Monday, September 28, 2015


Well friends, happy start to a new transfer. I'm still going to be hanging out here in the Hondo Pass ward in El Paso but Sister McKendrick is getting transferred, which means that I am getting a new companion from the north, but that's all I know. Sometimes you can kind of figure out who is going where but not this time! At least not as far as the people I know are concerned. So we'll just have to wait and see. I have a good feeling though that she is going to be pretty awesome.
A big part of our week was taken up by moving and preparing to move. We moved out of our old smoke infested apartment into a much nicer one a few streets down. The only downside is that we were supposed to have a washer and dryer. Now we have a washer and dryer hook up but... that's not quite the same. And yes, yes, I know, I should be grateful that we're not in Africa and have to use washboards and I am but it's still a bit of a bummer. Oh, last night was also a blood moon and so everyone was freaking out about it being the end of the world and signs of the times and all that junk. So that was interesting. We had to watch out for crazy people in the street on the way home a few times. 
This week we were able to have a few awesome lessons with Judy, Ron and Teresa and the Camachos. We also picked up a new investigator named Tonya who has a slightly racist son. He's just a kid but when we went to her house the other day and walked in the door he just looked at us and yelled "MOM! YOU DIDN'T TELL ME IT WAS WHITE PEOPLE WHO WERE COMING!!" and then stormed away. Well... sorry kid, not much I can do about that...
Ron and Teresa are doing really well; we just need to get them to come to church. I think they're just nervous to come especially since Ron has been inactive for so long but once they do I wouldn't be surprised if Teresa got on date pretty quickly after that. Thankfully conference is coming up next week and we're hoping that will be a good stepping stone into church. My birthday by the way has been a fantastic excuse to get people to watch conference. Yeah, we'll come over and celebrate and... listen to the prophet! Ha, ha.
 This week we also met a man named Jared who is in a part member family where the wife and kids just started coming back to church. He insists on calling everyone who's a member a Mormonite. It's actually pretty great, I sort of wish we really did call ourselves that. He's also not super impressed with the role of a Bishop. He comes from a Catholic background where apparently the Bishop does a lot of talking and stuff during the service. He told us "I could be the Bishop! All he ever does is sit there and check his watch. Seriously, sign me up for that job. I'll come open the church building 3 times earlier than he does!" His wife dared him to tell our Bishop that. Hopefully he doesn't but, that would be quite the sight to see. It's true though, it's hard to explain what the Bishop does and how busy it really is.
This Saturday as I'm sure you all know was the Women's Conference meeting. If you haven't seen it you should watch it, especially President Uchtdorf''s talk at the end. It is fantastic, and apparently, he has some pretty strong opinions about cats. I would love to see the memes people are making about that one. That's still a thing right? BYU memes was on a bit of a downward trek when I left though so who knows. Anyway, the talk was on finding happiness and being happy and I really enjoyed it.  
Something else I have been thinking about recently is keeping the Sabbath day holy. I know, it's something people have been talking about for forever! The interesting thing about the Sabbath is that it is entirely why we are doing something and not what we are doing that makes the difference. To some extent that is true of all of the commandments and things that we do, but just talking to people about the Sabbath has made me think more about why I do and don't do what I do then. Even with the standard things we do, like not shopping or playing sports, the why influences it. For example, I had a conversation with a friend a while ago where he told me that he was getting a movie from red box on Sunday and I told him that I was going to the library. In both instances we thought the other person was in the wrong on the same principle, not working/spending money on Sunday but for different reasons. His interpretation of it was that we don't spend money on Sunday so that we don't make other people work. So going to red box was find because it wasn't making anyone else work but going to the library was bad because even though you weren’t spending money, you were making people work by going there. My interpretation of it was, that we don't personally work, and we don't spend money because money is, in many cases the pure essence of worldliness, which is what we are trying to avoid on the Sabbath. So, going to the library was fine because I wasn't working or spending money, but getting a movie from red box was bad because it was spending money. Anyway, who was "right" I don't know, if anyone, but it was interesting to see how much the why influenced the what, even though the rule (don't work or spend money on Sunday) was the same. I don't have any cool answers or insights to this I guess, just something I've been considering as people have been talking more and more about the Sabbath day and how and why we keep it holy. In the end, ask God, and think about where your heart is, and if it's something you could do on another day if there's a question. So... yeah... sorry no wisdom here.

