Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Week 57 The World Keeps Turning. And I Keep Getting Older.

Hello there everyone! This week has flown by super quickly. I feel like it hasn't even been a week since the last time that I wrote you all.

Things are going really well here in Cerro Moreno. We are a little disappointed because although we are working hard and seeing miracles, the work doesn't seem to be progressing like it should. We are analyzing a couple aspects of our work to see what we can do better, and I believe things are looking up. Our new president has also really begun to change things. As of right now I love them all. I understand why we need to the changes, and he mission has really grown in unity and excitement. It really is the time to be a missionary! Right now! Right when the Lord is Hastening his work!

I have learned many things this week. And now that I sit and write them all down retrospectively. That is when I really come to learn the lesson of the week. I believe that this may be the sector in which there are no baptisms for the time that I am here. Not because I was a bad missionary, and not because there aren't people here prepared. But because I was called her at this sector at this time to learn a different lesson. Here I have really come to understand and love the members. Realizing what type of help a missionary can be to a struggling member more than a new investigator. In all of the other sectors I have been in, I was building a branch, I was helping to bring people in to the church. But here I have really learned the importance of fortifying the members and Less Actives that are here. I'm not saying that I should accept not baptizing someone here, that is also an important part of my purpose as a missionary. But here I have also learned about what I can do as a person, as a missionary, to teach members the gospel. To teach active people to help to make them stronger. 

I love this gospel and I love this church. I cannot believe that a year has passed me by. More than a year actually. This time last year I was in my first week in the field. I was in Arica high on life and a little homesick. And now here I sit in Antofagasta, with a testimony stronger than ever, and more energy and love for this work with every day. (It`s just that my whole body hurts now and getting up in the morning to shower has become a kind of mental torture.) I love this work. I know that many people are doing many things as they turn 20 and 21, but I am so grateful that I have the blessing of being here in the mission. There is no other present more beautiful, more fulfilling, more tear jerking, than seeing someone you love understand that they have a purpose in life, and that there is more than just living and dying. But that we live, die, and live again. There is a purpose in all things. Lo promoto (I promise). 

You have a purpose. You are special. You are known. God has numbered the stars in the sky and the grains of sand in the ocean. He knows you personally. And if you have any doubt of that, just go and ask him. Then I recommend reading the Book of Mormon. This last transfer I have spent a lot of time on my knees trying to find who God is to me. And I received the answer through the Book of Mormon. Through a verse that isn't anything really personal or special. But it became personal. It became special. 

I love you all so very much. I hope that you all have a great week and that you know that God loves you. If you don't know. GO FIND OUT.

I know my Savior lives. I know he loves me.

Hermana Randall

Monday, July 11, 2016

Week 56 Another Week. Another Adventure.

So I have a problem. I found a Webseries on Mormon Channel so I am writing about half distracted. I apologize. I used to be able to concentrate on two things at once. Now technology amazes me, and English confuses me. So thank you for your patience and continued support through my technical difficulties. 

This week was amazing. First I walked around like an old person because all of my muscles were sore and hurting. But I was stronger for it. Haha.

My interview went really well. I promised that I would not say anything specific, but I feel like President Ferriera knows me. It is really obvious that he is an Area 70. it is interesting as well that he doesn't speak that much English, so I find myself doing absolutely everything in Spanish now. It is really good for my progress though. He told me of all the ¨Gringas¨ that he has met I speak VERY good Spanish. So it´s all better from here I guess :) 

This week what I have really learned though is that I really am a representative of Christ. I carry two names on my plaque. The name of my family, and the name of my Savior. I was called of a prophet of God and he has sent me here to Chile, specifically to this part of Antofagasta with this companion, for a specific reason. I think that in most areas of my mission for the last year I was the one learning, and the one changing. And I think that now although I will continue to grow, improve, and change, like President told me, ¨I want you to teach others.¨

Never have I felt the power of my calling before this week. I understand what it means to be bold but loving now. To ¨call¨people to repentance. To literally call them. To show that the Lord is the one calling them. I cannot understand all that the Lord wants me to do. But if I am worthy, and if I am in the situation that he wants me to be in. He will give me the power and authority to speak. In fact, he will give me the very words that I need to say. I know that God lives and that he loves me. there is a great purpose here in Chile. One that i am striving every day to be a part of bringing to pass. 

