Serving as a Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint in the Texas, Fort Worth Mission

Thursday, May 28, 2015

5/26/15 Week 63

Man I feel like I just barley wrote ya'll....I guess that's what happens when you email twice in 5 days.  Well these past few days have been pretty hard core missionary stellar awesome! :D :D  So I'm gonna give a little update on how everybody is doing here in Lewisville! 

OK so we are still working with Fabiola, Jerry and Daisy.  Fabiola is what we call an "eternigator".  She can't get baptized because her novio won't marry her..bleh.  But her testimony is SO strong and she's the best missionary and example to everyone she meets, and she's technically not even a member!  She flat out told her boss that coffee is not good for you and that she refuses to drink it. And she mailed a BoM to her sister and mom. Heck ya! Jerry is her "little chunk" who was going to get baptized, but then we all decided that it would be better for him to wait a little longer.  Personally I had a bit of a hard time with that...They need the Holy Ghost! Daisy is her daughter who was baptized 3 years ago after beating leukemia. She is sooo awesome! Such a strong testimony! And she has been bringing her best friend to church for the past few months.  We just talked with her friend (Maria) and she wants to start taking the lessons.  Yippee #everymemberornonmemberamissionary!

We are also still working with Blanca.  She's also a bit of a eternigator....She's told us sooo many times that she knows this is the true church, but still is afraid of getting baptized because she doesn't have the support from her JW esposo, but we are working on that.  Right now we are reading the whole Book of Mormon through with her so she can understand it.  Also we are working with Sonya!  She is the one that moved here a year ago from Honduras where she went to church with her sister who is a member. She absolutely LOVES the church!  In the apartment complex where she lives we are practically famous because Sonya tells everyone about us and invites them to come to her church.  Haha - we are going to need a bus......Anyways the only thing holding her back is that she still doesn't understand why she needs to get baptized again. She was baptized in some Christian church a long time ago, but she just always says "No quiero jugar con Dios", or she doesn't want to mess around with serious things like baptism.  We are going to teach her a pretty hardcore apostasy lesson tonight!  I'm stoked!  Also *cool story* we brought her to watch a baptism on Saturday, and of course we ended up running late..Latino time....and we walked in the door literally RIGHT as the girl was entering the water! Miracle!! God knew Sonya needed to see it:)

Amazing Zone Conference last week

Other than that we have been doing TONS of finding lately.  We recently found Claudia (typical Mexican mom), la familia Torrez (trying to decide between our church and Pentecostals), Miriam (Honduran soccer player who is up for anything), Jennifer and Veronica (14 year olds who love reading the BoM:) So ya, basically good things are happening here! Please keep these people in your prayers!

Unfortunately I kinda messed up my back somehow this past week.  I just got back from the chiropractor and he said I have to stop running for 2 weeks.  Likely has something to do with the fact that I have one leg like an inch shorter than the other, which is giving me a curved spine :'( :'(   Hopefully shoe inserts will do the trick.  I get really frustrated with my body sometimes.  Grrr - just work!  So if anyone wants to remember my back in their prayers that would be awesome.

Always learning how to be a better missionary
I feel like I bear this testimony in every email, but I KNOW that God hears and answers prayers.  The other day it was just a hard day.  I really don't even remember why, but I just remember thinking "man I just need a hug!"  So I decided to pray, and right after that I still felt crappy..So I went to the BoM and opened to Alma 26 (my fav chapter) right there vs 27-31, sooo perfect! Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success.  I know that no matter where we are in our lives, that God wants to help us and he labors with us:)
Love you ya'll

<3hermana bonny

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

5/12/15 Week 61

Something like this
TORNADO IN LEWISVILLE...but it was really small and happened at 5am so nobody even knew about it except us and Blanca's family because their tree was like the only thing it hit.  Sorry for getting your hopes up...but after a whole week of sirens and rumors it did finally happen!

