Monday, October 27, 2014

Week 65: The Choice Land

I can't believe this place sometimes.  I mean, we still have those moments where some old man at a door tells us we're going to hell or a less-active-turned-Anti-Mormon starts mocking things about the temple and telling us Joseph Smith was an insane person or a lesson with a truly interested contact gets interrupted by his loud spouse who likes to yellingly argue why baptism is supposed to be done in the name of Jesus with no other names of diety mentioned, but really that's all small potatoes compared to the whamo miracles that have been happening. #trulyblessed

The part member family we're teaching, with the less active dad and nonmember mom, came to church yesterday!  Guess what else.  WE HAD FOUR INVESTIGATORS IN CHURCH!  Know why?  Because it was the primary program and can't nobody say no to thirty cute little kids singing songs and saying parts like "I show my parents I love them when I brush my teeth" or "I can be like Jesus by not fighting with my sister."  Sooo many nonmember or less active relatives came yesterday, it was the best thing.  Among them was the C family we're teaching.  We taught them this week, went over the Gospel of Jesus Christ (faith->repentance->baptism->holyghost->enduretotheend) and finally spit out the invitation to be baptized - you're always more reluctant to do it with a more legit investigator, because you're so scared of them saying no.  But it was more like a maybe.  She knows she needs to change something, for her family's sake.  And that God can only work with us when we try to do as He says.  She shows a tremendous amount of faith for someone who wasn't raised in a real religious home.  I'm so stoked for this family.  #eternalize

I met a member of the ward who's Filipino!  Super heavy accent.  Goods delicous food (chocolate mousse pie with almonds gahhhh).  Courageously and admirably shares his beliefs on Pacebook.  And was just tickled to find out I share his nationality.  I told him my grandma served a mission in the Philipines and that she was from there, and he said "Oh!  So you are hap Pilipina??"  And I smiled and said, "O'po."  I knew he'd get a kick out of that.  #ricelife

We visited a less active last night, who we'll call Edna Mode because she looks like the Incredibles character to a T and has just as much feist.  She told us how uncomfortable incidents with other members made her not want to go to church anymore, and then the elders that came into the area were immature so she didn't want them at her house either, and then something said in a talk weirded her out.  But despite all that, when we showed up years and years later, she says she knows God's working on her.  She loved hearing the Restoration again after all these years, and got chills when we shared the First Vision.  In her prayer, she asked God to help her get back into church.  Amazing how it really is all just about timing.  This happens to be the right time for her.  And we happened to just be here.  #theLordstimingisperfect

In other news, we've started jogging in the morning (thing I hate most) and I've lost three pounds of extra-dessert-weight.  A less active that only calls us when he's got food had us over last night and I slurped a raw oyster out the shell.  My N'Orleans accent is getting better (thanks to Edna Mode who's accent is A+).  I stepped in an ant hill and got five bites.  A member of the ward likes to do this thing where he holds his hands out in front of you and reads your aura and tells you what you need to do to cross paths with your future husband and how it's going to happen and where and what he'll look like.  Sister Schulthies is now planning on taking public transit when she gets home and will be on the lookout for a 5'7 man with a scar on his face. #dullmomentnever

From my study this morning:

42 And when thou hast done this thou shalt go at the head of them down into the valley which is northward. And there will I meet thee, and I will go before thee into a land which is choice above all the lands of the earth.

43 And there will I bless thee and thy seed, and raise up unto me... a great nation. And there shall be none greater than the nation which I will raise up unto me of thy seed, upon all the face of the earth. And thus I will do unto thee because this long time ye have cried unto me. [Ether 1]

So basically, this verse is about Slidell.  And me.  And how I had no idea what I was doing coming on a mission I just knew I had to get to the MTC (the valley which is northward) and there He met me and went before me, and led me through some trying areas until I was finally able to land in Slidell, Louisiana.  A land which is choice above all the lands of the earth.  Or at least, at a point where there's a lot of work for me to do and exciting things about to happen.  I mean, I guess it was because of this long time I have cried unto the Lord.  Just goes to show.  He does hear.  He does deliver.  Just be patient.
Love you lots!

Sister Valdez

1. Free haircuts from a member
2. The elders sent this pre-mi in training from the ward to come knock on our door and invite us to hear a message
3. oyster time

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