Monday, January 26, 2015

Email #74 (Gilbert, AZ)

January 19, 2015
Hola mi familia!!!
Hey, so this email might be relatively short, because I have to send a whole bunch of pictures to someone for our departing slide show...:( haha but I have a lot to tell you so sorry if it's a little jumbled!

First of all, CHRIS! Chris is our new investigator who is amazing. He speaks both spanish and english perfectly. He was a hand off from the sisters in a family ward, and he actually ended up being a former we have in our area book! He has been taught before and they oymed him on the way to an appt and he said he had been taught before and he was supposed to be baptized. We had two lessons with him this past week. We taught him the Restoration and we had a church tour with him. We also put him on date to be baptized for the 7th of February. He is so awesome and really open and willing to change. His issue is that he is struggling to forgive himself for the things he has done in the past, and he feels like he isn't worthy of forgiveness from God. From that, he also said that he feels like every time he tries to get close to God, everything in his life goes wrong and he just feels angry and frustrated. I honestly think that comes from his inability to forgive himself and his feelings of unworthiness because he wants God, he wants light and truth in his life but he doesn't feel like he deserves it because of his past. Which isn't true at all. We are going to focus on repentance and the Atonement with him a lot. That being said, he didn't come to church yesterday and he hasn't contacted us today at all, despite our texts and calls. A ver...
Also! TIM CAME TO CHURCH!!! WHOOOOOOOO!!! He started his new job and he came to all three hours and he loved it! He is also going to FHE tonight so hopefully we see a lot of progress from his efforts to be involved:) He is awesome.
ALSO. We had a miracle in the branch this past week. The elders were knocking doors on their way over to dinner (which was in our area) and they came across one of the sweetest ladies ever. Her name is Beatriz and she loved what the elders taught her so she came to church yesterday and LOVED it. We are going to go by this week and start teaching her! MILAGROS.
The last thing I want to tell you about is the revelation I received this morning. In the past few weeks I've been doing a lot of reflecting (obviously). I've been striving to avoid trunkiness and thoughts of going home, but sometimes they still come. Something that has been difficult for me the past few weeks is having the fear of losing all I've become when I get home. I just have these little freak outs that not being a missionary anymore, not having the mantle, not having the schedule or a companion, or worrying about the salvation of my investigators is going to lead me to losing all that I've gained on my mission. I've become a very different person in the last year and a half. A much happier, more obedient, more spiritually and emotionally sound person who has a real and strong relationship with her Savior and with her Heavenly Father. I am far from perfect still, but I am really scared that I'll lose all that I've become. I want to continue to progress instead of reverting to the same person I was before. Does that make sense?
So anyways, I've had this fear in the back of my mind for the past little bit and this morning we were reading some of "The Fourth Missionary" in comp study and we read a part that hit my heart hard. It says 
"If you want light, intelligence, strength, capacity, peace, contentment, grace, knowledge, power, happiness, mercy, joy and every other good thing, then you may have those too. It is up to you. Whatever you want. You cannot be spiritually changed against your will. It is contrary to agency. It is also contrary to the nature of things. It just can't happen". Hearing that took a great burden off of my shoulders. I can CHOOSE to progress. I can CHOOSE to continue to apply the things I've learned on my mission to continue to become the person God wants me to be. Becoming who I was before cannot happen against my will. So empowering. 
Anyways, that was a big eye-opener for me.

HAVE AN AMAZING WEEK, FAMILIA!!! I love you so so so much!
Hermana Lattin


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