Alrighty, so this week started out with one of the most fantastic zone councils eva!  Normally when setting our baptism goal for the month it goes something like this "ok so last month we set 8 and we got 2.  So how does everybody feel about setting 9 and having more faith?"  And then who can say no to more faith, so we agree and then everyone just kind of forgets about the goal until the next month when they tell us that we didn't reach it.  - Not always super productive.  But this time, we all talked about everybody that we were working with and all of the possibilities we had, and set a freakin awesome goal of 19 baptisms this month!  Woot woot!  It's so happening!!  That means that Hna Ford and I need to get 3...deep breathe...we can do ALL things!
Oh how I will miss the Mariachi at ward parties!
The next day our stake held a conference for all the women on how to overcome addictions.  We went to get some good ideas for Tanya, but it was kind of hard to focus cuz like every 10 minutes there was a loud siren accompanied with "tornado warning, tornado warning".  It was a little distracting, but I did get some good stuff out of it.  Fav quote: "I always knew you would mess up, that's why I sent a Savior."   
The next day I went on an exchange with our STL about an hour north.  We got to fill orders at a food bank for like 4 hours which was awesome!  Haha - there was that awkward moment when an investigator who dropped the missionaries comes to pick up their order… Sister Tuna's face was pretty priceless! Then later this little curly haired suburban mom tried Bible bashing us.  It was cute. I'll give her credit for her efforts haha.    Then that night we went with Sonya (our investigator from Honduras) and Roman (recent convert) and his non-member mom to the ward's Mothers Day dinner.  Members really make a HUGE difference!  It was so good to see them making friends :)
Then...sigh...are you ready for the sad part?   So we were talking with Hna Castro afterwards and she told us that our investigator Tanya called her and told her that she's been really stressed and she doesn't want to keep taking the lessons, but that she loves us and doesn't want to tell us.  I was crushed.  Tanya was progressing sooo much!  I know she had felt the spirit.  It's always when people get to that point that Satan targets them and tells them that it's too hard to actually change their lives.  And guess what?  It is hard, that’s true. This is a huge thing I've learned on my mission:  To be a Disciple of Jesus Christ is never easy.  People just don't understand that the sacrifice is so worth it! I can't even describe my feelings.  Its somewhere between getting dumped through a text message and watching someone throw away fifty $100 bills.  It's awful. You just love these people with all your heart, and they have such hard lives, but ultimately it's their decision if they want to truly be happy or not.  I think every missionary will agree with me when I say that agency can be a killer. 
Sonya and Hna Soto - love em
Well now on to happier things...Sunday of course was fantastic! It's amazing the things you take for granted before the mission.  I have the best family evvveeeerrrr!  It was sooo fun talking to them!    Now I can't even remember what we talked about, but I definitely felt all warm and fuzzy after:) It's weird afterwards for us missionaries cuz we feel like we are ourselves again J You have NO idea how refreshing it is to talk to people who actually KNOW you!  I do love meeting new people of course but nothing can replace my family:)

After our nice little chat we baked cookies and took them to Fabiola, Blanca, Hermana Castro and taught them a mini lesson and thanked them for being awesome moms for us:)  Hermana Ford is so good at thinking of service opportunities! I love it! Then we wrote a super intense letter to Tanya a dropped it off....sigh....I don't know if it will make a difference now but hopefully in the future she will value what she learned and felt.   We were also thinking about it, and we've both been praying hard so that Heavenly Father will help us know where we need to focus our efforts so that we really can help the zone reach the baptism goal.  So I guess this was his way of telling us that Tanya's time isn't now, so that way we can use our time better.  ....That still doesn't make it any less sad though...well maybe a little:) 

Well, despite the tough times I know that this is the work of God that is happening here in Texas Fort Worth.  The spirit never lies and we get to feel it every single day!  "No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing!"  I love this work and I love yall!

<3 Hermana Bonny

Sunday, May 24, 2015

5/18/15 Week 62

Ok don’t have tons of time today due to our viaje al templo  J  I will never take the temple for granted EVER again after the mish! It’s the most amazing place eeevvvvaaaa!  I feel like every time I go I get answers to questions that I didn’t even know I had!  But seriously, I have such a strong testimony that God knows us all personally and loves us. 

