March 31, 2014
It was a week of miracles! Actually, this last month has been a whole process of miracles as we worked with the family that got Baptized . We rarely get references from our ward, but a while back the Young Men´s President informed us that he went looking for some inactive young men, and showed up at the wrong house. He apologized for bugging them and said “Well, maybe I am here for a reason. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and I want to invite you to my church.” The wife of the family was in church the following .
We started visiting them and she accepted Baptism in the first lesson, but her husband (that is not technically her husband because they are not married but they all just say husband and wife anyway) was really hard hearted and would not accept marriage or Baptism and said that he wouldn’t change his life just because two little girls were visiting them. In one lesson, the wife, Aided, just burst into tears and said “Hermana, I FEEL it. I feel it and he doesn’t. He doesn’t feel anything.” It broke my heart. We couldn’t do anything for her if the husband wouldn’t budge.
One day, we showed up at the house and he said “Hermanas, I did what you said. I prayed. I know it’s true. You can Baptize me.” It was amazing. So amazing. But, we did not realize how hard it was going to be. He didn’t have an ID Card, which makes getting the marriage papers EXTREMELY difficult. And, he doesn’t have ANY money, so paying for their marriage rights was going to be really hard.
A few weeks ago, when we tried to talk to the Ward Council for help, they told us they were too busy to help us. I wanted to die. Elder Muñoz looked at me and started speaking in English “APRIL Five, just you Baptize them on April five. Don’t push it for this month just to meet you goal.” As we left the church he looked at me and said “Why are you so sure about this day, it will be impossible.” I got a little frustrated and promised him that the date we had chosen had NOTHING to do with meeting a goal and that we wanted to move the date back but the Spirit was really strong telling us that they needed to be Baptized on this day. “I NEVER set dates just for the numbers” I promised him, and he decided to believe me.
The Zone Leaders got really excited and started saying that if we pull it off we will be setting a record for baptisms. I tried to tell them we don’t care about the record and we don’t want to hear more about it. Then, they got suspicious and thought that they didn’t believe that we could be Baptizing so many people and thought the people weren’t actually dedicated. So, they set up a test.
They told the family that they needed to be at the Chapel that was furtherest away from there house at a certain time to sign papers. This sweet little family with absolutely nothing got permission to leave the job they just got, borrow money to pay for the Motokar, and showed up at the Church, completely by themselves. Was I super mad when I found out about the “test”? Yes. Extremely. But, they passed. And the Zone Leaders just looked at us at said “Okay, we believe you. We get it. You can Baptize them.”
In their Baptismal Interview, the wife cried and told the Zone Leaders that when she wanted to know if this was what she was supposed to do, she dreamed that she was standing by a river, and that I came up to her in a canoe and stepped out and was sparkling with light and a voice told her that this was the angel God had sent her….just a funny side note. These people and their dreams.
It was SO hard to get things done. We put together an activity to raise the money and the day of the activity, the skies were completely black. Peruvians DO NOT leave their houses when there is rain. I was ready to break. We sat in the plaza waiting and I just lost it and looked up and the skies and broke into English. “Why???” I shouted. “Why today why now???” I remember just staring at the sky and trying to command the clouds to move (worth a shot).
I just remembered Aided’s crying face when she thought they weren’t going to be able to get married and I thought of all of my love for her and for the family and I was completely broken down. I kid you not, in that moment, sun started to shine on the Plaza, it got brighter and brighter within a matter of minutes and it NEVER rained.
The Spirit spoke so firmly “I TOLD you that this family was to be Baptized this week. Why couldn’t you just trust me? I did the miracle with the husband’s heart. I did the miracle with the ID Card. I did the miracle with the papers. I did the miracle with the “test”. Why couldn’t you trust me for one miracle more?”
We needed to get 120 soles for the wedding, wanna know how many we got? 121. No joke. When we showed up to the activity, we came down the hill and saw a whole group of white shirts sitting there. I wanted to cry. The WHOLE zone came (other than they zone leaders.). Their love and support was amazing.
Then, , Aided and Angel were Married and Baptized, and yesterday they were confirmed members of the Church of Jesus Christ. I couldn’t believe it. When the Lord tells us we need to do something and when we need to do it, it seems impossible. But He will always help us. He will touch the hearts, find the papers, and even stop the rain.
I love this Gospel. I love my Heavenly Father. I love serving His children in this amazing place that, for me, is sacred ground.