*we went and played soccer as a zone today! we all left very sweaty and very sunburnt, but we sure did have a good time. I got to chat with the hermanas who are in El Tule now (my favorite old area) and they say that just about everyone they talk to or contact remembers the skinny white girl who used to walk around talking to everyone. So fun to walk down memory lane with them and talk about our favorite places and people of El Tule. I love the mission. It's a love that just keeps giving.
This last week I got a very happy surprise phone call from my convert Nubia from Etla. She had very happy news. Her first happy news is that she will be going through the temple for the very first time this month and the second happy news was that her little daughter was going to be baptized the next day and I HAD to be there.
We reorganized our schedule a bit and were ready to go. When the time came to take a taxi to the baptism we received the news that all of the city of Oaxaca was blocked up. Oaxaca is famous for its marches, demonstrations, and blocking the main roads with the buses to make a point, or to try and get a pay raise.
So basically the whole city was craziness because all the main roads to get anyone anywhere were blocked off by giant groups of parked buses. I was so bummed. We called Nubia to tell her that we wouldn't be able to make it but she was not taking no for an answer. She explained how to WALK there. So we did. We walked for an hour down a giant Mexican highway among masses and masses of other tired and sunburnt Mexicans who were forced to walk their way home. It felt like the end of the world a little bit. Random people walking down a random highway like a giant parade.
We finally got to the end of the highway and found some taxis that could get us to Etla. We showed up VERY tired, VERY sweaty, and VERY happy. It was a beautiful baptismal service. The opening hymn was "I Stand All Amazed". As we sang, I realized the last time I was in that room of that church it was for Nubia's baptism which happened almost exactly a year ago. It hit me in that moment how much has changed in this last year. It hit me how much I have changed, or really, how much CHRIST has changed me.
I really do stand all amazed. Amazed at the change. This last year has been full of tears, laughter, disappointment, success, doubts, and faith. It has been amazing. Truly and wonderfully amazing. A tear ran down my face as I sang at the top of my lungs, "OH IT IS WONDERFUL, WONDERFUL TO ME." Isn't it though? Wonderful. Amazing.
Oh and there were tostadas and cake at the end. It was all very Mexican and very darling. Nubia bore her testimony. It was powerful. I feel so blessed to have gotten to meet her. She is NOT my convert. She is God's. One hundred and ten percent HIS. I just got to be there to make sure all the lessons were taught & understood, the paperwork signed, and the white clothes ready to go. She is amazing. She is my hero.
Oh and if you want to read more about how WONDERFUL the gospel is, you should definitely read this talk: Is It Still Wonderful to You?
Just ask yourself, Is it still wonderful to you?