Oh What's Up Eloy?
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
I swear I really do not know what I am going to do if every week for the rest of my mission goes by as fast as they have been going! It's crazy. I am actually really glad this week is over, it felt like forever but then again i still can't believe it's pday right now. It's a really weird thing. Missions are really weird i guess.
Okay before I say anything else, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO GRANDPA. Sorry I totally forgot to say that last week. I swear I knew, I even had it written down in my notes. But hope it was a happy happy day fo you. I'm sure 25 years old never felt so young. :)So this week we went out to Eloy, we go every week but just one or two days because it is so far out there. Also, fun fact about Eloy, it has the most unreported murders in America... apparently. i don't know how true that is, but it sounds cool so I'll just go with that. There is SO MUCH Spanish work out there and it is a little sketchy-- not gonna lie. But i like it, you really feel like you are in Mexico.
But that's okay because I LOVE BIKING. I was so excited to have a car when I got here, but I didn't realized how much I actually missed biking! It has been so fun. Our first night biking we got stuck in another dust storm which was obviously a BLAST. (see what I did there? BLAST OF DIRT!!!) I now know what I look like with gray hair, it was awesome.
We were supposed to go to the visitors center Saturday night with Anel, but randomly she fell off the face of the earth and we are unable to find her. I'm sure she just forgot we were going.... pretty disappointing but whatever. It is her salvation!
We have been able to find quite a few new investigators this week which has been a huge blessing. The Lord has prepared people for us to meet and teach. It is so cool to see the Lords hands in this work! There are miracles every single day, we just have to look for them. We have a lesson later today with one of them named Vanessa. I am so excited to teach her, she is supes interested.
So yeah, me and Hermana Greenhalgh are having a lot of fun together. It has definitely been a little bit of a struggle getting used to working with and teaching with someone new, but we are learning so much from each other and loving every second of it! We have a lot of fun together, and our Spanish is doing really good. Neither of us are anywhere close to perfect and most likely won't for a really long time. But both of our Spanish has already improved so much! And I know it is just going to keep improving! Sometimes I struggle with Spanish and I get down on myself, but I know I just have to keep in mind that the Lord knows me better than I do and that he knows what is best for me and how I am going to grow the most. This past week I have already learned how important it is to rely on Christ. It's amazing!!
Anyways, hope you all are having an awesome time in Utah enjoying the nice weather and everything else awesome that Utah has that Arizona does not. Jk!! I do love Arizona, promise. Although I did just find out that all the time I have been complaining about how hot Arizona is and apparently this is one of the coolest summers Arizona has ever had. AWESOME!
Thursday, August 21, 2014
So this week has felt like a million gazillion years.
Tuesday night we had to say goodbye to all of our investigators in Tempe. It was really sad. Saying goodbye to Blanca and Alex was definitely the hardest! I basically just cried but it's all good now. It was harder saying goodbye to them than my actually family.. At least we got some real cute pics though!
Wednesday i got my new companion, Hermana Greenhalgh! She's from Idaho, just like everyone and their mom. And guess how long she's been out. FOUR MONTHS.
Yep. you heard that right. We went to the MTC together and now we are companions! I seriously cannot believe it. When President called my name to be her companion I was thinking "oh, different Johnson". Then he's says Sister A. Johnson? Then I stood up and I was like, WHAT ME??
So yeah. We are companions now. It's tons of fun. Both of us have only had four months of speaking Spanish, and oh it has already been such an adventure...
There are only four Spanish missionaries in our branch. Me and Hermana Greenhalgh, and then these two Elders who are second half training each other. So we are all super new to the mission. I guess we'll see how this goes!
So if you didn't realized already by the title of this email, I am now living in the very middle of freaking nowhere. Okay, I guess Yuma is a little but more in the middle of freaking nowhere, but still. I'm in CASA GRANDE now! It's this cute little town surrounded by nothing but dirt and cacti.
But everything has been going pretty good so far! It has been so hot this week but the good thing is that we finally have a car!! I have waited for this moment for so long and it finally came. I got to drive for the first time in four and a half months. YAY. It was a really great experience, and we only almost died a couple of times.
