Monday night we had dinner with some recent converts — Perla and Felipe and their sons Eduardo and Aaron. We asked them why they thought the Lord asks us to fast, and they turned to us and said: “That’s a good question.” We all read from Isaiah 58:6-11 and I testified of the purposes and power of fasting — that it is literally a sacrifice and that the Lord blesses us as we make this sacrifice. We don’t eat or drink for 24 hours (or two consecutive meals) and with that money we would have saved from those two meals, we donate it to help those in need. And through fasting and paying fast offerings, the Lord blesses us. We invited them to start living the law of fast. What was amazing to us was that during weekly planning we felt impressed to teach that lesson, and it was exactly what they needed.
Tuesday night we visited Mirta and Daniel with Hermana and Hermano Muñoz (other ward missionaries). We started teaching the Restoration by asking them how they felt from the picture of Jesus Christ and the lamb. We connected this to families, and they said their family means everything to them. When we asked them how they would feel if they could live together as a eternal family. Mirta commented that that is their ultimate goal. We asked them what a prophet does, and they responded that he is a guide, talks with God, and is righteous. We testified of the role of prophets throughout time, and Mirta said she was surprised that we called Adam a prophet. We asked them how would a prophet help them in this day and age. They responded that a prophet is truly needed right now with all the crazy things going on in the world. We need a leader chosen by God who can help us. We testified of President Thomas S. Monson, God’s living prophet on the earth. We read Efesios 2:20 and Apocalipsis 1:1 and testified that the church Christ established on the earth during his mortal ministry has been restored to the earth after years of apostasy. We testified of Joseph Smith’s First Vision with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Hermano and Hermana Muñoz shared their powerful testimonies and experiences coming to know the truth of the Restoration. They said yes to our invitation to be baptized when they come to the knowledge that this is the Church of Jesus Christ. We invited them to pray to know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. They said they are willing to read and pray to know from God that it is true.
On Wednesday we and Hermana Pead (one of the ward missionaries who just had a surgery this last week) met with
Guadalupe. We started the lesson by asking her about how she felt when she was baptized. She said she felt amazing, brand new, clean, and enlightened. We then connected how she felt at her baptism to how she can feel when she goes to the temple. Hermana Pead shared her testimony of what the temple means to her in her life and answered some questions from Guadalupe about what goes on in the temple. We read 1 Peter 3:18-20, D&C 138:47-48, and D&C 43:16 and testified of the power the temple brings into our lives as we make sacred covenants with God, learn more about Jesus Christ and the Plan of Salvation, and as we serve our families and help them receive sacred ordinances. We invited her to prepare to go to the temple and to start preparing the names of her family to take with her to the temple. Guadalupe is excited to go to the temple and to take the names of her grandparents and friends who have died. 🙂
Also, I have seen how the Lord has guided me. Even though I am away from Provo, I sometimes feel impressed that I need to write a note or letter to a family there. Sometimes I don’t know why I am writing certain things, but I trust the Lord in what He tells me to say. And a few days after I wrote a letter to a family this past week, I found out from other missionaries that that family was struggling. Then I remembered what I had written in that note and its counsel and love were directed to those needs.
Yesterday at Sacrament Meeting I saw the Obando family! They are from the Provo Slate Canyon ward, and my ears almost popped out from all the hugs and happiness. And Melany told me that she went through the temple and is now endowed and sealed to her parents (the Obandos)! Yippee! I am SO happy.
Later that afternoon we gave talks in one of the English wards. Earlier that week I was feeling stressed about what I would be saying — so much that I started crying. It felt frustrating not having everything come together as quickly as I wanted, but after much prayer and a break, things came together. I didn’t write the talk word for word — just an outline, and then I so trusted in the Lord’s promise in D&C 84:85. And everything worked out. I felt the spirit guiding me as I spoke, and I am grateful that God hears and answers prayers.
I am also grateful for this privilege I have to learn Spanish and be able to share my testimony with more of God’s children. Later that afternoon we felt a little discouraged as many families with whom we had appointments weren’t home. But we prayed and kept going, and the Lord guided us and we met a new young man, made appointments to visit other families, and talked with a less-active sister who expressed how happy she is when she finds our notes on her door or car, knowing that the sisters came by. She also told us that she can feels happier and more motivated every time we visit — we leave a spirit in her home, and it makes her day better.
We finished weekly planning yesterday, and then all our plans got deleted. So we are feeling the stress. Could you pray for us that we can feel at peace and trust in and follow the spirit this week?