Monday, March 31, 2014

God always has miracles planned for us

Dear Familia!

Mom, you are the best!  Thanks so much for doing my schedule,  Thats a huge stress reliever for me!  About the British class, I know about the prerec, but I took that prerec class in Hawaii and I worked my tail off to get a good grade.  My transcript says that BYU accepts the credit, but only as an elective.  English 251 is like the pre rec for all english major classes . . ugg, I really don’t want to take it again, but what can you do?  Also, Hna Ireland told me about the scuba diving class and I was totally planning on signing up for it! How do you know these things?  Also, the sem class I think will be fun, and even though I don’t need Randy's class, it is an opportunity that can’t be passed up.  He better go easy on me, cause I really wasn’t planning on taking another science class in my life.  But really, you are the best ever!  Now, if you could only find me a job . .jajaja.

So, this change is finally coming to a close, and I am happy about that.  It’s been a difficult change for me for various reasons.  I don’t know if I will be staying in vivaceta.  A part of me wants to stay because I just love the people here, but then again, I don’t know if there is anyone left for me to find here.  If I stay I will start knocking doors for the third time.

The week was slow and yet fast.  Slow because we didn’t teach a lot, or find very many new investigators.  No one came to church, and our investigator pool is slowing shrinking. I think I need to work harder and have more faith that the Lord is preparing people.  And fast because . ..  well just cause every week seems to be going faster and faster.  My mission turned on light speed, and the weeks are just flashing by.

Though the work has been slow, God always has miracles planned for us.  The miracle of the familia Cruz began developing about two months ago when I was with Hermana Perez. We had both been praying that we would find a family to teach to strengthen the ward. One night we were walking down the street and a man who was entering his house called out "Hermanas!"  We went over to talk to him, and found out that he is a less active member who moved into our sector a few days before.  His name is RC and he is from Peru.  He told us that his oldest daughter, G* (16) is a member, but his two youngest sons still weren’t baptized.  His "wife" also is not a member because they aren’t married.  Typical.  He told us that he has been in Chile for 2 years working so that his family could come live with him. At this time his family was still in Peru.  He said that he finally had enough money, and that his family would be traveling to Chile within a month and a half.

Wow, Hna Perez and I were so excited to have a family to work with, even if they wouldn’t be here for a while.  Well, we tried visiting RC a few times, and I even passed by with Hna Peralta, but we never found him again, and eventually the familia Cruz moved to the back of my mind.

Just last week, Hna Peralta and I were out working, and all our plans fell through.  Typical. Hna Peralta asked me what we should do, and I felt we should go knock a street called Central, which was odd, cause the only type of people who live in central are the old type of people who are usually catholics.  But, I followed my feelings and we went to knock doors en central.  Well, we didn’t have a very good reception there.  The people were the busy, rude and door slamming type of old catholic people, and soon Hna Peralta told me that we should go find another street.  But I insisted that we continue knocking until the end of the block.  So we did.  I just felt we should be there.

Then, just as we got to the last few doors, we heard someone call out from the plaza behind us: "Hermanas!"  We turned around and saw a young teenage girl with her mom, and what appeared to be her two little brothers calling to us.  I didn’t recognize them, but we went over to meet them.  They introduced themselves as members of the church, and they said that they had recently moved from Peru about a week ago and wanted to know where the church was.  I was on the brink of answering their question, when suddenly the memory of RC popped to the front of my mind.  "Usteds son la familia de RC Cruz!" I exclaimed. Obviously they were surprised, but confirmed my declaration.  I then explained to them how I had met their dad about two months ago, and how we had been waiting for them to arrive.

Later that week we went to visit them and were warmly welcomed into their house as old friends of the family.  RC is working on his divorce with his ex wife who actually lives here in Santiago.  It is going to take some time, but he is very serious about getting married in the temple.  We are now sharing the missionary discussions with O*, and also helping A* prepare for baptism.  RC and G* came to church yesterday, and the young woman almost attacked her.  It was awesome!  Our next goal is to get the who family to come to church.

