Friday, September 23, 2016

¡Viva México!

Happy Monday everyone!! I hope your week was spectacular! Mine sure was! It was full of fun filled and spiritual moments. The best type of moment’s haha. The Lord never fails to surprise me with new learning experiences. As you all know, this week I have been in the mission ONE YEAR! That's absolutely crazy. I feel like I've been here little time. Time….man;  it's crazy. But I absolutely LOVE the mission and all of the joy that it brings me and those I love.

I have learned a ton of things in this past year but it would be an incredibly long email if I wrote them I don’t have the time haha. So I'll just state a few things that have happened and something that touched my heart.

  • This week was Mexico’s independence day but really nothing was super duper exciting there. I know it would seem like super crazy and dangerous but here in San Juan it's super chill. It was worse when it was San Juan Day haha.
  • My companion got a little bit sick with the same thing I had a few weeks ago. We hung out in a member’s house for a little while she was going through the motions and then headed home. I have learned being in the house just kills. So much more fun going out and doing the Lord's work.
  • Zone conference! That was incredible. President Kimball is so loving and brings such a special spirit. I really have learned more about being dedicated and understanding what it means to live in the "Culture of Christ"
  • Another new baptism date!! Yep there is progress here in San Juan!! Our other baptism date fell and now he's not really interested but it's okay! Because that just means there are more people super ready to listen!
Okay so those are just a few bullet points of what happened. But what I really want to share is a scripture that has opened my mind and my heart.

Malachi 3:3
3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness.

The process of making silver is by putting it in a very hot oven. One person has to sit there, watching and watching until it is finished. In a story, a woman asked a refiner how he knows that the silver is finished. He said "That's easy. When I can see myself, I know it's ready."

Just like the refiner, God is watching us and has put us in this so called "oven." We are here to try to be perfected, even as he is perfect.(3 Ne 12:48) We will pass many difficulties and many other things but all is for our good. We must become even as our Father in Heaven. We have great worth and He only wants the best for us. He has the perfect touch and the final say. I know God lives. Jesus Christ is His son, and only through His name can we be perfected and saved. I love this work and I will give even more in these next 6 months. You can count on it!! LOVE YOU ALL!!

Hermana Cross

One year!  Time flies by!

Saturday, September 17, 2016


Hello hello! What a great week! It flew by. I'm really starting to slack off on the whole write in my journal every day. I've had to do catch up work. I can't stop now! Almost a year doing it and now it isn't the time to quit! Hahaha. So for this reason my emails have been shorter.

And this is no exception haha. Again, sorry for that.

Anyway. This week was pretty full of exciting "try new things" experiences. First of all, we had to the opportunity to plan our own zone training. Usually we give what we learned and it's basically a repeat but for those who didn't hear in the leadership council. This time, it was personal. That made it sooooo much cooler. and sooooooo much more spiritual. We met with the zone leaders to plan with them and it was like working in a school group project. But it wasn't terrible like those projects can be. It's a lot more edifying when you are working with the spirit and a focus in the benefit of others. You really have to lose yourself to find yourself.

The next day was the zone training. It was a success!!! We talked about having an effective teaching. It really hit me that a new opportunity to help this child of God, starts from the moment we talk with someone. From that moment and forward, we are the Lord's tools. We work with the spirit and nothing more. We have to listen. We have to invite. We have to avoid all distractions. We have to do the Lord's work. There is nothing better than doing the Lord's work!!

We also did a super fun service activity! On Saturday, we hiked up one of the mountains and planted trees!! We got up there at about 7 am and worked for about 4 hours up in the mountains. There are a
Happy doing service
ton of nopales...a type of cactus. And the best part was eating fresh tunas! The little red things on the cactus haha. SOOOO GOOOOD. Nothing can compare. it was beautiful planting little trees and saving the planet. But seriously the world is a gorgeous place. God created a world so amazing and sometimes we don't take the time to help it flourish. I was reminded by the little activity that faith is like that little tree. We planted a lot. And we probably will never see it finish growing or even become a strong tree, but I know that in the future there will be one. that is missionary work. We don't have to see the fruits of our labor to know we are working hard. If we are diligent, the spirit will testify if we are doing all we can. Numbers cant and wont tell us. Only the sacred gift of the Holy Ghost will whisper the truth and penetrate the heart with it's quiet but strong power. There is always a lesson to be learned. Even in a small service activity :)

Mexican thumbs up for you all!
Last, we had the chance to go to a Noche Mexicana...a Mexican night. Celebrating their independence day just a week earlier. But it was so fun. We painted faces, watched people dance, sang a Mexican song that we didn't know and helped prepare food for everyone. We met new people and just had the chance to spend time with all of the wonderful members. I seriously just love them so much! 

That was basically my week with a few highlights. I am always amazed at the many blessings God gives me. I could never make it through the day without the security of the gospel. It seriously blessed me in every moment. The work is glorious. The Lord is generous with His blessings, but obedience and diligence is key to receive. I know this church is true. I know this work is of the Lord. I am beyond blessed to be serving a mission. Nothing else I would rather be doing. Have a great week everyone!