The first night we got here we went around and visited a couple of our investigators. They are cool I guess. Not as cool as people in Tempe!!! They actually just dropped almost all of their investigators right before I came.. So we are kinda having a hard time finding people. I really like going out and knocking doors and talking to people, but my companion doesn't really like it as much. I'm trying to get her to like it though because we already did it one night and found so many people! Not all interested, but still cool people!
Thursday we found a few people that could end up being really good. So we'll see how that goes!
We went by an old investigator named Pedro the other day. He is this cute old man that is like 70 years old. He was taking the lessons from missionaries in December, had a baptismal date and everything, and then just randomly fell off the face of the earth. But we went by and got to know him and invited him to church. HE IS SO NICE! He loves having us come over and teach him, he is definietly already my fav investigator.
But yeah, that's about it that's happened this week. Not a lot. There are only about 60 people (maybe) in our Spanish branch. Super small. They are all really nice though. Most of them speak English too. Which I am really scared about, because no one speaks Spanish to us! I don't want to loose what I have learned. They just speak english because they know none of us can speak a lot of Spanish.
I really do love being In Casa Grande though. Even If I am a little bit in the middle of nowhere, it's great. And me and my companion are going to be SO good at Spanish by the end of this transfer. I really know that Heavenly Father knows everything that we are going through, and that He is going to continue to help us and bless us along the way. It's crazy that me and Hermana Greenhalgh ended up being companions right now, but I seriously know Heavenly Father knows what He is doing. There must be some people here who need our cute broken Spanish!!
Monday, August 11, 2014
Okay so can i just say this has been one of the craziest weeks of my entire life? Okay i will.
THIS HAS BEEN ONE OF THE CRAZIEST WEEKS OF MY ENTIRE LIFE.
Oh my heck. This week has been a roller coaster of emotions starting from the very first day.
Just imagine that every feeling you have is a big huge ball filled with paint. If you are happy, it is a huge ball of yellow paint. Sad, huge ball of blue paint. Stressed, huge ball of purple paint. Excited, huge ball of blue paint. Get it? Okay now imagine all of these balls of paint being inside of you swooshing around, hitting each other at the same time. THIS IS HOW I FEEL.
Okay so to start with. Last Monday we went to Guadalupe with all the sisters in our zone. It was really fun and I got a SICK mumu and this purple blanket. They are so freaking cute, sorry i don't have a picture to show you but wow, that mumu looks GOOD.
Later that night we went out to some lessons. I usually have the keys and my companion usually has the phone because she can talk better Spanish when people call. Anyways, so that night we decide to switch and i take the phone. Well we get home that night and realize that some how the keys are gone! So we searched for hours trying to find our keys, the next day we went back to the people's houses we had gone to and looked for them. But we still couldn't find them. So that started the week off GREAT!
Then we had exchanges with the sister training leaders. SCARY right? I was freaked out I don't even know why. Okay well as if that is not scary enough, I had to lead out the area! I about died when i found that out. So Wednesday night Sister Roth came to stay with me (sidenote: she is from Japan cool huh? but shes not japanese) we actually had a lot of fun! It was for sure not as scary as I thought it was going to be... although I was the only one that spoke Spanish so i basically taught every lesson by myself. But hey, the gift of tongues is real folks.
So after that little heart attack I had in the middle of the week things started to get better.
We did a lot of tracting this week. We have quite a few solid investigators, but then everyone else has basically just dropped us. So we are in the process of finding new people to teach. I just want to ask one question. When has it ever been okay to slam the door in someone's face? Especially when there are two beautiful women standing on your door step?? i don't understand. Like this is America and stuff, but goodness sakes, SORRY WE ARE JUST WORRIED FOR YOUR SALVATION PEOPLE!!!
