Monday, July 7, 2014

Praying Again

July 7, 2014

It was hard to believe that, yet again, I found myself with that same prayer in my heart.. “PLEASE, Heavenly Father” I cried out in my heart as the Motokar sped from one hospital to the other. “Please just let me finish my mission. That’s all I want, is to serve you. I don’t have much time left. Please help me do it. I know it won’t be easy. I know they want to put a big cast on me and that it will look ridiculous and it will hurt. That’s okay. It’s fine. I’ll keep working. I’ll limp all over the Amazon Jungle if I need to. Just please, PLEASE let me stay here.”

It had been one of those really awkward moments. The doctor said that 4 people was too many, so our companions had to wait outside and me and my District Leader (Elder Quiroga, the poor guy just met me three weeks ago!) went in. We probably looked like a married couple as we sat there together waiting to see what came out on the ultrasound. The Doc explained a few things to us and Elder Q looked more nervous than me. I asked the Doctor if it was really that bad, and he got all serious and said “Look, Señorita, you’re really lucky that you didn’t shatter your leg.”

I was scared to ask him the question that was haunting me, but I got the courage up and let it out. “Will I every be able to run again?” I asked. His answer wasn’t too assuring. When the Motokar stopped at the second Hospital, I felt at peace. Somehow, I knew everything was going to be okay. This Doctor’s second opinion was better. He told me that I should rest for a couple weeks (the first Doctor gave me rest for four months), but if I really wanted to keep working like normal I could as long as I can handle the pain, and when I get home I’ll be able to rest up a little better and in just a few short months, I could even start running again.

I didn’t hurt myself again, but remember that whole sewer episode? Well, the blood collections inside of my leg started to hurt this week and I had a fever, so I had to go back to the hospital and they found a few new things. A small infection, tendonitis, some ligaments out of place or something like that, etc.

The doctor pointed out a few things in my knee that they couldn’t find in Iquitos and asked “Doesn’t that hurt you?” I told him it only hurts when I run or play soccer. He looked at me like I was an idiot. “You’ve been running and playing soccer with your leg like this?? Are you crazy? You got a little bit better and all of the sudden thought that you can play in the World Cup?” My District Leader looked at me and said, very sternly, “You will NEVER play soccer or run again in your mission.” Okay, point taken. Anyway, nothing serious. Just more pills and a brace that goes from my ankle almost to my waist, so you can imagine that I look super cool! But, I am out proselyting like normal.

I just felt stupid. Not just because I’ve been playing soccer and such, but because I shouldn’t have ever fallen. I was sick that day. Not sick, sick but, you know, panic attacks and such. My Zone Leaders told me I could rest that day and that it wouldn’t be a good idea to go walk in the rain while I was so dizzy. I didn’t care. I didn’t listen. I didn’t want to lose three hours of work time. Because of that, I had two weeks of bed rest, three weeks of crutches, and a month and a half later, I’m still not better! I just need to be smarter!

Other than with the leg, I was able to learn a lot this week. The first lesson I learned was about obedience and honestly. Two weeks ago, we had Zone Conference and a lot of new rules were made. Last Monday, our Zone planned to break just about every new rule. We decided that the rules didn’t apply until July, and that we were still in June. It wasn’t right. The next day, I felt really strongly that I needed to call President and tell him what had happened. I pushed the thought aside, not wanting to be a “Tattle Tale.” Besides, I thought. I didn’t plan the activity. I didn’t do anything wrong, I was just following the Zone Leaders.

All of the stuff we did (being in shorts and T-shirts, the zone going places together, everyone going to some Elders´ house to hang out, ending at 5, Elders and Sisters being together, etc) was just fine two weeks ago, so why worry? The impression to call was even stronger. I didn’t want to do it, but then I remembered how, after Zone Conference, Hermana Gomez pulled me aside and told me about something very touching that President and said to her about me. The impression was clear. Deep down, I knew that President would find out one way or another, and how would he feel if someone else told him about it. He’d know that I was there and that I didn’t fess up, especially after what he said about me.

That phone had never felt so heavy in my hand. When the phone started ringing, I looked at my companion and said “Wait! What am I doing? Is it too late to hang up??” He answered and asked how I was and we talked for a second and then I explained to him why I was calling. He didn’t even get mad at me for having been there. He thanked me for telling him and then said “Hermana Simonson, I hope you know how much I trust you. You’ve always been very special to us and a great example of a righteous missionary.”

I worried about the consequences, but in the end, things worked out great. President changed some of the rules back to how they were before Zone Conference. No one but him found out that I had called and everything went back to normal, but I gained more of my President’s trust. Win-Win situation. Even when it is hard, honesty really is the best policy!

Another cool experience happened to us this week with that family I told you about where the little boy testified to the whole family about the Book of Mormon. They also have a 14 year old son, but he is a bit of a lost soul. He told us he doesn’t believe in God and doesn’t like the Bible and things like that. But, we’ve seen a few subtle changes in him ever since we started teaching. This week, we somehow convinced him to say the closing prayer. He resisted at first, but finally accepted and started praying.

At one point in his prayer, his voice shook and he stopped talking for what seemed like a long time. He started talking again but couldn’t get himself together because he was crying so much asking that the Lord would bless the poor and thanking God for his family. It was wonderful to see how the Lord touched his heart. It also gave me hope when I got home that night and took my nametag off and looked at the picture on the other side and remembered some other hearts that I am praying will be touched in some moment. I know that the Lord can do it with anybody. Heck, he even did it with me.

Hermana Simonson

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