Monday, November 3, 2014

Week 57 -- Rain...and a Humbling Week


I can't believe that I have 13 months now... 5 months to go.. and that sounds like so much less than 6 months to go... wow. I really don't believe it. 

I'm soo jealous that you are going to the So You Think Tou Can Dance tour!!!! WHAT! 

There is nobody outside to contact here... and supposedly (at least what I have always heard) is that we aren't supposed to just knock on doors to contact because it could be dangerous... But I don't know. So, yeah, it's hard to contact people when there are no people. 

Oh, last week when I said we talked about having "honest days" I meant honest, um, datos, which are...statistics?  I don't know.  Our numbers for the week and stuff like that.

1.  How has the weather been this week?  Did you get any flooding in your area? 

It was rainy the whole week. I hate rain. And so we had to put out scriptures in plastic bags to keep them from getting wet. I had to wear the rain poncho that Hna P gave me when I got to Honduras and use my umbrella (which is still broken but I'm waiting for the new one to get here) and I realized that last year I wore my Mary Jane Crocs and I don't have those anymore but  those kept my feet dry and now I just have sandals... so my feet get wet. But please don't send me anything because my the time it gets here I won't need it anymore so don't worry. I will be fine. It didn't flood that much but a little but.. it is supposed to get really bad during this time of the year which really scares me.  A hard area in flooding will just be even more hard... but whatever. 

2.  How is D doing?  And her son D?  Does he still have a baptism date on the 8th of November? 

Nope... So they didn't come to church this Sunday so we pushed the date back. He already has attendence but it's been a month now since he has come to church so that makes me way nervous although he reads and the mom is super excited and supportive. But I finally met the dad last night. He is actually super pilas but right now he's been really tired so he hasn't come to church but he seems like he really does want to come. So we are going to keep working with them and D (if he comes to church) will get baptized on the 15th. 

3.  Tell me about some of the people you contacted/taught/worked with this week.  Did you see the family again that you felt inspired to go back and talk to that had visited with the missionaries two years ago? 

Yeah, this week there were like no new people.We did go back and visit that family and we met the son who is less active and the sister is really, really receptive and seems like she wants to come to church.  They are SUPER nice.  We don't have anyone who is progressing right now. But such is life. 

4.  Did you get to explore the areas father away from the centro this week? 

Yeah, we did. We explored some little colonias. The thing that I really don't like about this place is that there isn't really a big colonia that is good to contact. There are a lot of little colonias that are easier to contact in but they are small so there are less people or there is a big colonia where we live that is really closed off so it's so hard to contact in. But, yeah, we have gone more into the mountains this week to find a Menos Activo (less active member) and to explore a little bit more and it's really pretty here. 

5. What did you do for P-Day this week? 

Today we cleaned the house really fast and went to el Centro to shop. So where we live is called el Centro but there are no shops or anything and Puerto is really el Centro and has all the shops. So we went into Puerto to go shopping. We were going to take out money but Hna A couldn't do it here and the ATMs didn't work but we still went and did a little shopping anyway. I bought something for Grandma. And I bought a cheap shirt and a perfume that was SUPER cheap here, 100 lemps which is like 5 dollars so I figured what the heck and I bought it. And another little decorative thing. But I just felt like buying thigs this week. Then we went and ate with the elders at Wendys. And now we are here. 

6. What miracles and tender mercies have you seen this week? Answers to your prayers? 

Yesterday we went to visit a menos activo that lived really far away. Like after the bus stop you have to walk farther. And we figured that the buses would still be running... so we got to their house and we had a really good cita (appointment) and were talking and getting to know them and all of the sudden... Wait a second.... is there a bus? And they told us that no... the buses had stopped an hour ago. But luckily they are one of the few people that have a car and so they could bring us home, lol, and it was a nice American truck!  Woohoo! But, yeah, it's really dangerous to walk around when it's dark and rainy so I don't know what we would have done if we had gotten stranded out there... so it was a miracle that he was home and that he could take us home because otherwise we were pretty sure we had taken the last bus in just to get there. 

7. How has someone else blessed your life this week? 

An hermana made us a hot oatmeal drink when it was cold and rainy and we were soaked. 

8. How have you served someone else this week?  Are you able to find many opportunities to give service in your new area? 

We got to help a menos activo cut out stuff for her art class. She was making wreaths for them to decorate so we put glitter on them and cut out reindeer antlers. It was really fun and relaxing. I also played the piano at a baptism this week and the bishop asked me to start playing for Sacrament Meeting...  So I have to practice and play every Sunday now. Oh, and we sent books off to Jorge, the missionary library so that he can read Jesus the Christ. Since Hna A was in Santa Rosa, too, she taught him the lessons after he got baptized. 

9. What was the best thing that happened this week? 

I dont really know.  Probably that President Dester came to our district meeting and I always love getting to see him. 

10. What was the funniest/funnest thing that happened this week? 

Talking with the elders is always funny. 

