What a wild and crazy Miracle Transfer Week it has been! My new companion, Sis. Ferrari (from Buenos Aires, Argentina!) is fabulous and we really have been seeing miracle after miracle after miracle! It’s nuts!
On our first day together, we met Georgie, a funny little Indian man who invited us inside and tried to show us how intelligent his children were and how much they knew about the Bible. It was great! We said a nice little prayer with them, and he was so tickled by it that he gave us two pieces of his favorite fruit! We have no idea what he called it, but we have taken to calling it “el chivo” because that’s what it smells like (el chivo means ‘the armpit’)! Yes, our car and apartment had a lovely odor before we realized that the safest place to keep it was probably the back porch.
One day we had only about twenty minutes to knock doors before we had to head out to an exchange. We stopped in the most Latin area we could find, said a faith-filled prayer, and knocked one door. Inside we found Lucia, a younger single mom who had been baptized in the Church in the Dominican Republic when she was fifteen, but had fallen away for a while. She now lives here with her four daughters and has been searching to come back to church and wants to quit smoking! We had absolutely no idea beforehand, but know that God led us right to their doorstep. And her oldest daughter is ten years old and hasn’t been baptized! We are so very blessed and excited to have found them and to begin to work with them.
It’s official. I do door approaches in my sleep in Spanish. Yup.
We also knocked a door and found Estela, a really sweet young mom from Nicaragua who took an interest to our message (we thought). After meeting with her the first time, she told us, “You know, I have a brother who really needs to hear what you have to say.” Absolutely thrilled we replied, “Great! What’s his name?”. Her response was, “Michael Jackson!” Among the Latin population here, it’s pretty common to meet people with names that are not Latin in the slightest. It’s the best. BUT, he has been quite an interesting one to teach! He is one of the the most spiritual 24-year-olds I have met and takes everything we teach him very seriously. He is hesitant to commit to anything to soon, but we have seen some really awesome progress with him since our first meeting. He sent us a text this morning saying, “I have been praying and am pretty sure that God put you two in my life for a reason.” Now that I typed that, it sounds a little creepy, but it really was an answer to prayers! Baby steps. Baby moon-walking steps.
We are still working hard with Jesus and Wilson, helping them progress towards their baptisms. The progress has been a little slower that we hoped and neither of them were able to make it to church on Sunday. BUT an awesome part-member family came to church that we’ve been trying to work with for a long while now! Miracles.
I have had to do some serious relying upon the Lord this past week. Between taking over the area, trying to keep up in Spanish, and our Sisterhood, it has been positively wild. I have been striving to make my prayers more effective, meaningful, and sincere and have seen such a difference. We met an awesome woman named Sasha last night who told us, “One must be desperate in prayer.” I connected with it so much because it’s true. Once we really begin to recognize how fully dependent upon God we are, we begin to recognize how vital a strong and close connection with Him is. I have made it a priority to say a personal verbal prayer daily, which probably doesn’t sound like that big of a goal especially as a missionary. Yet, with a companion at your side every hour of the day, one-on-one time with my Heavenly Father is most often spent inside my head. I have cherished the last few mornings that I’ve taken the time to say a verbal prayer and am already recognizing immediate answers. While studying in True to the Faith I found a gem about prayer: “If you have a difficult task before you, Heavenly Father is pleased when you get on your knees and ask for help and then get on your feet and go to work. He will help you in all your righteous pursuits, but He seldom will do womehting for you that you can do yourself”(pg.121).
How powerful is that! Finding the balance between always seeking spiritual guidance and trusting in God by showing your faith and getting out to work is the constant, joyful struggle of a missionary’s life. And I love it.
I LOVE YOU.
Pray a little better. Work a little harder. Love a whole lot more.