Saturday, December 10, 2016

December 29, 2015

Missions are hard. I have never done anything harder in my life. Haha, and it's only been two months.... But it is SO worth it! There are days you are not making any difference. You want to help but it feels that no matter how hard you"re trying nothing is coming out of it. It is exhausting and heart breaking. But then you have a day when you see someone is reading the Book of Mormon, you find someone to teach, you see the doctrine bless a family, then your whole mission is worth it! You forget all the rejections and you see why something so difficult is so worth it! Nothing gives you more joy than bringing someone closer to Christ! Those moments of light make all the difference! 

One of our investigators kept canceling on us. We were discouraged because we weren't teaching him so no progress was being made. But out of the blue this week he texted us and told us he was free to meet up! We were so excited. We were inspired to invite Brother _______ to come teaching with us. What a blessing Brother ________ was. We hardly had to teach haha. He shared personal experiences that related so well to this man. This investigator has a drinking problem. It is so sever if he stops he could hurt himself. So he went into the doctors to take care of the problem, and this was all before we had even taught him the Word of Wisdom!! But Brother ______ described his conversion in the church and the difficulty of changing his life around, but the blessing of being part of this church. He too had had a drinking problem, and he shared his love for this investigator and encouraged him. They became tight friends. After the lesson this investigator expressed his appreciation for Brother ________ and said it made all the difference. We were so happy. We have been continuing to teach this man and are now teaching his brother too!! I love how happy this gospel is! 

Christmas was absolutely amazing! Christmas Eve we were invited to a Columbia Christmas celebration! It was so much fun! They made us tamales which were so good! They welcomed us into their family and into their home. So did so many families on Christmas day! We spent the entire day with Spanish families. We had a Guatemala breakfast with the _______ who are some of the most fun people I have ever met. Then we had a Mexico lunch with the ______ and skyped our families! I love my family! It was so good to see them! I got to see my sister who is serving a mission in Baltimore Maryland! We both skyped home at the same time and got to talk to each other. What a blessing! We then had a dinner with a Columbia family who fed us a traditional turkey dinner. What a blessing to know such amazing people. I couldn't imagine not having gone on a mission and never having had the opportunity to meet these people. 

We got a pleasant Christmas surprise when our sink pipe started leaking and flooded our bedroom and closet floor. Haha, we had a fun time getting the problem fixed. We'll see how they decide to fix the floors. But for the time being we have the lovely smell of wet carpet and enjoy sleeping in the living room. It's an adventure. But we talked to one of the people who came to fix the pipes and he speaks Spanish! He is from Columbia. We invited him to watch the Christmas video, "A Savior is Born," but he said he already watched it! He just found it when he was looking for a good video for his family. How cool! 

Bethany Is a sweat heart! She was a referral from one of the members. We knocked on her door and she let us in and was willing to learn more and more! She recently lost her husband and has two children who have a learning disability. She has been through a lot. We met her last week and challenged her to read the Book of Mormon every day.... and she has been!! Within a week she has read 17 chapters in 1st Nephi! This never happens; we were so happy! On Sunday we called her to see how she was doing. She said that she believes the purpose on this life is to become like God! We were so excited because that is what we believe! We taught her and she is progressing so well! She accepted to be baptized! I am so happy for her! 

We made homemade tortillas and dinner for a family in the branch! Then we delivered the meal and went contacting. By this time the snow had come down hard! It was frio!!  We met this Portugal family who wanted to learn more! They are super sweet and welcomed us in. And we are coming back the next week!! 

I have the best companions! We are hoping we stay together for this next transfer!! We are pushing each other to be better. Hermana ______ is so loving! She is all about dedicating her time to the Lord! She is inspiring because of her leadership and her determination. Hermana _____ is so fun!! When she puts her mind to something, she does it, and motivates all those around her. I love them!

What a week! so much more has happened but so little time to write! It's amazing how much the Lord will bless us when we center our life around Him. No matter how hard it can get, with faith we can only become better because of it! What a blessing it is to devote this time to Christ! I love you all! Enjoy your holidays!

Sister Sharie Rowley

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