So I found out recently that “Nevada” literally means “snowy”. Nevada is a desert. Whoever knew Spanish and English before and has never told me that is in trouble. How ironic, haha. I love learning Spanish.
Anyways, it was another great super-fast week! I have this big list of things to tell but I have a feeling I’ll probably only get to a couple, as always.
For starters, we invited Belen to be baptized on January 3rd, and she accepted and couldn’t be more excited!! Alvaro told her, “Belen, you should do it, it’s right between Christmas and Kings Day (which is an even bigger holiday than Christmas in Spain) so you’ll get 3 big gifts!” It was the sweetest thing seeing her big brother encourage her. I love teaching these kids because they remind me how simple the Gospel is. Baptism is a gift! We are able to be clean from our sins and take upon us the name of our Savior. And after we are baptized, we receive another gift – the gift of the Holy Ghost so that we can always have His companionship!
This week has been another testament to me that Heavenly Father puts us exactly where we need to be if we are always worthy and following the Spirit. One of the hundred examples was on Wednesday when we stopped by a member’s home, Gladys, to see if her daughter could go with us to a lesson the next day. We went straight up to her door and found Gladys in a really tough time. She has been pretty sick these past couple months, but has been a trooper. She is also the most selfless person ever. She is so sick and can hardly walk from her bedroom to the kitchen but still does the grocery shopping for the grandma that lives next door. This past week she was walking home from doing the shopping and tripped and fell. That fall left her whole body sore and just exhausted. Wednesday night being the worst. We could have just called to ask her daughter if she was able to come the next day. But like always, Heavenly Father sent us on a little mission to take care of one of His special daughters. Needless to say, she will not need to do her grocery shopping anymore! I had read these 3 scriptures that morning (thank you Hermana Smalley 😉) and helped us comfort Gladys in this hard time perfectly.
2 For verily I say unto you, blessed is he that keepeth my commandments, whether in life or in death; and he that is faithful in tribulation, the reward of the same is greater in the kingdom of heaven.
3 Ye cannot behold with your natural eyes, for the present time, the design of your God concerning those things which shall come hereafter, and the glory which shall follow after much tribulation.
4 For after much tribulation come the blessings. Wherefore the day cometh that ye shall be crowned with much glory; the hour is not yet, but is nigh at hand.
Trials are literally just ways for Heavenly Father to polish us and help us reach our potential He can see. Heavenly Father loves us so much that during these times of “polishing” he made it possible for a way to feel comfort. That was by the perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ. He can comfort us perfectly because He also already experienced it.
Friday night we had the most precious lesson ever. We brought Belen over to the Gomez house to have a lesson because they have a daughter that is also 9. We taught her about prophets and their significance today. I’m so grateful for our latter day prophet, Thomas S. Monson. We sang the primary song “Follow the Prophet” and it brought me back to a road trip to Utah when me and my mom were singing all 9 verses of this song together. I’m so grateful for my mom for many reasons, and one of those for teaching me that God guides His Church through a prophet today. And I was so grateful for this great family to be able to teach my little Belen the same.
Sunday at church there was a surprise when Michael (who is the cousin of Alvaro and was baptized a year ago) shows up in a white shirt and tie and ready to pass the sacrament! What!? 6 weeks ago, Michael was considered in active. But now, because of great leaders and the example of his cousin, he has been to church every Sunday and received the priesthood and can pass the sacrament. I was so happy! It was the most precious moment watching the Bishop help him fix his tie and then later picking a piece of bread off of the tray that symbolized the body of our Savior. Another proud mom moment! The Church is true. The sacrament is so important. And the Gospel can make the craziest, wildest kids the best kids.
Well, this is my last email before Christmas because next week our “P-Day” will be on the 25th. I want to tell y’all how grateful I am for my Savior Jesus Christ. These past 6 1/2 months have been the best, most challenging, and most rewarding months of my life. And throughout them I have gotten to know, getting to know, my Savior little by little every day. There’s no other way, except through Him. He suffered for our sins and for every other pain or trial we would pass through. He loves and knows us perfectly. I’m so grateful for this special month to honor His birth. I hope all y’all feel of the “Christmas spirit” and recognize that it is truly the Spirit of Christ.
I love you all, and wish you a very merry Christmas!
Sorry, I didn’t take many pictures this week…
Y’all have a Merry Christmas!