Friday, July 29, 2016

Speak kind words...Recieve kind echos

Hello lovely friends and family of mine!

I hope you all had a spectacular week. I know it was an eventful one for my fam. Shout out to my big brother and sister law for GRADUATING COLLEGE!!! WOOOO. Wow talk about a huge accomplishment. so proud of you two! and well all of you! your'e a great bunch of people. 

Anyway just going to hit you guys up on the highlights of the week! We only had one intercambio this week because we had our interviews with the president. So those were normal and nothing out of the ordinary. We'll just jump ahead to the great stuff :) The first interviews with President Kimball were this week. A little different than from what President Egbert did but they were still cool and spiritually uplifting. He testified of Christ in our interview. He told the story about Jesus when he washed the feet of the 12 Apostles. The then asked what that meant for me. I finished my answer then President asked me "Will you give me permission to wash your shoes?" I was a little startled but responded that he could. It was a moment of silence as he kneeled down and washed my shoes. I cannot explain what I felt. I felt a love. A feeling of dedication. A feeling of peace. The spirit was present and it witnessed to me that Jesus is the Christ. He loves us. And he will do anything for us. 

After I went with my companion and Sister Kimball to visit all of the houses in our zone. Only because Sister Kimball still doesn't know Spanish that well. I had to translate and holy smokes. My English is TERRIBLE! I basically don't remember anything. I forget that it's possible. And poor sister Kimball some of the time I replied in Spanish without thinking about it. So look out USA, you're basically getting another foreigner in the future haha

And last of all. the BEST part of the week. We visited some of our old investigators and they have never accepted to go to church. It's a goal of the zone to talk about the sacrament and focus on that. So we decided to only talk about the reason we go to church: the sacrament. When we invited them they said..... YES!! so then we had to confirm on Saturday that is was the real deal. They confirmed it and wait for it....wait for it.... THEY WENT TO CHURCH!!!! WOW GUYS I'M SO HAPPY! After the lesson with them I was literally grinning from ear to ear. probs made it super obvious but I was STOKED! Seriously. We've waited about 7 or 8 weeks. The Lord does answer prayers. Sometimes it just takes time.  

i love this work. I love the Lord and I love the power of the sacrament. When we truly understand why we go to church, we will never want to miss a Sunday. Thank you all for well everything! LOVE YOU!!!! 

Oh to and to explain the title. when we really are speaking with a heart full of love and with a sincere desire, we will receive the echo. We will see the work progressing

Hermana Cross

Reaching the Cerro
Comp and I
The best "missionary" dog.
He always follows us around with a ton of energy to do the work!
Did I say I love doggies!
73% milk?  and the other parts...?
My trainer met a good friend of mine
(Elder Riley McClure from Fort Collins).
What a small world!!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Better than Super Powers

Another week in the glorious work of the Lord!

it was a good one. A super fast one. Time is FLYING. But without a doubt it's because the work is AWESOME. Hmmm well it was so fast that I hardly remember what happened. oops! sometimes that happens (a lot of times).   

This was our first week having intercambios. Man I just love intercambios. It's a great chance to see the other sisters, leave the area, see the progression in other parts and learn new things. An experience I am beyond grateful for. In these intercambios I learned that the spirit guides us a ton. The spirit is crucial in missionary work. We contacted a reference and well her husband died about a week ago. What a blessing it is to just tell someone that there is a perfect plan that God has made for us. Seriously it's the best. Also that even when someone isn't in your plans, if the spirit says "Go there" we go there. if the spirit says "Go here" we go. The impressions are not huge. They are small. Very very subtle. We passed some girl in the street and I just felt I should contact her. It wasn't an experience super spiritual but she gave us her information and was open to the idea. So we knows what could happen. Even when people reject us, that person needed, for some reason, contact with the gospel. So that happened in the intercambios :)  

President & Sister Kimball with my comp and me
Also we had a change in the way we have our district meetings. The classes before, we would receive a super awesome letter from president and then we would learn something from that letter. But pres Kimball doesn't write letters. He wants us to have a class focused on our needs as a district. Let me just say that our district leader is super inspired. We talked about loving every person as a child of God...because that's what they are. We had pictures of our family and used them to do a practice contact. Pretend that we were contacting our family. it really opened my mind and helped me change a little bit more. But the best was at the end of the class.

Our district leader said that sometimes we need a priesthood blessing to help us in our areas and give us more hope. I haven't received a blessing since I left for the mission. We one by one received a blessing. It was incredible. Something so special. I knew Elder Fox was inspired because he mentioned somethings that I was truly hoping he would say. Without saying a word to him, he was impressed to say those things. The priesthood power is better than super powers. 

