Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Mexico Week 61 -- Tender Mercies

Dear sweet family, 

I love you all too much! I hope that everyone is happy and having faith and learning from all of life´s challenges! 

This week was AWESOME!!  So like I told y’all last week, they sent me to Guadalajara on Tuesday to sign my Visa again. Tuesday night we get there at like 6:45 and I was kind of tired of being on buses.  The next bus to the house in Cruz del Sur takes like an hour and half.  So, I called the Elders and asked if we could just stay the night in Tlaquepaque.  Not going to lie, I was hoping to run into some people!  I knew Hermana Gonzalez was still there!  I got shut down by Elder Guillen, so we got on the next bus to Cruz del Sur.  Totally funny, the minion piñatas that Hermana Buttars and I bought are STILL THERE.   We got to Cruz del Sur and the Hermanas start giving me the update on all of the families! It was so awesome to see how much they have grown!  Maria Dolores is getting ready to enter the temple soon!  I’m hoping to be able to go with her!  I felt the Spirit so strongly and decided to write letters to everyone there. They all made fun of me because I was writing letters all night. Ha! Ha!  It was just such a cool moment!  It was so special to see that everything we do makes a difference. I love those people. 

Then Wednesday morning we go sign our Visas and one of the Elders in the offices asks me, Hermana what airport are you going home to?  I whipped around, “WHAT??!!”  I did not believe they were looking at plane tickets.  The Elder just laughed!  All of the Hermanas got so excited, “Wow!  They are already sending you home!”  I just felt so sad!  Kind of like...whoa, what a second!  It is not time yet!  I have so much left to do!  I don’t like talking about it!  Anyways, there’s a new mission map in the offices that is sweet!  This is me pointing to my three areas!

So we head back to the bus station to go back to Uruapan and there aren’t any more buses until Thursday and it was like 3:00 in the afternoon.  We called the zone leaders and they said they would look into something for us to do until the next bus.  That’s when my heart started beating really fast … WELL, just so happens that Tlaquepaque is like 30 minutes from here.  Like no one can see through that little helpful hint!  Five minutes later he called us back and said to go to Tlaquepaque.  Hermana Gonzalez and Hermana Casanovas will be waiting for us in the church.  We hung up the phone and I started giggling and yelling YES! YES! YES!  The lady in front of us in line started cracking up!!  Literally, the whole time felt like a dream.  This is me in my chapel where my heart will be permanently reside!  Hermana Gonzalez gave me the hugest hug and we almost get teary!  She starts catching me up on everything!  

They changed the boundaries and Hermana Elsa and Hermano Jose aren’t in their area anymore.  I was so bummed!  I kind of wanted to see them and Hermana Gonzalez reading my mind says well hey, let’s invite them to our appointments!  Hermano Jose comes with us. Ahh, just seeing him was so awesome and we go visit Hermana Irma (the investigator that makes piñatas) She and her husband are going to church now and reading the book of Mormon. How cool is that?  Hermano Jose shared a powerful testimony and then we went to see Hermana Ruby. Hermana Casanovas made it a surprise and covered the Hermana’s eyes and then she saw me and just squeals and we hugged for a long time and then we both start crying. She gave me a wallet, the ones that Juan is making while he’s in jail.  As we left, she got all teary again and tells me that I can’t forget about them. We took pictures with the girls and they want to be missionaries.  Hermana Gonzalez and I talked all night!  It was just the BEST DAY EVER!  In the morning, Hermano Jose and Hermana Elsa took us to the bus station. Hermana Gonzalez told me that the first time they went to see Hermana Elsa after I left, she almost didn’t want to receive them and said she wasn’t prepared.  About a week later, she let them come to visit.  Hermana Gonzalez told me that Hermana Elsa was crying a ton because she wasn’t expecting me to leave and that she loves me like her own daughter and she never thought she would love me so much. I got to see her in the morning and she gives me a big hug and ahh, I just love them and the whole trip felt like a dream. 

As a bus left super early on Thursday morning, it was all dark and we saw the whole city and I felt empty ... like a huge hole in my heart and super sad. You know, like the feeling when we leave Disneyland. I got a little misty eyed and just started thinking about when I actually leave this country.  It has all gone by so fast and it’s hard. It’s so hard leaving. I thought about Christ in 3 Nephi when the people start begging him not to leave, and it says that he had compassion on them and stays a little while longer. That’s what I’d like to do!  I made y’all a video talking about all of this, but it’s not uploading. But anyways, it is like I saw all of the fruits of my mission in like 2 days. I could see how everything we do matters.  Nothing is in vain.  It’s all worth it!  It’s so incredible to have relationships so strong, to love people so much and feel like they’re family. Mom, PRETTY PLEASE, we have to come. You have to meet these people. You will love them!  But yeah, it was awesome, so awesome and just a tender mercy of the Lord. 

The rest of the pictures would be me feeling like my arms are going to fall off after being a real woman and washing clothes and cleaning the house with my pizza!

After getting back from Guadalajara we had some pretty cool experiences here in Jardines! Hermano Mike isn’t really listening to us anymore.  He’s just not ready to give up some things.  We finally found his wife after about a week and a half yesterday and we watched the Joseph Smith movie!  She loved it and said the most awesome prayer afterward. She was pleading to know if it was all true and she thanked the Lord for letting her know Joseph Smith better and asked for time to be able to read the Book of Mormon. Her kids are also listening with her!  Woo!  Hoo! 

My companion also hit five months in the mission, so we had a little celebration for her!

We have another investigator named Karla. She is 29 and recovering from breast cancer. She is so tired but she went to church yesterday! She says she knows it’s all true and wants to be baptized.  She has been through so much, but still has so much faith.

Last night we had a pretty special experience with the Camacho family. Their mom has been super worried and stressed lately and her oldest son wants to go and live with his girlfriend. Last night, as a miracle, we found them all together and as we said the opening prayer, I felt impressed to talk about prayer. We start talking about prayer and her oldest son asks a ton of questions and kind of doubts that Heavenly Father listens to us. As we talked he started realizing lots of answers and his whole attitude changed, then he starts asking about eternal marriage and we leave him some homework and an appointment for next Sunday. His mom afterward gave me the biggest hug!  I think we hit just what he needed to hear!  I just love people. I love the opportunity to love them so much and just try to help them and for all of the inspiration the Lord gives us. 

I´m also still stuck on thinking about the pioneers.  Ha! Ha!  I was reading more today and there’s a part where the Lord says that sometimes we have to suffer and pass through trials in order to learn to be humble and obedient. We have to be truly converted. In our ward conference, the stake president talked about that and it’s so true. We have to sacrifice, we have to trust the Lord and follow Him completely. I love Him and I love the gospel. The real world is scary and I can’t believe my mission is already winding down, but I know that I love Him and that together we can figure the rest out. I love y’all!! 

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