Monday, March 4, 2013

God Remembers Still

Dear Family,
Can I just say how much I love my family? I especially love you when I get to read your emails. Mom, dad, Hope and the only ones who still write me. Thank you for your sincere support. Know that you make one sister missionary`s Monday every single week. 
Life can be so rough sometimes, huh? Sometimes it seems like there are so many awful things happening, not just little catastrophes at home (7-year-olds who break van windows) but huge problems in the world at large (such as the fact that 85% of 16-year-old girls in Paraguay are pregnant or already have a baby, no exaggeration). But then, there are other times, when I see that life is really so beautiful. I just love the world. I was running this morning right after sunrise and it was actually cool for once, and I just felt so alive. It is a great time to be on earth. The gap between good and evil is widening. God has restored His truth to the earth and it`s flooding every nation slowly but, oh, so surely. I have never been so thankful to be a part of God`s work. Some days I am just so content to be a missionary that I don`t want the day to end. I don`t want the end of my mission to get closer. 

And that`s saying something considering how things have been going. We had some great lessons this week and worked very, very hard. Didn`t waste one minute of time and had tons of lessons with members present. On Saturday we visited everyone with a member to help them go to church on Sunday. And out of about 10 who committed to go to one came. We passed by for three on Sunday morning to walk with them, and to no avail. It`s amazing how many people get sick between Saturday night and Sunday morning. Every class at church was so good and the testimony meeting was full of pure testimonies that would have been perfect for our investigators to hear. Que serà, serà. 
But even if no investigator is progressing at the moment, I still am. I`ve been thinking a lot the past couple days about how obedience makes us free. Like what you said mom about the sister who bore her testimony yesterday of all the many things we CAN do when we follow the gospel.  I have such a strong, strong testimony of that truth. I feel truly concerned for those who view commandments as restricting. Take Sofia for instance. She is 18 with an 11 month old baby, and the father of her baby recently died in a moto accident. She is now living with her alcoholic parents who sometimes kick her out of the house at night simply because they`re out of control, leaving her to take her baby and find a place to sleep. She desperately wants to change her life and get away from her parents, but it`s hard to find work with a baby to take care of (and to think that obedience to the word of wisdom and law of chastity would almost eliminate her heart ache).  She was actually living in the next town over, Laurelty, and listening to the sister missionaries there, but moved here about three weeks ago. Two days after she moved into our area I randomly clapped her house not knowing who lived there, and she came out and told us that she had been taking the lessons from the sisters in Laurelty, and that us showing up without knowing she was there really testified to her that God is aware of her. Anyway, she is so stuck. Stuck but with dreams of a better life and upfront honesty about her past, which allows us to help her. So she`s not really stuck because she`s learning about the gospel which is the ultimate liberator.  But the most beautiful thing about the gospel is that even when we are completely stuck or weighed down by sin, we can always, always, always choose to become unstuck through repentance.  I can give example after example of people who are in really desperate, tight situations and are everything but free. Not to say that if we are obedient we will never have a crisis or dilemma, but I do believe that if we are obedient we will always have the power and means to overcome our problems and learn from them, and use them for our good. I know with all my heart that the only pathway to happiness in this life and the next is obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. There is no. other. way.

I really love Hna. Fracois. She and I have been having such great conversations that I haven`t had time to write in my journal at night or do anything productive. It`s kind of nice being able to talk in English again to my comp. This is the first time I`ve known more spanish than my companion, and it is funny sometimes to both of us and our investigators. The difference between oveja (sheep) and arveja (peas)  or salvo (saved) and salvado (salty) for instance is small, but the meaning can be significant. We are the peas of God, and we can be salty. We are getting along great and she is going to be a powerful missionary.  Mom, her NGO is called Models of the Century, I don`t know yet how I`m going to fit my goat project into that. 

These kids are a LOT cuter than they appear in this picture. They`re my faves. Aaaaaakkkkk they are so precious. I just love them to death, and love it when they yell HERMANAS at the top of their lungs. 
One more success story is that we visited a menos activo young man named Pablo Correa who is waiting for his mission call. We have had such powerful visits with him that he is now excited for his mission and went to church yesterday. He`s so great. 

I love you, family, so much. I hope you are all able to feel the Spirit this week and remember the many blessings we have being so rich in the gospel. 
Your Sister Missionary,
Hermana Goimarac (The first)

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