Thursday, January 27, 2011

Letter #71 - January 25, 2011

Just to let you know, I'm going to write the real letter tomorrow because we got back so late again and we don't have time right now. Just didn't want you to worry, but you're probably getting used to this bad habit of writing a day late. Okay so here are just a couple pictures of Sunilda y Juan and another family that we're teaching named Felix y Ruth.
Felix y Ruth
Sunilda y Juan. Sunilda and Juans son in the back is named Kervin and the daughter is Daniela. She is going to get baptized this week too if all works out right
We played soccer today and went to Presidents house to celebrate the great success of the choir. He also took us to a great mexican food restaurant. It was another P-day of traveling to and from Managua, but always great to be with Presidente and the missionaries. And oh how I love mexican food.

Tomorrow I'll tell you about the conference which was amazing. Pray for Sunilda y Juan to get baptized this weekend. Okay loves. Until tomorrow.


Sorry for the teaser email, but I didn't want to let you down by not sending one on Monday. We got back late and the plan was to still write but when we got to the cyber they were closing and only gave us half an hour to write, so now we'll see what I can pump out in the other half hour. Really the best thing this week was the conference.

The missionaries in the choir had to go to Managua on Thursday to practice one more time Thursday night and then be there early Friday morning. Which meant that we left Corinto at about 2:00pm and after the practice we stayed with the hermanas in Ciudad Jardin! It was fun to be there in my old house with Hna. Cano and Hna. Rippstein (her new comp) and also Hna. Willford, Hna. Avila, and Hna. López. We had a great slumber party and I got a nice surprise when the Medina Family showed up at the door to say hi! It was so lovely to see them. I don't know how they found out that I was staying there. Actually, I had wanted to go out and visit a bunch of people but we got back too late from the practice, so I was feeling a little sad.

I don't know if I told you that Aldo y Karla got baptized a week and a half ago! I am so happy for them. And Norlan and Maryuri are getting baptized this Saturday. Hopefully Sunilda y Juan también, so basically, even though I couldn't/can't be there in Ciudad Jardin to see those two families get baptized, my heart is full to overflowing that they are entering the waters of baptism and making those covenants with the Lord that will bless their lives forever.

Friday morning we were all excited, waiting for the apostle to come and Pres. Arredonde had asked us all to prepare questions for him. Before he arrived, we were all seated and pondering, listening to the prelude music and when Elder Christofferson walked in we all stood and sang We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet. It was such a powerful feeling and the spirit was strong as we walked up one by one to shake his hand and look into his eyes.

Elder Falabella, Elder Duarte, and Hna. Christofferson also spoke briefly. Some things I liked from their remarks were the emphasis on the habits we are making in the mission and continuing to do these things after we get home, that these things are for all our lives, not just good ideas for missionaries. Elder Falabella said that a habit forgotten was never a habit, it was an obligation. Hna. Christofferson made a really good remark about being ready to receive all that the Lord wants to give us. We only receive according to what we are ready to receive. The question is, how much do we want? She talked about our study time in the morning and how important it is to be immursed in the scriptures. How much are we spiritually prepared to receive? And that the "word of God" is not limited to written scriptures, it also means personal revelation. We receive the word of God when we receive revelation personal.

Elder Christofferson was magnificent. He spoke humble and simply but testified so powerfully. He let us ask questions for the majority of the time and it was incredible to watch him listen and ponder after a
question was made, waiting for the spirit to reveal the answer. Someone asked (actually it was Elder Goodman, jaja) how we can know if we have really been converted on the mission. I thought it was a very good question and the answer was so beautiful. He talked about having the spirit in your life and
being able to recognize it as a good sign of conversion, but then he started talking about the Savior and doing the will of the Father. He said that when a person has removed every motive from his life except that of doing the will of our Father in Heaven, they have achieved true conversion. He went on to say that if Christ's one true motive was not doing the will of the Father, He would not have been able to complete the atonement.

He said that when we return home, we will be able to note the difference in our conversion, but we will not have yet arrived. It is a life-time process. He said that to keep our families of converts in the mission and our families at home strong, we should help them to understand the gift of the Holy Ghost and it's role in our lives. He said that they have to keep doing the things that they did to plant the seed in their hearts in the first place. The process described in Alma 32 has to continue after baptism and throughout our lives.

He bore testimony that the Lord is personally guiding this church and that He is an active leader, there each day guiding in very specific ways. The Lord takes care of this church because it is the most important organization on the earth. He bore powerful testimony of the Savior and of our magnificent callings as missionaries, preaching with His power and authority and in His name. He also left us with an apostolic blessing to receive the gift of faith in a greater profundity, that we will feel more deeply His love and that as we preach in His name, we will feel it. He also blessed us to achieve celestial marriages and eternal families and to be faithful servants of the Lord throughout the rest of our lives, and that His angels will guide us and keep us on the path to eternal life. Those were just the blessings that my heart was longing to hear.

He finished all too soon, and as we sang the closing song I was left wishing he would speak again. Unfortunately I didn't get my wish but he did allow us to take pictures with him zone by zone. It was great.

The other best thing was the FHE that we had with Sunilda y Juan last night. After leaving the cyber we ran to their house because we were about 15 minutes late and we found them with their scriptures and hymn book out, just about to start. Wow. Sunilda had planned down to the hymns and the refreshment. I have never been in an FHE so well planned and so spiritually rich. I was left with my jaw dropped. She had picked a lesson from the book Principles of the Gospel about the life of our Savior, Jesus Chist and had all the scriptures marked with little papers. The comments of the family, explaining the scriptures was so amazing. We said very little, just adding a comment here and there. Basically they taught us lesson three, the gospel of Jesus Christ right down to enduring to the end and the importance of baptism. Um... I think... they're ready. I just am praying that the divorce will finalize so that they can get married!!!

Anyway, my time is up but I just love you all to pieces. I love my mission. I can't believe all the amazing experiences I am having and the ways that these people are changing my life. I don't know what I would have done without this experience. I don't even want to think about it.. hahaha.

Being a missionary is the best thing in the world - period.

Love, Hna. Crosland

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