Monday, November 23, 2015

Week 39

Hey hey hey!

Ok, so TBH I´m feeling V disanimated to write an email about my week right now, which is a high key bummer on account of right now is the allotted time. I´m real sorry. This week was actually pretty good though, and we´ve had a lot of great moments. My comp continues to be really great and I´m honestly really enjoying my time with her. I´m actually just gonna copy and paste her weekly email here so you guys have a more spiritual account of what went down this week. And then I´ll just fill in a few random details first (so you´ll essentially have two records of the same thing #Nephi #Lehi #thewillofGod)

#whenyourmomisamoderndaypioneer: So cool story I forgot to mention last week is that there is this joven in the rama here named Fernando and we recently had a lesson with him in which he was talking about how it´s hard for him to come to church because he is only 16 and is the only member in his family. And then I was like, "wanna know a cool story? My mom was a convert at age 17 (from a very Catholic family) and to this day none of her other family has joined the church. But she decided to be baptized and serve a mission, and because of her faith and desire to follow the Lord, all of her children have served (RaeBae), are serving (yours truly), and will serve (C-dawg) a mission. And surely we will all also raise our children in the church and also help them cultivate the desire to serve Christ and others. So don´t get discouraged that you´re "alone" in this, because you never are. God is with you and you literally can´t know the influence that you can have as a child of God committed to follow His plan for your life." So it was a cool lesson and everything went well. And THEN on Sunday, he was assigned to give a talk on missionary work. And he gets up in front of everyone in the rama and says, "I´m the only member in my family, but I know that I can serve a mission because Hermana Ross´s mom did it (and then proceeds to tell the story as I told it to him.) So how about that, mom? We honestly never know how far our influence can reach. That´s honestly one of the things    I´m the most stoked about for after this life. Seeing all the ways we helped/influenced people and never would have known it. But isn´t it such a #tendermery on the rare occasions when we catch a glimpse into how we´ve helped other people? So there´s that one for you #liahonaworthy

In other news, this week is Thanksgiving!! We actually ARE going to have a Thanksgiving dinner(ish) of sorts, because of our all-English speaking district! Yay! And obviously the Cranneys are 2 chill to let a holiday this important pass by. So obviously on the mission, it will still be a normal work day. BUT, we will at least get to take a tiny opportunity to celebrate what everyone knows is the second-best holiday. Big fan. And I really do feel grateful for everything right now. Like, every experience I´ve had on the mission (every HARD HARD HARD experience) has taught me a lot. Now that I´m in a better place in general, I can really reflect better on the past few months and see everything that I´ve learned. I honestly have grown in empathy x100, and I have an increased testimony of the Atonement, Jesus Christ as our Savior and friend, God´s love for me individually, the need for opposition in all things, and increased charity. I feel like I truly know what pain feels like now. And it has been so humbling. But so good. I can´t really say I feel relieved yet though, on account of I honestly think the mantel of being a missionary stays with you until the very end. And honestly it´s kinda a pretty heavy burden to bear at times. Like, if you don´t try to keep REALLY GOOD perspective, it can really, really affect your mental thought process. I´m sure every missionary knows the feel. But I really think it´s good for me to really learn what trials are. Like, really really learn. "The Lord will have a tried and purified people." So yeah, this Thanksgiving I´m feeling very grateful for the chance I have to sacrifice for the Lord and truly try my best to align my will with His. AND OF COURSE, the mission also has the awesome side affect of giving you increased gratitude for EVERY BLESSING YOU EVER HAD EVER before the mission. Like, I will never look at anything ever the same way. Family, friends, anything in the 1st world, etc. I appreciate it all with a depth that could only have been developed by giving it all up in the service of the Lord. So of course I miss it, but right now I´m mostly just grateful that I ever had it. And very, very grateful that I will one day have it again. But until then I´m content to chill out in the refiner´s fire #hurtssogood

Ok, well I love you all so much, and am SO SO SO grateful for you. Like, really. Have a hecka great Thanksgiving week and know that for as much as I wish I was there, there´s also nowhere I´d rather be. 

xoxoxoxo 5ever,
Hermana Ross

Ok, here´s more good info about the week from my companion. Good thing she speaks English, amirite?:

Some interesting stuff happened this last week. Basically we had some amazing lessons and... okay I need to back-up a bit.

So, Once Upon a Time our Mission President and  his asistentes gave us a study guide for Preach My Gospel and it sounds like more homework but it is AMAZING!!!!!!! We are so much more unified in studies and therefore in purpose as well. Our humble District of Horqueta, being as awesome as we are, decided to take it a step further and unify the members in our area. 

We have noticed some problems arising in the members of this branch, especially the youth. They basically excpect us to visit them on a bi-weekly basis and fix all their problems. They treat us like friends but with little respect. Not cool. We decided that we needed to be straight up with everybody and let them know the what and why of the missionaries purpose. Like, as much as I want to listen to people vent and fix the problems it's not my job. It's it Christ's job. And my job is to invite people to come unto Christ. Whether or not they accept that invitation is up to them. 

Anyway, this week we studied Faith. I love Faith. I used to think it was kinda lame (#gasp) especially when doing my Personal Progress but now it's my FAVORITE thing and I am never going back. Faith is really the first step to everything. Like, everything. And here's the dealio: Faith is not just a thought, word or belief. It's an action. We've all heard it, Faith without works is dead. And works without Faith, fault purpose.

So here's the cool part. We decided to visit all the members one by one and explain our new proposito knowing it wouldn't be popular but we went forth with Faith. And we gained a LOT of respect. Some still aren't huge fans and some we still have yet to visit but, so far so good. As missionaries our job is to do a lot of things. And it's not impossible (with God all things are possible) but it is hard. With this new proposito we are leaving a lot more resposibilty on the members. We will still help them but we aren't here to baby them or do it all for them. Which technially is more work on our part until we can get them up and running. But it the long run it's worth it.

Moral of the story: R-E-S-P-E-C-T is way more important than friendship. And in the long run, if you have respect friendship will just happen. And it will be the right kind. It might be hard to make that shift but I promise it's possible. Act with Faith. And I promise it's worth it.

Tell me what you're grateful for okay? I am grateful for bathtubs. I miss those things. 
I love you all! Hermana Lundberg

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