Monday, June 2, 2014

We teach, we commit and we follow up!

Dear family,
Okay, I had no idea that Nicole was even dating, and Sarah . . baby?  I feel like I am just so out of it.  Right now I am exhausted.  We played basketball this morning with some members, and Chubs would have been proud of my balling skills.  I ran my butt off chasing Hna Neilson around. But it was so fun. A few times I totally sunk the ball . . sweet!  But I usually hung out under the basket and caught all the rebounds . . that's the key to basketball . . REBOUNDS!  I whacked a few times and now I just hurt all over.  

Plus, this week, WE GOT BIKES!  We have just been whipping around our sector, but it is more tiring.  We are starting to explore more of the surrounding hick towns.  We have been going out to La Higuera, which is up hill the whole way.  This first time we went there on bike, Hermana Alonso literally almost fainted.  We had to stop so that she could lay down on the side of the road.  But we are getting used to working with bikes.

On Thursday, after weekly planning we had like no appointments, so we got on our bikes to see where we would end up.  We ended up discovering a tiny poblacion about 15 or 20 minutes from Santa Maria.  This is untouched territory we are talking about.  I don’t know the last time that missionaries have been there. So we started knocking doors and the people are very receptive.  It was super fun.

On Friday Hna J and I had leadership counsel in Santiago.  Its a meeting once a month for all the leaders.  I have been like three times.  I am not a sister leader any more, just a trainer, but all the trainers also go.  Basically its pre zone conference, but it was still fun cause I got to see a bunch of my friends.  But we are coming up to a time of great changes in the mission. Almost all the leaders that were there are either leaving this change or the next, plus in 2 weeks we are getting a new president.  So this mission is going to change greatly. I however, will not be here for it, and that's okay.  This mission was perfect for me.

In the end, the week was actually a little difficult, cause we are just not finding anyone to teach.  All our appointments have been falling through, and te menos activos that we are visiting just don’t want to progress.  On Saturday night, I honestly just didn’t know what to do after all the citas fell through again.  So we sat down on a bench in the plaza.  We talked about a lot of things, and in the end, Hna Alonso said that we need to change our perspective.

Santa Maria is a hard sector. Basically it is the Justo Duract of the mission.  But, Hna Alonso said that if we look at the sector as a burden, then we will never see it progress. But if we see it as a privilege to work here, we will start to see progression.  Everything depends on the outlook and the attitude.  If one says, "I will never run a marathon" then they never will, cause they won’t work for it.  But if one says "Hey, I’m going to run a marathon."  There, the goal was set, and now a plan will be put in to practice, and eventually that person will succeed.  Its the same.  If we say "This sector is too hard, and we won’t have baptisms.  The branch is weak, and won’t progress.  So I will just endure until transfers."  Well, with that outlook a missionary won’t see any progression, cause they won’t work for it.  But if you change the outlook too "Yeah, this sector might be difficult, but its not impossible. Actually, its a privilege to be working here and to have the opportunity to help this branch. LETS DO THIS THING!" then that missionary will sow, and when one sows, eventually there will be reaping. So its going to be tough, but its not impossible.

That night on the bench in the plaza, Hna Alonso really helped me.  I was just really down, for a lot of different reasons, but she really helped me see the situation in a different light. I guess after spending my whole mission just helping and giving, I had to be humble and realize that I was not strong enough to lift myself, and I too needed a hand.  But, after my park bench therapy I was better, though sometimes I still get down.  I know its just Satan trying to get at me for this last stretch of the mission, but there is no game.

So I am doing okay.  I am just super exhausted. Today we are just going to chill, and I think I am going to bake something.  Sometimes its weird to think that life keeps moving up there in the US, that people are changing, getting married, having babies and going on missions. My world down here is much more simple.  We teach, they commit, and we follow up. Real life seems much harder.  But hey . . as Elder Holland told us . . THIS IS REAL LIFE. There is no going back.

Okay, I don’t know what else to write.  Oh, we are going to start a eating healthy plan. Me, Hna Alonso, Hna Nielson and Hna J.  I don’t know if I told you, but we live in a house with the other sisters in our branch. It’s so fun!  So we are going to start eating healthy.  Carrot sticks - yum!  Actually, I don’t really like carrots. . well . . kinda.

Yeah, when I start talking about carrots, it means that I really don’t have anything else to say.  Love you all. Have a great week!  And take care of my copper!  Pobrecito!
Con Amor,

Hna Ostler 

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