January 19, 2015

New Years in the Jungle

Dearest Family,

Happy New Year!! I hope that all is well as we get started again for another full year. This week was long and had some ups and downs but overall just fine.

We started on Tuesday with our Zone Council. We have this at the end of every month--we report our numbers and talk about them. They were dismal--And we were burned big time by our Zone Leaders. It was slightly comical as one of Leaders told us it wasn`t his responsibility to encourage us or motivate us--that we just need to do better. Oh Elders--it`s okay, we keep moving forward. Didn`t phase Hermana Arone and I as we had a good week in terms of our numbers.
This week we met new investigators and dropped those that don`t want to progress or hear more. We had one lesson with the Bishop, his counselor and this young couple we found through a Less Active member. It was great! Jack asked a ton of questions and commited to start reading the Book of Mormon.
New Years Eve and Day was a trip. There were parties all during the day and night--everyone was drunk. It was quite the sight to see. One of the pictures I sent you is one of a muñeca--or doll. For New Years Eve people make these dolls and fill them with old clothes and things. They then burn them at midnight as a symbol to start the new year. We saw all kinds of them lining up the streets--didn`t get to see them burn though as we were back at our home by 9 like usual.
We had dinner again with the Lage Family. We lit some sparklers, took some photos all while listening to EFY music--it was prime :)
That night was rough as our neighbors across the street through a booming party. The music was so loud and played all night until 8 in the morning the next day. It was ridiculous--no sleep was had for me that night.
New Years day was long and hot--and it ended poorly as I ate something the previous night that did not sit well with my stomach. Got a priesthood blessing and rested all day Friday. Everything is ok now! Back in action :)
Saturday was full with citas (appointments) and Sunday was great. I love attending church each week--after a week full of running back and forth from lessons to service to meetings, it is so nice to have 3 hours to start the week on a new note. We had a great Relief Society lesson on Charity. I love that organization--we got into different groups with about 7 or 8 in each group and shared our experiences that we`ve had with charity. The common theme was that through the gospel we have found the peace and love neccessary to carry on. It was very sweet as we all wept--very sweet spirit. I am finding that each one of us has a different load (like the talk by Elder Bednar 2 conferences ago). My load as a missionary is distinct from the the sisters that sat with me in the Relief Socitey Room. We all have individual loads--and although we can`t fully understand and comprehend the load we carry our Savior Jesus Christ knows and understands. We can help by bringing others closer to the Savior of Jesus Christ, bringing them to his gospel.
Anways that was my thought during that last hour of Relief Society--as you say Mom--power in the sisterhood :)

Well--another week is ahead of me. Love you all. I am doing well, I am healthy, I am sharing the gospel of Christ!

Hermana Jackson

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