Monday, August 26, 2013

Suffer The Children to Come to Me

August 26, 2013

Wow, the time just goes by so fast! Here I am on another P-day and it feels like I just wrote you guys yesterday. I had to look back through my planner to figure out what really happened this week. Well, I'll start with the great stuff. If I were an Elder, I'd say, "I dunked number eight this week!" Well, I'm not an Elder, so I'll just say that I had the wonderful opportunity of seeing another soul be brought to Christ through Baptism this week. :) Her name is Teresita, but we call her "Tender Mercy." She is such a sweetheart and always makes our day. When we showed up at her Baptism she basically danced over to us. I got to give a talk at her Baptism and it was all so beautiful. Her mom has been inactive for along time but recently starting going to church again, and Teresita starting going with her and had already prayed to know it was true before we got called in. So beautiful.

Other than that, I got fleas for the SECOND time, so that's super fun. I also got to take a pill whose name literally translated means "The Bomb" and it does just what you might imagine it does because here in the Jungle it's not about avoiding the Parasites, it's about killing the ones that are probably already in your body. We took the pills together as a zone....I guess you can call it bonding?

The thing that has really won me over this week has been the children. We've been teaching this family that lives on a corner and whenever we show up at their house, all of the kids on the street coming running over screaming "Las Hermanas Las Hermanas!" They all come to every lesson with their booklets that we've given them and they just look up at us with the most innocent eyes. It's adorable. Tania, Edwin's wife, started bringing them to church and activities the last couple weeks. You can bet that we already contacted their families and are trying to prepare their parents for Marriage and the whole family for Baptism. :)

It's so surreal to see the effect that I can really have on these kids. We were teaching this one family and this little girl was a little hyper and she was spinning around saying "Pickle, pickle, pickle." I didn't know if I should laugh or cry. She was playing a game that I made up to use in Family Home Evenings when I first got here and my Spanish vocabulary wasn't big enough to explain a real game. It turned out to be a hit and now the first time that I ever meet this girl she's playing my little game. Kids sure know how to spread things! I guess I'll at least know that I left one good thing here in Shilcayo. :)

On top of all of this, I was asked to teach Primary this week and it was a blast. We were teaching about missionary working and my companion asked what a missionary does and they didn't say anything so she asked what Hermana Simonson does everyday and they all screamed "PICKLE!" and after they started saying "She's a model!!! She's a model!!" That gave me a good laugh. She asked what else I do and they said, "She makes funny jokes!" It was hilarious. 

I also got to give a talk (yes, that does happen all the time) and I was running out of last minute talk ideas, so I shared a little bit about what we can learn from children. I love how humble and happy and energetic they are. I now truly understand why Jesus taught, "Suffer the children to come to me." They really are the kingdom of Heaven.

Well, I didn't get transferred this time, so I've got at least six more weeks here with this companion in this same zone in this same branch. Elder Burleson will be heading out and that has made me super sad, he's been a great District Leader and we've really enjoyed the rare novelty of having two Americans in the same District.

After they announced the changes today, he pulled me aside and asked if I was okay. "I'm SO sorry to leave you here, I did not see this coming. Be patient, okay? You’re not going to die. Hang in there."

I know I can press forward. It's hard right now.  It's really hard. But it is so worth it. It feels worth it every time I watch a Baptism, give a talk, or watch little random kids in the streets spinning around and shouting "Pickle." I know they kept me where I'm at for a reason and I'll just keep pushing forward. I'm sure I would have been even sadder to leave than if I had stayed! :)

I love you so much!  Have a great week!!!!

Teresita's Baptism! It was a group Baptism with the Elders in Partido Alto. Super Special.

Our District riding in style in our Branch President's Motokar. That's how we do it.

I made french toast for the District this morning and they couldn't have been happier.
We didn't realize it would be our last day together as a District!

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