Attack its standards and look to attack its members. As the Lord is pushing His work forward, so is Satan preparing his army to fight against us.. Which is why it is so important for us to remember that when doubts and questions arise we are to hold on to what we do know and wait for additional light to come, as Elder Holland taught. And to remember that those who have faith, who earnestly strive to believe, will be those who receive more light and will have signs and miracles shown to them.

I would invite all of you to read the talk, "Lord, I Believe" by Elder Holland, I learned a lot from it this week and it really helped us with the doubts the recent convert had.

Serve or be served?
In the ward here in Olinte, they unexpectedly reorganized the bishopric, after having served for less then a year. And it was because the ward was having problems with the member supporting the bishop, they just didnt want to follow him.

The stake president gave a really great talk where he just kind of macheted everyone, but I also learned a lot. 

When we raise our hands to sustain the prophet, bishopric or any other leader we are promising to follow and support them. To trust that they are called of God and what they ask of us is what the Lord wants us to do.

That we should always remember that this church is a church of service. There are many times when we think that we have or deserve more privilege/rights then we have obligation. But it is exactly the opposite. We cannot expect or compalin when people dont visit us or greet us the way that we want them to when we are unwilling to do the same. We come and assist this church to serve and not be served. The Savior of the world did this Himself, so how can we expect to do anything different?

Then the stake president said something really interesting, he said that anyone who is not willing to take up his cross and follow Christ is not HIs disciple!

It was a really powerful talk and made me think a lot about the service that I provide. If I am serving or waiting to be served. And if I am doing the right kind of service witht the right kind of mindset.

This week was just another one of those weeks that me me reflect a lot. Reflect about the person that I am and the person that I want to become.

I love you all so much and am so thankful for all that you have always all seen the best in me and have always helped and pushed me to be the best person that I can become!

Have a great week! Los quiero mucho!

Hermana Loo

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Using your time wisely!

Well, I dont feel like much happened this week. But I will say that I did learn some very important lessons, which I was so grateful for. I am so thankful for the opportunity that I have each week to grow, learn and to strengthen my testimony. I dont think that a single week should pass by where we are not progressing, so, although not a lot happened this week. I was grateful for the things that I was able to learn. 

Holy Spirit! Gotta have it!
So, this week one of the things that I learnt, was about the importance of having the Spirit in our lives, having it be a part of everything that we do.

I was able to see this in two lessons that we had Saturday. I have been telling you guys a lot about the new people that we are finding and teaching, right? One of them, Carlos who was a reference from a member in my last area, Las Americas, And the other lesson with Paolo and Jose Lima. 

Well, it was quite intersting our lesson with Carlos, because he just wanted to fight with us a little bit. He wanted a reason for everything, wanted to know the why, wanted to have proof or evidence that everything we were saying was true. It was a little sad to be honest, because all of the questions he had were not of great importance in knowing if our message was true. And we just kept telling him that he needed to read the Book of Mormon and ask God if it was true, to tell and ask God to help him receive the answers to all of the questions and doubts that he had. But he just did not want to do it. He did not have enough faith to ask and know that he would receive an answer. Which was just really sad for my companion and I. The Sprit wasnt really in the lesson at all beccause he was just trying to fight everything we were saying. We even had a recent convert with us who kept bearing his testimony about the truthfullness of the gospel and how he came to know it was true. And throughout the entire time he was bearing his testimony the spirit was so strong. Unfortunately, Carlos didnt want to hear about the importance of prayer and scripture study, he just wanted proof and signs. We continue to pray for him in hopes that he will soften his heart and be humble enough to pray and ask God.

And then, on the other hand, in the lesson that we had with Paolo and Carlos, it was completely different. I could feel the spirit leading and guiding our lesson. I could look into their eyes and the way that they were acting and responding and see the spirit working through them. It was such a special lesson, and I could see how these two guys truly have the desire to draw closer to God and to feel His love and spirit more abundantly in their lives. As we were leaving the lesson, the recent convert that was with us, Damian, just randomly said, those two are getting baptized. I know it! It was so great, and I was able to understand how truly important the Spirit is in everything that we do. 

As I was testifying to these two guys in the lesson, I realized that the spirit was speaking and not me, and as I was teaching them, the spirit was teaching me. Was answering my prayers and helping me to understand the divinity that I have as a daughter of God. That God truly is my loving Heavenly Father and that He NEVER leaves me. 

Spending or Investing time?
So, on Thursday Hermana Tolman and I had companionship study with President and Hermana Smith. We were going to have a nurse reunion this day anyway so President Smith thought that we could just do companionship study before hand, it was kind of weird and out of the blue that they wanted to have this with us, but I was so grateful for it in the end. Even if before the study I was so nervous, because President Smith kind of scares me jajaja but it was fine.

I learnt a lot from what he shared with us. And thought that I would share it with you.

He told us this at the beginning of our companionship study he said that "we should never confuse activites with results." he then shared with us a quote/question that President Eyring posed  "Are you spending your time or investing it?"

This question really made me think and ponder. What is the difference between spending our time or investing it? 

When we invest our time we learn, we change. When we are just spending our time we are just waiting for the time or days to pass. If I am truly invested in the time that the Lord has given me to be a missionary, then I am making it worthwhile. Then I am changing, If I am truly investing my time as a missionary, I am not only converting others to the gospel but I am converting myself. Then I am changing my nature and learning to be a true disciple of Jesus Christ, learning to live up to the diving potential that I have as a daughter of God.

Then, of course, it made me think in an eternal perspective. Made me think of the bigger picture. If we are spending or investing our time here on Earth. We all know that the time we have on this earth is a time for us to prepare. to BETTER ourselves. So, are we doing this? Are we using everyday to the fullest? Learning and growing each and everyday? Are we seeking to glorify God before seeking for the things of the world? Are we investing our time in the things that truly matter in this world? Are we preparing ourselves to be able to enter into the Celesital Kingdom? There are so many more questions that can be asked. So many things that we can learn from this simple, yet powerful question. And I have been pondering and thinking about this question all throughout the week. And invite each of you to do the same, and if there are things to change, then DO IT! And I know and promise that we will find so much more happiness and joy in each and every day!

I love you all so much! And am so thankful for the love, support and prayers that you have sent my way!

Hope that you all have a great week! Know that you are always in my prayers!

Los quiero mucho!

Hermana Loo