So lessons with Blanca and Alex have been going really really well. On friday there was another baptism in our ward, so we text Blanca to let her know about it but she somehow did not get our text. So we went to the baptism anyways, and a few minutes later Alex shows up dressed in his work out clothes. We are like what the heck? hahaha turns out he didn't know about the baptism and was super mad at us. But he stayed the rest of the time, and the spirit was SO STRONG. I really wish Blanca would have been able to come. At the end we sang Families Can Be Together Forever. Then after the baptism Alex came up to us and we witnessed a MIRACLE. He told us how he knows the church is true and he feels so bad that he has been holding Blanca back from having an eternal family, SO...THEY ARE GETTING MARRIED!!!!!! Can you believe it???? So many prayers were answered that night. I am so glad that I have been able to be here and witness this change in Alex's life! I really know that this is the reason why I was in this area.
Saturday, WE FOUND OUR KEYS!!! Someone turned them in to the front office. Heavenly Father blessed us so much. We were just about to have to drop 57 dollars to replace them! I know that Heavenly Father really does answer our prayers. Not always exactly when we want Him to, because wow, 5 days ago would have been awesome to find them. But He does hear our prayers, and He blesses us when we continue to have faith!!
Sunday was such a great day at church!! Two of the less active part-member families we have been teaching came to church! It was so cool. We have been trying to get this lady named Irma to come to church for the past two months. Finally yesterday she came with her non member boyfriend we have been teaching! And the best part is, we didn't even invite them, they just showed up!! I probably looked a little TOO excited when I saw her at church. It was a really awesome sacrament meeting.
In sunday school me and my companion taught the lesson in Gospel Principals. We taught the Word of Wisdom, I was super scared at first, don't know why. (I never know why sorry.) But it actually turned out really well. It was a really good thing that Blanca was there, she said that she felt like that lesson was directed towards her. YAY! She is so going to get baptized and it will be the happiest day of my entire life!!
Okay so now to put a damper on that amazing sunday we had.... transfer calls came Sunday night. All of us hardly talked to each other because we were all having little panic attacks inside. So we all sat up and waited to get phone calls, it felt like HOURS.
But GUESS WHAT!! My companion got called as a sister training leader!!!!!!!!
I actually totally knew that was going to happen. Everyone did, but she just didn't want to believe it. It is not even surprising because she is such a great missionary! I am so excited for her. The only sad thing is that we won't be together anymore :(
Then we got a call from our district leader telling us who is leaving and who is staying. I was convinced that I am staying because my companion was leaving. But guess what.
I AM LEAVING!!
ahhhhhhhhh. The second I heard this and realized that we BOTH were leaving, I just started crying my eyes out. I am so sad to leave! I really really do not want to leave. I love Blanca and Alex and their cute family so much! it makes me so sad to think that neither of us will be here. I just really want them to continue to progress in the church. I will be so sad to see them stop coming to church and decide not to get married. I know I am being a little baby right now, but it would serious break my heart. They are an awesome family!!
Even though I am way sad about leaving and having our area white washed, i am excited to go to a new area at the same time. I am kinda nervous to get a new companion. But, I am trying to put all the trust that I possibly can in the Lord. I know that this work is the Lord's work and that transfers are inspired by the Lord. So i am trying to find peace in the fact that He knows what is best for me and has a plan for me in this mission. He knows the area I need to serve in, the people I need to serve, and the companion I need to serve with.
This church seriously is so true. And every time we face opposition in the mission, my testimony of this church just grows SO MUCH MORE. I am so glad I am a missionary. And if any of you guys are debating whether or not to go on a mission... I say GO. it will be the best thing that will ever happen to your life, in the name of Jesus Christ. amen.
Monday, August 4, 2014
bad picture, but this cat was following us all around on our bikes! so i had to get a pic..
we caught (i caught) this cute little lizard in our apartment
Blanca bought us elotes! so delicious
we are so cool with our cookie mustaches
The temple is SO pretty!!
we are so happy because it RAINED!!!
Okay so this week was a very very great week. Oh my gosh and guess freaking what??? TRANSFERS ARE NEXT WEEK. ahhh! I cannot believe this. If my entire mission goes as fast as these last 4 months have gone I will die because i do not want to come home!! Sorry family.
