Well Juan and Kari were not baptized this week. Juan ended up working all day and he wasn't even able to get to his baptismal interview. So it was a pretty big disappointment. As a missionary, you come to love your investigators and the families you teach SO much and you just desire so much their salvation...and when they don't make baptismal covenants it is devastating. After so much fasting and praying and studying for them and following what the Spirit tells you to do and it doesn't happen...they aren't baptized..it is a HUGE trial. But here is an experience that was very very spiritually uplifting this week:
This week I had a great experience with prayer and experiencing the power of the Atonement. It was very hard when Juan and Kari told us that they were not going to be able to be baptized . I was pretty devastated to be honest. When things like this happen in the mission, Satan attacks. He makes me feel like the worst missionary on the planet. I was feeling like that and I decided to go and kneel down and say a prayer. In this prayer, I felt so much peace. I really felt that Heavenly Father was listening to me and communicating with me. I felt His understanding and I felt so much love. I realized that the atonement of Jesus Christ provides so much comfort to us when we need it. He knows us inside and out and He knows EXACTLY how we are feeling. I could feel that power in this prayer. And I know that anytime in our lives that we are feeling down on ourselves, and Satan is attacking us, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are there to provide the love and comfort that we need. I am thankful for the opportunity that we have to pray and talk to our Father in Heaven. I know that prayer is real and the Atonement of Jesus Christ strengthens us and provides the strength we need in our trials. I have grown to know my Savior in this past year and a half and I know that the Atonement is real. There is a song that I like that says ¨How can I keep this gift to myself, When I can lift somebody else? I am a witness of His miracle and His mercy¨ I am a witness of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and I love sharing this gift and lifting other people and sharing the happiness that I feel from the gospel of Jesus Christ. I love this gospel and I love being a missionary.
This week we also did and ALL day long service as a zone. There is a house that is 4 stories and we had to sand the walls. Well, here in Peru the houses are all concrete, so for about 5 hours we were sanding concrete walls. and we STILL didn't finish with 24 of us!! It was pretty fun though :) I like being with all of the missionaries and serving those that need our help. The family was so grateful and I love being able to help other people feel good :) Service is a great blessing to everyone.
Well, in these last 3 weeks of my mission, 2 of the weeks we can't baptize because of stake conference and general conference so on the I have my last baptism (as a missionary :))!! I know, on Tyler's birthday!! I am going to be celebrating VERY well with my last baptism as a representative of Jesus Christ. It's a pretty great way to celebrate. His name is Manuel de la Cruz. Ok, lets just remember how my FIRST converts name is Manuel de la Cruz from Leesburg VA. I wasn't there for his baptism because I came to Peru but I set the baptismal date and he was baptized. And my LAST converts name is Manuel de la Cruz :) Just a fun little coincidence :) But anyway, he is from Trujillo and was listening to the missionaries there and just moved here to Huaraz. So, we scheduled his baptism for the ! He is super great. He is 20 years old and studying to be a policeman. When he goes running in the morning, he brings his pamphlets that we give him and he reads them on top of the mountain and then prays out loud to know if what they say are true. He says that every time he prays he gets an answer :) So Manuel is great. We are going to continue working hard with him to make sure he is very well prepared to be baptized the 27th!
Wow, I only have 2 weeks left here in Huaraz, and I am just going to enjoy every single minute that I have with Hermana Medina. I love being a missionary, it is an experience that I will never forget and I will have permanent changes in my life thanks to everything I have learned, and the testimony I have gained on my mission. I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live and this is HIS church and there is no other on the face of the earth. This gospel brings happiness and blessings. The Atonement is real and we can find peace and strength from it everyday. Heavenly Father loves every one of his children and listens to our prayers. Joseph Smith is a true prophet of God and Thomas S. Monson is our living prophet today. Go forward with faith! I love you all! Sè con ninguna duda que todas estas cosas son verdaderas y que Jesucristo es mi Salvador. Les amo.