So zone pday last week turned out pretty well. We played ultimate frizbee, some other games, had the most amazing dinner ever (hahah we didn't quite coordinate actually getting the spaghetti people had brought into the croc pots other people had brought well enough so dinner might have been a little colder than anticipated but hey it all tastes the same right? haha im learning) and then we watched the saratov approach. By the way, Saratov Russia is exactly 100% opposite from my mission. I liked the movie though because It reminded me of how special and important it is to be serving a mission. So special that people will kidnap us. Just kidding mom, that only happens in movies about real life stories.
This week 3 people, yes on THREE different occasions by new investigators, told us that they thought that I was "la mama' and hermana gibson "la hija". People are thinking that I am hermana Gibson's mom! Im not sure who this has been more insulting to haha But if I hear it from one more person this week Im taking my daughter and walking out.
We taught two really cute old hispanic ladies this week. One was a member referral and the other her neighbor. We discovered though that old people literally cannot hear hermana gibson when she speaks because of the frequency of her voice. It was slightly sad/hilarious because she would say something, they would look at me and say....what did she say? Then I would say the exact same thing hermana gibson did and they'd be like oooohhhh ok. Haha we might have to stay away from that teaching pool for a while.
Funny experience of the week- we were going with a member named hermana horn to visit our ward mission leaders wife who is a recent convert. We missed the turn to their house so we had to do a uturn on the side of the road. We cleared it but hermana Horn's car got completely stuck in the mud on the side of the road. We took off our shoes and got down to about shin deep mud (this is at like 830 at night mind you) and were trying so hard to push it out...I mean we are pretty buff but two hermanas in skirts vs. car doesn't turn out too well. We called our WML who looks like a dominican hercules, and he came to the rescue and 45 minutes later and completely covered in nasty mud we finally got it out. Did I mention that this happened on the lawn of a lonely old 95 year old man? I know because he came out with his cane and said "You destroyed my lawn!! I am a 95 year old man!" That made us feel great. Definitely one for the journal.
So. I'm getting a little...farther along in the life of a missionary...And I've been distracted a little bit about knowing when I should go home. My release date is January 5th and school at BYU starts up a few days before that and my brother will probably leave for his mission days after I get home. So i had this conflict...it would work out so beautifully for me to go home a few weeks early, spend some time with family, get everything organized for school and start on time...but I don't want to end early if Heavenly Father needed me here more. I fasted on Tuesday to know what I should do. And that day I had a really powerful, spiritually led study. I learned so much that helped me receive my answer. One thing was that I came to the very clear realization that Heavenly Father would not have called me when he did, if he did not expect me to cross the finish line when I'm planned to. He wouldn't call me on a mission that He didn't have the intention for me to finish all the way. That would show that He didn't have faith in me! And me finishing even one minute earlier than what He has already planned would show that I don't have faith in Him. As I was studying the atonement that day, I was really touched by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Before Christ performs the atonement, he asks Heavenly Father if there would be an easier way. If he could take the bitter cup away. But he said not my will, but yours, and then performed the single most important act in the history of the world. Christ lived a perfect life. He did a lot of good things. If he would have just lived, then not done the atonement because it was hard and uncomfortable, then died, he still would have accomplished a lot of great things. But He would have missed the point of His entire purpose of coming to earth. I have been able to do a lot of good things on my mission and have learned a lot. But if I went home early just because it's more convenient for me, I will have missed the point. i wouldn't have learned faith and the ability to completely submit my will to God's.I cant make decisions in my life, just based off of what seems best according to my own understanding. If I want to fulfill the potential and mission heavenly father has for me, I need to follow his will. I finished my fast telling Heavenly Father that I am completely, 100% His. I have faith that if I completely love the Lord and get rid of all distractions, that Heavenly Father will make sure that everything works out with the things that are important to me when I return. So January 5th it is.
another miracle I couldn't help but include- last night we had an hour to find. I prayed that we would be led to two people who would accept the baptismal invitation. The very first door we knocked, the woman let us in into her home where her family and friends were sitting on the couch and she said these missionaries were just telling me they believe that Christ restored his church through a prophet (this is in spanish). For the next 30 min or so, we stood in this room and testified of the restoration of the priesthood. It was probably one of the most heated discussions I've had...They were completely opposed to it and were throwing everything they had at us to tear us and our beliefs down. It was pretty brutal. We invited them to pray, then politely excused ourselves. We walked out of that first door knocked pretty roughed up. But we kept going and received rejection at the next few doors. The hour was up and we still hadn't found the two people. We looked at each other though and said it didn't matter because we weren't going to stop until we did. and what do you know? The next door, a cute hispanic couple opened up and immediately invited us in when I said we shared a message about how we teach families how they can become eternal. We taught them the restoration and I've never taught anyone so genuinely interested in what I had to say. They accepted the baptismal invitation with ease. My testimony of the reality of my savior and father in heaven grew yesterday. I know He answers prayers.
Love you all. Que Dios les bendiga.