Girls Day/P-Day...Sis Wankier is so awesome! She
took us to the temple and then Mongolian Stir fry
Quick update on our lovely Lewisville basically what we are doing right now is "purging" out our area and really just trying to focus in on those people who have real desires to change.  BUT for all of you Spanish missionaries out there, you know that’s not always the easiest thing to do...everyone loves Jesus out here!  And they all want us to come back, but then when it comes to actually doing something to change their life...most of them just have no ganas:(   But we have really just been praying hard to find those people who really are ready to make a change and can tell that our message isn’t just another bible study.  And God always honors righteous desires!  This week we found 6 solid new investigators :)  Well we are going to see how solid they actually are...but as of right now we both feel pretty good about them.  Tanya still hasn’t talked to us, but I’m not giving up hope!  Sonya is doing awesome!  She came to church for the 3rd time and found a job.  Yaay!  HUGE answer to lots of prayers.   And Fabiola is still our mom (we kind of have lots of those here).   She gave us yet another huge sack of zebra striped clothes to take home...ha-ha,  we looked really cool riding our bikes home with that.   

Blanca is still doing awesome too!  Pretty much I’m just so thankful for this area and all the work we have.  OH - This Sunday Luis came to church, stake conference!! HE's a less active that we've been working with for like my whole time here, so that was extremely awesome!  He went and shaved, got his hair cut and everything :)  It was so cute. 
My comp and I have joined a new group that we are pretty stoked about!
We also had interviews with President yesterday.  Have I said how inspired he is?  We talked a lot about what it means to really have success, which I really didn’t even ask him about, but somehow he knew it was just what I needed to hear.   1. Have genuine prayer, scripture study, journal writing, and taking the sacrament  2. Bear testimony at every chance you get   3. Don’t compare yourself to others and recognize even your failures for the success they really are:)  LOVE IT! And I know that applies to everyone’s life regardless of if you're a missionary or not. 

Still love Sis Ford tons!  No tornados this week but rain everyday  :(    I’m really ready for some sun!  I’ll probably get transferred in like 3 weeks (sniff sniff).  I really would be totally fine if I finished up here.  I love Lewisville!  What if my new area doesn’t have Fro-Yo??  ahhh! 

Oh how I love this gospel.  I know that in whatever our righteous cause is, the Lord of the vineyard labors with us:) 

<3 Hermana bonny

Sunday, May 10, 2015

5/8/15 Week 60

Buenos Tardes mi querido familia!  Man did we have a week freakin full of goodness!!  To be honest I was kind of not looking forward to this week because we had like NO scheduled citas, and lots of free time which usually means contacting...beh....BUT this week seriously turned out sooo good.  I'll tell you about a few of the highlights ...and some of lowlights..cuz there were a few of those too.

our adventure to the famous "flower mound"

Ok ill get the lowlights out of the way first.  We've taught Carolina and her and her son 2 times and they both have baptism dates.  On Sunday we were super surprised and happy that she came to the last hour of church! So we took her to the relief society and… (cue bummer music) the WHOLE entire class was on their new visiting teaching assignments:(  It was sooo boring!  Carolina stayed for like 40 minutes but finally she just couldn't take it anymore and she said "this is really boring" and she left.  Can I really blame her? I was falling asleep myself.  If any of you are ever in charge of teaching a class, PLEASE don't talk about visiting teaching refrigerator magnets for 30 minutes.  We are going to see her this Thursday.  Pray for her.

Ok to the good stuff - This week we talked to the sociodad de soccoro to see if they could help out one of our investigators who is reeeeaaallllllyyy struggling right now, and Monday night they went ABOVE and BEYOND! They went to the Bishop's Storehouse and wow! I wish I could have taken a picture of what her face looked like when we walked into her house with like 20 bags full of food and clothes and soap...etc.  Sigh....I just love being a missionary :) 

