June 02, 2014

This Week

Hola hola hola everyone and happy Monday! I’m spending another Preparation day away from home this week. Hermana Tapia is a Sister Training Leader, so she and another hermana went to Posadas (Google images, Google map) today for some meeting. So I’m here in Virasoro (Google images, Google map) with Hermana Averett. (Sister Simmons is currently living in Santo Tomé - Google images, Google map)

Some relatively exciting news is that I got sick for the first (and hopefully last) time on my mission this past week. The weather has gotten super cold, but normally the temperature wouldn’t be a problem- what’s killer is the humidity. I can just feel the cold seeping into my throat and my fingertips. I lost my voice completely on Friday and Saturday, but luckily I’m almost completely better now. Plus, we were finally able to buy a little space heater and that has helped tremendously.

It’s super sad to see investigators progress and learn, but then just stop- for whatever reason. We have been working with a lady and she is really interested in the church and learning about Jesus Christ and the Book of Mormon. But her husband is not very supportive, and so she’s having trouble finding motivation to come to church when her husband doesn’t want to go. Another one of our investigators would love to come to church, but for legal reasons can’t leave her house! So that’s really sad to see the desire but not be able to help her progress very quickly until her legal situation is taken care of.

Something that has surprised me here is how willing people are to talk. Everyone wants to be understood and loved, so when missionaries come who are willing to listen and care everyone wants to talk. It amazes me how open some people have been- family conflict, health issues, legal troubles, EVERYTHING. I have heard from so many different people about so many different problems. It’s super sad sometimes, but I’m glad that they feel the Spirit testifying to them that the missionaries can listen and can help. Going along with this, I love the scripture in John 12:47 when Christ says that He "came not to judge the world, but to save the world." As a missionary, I’m supposed to be a representative of Jesus Christ, I’m supposed to follow His example to the best of my ability. That means I offer His gospel to all who will listen, but it also means that I love everyone and don’t judge people or get angry with them when they make decisions that I don’t necessarily agree with. I can be sad that they won’t be able to see the blessings, but I still love them and trust that maybe at a later time they will reach out to God.
I love you all!

Hermana Simmons
P.S. We had Zone Conference this past week, and a lot of what we talked about is not only using the gifts we have but also recognizing that sometimes we don’t have the same or as many gifts as others, and that’s okay. The Lord blesses us all and it’s just our job to do as well as we can, we shouldn’t hold ourselves to a higher standard than what the Lord holds us to (for example, the servant with 2 talents wasn’t expected to gain an extra 5, he was commended for gaining an extra 2). Sometimes it’s hard to remember that when we compare ourselves with others (other missionaries or other work colleagues).

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