The gospel is so great!
We have been meeting so many of God's children this week! There are a lot of people in the area that are ready for the gospel.
We have started teaching this guy named Rene. He seems like he is going to be dedicated to giving this a try! We usually meet him in the park. Wednesday night when we were meeting with him, he said that he would be baptized. He just barely got out of jail and so we aren't sure if he is on probation or parole. If he is then he can't get baptized because he isn't living in accordance with the laws of the land. He hasn't been able to come to church because he works at the carwash on Sundays. We've probably met with him 3-4 times. Just that last time, he told us that his papers went through for this other, much better job. We told him that he needed to stop working at the carwash and we think God helped him get this other job so he would be able to come to church. His date is 22 September 2013 and his confirmation will be the following week.
We met a name named Solomon Sanchez on Saturday. We were just finished with our lesson with Francisca and German and waiting for the car hermanas to pick us up for a Blitz when Solomon walked by. I swear, I need to make a bingo sheet with all the cool gospel names. We've already got a Moroni and soon we'll have a Solomon! He walked by us with a baby in a stroller. He gave us a double take and we had him. He has already been reading in the Book of Mormon and he knows that it is true. I think he thinks that any book about God is true, though. He anxiously gave us his number and made sure that we had his. He even called us on his phone and waited until he could hear our voices through the other side. He said that he would like to come to church and that he would really be there. He of course doesn't have a car. We offered to find transportation for him. He actually agreed. Again, this sounds super exciting, but almost nothing ever comes of any of this. We called him that night and he was still on for church. Still, this is not that exciting. We decided that he was legit-enough that we would find him transportation. We tried really hard Saturday night and no one could. We told him we had transportation for him though. We finally found someone in the morning, but they needed to pick him up at 8:15. We called him and told him and he was good for that. When we got to the church, the elders texted us and told us that he hadn't come because he was taking care of his grand baby. Of course. While we were waiting outside the church and it was almost time for the meetings to start, we see Solomon walk through the gates of the church. He walked to church. He came in a different entrance and finally people identified him as ours. We gave him to the elders to take to their meetings. THIS IS A MIRACLE! We let him stay with the elders in gospel principles (which was taught by Hermano Sosa from the bishopric--he is really really good) which was on tithing and then we had Sacrament. We talked to him afterwards, and he said that he liked church, but he would've liked it more if he understood more. We told him that we would definitely fix that and we set up an appointment with him. Yesterday, Sunday, we taught Francisca and German like we always do. Then we had a companionship study in the park with the district leader. After that we went to an appointment with Carina. We met these cute little girls about 2 weeks back and they loved us! They told us that the English sisters used to go to their house and teach them. The English sisters would tell the little girls and then they would translate for their mom. That is crazy! We should've been visiting that family! I think it was Thursday or Friday that we were heading down Varial on our bikes when this little girl started saying 'mom! mom! The missionaries!!' She was the little girl we'd met. She had been so excited to get us in contact with her mom before, but her mom hadn't been home then. The stars aligned for all of us in that moment because we were all there on the street. It was pretty dark, so it's lucky that she even recognized us! It turns out that 3 years ago there were some English sisters that went there. This little girl had remembered them from 3 years ago and knew we were the same when she met us the first time!
When we went to visit the Torrez family (we found them just a little bit ago and they seem awesome) we met some of their neighbors out on the steps drinking. I think this was Thursday night. The appointment fell through with them so we did the walk of shame back to our bikes and had one of the coolest contacts with their neighbors ever. The dad and his friend were the ones that had initially been teasing us when we'd pulled up. They were on the front steps drinking and his wife was a little ways back with the kids. The friend was much more vocal and talked about how only God can judge people. We talked about what his relationship was with God. Many people tell us how much God does for them. He told us that he just does what God wants him to do. We asked him what he did to show God that he was trying to follow him. He takes care of his father who is really sick. He doesn't even have time to work because that is what he does every week day. He was a lot easier to understand because he spoke English. About everything else we do is in Spanish. When I'd asked him that question, I was thinking about the commandments and how that loyalty and obedience is a sign that we are loyal to God. Being in the service of our fellow beings also is a gift to God. Mostly we talked with the tattooed friend. We talked a lot about the plan and the doctrine of Christ. We talked about how eternal life is the greatest gift of all time and if it were easy to obtain that that would cheapen it. We talked deeply for a bit more. At one point the dad got up to go use his phone. He didn't make a phone call. He felt something. We could almost see tears in his eyes. The mom in the back started perking up. She had been working on a laptop but started to listen and by the end she was standing on the steps right behind the men. The dad went to get us drinks. He said that he wouldn't offer us beer, but wanted us to take the water. It was dark and time for us to leave, but they all felt something. We were able to leave them with foyettas of the plan and the doctrine of Christ. It was so cute how worried they were about us getting home safely. I don't think people realize to the degree that God protects his servants.
We have miraculous experiences every night. I love being here. I love the people and I love the work. This is the most fulfilling thing I have ever done in my life. It blows people's minds that we do this every day and without getting paid. People don't understand why we are so happy or why we go about every day trying to spread the good work. Many people don't respect us until they talk to us and then we gain very loyal, if nothing more, connections.
Ok, Love you!
p.s., my hair is getting really light and kinda long! I am super super tan and my freckles are really coming out!