Editor’s note :I’m running a week behind on posting–sorry for the delay! Life caught up to me last week 🙂 Eliza is well and happy! Katie This letter was sent on 11/10/14
Another surprising transfer call last night – I’m staying in Killian and getting a new companion tomorrow – AGAIN! What in the world. It is fun to see how much I can learn from serving with so many different people.
This week we met an amazing man named John Thomas Cobo. His wife was killed in a car accident two years ago, to the day, and he has spent every day since then just living. Basically, I spent 45 minutes of my life learning some pretty wild life lessons that include: faith is NOT seeing a chair and believing that it will hold you up when you sit in it, but actually stepping outside and breathing, just knowing that there will be a correct equilibrium of gases permitting you to do so; being meek means to ‘tame our wild stallions’, which equates to our pride and our ego; and that if I knew as much as he did about water, my mind would literally be blown (his words, not mine). Also, that today is the best day of your life, not yesterday because you can’t change it and not tomorrow because you don’t know if you will live to make it there, but today. And he gave us $40 to pay for our lunch “because [he] can afford it” (again, not my words). After desperately trying to return it, he just closed the door in our faces, smiling the whole time. Cool guy. The police officer, his across-the-street neighbor, we talked to spent ten whole minutes telling us how creepy he is and how we shouldn’t knock his door. We neglected to tell him that we already had and proceeded to hear some funny stories about Elders he had met in the past who were pushed off of their bikes. Fun neighborhood. We’ve been back several times since then, but not day has matched the first. We did see a cool homemade swamp-hunting, deer-destroying machine though and talked to the Cuban owner/builder. Super cool guy, but his Jehovah’s Witness wife wanted to go shopping, so we couldn’t pray with him. I still like them anyway.
Unfortunately, the three really solid ‘gators we had committed to church didn’t show up yesterday, but we were surprised by four others arriving in their places – cool! And a less-active YSA that we’ve been working with (don’t tell the YSA sisters) came too! It was pretty amazing how happy we were to see him.
Over the course of the week, Sister Heacock and I happened to acquire $100 for food through strange and mysterious circumstances. Generous members who teach with us and slide Jacksons into our hands when we aren’t looking are a thing now. As well as people that you have never met or seen before visiting from Salt Lake City sliding a Jackson on the counter to pay for a meal before you can even grab your wallet or say ‘thank you’ also are a thing. As well as John Thomas Cobo. We certainly had the windows of heaven opened this week! So we treated our district to Panda Express and a Pizza/Doughnut party today. I am so very sad because I am not only losing my companion, but also my two (probably) favorite elders, my district leader and one of my zone leaders, tomorrow – sad day! But I’ll probably be at every transfer meeting at this rate, so I’ll hopefully still see them before they die (mission lingo for ‘go home’). Transfers are absolutely wild. You spend two whole weeks freaking out for a short five minute phone call that determines the next six weeks of your life. Crazy.
I’ve been reading in the book of Mosiah (1-9) this week, which I have absolutely loved! Kings Benjamin and Limhi really were amazing examples of service, love, and leading through example (sorry for saying “example” twice in this sentence). They have really helped me understand how important it is to labor among the children of men especially diligently during this time in my life, but also throughout my life as well. This is the best way to avoid contention and sadness – serve, love, and keep the commandments. The way to happiness is so simple and pure! It’s just getting it through our gators’ heads that’s the hard part. I have also received a lot of inspiration and motivation from our new transfer vision scripture: Moroni 9:6 And now, my beloved son, notwithstanding their hardness, let us labor diligently; for if we should cease to labor, we should be brought under condemnation; for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God.
I’m trying to make my tabernacle of clay labor as hard as it possibly can. It’s been really fun and rewarding to come home absolutely exhausted.
We got to teach the laurels and priests this Sunday – so fun! I got to whip out my “drawing skills” (not real) and told them an awesome story about being spiritually self-reliant.
I love you people! You are the best! Keep writing – the letters bring SO MUCH HAPPINESS!