Well, my family and friends, once again another week has absolutely flown by. I'm sure that anyone who has served a mission knows exactly what I'm talking about when I say that each week seems to go by even faster. (My greenie thinks that this was one of the longest weeks of her life, and it was about one of the shortest of mine). For those who don't know, Spanish speaking sisters only have 12 transfers, of 6 weeks each. You do the math. I know that my family has a countdown of exactly how many days there are until I get home and remind me in every e-mail and letter that I get of how little time really does remain. It reminds me of a hymn, "The Time is Far Spent."
The time is far spent; there is little remaining
To publish glad tidings by sea and by land.
Than hasten, ye heralds; go forward proclaiming:
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven's at hand.
Shrink not from your duty, however unpleasant,
But follow the Savior, your pattern and friend,
Our little afflictions, tho painful at present,
Ere long, with the righteous, in glory will end.
What, tho, if the favor of Ahman possessing,
This world's bitter hate you are called to endure?
The angels are waiting to crown you with blessings!
Go forward, be faithful, the promise is sure.
Be fixed in your purpose, for Satan will try you;
The weight of your calling he perfectly knows.
Your path may be thorny, but Jesus is nigh you;
His arm is sufficient, tho demons oppose.
If any of you could see what goes through my mind as I lie down each night, you'd know exactly why that came to my mind. I'm trying really hard not to get trunky on my greenie and talk about home too much... we're going to flip-flop this weekend, meaning that she'll have been out for more time than I've got left, and she just barely started!
Anyway, on to my week! (If you're getting tired of reading these weekly "this is what I did this week" letters, there aren't very many more to go and then we'll be on to other adventures of Sister Good's first days as an RM. That could be exciting)
Monday: It was p-day, but we didn't do very much normal p-day stuff. I packed Sister Jardine's suitcases (I felt bad, because I got her sick and she was really not feeling well) and cleaned the apartment so my new greenie wouldn't come into a messy house. And we went around so Sister Jardine could say goodbye to the people she's come to love.
Tuesday: We went and helped a sister in the English ward with a project we'd told her weeks ago we'd help her with. We were going to do it last week, then were sick in bed. And Sister Jardine knew more about what to do to help her, so she had to go. Then we headed up to Las Cruces where we were went to switch companions. We were there a good hour before the transfer van, so spent the time talking to the few elders who aren't afraid to talk to sisters. We were very outnumbered. Then the transfer van pulled up. As well as a couple of cars, and a truck with FIVE sisters, including my new greenie, Sister Batchkoff. She's from Moreno Valley, CA and is super excited to be here in the mission. She's super bubbly and loves life. And was told by other sisters at the mission office that she's just like me... I can't figure out why, because up until I met her I wasn't near as animated as I am now. And I guess it's a good thing to break my bubble before I go home so I don't have to worry about that. We went grocery shopping that night, and she made a contact while we were standing in line for the tortillas (if you could taste these tortillas, you'd understand why we waited in line instead of buying the regular mission tortillas). Except the lady she tried to contact didn't speak any English, so I took over and led the conversation. At one point, I looked over at Sister B and her mouth was dropped wide open and her eyes couldn't have been any bigger. Good thing she was able to rebuild her confidence that night at the church when I was talking to one member and another started to talk to her.
Wednesday: We went around so Sister B could meet people, and did planning so she could get the hang of things in the area.
Thursday: We had district meeting. We practiced teaching, and I was amazed at Sister B's Spanish--and so were all the Elders. Yup... my greenie definitely showed me up. I wasn't willingly contributing to lessons by just jumping in during my first week--even if it was just a practice! We did service for a sister in the English ward that afternoon, and taught some great lessons.
Friday: We did weekly planning, then taught a few lessons. We were also able to see the Soto family again, but something has changed. The light was gone from Sister Soto's eyes. We have an appointment with them again tomorrow, so we're praying that we'll be able to bring the Spirit back into their home again.
Saturday: We went tracting. It was like 85 degrees and beautiful. We went to the trunk or treat for the English ward that night. I like those. When we got home, our door was open. We kinda freaked out a little. I remembered locking the door. We called Jimmy, a 19 year old less active that we're working with. We just helped him stop smoking. He came over and searched the apartment and gave us the all-clear that it was safe to go in. The door just hadn't gotten shut tight and one of the neighborhood cats must have pushed it open.
Sunday: We had an AMAZING meeting in the Spanish ward! It was all about missionary work. During the combined 3rd hour, they had put together a slideshow with pictures from all the members who have served missions, along with pictures of missionaries who have and are currently serving in the ward. It made me cry, realizing that very soon my mission will be a bunch of memories and pictures. But I'm going to keep working strong! We had dinner at Bishop Zuniga's house. While there, he and Jonathan, a friend who lives with them, pulled out the SWAT vests that they dressed up in for the Halloween dance the ward had. So of course all of us missionaries had to try them on. And Sister B and I became the SWAT sisters: Sisters With A Testimony! Boo-Ya!
So when are they going to be starting work on the house? You really should have seen my face when I read your letters, because just the week before it was really sounding like the addition wasn't going to happen. It really would have been funny to not tell me though and just see my face when I walked into the house here in a few weeks. And they're really expecting to be done with it, or almost done, by the time I get home? That's not very much time!
Things are going great with Sister Batchkoff! We're really working well together. More details in my weekly letter. I am feeling totally confident in my abilities, and I am pretty much over the illness I had last week. Every once in a while I've still got a cough that sneaks up on me, but other than that I'm good. Well, and my back has been bothering me again, but that's nothing new for me. I take IB Profin and I'm fine for the most part. It's starting to feel better too.
I got the packet of stuff to do my fingerprinting, and plan to go get that taken care of right after I leave here today.
The work is going good. We're finding new investigators. We have no baptisms coming up in the near future. R. is really struggling, and I'm really worried. Please put her name in the temple. She was so ready for baptism but was struggling with quitting smoking. She really was doing very good, but she kept getting discouraged and has started ignoring our calls. It breaks my heart, as her baptismal date was for this coming Saturday. We won't give up on her. We had a great companion study this morning for her and ways we can help her. It's just really frustrating. But we're going to do all that we can to help her. Also C. She's the one who turns 18 and was supposed to be baptized on Friday, but she's having lots of problems with her mom and we haven't seen her for 2 weeks. We finally got a hold of her on the phone last night and she said that she's probably moving to San Antonio with her dad after Christmas.
So yeah. That's my week. Guess this e-mail is a little more exciting... and quite a bit longer than some that I've sent. Hope ya'll have a fantastic week!
Live in Thanksgiving Daily
3 years ago