First off, I want you guys to know about my new compa Hermana Coello-Castillo. She is from Layton, Utah has 13 months on her mission and with her its just pure giggles. Well, silent giggles so it's extra funny!
It's going really well. The streets look the same of those in Xonacatepec so its kinda confusing in that way. I was only in Xona for a month. It was tough because their were a lot of families that I thought I could help and then I left. I think one of the great tender mercies happened on Sunday. The bishop announced there was a new Hermana and asked me to come up and share my testimony. As I was sharing, my eyes filled with tears. I could see 4 or 5 families that were with me in Xona that had moved to Bosques. That Sunday was full of joyful reunions. I feel very grateful that Heavenly Father trusted me again with His children.
So, I want to share a quick story to help explain my thought for this week. After our Book of Mormon class it started pouring, like Texas flash flood pouring, and we couldn't leave the church. One of our investigators, Irving, was playing the piano in the other room. We ended up walking around and showing him some paintings around the church. He stopped at a big photo that showed the Mexico City temple. He pointed to it and asked, ¨That's where the special people go right? What do I have to do to go there?"
We explained that the people who go to the temple want to be closer to God and they show it through their actions. We decided to show him so we all headed to the baptismal font. We explained that this was the first step, baptism, and after that we need to keep working, to keep trying, and keep believing and if we do these things we can get closer to God in the temple. That's the most ¨special¨part.
Our President said something in this past conference that's really stuck with me. When he is in interviews with the ¨greenies¨he asks what they want to do on their missions. The most common answer is, ¨I want to help people.¨ He would then say how very Christian of them but we are here to do more. We are here to help them complete the requirements necessary to reach the Celestial Kingdom with their families, to gain eternal life and to live with Heavenly Father. Sometimes as missionaries (I see this in myself) we focus too much on baptism. YES it is important but it's not everything.
I love this Gospel because we can always be progressing and our goal in this life is to reach and gain ETERNAL LIFE. See the difference? We must focus on baptism but we need to keep progressing. These people need to get to the temple! Before my mission, I had the opportunity to serve in the San Antonio temple. I think those experiences helped me realize the big picture a little more clearly. I think it has helped me teach with a broader perspective as well.
I remember an experience in my first area with my first convert Francisco. The night before I left he asked me, "Hermana how do I keep in mind what is important? How do I live the gospel at church and in my home?" These questions are deep, really deep and to a 20 year old a little intimidating. I can only testify of a scripture that I try to apply to my life daily which is in Doctrine and Covenants
"KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS; HOLD YOUR PEACE; APPEAL UNTO MY SPIRIT"
My invitation today is to remind yourself of the big picture! Remember your baptism and just. keep. going.
I LOVE YOU ALL and testify that this is true,