Well I don´t have a whole lot of time to write cause I was watching my little brother destroy somebody in a wrestling match. haha But I´ll write what I can with the adrenaline that watching that gave me. haha I haven´t felt that in a long time and it was nice. haha
Well it was a bit of a difficult week for me. Me and Elder Blanco (Formally known as Elder Faroñay. He is now using his mom´s last name) are working way hard in Itá Paso. He is an awesome missionary and way excited to learn. And the best part is that he has one less transfer than me so he is full of life! We are going to work hard together and we are learning a lot. I wanted to train a new zone leader.
This week I was really humbled by the Lord when I saw the great faith of so many wonderful people. I really realized it when I was talking with Hermana Barbosa. She was baptized six months ago and her husband has fallen back into alcohol. She is struggling a lot and hasn´t been to church in two weeks now, which is very rare for her. So we started talking and during the lesson something amazing happened. I was just feeling so much love for her family and suddenly it was like my mind was opened up and I truly understood everything that she was feeling. She didn´t tell me, but I realized that this amazing woman has been going to church almost a half hour early every week, praying with her family, and struggling to learn to read so that she can study the scriptures all with the hope that her husband will change and her family will come closer together. The missionaries always promise that if she does those things then things will improve.. and things are getting worse. In this moment I truly understood how that must feel. And I realized that it is the same thing that is happening to me in a way. So I told her how much I admired her faith and perseverance. We taught her about patience and how the Lord always blesses us, just in His time. We told her that some blessings take longer, but during the struggle He will, always bless her with peace and strength. She went to church and received that peace she needed.
But I was truly humbled in that moment because I saw that she has so much faith and if I was in that same situation I don´t know if I could do it- My life has been incredibly easy. And when I don´t have immediate success, when I work hard and it appears that nothing good is happening, I get discouraged and lose hope. But I need to remember what I taught Hermana Barbosa--that the Lord always blesses us, but in His time and in His way. I don´t know if Itá Paso will have huge success while I am here, the truth is that right now it looks like things are getting worse. I feel responsible. But all I can do is keep working and trust in the promises of the Lord. I just need patience and hope. Maybe I will never see the blessings of my work here. But that´s ok. the Lord will bless me with peace and strength.
The other huge example of faith this week was Hermana Estefana. She is like 60+ years old and was living with a man who was a lot younger than her and they weren´t married. She was mostly doing it because she needed someone to help provide for her and for her disabled son. A few weeks ago my heart hurt when I knew that I had to tell her to repent while knowing how difficult it would be. I did all I could to help her make the right decision and believed that she wouldn´t do it, but I knew that I had done my all. We passed by on Friday and she told us that she kicked him out of the house. This woman did not know how she would even eat! But she took a step of faith and did what she knew the Lord required. I had the opportunity to give her a priesthood blessing and listen to her talk about how she finally felt peace and how no matter how hard it gets she will never go back to what she was doing. That is faith!
I couldn´t help but ask myself if I had that same kind of faith. Could I do what they are doing? I don´t think so. But I know I can get there. Right now the trial of my faith is to work as hard as I can even if it looks like I am fighting a losing battle. I admire these people so much. I am so humbled to have the chance to know them and to help them overcome the trials they are facing with faith and hope. I can´t do it on my own, but I know that even though I am weak, with God I can do all things (Alma 26:12). that was a lesson that I needed to remember.
I love you all and am so excited for our family! Everyone is doing amazing things and I am so proud of all of you! Keep being awesome!
Con amor, Elder Hawk