Monday, February 16, 2015

All my heart, might, mind, and strength

Happy Monday!
    Another week has flown by and I am sitting here in the internet shop with my feet covered in sand feeling so content because we had our zone activity earlier at the beach! We got to play so much sand soccer I was so happy haha. Last transfer we played soccer with this mini soccer ball I had but this time someone brought a real sized ball! It was so happy. Sorry about last week. We were really rushing to get to our work and I also really had to use the bathroom haha. I hope I can update you guys on everything from this week.
    Rolly: Keeps progressing and is no longer smoking!!! He would be baptized today if he could. But we are on track for February 28. He comes to church and is practically a member already. Thank you guys for your prayers for Rolly. The whole branch is pumped up for his baptism because they have been wanting him to join the church for a long time now. The fact that they didn't give up and now he is finally entering the waters of baptism shows what God can do if we continue forward with Faith and Hope in Him.
    The Mendoza Family: We have had some really great lessons with their family this week where they have really opened up with us. Every lesson leads back to what will be expected of them as members of this church. They are strongly considering what it means to be baptized and it's amazing to see how God has prepared them. They both shared a bit about what kind of pasts they come from. It turns out they actually met in prison haha. Crazy right? And now they both have come to realize that for themselves and their children, they never want to go back to where they were before. And they feel that this gospel is exactly what will help them to be on the right path. The only problem now is their work. I think I have explained before that their jobs are collecting bottles and metals and then selling it to junk shops. The best days of their work are saturday and sunday. We are trying our best to help them see if they put their faith first and make a sacrifice, then the blessings will come.
     President Balledos has given us permission to extend a date to them for baptism. Since divorce is illegal here, there is an exception in the requirements for baptism. Even if they have former spouses, if they have been living together for 5 or more years and show that they are really committed to each other, then they can be baptized. They will be living together for 5 years this August and President said that we should extend an invitation and commit them to be baptized in August. We think this will help them to see that they have the time to test the assurance that God gave us when we do what He says he will be bound to us. Please keep praying for the Mendozas that they may become willing to try and test this promise.
     It has gotten to the point here on the mission that somehow almost everyone knows that I will be going home soon. I don't even mention it yet it seems to be the hot topic everywhere haha. Especially here in Bauang branch, they work a lot with the missionaries and know everything about how the mission works and they know that this will be my last area. They are planning farewell parties and firesides and now I can't help but face the reality that I am going home. The days aren't slowing down and if I am going to be honest, I might be a little scared. I am scared I am not going to accomplish all that the Lord needs me to in the time that I have left here. The title of this email is all my heart, might, mind, and strength.
     I have been trying to come up with ways to push myself to serve with MORE heart and more might, more mind, and more strength. Something I tried doing this week was advice given to us by President Balledos. We had our Zone Conference this week where President gave us a lesson in the Bible. He said he wanted to share a love story in honor of Valentine's day haha so he shared a bit about the story between Isaac, Leah and Rachel. But ultimately he shared about the House of Israel. The House of Israel is the Lord's covenant people. Ultimately His covenant says that He will bless us and prosper us if we do what He says. This goes back to the idea that we are trying to get the Mendoza family to understand. It is such a simple doctrine yet it can be so hard to live by. We have a loving Heavenly Father who has given us life. In our life we have good times and bad but no matter what our circumstance, we are expected to follow Him. And if we do so, we will be blessed. We can see how He never went back on his word with the people of the Bible, Book of Mormon, and even with our own friends and family.
     President recommended that we keep this covenant in mind as we go about our work. We may receive punt after punt or rejection after rejection, but if I am doing what the Lord has commanded me to do, I have no reason to be sad or discouraged. I wish you guys could have just been there when President was giving his workshop because I know my summary does not do it justice. But it has helped to refuel my desire and keep serving Him with all of our heart, might, mind and strength. I hope everyone has a great week! I wasn't even able to read your emails from last week because we were so rushed so I can't wait to read 2 weeks worth of emails when I get home! Oh and also, we got to watch Meet the Mormons at our zone conference! It was sooo good and touching. And I only cried like one tear haha of course at the missionary mom part. But it was such a good movie and I can't wait til it comes out on DVD and things so that more people can see it! If you haven't already watched it, I recommend it. Hope everyone has a good week! Love you all!
- Sister Sawada

No comments:

Post a Comment