Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Beautiful Pointsettia

Dearest Family,

Really though, poinsettias are thrown around like weeds here. They have these huge plants of them everywhere. The cream colored ones too. They are gorgeous! The dog was way ugly so we had to take a picture. I can’t believe summer is already coming to an end there. We have only a few more weeks of winter and then it’s back to the scorching unbearable heat.
It has been a week of many many miracles here in Ñemby. A few weeks ago we started teaching a woman who has been inactive for ten years. She is the mother of our former ward mission leader. From the moment that we taught her about the Restoration again, she has helped us find many new people to teach and has come back to church. We continued teaching her the regular lessons to help her stay active in the church and this week, as we were teaching her Lesson 3 (The Gospel of Jesus Christ), and she said that she didn’t think she had been confirmed so we called the secretary and found out that she hadn’t been confirmed and since it was ten years ago, she needed to be baptized again. She accepted baptism again, but as we did the interview, we found out that she had had some serious sins from before. She was so sad as she told us about. We have visited her every day and her testimony is growing. We taught her about repentance and bore our testimonies. She seems a little downcast though and she didn’t come to church yesterday. We have gone every day to her house and really have been praying to know how to help her. I honestly love her so much !. We are really trying to follow the Spirit and answer her doubts. It made me think a lot about our Savior. The sins of only a few weigh on me heavily and I am so saddened for them. My own sins are burdensome enough. I cannot comprehend what Christ suffered for us, but I love Him and am so grateful for His love for us and obedience to the Father.
Things are great with my companion. She is ever an example to me of faith, patience, diligence, and love. I love her and we are prepared to fight for every one of our investigators.

I love you all!!


Monday, July 19, 2010

Getting colder and no shoes!

Dear Family and Friends:
This week was FREEZING! and I thought that I was going to be fine with shoes until I come home, but all at once, my shoes came undone. With the rain, cold, and holes in my shoes, the Lord really tested my diligence. Speaking of which, my shoes are not going to last me another 5 months in Paraguay. I´m so sorry to ask, but do you think you could send me another pair? My feet will be forever grateful. But it honestly made me think about the pioneers and the sacrifices that they made as they crossed the plains. Our wet muddy feet are not even close to the bare-footed tracks that they left in the snow. I´m grateful the appreciation that this experience gave me, even though I did complain a little at first. I´m grateful for my companion and her courage and ever-diligent example. Bueno. Enough about shoes!

Not a ton has happened in the last couple of days. We have some investigators right now that are great. I think I told you about Veronica. She is the girl that we contacted in the street who said she didn´t believe in God. I told her that I knew she believed in God and that He loves her. She didn´t say much. The next day we were looking for someone else an knocked her door. She is progressing along and LOVING the Book of Mormon. It has been really cool for me.

I was reading Mark chapter 1 yesterday and it says that they were astounded by Christ´s words because He taught as one having authority and not as the scribes. I honestly hope that as we testify and teach that we can do so as those having authority, not just as another one of the "scribes" of today. There are so many religious groups so we really have to stand out and use the Spirit. That is my goal for this week and for my mission. I am really trying to be a better teacher and help my investigators come unto Christ.
I just want you to know how grateful I am for all of you and how much I love you.

Have a wonderful week!!!

Hermana Rachel

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Freezing Cold...

Dear Family,

Whoever said it doesn’t get cold in Paraguay lied. It is 3 degrees (Celsius) with humidity so we are pretty bundled up (as you can see from the pictures). It has been a great week though and I hope you are enjoying that nice sunny weather in Utah...or wherever you guys are. Thanks for the e-mails. I love you all and always love hearing from you. It has been a great week and a half here in Ñemby! I get to stay here with Hermana Quartino which makes me very happy! I absolutely love this area and am excited to have at least another 6 weeks here. I hope you like the pictures! The one with the braid in my hair is from this morning, the rest are from this Tuesday and our district meeting. Hope you enjoy! And yes, that is my machete (crocodile model, the 2010 edition) and yes, I use it often. I am developing quite a lovely callous on my pointer finger. Do you think I am going to have a problem bringing it home on the airplane? I hope not.

We had a few disappointments this week, as always, but we are not discouraged. Each new change gives me more ánimo and motivation. I know that we will continue to see more miracles as we are obedient and work hard. I am prepared to do so otra vez. We had interviews with President Callan this week and we both realized how quickly our time here in Paraguay is passing. I honestly couldn’t believe it! We both got kind of teary thinking about how much the Lord has blessed us in this short time in Paraguay. We are so indebted to Him for all that He gives us. Trying to "repay" Him by keeping the commandments doesn’t work because He just blesses us more. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for giving me this opportunity.

We are still trying to teach a larger quantity and greater quality of lessons. We froze a little bit, but were able to teach a few new people who seem great.

I love you all more than I can explain. I want Katie to know too that I love her and am so excited for her to be a member of our family. I have never seen a happier Kris, not even on opening a Wii on Christmas morning. I fully support you two and can´t wait to get to know you better! All my love also to the Gilbert´s, Grandmas, Grandpas, Aunts, Uncles, etc.


Hermana Rae