Monday, October 17, 2016

18 Meses


2 Bananas in 1 :)
Selfie with Companion
We didn´t really get to have many lessons with any of the investigators we already had, they were either super busy or not home. And so we had a bunch of time to visit with less actives and converts and find some new people that seem to have a lot of potential. A cool experience was that while we were knocking doors one afternoon. We had gone to a new place to try and find a contact, and we didn´t find her, so we decided to knock doors until a bus came to go to another part. And as we approached the first door, a bus came, but we decided it would be better to knock this door and we would catch the next one. We knocked, and a lady came to the door, she was hesistant, but as we kept talking she accepted to listen and let us in to share short message. After asking her a couple of questions about her, she opened up and told us how recently her husband had passed away and how she is now a single mom struggling to balance everything in life all the while fighting off depression. We then asked her why she allowed us to come in, she told us that she had just been praying asking God for help and guidance and as soon as she had finished her prayer, we knocked on her door. As she said that, that spirit just filled the room and testified to me that the Lord truly knows and loves everyone of His children and He knew that our appointment would have fallen through and He had put us in her path that night. We were then able to share about how the Atonement of Christ can lift her up and find joy and peace in this life. It was a really powerful experience and I am so grateful that I can be an instrument in Gods hand and be a literal answer to someones prayer. We are hoping to meet up again with her this week to keep sharing this wonderful message.

Pretty sunset with Chimborazo

Fernando and Patricia are transitioning really nicely and are just really great. Good news, Fernando recieved the Aaronic Priesthood this week, and the bishop has assigned him to bless the sacrament next week, so last night we reviewed the sacrament prayers with him. He is so great and is super excited to be able to be an instrument in God´s hands to bless other people.

We are working with 2 less active families, and if all goes well and we find them, they all will be saved by next sunday. They are all meeting with the bishop and have plans to go to the temple. It is great! I am so excited for them and I am so grateful for the chance that we have had to have been working with them.

Well the time has come, though it has seem to come by really quickly and at the same time seems like I have been a missionary for many years, my last week as a full time missionary is starting. Here we go! :) I am just grateful I at least have one more week.

I have learned alot on the mission. 
  1. I´ve learned that God loves each and every one of us, with our weaknesses and everything, He is patient as we work to overcome those weaknesses, and I have seen and felt the promise that He gives in  Ether 12:27 that He will make our weakness strengths, when we allow Him to work on us.
  2. I have learned that the best medicine to having joy, is forgetting yourself. When I have been the most focused on my investigators, less actives, companions, etc.. I have felt the most peace and have truly enjoyed the mission. For a good amount of time I focused alot on myself and on my weaknesses, but once I changed that mindset, the mission changed completely as well. It was a joyful ride, rather than a stressful, overwhelming ride. My weaknesses didn´t just disappear nor did the trials, but I was able to enjoy it alot more.
  3. I now know for certain that this is the church of God, the only true church on earth. I know that Thomas S Monson is a prophet of God, and his words are just God´s words. I know that the full power of God is here on earth and through it we can see miracles and just really feel the full extent of God´s love. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and Redeemer and that because He loves us so much, He literally gave Himself up and suffered and died FOR US. I know that God is my Heavenly Father and that He loves me. 
  4. We are truly here to be happy and to have joy, and through the Lord we can. 2 Nephi 2:25
  5. I know that the most important thing is going to the temple, and being able to be sealed as a family for time and all eternity. This needs to be EVERYONES goal.
I have learned a lot more and I am so grateful for these last 18 months I have had to experiment and learn so much. It was truly a life changing experience that I will forever be grateful for.

I love you all and thank you all for the love and support!

Con Mucho Amor,
Hermana Cordon

We went bowling today as a district, I won :) (sorry it is a dark photo, hopefully you can see it)

We found a dog with no front legs, he was able to walk by bouncing on his stumps.. and he just stood straight up as well.

Monday, October 10, 2016

2 wonderful people coming to Christ

This week, Fernando and Patricia were baptized!!! Such a great week, but with a lot of little to dos to get everything organized good for the baptism, but it all worked out great, and it was a very wonderful service and the spirit was really present. 

Us with Fernando, in his white shirt and pant :)
Fernando was super excited and nervous all week, but just really was looking forward to be able to be clean. There was a baptism in the ward this week for a little 8 year old, so we invited Fernando to come and see what a baptism is like, he loved it! He really enjoyed it and I know that it helped him to be a little less nervous for his own baptism, knowing how a baptism worked. Then in the baptism, he was able to bring his mom, who we hadn`t met yet, and she really seemed to enjoy herself, this week we are going to be able to meet with her and get to know her as well. After he was baptized he said "I feel blessed." Hearing that just made my heart happy, he is such a humble and sincere person with a ton of desire to follow God and he just wanted to change, and when he said that I knew he had been able to make that change and came to know God on a whole new level, and really felt the effects of the Savior`s atonement for us.  Yesterday after he was confirmed we asked him how he felt about everything and he said he felt great, also he was super excited when we reminded him that the gift of the spirit helps him to overcome temptations. He is great, and is heading in a great dirrection.