It is so amazing how God led us to this family, and I am truly grateful for the opportunity He has given me to be a part of their lives and a part of their journey in becoming an eternal family.

Also, on Saturday we had a rock solid lesson that was in between progressing and danger of being dropped.  But we brought a member and taught her and her son, and it was great!  We invited them to be baptized and they accepted!  But, sadly they didn’t come to church cause they were sleeping, and we didn’t have their number to call them.  So that was a bummer. But next Sunday si o si van a ir.  Ademas, el proximo semana es la conferencia!  Estoy tan tan tan emocionada!

Last Pday we went to the zoo, and that was awesome!  But the zoo is on a hill so we basically were hiking all afternoon, which was fine and actually enjoyable, but it wiped us out for the first few days of the week.



And Melvin
I found them all.
They escaped form New York, took a vacation in Madacascar,
popped over to Africa, passed through Europe, and ended up in Chile . .jajaja!
The weather is cooling down and it makes the long hours of knocking doors after lunch more bearable.  An Hermana cooked us turkey this week and she put cumin in it!  Oh is was so good and it reminded me of home.  Its been a long time since I’ve eaten something with cumin. I’m teaching Hna Peralta english, and she is now doing all her personal study in english.  Today during companionship study she told me that I gave her animo to do missionary work again.  I don’t think we will be staying together for the next change, and I will honestly miss her.  We are super good friends.

Well, that's all I got.  I love you all.  Thanks for your prayers and your support.  You have officially received the award for the best familia EVER!
Con Amor, 
Hna Ostler

Also, congrats to Wilson por recibir el sacerdocio! Wow, I still can’t believe that he completed twelve years!  I hope your birthday was wonderful!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Be more grateful

We are gangstas!

Okay, so my email is late because yesterday we had zone conference.  I love zone conference!  But, thanks for all your advice.  I am doing better now, though the week had a really rough start. But, after a good long cry, that was much needed and brought on by nothing in particular, I was able to get back up and keep going.  Actually, something that Hermana P said after weekly planning time really helped me change my perspective.

You see, our sector is kinda floundering and I just don’t know what to do about it.  After having a heart breaking weekly planning where I came to realize that we have very few investigators, and I ran out of doors to knock about a month and a half ago, I became discouraged, cause I didn’t know what else I could do for my sector.  Then Hermana P said, "Maybe we should be more grateful for what we have."  She then went on to mention the few investigators we have, and how we found them, and how the Lord led us to them. She mentioned that every day we talk to new people, even though it seems like we have already talked to everyone.  Then she mentioned that God can’t bless us more if we don’t even realize the blessings we already have.

She was spot on, and I found myself repenting for my ingratitude.  The situation can be compared to the following:
There is a young family in our ward who has a son named Al.  Al has 1.5 years, and his mom lets him feed himself (which is rare here in Chile cause usually moms will breastfeed their children until they have 3 years or more.) But, he eats normal food, his only problem is that he loves to just stuff his mouth full!  He just piles his mouth with food, and forgets to chew, until his mouth is so full that he can't swallow.  His mom then takes his spoon away and he cries.  But, she softly explains "You can’t keep putting food in.  There is no room. Chew what you have."  He must first realize that his mouth is full of food, and that no more will fit if he doesn’t chew it first.

I think that God sometimes feels like the mother of Al.  He lets us have our blessings, and sometimes He will fill us up until we are so full of blessings that "there is not room enough to receive them."  But often, we are like Al, and we don’t realize what we have, so we open our mouth wider and ask for more.  But, God cannot bless us if we don’t realize what we already have.  Sometimes our mouth is so full of food, but like Al, we keep asking for more instead of being satisfied with what we already have.

So, after this realization, my focus of the week was to be more grateful for the blessings I have.  It didn’t turn out to be the best week of my mission, and it was still strung with challenges and moments of discouragement, but at the end, when no one came to church, and when C* got sick so that he couldn’t be confirmed, I lifted my head up and looked for the blessing that surrounded me and, like Al, I realized my mouth was already full.

