So this week was actually pretty fun.
I got to start of the week by going to Topolobampo for inter cambios (exchanges). And I was super excited to go there because I got to be near the ocean. Topo is a pretty nice pueblo. It is shaped kind of like a bowl. Our house was on one rim of the bowl and our investigators were always on the opposite side of the bowl.
One of the best parts was that I was participating alot more in the lessons because I could actually understand the people of Topo. For some reason all the people there speak very clearly even though it is a very poor pueblo. But it was super fun to be able to live in a different house and be in a different area. The only thing that I did not like were the cucarachas. There were always a bunch of cucarachas in the house and I would always see them at night when I was too tired to kill them. I remember getting a drink and seeing one of them run across the counter at night. But all and all Topo was a lot of fun. It is about 45 minutes from Los Mochis so we had to take two buses to get there.
This week we had zone meeting and it was awesome because we got to have the mission president at our zone meeting. One of my favorite things about our president is that he knows everyones´ name without having to look at our tags. So he was able to talk to all of us and call us by name, and I was really impressed with that. But our meeting was about how we can teach in the manner of the Lord. I was able to realize that we are Christ's representitives and because we represent Him, we have to try and teach in the way that He would.
So I am alot more confident in my Spanish than I used to be. In zone meeting, I was able to tell everyone what our investigators are stuggling with and afterwards the sisters said that my Spanish is very good. All of them said that I am learning really fast, but I know that I owe all that to the Lord and his help to learn this language.
Elder Lowry gave me some good advice. He said that if I don't know what I am going to say, I should just open my mouth and start talking. Because if I am prompted by the spirit to talk then I will receive help with what I am supposed to say. And I know this is true because I have done it multiple times throughout this week. I can actually understand the people fairly well, at least enough to be able to follow a conversation and ask questions to see if they understand.
We are in the Macapule ward and we have another set of sisters that helps to cover the area of the ward because the boundries are huge. And yes, we do have cell phones. Everyone in the mission has cell phones. It is actually really funny because the people here all have two phones. They have one really cheap one that they use for calling and then they have a smartphone that doesn't have any service but they use it as a computer because it is way cheaper.
Paul's baptism went really well. However, Elder Lowry and I had to scrub the font before because the last ward that used it didn't empty all the water, so there was mold all over the bottom and it smelled like death. So that took like an hour and then we had to wait for it to fill up before we could continue with our day. But the baptism went well. His brother-in-law baptized him and the only thing that was disappointing was that we put the baptism at 3 so that his mom could come and then the day before, when she was signing his permission to be baptized, she said that she wouldn't be able to come. That night everyone called us asking if we could change the baptism to 5 instead of 3, so we did. And on top of all that, we did not have comida because the sister that was going to feed us was sick. But then we had a little miracle. As we were walking with plans of basically fasting all day, we visited a less active member and as we were leaving she told us to come back to have comida with her. We were so grateful for that.
Also yesterday, I had to give a talk and because I literally had no time to write it I only had less than half a page of bullet points prepared. But I had faith that I would recieve help in my talk to know what to say. And it was true. I went up and was actually able to give a decent talk to the members. I could tell that I was being inspired with what I should say because I have never spoken that long continuosly in Spanish. :) After my talk, all the ward members said that I did a very good job and Elder Lowry was also impressed. He said that I had said pretty much everything perfect in my talk.
So, my talk was about "el obra de salvación" or the work of salvation. And it started with preaching the gospel. Now the most obvious part of this is that the missionaries teach. But the point is to recognize that the people in the ward are supposed to be buscadores or searchers to find people for the missionaries to teach. One of our mission rules is that everytime we enter a house we have to ask if their is anyone that they believe should hear this message. Because in all missions the area is too big for the missionaries to find everyone and we need the help of the members.
The next part was about perfecting the saints and how we need to do all we can to be converted so that we can strengthen others. Especially in Mexico, there are so many people who get baptized, but then later they forget why they got baptized and the feelings they had to know its true, so they fall away. We spend alot of time with the less actives in our ward so whenever you have the opportunity to help strengthen someone... do it. I like to think about the example of the Savior. After he died on the cross...a lot of us forget that for those three days before he was resurrected, he was ministering to the people in the spirit world! He never stops working to do his father's will. He is our inspiration that our work is never finished and that we can always do more.
And this leads in to the last part of the "obra" which is the work for the dead. To find names and people that need their ordanances done in the temple. Just because we may not think there is work that we can do here there is always work that needs to be done for those that have passed on.
So that was my talk. I don't really remember everything I said, but it went something like that. I am healthy and well. We are still looking for new invesigators to teach but we know that we are going to find someone this week. I love you all and wish you all the best.
|The apartment with the cucarachas at Topolobampo|