Us with Patricia, in her white gown :)
Patricia, disappeared on us this week, and we weren`t able to find or talk with her much. But, we had an appointment planned for friday night to finish up the lessons and to keep up her excitement for her baptism. She told us that she was going to come to the baptism of the kid in our ward, but didn`t show up. Then we tried calling her afterwards and it went straight to voicemail.. we were super anxious to talk with her and we were worried that she was getting scared or something that she was avoiding us to not get baptized. At that point Hna Bench was getting super worried, and so we went and found a room and knelt down and said a prayer for Patricia to find her and to help her to progress to her baptism for the next day. As we were praying I felt a bunch of peace and I knew the Lord was aware of Patricia and of us as well. Right afterwards we called her, and she answered right away! She said that she was on her way down and that she would be there in 10 minutes. Seriously was a testimony to me of the love of God. He loves Patricia and also wanted her to be baptized, also He loves me and Hna Bench and was able to comfort us in a time when we were worried for Patricia. I am grateful for prayers and for answers to prayers as well. We were able to visit with her, finish her lessons, and keep her excitement for the next day. She loved her baptism and just looked super happy and content. Afterwards we asked her how she felt and she said that she felt really good, and just couldn`t stop smiling. She also told us that she felt great after her confirmation and is really a great person, I love her so much!

I really love both of these wonderful people, and I am grateful for the chance God gave me and Hna Bench to work with them and to guide them along this path. I am so grateful for their examples and I have been able to learn so much from them. I know that they are headed along the right path and we are going to focus on strengthening them to help them to keep going down the right path and always have the Spirit with them. 

Baptisms always remind me very clearly of my purpose as a missionary. The people as they come out of the waters of baptism are full of light and joy, and that is the effects of being with God and after baptism they are right there with Him. I know that every little thing we do as missionaries when sharing the gospel, brings everyone that much closer to God and to His kingdom. I hope to give it my all these next 2 weeks to more fully fulfill my purpose as a missionary.

I love you all!!

Con mucho amor,
Hermana Cordon

This is me with a giant book of mormon we found in our church, while waiting for the font to drain. 
It had pages and everything! It also weighed quite a bit.

Monday, October 3, 2016

"We are not judged, we are admired"


A funny thing about Ecuador is, there are not many white people walking around the none touristy parts of Ecuador, aka everywhere I have worked. And so when there are 2 gringas walking together we turn heads, and a lot of heads. So today, we were carrying a giant bag of boxes, and I said that we probably look funny and people were probably judging, but then I was like, no, we are not judged we are admired.. haha anything that we do just will become the trend here, because we´re white. :) The bonus of being white here. Also a member told us today, that because we are white more people will listen to us and we have more success then the latin missionaries, not really sure if that is true or necesarily a good thing, but it was funny :) I am sure this was a lot funnier for me and my companion, but enjoy :)

This sector is moving along great, we have some really marvelous people that we have had the blessed opportunity to be working with. Fernando, Patricia, and Veronica all had their interviews this week. Veronica, is going to be preparing for the 23rd to just keep increasing her faith, she is awesome and came to conference and really loved it. The only thing is now she is back to going to school and she is super busy, so we are hoping to be able to find her this week at least twice, but we have planned to work out a time with her that would be a good time to call and be able to have a little conversation and give her an inspirational message to keep her excited and progressing. Fernando passed his interview and will be getting baptized this weekend, as well as Patricia. Fernando had asked us, when we explained the interview, or the conversation he would have with Elder Miza, he asked us "What do I need to do to prepare? Should I read all the pamphlets again? What should I read?" He got super nervous and thought it was some sort of test, we explained it wasn´t and that he would be just fine, he was just super worried that he wouldn´t pass, because he wants to be baptized so bad. So he was super happy when he left and that he had been told that all was okay and that he could get baptized this weekend. Patricia was also super happy and loved conference, and really enjoyed the part about having joy. She just wants to be happy, which is the most important. She is excited for her baptism as well. If all works out, we are going to have their baptism Saturday, and we are super excited for them, and I just love the change that I have seen in them as they have accepted the gospel, it really is a marvelous thing when people accept the Savior and His gospel into their lives. 

They are really enjoyed conference, and I am so grateful for conference and the opportunity that we all have to listen to God´s servants here on the earth. What called my attention was the need to pray from your hearts and not just from your lips, because it is easy to get in a habit with your prayers, and also to really know and love the doctrine of Christ. The second coming is nearing and we need to be prepared for what is up ahead.

This week we started meeting with the Chimbo Family. They are 2 sisters and their kids, one has 3 kids the other has 2 kids, and 4 of the kids are over 8. They are all really great, and were able to come with us to Conference yesterday and really enjoyed it and loved listening to it. We are going back tonight to talk about it and see how they felt being able to listen to God´s Prophet. They are a great family and we are excited to be working with them. 

Something I am so grateful for is the baptism interviews. They really help the investigators to keep progressing and really make those final steps of repentance, if they hadn´t been taken, and to really feel the love God has for them. Everytime one of the people I have been working with has gone into an interview, they are always super nervous, but as they come out after having been able to talk to my district leader, they are full of light and joy and really just want to keep following God, and you can just see in them the love of God. I am so grateful for the opportunity I have had to be working with so many wonderful people, and that I will be able to be present in their baptisms as they take this important step to come closer to their Savior and Redeemer and enter into the kingdom of God.

I know this church is true and I am a grateful for the chance I have to be a representative of God during this time.

Shout out to my sister who got her mission call to South Carolina!! Woohoo!! 

Con Mucho Amor,
Hermana Cordon

Beautiful Ambato: