Wednesday, July 30, 2014

My Mexican Life


I have been reading lately, in my studies, a lot about specific prayers.  And I invite just about everyone and their dog to say them, so I decided to give it a shot the other day.  We three all knelt down in prayer (as we always do before leaving the house).  

I prayed clearly, specifically, and powerfully that on that very day we would find someone who was prepared to hear and accept our message.  We left feeling animated and hopeful.  Two hours later, as we trudged up un unbelievably steep hill, lost (again) and tired, we were feeling a little less excited than we felt when we set out for the day.  

We ended up on a random dirt road up in the highest hills, and I decided to go into a little store to ask for directions (again).  We asked the girl working there if she knew the street we were looking for and she said no.  Then she looked at us for another second and in Spanish said, "You guys aren't from around here are you?"  We all laughed.  We get that a lot. 

She asked us where we were from and we told her.  Then in perfect English she told us that she was born in the U.S. and she's actually from Minnesota, and is in Oaxaca for three years with her mom working.  WHAT THE. 

On some random dirt road in Oaxaca we run into a teenager from Minnesota.  My life.  So then we started explaining who we are and what we do and why the heck three white girls are wandering around searching for people to teach.  We then sat down and started teaching her.  

She was eating it up - asking questions, making comments, and nodding as we spoke.  "Thats SO cool." she kept saying,  "that just makes so much sense!" she kept exclaiming.  She accepted to be baptized right then and there, and she is super psyched about reading The Book of Mormon. GOLDEN.  She is golden.  

And get this, she was the first person we found after saying that prayer.  Specific prayers my friends. They work.  God really is listening.


Our little friend Marcus, who is 8 years old (recent convert of 1 month), was dying to go out and teach with us, so we told him he could come to an appointment with us the next day at 4:30.  But he got so excited to go be a missionary, he showed up on our front porch at 7 in the morning, in his freshly ironed jeans and a white shirt. 

He brought his bag full of scriptures and was just so excited we couldn't tell him to go home.  We did our studies on the front porch with him, and then we left to go work.  Things started off well, but slowly turned sour. 

For example, when trying to teach one of our investigators about Joseph Smith he told them that Joseph Smith was in fact crucified.  NOT TRUE.  He also told an elderly Catholic lady that we contacted that she shouldn't pray to her idols because it's like praying to Satan.  Oh geez. 

It was an adventure.  An exhausting adventure.  By the end of the day we were all ready for Marcus to go home.  Hope someday he remembers that day fondly.  Haha.  My life.

*our little missionary, waiting for us patiently so he can go out and teach. 
  He is darling. Marcus is the best.


It seems as if every time there are special changes in the mission I am somehow affected by them. Another sister went home for health reasons, so the "powerhouse" (our threesome nickname) got split. So sad.  I love our little trio.  I am now in El Tule with Hermana Crystal - shy red head from Utah.  I'm finishing her training. 

She only has 7 weeks on her mission so she still can't speak or understand much Spanish.  So I work as translator a lot.  And she doesn't remember the area very well.  We wander around in circles for an hour in the blazing hot sun just to realize that the house we're looking for we've passed about 6 times and was where we started in the first place. 

I'm working on taking a deep breath and being patient.  We live in a bright yellow house and get this: THERE IS A SHOWER WITH HOT (ok "hot" is kind of a strong word, its more "warmish") WATER.  I took my first HOT ( well, warm) SHOWER for the first time in SIX MONTHS.  It was glorious. 

AND get this: One of the members in our ward owns a washing machine and we got to use it this morning.  whaaaaaat?  I am in Mexican paradise.  And this area is BEAUTIFUL.  Go google it or something because there are flowers and trees everywhere and the houses are all painted bright colors. It's awesome.  And our house only has a few cockroaches every now again.  WOOT!


My second day in El Tule, we were in church and we walk into the Gospel Principles class, and sit down.  The teacher launches into the lesson and 5 minutes into it someone knocks on the door and tells him he has to come to a meeting.

The teacher then hands me the Gospel Principles manual and says, "You can teach the class right missionary?  Ok thanks. Bye!" and runs out the door.  So there I am in front of 20 or more Mexican adults who are all looking at me to teach an hour long class. 

Thank goodness the topic was something easy: Service.  So I launched right on in.  And what do you know, I then continued to give one of the best lessons I've ever given.  I got every single person in that room participating.  Reading scriptures, making comments, sharing experiences.  We sang a hymn, I shared stories and examples, and everyone was WAY INTO IT!  It was awesome. 

The hour flew by and we all left that room as friends, having learned and grown together.  That's when I realized I've finally gotten the hang of Spanish.  It was me teaching that lesson.  It was the Lord.  The spirit was so strong.  IT WAS A MIRACLE.

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