May 26, 2014
¡Hola mi familia querida!
So this week as been ABSOLUTELY CRAZY! So Wednesday was the day of Antonio´s interview for his baptism. We went over to their house for lunch (Hna. Vasquez always makes the best lunches) and then we all were going to go over to the capilla. But I guess the night before Antonio was talking to his mom and his mom was still like don´t get married, Antonio it´s going to make me mad. And Antonio LOVES his mom and so when we arrived he was having doubts again. A few days earlier we´d had an awesome lesson with him that cleared up these doubts and yet here they were again. So we had no clue what was going to happen. We asked how he was feeling and he said he didn´t know but he knew baptism was important so he was like I just need to go through with it. This really didn´t give us much assurance so we were just like ok he can do the interview but if he´s not ready, he´s not ready, we´re not going to pressure or anything. I felt really bad because you could just see that he was so conflicted in his mind because of the stuff his mom was telling him. But he had the interview and it went well. Then the next day we called Hna. Vasques to check up with how he was doing and you´ll never guess what happened! His mom called him again last night and was like actually if you want to get married, get married, I want you to be happy, I won´t be mad. WHAT??????? I about fell out of my chair. I have no clue what changed her mind, but I have a good idea of WHO changed her mind. It just goes to show that what´s important to us is important to the Lord. When we push forward with the things we know or even just feel are right, even when it´s hard, even when the people we love tell us not to, the blessings really do come. I´m so glad that Antonio could see and experience this right before his baptism. I still am in a little disbelief. You just have to shake your head sometimes. The hand of the Lord may be silent, but it´s not invisible.
So Friday was the wedding. It was a simple thing in the civil registro. We went over before and I straightened Libertad´s hair and my comp did her makeup so she would feel special. You could tell that they were REALLY happy!
Then Sunday after church he was baptized!!!!!!! We went over the night before so he could try on his baptism pants and when we were just talking to him, he got really emotional. He's so humble and sweet and you can just see he has this strong desire to follow Christ. All he could just say to us was ¨Gracias. Gracias¨ This day also happened to be my birthday and to be honest, those two words are the greatest birthday gift I have ever received (sorry mom, but the socks are a close second! ;) ) It was just one of those special moments when you realize how amazing and important the gospel is. That this work really is important. That people really do NEED this in their lives. The countenance of Antonio has changed since we first met him. There´s just more light in his face. Antonio is such a perfect example of someone who´s life was good and happy before he knew the gospel, he always had faith but now with it he sees that the whole time he really was missing something that he didn´t even realize he was missing. He sees now that there is so much more good that he can have. The gospel is so real. And it really does change lives for the better.
His baptism was beautiful. The gospel never ceases to amaze me. I mean we´ve been working for months for him to get here. We needed him to attend church, to get married, all the lessons. It was months of work for 2 seconds underwater. It almost doesn´t sound worth it right? Ha. Wrong. Every second, every stuttered congregated Spanish verb, every pleading prayer from the bathroom floor, is MORE than worth it. These people are more than people, they´re children of God who just need to be reminded of their divine worth and destiny. And when that remembrance comes, lives change and families are strengthened.
Speaking of families, the family that was at church last week that heard my talk.... We met with them again Wednesday night to get their answer. I don´t remember what I told you last week but the quick rundown is that we met with them Sunday night and they we interested in baptism but they wanted to be sure so they were going to pray as a family and let us know their answer Wednesday. THEY`RE GOING TO GET BAPTIZED NEXT SUNDAY!! They are golden. They really are some of God´s elect. So humble and so willing with strong testimonies. I love them so much.
Also we found a menos activo familia who have a daughter Katalina who isn´t a member. But the family has been coming to church the past two weeks, (it was their first time in 11 years!) And we´ve also committed Katalina to baptism on the 1st. So if everything goes to plan, we should have 4 more baptisms next week. I really hope everything works out because these people are all so special and I love them so much!!
We also had a tour of our capilla yesterday. It was great. We had investigators come and all the people who spoke and explained things did a wonderful job!
My birthday was really good too!!! Antonio, Libertad, and Hna. Vasquez called me in the morning and all sang and wished me happy birthday which I though was super sweet. We had a district meeting that day and my district surprised me with a cake and everyone sang. Then we went to Hna. Sonia, the lady who let us skype at her house, for lunch and she had a HUGE cake for me too! it was coconut and manjar and SUPER delicious! I can´t believe I´m 20. Thank you so much for the socks, mom! I felt just like Harry Potter opening up the gift on my bed, only Harry wishes he had socks as beautiful as those! I can´t wait to wear them!!! I also realized I´ve now celebrated my birthday on 3 different continents, how cool is that?!
I hope you all have a wonderful memorial day! I love you!
Con todo el amor en mi corazón,