Is there really anything more intense than life on a mission? Is there anything that prepares you better for the rest of your life? My answer is NO!
Let`s start with the best parts: This weekend we had a spiritual feast! Nicaragua had the immense privilege of receiving a visit from President Russell M. Nelson. On Saturday morning we had a combined mission conference with the North mission where he spoke to us. I can testify that he is a prophet of God! From the time he entered the room to the time the conference finished, there was such a strong, peaceful spirit. We each got to pass and shake his hand. I`m regretting leaving my notes at home, but the main part of his message was on how to increase our personal testimonies of foundational doctrine. He mentioned the topics of Atonement, sacrifice, tithing, temple, endowment, Abrahamic covenant, Jesus Christ, covenants, sacrament, and many other entries in the Guía para el Estudio de las Escrituras that should be our ¨core curriculum¨ for the mission in order to testify with clarity and deep understanding. Ah, I received so many answers to prayers and questions! The LOVE in that room was overwhelming. If everyone could even taste of that love for a minute, they would be so motivated to live the gospel! Did you hear that? Go love someone into being a little more obedient this week!
Apostles are just so optimistic and cheerful! They have a very sure confidence that everything´s going to work out, because they have strong faith in Christ. Everyone around them can feel it, too. I want to be more like that, instead of feeling destroyed when I encounter little setbacks in the work or in life!
On Sunday, President Nelson came to speak in Masaya. We got to go to the stake center to see and hear him. Another great talk about teaching our families correct principles. Unfortunately, none of our investigators came to church. We have been obedient and seen miracles this week. We found and set baptismal dates with five families this week... yet nobody came to church. Aaaahhh!!! It`s so hard to want someone`s happiness so badly and they won`t even be honest with you! Okay, I`m not going to elaborate on those negative feelings, because we all know that missions are hard and that complaining about it doesn`t make anything better.
Now, the downer of the week: I got a little case of Chikungunya starting on Tuesday. Don`t look it up, you`ll probably get freaked out, haha! It`s a disease that you get from mosquito bites, and it`s basically a plague in all of Central America. For me, it just meant that my ankles felt like they were broken for a few hours a day and my knees, wrists, fingers, and shoulders also hurt. I never got the fever, and the rash didn`t last long either. With ibuprofen, I was able to work normally all week. I gained a new respect for all people who suffer from arthritis!
I had a lightbulb moment about repentance this week. Why is it that we are so hard on ourselves when we have to repent? It is a very fundamental part of God´s plan for us, and He knows that we are going to have to repent every day for big or little things. Let`s think about Peter, or Alma, or Joseph Smith. All were powerful prophets. All had to repent of pretty big things, and had to repent repeatedly. So why should we feel terrible about ourselves every time we mess up? Yes, we must feel godly sorrow to repent, but we need not wallow in that! He expects us to put it in our past, apply the Atonement, and move on. I have set a goal to become a better repenter this week. Join me!
Oh, and I am LOVING the conference talks in the Ensign that Mom sent me! Read those words of the prophets and apply them to be made blissfully happy!
I LOVE YOU!
The hermanas of Zona Masaya on p-day
Much of Zona Masaya at a fancy lunch on p-day
Mire que fachenta! My change from the grocery store - 260 córdobas all in 10s