This is an opportunity, this week, for all of us to really think about what we can do individually to become better. To see a little more of the purpose that God has for each of us. 

I love you all. Thank you, each of you, for being a reason that I feel the power that i do. The love that I do. Without having felt this type of love, I could in nowise give it. 

I love you with all my heart. Fight the good fight and keep the faith, ¨shall we not go on in so great a cause?¨ 

Hermana Randall

PS. We went gokarting with the Elders today. It was fun :) 

Week 55 Happy 4th of July!

Hello there World, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA!
It is so sad that there wasn't any kind of celebration yesterday.... I didn't even have my P-Day :(
But we were able to meet our new Mission President! First of all, I really think that I am going to like him and his wife a lot. Our last President was very good and I love him a lot. He is someone that has taught me a lot about myself and my life. Presidente Ferreira emanates love for the work and for his missionaries. I felt that President Dalton loved and cared about me. But I KNOW Presidente Ferrerira does. And with only meeting him once I think that is a pretty good deal. I have my first personal one on one interview with him tomorrow, so we will see if the feelings remain the same (which I'm sure that they will).
He´s already changed a few of the main rules here in the mission. Before we could not play any type of sports or talk between Sisters and Elders. He first began by telling us about the Law of Moses, how it was super strict because the people of Israel couldn't handle a higher law. But then when they were ready they received the Higher Law. Which he said we were now ready for. That we had demonstrated our maturity and we were ready for the Higher Law. 

The Higher Law means that we can talk between Elders and Sisters of course not flirt or send letters or anything. But that he trusts us to be mature. All the Elders got really excited all of a sudden too. And then they were more excited about the next announcement. The announcement about being able to play team sports. He told the Elders that they could play soccer and the whole room cheered. I never understood Latinos and their NEED for soccer until I was a missionary here in South America. Haha. But it comes with a couple rules. Only on P-Day, 5 on both teams only, and there HAS to be an Hermana on each team, at least 1. Because....... HERMANAS ARE THE ONLY ONES THAT CAN SCORE GOALS. That changed the dynamic really fast. Usually the Elders play to be The Best. But now, the team that is the best is the one that works with the Hnas. I didn't want to play with the Elders before. But now, they make us feel like a needed part of the team, because we are needed. We played for the first time today :) I scored 7 goals. :) There was a type of team unity in the zone that wasn't there before. It was a super fun activity, and now I cant move my legs! Haha, it´s going to keep me in good shape at least. Because they cant play without the sisters :) Haha. 

Anyways, we had a fun morning. And I didn't take one photo because I was kicking butt. So I will take pictures next time. :)

My companion and I are getting along just fine, she´s still learning a lot of things about who she is. So we have our moments of deep contemplation and sharing, it takes time to find who you are. And sometimes we just need to talk to someone about what we already know so that we can realize it more fully. 

But we have had a great week in our sector. We walked a lot, but I think that it is because I am still trying to plan more effectively at night. But it helps because my companion has a couple weeks here now and can help me more. But Vanessa came to church this week for the 5th time. She smiles now, and she even came to the Relief Society meeting on Wednesday. She told us that she knows the church is true because of how being in the building with all of the sisters and everything makes her feel. Her daughter is still working on receiving her answer, but she is truly seeking, and that makes all of the difference. 

I hope that you have all had a good missionary week. I know that God lives, and Jesus loves us. If we just listen to him and follow his spirit, we will find more happiness than we already have. If you are sad, there is more happiness waiting for you. And if you are already happy, then imagine how much more your could have! It is amazing this Plan that God has for each and every one of us. 

I love you all, I know that we are children of a loving but just God. I know that we are his supreme creation, and that he does everything for our good, just like the scriptures testify. Remember that God loves you this week. I hope you remember it always, but especially remember it this week. And remember that I love you too.

With all my heart,

Hermana Randall