Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Stronger and stronger every day...

¨We follow Christ because we love Him.¨ -Elder Gonzalez (of the 70.)

These last 3 months have been the hardest of my mission. But I have figured a lot out. And I have found more and more who Christ is. 

You can say you love someone or know them, when you can say things about them. What they like, what makes them happy, how they are, etc. And I have been trying to figure that out about Christ, so that I can always stay, stronger and stronger every time that I follow Him because I truly love Him. 

These last months I really haven´t been able to rely on anyone. I have had to be the strong one, always. With the members, my companion and the girls for whom I am responsible. And it’s hard to always be strong. This week I had a really spiritual experience with my dear mission president in our interviews. But sometimes its rough to have the deep good things because they are accompanied with the deep hard things. I love being a missionary so much. I love having my name badge with our families name and with His name. Literally knowing I have been set apart by His power to act in His name. 

But sometimes being a missionary is a very lonely thing. I really wouldn´t change it. I am just learning how to learn from it. 

It was one of those weeks. Where I was always with people and running around and it was so good. But it’s been a bit lonely for a while. And this morning I think I figured out the reason why.  I believe He is preparing me for this Holy week. Here in Puerto Cisnes I have no other option but to pray so much, to study about the atonement- His suffering, His death and His resurrection and prepare to receive love from General Conference.

Like I said, this week we had interviews. Friday was crazy. We were on the bus for 8 hours- 4 hours there, a quick and so solid interview and a yummy snack with the missionaries. 

The interviews were awesome because we had one little one with our mission president and our companions. We went over what’s going down in Puerto Cisnes and a made plan. He gave us the advice to give the branch a spiritual experience to get them involved. 

So I went into branch council with a very humble heart. We explained about our interview with president and his advice and simply explained what we are doing, isn´t working. We are no seeing progress, no one is in church and there is nothing. Then we got a little real with them. It was a wonderful meeting. We made a new plan on how the members can be more involved. We also will be fasting together as leaders for success and specifically for us to find families. 

I also bore testimony of the priesthood. I explained how we don´t have Elder missionaries here who can receive revelation for us. I couldn’t help but cry just a little thinking about dad and my companions only priesthood holder, he brother.  And looking at Hermano Coronado and president Ancamil, the two most influential priesthood leaders of any of my wards in my mission and explaining simply... that we had them. That we needed them and their worthiness to receive revelation for us. 

I am so happy. While in interviews, President Obeso, my dear friend, explained that he knows what is going on here. But that there is more work I need to do- and even though we find out cambios next week he explained that I would be staying here in Puerto Cisnes.

I am so, so happy. If you don’t know I love this branch. But it also was one of those "ok, just breathe in and think what we are going to do now" moments. I was hoping for an area where I could work with lots of progressing people. But it looks like I am just going to have to make Puerto Cisnes that area! 

On our bus ride home we were almost in an accident. Our bus went to pass another on a hill and a truck was coming towards us- it was on my side of the window and it was one of those scary experiences where I just closed my eyes, braced myself and leaned out of the way. I don´t know what happened, ha-ah I had my eyes closed. But we were all good. Right after I looked at my companion and we both gave one of those little nervous laughs and breathed out. 

But then I got kind of quite in the bus and I couldn´t help but think about what if.. You know what if something had happened. And honestly I felt so much peace in that minute. One of those deep peaces from Heavenly Father. Just hours before, I had my interview with president where I was able to be very real with him and I also was able to finally receive my temple recommend. (I haven´t had one for months now- we haven't met with him since October.) But I have it! And even though I have hours in airplane to the closest temple I know I am worthy to enter. And I thought about that in the bus- how I am worthy! And how grateful I am for the priesthood and the Book of Mormon and temples and my mission and the branch here and everything wonderful. 

We were able to then finish the bus ride and made it in time for us to run to a ward activity. It was such a fun, spiritual crazy day. Up at 4:30, the 8 hours in bus, the interviews, the activity and lots of bus time to think. But we had one investigator in the activity! For the first time since Hermana O! So good. 

This week we also had a couple service gems. We had F- hah the cute grandma from the photos last week. We visited her and as every time we scream a hymn and full on scream a prayer so she can hear. Ha-ha best. 

We also were able to help one of our investigators break some big sticks and branches for her fire- then she made us the humblest and yummiest little dinner! Such a nice evening. 
Then ok, did you see the picture of the two little kids with the bikes? She is so cute. She calls me auntie (its a Chilean thing I love.) and I call her my niece. But we were walking and there was the big hill and she’s ¨auntie can you help us. My brother’s bike is too big. ¨ So I grabbed his bike and we made our way down and up the other side. My companion is the best and snagged a picture. But how cute are they. The thing is here the parents may not listen to me but I am a best friend with all the kids in the street. :) 

I have to run. But I love you! I am so happy for this last week because I learned so much- and I’m happier because I know this week is a missionaries dream! Have a happy Easter and conference weekend! 

xoxo Hna Ball

 When I say it rains here, this is what I mean

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