Monday, May 25, 2015

15 out already and its cold

15 months!!!! WHoooooo!!! 

This week the traveling, the altitud, the food, the stress, the spiritual experiences all hit me all at once and I got sick. I couldn´t work for three days and stayed home to rest and get better. The good thing is that I have gotten better and I am back to work. 
This morning we traveled again. And I think I won´t be getting sick from the traveling. We left at 4 in the morning to go to Uyuni. I am in Uyuni right now! Its colder here and its beautiful. We will be seeing the Salt Flats. 
So the traveling. We went to Tupiza until Quiriza which is a historical church site in Bolivia. It was the first place where a chapel was built. We got to learn more about its history and of the miracles that took place there. Elder Richard G. Scott was mission president here when it all began. We hiked and sat in the very chapel. A miracle was that when they constructed the chapel, it was all donated by people to make it happen. All the funds and materials. The beam that was to support the entire chapel was being placed into it, but it sadly wasn´t long enough. They called it a day and left the materials overnight and as a people they fasted and prayed so that they could get their chapel built. They live in an isolated place. Full of little groups of people, mountains, and rivers. The very next day, they found that the beam could fit. Their prayers and fast and also their faith allowed them to see many miracles such as that. 
We visited places where President Kimball was to dedicate the place and where Elder Scott prayed. At a rock and near a tree to pray and find out if they should start building chapels there. We met a few of the very first members. President Dyer and President Dyer from the CCM and my formal mission president before President Hansen were the first missionaries that served in Quiriza. And look at how much the church has grown since then. There are hundreds of members in Bolivia and many chapels and a temple. We also got to learn many wonderful things from our mission president that day. Things that I can´t imagine not learning. My time in the mission is going by so fast and 12 weeks....that is almost nothing. I have seen the missionaries here who are going home next week having such a hard time accepting that they are going home. Its hard.....but I´m motivated more than ever to keep working. 
I learned that I need to recognized that I am not working for myself, for a leadership role, my companion, myself, neither my mission president, or the prophet, but I am working for the Lord. After 15 months, the leadership positions I gained in the mission, they don´t matter to me as much as it did before. Its nice being sister training leader and to be known as the sister that only had 10 weeks in the field to start training a greenies....but it just doesn´t matter to me anymore. I learned that the Lord recognizes our efforts and our work. And who else needs to recognize that? I don´t need to annouce to the whole world if I got a baptism or if I taught 18 lessons in 3 days (that´s hard to do here.....I didn´t acheive, but the Lord needs to see me that I am trying. I was sick...and I could feel Him recognize that I was trying to get better so I could get back out there. He could recognize that I was SAD. I hated to stay home. But I accepted His will and asked Him to give me patience.
I can´t really say much about this week. I am sorry, but it was because I was sick in bed most of the time. But this week is the last one of this transfer and there is a huge chance my companion will leave and I will be finding out who will be my last companion in the mission. I am going to miss Hna Crawford so much. She became a really good friend to me. She took good care of me when I was sick this week and if it weren´t for her, I would´ve been sick still. I am dying in the cold. It has gotten colder. Sometimes I still ask God, Why POTOSI???? I am from a ROCK...a Hot ROCK and I am dying. This area is the hardest one I ever had in the mission, but I love the challenge.
I know the Savior lives and I know that He loves us. I know that this work is real and that the work will never come until an end until God says so. I know He blesses us through our obedience and our efforts to show Him that we truly do love Him. I love being a missionary and seeing the things that He does for us in such an area where I am. 
I hope you all have a wonderful week. Stay warm in the sun. Its good for you.

Les quiero muchisimo,
Hermana Santeco

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