Monday, December 30, 2013

The greatest gifts

Dear familia,

Wow, Skype . .  BACAN! Loved it!  In the moment when the whole familia is together there is so much to be said and so much to be shared, but the words to express feelings that are carried in the heart are hard to find, and at the end of forty minutes we are still searching, so in the end nothing is really said, but more is shared through the tear filled eyes and the ring of laughter, and through the simple words of "I love you" we say goodbye for 5 more months.  You guys are really just the greatest and I loved every obnoxious second we had.

This Christmas, as I said, was one of the most spiritual and memorable Christmases I have experienced in my short 21 years of Christmas experiences.  My Christmases have slowly been changing from receiving to giving, over the years-  It is a process we all go through. What changed this year was not a ratio in which I gave more than I received, but rather in what manner of gifts were received and what manner of gifts were given.

Every year the question is asked, "what can I give?"  After the question runs through our mind, we start to think of the latest and the greatest.  Things that can be bought to give to our loved ones.  We think of the prices, we think of the wrapping and the bows.  We run to the store time and time again, searching for the perfect gift.  But this Christmas there were no stores, there was no wrapping, no bows, and no calculating the price.  This Christmas for me changed from what I could give from a store to what can I give from myself.  Instead of searching through the aisle and the shelves for the perfect gift, I walked the streets, searching for the person who needed the perfect gift.  And this gift I talk of is not one that is bought in a store, but it is one that comes from inside.  This Christmas I gave of myself.

As a representative of Jesus Christ, I knocked doors, looking for the hands that drooped, looking for those who needed help, searching for those who needed Jesus.  And When I found them, I only shared the light that is inside.  Sometimes that was a simple hug to an old friend who is dying of cancer and doesn't even know it.  And another time it was a Christmas song to a woman who recently lost a husband.  Then there was another who needed a bag of soap, shampoo, and a box of chocolate cereal for her kids, cause they had none in the house.

When Christ was on the earth what did He give?
He gave himself.  So as his representative this year I tried to do the same, and this Christmas will be one that I never forget.

The greatest gifts I received this Christmas were the hug from a little girl who hadn't tasted chocolate cereal in who knows how long, the tears of a women who just needed a Christmas song, and the smile of an old friend.  Then of course, there was the amazing skype session. My companion had to split her time.  That broke my heart.  While, at the same time, it made me so grateful that I could talk to ALL my family in 3 parts of the world at the same time.  It was great, and I’m happy that you all enjoyed your Christmas and that my package got to you!  Yeah!  I hope you enjoyed the homemade gifts.

Lets see, what else for this week? It is really really hot!  But my comp and I try to keep a good attitude even when we are swimming in our own sweat.  We found a mother and son this week who are awesome!  They have potential to progress.  On Sunday we passed by our investigator, Ja* to wake her up cause she always misses church cause she is sleeping. We got to her house and she was sleeping . .jajaja . . so we woke her up and then had to wait for her to get ready. We were NERVOUS ABOUT BEING LATE CAUSE HNA MORELY HAD TO GIVE A TALK (sorry I hit capslock, I’m not yelling) But, luckily JP has a car.  So he drove us . . but this care was like build in the 80s ..  so there were a few times I was worried that we wouldn't make it . . jajaja.

Ummm . . . what else?  I actually got the package in Christmas!  I think I got like 15 letters. A ton of people from the ward wrote me, and I loved it all!  The best treat was from Mr. Porter!  I read his letter like 3 times cause it is a literary piece of art, and it really was inspiring!  So that was great!

Sorry, I didn’t really plan this email, I just decided that I was going to sit down and write, so its a little scatterbrained.

We found an awesome place to buy empanadas!  Like the best I have tasted in Chile!  So good!  I might come home fat from just eating empanadas!

January will probably be a hard month just cause everyone will be on vacation, but the Lord always blesses us when we are working hard!

I eat a lot of palta con salsa and chips!  So good!  Also, my comp and I eat so many apples! There is a little fruit store across the street from our apartment building, so we are always just stalking up!

My comp is going to sing for zone conference this week and I am going to play the piano. So we have a little key board in the house to practice and it is so fun!  She is going to sing o my Father but with the tune of if you could hie to kolob!  So that is going to be great!

Yep, I don’t remember anything else . . well I remember a lot of stuff .  . but I love you all! And it was so so so so great to see you!

Con Amor,
Hna Ostler  
This is our investigator with the batman puppet I got at our white elphant we had for our district.  I loved that batman puppet and I kept forgetting to take the batman puppet our of my backpack.  When we visited him on Friday and heard about all the things that had been happening, and seeing him so sad, I reaching into my backpack to pull out my scriptures, but instead found the batman puppet I had forgotten to take out.  It only took a few seconds for me to decide to give up a mission trinket for a friend who needed some love.  When he saw the puppet his face just lit up!  So instead of bringing home a puppet, I have this picture (he let me hold his darthvader action figure) and a memory I will never forget. 

Cat delivery!

Chat with Hermana Ostler

Hermana Ostler: Sorry, the email is short and kinda scatterbrained, but I just came up with it on the spot!  I have some time if you want to know anything else.

Mom: Awesome email. You write so beautifully

Hermana Ostler: That just came out of me today!  I have felt for awhile that I needed to write something, but I just didn't know what it was.  Today as I sat down what had been waiting inside me just came out!  I will probably print it, edit it, and put it in my journal, cause I kinda liked it too . . jaja

Mom: Have someone record your musical number. That would be awesome to see. Everyone here is still sleeping.  So quiet. What are you guys doing this afternoon?

Hermana Ostler: yeah, we will probably record it on the house.  I don’t know how it is going to turn out.  I haven’t played the piano in so so so long and my fingers are rusty.  Today we are going to a flee market type thing to buy awesome Chilean pants for the new year.

Mom: Chilean pants? Can't wait to see pictures of that! We're getting ready for the New Years party. Is New Years a big deal there? When do you have to be in your apartment?

Hermana Ostler: Yeah, I think they celebrate new years.  Honestly I am just so out of the world I think I forgot my own birthday . . jajaja.  No, there is going to be a firework show that we can see from our balcony on the 20th floor . . so that is going to be awesome! But, we just have a normal schedule unless we see something dangerous.  It doesn't really feel like the new year to me.  It doesn't really feel like time is passing.  I got to go though, I love you!

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