Monday, August 18, 2014

"The book is blue and the Church is TRUE" and "Hna Ball: missionary, wedding planner and mud trudger"

August 11th
Yet again, the computer crashed. And yet again I am sitting here fighting back the tears because this is so frustrating- This week was one of my very favorite weeks and so full of truly beautiful experience- which I had written but it looks like one more week of a quick rundown. 

“I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I awoke and behold, service was joy. ¨-Rabindranath Tagore

What a dream of a week it was! A week of service and so much joy. 

Favorite things:
- H and F. We taught them about the Book of Mormon, about how it can answer any questions and all- the spirit was so strong and when I asked them the baptismal question I thought it was a sure thing, an easy yes- but she immediately explained no- which was a dagger let me tell you. But it is because they know they are not ¨good in the eyes of God¨ and need to get married first! (woohoo law of chastity!) But they came to church and everything was perfect. woohoo. I love H so much. 

- Speaking of church, guess who snuck over to our church building in Sunday- R. The sly dog. She explained how it would never happen again, but ha-ha I love it. It's so bad and I do not like disobedience :) ) However, it was so good. How I love this crazy lady. She explained how even without our reading lessons she has been reading the book of Mormon everyday day (and showed me with her cute little notes and all) and how she hasn’t missed a week of church. How she is helping the Young Women and looooves it. This lady- I love R more than I can even explain. It is amazing to see the love and joy in her eyes. 

2 miracles:
1- the miracle of the inactive who would not open the door.
 We were knocking and knocking and he wouldn’t answer (which is so opposite of him- he’s the cute little old man who waits at the door for us to come) so right after knocking and all a lady walked by and we turned to contact her- we gave her a pass-along card of Jesucristo after the resurrection and I explained how we were missionaries and all that, then that families can be forever- to which she started to cry a little and explained she was on the way to the cemetery because it was the 1 year anniversary of her mothers passing. It was short and sweet and we were able to explain a little about Gods plan for her and her mother. She left for the cemetery so full of love and hope and it was the best thing to see and feel. 
our tiny barbie house
Also, the miracle of the forgotten scarf. Seriously I explained this in the other letter how it was all spiritual and all- but here it is. 
Forgotten scarf (which never happens really.)  We were walking away and talked about how we need to leave this family because it is hard to find the spirit in this house. The next day we realized that we had forgotten a scarf.  We went back for the scarf a couple days later- not only find the scarf but find a gooolden investigator- the granddaughter who we are now teaching.  I'm telling you- it’s so cool to be a missionary and see these little tender mercies everyday. 
My favorite investigators
This week was so spiritual and I had the best experience- but don’t have time now- I will go home and write it down and send it or something. Here are little facts of the week. 

I can get mail- and oh boy did I get it!

1- package from gma ball-. With the best little treats and I looove these little packs of treats in a mug. Gold. 
2- letter from mom. Love they made me cry and laugh and smile so much. Pls send more. (This was with the byu pin-love my pin collection- and the stickers) send more love notes. 

3- notes from gma ball. oh how I love it. She and grandma simpkins are SO GOOD to write every week. Best grandmas in the mission. 
- And 4. Oh wait no. 8 (oh my) postcards. Hahaha I wanted to kill you but I was laughing too hard. Oh my you kids. You little buggers. I love you so much. 

Cool things about Rio Bueno. 
-Its beautiful- my favorite geographical sector (not sure if that a word- its my favorite stuff about nature and all. You know)
But really, mud trudging all day, sometimes walking through cow fields, sometimes crawling through barbwire fences, sometimes slugs chilling in the house (love this. really its so funny), sometimes flashlights because the fog is so thick. 

My sector is about 20 miles long and so cool. We are focused in one part- but so cool. After lunch the moon is out all day long and so beautiful. The streets are little rivers in the rain. And it is so green and beautiful. Also we are somewhat heading into spring- so sunshine-ish. :) Did I mention I love Rio Bueno...?

Well family (hopefully) more next week. We never know- but hey that’s the adventure right!

This service is such a joy. 
I am literally living a dream and I love it. I love serving, mud trudging and mostly testifying of Him always! I love being a missionary! Have a happy last week of summer!

xoxo found bacon for the first time and could literally taste home  xoxo

Hna Ball

August 18th
¨To be humble is to recognize gratefully your dependence on the Lord. It is an indication that you know where your true strength lies. You can be both humble and fearless. You can be both humble and courageous.¨ - True to the faith

When I start out with a quote like this I think you all can get the feel of how the week was. Wow- what a truly crazy great, but what a hard week. You know? I learned a lot about my dependence on the Lord and where my strength truly is. But slowly, with the good, the bad, the rain, and the sun with it all I am seeing how through Him I am becoming fearless and courageous. Especially in these experiences where it’s so hard it’s humbling, or so happy I’m humbled to be a part of it. 
Our mommasita
The hardest for me is the rejection, the fallen appointments, and getting to know a new sector. The hardest was how we had 29 appointments this week- super crazy good appointments- but all fell through except 8, and out of these 8 only 4 were investigators. We had other lessons where we just stopped by- but oh my, it was so frustrating. 

Especially, because right now I feel I am the most obedient personally I’ve been the entire mission. But I just feel sometimes I am not having ¨success" and don’t understand why. 
Trying to stay warm
But then I just remember that in the experience to be humble and fearless and courageous- the humility comes first. 

The good thing is, the things good about this week- were really good. 

