Monday, December 1, 2014

no se desperdicia ningún esfuerzo

                                                                                                                    November 10, 2014

¡Hola hola!

It's so fun to hear all of the news from back home!  It sounds like everybody is doing great!  That is so cool how Abby did the Halloween cookies.  I want to do that next year (in all of my free time as a college student...ha) but anyway it looks super fun!  I also want to go to Dress Barn when I come home.  That dress is so cute.  And the wig too.  I can't believe that Ashton is in Paris!  Wow!  How incredible!  Also it's fun to see what everybody thinks of the angel pictures and my new hair.  I really like it long.  I don't know why I kept it short for so many years.  Oh, and you asked me why I was on so early last week.  We had to get out of the house earlier than usual to get some stuff done with Hermana Wadsworth's visa.  Have y'all officially fallen back an hour?  Because if so I am 2 hours ahead of you now.

I keep forgetting to tell you that I got the Thanksgiving card.  I like the stickers!  I wouldn't worry about the box getting here.  I think that the package address and the letter address are pretty much interchangeable.  I also got a mailer from Hermana Ball's mom!  She sent me some candy, stickers, sticky notes, and glow sticks.  I need to ask Hermana Ball for her mom's email address so I can write her thank you.  It was the cutest thing ever!  She said "just wanted to send some love your way and thank you for being a good companion for Hermana Ball."  Seriously, so adorable.

I love hearing about your Primary program!  Ours is on the 23rd and I'm playing the piano.  I haven't been able to practice with the Primary kids yet because for the past few weeks we have been without a piano, and this week when we had a piano, they cut the power in La Unión all day on Sunday.  So next week I will practice with them.  I don't remember what all of the songs are that they need me to play, but one is "La familia es de Dios," or "The Family is of God."  (Your favorite one!)

This has been a really great week.  Hermana Wadsworth and I have felt so happy!  After a few hard weeks with the contacts and the investigators, this week we found some promising new investigators and went to visit some old investigators who are rekindling their interest in the gospel.  We have been teaching a college student English, and we had once with her and her parents and shared a little bit with them.  Today we have another appointment and we are excited to get to share more with them!  We also met an older Catholic lady and shared with her a little bit of the Plan of Salvation.  Then we proceeded to have one of the funniest experiences of my mission...we invited her to be baptized, and when she got kind of frazzled, we told her about how it was a long-term goal and that she could pray to know if it was what God wanted her to do.  (This is something we typically do.)  But then she told us she was going outside to check on her chickens....and she brought in a bag full of fresh eggs for us!  I have never been given farm-fresh eggs.  So we are thinking she is probably not that interested.  But we also had a great contact yesterday and shared our testimonies of how the Book of Mormon is a treasure that we can use as a companion to the Bible.

Yesterday, four of the less actives we have been teaching came to church!  One of them is about our age and she just had a baby, so we taught her about baby blessings and she brought her son to receive his blessing.  It was so lovely!  Also, a recent convert got the priesthood yesterday.  What a great Sunday.

We had district meeting on Tuesday and zone conference on Thursday, and I learned so much!

In district meeting we talked about how "no se desperdicia ningún esfuerzo."  I'm not sure the exact translation of this (it's the last principle of Chapter 9 in Preach My Gospel).  But it means that no effort goes in vain.  I had spent the last few weeks praying that we would be able to help someone, and feeling like maybe we weren't fulfilling our purpose as missionaries.  But this principle really taught me that the Lord knows how He needs us to help people.  And if we are living righteously and striving to serve, than every one of our efforts makes a difference to someone.  I know this is a true principle for everything, not even just missionary work.  Kindness, patience, diligence, obedience, and all of the other Christlike attributes or actions are never in vain.

At zone conference I learned something very important.  I have always thought that the central word of this work and of this gospel is "love."  Everything, when it comes down to it, centers on love.  Our love for the Lord, and our love for everyone else.  But I learned that this work and this gospel center on Christ.  Which is not to say that it doesn't center on love...but rather to say that Christ is love.  He is the one who teaches us how to love.

The center of the gospel is love.
The center of the gospel is Christ.
Christ is love.

I am so thankful for my Savior's example for me as I strive to learn how to love each day of my life.  If you haven't yet, go on and read President Monson's talk "Ponder the Path of Thy Feet."  It is wonderful.  Here is the link to Pres. Monson's talk:

I hope that you all have a wonderful week!  We are excited for this week....especially to meet Elder Nelson on Wednesday!

I love you all so very much!

Abrazos, Hermana Latham

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