February 3, 2014
I also thought about naming this email: "The One where I was at an investigator’s house and she asked me if I would be willing to marry a Mexican and then her son called and she made me talk to him on the phone and then he told me he wanted to know me and asked for my phone number and it was the most awkward conversation of my life"; but, I decided that would be just too long. I also thought of naming it: "The One Where B walked up during our lesson with M and said, 'Are ya’ll smoking?’ –to which I replied, 'Yes, B, we are Mormon missionaries and we are sitting with your friend smoking weed; NO we are not smoking!'—to which he replied, 'Why are you talking to the Mormons?', --to which M replied, 'Because I like to learn about God. I read the Bible, you know' –to which B replied ,'You do NOT read the Bible', and then B joined us for our lesson and loved the Plan of Salvation." But, that too, was much too long.
SO I decided to title it about something of much more importance.
This week we got to go to the temple, aka, the greatest part of every transfer! I love the temple and fully intend on coming home from my mission and being a temple worker between my return from my mission and my return to school. Both Hna Hoj and I had family names to bring to the temple, so we had permission to do all ordinances. So, we got there several hours before our session started and we went up to the family ordinance desk to have our name cards printed out and the Temple President walks out and greets us. He asks us where we were from and what mission we were serving in. He then asked if we had brought family names, which we affirmed. He then started to talk with us about the importance of Family History work. It was awesome.
We went down to the baptistery and got changed. We were informed that President Crane was again going to join us. He comes down and speaks to us about ordinances, and I will just leave it by saying he unfolded a few mysteries of the Kingdom of God—at least ones that were mysteries to me. IT WAS FABULOUS. We then received baptism and [other ordinances] for all of our ancestors. Once we had completed those ordinances, we still had a little time before our session began, so we were sitting on the couch talking quietly and reading the scriptures when, once again, President Crane joined us. We talked about our experiences thus far that day and what we had learned. We also talked of missionary work. At the end of the conversation, with tears in his eyes he says: "I am so excited for the people you two teach; you are great." It was such an amazing experience to talk and learn from him and THEN have him compliment us. Man, blessings from the Lord left and right. How grateful I am.
This week was Fast Sunday and we were having a mission-wide fast. Hermana Hoj and I decided that we would send a text to all the members in our area inviting them, as well, to join with us and add the missionary work of our Ward to their fast. We got a reply from 1 sister. Her name is Hermana R. She is a recent convert . . . and it was probably one of the first times she had ever fasted. She asked us what exactly it was she did and that was the end of it. That Sunday, at about 3:30, we got a text saying: "HERMANAS I AM SO HUNGRY!! What was the time that I was supposed to end my fast?" We were SO grateful for the fact that she had ACTUALLY fasted and assured her that the Lord would bless her for the faith she had already demonstrated and that she could break her fast. She replied: "I thought I was supposed to wait until 5? I have already sacrificed this much, I would like to finish it right." I was so touched by that response. We replied and told her that we knew the Lord would bless HER as well as la obra misional in this area for her faith alone. Truly, when we are exactly obedient the Lord blesses us.
"Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man" Ecc 12:13
P.S: I also thought of naming this week’s email: "The One where it REAL LIFE snowed in Texas . . . Brr"; or perhaps, "The One where I realized I was an old missionary because someone told me that before she came on her mission she could do videos on Instagram and I was ASTONISHED."