This week was another great one! It is really starting to heat up here which has been nice...but it makes me scared for the summer that is just around the corner. I am not sure if I am ready for such heat and humidity ha. And just our luck after a very nice week of pleasurable weather it has been raining pretty hard today, and there was insane lighting like every 3 seconds this morning. Apparently this is something the Argentinians are used to.
My new boyfriend
This weekend we had a district conference in Venado Tuerto (about 3 hours away from Villegas). We returned to Villegas after the conference in a hot and stinky bus. It was full of our members from Villegas as well as the members of a nearby city. Also I have a new boyfriend- he is 3 years old and I think it must have been love at first sight because right from the start he was right there with me, choking me with hugs one second, getting mushy banana in my hair the next second, drooling all over me the majority of the seconds, making funny facial expressions, pulling my hair followed by his mom giving him a small beatdown, then repeating the process 30x. It was a long bus ride to say the least. But he was sure precious amidst his slobber and overflowing energy.
The bus ride to Venado Puerto
Our mission president and his wife spoke at the conference as well as many other leaders, and the chapel was so full! It was a sight to see! President Zanni is a spiritual giant, He truly does speak by the spirit, and so does his wife! Hermana Zanni talked about their time as mission presidents, and about how many times she is caught missing home, a place where she had grown up and lived all her life. Her words made me think about my home and I had the same thought of love for my home and for the people who are associated with home. But then she compared this to the premortal life, and about the time that we spent there with our Heavenly Father and with Jesus Christ, and how much greater our homesickness must be. Our Heavenly Father is patiently waiting for us to accomplish the work He sent us to do, and waiting on the other side for us to return from our temporary home, to return in His presence and rest in the arms of His love.
This week I have been studying the life and Atonement of Jesus Christ. I find that no matter how often I study this, I will forever stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me. His life is our road map, and He is our guide. There is nothing that we go through that He has not already led the way. Neal A Maxwell states, "I testify that He is utterly incomparable in what He is, what He knows, what He has accomplished, and what He has experienced. Yet movingly, He calls us His friends." He truly is our friend, wanting nothing more than to help us, to listen to us, to strengthen us, and to ultimately help us return to Him and our Heavenly Father. He cheers us on day by day, rejoicing when we accomplish something, and "the joy of the Lord is your strength." I find joy in the Lord and in this gospel. I am finding joy in this mission and in the miracle of this restored gospel. I am learning to love the little moments, and to find joy in all things: this does not mean that I wake up at 6:30 every morning with a giant smile on my face, but it means I am keeping an eternal perspective while taking things day by day. I find joy and laughter in our morning runs, when we ate ASADO in Venado Tuerto, when a plumber came to fix our leaking toilet and stayed for about an hour and then told us that it was free, when we teach English classes every friday and I am reminded that at least I can speak one language almost perfectly, when we mix up words that sounds the same but have very different meanings, when we have to wake up in the middle of the night to catch a bus to Venado Tuerto, when my pants got stuck on a members chair for a solid 5 minutes, when an Hermana had to crawl under the bathroom door because she could not get it to open, when we horribly mess up food, or when we make it just right, or when we are too poor to make food and we sneak the leftover bread from the restaurant into our bags(well more like me sneaking it in and Hna Whitworth dying from both laughter and embarassment) . This mission is full of many moments and I am finding joy in the little things. I am laughing uncontrollably a good percentage of the time, still trying to fix that, but I am just having a great time being a part of the Lord's work and being companions with Hermana Whitworth. It's a great time to be a missionary!
Love you all, thank you for your prayers! Have a great week and find joy in the little moments, and don't forget to laugh along the way!