Monday, January 6, 2014

A Yellow Happy New Year and Perspective

The Muralla (Wall) de Chuquitanta and some ancient ruins outside of Lima
Last Monday, we went to see some ancient ruins. The lady who did the tour wasn't there, so we weren't allowed to go very close to it. However, it was surrounded by really tall hills, and so we decided to climb them. It was super hard, worse than hiking up to the 'Y' in Provo, but the view was even better. We could see a lot of our mission, the airport, the ocean, and everything. It was beautiful. It reminded me kind of like how we can only see a little part of our lives here on earth, what is surrounding us. But God can see everything, and can give us a new perspective of what our life can be. While down by the ruins, we could only see hills and dirt. But when we got to the top, we could see everything. I guess it all depends on your perspective.
Looking down on the ancient ruins

Looking out across Lima and the ocean
This week was difficult in that every day almost all of our citas fell through and no one was home. However, we prayed for the Spirit to guide us to where we should go and we did a lot of contacting. We are learning how to be more effective in helping people remember their citas and commitments, and we want them to recognize that when they say they'll do something, it's their word that they'll do it.

On Saturday, we had a really good study. We felt the Spirit very strongly and we left the apartment ready to share what we felt. That morning, we met with a less active sister who is very sick and has many challenges in her life and family. We could all feel the Spirit so strongly as we talked of faith and how God is aware of our trials. It was a very uplifting lesson, and yesterday the sacrament was brought to her house. She was grateful for the opportunity she had to renew her covenants.

For New Years Eve, everyone dresses in yellow, burns old
dolls, and they do lots of cool fireworks. Here they are
burning some dolls in the street below our apartment.
Later that day, we had a lesson with Rosa, whom we had been visiting for a while and who has had other missionaries in her home in the past. Our goal was to challenge her to commit to a baptismal date or else we would have to tell her that we could no longer visit her, so we were pretty nervous. We talked with her about obedience, and how God is just waiting to give us so many blessings if only we keep His commandments. We talked about her family and how she can be an example for her son. She accepted a fecha for the 25th, and we brought her with us to church yesterday! We are so excited for her and we know that making this first step to be baptized will give her and her son so many blessings. Now she could use some prayers to help her keep the commitment.

Celebrating New Years Eve dressed in our yellow
shirts and drinking yellow sodas.
Hermana Morales dressed for service.
For a service project this past week, we helped paint the
inside of a home.
Yesterday we had a cita with a niƱa named Natalie. She actally contacted us in the street one day while we were walking, saying that we had given her a pamplet to read about what happens after death but never came to visit her again. Well, last night we went to her house and the mother was sitting outside. She looked at us and told us right away that she was Catholic and didn't want to listen to anything we said, but we could talk to her daughter. We entered the house, and Natalie was so happy that we had come, even though it turns out we had not given her the original pamplet. Her older brother who is a marine was on the computer and barely even acknowledged our presence when we greeted him. Well, we sat down and began to converse with Natalie, and began to talk with her mother as well. We asked about her family, and she called for her husband to come in from the other room. He told us right away that he is Evangelico, and didn't want to change religions. Well, we talked about how our message won't take away from what he knows, it will only increase his faith. We then asked if they could all listen to our message, and the Lord softened all of their hearts so that they listened, even the brother on the computer came. We had the Holy Ghost with us to help us know how to teach this family, and they even said we could come back to teach more. It was a little miracle to me that the Lord is with us and helping to soften the hearts of those we come in contact with.

Standing on the Wall above the ruins.
Lastly, my new companion, Hermana Morales, could also use some love and prayers sent her way. She just found out that her grandmother passed away. She has been such a big boost of energy to my missionary spirit, and we have been doing so well. I hope she will be OK.

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