This week we also had intercabios, and I got to work here in vivaceta with Hermana Ireland. We are co-mothers of Hermana Morley.  It was super fun working with her.  Actually we just rocked the sector together.  She is also going to BYU after the mission.  We actually arrived in Chile together but she was in the MTC longer, so she is leaving in like 2 months! CRAZINESS!  Wow, it just goes so fast.

When I was with Hermana Ireland, we started talking about how fast the mission has gone, and as I looked back over my time here, I got a little discouraged.  She asked to see my pictures, so we spent the night looking at each others mission pictures and family pictures.  I looked at myself in the pictures, and I thought of who I am today.  If you compare the two there isn’t much of a difference.  I still have long brown hair, green eyes.  I’m still 5'6.  One might say I am the same person, and that’s true.  But, there are some things that a picture can’t capture.  The pictures don’t show the trails, the tears, the laughter, the small victories, the disappointment, the experience, and the lessons learned.  The only thing a picture does is freeze one moment.  A moment that soon becomes a memory.  A picture can’t show development, and often, one cannot even see the development in themselves.  But its there. The change happened, and sometimes the only one who can truly see it, is the one who looks at the heart, and not the frozen smile.  I think that God, my heavenly father, is the only one who can truly see the progress I have made, however little it may be.  And He is the only one who sees where that progress will take me.

Well, there was my soul search for the week.  I hope you enjoyed.  Sorry I don’t have much time to write.  But I love you all, and pray for you often . . and by often I mean every day . . jajaja!  Love ya!

Con amor,

Hermana Ostler

Monday, March 17, 2014

He called me to be a missionary

Dear Familia,

So, this week, we actually worked cause Hermana Peralta was feeling better, which made the week go faster and stuff.  Wow, I cannot believe how Megan's mission is.  Sometimes I think I would like that better, but I guess you could say that I am getting the classic missionary experience.

About our golden family. Well, we didn’t see them this week, because they had surprise visitors . . lame!  They also couldn’t come to church because they left town . . double lame! But I am still hopeful for them.  They have three sons.  D*, who is the son of Ma* and baptized, another son of J* who doesn't live with them, and C*, the son of Ma* and J*.  He has 10 years.

About Ja*.  She signed up for instituto!  She loves the church, and is very serious now about quitting to smoke.  She has a fecha por this sabado, but she didn’t come to church yesterday, so I'm not sure if she will actually get baptized.  There is something that she needs, I just don’t know what it is.  There is something that is keeping her from jumping into the waters of baptism and then slinging to the bar of iron for the rest of her life.  I just haven’t figured it out yet.

We did have a baptism this week!  YAY!  I don’t know if I ever mentioned Cl*.  But, if I didn’t . . well . . he got baptized yesterday.  I have been teaching him for about 3 months. He almost got baptized when Hermana Morley was here, but then he kept drinking, so we had to change his date again and again.  Then I stopped passing by for him.  Well, when Hermana Peralta showed up, I felt that we should pass by again, and he said that it had been 1 month since he had drank.  We invited him to be baptized and he jumped at the chance. He really has a strong desire to follow Christ.  He will just need the ward to accept him.

Also, this week, on a very hot day, when all our lessons fell through, like usual, we were walking down that same street where J* and Ma* live.  I was a little frustrated, and hot, and tired, and thirsty, and just ready to go home, but it was still the middle of the day.  We stopped in the middle of the street and Hermana Peralta asked me where we were going, like she always does. I said, I don’t know, like I always do.  Then I started walking and she followed.  We passed by a door that we had done a contact at a few days before.  I felt we should knock the door again.  So I did.  Well, a young woman, named Ashly answered.  We found out that she is the cousin of the person we contacted, and the person we contacted wasn’t there.  But she invited us in.  We shared the first lesson with her, and the spirit was very strong.  At the end I asked her how she felt about what we had shared, and she said that she always invites all the religions into share with her, but that the way we taught was very different from all the other missionaries of different religions.  We then invited her to be baptized and she accepted.  She was super excited to go to church on Sunday, but when we passed by her house in the morning, her mom said that she had to leave for algun emerencia.  So she didn’t come to church, but I truly believe that she will accept this gospel. She is prepared.

