Monday, April 14, 2014

The beach and a baptism

Hola familia!!!!!

This was the best week ever!! Actually it was the work week ever but turned into the best week ever. Let me explain.
It started out great because last monday we went to the beach as a district! There is a fancy beach in our zone so we went and took some pictures and obviously we couldn't get in the ward but we climbed on some cool rocks and took pictures in an abandoned boat.  Also I received a little mitt and ball set at our mission christmas party so I brought that and it was a relaxing day. I'll send some pictures! We were going to eat fancy ice cream but had to get back to the grind by 6. 

Okay so then the week just went downhill. Let me just say that Satan is real and does NOT like families.  The wonderful Sanchez family started having doubts, every one, and I could sit here and explain for a couple of hours everything that happened, but thursday night, a coupleof days before their scheduled baptism, they all decided NOT to get baptized! We love that family so much and were distraught, we left crying and praying and sat down that night and decided that that was NOT okay and we had to do something about it. We called President Archibald and he gave us advice and and our zone leaders and we planned a great lesson and went on Friday night and it just turned out okay but we did all we could. we left the house sad because they still didn't want to get baptized and we knew it was because Satan didn't want them to get baptized.  Well we prayed a lot and decided that we had done everything we could, so we just needed to continue to have Faith and work and the Lord would do the rest. So we told the family that we still were going to be at the church for their baptism and they could choose.  We filled the font and invited everybody and set up chairs and everything.

  At 8 they hadn't showed up so we went over and they were chilling in their house.  we talked for a long time and then all of the sudden, out of nowhere, the son said, Well, let's go! And they all said, okay! let's do it! WHAT!!!!!! We were absolutely shocked! The only thing that can explain that is that the Spirit softened their hearts and opened their hearts just enough to make the decision.  They all got baptized together and we are so incredibly happy for them!!!!! :) It was a great service with a strong spirit and the bishop gave them all books and bibles and hymnals and everything. I haven't stopped smiling since! So basically that was a super long story short. We were so discouraged and were about to give up but we kept the Faith and as always, light overpowered dark and they can now continue to progress to the Celestial Kingdom as a family! Wow.  The worst week ever turned into the best week ever.  I love that family so much. They are pretty much my second family. That was literally the hardest thing I have ever done, but the day of their baptism was one of the happiest days of my life. It was so rewarding! 
Thank you SO much for all the prayers and thoughts for us and for them.  Prayers work! After this week I can testify even stronger that Satan is real but that God is way more powerful. Faith with works brings miracles and the CHURCH IS TRUE! I'm so happy! :) 
Love you so much!  

Hermana Jones 

Monday, April 7, 2014

La Conferencia general

Buenos dias!

General Conference this week was awesome! I've definitely grown a lot to appreciate general conference on my mission.  The entire week I was super anxious for saturday to come! All of the missionaries say that General conference is better than Christmas as a missionary and that's so true. I loved it!
It's hard to pick a favorite talk but I absolutely loved the Sunday morning session. I felt like Bishop Stevenson and President Monson were talking directly to me, so it was great.  I also felt like there was a great overall theme of that the world is changing but God never changes so we need to stick strong to what we know and not let the world influence.  It was great.  I also loved President Monson's statement about temples. What I understood is that we can't keep building temples until we actually start using more the ones that we have! Let's get to work and start attending the temple more! I haven't been able to go to the temple since I left the Provo MTC and I sure miss it.  I think this week or next we will be able to go with a less active member we reactivated because she is going to get endowed. 

The work has been moving right along here and unfortunately we had a pretty slow week here, but we are working so that things will pick up again.  A couple of weeks ago we had a training called, "This is war" from our mission president and I love the title of the training because it is so true! I have seen that so much this week.  We are literally in a battle right now every day against Satan and it's hard, but we know who is going to win! We are keeping our Faith and animo and pushing through! 
OH! Fun fact: our zone had 38 baptisms this month! That's a record for the mission I think. Also, hermana Alonso and I were one of the 4 companionships of the month!

Funny story: This week was April Fool's day, (Dia de los inocentes) except they celebrate it here in November but I told Hermana Alonso that in the US it is in April so I was in the bathroom that morning and the phone rang and she answered the phone and said, "Oh, President Archibald! Como esta!!!" So I ran out of the bathroom with a "WHY IS HE CALLING" face and she just started cracking up and yelled "APRIL FOOLS!" haha. But the funny part: That night I was in the bathroom again and President Archibald literally called so I just naturally thought she was joking when she answered the same way... but turned out it was actually him!  Talk about the boy who cried wolf. haha.  No worries, he was just calling to chat and had a couple of questions about our area. 

Thanks for all the love and support and I hope you all have a great week meditating and reflecting on the words of our beloved prophet and apostles!

Hermana Jones

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Los Milagros

Hello Hello!

It's finally reaching OtoƱo (Fall) in Peru so the heat isn't killing us as much which is great. Every corner here has ice cream for sale for 1 sol (about 35 cents) so I definitely having spent my fair share in ice cream this summer.  

This week the two little girls I was talking about got baptized! Their parents are members but we couldn't figure out why they weren't baptized yet and it was a mixture of fear, not really wanting to, and their dad wanting them to know everything before they got baptized.  We went over a lot and did Family Home Evening's with them and they just opened up more and more every time as we sang and taught and played little games with them.  So we pretty much just told them this week that they were going to get baptized on Saturday and they were okay with it! Their dad needed a little more convincing but in this whole process we were able to reactivate him and he baptized them this weekend. It was great! Next goal: Sealed in the temple.  

Also this weekend our investigator, Gary, got baptized! Gary is literally one of the smartest people I have met but is so humble and just awesome.  Here's his story: He used to be the typical worldly guy with his friends and girls and such but one day he woke up and was paralyzed from the chest down. I didn't understand too well what the cause was but I think it was Meningitis? is that the thing where the liquid inflames around your brain and spinal cord? Well it was something like that and he didn't know he had it until he woke up one morning paralyzed.  It completely changed him and now he is extremely involved in the community and helping others.  We met him because he plays on a wheelchair basketball team that practices in the church's court.  He has been investigating churches for years and almost got baptized as a Jehovah's witness but last minute dropped out because they couldn't answer all of his "doubts." Well we started teaching him and he just ate everything up and understood perfectly and was one of those people that when we called to remind him to read the Book of Mormon he would say, "I was actually reading just now!"  or one day he asked us what is the difference between Aaronic and Melch. Priesthood before we even taught that!  haha so he's great and was very happy to get baptized and afterwards shared a great testimony about how renovated he felt and it was something he had been searching for for years.

I'm super excited for General conference this week and we are using that a lot to proselyte. I'm using Jacob's line, "Have you heard the good news?!? There's a living prophet and he is going to talk to us this weekend!!!!!!!!" It's pretty fun and hopefully we can have a lot of people come and listen to the words of the living prophet. 

I hope you all have a great week and I love you bunches!

Hermana Jones