Monday, June 22, 2015

2 weeks full of surprises

June 10, 2015

This week I have a long letter for all of ya! Woohoo! :) I'm going to start with what happened 2 weeks ago. It was a week full of surprises that's for sure. On Saturday morning (May 30) we were contacting in El Metro (the subway) when we received a call from our zone leaders, Elders Ware and Valenzuela. Hermana Gaitan answered and Elder Valenzuela said, "Hermana Gaitan, can you tell Hermana Walker that she has an interview with President Cook today." An interview with President Cook at the end of the transfer only meant one thing-he was going to ask me to be a trainer. So, at 11:30, we went to San Bernardo for my interview and sure enough, President Cook said, with a big smile, "Hermana Walker, ya ready to train?" The second surprise was on Tuesday, the day of transfers. I knew I was going to stay in Brisas and train but I didn't know who and I didn't know who else was going to stay in the area. Turns out, nobody! The two elders, Elder Zazueta and Elder Llacza left and so did Hermana Gaitan. We got two new elders in Brisas, Elder Martinez (from Honduras) and Elder Alfaro (from Costa Rica). In the transfer meeting I got my "daughter" Hermana IbaƱez from Rio Negro...Argentina!! :) Another Argentine and my heart is happy. :) Because I'm training, I'll be here in Brisas for 3 more months for sure and after that, we'll see where the Lod wants me. Next surprise, President Cook wants all of the sister missionaries to live 4 in each apartment for safety so we're now living with Hermana Quintana from Spain and Hermana Bedard from Utah. Our apartment is "chiquitita" but it's super fun having all 4 of us together.
We are tired, happy and very blessed. On Friday, we had a lesson with a less active member named Juan and his girlfriend, Carmen. We've been meeting with Carmen and Juan for about 5 months now and Carmen has told us every time that she didn't want anything to do with the church, but recently she's been coming to church on Sunday with Juan and in the classes has been bearing her testimony! During our lesson, we sang "There's Sunshine in My Soul Today" and talked about how the gospel can help us have this happiness and hope not only in this life but in the life to come. We invited her to be baptized and after a moment, she smiled and nodded her head, "yes". :) On Monday, we had a lesson with Aline. Aline is 11 years old and acts like she's 18. haha She's been coming to church, mutual and family home evening with the ward for about 2 months now. She's started her Personal Progress and is reading The Book of Mormon everyday. In our lesson on Monday she accepted an invitation to be baptized on September 5. :)
      This week I've been studying about obedience and the Atonement and the connection between the two. In Preach My Gospel it says, "we must be pure and clean through obedience" A lot of times we think that the Atonement purifies and cleanses us without any effort from us but really, the Atonement and Christ's sacrifice gives us the ability to be pure, the opportunity. We are clean through our obedience and repentance and the only reason that we have the chance to repent and obey is because of Christ, our Savior and Redeemer. In the Liahona this month there is a quote that says, "Because of the eternal sanctity of man's agency upon which this mortal life was founded, the Savior cannot take from us our will. We are free to choose. The Savior stands beside us waiting to heal our wounds and lift us into eternal salvation, but He can only do that with our invitation. We must choose Him. For us, there is only one plan of rescue. It is in and through His atoning sacrifice. He descended below all things to rescue us." I hope and invite us all to strive to be more obedient to the commandments of our Lord and Savior. They are for our benefit, they are not a burden. Have a great week and take care. Love, Hermana Walker

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