But, basically, I am just doing the same thing I have always been doing, and always looking for way to do and be better.  But I am getting tired.  There are few things that I cannot express through words, but the exhaustion that I feel is one of them. . . .   I often do weekly planning alone in the night cause she doesn't have much input. . .  I would like to say that this doesn't affect me, but I am not made of stone, and hearing negativity all the time fills my head with negative thoughts.

The mission is hard enough.  I fight disanimo every day . . . .   It is emotionally and mentally exhausting for me.

I know that my mission is not as physically demanding as other missions, but I have been using that step tracker, and on a normal day we walk about 6 miles.  Its not a lot, but day after day it wears on me.  My knees hurt, my legs hurt, my back hurts, I don’t remember what it feels like to not hurt.

I want to do this, but sometimes I feel like I can’t.

I want to share the gospel.  There is nothing that has brought me such great joy in all my life.  I still have my fire.  But sometimes I feel like I am driving a car with a full tank, but 4 flat tires.  The gas won’t do any good if the tires don’t have air.  I have patched these tires up so many times, but the air is still leaking through the patches.  Sometimes I just want to get out of the car and walk away, cause this is hard.

But I won’t.  Obviously I am going to finish, even if it costs me all my hair, my right knee, and my back.  The Lord didn’t call me to be a quitter.  He called me to be a missionary.  If you think of all of Gods children, all the people that have lived in the world, that do live in the world, that will live in the world, and that live in countless worlds around the universe, you might realize that God hasn’t called many to be his missionaries.  He hasn’t called many to wear His sons name.  But He called me.  So I won’t quit.  I will get out and push this car through the sand if I have to, but I am not going to give up.

In Preach my Gospel it says that Christ suffered so that He could heal us both physically and spiritually.  I need both.

Maybe I don’t have to push this car.  Maybe I just need to call the master mechanic.  He knows how to change a tire, and He is willing to come to my aid every time that I run over a nail, or that I get tripped up on the path somewhere.  Maybe I am just putting patches over the problems I have instead of calling someone who can help me fix them.

Okay, I'll get off my soap box.

We put our couch on our balcony, and we write in our journals every night before going to bed.  Its fun.
So, about the earthquakes.. yeah we heard about those.  I have felt the earth tremble many times while on my mission.  Its way sweet.  But the other night there was a long tremble, and it was strong.  Hermana Peralta and I are going to update our emergency backpacks . . jajaja.

Send the knee things if you want but really, I don’t need anything else.

How is Harrison doing?  I have told a few missionaries what is going on in his mission. Nobody can believe it.  Especially the part about baptizing in the river, and the AP baptizing his investigator.  Honestly?  Are you serious?  That’s just wrong.  But, everyone gets called to the mission they can handle.  Who God calls He qualifies.

I love you all, and hope you have a wonderful week!
Con amor,

Hna Ostler

Monday, March 10, 2014

The Lord helped us find a family on a street I have now knocked 3 times

So I was using the new shoes you sent me, but they still aren't broken in and they were killing my feet.
So I took them off and walked home barefoot!  It was great!
Querido Familia,
It was a tough week here in Vivaceta.  Well, the problems with the ward are all cleared up. So thats good.  But Hna Peralta has been sick.

You see, on Tuesday I had intercambios con la Hermana leader, which happens to be Hermana Ibarra.  She was in the MTC with me, so it was great being with her again.  Also, being in her sector reminded me a little of Lampa, except the people are more receptive . . . jajaja. But while I was there we taught a family who is working on getting married so that they can be baptized.  I loved teaching them and seeing their desire to follow Christ and put aside the things of the world to be baptized and eventually become an eternal familia.  That experience fueled the fire in me to find a family in my own sector.  So I came back to vivaceta with cualquier ganas to work hard and to find the family in our sector hidden between all the grandmas . . jajaja.  But, when I got back, Hermana Peralta already wasn’t feeling well, and we spent Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in the house.  Well, we left at like 7 to work.  Being in the house all day with nothing to do made me restless.  I just had hours to think, and sometimes I would get discourage, and when Hermana P was finally feeling better near the end of the day, I didn’t have ganas to work anymore.

