This week I was thinking a lot about how missionaries are kind of in a different world from everyone else. It's great because it's easier to focus in on the things that are the most important, but it also creates challenges because we have to respect that everyone else is in the "real world". When we're working with the members here, when we're inviting people to church or to meet with us, it's like "oh yeah they have other things to do too besides talk about the Gospel". It's hard to find that balance sometimes but it's possible. And most of all it makes me really grateful to be a missionary. It makes me realize what things are actually worth my time. I'm really thankful for all of my experiences I've had so far (I have a lot more work to do still!) and I'm enjoying the whole being separated from the world thing.
But don't get me wrong, it also has its disadvantages. For example this week there was a city-wide water shut-off for one night at we didn't know about it until we were already out working for the day. There's a picture of me with all the water we had for the whole night. We survived. BARELY. Nah we basically just brush our teeth and go straight to bed at night. Too tired to do anything else, so it wasn't really a big crisis. That's another reason we're different in the mission...we don't really care about things that used to worry us. (Especially what colors match...let's not even talk about how I'm dressing these days).
The truth is, anyone who knows about the Gospel of Jesus Christ should also be different from the rest of the world. We need to be examples of the happiness it can bring. We have to be different! I know I've said this before but I just want to say it again. It's so easy to get distracted and forget who we really are. But I would like to be able to look back on my life and say that I was faithful to what I knew. That matters so much more that what someone else thinks or whatever other justification I can make. Keep going strong!!! The Lord is hastening His work and it's so exciting to participate!
This week was full of interesting experiences - a disastrous family home evening, a strange man trying to talk to me in English and showing us his dog that is the only one of its kind in Cauquenes, heart-attacking a member family, having a 5-minute surprise b-day party for Hna Vieda (one of the other hermanas in our house) because we all finished our planning really late and had to go to bed right after, eating lots of fried things, helping a sister make sopaipillas (kinda like scones) and completely ruining them, getting a "new" (it's pretty old) washer, and trying to entertain kids in Sacrament meeting with the connect-the-dots game I used to always play with my siblings. I've learned in the mission that I actually have no idea how to handle kids. When I was younger I used to just tackle my brother when he was bugging me. But we 10000000% can NOT do that as missionaries. Being able to work with them is really important, too. We normally are teaching adults, but if their kids are running around they won't be able to pay attention. And Jesus always said that we need to be more like children! That's my tip for anyone preparing for the mission - learn how to work with kids. And also be humble like a child. I'm still working on that one too.
I love this work and I'm so grateful to be here in Chile. This is the only place I want to be!
Love you all, thanks for supporting me and doing all that you're doing at home.