Friends and Fam,
The kids were baptized yesterday! It was sooooo great, plus we didn’t have any almost-disasters like with Emerson’s baptism. So that was good. Each of them looked suuuuuper good in their baptismal whites to be honest. Mario (13) and Trinidy (10) were baptized by an member in the ward. Hermano Higuiera and Angel (11) was baptized by Elder Stark. After the service they came up to us and told us they felt as if they were “really light” and that they just felt good inside! Hint: that was probably the Holy Ghost. They’re set to be confirmed next Sunday. We should also be having 2 more convert baptisms in the ward next week so the future is looking bright in El Camino! It’s been great to see all of the missionaries’ hard work pay off recently. Being the district leader has been sweet because it helps me get super tight with all the missionaries and I get so much happiness from the success of the other missionaries.
With that, I wanted to share a small miracle this week that lead to the gorditos actually being able to be baptized yesterday. Essentially the way this week was set up was that we had to stop by every day this week in order to be able to teach all the remaining lessons so that they could be baptized (bad planning on our part, don’t follow my example future/current missionaries). Thursday afternoon we got a text telling us the man that was usually present so we could visit them wasn’t going to be able to be there. The rule for us is that man over the age of 18 has to be present at all lessons when we teach a woman or underage kids. Legal issues or whatever. So the next hour was basically a scramble to find someone to bring so we could teach them so that they could be baptized on Sunday, but we literally couldn’t find anybody! I think we must’ve called about 20 people, no lie. We were on the point of giving up when we decided to say a prayer to ask God to help us find someone to bring with us. I kid you not, as soon as we mentioned that in the prayer we got a phone call…safe to say we ended the prayer pretty quick and answered it. It was a member we had called to bring that didn’t pick up, but he told us he could come! As soon as we hung up the phone Elder Stark and I flipped out for a good 15 minutes haha. We went over that night and had a fantastic lesson. Moral of the story: prayer works! Try it out sometime, I’d strongly suggest it.
I had a fun experience while on an exchange with one of my Zone Leaders, Elder Wall. We were walking down the street when a man of African American decent came to us and starting talking with us. Pretty soon his language started to turn fairly (very) obscene and inappropriate. Right then and there, I straight up called him to repentance: “Excuse me, when you’re talking to me would you please try to clean up your language? Thank you” haha. He was taken back pretty hard: “Wow, alright then” and soon after walked away in shame. Kids: stand up for your beliefs! Don’t let none of that nonsense be around you. People respect that (for the most part).
Fun fact, I’ve finally figured out how to roll my “rr”s!! It took about 3 months of practicing but since now I’ve got it down I exaggerate it wayyyy too much when I speak haha. I’m pretty sure Elder Stark is sick of me doing it around the house but I’m too happy about it to stop haha. The shower technique I talked about a few months back truly works. It does wonders in fact. Another fun fact: for the first time in about 4 months a Chik-Fil-A chicken sandwich entered my mouth. Holy cow it was so good. I was starting to lose hope that I would never taste one again (for 2 years) but it turns out there’s been one just up the street from where we live that’s about 5 miles away. Go figure. Pretty soon I’ll be planning whole days around being able to eat there more often haha…I seriously love that place. (That frosted lemonade thing they just came out with is suuuper good. Buy it.)
Something I’ve been studying about a lot the past few days is Christ’s visit to the Samaritan woman at the well. It’s recently turned into one of my favorite life of Christ stories. Being a swimmer and all in the past the topic of anything to do with water relates pretty well to me haha. John 4:10, 13-15 is now probably my favorite scripture in the Bible. When the woman asks Christ why he would ask her to draw from the well for him he replies,
Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.
Basically she flips out and asks something along the lines of “Where can I get this water?? You’re not a well right??” Calmly, the Lord replies:
Whosoever drinketh of this water [the well’s] shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
I think the woman’s reply is so cool. Right away, without hesitation, she says:
Sir, give me this water,that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.
This story really makes me ponder on the nature of missionary work. Why am I here on my mission? What am I doing? And then I realized, we are the only people in this area that has the key to salvation, the key to eternal life. It talks a lot in Preach My Gospel that every single person on this earth has a desire to find the truth, but they just don’t understand that yet. They all have a thirst for the truth. And we are the only people that has the water which can truly quench that thirst: the complete Gospel of Jesus Christ. A little later in the book of John, Christ makes a declaration to the people that hit me hard as a missionary.
John 7:37 If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.
Short and simple, but soooo deep. Christ is offering us the water that can quench all thirst: spiritual, emotional, even physical. We just have to go to Him and ask for it! Our purpose as missionaries is to make that journey a little easier for everyone, we bring that living water to the people so they can decide whether to partake or not. So with that I decided to make things a bit more fun around here and I proposed a “team name” if you will for my district: #QuenchCrew. I know, pretty good right. (They were the only two words I could think of that rhymed so just go with it haha.) Get that trending on Twitter or Insta or something by the way. Everyone’s had fun with it so somehow just with a name morale has gone through the roof haha. Good times though. So I’d just challenge all of you to truly ponder on those words of our Savior, how has your faith in Christ quenched your thirst for greater purpose, happiness, whatever? Then commit yourself to continue to partake of that living water, but also to share that with everyone! The #BecauseHeLive initiative is coming out pretty soon so check that out when it comes out this Friday. Then share it with you friends! Share that living water you have with all around them so they can have the same opportunities you have.
Hope everyone has a great week. The work is making great strides around the world! Are you going to take a part of that as well? Love you all, enjoy your week.