Friday in the tarde when we left to work, we only had 55 contacts for the week, and the mission norm is 140 for the week.  We usually reach that norm, and I have always found that doing contacts improves my animo.  Well, we only had three days to do over half of our contacts, and I didn’t know how it was possible.  While we were walking down the street, I asked God to lead us to the street that we needed to knock doors to, not only do contacts, but to find people to teach.  While we were walking, Hna Peralta asked me where we were going, and I said "I don’t know."  We walked for about 10 minutes until we crossed a street that I have knocked before (Well, I’ve basically knocked every door in vivaceta already).  I stopped and looked down the street.  I looked at the houses and remembered that I had already talked to many of the people who lived in that street.  But I felt that this was were the Lord wanted us to work that day.  So I told Hermana Peralta that we were going to knock doors there.  Well, we didn’t find anyone to teach that day, but every single door we knocked, minus 2, opened up, and we were able to do quality contacts in one hour.  We also received many referrals from the people we contacted, and set appointments to go back and visit some of these contacts.

On Saturday, Hermana Peralta was still feeling bad, but she also hates staying in the house, so we went out to work.  We went back to that street to contact the referrals that we had received, and we contacted most of them.  Most of our appointments fell through that day, so we decided to knock the other side of that street, since we were already there.  Just as we had finished contacting a man who doesn’t believe in God, we moved on to the next house where a car had just pulled up.  In the past when I have talked to people who are just arriving home, they usually get upset, and say they are tired, and that they would rather not talk to us right then.  But, I felt that I should talk to this family.

First the dad got out of the car and I said "hola, como esta?"  The rest of the family followed him out of the car, and the mom asked us where we were from.  We quickly discovered that this family knew something about the mormons, just by the way they were treating us. Then the mom said that her oldest son of 20 years, was a mormon, and that they used to go to the mormon church.  Hna Peralta asked if we could share a message with them.  To my great surprise they said yes, and we went into their house.  Basically five years ago they assisted the mormon church, but they couldn't get baptized because they aren't married and they couldn't get married because they are both still married to other people.  So only their son, who at the time had 15 years, got baptized.  Their other son at the time only had 5 years, but now he has ten.  They stopped going to church basically because they moved and didn’t know anyone in the new ward.  We shared a short message with them about the family, and invited them to come to church the next day.  The dad couldn’t because he had another commitment, but the mom said she would . . . and she came!!!  That has never happened to me in my mission.  Find someone on Saturday and they come to church on Sunday.

When she was in church she said it brought back so many memories, and that she wanted her family to be in a place like that.  She said that she knows it is the key to their happiness. She is now divorced from her previous husband, but her husband is still married to his previous wife, but she told us that she is going to start working on finding a good abogado!

I don’t know if they will get baptized while I am in vivaceta, because divorce in Chile is a process, but I know they will be baptized.  This is the most special family I have met on my mission.  They look like members, and the dad has the face of a leader.

So, the Lord helped us find a family on a street that I have now knocked 3 times.  Wow . . . I still can’t wrap my mind around it.

So that was my week.  It seemed to drag on forever just because we spent so much time in the house.  When we are in the house so much I don’t feel the spirit.  The only way to feel the spirit in the mission is to work.  The more you work the more you have the spirit, and the more you have the spirit the happier you are.

Es* is doing great.  I love visiting her and her mom, they are so special.  She loves the story of the book of mormon.  This week we taught her and her mom the word of wisdom and stole their tea and coffee.  So now we have tea and coffee in our house, its kinda funny.

We taught Al* again, but he is pretty firm in his beliefs.  He said he would read the Book of Mormon and pray about it.  He really wants to follow God, I just hope that he is humble enough to listen when God is talking to him.

Ja* also came to church this week.  She has been slowly progressing, and this week passed through a few challenges in her life.  This week she told us that she feels ready to be baptized, her only fear is that she won’t be able to dejar a fumar.  But I know she can and she will if she truly has faith in Christ.