I am really scared for next week though because I don't want to get transferred! and I don't want my companion to get transferred either! Even though I have a really bad feeling that she is leaving. I am going to bawl my eyes out if that happens!
This week we had interviews with our Mission President. Wow! can i just say I love any time I get the opportunity to talk with him? Even if it is just for 15 minutes. Just for that short time talking to him he helped me with so many problems I was having and I feel so much better about myself! He is a for real spiritual giant. (serious, he is 7 feet tall). Ah he is so cool! Okay I'm sorry I always talk about him, i just can't help how awesome he is though! I completely trust everything he says to us, he seriously receives divine revelation, it is so so cool. (he might be a prophet someday too).
That's why I'm trying not to be too scared about transfers, because I know that whatever changes he makes are straight from the Lord! I could get transferred to Yuma speaking Chinese and I probably would be okay with it because he is just that cool.
This week me and Hermana Thomas had a lot of problems with our bikes basically breaking down on us. Especially one day, right when we thought nothing else could go wrong with our bikes.. something else went wrong. It was really frustrating in the moment but it was a really funny day. Somehow the back part of my bike just fell off when we were waiting at a red light.. i don't even know how that happened, but I secured it with a nice little wire so all's good now.
AND, that same day when we were going to do online in a church building, none of the doors were unlocked and we didn't have a key! Then randomly this really nice lady was at the church and let us in. Then she came back a little while later and brought us each a piece of this really delicious cake!!
I think it is just Heavenly Fathers way of saying that even if our bikes fall apart as we are riding them and everything is going completely wrong, at the end of the day there will always be something nice and yummy waiting for you. In this case, CAKE!!
We went to the Visitors center with Blanca and Alex and their ridiculously crazy kids. It was so fun, we watched the Joseph Smith movie, and the spirit was there, really strong. Well, i mean between screaming and crying and getting bottles thrown at my head. It went really well! They are still coming to church and doing awesome!
So there was a baptism on Saturday again.. not ours don't worry. It was this cute lady and her two kids that were getting baptized. It was really fun to go. The night before we were up like all night (until 10:25) baking cookies, cupcakes, and brownies for the baptism because it was this lady's birthday too. I guess word on the street is that I am a real good chef.
Alex and Blanca went to the baptism and Alex spoke on the Holy Ghost! He was so nervous before, he was freaking out. Although I don't know why, he loves every second of attention he can get. hahah he is so funny. But he really did do awesome, he has such a great testimony, I really don't know why he is less active!
So one really great thing about our ward, is that fast sundays always go by SO FAST. And it's because there are always a million people lined up on the stand to share their testimonies! It is really awesome, there is never a silent moment in this ward. Every once in a while this kid named Hector stands up and shares his testimony. And when we see him go up we are like, yes! Hector! because he is the funniest kid I think I have ever met. Oh my gosh he is is hilarious! So yesterday he got up to share his testimony and this is how it goes: (also keep in mind he looks like Harry Potter at age 8)
Hector: "Hello everyone, I just wanted to share my testimony with you.......So.....How's it going?.....Um, I want to say...that....I am guilty. I have things that I am guilty about..............and, So my dad used to do alcoholic and drugs.....and it was really bad. But, then i helped him stop.....and he did really bad things.... and sometimes I do really bad things too......"
(The bishop gets up and whispers something to him)
Hector: "ok um,.... Well I forgot something...."
(dad gets up and whispers something to him)
Hector: "Okay um... The Book of Mormon is real...... and when I was younger I used to not think it was real. Because there is a lot of fiction in it...... but it is real. and this church is real.....and, amen."
HAHAHAHAHAHAHA oh my gosh i was DYING. i was seriously trying so freaking hard to not burst out laughing. It was the funniest thing ever! And if you don't think it is funny then it is probably because you weren't there. Because trust me, you would have died too.
Okay, okay. So lately, my Spanish has actually gotten a lot better! I am so much more comfortable with talking to people. And yes there are some days when I suck real bad, but overall it is improving a lot. And I still sound like i really big gringa. I know. But who even cares right?
Side note to this week: I almost died again by a car. (but I didn't die so no a big deal!!)