Monday, September 15, 2014

Sacrifice, Enjoying the Journey, and Transfers!!‏

15 Septiembre 2014

Buenos Dias!!! My mind feels all boggled from the family email and from Amber. I was expecting an email of your mission call in at least two weeks!!!!! AH CONGRATS AMBER!!! How do you feel? Are you excited? When will you go to the temple? WE CAN SPEAK SPANISH TOGETHER SOON!!!! Wow, I did not expect to get this email today, I am so happy for ya sis!!!! You have so many blessings and challenges and adventures awaiting you :) I can't wait to be "companions" with you and do mission prep with you when we are home together! YOU´re goin’ on a mission!

These past few days have been a roller coaster of emotion!! We were at stake conference (afterwards) Saturday night, when we received the news about transfers! I was nervous about leaving this area and especially my companion. Everything felt so comfortable and fairly smooth!!! But that’s pretty much why I was leaning towards the fact that I would be transferred. I am learning more and more that the blessings come in the storms!!! The little storm we were thrown: Hermana Palomino will stay in Santa Cruz and area train, and I caught a flight the next night to Madrid and stayed the night then rode a train to...... Gijòn!!!!! Oh the train ride was BEAUTIFUL, it is so green and mountainous... surroundings that I have missed for so long!!! I feel like we are in the shire from Lord of the Rings, or that we rode a train to Hogwarts. hehe. It feel definitely be a change to work here, I feel like I have started a different mission all over again. Please look up pictures of Gijòn to get an idea of it, I tried to take pictures on the train ride and they all turned out terrible, hehe. I have always secretly dreamed of serving here! It was an adventure to get here, traveling from the very bottom of the mission, to the very tippy tip of the peninsula, but we are here we are here we are here!!!

AMBER ROSE... I can´t believe it... you’re going on a mission!

My new companion is Hermana Carrol from Arizona! She has about 10 months in the mission and I just love her to death, we had met in Madrid on intercambios [companion exchanges] and had a good time. When we were told the news, it was all so bittersweet, lots of goodbyes said and it was hard to think of a chapter in my life closing, BUT NEVERTHELESS I felt a peace. The peaceful feeling always comes and I find myself reflecting a lot, thinking about if I had accomplished what the Lord has asked of me.

As we sat in stake conference I felt so strongly that all of the recent converts we have in the ward will just flourish and do so well! A patriarch was just called for the stake there, and it just gives me chills thinking of all that Luis and Ana have in store for them as they seek to have an enduring conversion the rest of their lives, receiving their patriarchal blessings, etc. If I have learned nothing else on the mission, it is that the mission changes lives (I am a witness of that, they say that the first convert of our mission should be ourselves, and I have felt so many changes in myself along this journey). If I have learned another thing it is that the times in our life of greatest trial and feeling uncomfortable is when the greatest growth comes. And lately, especially this last weekend, I have just felt an outpour of blessings and feeling so in debt with the Lord. I can never get even with Him.


I wanted to share these from the last zone conference with you!...

Being twelve years old is a drag! I hate being a Boy Scout and I hate these long hikes. If only I were like my brother and could go to High School and have a car and drive everywhere instead of walking, then I would be happy.

Man, High School is a drag! Tests every week. Mary likes you, not me. Gas costs so much and Mom and Dad never let me have the car. College would be an easy life. No parents to bug me. Then I would be happy.

Boy, I wish Mom and Dad were here! Mom could fix me a good, hot meal. So much homework. Never have any time. But soon I’ll be going on my mission -- that will be great. And I hope I go to a foreign country so I can go to the MTC and learn a new language. Then I’ll be happy.

If only I had gone to an English speaking mission. Life here in the MTC is really a drag. I can’t pass off the second discussion. Have to cut my hair every two weeks. I got a “Dear John” that everyone seems to think is very funny. Spend three hours in the lunch line and can’t say families correctly. I can’t wait to get into the mission field to be with people and to teach them. Then I will be happy.

