Tuesday, June 8, 2010

what a week...

This has been hands down the craziest week of my mission. It started out as promising to be the best, but then took a turn for frustrating. Here's what happened:

On Tuesday we got a call from the referral secretary of the mission saying that she had an emergency referral for us, a woman, Lydia, who wanted to get baptized SATURDAY! Her son had gone into the VC and asked for Spanish missionaries to come, because he (a member of 2 years) would be leaving for boot camp with the Marines Monday and she wanted him to baptize her before he left. Well, we met her on Wednesday and confirmed that that is what she wanted. She had been married to a member so had gone to church many times before. She told us she has been wanting to get baptized many times before but something always came up, her daughter was in the hospital, she was in the hospital, she wasn't actually married when she thought she was (her husband hadn't gotten the license signed as he told her). Anyways, she wanted to be baptized last week. We were amazed at the miracle the Lord had placed in our area. So we spent 3 hours teaching her the first half of the lessons Thursday, and 2 hours teaching her the second half Friday. She passed her baptismal interview on Friday night. We called EVERYONE in the ward on Friday to tell them about the baptism. Then, on Saturday at noon we canceled the baptism. Boy was it hard to do. Sorry I just cut to the point but I didn't feel like drawing the excitement out any longer. Both Sis. McBride and I didn't feel right about the baptism but we just thought it was our mind, since a baptism in three days is a really really big miracle. Our ward mission leader called us Saturday morning saying he and the bishop both thought that it was really rushed. They were also concerned because there is a single man renting one of the rooms in her apartment and they were worried about that. We felt that that was the confirmation that it was the Spirit, not our mind, saying the baptism wasn't right. It was really really really hard to do. We went over to talk to her and they came up with the idea that her son can baptize her when he comes back in September or October. By then her other 3 children (which her ex has custody of) can also be ready to get baptized. Also, Hector will be ordained an elder at boot camp so he will be able to confirm them as well. This way he will also have motivation to stay worthy and live his standards while with the military. She seemed completely okay with all of this until Hector left, then she opened up and said that she wasn't happy about it, and that ever time she tries to get baptized something comes up. "And this time I was only 4 hours away!" She is upset with the bishop and thinks it was his fault, she didn't seem to hear us when we said that all of us felt it wasn't the right time. She is willing to wait, because she knows it is true and that it is the right thing. That is what was so hard. She has such a strong testimony, and a great understanding of the gospel, but for some reason the timing wasn't right. We still don't know why she has to wait. Maybe that's the only way her children will be able to get baptized. She is great though, we love her so much. She is from Puerto Rico. Boy, I don't know what I would have done if I had served there. EVERY Puerto Rican I've met is crazy. That goes for Cubans and Dominicans too. I think the Islands do something to them. But, they are all some of the funnest people to be around and Lydia is no exception. Anyways, we were emotionally, spiritually, physically, and mentally exhausted by all of that, and it was only Saturday. But wait, there's more... At our appointment on Sunday, Rogelio, who is supposed to get baptized this Saturday said that most likely he will be leaving this week. He is extremely discouraged, because it seems the closer he gets to the church the worse things get around him. His boss hasn't paid him in a long time so he is thinking of going back to Mexico. We told him he needs to make a decision and then consult the Lord about it. Even though we really wanted to interfere and tell him to stay, we know that he needs to learn how to receive revelation from the Lord. We told him that we would support him and help him find the church wherever he goes. We also told him we'd help him find a job if he chooses to stay here. As soon as we left I started calling people in the ward but no one knew of any jobs. Then, for some reason Bro. Crandall's name popped into my head and I remembered he works in roofing, which is what Rogelio has been doing. I called him up and he said that they actually were about to start a job that would last them until Friday. When I called Rogelio last night to see what he had decided, he said that he had decided to stay through Friday to seem what happens. I was so excited to be able to tell him about the job then. We are still praying that he stays longer, so that he can get baptized. I am really worried that if he leaves he will have a hard time getting baptized. At the same time, however, I am not too worried about him leaving. I think he will stay and I hope that is the Spirit, and that I am not just past-feeling after all that has happened this week. He will be working with all members, including a Hispanic member in the branch presidency in Ensenada Park. I know that there is a reason Bro. Crandall's name came to my head, so we are hoping for the best. Even though it has been a hard week, we have learned so much. We have learned how to better listen to the Spirit and trust in the Lord and His timing. We have been able to continue seeing a lot of miracles in the area. I hope beyond hope that I can stay here one more transfer. I love Liahona 4th so much! I love every one of our investigators! We have recently started to teach some formers that are extremely addicted to smoking (the woman) and drinking (the man). Their situation is sooo sad. Addictions are horrible horrible things. I have learned on my mission that there are things in this world that only the gospel of Jesus Christ can heal. No therapy or treatment or medicine can help heal the sicknesses of discouragement, hopelessness, and loneliness like pure light at truth. Melissa and Querino are so addicted to their respective substances that they have lost all sense of self-worth. That is a deadly attack from the adversary, but if I have learned one thing on my mission it is that the infinite Atonement of Jesus Christ can heal every person of every trial. When all these people see is hopelessness and darkness, those of us that have passed through it and reached the light on the other side can't help but help them. We with the gospel know what blessings await us through the trials and it is something we have to share. I am grateful for that hope, it allows me to go into some of this sad and dark places and still feel the Spirit and see the potential these children of God have. We have visited them many times in the past week and had a FHE there with some members last night. It is amazing how the scariest part of our area is beginning to change as they are creating a place for the Spirit to come.

I love you all and will have transfer news next week!

Desde Mesa con amor,
Hermana Ladd

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