Monday, August 11, 2014
August 11, 2014....Week one in the field
August 11, 2014
Hellooooo! It was so great to hear about this week´s adventures for everyone. Sounds like Girl´s Camp was a hit, I´m glad to hear that! I loved going to Heber Valley back in the day. Super exciting to hear about the tennis team with Mia! Congrats, dude! You´re gonna kill it. Tell Janaye congrats too, that´ll be fun to be able to do together. I´m excited to hear all about your trip and everything! I´m a little bit jealous! But I¨m glad everything is dandy at home!! Makes me happy to hear.
This week has been crazy and super, super great! I´ve loved it a whole lot. Trio is going GREAT! I´m with Hermana Fuller and Hermana Pavez. They´re both fantastic. I´m so lucky to not only love my trainer but to love my other companion as well. Fuller has a year in the mission and Pavez has 6 months. They´re both fantastic missionaries and they´ve taught me a lot. I will be with Fuller for at least 12 weeks. Hermana Pavez is getting transferred either this week or next. She had to stay a little longer here for doctor´s appointments, which is the reason for the trio. It´s been great, though! 12 week training program is good! It´s basically a recap of what I did in the CCM. But I´ve learned a lot from Hermana Fuller, she´s a really awesome missionary. We´re different people for sure, but we get a long really super well. It´s a blessing. President and Sister Jackson are amazing. They´re like, perfect people, probably. haha. They´re just so loving and kind. I trust them a lot. I haven´t seen them since Tuesday and I probably won´t see them for awhile, but that´s normal. I think they´ll be awesome. Our piso is tiny and kind of dumpy but it´s really cool. We live right in the heart of Madrid, but the less touristy, rich part. Which is really really good. The people are more humble! I am in Barrio 2. Barrio means ward. So there are 8 wards in Madrid and I am in the 2nd one. We have a specific area in Madrid and it´s really cool. Reterio Park, which is where we would go tracting on Saturdays in the CCM, is in my area as well. We have a few investigators right now! We actaully have a lot, but I haven´t met them all yet. We also work a lot with menos activo and recent converts. The area is big and busy and pretty secular, but we´ve found some gem people here. Our ward has about 100 people that attend every week. This week we had three investigators at church, which was so awesome. They stayed the whole time, too! Church is hard for people but essential. We have our own capilla and we teach English lessons there, as well as a lot of normal lessons. It´s super awesome. Air conditioning is not really a thing here in the not so high tech city of Madrid. Luckily our piso has it, which is a saving grace. But everyone just has those way cool hand fan things, you know? It´s so cool. I´m buying one today. So I basically just sweat and sweat here. But everyone does. The Metro is the worst. SO HOT ALL THE TIME. We ride it at least 5 times a day, usually more. It´s fun but I hate tracting on the Metro. It´s actually my least favorite thing. haha but I just need to get over that, I think. Besides that, missionary work is the BEST. It makes people happy. At first people are confused when you approach them and they think you´re strange, but then they listen and feel the Spirit and it makes them happy. My Spanish is, to use the words of Elder Nash from my district, sucky. He said that about his Spanish, not mine, but the meaning is the same. I am really struggling with having the confidence to speak! I can understand a lot, but speaking is a joke. It´s hard because I feel like one of my greatest talents, the English language, has been taken away from me. But I know that I needed it. The Lord will always give us what we need, and I really need to better learn how to rely on Him and His Spirit. It´s been good just to learn how to listen. I learn more every day, and that´s really nice. Everyone tells me how good my Spanish really is, but I don´t believe them! haha. It will come. I know it will. My goal is to be able to speak good Spanish by Christmas when we Skype, so I can impress everyone. But the thing is… I can still do missionary work, even if I can´t speak the language! I work super, super hard every single day. The Lord helps me out so much. On Sunday I got a little frustrated after Church because I just wanted to understand and speak and to feel at home here. But then I got over myself, got to work, and we had an amazing night with so many miralces. It was awesome. I´ll tell you about one of them- so we got this random call from a guy named D. that we had never met, and we didn´t really even remember calling him. He asked us to meet him at the park for a lesson. So we did, and up walks this 15 year old, skater dude kid. It was kind of a shock and I sort of thought he was messing with us. But the thing was… not at ALL. This kid is prepared. We had the most spiritual lesson ever with him. Fuller and I were crying afterwards and it was just amazing. We´ll hopefully be able to meet with him tomorrow, which will be awesome. He was just a miracle. It´s rare to have young, Spanish people interested or even believe in God. But he totally does. He´s been reading the Book of Mormon that the Elders gave him (they then gave us his number and I guess we called him, but I don´t remember). Miracles…..
Missionary work is WORK. But the reason I love it so much is because it´s the LORD´S WORK. He´s behind this. He doesn´t need any of us to do this, but in His grace and love for us, He allows us to do our part. He trusts His work with the young, very inadequate people of His church because He loves us! Think about it- the Lord works through our weaknesses. He called Joseph Smith as a prophet of a dispensation when he was 14 years old. He called Moses, who couldn´t even speak, to be the prophet. Alma was a major sinner, Thomas S Monson almost burned down a mountain and Moroni was literally the last man alive. But the Lord works with us through our weaknesses. He helps us, not through what we can do, but through what we can´t. We were meant to be weak.
I love Madrid! I love the changes to my nature that this work has brought. I love all of you, so so much! I pray for you all every day and I hope everything is going so goooooood. Keep Madrid in your prayers! Miss you, love you, have a great trip!