Really those were the things that called me attention this week. WE are having a hard time finding our investigators. But sometimes that's how life works. We have looked for some previous investigators and we will just keep working hard with our eyes focused on the Lord. Thank you for your love and support! Lots of love!! 

Hermana Cross

I love puppies!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Hurricane San Juan

WOOO new week! there were some super great experiences this week.  

Yesterday was full of adventures. A normal Sunday in reality. Our investigators went to church so SUPER score. We taught them as well after church. just super prepared. Manual is kind of in a rough patch with his progress. His wife (well not yet) doesn't want to get married because of things that have happened in the past. But we have promised if he does what the Lord asks, she will have a desire to listen and get married. Also in sacrament meeting, we heard from some great talks...from who? THE FAMILIA CRUZ!!!! AHHH so awesome. love them. okay. now in the afternoon is when the adventure starts. We were far from the church and we needed to get there in 15 minutes. it's possible. but, we decided to take the dirt road path so we didn't bikes up hills. all was great. but then, rain. a little rain. then a little more. then a lot. then HAIL. all while biking. there weren't houses where we were biking. It was a little painful but I was just laughing so hard. partially because I was in my white skirt and it got covered in mud. it was a blast. But we finally pulled aside a house. The kind lady let us into her house. now THAT is a person who understands ¨love thy neighbor as thyself¨ super kind. it made me feel super happy. No worries mom, I went home and changed after so I wouldn't get sick. But it was seriously like a hurricane was going to happen. there's no ocean but with a  grody canal near by, who knows what could happen hahahaha.

We had our first leadership counsel with the new President. It was super cool. It was more talking and
participating than it was listening and writing. It was a neat change. We had it in the presidents house. Holy cow. It is a dang nice house. I just wanted to ask the stranger running in the neighborhood what he does for a job because wow.

We talked about the new motto for the mission. We all know that with Pres Egbert it was obedience with exactness and now its The Culture of Christ. What does that mean? well it means a lot haha. President Kimball is super loving and has a heart full of love for us and the Savior. And I'm super pumped for what will come in these following months.  

The Culture of Christ. What is it? Well, the focus of President Kimball is that the missionaries can have a true conversion. Yes, it is important that we focus on others and those we teach, but the thing is, we can teach and convert others, but if we ourselves do not become converted, we may live the same life that is not in line with the Savior and on the path to eternal life. Yes we helped others become converted but now in this time, we must also come to know our testimony of the Savior. 

These are some questions that have crossed my mind in the process of learning about the culture of Christ.
  • Is my testimony weak? or is it strong? 
  • Will my testimony last and stay strong even during my trials?
  • Do I focus on the Savior throughout the week? And in every moment?
  • Do I prepare for the sacrament and repent daily so that I am worthy to partake of the sacrament?
There are many more that you can make. But in reality, we need to focus on Christ in all we do. If we are members, we have promised that we will always remember Him. Sometimes we really do need to ask: what would Jesus do?

I just want to share my testimony with you all. It's simple. But I know that Jesus is the Christ. I know He is our Savior and He is the Savior of the world. Through the atonement we can be saved. I have felt the healing power of the atonement and I know for certain that God forgives everyone if we are willing to act. I feel the Savior's love every day. I love this work because it is His work. I say all of this with a smile  because His true gospel brings me a joy I cannot explain. I know this life is short, so we have to work really really hard so we can have eternal life (Moses 1:39). He lives! I know it! :) 

Hermana Cross

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

4 Check Marks in Heaven


Wow what a fantastic week!! It seriously was THE best. I'm just grinning from ear to ear writing this email. Let's just say this entire email will be about one family. The Cruz Family. the best family.

We started the week out normally. We had to finish all of the lessons with the Cruz fam. It might have looked like we were powering through all of the topics but you do whatcha gotta do sometimes. But in reality they don't have that hard of a time understanding the material so its all good! 

In the following days it was all about the preparation for the baptism. Interview practice, the
The Cruz Family
interview, and the actual baptism! First, the interview practice. I've said it before but I'll say it again. The interview practice is my favorite lesson. The spirit is so strong and you can really see how they have grown spiritually and how they have changed. The best is when they are explaining the "why" such as "do you believe that God is our loving heavenly father and that Jesus Christ is the son of Go and savior of the world" and they said with certainty "YES because...." and we know it's the true testimony of their hearts. The only bummer deal was that the dad wasn't there...and we know hes the one that takes a little longer to understand,  

Fast forward to the actual interview. Because there was 4 of them, the zone leaders came to help out our district leader. Talk about more nerves! I felt sooo nervous. You never know how the interview will go. so they were all in process. The mom Leonila and her husband Isidro had a little tiff before the interview. Add on more to me nervousness. And then Hermano Isidro was in the interview for like an hour. MORE nerves. But when everyone got done, we got the 2 thumbs up that they were all good to go! SCORE! we decided to celebrate and buy some delish tacos.

