Hey all! To start off my week, I ate worms with my companion. Great huh?:D
If any of you said "yes!" please leave. So, let's get down to business.
24 of Feb: This would be where we eat worms! Everything was going well, and we were enjoying a package of snacks, when my companion started dumping the entire package out on the table. I thought she was a little confused, until I saw what happened to be crawling all over the crackers... yep, little worms. More than a little terrifying. However, after calling Hermana Ayre and being assured that
A. We would not die and
B. We would not have little worms growing inside of us
we got back to work.
We met with the Bertoia family, less actives, and had the opportunity to teach the brother:) He had a lot of questions and seemed quite interested. After the lesson we ran back home to pack up our stuff to head over to Belgrano, about an hour away. We ended up staying the night with the Belgrano sisters, as we had a conference the next morning in San Fernando.
The Mission Home
25 of Feb: We had the conference with Brother Zeballos of the 70! It was an amazing experience. I learned a lot from both him and his wife, and the spirit was very strong. One story Brother Zeballos shared really stood out to me. It was about climbing a hill with his son. The son had seen the hill and had wanted to climb to the top. One morning the father had agreed. After a lot of hard work and sweat they reached the top, only to see another hill, even taller and with an even better view. The little boy instantly set his sights on the next hill, one they had not been able to see from the ground view. Brother Zeballos went on to explain that often in life we are given trials or obstacles that allow us to grow and have the strength to face higher tasks. However, we often cannot see the higher mount from the ground view. Also, if they had seen the higher hill at the start they might have claimed that it was too hard, that they couldn't do it. It is the same in our lives. If we saw the heights the Lord had in mind for us from the start many of us would give up before we began. We would complain. We would say it was too hard. How well the Lord knows us, to place a small hill in front of us, giving us just enough strength and faith to make it to the top, and then, and only then, showing us the next hill, the next mountain to climb. God takes it step by step with us. The story really stood out to me.
Hermana Weitl in Caballito
That night we taught Emanuel. He told us he knew the Book of Mormon was true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, but that he still had his doubt that there could only be one true church. We have been praying, fasting, and doing everything we can to help Emanuel see what we can see, but we know that this will be done in God's timing. What I do know is that my companion and I have developed a lot of love for Emanuel and want the best for him. I can picture him as a member of the church, married to his wife for time and all eternity. And it hurts to have this kind of love, this kind of vision for someone who doesn't quite get it all yet. But we will continue to pray. This is Father's work, and He will work to bring to pass his designs.
Emanuel and his wonderful wife
26 of Feb: Macarena accompanied us again! We were able to talk with Carmen again and teach her the Restoration. The spirit was strong as we shared Joseph's experience in his own words. Whether in English or Spanish the words are powerful. We also had an FHE, or family home evening, with the Bertoia family:) The pizza was great, but being able to share the Book of Mormon with one of the members of the family who was not a member of the church was even sweeter.
Lots of yummy pizza in Argentina!
My companion meets a furry friend
27 of Feb: We got to watch the Restoration video with Emanuel:) We had actually gone over with the intent of only talking to his wife, as he had told us he wasn't going to be able to make it. However, when we showed up in front of his door he opened it, practicing his English with us until his wife showed up and we all went inside. As we watched the video the spirit was extremely strong. Emanuel could feel it, and as we invited him to be baptized not the 1, but the 7, he accepted. I have a lot of faith for this investigator and cannot wait to see his family united in the church.
Had the opportunity to visit my companion's old area of Nunez today
Found Wal-mart in Argentina for the 1st time. However, it does not have American things inside.
Even found Tarzan :)!
29 of Feb: Yet another wonderful lesson with Emanuel. This time Khristian Vargas, our old mission leader, accompanied us. He bore powerful testimony and was really able to relate to Emanuel and his doubts. All of us ended up saying a kneeling prayer together. Emanuel didn't pray out loud, but for 10 to 15 minutes he prayed silently, asking to know if this was the true church. The rest of us, I'm sure, were praying for him, that he would receive an answer. Khristian had told emanuel prior to starting the prayer that he needed to ask God a specific question, as that was the way to receive a specific answer. After the 15 or so minutes had ended we all got back into our seats. Emanuel said he hadn't received any big answer, but that he did feel as though he needed to started offering more prayers of such a quality. He said he always said his prayers, but that many times it was offered in bed, laying down. He said at times he'd fall asleep before getting through the entire prayer. I understand what he meant, as I've lived the same thing. It wasn't until the mission that I really understood the importance of kneeling prayers and just how powerful they can be. Now I look forward to bedtime, when I can get down on my knees and literally converse with my Heavenly Father.
It's funny the little things that one learns in the mission. The importance of reading the scriptures daily, of truly studying them. Of saying kneeling prayers and taking the time to talk to God. The importance of the family, of all the blessings one has enjoyed during their life. And so many more things. This is God's work. It is not easy, and it is perfect. I know that it is true.