Monday, April 20, 2015

Living the Book of Mormon

This week has been honestly an exhausting week. I remember when I first got to Potosi and my companion told me, "I don´t know, but I´m honestly so tired here that I feel like I´m falling off the face of the earth". I didn´t understand why she would tell me that, but now I understand. I am exhausted. I literally feel as if I am falling off the face of the earth now. I am a walking zombie...walking in the streets. Potosi makes me tired. But the Lord continues to bless me and to help me to keep going. I feel as if angels push me forward from behind as I struggle my way forward through the streets.

Its been a week a little tough, too but only because people weren´t home and members fell through with their promises to acompany us...but its honestly the life of missionaries here in Bolivia. In Potosi, I feel that the work here is harder, but I love it as well because slowly but surely the miracles are coming out. One night, my companion happened to sit in the back of the bus and I was in the front because of the lack of space in the auto. She talked to the lady she was sitting next to. The following day we went to look for her at her house. She happened to be out already at her door and we were received into her home. She happens to be a single mother who is separated from her husband for a few complicated marriage problems. She lives with her daughter and she was having trouble accepting that she is a daughter of God. That struggle just broke my heart-and I just tried to find the words to help her realize that she is a daughter of our Heavenly Father. My companion and I could really feel that the Savior really guided us to her. We had her say the last prayer to end the lesson and her prayer just touched my heart. I could feel the spirit come to me as she said the words...she thanked God for sending His servants to her.

Just moments after that appointment we walked down the street and ran into a sister member from our ward that we heard that had a reference for us. She took us to the reference that very instant. It was her sister who isn´t a member and is suffering from a type of bone cancer. She was pratically a single mother her whole life of 4 children and an amazing artist and sculptor. She showed us her portfolio of her work and she is talented. But because she is sick, it is difficult for her to do what she enjoys. I thought hard about this, and mom, would you be able to write her a letter of encouragement with maybe a few pictures of you when you were sick and of you now all healthy and all? I´ll translate the letter for you to tell her it. She honestly just needs lots of love right now and is going through a hard time. But I am grateful......she also too ended the lesson with a prayer thanking God for sending His servants to her.

It touches my heart to see how the Lord guides companion and I have been working hard to get to know the members and to help them. We knew that a few had a few problems in their unity as a family or in their marriage and we applied what we are learning now in the mission and taught it to them to help them become strengthened. We taught about prayer in a family home evening in their home and we focused on the different part that they may not have realized that would make a huge difference. Hugs. In the mission they taught us to hug each other after every prayer we do as companions. It really was hard for me to get used to that. I am not very an affeccionate person and a missionary, I just gotten less affectionate (sorry I can´t remember how to spell that word). But I see the big difference and I realized that our family does that. The whole group hug after the family prayer. In this case, in the family we were teaching, the father was a returned missionary and we reminded him of the things he perhaps learned in the mission. We gave them the challenge to do group hugs after praying. Yesterday in Ward Counsel, our ward mission leader gave acknowledgement for that lesson and said that that very brother in the ward, mentioned in their class how grateful he was to be reminded to do that in his family and how it is helping their family to be more united. That made me so happy and it touched my heart to know that the Savior helped us to know how we could bless their family.

We visited a counselor of the bishop (we don´t have a bishop as of right now) so we could see how we could lessen the burden of the ward and help them somehow. All they asked of us was that if we could make a Hawaiian dish with them one night....the problem is that I completely forgot what there is to cook at home.....and here...I just don´t remember a lot of stuff. Can you probably give me ideas mom??? hahah I literally have bad memory now. I was thinking maybe Hawaiian Haystack? Because its a lot more easier to get the ingredients maybe?

So we had our stake activity and acted out the stories of the Book of Mormon. It was a beautiful activity and I could really feel the spirit. We acted a few things such as the story of King Lamoni, the Tree of Life, the life of the missionaries in a funny manner, and when Jesus Christ came to America. This activity really made me realize that these stories are real. They are real stories and to act them out was a wonderful priviledge to do and share with others. I was Sariah in the tree of life scene, a sheep in the king lamoni scene, and one of the people who were there to witness that Jesus came to America. I went home that night in awe and being grateful for the BOM even more......I love that Book and it keeps changing my life more and more each day.

Sometimes as a missionary and doing all I can do to help people progress, and see them not go to church makes me just devastated.....these past sundays were hard to sit in the sacrament room and not see them come. But yesterday my companion and I prayed to accept His will and help us to be patient with our investigators and they make come if it shall be His will....we were blessed. 5 of them came. I was tremendously happy.

I do meet interesting people in the street or at their door step....sometimes I get a little sassy to be honest. I´m not perfect I know, but this lady....I lost it. Her name was Nancy....we thought she was friendly, but it just went downhill. We tried talking to help and give her a little of what we teach, but she just had me look up scriptures in the bible and listen. I tried to talk over her voice, but that didn´t do anything. She asked us, "Do you guys know how many books are in the Bible?" And I told her.....Hermana do we really know that? (I lost it right there...). We had to end it and tell her that we wanted God to bless her and all that stuff. I walked away for blow off some steam.....some people....are still children of God.

Oh as you know this week is the beginning of new transfers. My companion and I are staying together in Potosi. And its getting colder and colder each day. We are having a few new more sisters here in our area to do some companion exchanges. I´m pretty stoked! I can not believe that half of April has already gone by and I´ll be making 14 months already......its going by so fast and that means that is only 3 transfers left before going home.

I do have a question though, when is mother´s day? I´m sorry....I don´t know anything about home now that I´m away haha. Tell me soon so I can start searching places with my companion to do skype with you guys. I hope that you all have a wonderful week and I´m just waiting for that email to hear that Marvy already had the bugger come out of her. I expect pictures of him. I want to see my handsome nephew out and chubby.

I love you all and thank you for your love!!!
Hna Santeco

1 comment:

  1. May the Lord keep you smiling and doing your best to help your brothers and sisters in Bolivia. They are of the house of Israel and Nephi and Jacob pleaded to the Lord for the blessing they are receiving trough the gospel. You are one of the servants that Jacob talks in Chapter 5. Love you,