Ok, BEST part of the week!  It was Saturday and we had no citas so we decided to stop by this less active family but they weren't there so we decided that, hey God probably sent us here for a reason right? So we decided to knock some of the apartment doors until we found someone to talk to.  We knocked like 5 doors and none were hispanics...(shudder, the white ones are always the meanest) but then at about the 7th door we knocked this girl our age answered.  She looked a little, like emoish.  Basically not like someone who is prepared to hear the gospel. (Never judge by appearance!)   But we introduced ourselves and told her that we are representatives of Jesus Christ and told her that we want to talk to her about the plan that God has for her.  Surprisingly she said "ya i think I'd like to hear about that" and she let us in.  Then what happened next was literally like one of those lessons from the district! (like where the person asks all the golden questions that you think nobody in real life really asks, and then the spirit guides you to say all the right answers and then everyone is like crying together and they say they want to get baptized after only listening for 30 minutes)  It was an experience I will NEVER forget.  She says she has been struggling with depression, but that the Plan of Salvation just feels "right", like something she's heard before - ahhh!! :)  You have no idea what it's like to actually hear those words come out of these people's mouths.  I literally get goosebumps:)  I know that we were literally sent to her that day for a reason.  Her heart was so prepared to hear about this gospel!  Too bad we have to give her to the YSA elders..Sniff sniff:'( 

Anywho, I know my words could not touch people the way I've seen without the help of the Holy Ghost.  Our message is perfect :) 

Love you all!!

<3 Hermana bonny

Monday, May 4, 2015

4/29/15 Week 59

I did a fair amount of cooking this week and learned to cook some amazing new Latino dishes! That's right family get ready to try Puerco/papas y chili con arroz and pollo tomatillo.  I know it probably doesn't sound super appetizing, but that's only cuz you don't know what it is, I promise its ricisimo!!:)

We are pro mexi-chefs
Ok so a few AWESOME things that happened this week: first off, Tanya is still doing so good with stopping smoking! She says she's been crocheting to help her. Anyways we had an amazing lesson with her during what we were sure was going to turn into a tornado!   We've been on intense tornado watch.  I want one sooo bad!!!...but not while we are riding bikes....that almost happened too.  Anyways so after Tanya we decided to go see this lady Carolina who was a former (?), and long story short, she is dating a Mormon who lives in Washington and she told us "well I guess if I'm going to marry a Mormon, I should probably be one.  When can we (she and her son) get baptized?"  Haha!  I wouldn't say that exactly counts as a broken heart and contrite spirit, but we can definitely work with it.  We set a date with them for the 24th of May.

I love my bike  -  Dad you would be so proud!

Another cool story: So for forever I've been having to go see this oral surgeon to get checkups on my  implant like every 3 months, and of course while we were there we would make small talk with the assistants there.  I didn't really think much of it.  I mostly just wanted to get out of there! But this week the Dr was running late so we started talking and the office manager brought up that she was actually baptized when she was a kid in Germany! What the?  Then she started talking about all of the good memories she had growing up in the church and how good she felt there, then the other secretary pops her head over and starts saying that she totally agrees, because she used to go with one of her friends when she was a teenager. They both were just going on and on about how much they love the Mormon Church and how boring the Catholic Church is...haha. Anyways then I got to bear testimony again about the awesome plan of salvation and that can make us so happy in this church! I would like to say that we then invited them to come back to church and now they are both meeting with the missionaries...but sadly after all that they both said that they just want to stay with their own church (even though it's boring...?).  BUT it does go to show that no effort is ever wasted.  I'm sure their time will come soon.

The famoso sushi buffet of Lewisville
Lastly we spent Friday morning cooking with one of the members to go and take a home cooked meal to one of our less-actives who lives in a teeeeny trailer and doesn't even have a place to shower! We made him a hearty Guatemalan chicken dinner and drove it up to him during (yet another) storm.  The smile on his face was priceless:) I know without a doubt that when ye are in the service of your fellow being ye are only in the service of your God :)   I love being a missionary!  This is God's church restored to the earth today through the prophet Joseph Smith. I know it with all my heart! les quiero mucho!

<3hermana bonny

 jerry quote: "hey i know a movie that has God in it. 

                   "oh you do??"

                    "ya. GOD zilla!"

haha love that kid.