First we have a couple of gems that are progressing. "A" and "H". They actually contacted us- best. They showed up for English classes and loved it. Afterword’s we wrote down the direction to their house and have been visiting them. They are brother and sister, both young adults and so great. We have had crazy lessons with them- they don’t really want to commit to anything to much (and I think its because their mom is menos activo (less active) and has a little bit of problems with the church.) 
But she is fine with us visiting and we are slowly cracking the ice cold wall she’s got built up (oh boy its big one) :) Buuuuuut when we are with "A" and "H" we can just feel it. The spirit, the understanding when we teach. All of it. Love.  Just in one of our lessons we taught all of the restoration, the book of Mormon, baptism, and the first part of the plan of salvation. They are crazy- and I love it. 

We are helping a daaarling family prepare to be sealed in the temple. What gems. The kids were just baptized and we´ve been working a lot with them. Love. 

Then speaking of weddings- remember H and F- taught them all these good things, they came to church... well they want to get married- for real! woohooo. I called it. We´ve got some details to figure out, but oh boy I am so excited- and in a year I’m going to be in Santiago for when they go through the temple- calling it now. (Oh maybe I am getting little excited. They only came to church one time and still haven’t committed to a baptismal date hahaha, but I love them.)

Ok, but a cute little story about them. So one of our appointments fell through so we call them up and they are all, "oh it's late we are getting ready for bed" all this then we hear them whispering and they are all. "Come on over!" So we stop by and it’s a full on pj party, they are making us a fire and pancakes and ready with suuuch good questions. We are talking about F here, the guy who wasn’t quite sure about God. And now asking all these questions like ¨but if God loves us and the garden of Eden is perfect why would he let Satan enter- was it part of God's plan or did it just happen¨ (what? love.)

Dad, I love you. Just wanted to let you know. 
Spring has begun to sprung
Here the idea of the father is different. I don’t know how to explain it. But that’s why I love being here- I looove, love, love teaching people that no matter what the circumstance with their father here in Chile, they have a Heavenly Father who wants to be part of their lives and who loves them and knows them. 

When I explain whom our Heavenly Father is- I explain him, but a lot of times I explain the love, support and acceptance I feel from you, pops. And it’s through you and your example I’ve learned how to feel this love, support and all from my Heavenly Father- because I can acknowledge it. I sure love you punk. 
Thanks for the package mom
The other thing I love here- is kneeling in prayer. A lot of times it is the only time the family is together, kneeling in prayer and when they are able to hear their father pray. 

Ok, more about “F”. What? This kid! We were struggling one time- every plan had failed- literally plan a, b, c, d, e, f, and up to g. One of those times. So we stop and say a little teary prayer. Then we go and try more and nothing. Then more and nothing. Then we knock, literally, an entire street of houses and only 1 house answered (and they only opened the window for 2 seconds. ha-ha) So we are all "ok now what?" So we start walking to a different part of the sector and we contact him- then found out we had contacted his grandma earlier in the week. So we set an appointment with him (one of the appointments that actually worked out) and we taught him the restoration. So good. Oh, it was a lot of work before we found him but everything afterword’s had fallen into place. Bummer part- he’s leaving for a week and a half. Super good part he wants to learn more and has promised to read why he’s gone. So hopefully news to come. 
Our friend the goat
This week was also a week of sun! Oh my love. And a week of goat chasing in the street. Seriously this goat is just always chilling in a pack of dogs and I love it. The plan is to train it to follow us- I’m thinking a breadcrumb trail to start with. Then when he had confidence maybe a little name badge. Love him. 

We also had zone conference this week. Can I just tell you how much I love zone conference? First, it was about an hour bus ride and we were smashed in this sketchy bus with all these people- we used the time to have a little Spanish class for me and taught everyone around us the first lesson. Ha-ha 

Also now Hermana Spencer is in my zone and its giggles and pure joy all day. The new mission president is so good. Him and the Hermana are a bit... direct. But in the best of ways. They somehow convinced us to wake up 15 minutes earlier every day to start the work earlier. So yeah, momma and pops you know how hard the whole alarm thing is for me so it's true love. The conference was gold and we are applying it and I love it. 

(And after because we were in the city we got to stop off at a super market and buy some gluten free things so I am living the good life)
Rio Bueno
And zone conference means mail! 3 letters this week. All three gems, one from gma ball, Ange DeVore (woohoo best surprise ever) and one from the mama (with the baby pictures. so cute. ha-ha. here pictures are everything so send more.) Also, I think I say "send more" every week with what ever you do ha-ha so just keep being the best mom.

Eww, sorry this is gross but really it just explains the week. So it's so cold- sun is starting but it's still cold. There are frozen RATS, like big rats, in the street because it gets so cold they can’t walk to keep warm and just freeze. I told you its gross, but really. 
Rio Bueno
Ok, the other interesting experience of the week. We were visiting this inactive who things were going real well with. And were just chatting and stuff- just about to give her this assignment to come back to church when her pastor stops by (yeah in this moment we found out she’s visiting a different church and all these crazy things) but get this, it was so interesting. First, to just feel the different spirit, he is such a great man. And he is trying to help and lead, but it was just interesting to see and feel. Also, the fear in his eyes to talk to us- it was super interesting. A very pleasant lesson and all, but just interesting. 

I love being a missionary. And I love being a missionary here with Hermana Latham in Rio Bueno (aka beatifulville.)  But really, I am learning so much. Learning how to rely so much on Heavenly Father's strength and how to be courageous and fearless. I´ve got a way to go- but it's all good! 

Well family, this week I celebrated my 6 months here in Chile. I can’t believe it. Wowzers. What a wonderful, wet, happy, hard, best 6 months. 

I love you. 
Keep on keeping on. 

xoxo Hna ball; missionary, wedding planner and mud trudger.

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