March 3, 2014 – Paraguay
I guess I can`t complain about the rain after hearing your experience! Sounds like the Gilbert Temple dedication and the cultural celebration were amazing! I`m so happy that you are all being so blessed! I just want to cry every time I read your letters because they`re so beautiful. Even when you all have challenges, you all have the faith to overcome them and are all learning so much. I couldn`t ask for more!
CONGRATULATIONS SARA ON BYU!!!!!!!! WHOOO WHOOO!
Today we ate at the fancy restaurant, Pizza Hut, (No joke it`s the swankiest place in town.) as a zone. It was yummy!
But this week was kind of difficult. I think the hardest thing for me, and what I`ve been struggling with most in my mission, is the concept of grace. To accept that I can`t be perfect and that I have limitations. I love the talk that Brad Wilcox gave about grace, which is especially applicable to me as a musician. He talks about a child who is taking piano lessons. The Mom pays for the lessons. All that she wants is that the child practices. She has already paid the debt and all she wants is that we practice. The child doesn`t ever pay this debt. The child is going to make mistakes, and lots of them. Never does Mom say, If you can`t play in Carnegie Hall, you might as well quit. No.
It`s the same with us. Christ has already paid the debt. All He asks us to do is practice; practice being perfect like Him. We`re going to make mistakes, and lots of them, but that doesn`t matter. What`s important to Him is that we are trying. That is how we show our gratitude for this incredible gift He has given us. If we can`t be perfect today, He doesn`t tell us to quit, He just says, keep trying!
The hard part for me is having patience with myself. I`m so patient with investigators, and my companion, and annoying Elders, But when it comes to myself I`m like, what the heck Hermana Anderson? How can you not be perfect? What`s wrong with you? Are you human or something? Haha. It sounds so dumb when I write it out, but it`s true! But on the other hand I don`t want to expect anything less from myself.
I don`t know! What helps all of you out?
Yesterday in church, in Relief Society, we were talking about how to carry the burdens that we have, and the help we can receive from the Lord. One of the Sisters in the ward, who is one of the most faithful, long suffering that I know, said that this week she had been feeling really sick and lonely, that there was no one there to help her. She said that the Hermanas missionaries came to her house and were literally an answer to her prayer. That Hna Anderson shared a scripture that she felt spoke just to her and made her feel that she wasn`t alone.
I didn`t know she was sick. We walk so oblivious of the needs of others. But I was glad that I was worthy enough to listen to the Spirit to share the scripture that I did. We had a plan to teach about something else, but I scratched that because it didn`t feel right. The Lord really does make us instruments in His hands if we let Him.
Even though we are rejected so much, it`s moments like these that make everything worth it.
But this week we went out and found a family. We are teaching this English class and these kids started talking in broken English, like, What is your name? And we wanted to invite them to the class (and to be baptized 😉 ) So the kids went inside to get chairs for us to sit down. They went back inside to get something and the grandma who had been sitting there stacked all the chairs up, took them inside and slammed the door in our face. What the? hahaha It was so funny.
And THEN we were walking by this same house later that day and a window was open. This kid, 16ish years old called out to us and we walked over. We invited him to the English class. Then he started winking and saying all this creepy stuff. So I was like, OK, I`m going to give you a law of chastity and Word of Wisdom pamphlet. That`s what you do with creeps. He took the pamphlets and BEST PICK UP LINE EVER. He took the pamphlet and said “Hey, I have chastity.”
I love you all so much! I`m so grateful for your letters every week!