The bishop is finally back in town.  He was gone for 2 week on vacation with his family.  I love the bishop of this ward and their family.  Honestly, they are my favorite family in Chile.  I don’t know why . . but they are just amazing!

My district right now is mostly gringos . . thats a first for me.  Hermana Peralta and I are the only sisters, and I always bake something for the elders.  They love it . .jajaja. My district leader is from Canada, and he is way sweet.  He gave me a recipe for carrot cake because he wanted to eat it. jajaja.  So I made it and it turned out way good.  The Elders always plan a district activity and always invite us to come, then they remember that we can’t . .jajaja. The elders and sisters in this mission can’t do anything together.  It’s kinda lame.  But, Hermana Peralta and I are planning an activity with the other two sisters in our zone for next pday . . or maybe its the next.

I think we are going to go to the doctor tomorrow so that we can find out what is wrong with Hermana Peralta.  Also, my knees hurt a lot, and Hermana Essig looked at them and said that I have varisus in one knee.  That problem that old people get when their blood doesn't circulate so well.  So we are going to see what the doctor says about that, also.

Sorry this email was a little boring.  I'll try to come up with something better for next week. Oh, about the Peruvian family, they are doing okay, actually we have lunch with them on Saturday so we will be eating delicious Peruvian food!  YAY!

Bueno, I love you all, and I hope that you have a wonderful week, 
con amor,

Hermana Ostler
There was a special transfer in the mission.  Hermana Peralta and I are now in NEW YORK!!
We have special permision to go see Wicked tonight!  JAJAJA

Monday, March 3, 2014

All the people came out to listen

Dear Familia,

Wow, I am so overwhelmed with all the news!  BYU!!  WOOT!  A part of me so desperately wants to hang onto BYU Hawaii, but I know that it is time to let go.  I did what I needed to do there and I learned what I needed to learn.  So send my acceptance to BYU Provo.

Wow, Harrison, that's tough . . . I will touch on my feelings about his situation in a moment. Be prepared for a very unorganized, poorly written email.  I just know that its not going to turn out as I have planned in my mind.  I miss editing SOO much!  A good writer never writes only one draft.

Okay, so this week started out very difficult. . . .  The problem hasn't escalated, and I honestly think that it will blow over, because we have the truth on our side.  But it might break a few very important relationships.  So the week started out with this whole conflict, making Hermana Peralta and I drop in animo.  But we still worked our tails off.

Actually, we completed all our goals for this week!  And we found some great new people to teach. There is a Peruvian family in our ward and their daughter is inactive and living with her boyfriend in her parents house named Y*.  The parents have been active members for 5 years in the ward, and no missionary has ever taught their son in law!  WHAT?!  So we taught him. First we had a FHE with the whole family and it was entertaining.  Then on Wednesday night we taught him the first discussion and he was very interested.  He has great potential to progress, and he has a ton of support.

Also, we are teaching another part member family.  When I was with Hermana Morley, I contacted a Peruvian woman who said she was a member but hadn’t been to church in 20 years. We set an appointment with her, but in the end couldn't make it.  I kinda forgot about her as time went by, and we weren't working so much in the area where she lives.  One night while planning, I saw her name on the board where we have all the names of the menos activos that we find, and I felt we should go visit her, ademas we are working in the area where she lives now.  Well that day we knocked on her door and she invited us right in.  R* se llama.  Wow, she is just so so so great!  She came to church last week, and she remembers everything about the church.  We are now teaching her daughter Es* who lives with her.  Es* came to church with her mom this week, and we ate lunch with them yesterday . .. delicious Peruvian food!  She is amazing.  When we are sharing with her she always asks her mom why she didn’t teach her about the church before. She now has a fecha, she just needs a testimony and to dejar her cafe.

Ja* keeps saying she wants to get baptized, and even serve a mission, but she is still smoking, and hasn’t been to church in 3 weeks.  So we'll see what happens.

