May 25, 2015
I opened up my email and it was loaded with a thousand emails!! I literally thought someone died or something.. and then I realized that something did. My childhood. I`m officially an adult! AH!! It`s awesome! I can legally say no to alcohol now! Haha, but seriously, thank you so much to everyone who sent me birthday wishes!! I feel super special :)
My week here was awesome awesome awesome!!! Everyday is full of miracles. It kind of weirds me out sometimes haha not going to lie, but I just think it`s so amazing that Heavenly Father can focus in on every detail in every life as if He has all the time in the world for every single person. He really does have all the time in the world and is willing to do whatever he needs to, no matter how long it takes. I feel like life on Earth is like a very elaborately stitched blanket, with threads weaving in and out of each other in a manner that almost seems to not make sense when looked at up close but as you step back it makes the most beautiful pattern.
So first, we find ourselves with this lady from Cuba. She comes to us and is crying and we`re like what happened?? And she says nothing, I`m fine, I just moved here from Cuba a few months ago and I just miss my family that`s all. Turns out she was studying with the Jehovah Witnesses in Cuba and thought that we were them. Dang it. But it`s fine, we cleared it up and she said that another day she would like to talk to us. So, then we went to our appointment, but the lady wasn`t there! So we walk back up the street and we find ourselves again with the Cuban lady and she comes over and she says, actually I have time now, can we talk. So we talk and we end up teaching her the Restoration on the street! She was super interested and accepted a Book of Mormon and said she is going to pray!! Just like that. Our two citas that we had had fell through and thanks to that we found ourselves with her again, a little later, when she was ready to listen! Timing is everything. Looking back at it I can see how God was working to give this lady, who`s far from home and feeling alone, a chance to learn about Jesus Christ and find comfort in Him and His gospel.
Also, we had a lesson with our investigador, Tito on Tuesday. He`d been having doubts about Jose Smith and if he was a prophet or not. So I had left with him my triple so he could read Jose Smith history. We got there and he had read a little and said that he had prayed but still wasn`t sure. We talked about baptism and all that but it always came back to him saying that he wasn`t sure and that he wanted more time because he needed more knowledge and had to do more research. So I was just thinking look, obviously he hasn`t received an answer that these things are true so he hasn`t felt the spirit testify that these things are true. Once you feel the spirit there is just no denying it. I was thinking in the promise at the end of the Book of Mormon, that if you pray with true intention you WILL receive an answer. Not maybe you`ll get one, but you will get one. I know that is a true promise. I trust in that promise. So I was like look, how about we kneel down, right here right now, and you say a prayer and you just ask God if Jose Smith was a prophet and if the Book of Mormon is true? Yeah? And Tito was like ok. So we did it and he said a very simple but sweet prayer. He asked if the Book of Mormon is true and if Jose Smith restored the church. Super simple. Not one pretty word or anything. Boom. And as he closed his prayer, he was crying. He felt the spirit. That promise at the end of the Book of Mormon, that promise that has been tried and tried and fulfilled time and time again has once again felt strong. I can`t even begin to describe how strong the spirit was in the room. He knew that it all was true, even if he didn`t know everything or understand everything perfectly. He just knew in his heart. He stood up and reached out to shake my hand and said thank you. So we sit back at the table and after a little bit more of silence, I asked him, what God was telling him right then. And Tito goes, arrepiéntete y bautìzate. (repent and get baptized). So I asked him how he was with Sunday and he said that Sunday would be great! hahahaha just like that!!!! Literally 10 minutes earlier he was saying that Sunday was too soon and now he was like yes please, Sunday! Literally as a missionary, I feel like I do absolutely nothing. Because I don`t. The spirit is so powerful. The Lord really does His own work. I`m just so grateful for the opportunity that I have to watch it all go down. I feel like I have front row seats to the greatest show in the world.
So Tito passed his interview and was baptized yesterday! On my birthday!! Best birthday yet????? That would be a full hearted ¡¡SÍ!!
I remember learning in my Anthropology class that in other Indian cultures on ones birthday they give gifts to everyone, instead of others giving gifts to them. I always thought that was really interesting and I was thinking this past week, what gift could I give to Heavenly Father for my birthday? Well, I wish I could say that I gave him a baptism, but even that wasn`t me. But I hope that through the baptism and every lesson that we teach and every contact that I do and every scripture that I share, He knows the great deep love that I have for Him and for Jesus Christ. I know that really there is nothing that I can even give them, only my will. And I hope that They know that They already have all of it. I am so grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ. I am so grateful for the Book of Mormon. I am so grateful for the lessons I am learning and for the miracles that I am seeing. I know that God lives, I know that He loves us, and I know that He works endlessly, night and day so that every one of His children can have the opportunity to have not only happiness in this life but endless joy in the eternities. I hope I can keep progressing and everyday for the rest of my life become a little bit more and more like my Savior.
The baptism was super super beautiful! Tito`s mom who is already a member was crying through out the whole thing! At the end, we asked Tito if he wanted to share his testimony and he said YES! Which was awesome because usually they say no because they`re still kinda shy but he stood up afterward and just expressed pure gratitude. It was so sweet. And then afterward, he told us that we now have to teach his wife and daughter! The fact that they came to the baptism is awesome because Tito has been living with his mom because of problems in the marriage, but he just wants to be with his family and I hope that the gospel will be able to help them! We`ll see, we have a family home evening with the whole family tonight :)
Then afterwards for my birthday we ate Papa Johns pizza with a family with a chocolate cake! SOOO GOOD! I felt like I was at home. Then we went over to the Bishop's house in the night who said he wanted to talk to us about some stuff and they surprised me with PANCAKES!!!! Hahaha I`ve never blown out candles from a stack of pancakes, but it was awesome!!! There was even American maple syrup! Did I score or what????? So all in all it was a really great awesome day! Most people on their 21st birthday go out and party all night long, but I wouldn`t trade my experience here in Chile for the world. I know that my party will continue with these people in the celestial kingdom :) Alma 50:16.
Well I`ve ran out of time! So until next week...
I love you all so much!!!!!!!
Con todo el amor de mi corazón,
Hermana Evans (21)
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