11. What was the spiritual highlight of your week? 

We had a cita in the mountains like 30 minutes away in the morning on Saturday and we didn't really want to go because we weren't sure if they were actually going to be there and it was in the mud and flooding and yeah, but we decided to go anyway. And we got there and they were home and were sooo sweet. They just thanked us so much for our visit. I know we were inspired to go visit them and that they really did appreciate that we came in the rain. Also, we went to visit a different less active member and we just started talking to her, actually the hermana of the man who gave us the ride home. And she has been inactive for a long time! And we just went to talk to her and we read Enos and applied it to her life and at the end she told us that she had been planning to tell us that she didn't want us to come visit her anymore but that after the lesson she felt like we really had been talking to her so it was okay if we came back again. I don't know...I just felt like we were able to follow the spirit and teach her according to her needs. 

12. What did you learn from your personal study this week? 

I learn a lot from Hna A and her study of the Bible, probably because she understands it a lot better than I do, lol. But I am reading a lot slower to try and really read and study what is being said. I'm at the end of Alma right now and I just love it. It's so epic. I think a lot of people don't like reading those chapters but I learn so much from them and how there are so many strategies to apply to our lives  I don't know...they're just great. I did realize that I am so glad that I am serving in another language because if I was serving in English I think I would be bored and that I wouldn't love all the hymns and reading the scriptures and that I would not want to be a linguist anymore, lol. 

13. Do you know that I love you and I miss you? 


14.  Do you ever hear from Hna B?  I don't know why I was thinking about her this week.... 

Yeah! She writes me every week still. She's doing well but shes freezing cold, lol. 

15. What was the best thing and the worst thing you ate this week? 

I don't remember anything gross... or anything that was just super good either. 

16. What was the most beautiful thing you saw this week? 

The sun... for a whole 2 minutes. 

17.  What do you and your companion do in your "down time" (the little bit that you have)? 

Talk. She likes to talk. Or we cut out pictures from the Liahona magazine to put in our scriptures. But we usually don't have much down time. 

18. How was church yesterday? 

It was alright. I had to play the piano so I was really, really nervous. There weren't a lot of people there because it was raining and we didn't have any of the people we are teaching come to church...  And one of the recent converts of the elders was flirting with me and wanted to buy me bread and juice after church was over... good thing it was the Sabbath day!

19.  You said the beach was dirty, and based on the pictures you sent you were definitely right.  Is that normal?  Do people go hang out on the beach there (when the weather is nice)? 

Yeah, for Honduras that is normal. In Omoa it is cleaner. They blame all the trash on Guatelmala... but it's their own trash, lol. But, yeah, people are at the beach in nice weather, dirty beach or not. 

20. If there aren't a lot of people outside and you can't knock on doors, what approaches do you use to find people? I've seen lots of things online with missionaries in different areas of the US setting up outdoor displays -- like elaborate chalk drawings of the Plan of Salvation, posters, singing, etc......can you do things like that? 

I'm sure we could but we haven't done anything like that so I don't know.  Last Christmas we set up a caroling stand in the park but other than that we have'nt done anything like that. 

21.  Have you seen any traditional Honduran Christmas ornaments or nativity sets?  I was thinking that might be something neat for you to bring home for your future home/family.  

I was actually thinking that!  But I saw one today and it is HUGE, like it would have to go on an end table because it's big so I didn't want to buy it. But I haven't seen one other than that one... but maybe a little closer to Christmas. I have been buying home decorations though, lol, from Honduras. Not a lot of stuff but little cositas. 

I miss our dogs.  :(  Gere there are 3 dogs that hang out outside our house because they belong to the owner of the house and they are like our pets, lol.  Their names are Geo, Rocky and...I don't know the other one. They are very friendly. One is a rottweiler, the other is a mix and I'm not sure about the other one.

Well, this week was hard but I did learn a lot. I saw this week a reflection of who I was 6 months ago. I saw the impatience and the negativity and I didn't like it, to be honest. I would like to say that I wasn't at all like that but I was. It was good to be able to see how much I have learned and grown... and, well, that I still have a long way to go. I feel so bad for my companions who had to put up with me in those times.. I didn't realize how things like my negativity really just put a damper on my companions and propbably their motivation to contact or something like that or to leave with the members. I don't was like looking into a mirror and seeing the person that I used to be. It's nice to know I have changed, though... but I still have a lot to learn. I can't believe that I only have 5 months left. It seems like an eternity but I know it will go by so fast. 

I feel like this week I was able to learn a little bit more about our Savior. It was so rainy and all the citas (appointments) fell through practically and we resorted to knocking on doors--and we had to look for a reference anyways. I had heard that people usually feel bad for missionaries in the rain and so they are a little nicer and that rainy days are better to contact. Well, I had heard it but I had never actually tried it.  So we went to knock on doors... at least 7 casas (houses). Not one of them wanted to speak to us. They answered and told us that they didn't have time or that they didn't want anything. People made fun of me for being a gringa and serving as a missionary here. It was horrible. I just felt so bad and I just wanted to be at home on the  couch with a blanket with a hot shower or hot chocolate or something. After all, I didn't have to come. But I just remember thinking that this is the Lord's work and that it doesn't matter if they reject me. He, too, was rejected and even by His own people. It was just very humbling to me. I know I complain too much and that sometimes I really don't want to be here, but I know that I am learning more about Him all the time and that I truly can follow in His footsteps and do His work, if only for a short time. 

I hope you all had a happy Halloween... and where are all the pictures of your children??

Hermana Gisseman

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