Hermana Cross

Little trees!!! (almost planted them all)
"Faith is like a little seed...if planted it will grow"
oooo....honey, honey!
while the family was in foco, I also was remember that beautiful land
TUNAS - Cactus fruit, considered a delicacy 
Good morning - comp pic
A look at the Cerro

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Here a little, There a little

Wowza it was  a little bit of a stressful week not gonna lie! We traveled like non other this week and we had to do our intercambios back to back. Just a lot of stuff going on here. But the mission never gets boring so there you have it!! Sometimes it's full of travel and a little bit of problems....but without a doubt we keep moving forward!!!!

Hmmm well really I want to share a bunch of stuff but at the same time  I feel like I don't have a
Intercambios back to back
bunch of stuff to share! The majority of this time was spent in other areas and with other companions. I was away from San Juan for 2 whole days. Doing intercambios back to back is a little insane. I did do one with an american sister so that's always super fun to talk in English and share some experiences.  And it was weird being away from my area for so long. When I got back it seriously felt like coming home. Home really is where the heart is. Love the people of San Juanito. 

Unfortunately, we didn't have investigators in church and so Armen's baptism date fell and now we are on the search again. Satan likes to discourage missionaries. I believe it's his favorite game. And really that is what has been happening in the lives of people close to us as missionaries. 

This week I've really just have come to learn more of the savior and of his infinite love for others. I have seen in this week a few sisters super stressed and some having personal problems. But it really is amazing to see the Lord working miracles in these sister missionaries. It fills my heart with more love for my family and for the Savior every'time I hear these experiences that these Hermanas have. I know the Atonement can heal. I know it can give us strength and power. It is a gift. A gift that cant be bought. It is given. And it can be shared.  I just want to share with you all a quick quote that I found this week that has really touched my heart.  

Never let anything so fill you with sorrow as to make you forget the joy of the Christ risen --Mother Teresa

I hope you all have a great week. I invite you to ponder on the Atonement and really how it has affected you. Lots of love and lots of prayers for all of you wonderful people!!!! 

Hermana C

The "traditioooon  tradition!" picture
Shout out to the Mama :) (The Mexicans love you too!)
Beautiful San Juan
Throw back to when my companion fell on her bike

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Better than Cake

Here we are again. Another Monday! I hope your week was just as great as mine! 

There was a lot of good experiences this week. and some that weren't super fun...but we'll get to that in the end haha. 

To start, my birthday was super good. My companion made me some pancakes and sang to me. Also
the member we ate with made my favorite food (mole verde) and we ate cake. Also that day was jam packed with lessons! That was the cherry on top. And to make that day fun and different, I had a great start to the day with a contact. We met some guy while looking for a reference. My companion told him it was my birthday. So what did he say? "Felicidades!! I don't have a cake but do you know whats better than a cake? A HUG!!!" and he went in for a giant hug. I did all I could to avoid it but I just stayed still while he gave me a hug. He said "Jesus hugged everyone. He's going to be mad with you because you didn't hug me" That just made me laugh.  

So what other things are "better than cake?" Well let me tell you!!!
  1. meeting twins by accident and meeting their cousin...and all 3 have an interest in learning about the gospel...with a super powerful prayer that started it all'
  2. the first intercambios of the new cycle. Knocking on a door and finding new and accepting investigators.'
  3. When a young couple (a 18 and 19 year old with a 1 yr old baby) finally accept to get married so they can be baptized. Now all they need is to go to church! And realizing for your self the importance of families and the true plan that God has for me and for each and everyone of us. 
  4. Feeling the spirit so strong while teaching a less active family about eternal families until the point there are tears in every ones eyes. I left that lesson with true hope that they can become active again 
  5. Understanding the atonement even more. Reflecting on the giant impact it has had on my life in these past months here in the mission. 
  6. Being able to defend the truth. I felt the need to talk to a guy outside of his house. When we started talking with him, he was trying to argue with us that we really don't know who Joseph Smith was and bash on the church, but we testified our guts out. I left wondering why the Holy Ghost prompted me to talk to him...but then I realized it was not only to help him, but to help me strengthen my own testimony.I know that this is the true church and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. 
  8. We had stake conference and I saw a ton of people from my area Actopan and an investigator that never went to church but now is going with her husband!! The work continues! 
  9. A member of the 70 talked with the stake about how we need to prepare more and become a more righteous group of people. Prepare our children who will be the future members of the church. He had the little primary children of the stake sing "love one another" and I mean wow. My heart was filled with peace and joy and I had major tears. The spirit testified so strongly that we have more work to do. 
  10. And the last of all that maybe isn't super great or better than cake but a fun story to tell. Soooo I might have maybe thrown up for the first time on the mission....but in the street. There were a few drunks coming close by while I was sending a message to Sis Kimball. They were asking to use our bikes and I thought "Don't come close because I'm going to throw up" and then walked away......and yep. I called it a day after that. But my angel companion helped me out :)'
That's all I've got my friends. it was a fantastic week. Thanks for everything!!! LOVE YOU ALL!!!!
Hna Cross 

Hey I'm 20!
New outfit!
Hey Piggy-piggy, come back!
Comps - blue and blue