Tuesday, December 30, 2014

I´m Dreaming of a White Christmas.... The Temple :)

Gabby!!! She was one of my very favorite members in my very first area in san juan and I SAW HER AT THE TEMPLE. One of the tender mercies of the day. I cried a little.... hahaha

Holy cow I love you so much my dear great family!!!

Well.... this week was insanity. I feel like a ton of things happened but it was really all just part of one thing... THE TEMPLE. I have never seen Satan working so hard in my whole mission, which was actually a huge testimony to how important the temple must be if he is going to work so dang hard to make it so people don't get there. It was a crazy, beautiful week.

First off, I got a whole bunch of packages from friends and family this week, so I just wanted to re announce to the world that I really truly do have the best friends and family in the whole entire world and I am not even sure why or how I got so blessed, but thank you. truly, truly thank you.

Then.... the week was a whirlwind of stress. Tuesday through Friday were full of last minute lessons and printing off different forms and having people come in to print out there reserved names to do the ordinances in the temple. They also all had to come in and pay for the bus and such before Thursday, so there was a lot of frantic calling and coordinating so that they could get the money together.

When we started out the week, we had a list of 21 people to go to the temple. In the end, 9 went and 8 entered to actually do ordinances. Satan worked HARD. Some people weren't able to get interviews for their recommends, some people couldn't receive them (tithing kills here. It is so sad because no one pays it! I knew it was a problem because it is a huge focus in the mission. But it really wiped out like more than half of our original 41 person list for the temple. It makes me really sad. The church needs tithe payers! Because true discipleship requires sacrifice.) Some people couldn't get enough money together to go to the temple (which was so hard for me because it is like 50 soles which is not a lot, but it is for them. I just wanted to pay for them all to go! But I also have learned that if they don't sacrifice to look for the ancestors names, their dates, to get the money together, to be worthy to enter, it isn't worth it to them. It doesn't have the same affect. Sacrifice burns into you because it is something that hurts. something that isn't easy. Giving up something good for something better. Sacrifice is what refines us and makes us rock solid in the gospel. I think that sacrifice is the reason that pioneer blood and pioneer fire has such a huge effect in lives of people 8 generations down from the actual pioneers! Because sacrifice creates and cements something that can't be erased. IT is the refiners fire, and it is absolutely necessary). 
We had one person who was all ready to go, recommend and all, but then lost her recommend for a mistake this week. We had another guy who paid and everything, but then his crazy catholic family wouldn't let him go. It was insanity. I felt Satan working on ME. Playing on my weaknesses and on me and my companion and everything. It was actually almost funny, and in a strange way it almost made us stronger.

In the end, all of the Satan fighting was totally worth it. On Friday night, we boarded a SOYUS bus at 1130. We slept (sort of. Soyus is, I am pretty sure what hell is like. But it is also a character building experience so I am okay with it) and then at like 5 a.m. we got to Lima. At like 530 we got to the temple and we got there right at the same time as the caravan. We were all sitting in the dark, quiet visitors center where everyone waits until the temple opens. There were a bunch of people there from all over Peru and one group from Chile. It is amazing to see the effort people put in just to get to the temple. The spirit of happy anticipation to enter the house of the Lord was all over the place. It was energizing. Then, the temple opened at 6 and we went racing inside to start bargaining and pleading because we didn't  actually have an appointment (we found out that day) and so with a lot of prayer and sad eyes and me promising them that this would be a part of history and really having the church increase in Peru they let us sneak in our converts :) It was a huge blessing. Huge. Then, Hermana Bott got there with her converts from Ayacucho and I just about died with happiness. Tender mercy. I love Hermana Bott soooo much. I am pretty sure we knew each other in the Preexistence :) and I also got to give her a birthday present, her birthday is today :) So that was great. Ah.

Other tender mercy was that right after all of our converts had gotten into the temple, we were crossing over to the visitors center thing and I saw Gabby!!! She always came out with us in San Juan my first area and she is amazing. I love her soooo much. I just heard someone yell in like a super incredulous voice HERMANA BAILEY?!?! It was amazing. We also saw a bunch of missionaries from our mission, so that was fun.

Then the real fun started and the converts started to come out of the temple, all excited and smiling and just gleaming really. It was amazing. The mom of the family I told you about was able to do  a session for a family member, and it was her first time in the session in over 10 years. It was literally incredible. They all just came out and bore their testimonies and were just in awe of the temple and how beautiful it is and the amazing feelings they felt. I love them so much. I love the TEMPLE so much. This gospel is TRUE. The temple is.... magical. SACRED. It is the closest we can get to feeling our Heavenly Father here on earth. It is the end :) I am so grateful for that trip to the temple. If only to see the smiles on the faces of people who now GET IT. 

Oh family. I love you so much I can't even say. Oh my gosh.... CHRISTMAS IS NEXT WEEK"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I get to see your gorgeous faces in like a week and a half!!! Hahahahahah  I love you sooooo much!!

Have a great Christmasy week.

Remember that I love you. so so, sosososo much. You are my heroes and my best friends :)

I love you!!



I love you!!


I love you.

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