This week was truly filled with blessings. The Lord has placed some wonderful people in our path. Our part now is to help them through the calling we have as missionaries.
Hermana Ortiz and I have gotten much closer. This transfer has been a little rough in the sense that I had to get used to a new companion and a new way of teaching and working as a servant of the Lord. I sensed some contention between us and I called an emergency companionship inventory. We talked a lot about our feelings and found that we are almost exactly alike. Our past experiences are very similar and we seem to have almost the same personality. We found that our biggest obstacle is... wait for it... Pride. Big surprise, huh? We have been working hard, but not together. We decided that in order to help this work along, we needed to work together for our Heavenly Father. There are thousands of people that are waiting for the gospel, but if we as the hands of the Lord are not willing to forget ourselves, we will go nowhere. Pride is the enemy of faith and confidence in the Lord. This week has been so much better because we have recognized what we need to correct. I thank the Savior for my companion every day. I know that she is called of God to not only help the wonderful brothers and sisters we have here in Costa Rica, but to help me as well. I learn something important every day from her.
On Thursday, we had a Multi-zone Conference and it was incredible. We laughed, we learned, I cried (the mission seems to be changing EVERYTHING about me), and my companion challenged President Wilkinson's wife to stop drinking Coke Light/Zero. It was quite funny, actually.
After the conference, we felt on fire and were blessed to find 5 new investigators in an investigator's home. Our zone leaders called us that night and congratulated us on finding so many new investigators in the week (12). They told us we were an example for the zone. We contacted a reference this week: a family! A mother, I, and her 4 children. They are all so great and we have placed a baptismal date for the 14th of December. A will hopefully be baptized THIS Sunday! We've been working a lot with him and he knows what he needs to do. We had him meet with our district leader, Elder Hugie, for a "pre-interview." It went really well and he told us after we asked him how he felt about his baptism, that he felt good. He knows that he should be baptized but has fears of finalizing anything and of falling short afterwards. We have an appointment with him tonight and we are planning on helping him realize that the blessings of baptism are superior to the challenges he will face afterwards.
We also met with C this week and he dropped a bomb on us. He confided in us the reason why he cannot be baptized. He related to us his problem and it shocked us both. It was something I would have never predicted. Out of the mission, this would have made me angry, but the amazing thing about serving a mission is the love one feels for an investigator. All I could feel for him was hope and love. I know that his journey to baptism will be very hard, but we are going to work a lot with him. He has a true desire to change and I know without a doubt that the Atonement of Christ will help every single person with whatever trial they have.
On Sunday, seven investigators came to church (A, J, M, W, D, Ml, G). We saw miracles with fellowshipping with the members, especially with J. J is 17-years-old and the first time he came to church, he left early, saying that he had to go home. This Sunday, the Young Men's leader came and talked to him and invited him to come to the next class as well as some of the young women of the ward. He stayed all 3 hours and loved it. After church, he was smiling and talking with a couple of the youth and when he was talking to us, he tried to hug us! We were sad to turn him down as he has become like a brother to us. He has plans to go out with the youth this week. I love the members in our ward!
Last night, we placed a baptismal date with S and J for the 14th of December. They both accepted. S told us that she is going to talk to God some more about "another baptism" and we explained more about the power and authority of the priesthood. She is so sweet and made us breakfast this morning!
This work is moving forward here in Costa Rica. I believe with all of my heart the words that President Wilkinson shared with us at the Multi-Zone Conference: The Lord is smiling over Costa Rica. I know that President Wilkinson is a man that is truly called of God. I am thankful for him and his family everyday and the guidance and revelation we receive from them.
I love this work. I love the people we are teaching. I know I am not a perfect missionary and I am surprised at the many blessings the Lord sends us everyday.
I love you all! Remember that the Lord is mindful of YOU.
PURA VIDA! DAME ESTE MONTE!
PS.. Just a sidenote: Mission rules have changed, from now on we will only be allowed to send e-mails on Tuesdays after District Meeting.