Bonjour! It's might fine to be here today. I was really happy to hear from so many people I love this week! Last week, I bought a journal,a big one, like the kind I had at home. So this entry could either be really cohesive or really sporadic, based on how I wrote in my journal. which I'm using as a reference.
July 1st: We had a thunder storm!!! Always exciting. We taught a bunch of lessons and took out a new member of our ward. As we walked up to her door to get her, a crack of thunder shattered the silence and her two boys woke up. I watched as she put on some hymns on tape and then went and kneeled with her boys and her husband in prayer to calm them down. It was so precious. I was really able to recognize the humility and the spirit in that home and it melted my heart. Then she came out with us, we taught a lesson to a man (who actually "broke up with us" this morning...) and she promptly went into labor not even two hours after we dropped her back off at her house. Her husband claims he blames us for that, hahaha.
July 2nd: Started out the day by reading "A Consecrated MIssionary" by Tad R. Callister. There's a line in there about an elder who is laying in bed and his companion tells him to get up and he says, "I don't want to" and his companion responds, "it's not about what you want. It's about what the Lord wants." That rebuked me. I talked with my companion about it and we decided that we need to develop better attitudes. More positive attitudes. Then I read a scripture that basically said if I'm lazy on my mission, I'm going to pay for it eternally. So. Yeah. It was a good way to start the week.
July 3rd: I had the realization that I really don't think I'm in this area this transfer for our investigators alone. I think this transferred is supposed to allow me to help my companion, our less actives, and our members, all of which seem to be having a rough time. My patience is being tested, with myself and those we interact with, but the Lord is strengthening me. There are times I know back home I would have offered a biting remark in response, or tried to relieve myself of confrontation by walking out of a room when someone offends me. But as missionaries, we really don't have those options. And it's such a good thing. In my journal I wrote, "I'm learning to uplift and edify when I want to reort and argue. But I know that when we uplift those that we feel destroy us, not only do we save outselves, but we rescue them for their own destruction."
July 4th: Yeah! The 4th of July! It's pretty impossible to do much proselyting on the 4th because no body is home or they're with your families and really don't want a couple sweaty girls knocking on their doors, so we planned accordingly and... didn't teach any lessons. But! We had a really delicious ward breakfast and flag-raising ceremony, which was great to see some new faces, and then we had District Meet, and after that my companion and I did our studies. During companionship study, we talked about 2 Corinthians 13, which was something we both really needed to hear. It says, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in faith. Prove your own selves...but I trust that ye shall know that we are not [failures]." AH! The Lord is here. Always. He never goes away. He never even receeds. If you're not receiving your blessings, examine your faith. And if it's hard for you to be completely faithful and trusting in all things, you're not a failure! Just work to improve. After our studies, we baked brownies for a less active whose dad is in the hospital and brought them to her, then we went to dinner and frozen yogurt with some of the youth. The youth in our ward is amazing. Then we went to the Bishop's house, we were given permission to stay out until 11, and we watched fireworks! Our bishop lives in the MIDDLE OF NO WHERE, so it isn't illegal for him to have fireworks in our very, very droughted city. It was awesome. Then we went home and PASSED OUT. Midnight is late for a missionary.
July 5: My notes were gibberish. I even wrote a formal apology in my study journal for an analogy I tried to make that made no sense because I was so tired. So instead of eating lunch, I took a nap. But before that, I decided to apply this "examining my faith" and I prayed. And I begged the Lord that our lessons wouldn't fall through, and that we could find members who would be willing to come out with us, and that we could see miracles. Then I passed out for an hour and when I woke up, we dashed out the door and we. saw. miracles. All of our lessons were in Spanish, members came with us to them all, and we even had the chance to give a church tour to Froilan, a man who is always telling us "gracias por su paciencia!" It felt so good to be so productive.
And yesterday was Sunday and Sundays are always a good time. Fast Sunday, none the less. I bore my testimony and got teary-eyed as I did it. I bore my testimony on home teaching and visiting teaching. I never thought either of those things were very important before my mission. But if we truly understood the teachings of Jesus Christ, if we truly understood this Gospel, we would know how important retention is. Some people don't come to church because they think nobody notices when they're there.These assignments have nothing to do with statistics, they have everything to do with helping our brothers and sisters in their walks of life. You never know what active member is less-active in heart. It's not some silly little treasure hunt our leaders give us to keep us busy, it is a commandment to help bring forth the work of salvation! Then, after church, we tried four billion people and some less-actives. The less-actives were home, the four billion people were not, but around 5 o'clock, we saw the ice cream truck, who is a potential investigator of ours, and she gave us free ice cream! Because we told her we couldn't buy anything on Sundays. So... Not really sure if that's stretching the letter of the law. But it tasted delicious. Then we realized it was fast Sunday and had to say a big ole prayer to repent and break our fasts. Hahaha.
And that was my week! Lots of fun, lots of good insight. A little bit stressful, what else is new?
I love you all and I hope that you're doing well. I'm missing you all!!
Sister Sara Best
Pictures: 4th brownies!
Missionaries at the Bishop's!
Writing "repent if you want rain" scriptures in public places. ;)