Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tranquila, no mas

Oct 21, 2013                                        

The Elders and Sisters serving in Hermana Latham's branch traveled with some branch members several hours by car and then on foot to visit other members in a neighboring town called Curarrehue and make them lunch 
 This is the scenery they saw on the way.

Thank you so much for your letter and also the recipe!  Sister missionaries really are the best.  :)  Many of the sisters I have known have been some of the best girls I've ever met.  Like you said, to serve as a sister missionary takes a desire, and many of the girls out here serving just love Christ and everyone else so much, and it's so evident.  My companion doesn't like to share her feelings and talk about things.  So it gets tough because I am having a hard time relating to her.  But this week we got the chance to spend time with the other sisters in our zone and I really learned a lot from them.  They gave me advice and hugs, and they are just so loving!  One of the sisters is from Peru, and she is honestly the sweetest person ever.  I love to see her smile!
For the Primary, I would really love some stickers.  We have colored pencils and we draw every week (because I don't really know a way to teach in Spanish for 2 hours).  Do you have any ideas?  The past two weeks I have had four girls, a 10 year old, 2 9 year olds, and a 5 year old.  So it's really hard because they're at different levels.  And my companion isn't with me...she has to be in Relief Society.  So my temporary companion is the only young woman in our branch, and she's really shy, so she doesn't help me.  I want to help them feel the Spirit and I'm doing the best I can!  I feel kind of stressed out about it...but I think it's been okay so far.  
They advise us to tell you guys to send all of our mail to the mission home address.  The package address is different from the letter address, though.  I don't know about pouch mail.  My training is 12 weeks, so I will be here until at least New Year's.  My companion says that I'll probably be here until mid-February (three transfers).  Yes, Pucón is a super tourist trap!  Once summer gets here, there will be tons of tourists.  The volcano attracts a lot of people, and it's situated right on a lake, so there's beaches people can enjoy.  They can go hiking in the nearby mountains, and then there is also skiing on the volcano (it is snowy year round).  So the center of our town has bajillions of little touristy stores, and there are American food restaurants, and all that jazz.
So the good news it that I have an hour to email and I'm allowed to email friends!  WOO!  Today I sent a bunch of pictures and answered a bunch of emails, so this email will be shorter than last week's.  
For the first week and a half or so, every day at least one person would tell me "tranquila, no más," and it drove me nuts.  The direct translation doesn't really make sense, so what it basically means is, "be calm, that's all."  This is a stressful life!  So when people said that to me, I just wanted to be like, ARGH!  But at our training on Friday, one of the assistants to the president said it to me too, and so I decided I'd give it some thought.  We were on the bus back from Lanco, and I was just looking out the window at the beautiful Chilean countryside and thinking.  In my life, everything that has ever been stressful, that I ever thought I couldn't do...Jesus Christ helped me to accomplish it.  So I thought about it a little bit more...and if I decide to have faith in His ability to help me, then I really don't need to be stressed out, because I can know that He is there.  This thought entirely changed my perspective.  I could feel Him saying, "tranquila, mi hija."  Be calm, my child.  He has a plan and I will be able to do this!
After this day, all of my days have been better.  He helps me to remember the scriptures and the Spanish words that I need to bring the Spirit.  I have been able to teach gospel principles in Spanish through the Spirit, and on Sunday I gave a talk in church and was able to share the Spirit.  When I trust Him, He trusts me to be His representative.  
We had a really awesome branch activity on Friday night, and we are going to read the Book of Mormon as a branch in four months!  Everyone is really excited.  
I have SO much more I want to say but I don't have time!  :'(  I will write more next week.  I love you all so, so much and I miss you a lot!  I miss your voices and your smiles.  But I trust in Heavenly Father that this is exactly where I need to be right now.  I hope you will find joy in putting your faith in Jesus Christ just as I do every day of this mission.

Abrazos, Hermana Latham
      Diguenes-these are the weird mushrooms I told you about that grow on the trees.

                                        They're sweet and spongy and orange on the inside!
                                                         Ward BoM activity!
                             Hermana Latham and Hermana Nappa with their baby investigator
                                                                Our house :)

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