On Saturday night we went to visit a reference that the elders had passed to us.  A man named Al* who is from Haiti.  He rents a room in the a house where a bunch of other people rent rooms.  That's very common here in Chile.  For the owner of a house to turn it into a mini apartment complex, except all the residence share a bathroom and usually a kitchen.  Well, Al* invited us right in.  We sat in the hallway to teach him, and little by little all the people that lived in the different rooms came out to listen.  It was way sweet.
Look who I found at the conference. No explanation needed.
Also, I was reunited with Hna Lima!  I love this girl.  I also saw Hna Morley and Hna Perez!
Basically the Lord has blessed me with amazing companions!
On Saturday we had a mission conference with Elder Evans of the seventy, who is also in charge of the missionary labor in all the world.  He served in Japan as a missionary and a mission president, and he spoke some japones para nosotros.  It was a great conference. He analyzed the doctrine of Christ, and it was bakan!  But he ended with talking about our responsibilities as missionaries to Build up the church.  There is a lot of child baptism here in Chile.  Missionaries who basically baptize children from 8 to 12 years of age, and these are not children who come from part member families, and Elder Evan said that these children usually go inactive within a year.  There are a lot of missionaries who needed to hear that.  My favorite part was when he said "You get what you go for, and you can tell what you are going for by what you get."  It was great.

He mentioned that he had just left Brazil to come speak to us, and I really hope he went to Harrison's mission and gave the same speak.  It was harsh some of the things he said to us, but they were needed.

After the conference we went home and ate a quick lunch and then took a 20 minute nap, cause we have 1 hour to eat and if we don’t use all the time we can sleep!  Since we woke up that morning at 5 . . . we needed the sleep.  Well, for some reason, after the conference, I started to feel badly about myself and my work as a missionary.  I have only helped two future priesthood holder enter the waters of baptism, and I have never baptized a family. Elder Evan talked a lot about the family.  So I basically started to feel like I haven’t done any good at all on my mission.  I told Hermana Peralta how I was feeling and she said that I was letting satan control my feelings because God didn’t want me to feel like that.  I tired to fight him, but he was putting up his end.  And I felt his ideas and philosophies weed their way into my brain, so that when it came time to leave the apartment, I had no desire to work.  I haven’t felt that down in all my mission.  I felt rooted to my bed, unable to get up, put my shoes on and go to work.  Even with Hermana H I hadn’t felt so low.  Because all she did was inflict flesh wounds, yes, it hurt, but it healed in time.  This time satan had gotten inside my head and was feeding me false ideas.  He wanted to destroy me from the inside out.  He wanted me to destroy myself, to keep me down.  Sometimes I am so sick of his tactics.  He always forgets who he is playing against, and its not Hermana Ostler or Saydi, its her teammate.

I pulled myself out of me bed and down on my knees.  I plead with my Lord to send me the strength I needed to fight this inward battle.  When I got up I didn’t feel immediately better, but as we went out into the streets and I testified of a God who loves us to everyone I saw, I felt that love more profoundly in my own being.  It grew and grew until their was not more room for the weeds.

But Satan wasn’t done . . he’s never done.  On Sunday, this whole problem came back up. After having a wonderful Sunday with investigators in church for the first time in 3 weeks, all this dirty laundry was brought back out.  Well, Hermana Peralta and I did the best we could to clean in, but we still ended the day in a bad note.  Actually, after finishing our planning with a prayer, Hermana Peralta just cried and cried.  She has had a lot of unjust things happen to her, not only in her mission, but in her life.  I didn’t try to comfort her, cause the last thing she wants to hear is "I understand."  But I did clean the house and let her have her moment, cause sometimes the mind just needs to work stuff out.  So the house is now really clean, and after about 45 minutes, I said a prayer and then went to talk to her. We talked about everything and nothing, and I think I have finally convinced her to come live in the States with me . .jajaja.  I love Hermana Peralta so much.  She’s a strong one, thats for sure.

So, now we are hoping and praying for a better week emotionally.  Like is says in D&C 58:3  Ye cannot behold with your natural eyes for the present time, the design of your God concerning those things which shall come hereafter, and the glory which shall follow after much tribulation.

I love you all.  Have a wonderful week.

Hna Ostler