Week 4 at the CCM
It has been another full week at the CCM--the time is flying by. We are now considered Avanzados or the Advanced group. In less than two weeks I´ll be headed to Iquitos--it´s starting to get more and more real. Our cute roommates left on Tuesday to head to there missions. Our new roommates are Latina! Whoa is it an adventure--trying to comunicate it fun and it always takes a long time. Esta bien! It will all work it--they are just darling. Hermana Wheelock and I have been asked to be Sister Leaders for the duration of our stay--it was fun welcoming to next set of missionaries in. We have 5 new North Americans and just a slew of Latinas--I think around 14. I have a soft spot for all the sisters--they are so sweet.
Well, last Saturday we went out proselyting again and boy was it an adventure. The Friday night before I was in the moods--I basically told the Lord in my prayer just to get me through the experience as I wasn´t super excited. And I was just tired. The Lord thought otherwise! It was a full day, one of growth and love!! I was assigned to be the Senior Companion as I was paired with a Beginner Sister who is so cute and enthusiastic but her Spanish is just absolutely terrible. When I found out that it was going to be basically up to me I was not thrilled--more like scared out of my wits. But, as I got on my knees I prayed that I would be able to understand the people we would come in contact with, that I would be a good examples to Sister Borque my comp and that it would be a great experience. It was such a wonderful experience. When we got to our assigned area--Las Violetas-we were assigned to a sister in the ward who would show us around Hermana Chessna. She was so sweet. She took us around to the homes we were supposed to visit, less actives, but no one was home. Thankfully since she was a ward member she knew of two sisters who were not on the list. Wow--our first visit was with Melina just out on her porch. She was so kind to us, immediately giving besos and asking how we were doing. When Hermana Chesna asked if we had a message a scripture immediately popped into my mind (Alma 26 37 I think, something about God being mindful of all of his children). The Spirit is amazing that way. We shared the scripture and had her read it. I bore my testimony on how God was aware of us and asked if she would come to church. She wouldn´t commit so we just bore our testimony of God´s love! As we left, Hermana Chesna asked how we knew to share that scriptures--it was exactly what she needed!!
Our next visit was with Solange and her Dad. We were able to go in and sit with them for about 20 minutes. We shared the same message and I bore testimony again along with Hermana Chesna. Hermana Borque was cute, but no one understood exactly what she was saying--it was funny. The dad said he felt peace as we talked--we asked and commited them to come to church. The dad works on Sunday so he said he would try but Solange said she would! It was great.
After we spent the duration of our time street contacting. Hermana Chesna had to leave for a baptism so we were on our own (no worries--there were a lot of other missionaries around our area). We knocked on doors and shared a brief testimony. I wish I could have shared more but with my Spanish we were a little limited--a testimony and smile would have to do! Two good experiences though. There was a group of boys (around 7-8) around Alvin´s age that were playing futbol and walking around. We each gave them a pass along card of the Savior. It was cute to see them carry their cards around even when playing soccer during the time we were there. At the end, we talked a little bit with them--they tried to be funny and ask us questions in English. They asked if I had a family and I was able to show them a picture of you all! It was cute as they crowded their little heads around to see.
As we walked around, their was a security guard who was monitering the neighborhood. I could tell he was watching us as we walked door to door and talked to others. He ended up stopping us--I couldn´t understand everything he was saying but I caught most of it. He said he was very impressed with us and how we acted around others. The way we were nice to the little boys and how it seemed that we had a purpose. He was a golden individual! He asked where the church was and when it started. We got his contact information to give to the missionaries and then we gave him a folleto (pamphelet) about the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was so kind! It was so neat and I wish I could have said more but I felt that the Lord was pleased with our efforts. We came that night tired but our hearts were full. I felt that this experience was a push from the Lord. We each have come here to progress and grow and sometimes we get to feel those growing pains. I know I did. But we just grit our teeth and get through it--and it always turns out to be worth it!
Life is good at the CCM. I was able to go to the temple again today which was great. Our teachers continue to whip us into shape as I am learning more and more Spanish and more about the gospel in general. Just yesterday I was studying about Christlike Attributes in Preach my Gospel. I focused on the area of Hope. I love how in Preach my Gospel is says something along the lines of, "as we work through our problems we will receive hope and the strength to continue." I loved the emphasis on work! We need to work if we want the Lords help. The Spirit and grace of the Lord does not work unless we do! There are some days where it´s hard to get up--somedays I have "the moods" and I don´t feel like being around people. However, I know that God is there for me. He is watching over me and when I pray specifically to see His hand in my life and that specific day--I always do. There is hope through the gospel of Jesus Christ. I love alma 58 when the people are about to go to battle--they poured out their souls to God and he spoke peace unto there hearts. He gave the assurance and granted them the hope and strength to press forward. If we ask we will always receive. 2 Nephi 31 20 is also a great verse on pressing forward.
I love and miss you all!! You can do it--I´ll talk to you next week, my last email from the CCM. Oh! And tomorrow I will have been out for a month! One down, 17 more months to go.