Best Day Ever!
Then the baptism. OH HOW LOVELY! It was so great. there were lots of members there to support us. i felt the spirit so strong. And then after the baptism (which went soooo smoothly) they each bore their testimony. wow. the son and dad were emotional. So cute. The best was when Hno Isidro (the dad) gave his testimony and said "I know this church is true" okay everyone. why was that so cool? only because he NEVER said that during these past 6 weeks of teaching him. I began to doubt honestly that he was ready to be baptized but HE WAS READY! I just needed to have more trust in the lord and in this Hermano. I LOVE THE CRUZ FAM!! 

Okay also, this week we met the new mission president. I'm going to miss President Egbert. It might have seemed like he was strict (I thought so too in the beginning) but he has helped me change. He was loving in everything he did and never gave up on us. A true representative of Christ. Shout out to them. love them sooo much. Anyway, President Kimball and Hermana Kimball are great too. they have left a lot of family behind to be here. He has been a bishop 3 times. once in a family ward and the other in 2 YSA wards. They are suepr extremists. have ran 100 mile races and he has done the iron man race a ton. they sure know how to live the word of wisdom haha. but all in all I'm excited to see what happens in these following months. 

And last of all, we've been having 2 investigators attending church that aren't in our area. with time and some confusion later, we are now teaching them and preparing them to be baptized the end of this month. WOOOO PROGRESS!!!  

I love being a missionary. I love doing the lrods work. I KNOW this church is true. I don't need to write lengthy paragraph to say the simple truth. This is the true restored gospel of Christ,. What a privilege it is to share it every moment as a Representative of Christ. 

Have a great week everyone! love you all!


Hermana Cross

Ahhhh...what a great day!
Taco-bout the Gospel!
Super Torta
Thanks for the package Mom!
Pimped out bike helmet ha ha - sea feliz. sea mormon
View of San Juan and Tepa

Friday, July 1, 2016

Reaching New Heights!

Hello everyone!

Wow what a week! I cant believe we are starting another one. This following week is the last one in our cycle. super speedy fast right? I can't even comprehend it. Also it's super awesome that my cousin Will (shout out to him) has finished his mission with honor. I'm so lucky to have great examples in my life :) 

This week. Hmmm let's just hit some of the high lights!

We decided to discover some of the colonias that we never have visited this week. WE just kept
The Super steep hill!
biking along a dirt road and all we saw were corn fields. corn and more corn. We then reached a little town and asked someone where we were. Turns out we reached our area limit haha. We then biked A TON! and a lot of it was up hill haha. We ended up climbing up a super duper steep hill. I swear I could just go climb a mountain now. These people basically live in one. we found some people to teach and they are super good! The Lord does prepare people...even the ones that live super far away. I'm super glad that my comp had the spiritual prompting to visit that area and even head up the super hill...because I really didn't want to. The spirit does talk to us, we just have to listen!

Also this week we had our last intercambios and last studies. It's been a good learning experience. I guess we'll see if this all continues next cycle!  

We have met some interesting people this week. For example a super christian. She was a contact form the beginning of the cycle and wow. She has her own church and she was just going at it. Just attacking us hard core with her words. She said Jesus wasn't a prophet, that we have all we need right now, that she has met with Mormons before and said, and I quote, "I prayed and the holy spirit testified to me that your church isn't true." I just wanted to say "what holy spirit are you talking about? I'm 100% sure its not the right one" Sometimes I think Satan wants us to crack and give up. But you know what Satan? I KNOW THIS CHURCH IS TRUE. It's a blessing to have such knowledge :) 

And last of all, our family of gold went to church and they are going to baptized on Friday (if the interview goes well). I'm super duper stoked! They are prepared to accept this wonderful gospel. I love them so much. And a new investigator went to church! Even with her 3 little ones. It just shows that if you truly desire to know, you will act without excuses. 

We talked about forgiveness on Sunday. It was a beautiful topic. I love forgiveness because I know Christ has atoned for us so that we can be forgiven. I know the atonement is real and I feel its healing power daily. I invite you all to read and ponder on the scripture found in 3 Nephi 13:14-15 

Have a great week!!!

Hermana Cross

Chubby Bunny!
The Traditional Pic
Love this District of mine!
Inside of a Combi
The Catholics have a festival to celebrate Sanito San Juan
Fireworks and music all night long - we live a block away!
The canal is just a little gross!
Smiling even though we were dying up the steep hill!