I have a lot that I want to share with you from this week! It was a week full of miracles... changing... and learning :)
First of all.......... I cannot believe I am turning 20 this week. There is no way. jajaja. That makes me sound old. I am excited though :) My companion from Mexico is going to make me tacos to celebrate on Sunday!!!! :) #stilllLOVEmexicanfood
So, this week :) Here in Ica (pronounced eee-kah), my companion and I are working part-time proscelyting (still have no idea how to spell that word jajaja) and part time as Family History Retention Specialists! ..... Sounds fancy, no? ;) jeje. It really is the best. I have gained SUCH a testimony of family history since I started working with it in Chincha. Now in Ica... seriously, family history works MIRACLES in retention. When someone is baptized, the MOST important thing is for them to go to the temple. If they go to the temple, and do vicarious work for their own ancestors... their retention rate is AMAZING. They will not become inactive. They will be truly converted. I have seen that change in people. And it is incredible :)
Being able to work in an area AND in family history is really hard - because both have to be excellent! We are not only responsible for all of our own investigators and people - but we are in charge of all of the recent converts and reactivated members of 20 other missionaries!! We always are slammed with things to do, and are always running around to make sure that everything gets done and that everyone has their needs met :) I. Love. It. It is exhausting. President Douglas told me in my letter this week that we were reaching the level of work that the assistants have ;) jajajaja. I highly doubt that, but we definitely are working hard :)
Probably the reason everything is so hard and hectic is that we opened a new area this transfer at the same time as everything! Meaning.... my companion knows absolutely nothing about the area, neither do I, we only get to work there 3 days a week, and we still are expected to find 10 new investigators every week, have 30 lessons, and have 10 people with a baptismal date. ................. yeah so we have our work cut out for us ;) Once we learn the street names I will get back to you on that one, okay? ;)
This week on Saturday, we are taking a trip to the TEMPLE in Lima with all of the recent converts and reactivated members that we are working with in FAMILY HISTORY! We have been working so hard to help them all find names to take to the temple, and we are all going to go together on Saturday!! :) :) :) We have to leave at 1 in the morning, ride a bus for 7 hours, and then we will be there all day :) Hermana Santiago and I don't get to go inside the temple with them, but we will be outside the whole time and will be there to share the experience with them :) We have a group of 20 people, and for all of them it is their first time going to the temple :) They have been so changed by the Spirit of Elijah, they are willing to make any sacrifice to make it to the temple :) They are sacrificing time... money... so many things, just to go to the house of the Lord. It is such an example to me.
If you are reading this, and you have a temple within 3 hours of your house, say a thank-you-prayer to Heavenly Father right now. No, seriously. Stop reading this and say a 30 second prayer. ...................... Okay, said your prayer? Ready?
You are blessed.
....You are SO blessed.
I don't think you know how blessed you are.
Now, if you have a family that was sealed in the temple, say another prayer. I hope this one might be a little longer than 30 seconds.
..... Do you realize how blessed you are? Do you realize how blessed you are to not only KNOW that families are forever, but to have one? Do you understand how BLESSED you are to be able to go to the house of the Lord and participate in the work of salvation? The work of SALVATION. You are saving people. Just as our Redeemer gave His life as a vicarious sacrifice for all men, and in so doing became our Savior, even so we, in a small measure, when we engage in proxy work in the temple, become as saviors to those on the other side. Think about that.... you can be a Savior for someone in your family. Someone who is waiting.
So, what are you waiting for?
Go to the temple :)
Go to a family history center.
Find names, find SOULS, in your family that are waiting to be saved.
And then save them :)
I testify that this is the work of the Lord. This is His Kingdom. The temple is HIS house. I love being a part of His army, and I love being engaged in the work of salvation. But remember - you don't have to be a missionary to love and serve the Lord :) You can do it today. You can do it now. I testify of a loving Heavenly Father who smiles on His children every time they make a choice for good.
Okay.... one more thank you prayer. This time, make it a long one. Think of the blessings your loving Father in Heaven has given you that you have yet to thank Him for. Let Him know you are grateful :)
I love you all. I am grateful for YOU. You are a part of my life that I give thanks for every day.
The church sure is true :)
Hermana Sintay :)