Ha, well, anyway...
Hope you all are doing well and talk to you soon!


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

This week was sooooo busy!

 Hopefully I can tell you all everything I want to.
Our car that has been broken since I got here (just the window) finally got fixed this week! Which took a little time.
Something that's been particularly busy this week is Sister McKendrick's broken shoulder. She messed it up in high school and then reinjured it this week. So we have been running around going to the doctor and talking to President and Sister Miller and trying to figure everything out. I even got to talk to her dad for a few minutes on the phone to get some medical information. So that was kind of cool, although strange for her I'm sure. So, what we finally found out is that starting next week she gets to do physical therapy three times a week for at least a month! Ha, that will be fun I'm sure.
This week we also went on exchanges with the Ysletta Hermana.I got to drive a Jeep (don't ask me why they have a Jeep, I have no idea) and smile at people and pretend that I knew what they were saying. Man I wish there was some easy way to learn Spanish. It was fun though, and I really liked doing language study. I wish that we had language study. I mean... I don't want to get switched to Spanish speaking, no Heavenly Father that is not what I'm saying! But language study was fun and it'll be cool to get to do it with the other Hermanas this transfer. Maybe going on all of these exchanges will help me to finally know at least what these people are saying! I can actually read pretty decently people just talk way too fast for me! We have probably 4 more this transfer so I guess we'll see. The Sister that I went on exchanges with Hermana Torres, and I actually came out together, so that was kind of cool to see her again too. 
This week we had two baptisms as well! Well, one convert and then the member who was getting rebaptized that I told you about last week. Felicity's baptism was great and she brought a lot of her family. We're also planning to start teaching her friend this week or next week too, so that is pretty exciting. President and Sister Miller also randomly showed up for the baptism and it was a little funny to see our poor Ward Mission Leader's reaction when we told him. Ha, he was a little nervous but it was great! The other baptism was fantastic as well, very small and quiet of course, but very good.
I can't remember if I told you all about the couple the pulled up to us in their truck and invited us over for dinner? Well, ha, if not, that happened and we went and had dinner with them on Thursday. Ha, there are so many things I do as a missionary that there's just no way I would as a regular person. It went great though! The husband is a less active member and is really interested in coming back. His wife grew up Catholic but as we were talking to her about The Book of Mormon she got really interested and they committed to reading it a little every night. Hopefully we'll see them again this week!
So, something that I have been thinking about this week is Psalms 24: 3-4, which says "Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord, or who shall stand in His holy place? He that hath clean hands and a pure heart, who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully." Most of the time when we talk about this scripture we are talking about the temple, God's holy place. In order to be worthy to go to the temple you have to have clean hands, or action, but also a pure heart. To do things for the right reasons. But this time I have been thinking about it in the terms of standing in place of. Who shall stand in His holy place? When you stand in place of something, you represent it. To stand in place of Him is to represent The Lord, or Christ. And as missionaries and even members of the Church, what is it that we say we do? We represent Him, we take His name upon us, and we receive His image in our continuance. And what do we have to do to do that? Have clean hands and a pure heart. There's a sweet quote that I'm about to butcher that says something along the lines of People should want to know Christ because you know Him, and they know you. When we talk His name upon us, we stand in His holy place. I guess in a way that it's really all the same, being a representative or being worthy to go to the temple, at least as far as qualifications. But thinking about it like that was a little different for me, and it made me think about how others see me and how I act around them I guess. Anyway, that's just something to mull over. Let me know what you think.
Well, I hope you all are doing well and that your week goes well!