Sent on 8/18/14
So much to tell, but so little time!
Here’s my life:
°We’re leaving the CCM at 2:30, oh wait, TOMORROW MORNING. My flight leaves at 6:05 A.M. to Dallas and then at 10:20 to FORT LAUDERDALE. I got a letter from my president, so there will be people waiting for us when we arrive. There are six herms and four elderes headed to Fort Lauderdale tomorrow. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to call at the airport, but I’ll do my best!
° We had an AWESOME Sacrament Meeting on Sunday – Presidente Elizalde (second counselor) was alone when we were received at the CCM and had our first interviews, and then was alone in the morning of our last Sabbath here. He has a really amazing Spirit, and I have so much love for him. He gave us the whole meeting to bear our testimonies (usually districts only get half), probably because we are the only district to have done it completely in Español. The Spirit was really amazing, and we sang a medley of Himno de la batalla de República and Somos los Soldados (Battle Hymn of the Republic and We are All Enlisted) – it was awesome! Usually everyone sings really sad and emotional hymns, but it felt great to have an arrangement that described our excitement to go to work! He then, from the pulpit, said ‘adios’ to each of us individually and started crying, which in turn made us all cry tambien. There was so much love there.
°Our last lessons this week with Guadalupe and Daniel were GREAT! I know that they aren’t real, but we’ve really learned so much in terms of being more dynamic and teaching with clarity. Hopefully we can actually see some succesful products of those preparatory lessons in the field!
°I’m including a picture of us and our mejor amigo, Javier, from the comedor. We did our service activity with him on our first Monday here and have talked with him during at least one meal every single day since then. He is one of the most fantastic human beings I have ever had the pleasure to know. No matter what he is doing – sweeping floors, cleaning up vomit, washing bathroom walls – he always has a contagious joy and smile. When around him, I couldn’t help but be overjoyed and so ecstatic about this work. Today he gave us two final pieces of advice: don’t fall asleep during your mission as the apostles did during the Atonement – take advantage of every minute -; also, he told us to always remember that our moms are praying for us and to not make their prayers in vain. He’s awesome. He and his wife made us all bracelets, and this is what called for the picture-taking. I love him SO MUCH!
°Both Hno. Camacho and Hno. Candia gave us pretty fantastic parting words during our final lessons with them. I have been so blessed to have them as my teachers during my time here. They have both taught me so much about myself, this Gospel, and what this work is really all about – love. They have changed my perspective and have instilled within me a desire to take advantage of every minute and to be exactly obedient. When I return, I want to be able to say that I followed every rule and that I worked as hard as I could. I want to be there to do everything the Lord needs me to do while there, and if I have to sacrifice a few things for that to happen, then I0m willing to do it. I’M SO EXCITED TO GO.
°This time in the CCM has been life-altering. I have developed so much love for so many people in such a short amount of time. Leaving will be so difficult. Yet, even though leaving will be hard, I know that it’s possible to feel this same love this quickly for the people I will meet in Florida, perhaps even on a grander scale.
This work is truly the work of God. There is no way that this Gospel cannot be true. I have already seen it change so many people, and am so looking forward to helping others understand how much their Heavenly Father loves them and wants them to be happy. I love this Gospel with all my heart, and am so excited to be a servant of the Lord from the minute I wake up to the minute I fall asleep (and I guess even in between).
Last minute field advice?
I know that I don’t know Spanish as well as I think I do, but Hermano Candia told us today that he speaks to us as fast as he would speak to a Latino – and I understood every word! Thank goodness for the Holy Ghost. Our rate of learning has truly been astounding. I’m so excited for the day when I’ll be able to say whatever I need to without having to search for words in my brain or in the dictionary! Spanish is the best! Definitely the most beautiful language on Earth (sorry German – sorry Dad).
Much love to all of you people living normal lives. Shout out to MOLLIE AND LEVI AND THEIR HIJITO. Also a little shout out to Henners for not being the only chico.
Sent on 8/18/14