Monday, July 22, 2013

this moment is worth my whole mission

yeah, amanda told me about the whole aunt thing.  i kinda freaked out, and i still really can't believe it.  i love the pictures, and thanks for all the advice.  the mission is just super hard, and she has been in this sector for 5 months, o sea, her whole mission!  so that's been tough on her, and on me.  but we had zone conference this week, and after wards we talked to president, and told him about all the struggles we are having in our sector, he told us that for sure this change we would be separated.. hna leyva and i have talked about it, and on one side we are super sad, cause we are basically best friends, but on the other side we both realize that it is time for a change.  i have never been within sight and sound of someone for four moths doing the same exact thing every day. . .. ajaja.  we´ve had so much fun these three changes, and so many hard times.  a lot of tears. in fact, we might be able to fill a swimming pool with all the tears we have cried together, but together we have grown, and learned, and i wouldn't go back and change a thing.

on wednesday we had to go to providencia, where the temple is, but we didn't get to go inside . . bummer.  we call for permission, but president said only one time a year we are allowed to go. but, while we were there we found a subway and both bought foot longs in memory of the united states.  they were so so so good!

o, my emails these past couple weeks, haven't been so positive, sorry about that.  the mission is hard, and i just tell it like it is . . well, there is actually no way i can even tell you half of what happens in a week, but i try.  but, this week i had a few experiences that were worth my whole mission.  if i don't have another drop of measurable success for the rest of my mission it wont matter.  i will look back on my mission as a success because of these experiences.

the first happened on thursday after, but the story starts on wednesday.  on wednesday, hna leyva and i stopped by to visit the little girl that got baptized. we hadn't planned to teach her that day so we didn't have any plans, and we were just going to share a scripture.  as i was flipping through my scriptures, looking for something to share, the story of lehis dream came to my mind.  i didn't know why, but i turned to 1 nephi 8 and started explain the story to e*.  then we read together the words of lehi after he ate the fruit.  I explained that the fruit was the love of God, and that when someone tastes it then they have the desire to share it. then hna leyva asked her if she knew anyone that she could share the gospel with.  we had asked her this question before, but she didn't have anyone.  but this time she gave us 7 references!!! in missionary language that is a  miracle!  nothing short!!

well, we gave her, and her little sister some pass along card to share with their friends at school, and they were both so excited. then the next day, we passed by again to tell them that we were going to visit their friends, and they wanted to come with us.  so we all went together, with the neighbor cause we can't be alone with ninos, to visit the references.  we got to the first house and it was a house we had visited before, but the person who had answered the door wasn't interested at all.  hna leyva and i were about to tell them that we had already visited this place, but e* had already knocked the door.  a women who we had not met answered the door, she was the mom of the friend of e*, and hermana leyva did the normal contact routine.  We got a return appointment!  that was awesome and a milagor in itself, seeing that we have had little success lately, but that joy does not compare to what happened next.  right before we left, e* extended her hand through the doorway with the passalong card we had given her yesterday, and said "here, this is for you, you are invited to the church."  except she said it in spanish.  but i cannot even describe the joy that filled me as i saw her exercising her faith to share her testimony.  it was just a beautiful moment.  as we walked away i thought "that moment was worth my whole mission."

the next experience will take some background information.  So one of the many days we were knocking doors, we passed an old woman walking, and i felt like i should talk to her.  but i didn't!  stupid.  but about 30 minutes later, we passed by a house, and i saw her standing in the doorway.  again, i felt i should talk to her, and this time i didn't ignore it.  hna leyva must have had the same impression cause she turned and made her way to the woman.  we started talking to her and learned her name was E*.  when we asked if we could share a message with her, she immediately invited us in.  This was about 2 weeks ago.  we have been teaching her ever since.  not a ton, because she has a lot of health problems and is in the hospital a lot.  like every other day to do dialysis, cause she don't have kidneys.  she has also had breast cancer, and doesn't have one of her breasts, and she is diabetic.  but her spirit is just so pure.  she is 74, and just so special to me.  every time we teach her i can't stop smiling at all her little quarks, and just her sweet spirit.  i feel as if i have known her my whole life.  well, last sunday we invited her to church, and she couldn't come, but she accepted a baptism date, and told us that believes the church is true.  (we are not sure if she understands everything thought) well, this sunday we invited her to church, and she said she would come.  we told her we would pass by for her. so yesterday morning we arrived at her house at 9:40 and knocked on her door.  with all the lack of success we have had, and with all our difficulties we have had at getting people to church, i was expecting for her to answer the door and offer some excuse of why she couldn't go, or maybe she wouldn't even open the door at all.  
She opened the door wearing a beautiful coat and a pair of slacks.  she had even done her makeup, and looked as young as ever.  i cannot explain the joy i felt as we walked to the chapel with her. the chapel is upstairs, and it was a little hard for her to make it up, but when she sat down in the pew she leaned over to me and said "i didn't know if i would make it, but it was worth the sacrifice." i could not stop smiling the whole meeting.  then, at the end, one of the elders in our ward helped her walk back down the stairs, and as i walked behind her, listening to her chatter on and on to this elder, i was almost brought to tears by the beauty of the scene, and i thought once again, "this moment is worth my whole mission."  i don't know what will happen with her, and if she will get baptized, just cause she doesn't understand a lot, but i will never forget her for as long as i live.

We had three in church again!  it was a milagro!  one of them was a woman we started teaching this week.  she is the friend of hna m*, and is living in hna m*'s house. She is definitely prepared for the gospel, and our lessons with her are always really good, and just full of the spirit, but she is just scared to make the commitment of baptism.  and she is only home on the weekends, so it is hard to teach her.  so we don't know what will happen, cause changes are coming up, and we don't know if only one of us will change or if we both will change.

we don't have a lot of investigators, both the ones we do have are sincere, which is hard to find here in chile. . . . well, in this sector.

some other news, as i said, i am making a wedding cake and hermana leyva is decorating it.  so we ate lunch before email cause we know that we will be eating cake all after.  also, on thursday i make undercooked, burnt lasagna.  how is that possible? i don't know.  but i did it.  still we ate it, and the flavor was good.  but that was my week, and hermana leyva did get the shoes.  they fit!  and she says thanks.  also, for my b day package, i would love a little video from you all.  we have dvd players. and we can still use backpacks. .  . so that's awesome!  thanks for everything, sorry my typing is so bad, my fingers are about to freeze off!!  I love you all, have an amazing week!

con amor, hna Ostler

ps. this keyboard is super terrible, the shift doesn't work, and i don't know how to uncenter the format. .. sorry

Lemon Pie we made

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