Monday, September 30, 2013

Hulo there :)‏

30 September 2013

Weeellll Hello there family and friends!!

SOOOO just a few updates this week!! We had intercambios [exchanges] and I went to Azuqueca de Hanares with one of the sister training leaders. GUESS WHAT!!!?! Her name is Hermana Ally Frandsen, and she is one of Kiley Bodily’s (and Zachs!) good friends from BYU. We were talking about where I was from, etc., and she asked if I knew Kiley. It just went on from there. How fun to talk about Kiley and the Bodily family! It was like a little piece of home. I sure do love intercambios though, we spend 24 hours with another companion and learn different ways to work and interact and teach lessons. Hermana Frandsen taught me so much. She goes home in two weeks now, and so I wished I could just sit there and SOAK in all of her knowledge. I haven’t had a companion yet that is really old in the mission like her, so it was fun to experience. I was a bit nervous because I knew she would be going home so soon, and I didn't want to get all home sick thinking about how she gets to see her family soon and I am so far away. But it actually had kind of the opposite effect on me in a way. I loved hearing all of her stories, all of her knowledge, how she had changed, etc. and it makes me want to be so much better. It made me want to work that much harder! I want to be able to look back at my mission and feel like I have done all that I can, and served the Lord to the best of my ability!

She told me a few things that I want to share real fast! I told her about how I want to my mission to change me, but I do not want to come back a completely different person. We talked about how God hasn't called us to here to be anyone else. We can learn from each of the companions we have, and take traits that we like, but we do not need to BE them. BE YOURSELF!! There is also a balance between being a stressball and having faith in the Lord. I tend to be someone that gets stressed out very easily and a bit too serious sometimes, but I have learned a lot here about working hard when we need to work, taking a nice break when it is time to relax, and praying... all the time. And not having faith in the Lord really doesn't matter if we don’t have faith that he can work miracles through US. TRUE faith in the Lord is acting on our faith and expecting miracles. The Lord will always make up for our shortcomings when we do our best.

We have had a week of successful lessons with some really prepared and promising people :) we had two people we are teaching come to church, too!! During Mediodia [midday] we have been getting to know members better and cooking with them and sharing spiritual thoughts. I am constantly amazed by how everyone has a different story, and I love getting to know people, and how the gospel has touched their lives individually, and how the gospel WILL touch the lives of the people we are teaching :)

This work always has it disappointments when people reject our message, like a family that we taught a lesson to that asked us not to return, but the Lord always seems to close some doors and open so many more. Sometimes it still is hard to feel like we are making a difference here because we are a small part of a grand work, but how grateful I am to be a part of it!

We are finally getting to be better friends with the Elders here too! Wade, just some advice when you are helping the sisters get comfortable there, BE THEIR FRIEND PLEASE! We feel so much more comfortable that the Elders talk to us like friends, and we feel comfortable asking them for advice since we are so new at this. They really are such great examples for us or hard work and strong testimonies. We sure have big shoes to fill!

I just wanted to share one more thing that I have decided to start doing. My dearest family, will you please join with me? I have started reading the Book of Mormon again (this is the last time in English! next time, Spanish!) and I am highlighting every time it says CHRIST or any of His another names. And I am trying to mark it up like crazy, writing notes everywhere of how it applies to my life right now, and how I can use the teachings in my life to be better. I do not want to be preachy, but I want you to do it with me :) will you please! I think it would be so cool to share our experiences with each other. I just barely started a couple of days ago, and I just read a bit every day, but it is really cool. I LOVE THE BOOK OF MORMON!!! IT IS INCREDIBLE!!!! I love it. I love it. Never would I have thought that I would think it is so enjoyable and fulfilling to read the Book of Mormon all the time and church magazines. But this is what brings us true happiness :)

I love you all so much! Until next week!

Love, Hermana Mather

Last dinner with the Bocanegra family, my favorite Peruvian meal J with all the missionaries from my first Ward!

Cute little girl from my ward!

With Hermana Ally Frandsen!

Making Ecuadorian empanadas with a member J 

Hermana Frandsen again!

My beautiful companion, Hermana Aagard, outside of our piso!

Just thought you would like to see the lovely picture I received of Wade hanging on my wall, and family pictures and quotes. I love you all so much J!

Our district at the temple!!

 Sisters at the temple!

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