Boy, what I’d give to be back in the MTC where at least if I did speak English someone could understand me. Here I sit in Puerta del Sol, in Madrid, Spain and wonder what my girl friend is doing. Wonder what  Mom’s cooking for supper: can’t really wait to get home again, get into life, get married, have some kids, really want some kids and then I’ll be happy and life will be good like I always dreamed.

These kids are a pain! They’re always getting into stuff, business is bad, never have a minute to myself anymore. The kids always need this or that. When I retire and have all day at home with my wife, then I will be happy and life will be good like I always dreamed.

I wish those kids would come home and visit sometimes. The place seems empty with everyone gone. There’s nothing to do. Don’t have the strength and enthusiasm I used to. 

Boy, I wish I was a Boy Scout again. I remember when I was 12 years old and a Boy Scout. Those were the best days of my life.

And a letter President received from a returned elder who served in the Spain Madrid mission:

“I was reflecting yesterday if I would call the mission a sacrifice. And for everything it seems I might have sacrificed, I feel like I have been given tenfold. If I say I have sacrificed time with my family, then I must realize that I have been rewarded with a family more united and loving than ever. If the mission has been a sacrifice of time, I have been rewarded with knowledge that no university in the world could have taught me. If it has been a sacrifice of my talents, I have been rewarded with more than I ever had before. I can speak Spanish, I care more genuinely about people, [and] I am less quick to judge and more anxious to serve. If it has been a sacrifice of human relationships, I have been rewarded with practice in speaking to men and women from all walks of life and in diverse situations. If I have sacrificed my earthly possessions, I have been given new ones that I value infinitely more. For anything I have sacrificed I have been given more.”

This really touched my heart. No wonder we ask members of the true church of Jesus Christ are asked to sacrifice so much. Along the way we are just taught little by little that we really aren’t sacrificing after all, and that is how I have felt this week, thinking about the people I have met, the experiences I have had, things I left behind, but so many things worth so much more that I know and cherish. I can never pay the Lord back for what he has given me :) But we can always live our lives in a way that we thank Him for all that He has done. That is the happiest way to live :)

You may all send letters to this address... I live here now!!!!  Letters are always welcome :) please send some to this lonely mailbox soon!

Hermana Emily Mather
Calle Jove y Hevia
#19 1-D
Gijòn, Asturias

I love you all so much!!! I pray for you and think of you daily :)

Love, em

Marcela!!! The lady we taught the entire 6 months I was there in santa cruz!
I wasn't sure if you had ever seen a picture of her.

And Pablo, I don't even think I have told you much about him.
He is a little miracle, I will have to tell more about him later.
He is progressing so fast and LOVES coming to church and being involved. haha
He wore a white shirt and tie without us even asking him to on Sunday.
Well, he brought the tie because he didn't know how to tie it, we helped him.
After stake conference he said he was just so inspired to be nicer to people
and say hello to them even when they don't give him the time of day.
He says he needs to be better and more friendly and an overall influence on others. Haha
He is a cute 64 year old man!!

Saying goodbye at the airport yesterday to Hermana Palomino and Mary and Paco

and.. suprise!!!! Augustina!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I got to see her in Alcobendas this morning, all the plans just worked out and we ended up having time!
We grabbed a video and everything, we surprised!! hehe
I walked up the stairs, she saw me, and she fell to the floor!!!!
It was the happiest reunion EVER and the greatest surprise for myself and for her :)
Wow, it felt like time had not passed, and I was back with my Dominican grandma :) hehe.
She is doing so well, she is firm and faithful and always going out to help the missionaries with lessons!

This morning, getting ready to board the train after some great reunions with an Elder I have not seen for over a year!!
Wow its so good to run into other missionaries and members and recent converts :) 

My new companion, Hermana Carrol!!!!!!!!!!!! 

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