Every week we write the mission president an email, he responds and we can just talk to him. This last Monday I promised Presidente that I was going to try to find joy in my afflictions and look at the upside to everything and simply be obedient. I think Satan heard that and was like “Hahaha, well let’s just see about that.” (I guess I forgot to knock on wood.)
I bet you all know where this is going. My week had a few added challenges;)
Tuesday- I was ridiculously sick. I went to the reunion with the zone, and then we went home and I just threw up for the rest of the day. I had to run out of a few citas just to not throw up in their houses-hahahaha. After like 6 PM Davey made us go home so I wouldn´t get other people sick. That was a rough day, but we also saw a ton of blessings as we kept working!!! We had three people come up to us and say, “hey elders will you come visit me this day?” OF COURSE!!!!
Wednesday we had intercambios with Cipe Cipe another area in our district, and ELDER RIVERA CAME!!! He is so cool! He is from Peru, and has two months left in his mission, and he is training an Elder Swenson who is apporx 6´8″. HE’S HUGE!!! but Rivera came to our area Tuesday night and then Wednesday all day we were here in Bella vista. I LOVE this guy! He is super flecha, which means he actually follows rules, and It was super nice working with a comp who did everything right!!!! IT WAS SO GREAT!!! He also is a workout-aholic. We worked out so hard!!! So hard that I couldn`t straighten my left bicep until Sunday! It hurt so badly! So sore.
Thursday. Thursday was really super cloudy and I loved that, and because Elder Davey didn’t want to leave, he went back and slept and I thought, ‘well better wash my clothes to not waste time.’ So I went out in a super thin white shirt and washed clothes (his and mine) for about three hours. LET ME TELL YOU- CLOUD BURN IS A REAL THING. WHEN THEY TALK ABOUT IT THEY AREN’T JOKING -IT CAN KILL YOU. Haha
So basically I got bizarrely sunburned. Really badly. Like I started wondering if I should go to the hosptial bad. I know it was dumb. But really? cloud burn with my entire neck and back with blisters? hahaha RIPPERONI. From Thursday until well… today, I can’t move without trying not to yell. Trufis just hurt so much. I have blisters all over my shoulders and I had to wear a suit jacket all day Saturday and Sunday. Putting that heavy thing on my shoulders just made me cry. Aahhhh – let’s just say it was a long week.
BUT I kept my promise. I told Davey that we were going to work just like normal. When my shoulders started bleeding through my shirts, maybe I cried. And when I put on my tie, I was dying, but I was determined to work. I KNEW /KNOW that the Lord blesses those who decide to act in faith. I promised to work, AND THE LORD TOTALLY BLESSED US!!!! We had an amazing working week! I prayed on Friday morning, when I couldn’t even put on a shirt without crying that if I went, and didn’t complain, that He would help put people in our paths. AND he really really did! We had like 11 new investigators this week, On Sunday, we went and taught Mijael who began to love the BOM and we asked him if he wanted to follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone who has the same authority that Christ had on the Earth. And he will!!! He is going to be baptized on the 4th– I am so happy!!! It was just such an amazing thing to hear his testimony. “I feel like ever since I have been coming to church I have realized this change in my life” WOW What an amazing faithful testimony! He is just so amazing for me:)
ALSO WE HAD A BAPTISM HERE IN BELLA VISTA!!! It was so special for me. We baptized Hermanita Julia, who is this little abuelita, who is so cute, but she doesn’t speak a bit of Spanish or understand it! It was crazy!!! She really did not want gringos coming and teaching her, so we went with a member and just sat in the corner . Hermano Tomas did his thing and explained some doctrine and she was like THIS SATURDAY I AM BEING BAPTIZED. haha OKAY! It was super awesome and I got to give the prayer in Quechua! I was super nervous, but it went just fine- I feel pretty crazy speaking Quechua, it’s so hard! For every letter there are three types, simple (no air leaving your mouth), aspirtated( normal sound), and then explosive ( a lot of air leaving your mouth). There are also 30 something letters in the alphabet, really nobody knows, because it’s from this ancient tribe, and basically people just try to write the sounds they hear.
Also potential change!!! This Tuesday we also had interviews with Preisdent Hansen and mine went really differently then everyone else’s. First I walked in and he just says, “Elder Hammond, I have been looking forward to this interview more than any other of these for the past few weeks.” WAAAT? He said I had like a 2% chance of staying in the area for the next cambio, because “he had a plan for me, wasn’t sure but had an idea” -so that`ll be cool!!! I am super pumped and really just excited for what the mission holds for me!!! I love the work, I love this gospel, I know that this church is true and the best way to strengthen your relationship with Christ! I know that its ture – WHY else would I be out here working so hard???
Davey said “Elder Hammond I am happy you´re my comp. I really am learning about being crazy dedicated to the work from you” I was so happy. because yeah I’m out here trying to change lives, that isn’t limited to Bolivians only.
I love you guys!!!! I am doing just fine here in Bolivia:) keep smiling and serving!