Monday, July 18, 2016

The wedding pianist.

Eventually I'll explain that subject line.

So I've got a little more time to respond today cuz I don't have as many emails to respond to(hint hint;) haha I'm just kidding but I'll make this a super detailed letter so yall can know a little more bout Santa Elena. 

Last Pday was a good one. For Pday here we are almost always combined with the other zone that is close by. We are the Cayo zone, and the Benque Zone always comes to play sports with us. That is super cool because my dear old friend Elder Ostler is the Zone leader in Benque, so I get to see him and also Elder Harris who is in our group. In my zone Elder Kreutzer(also from my group) is also there and so we have a party. Last week we played american football(important specification) and it was SO hot. nearly burned to death, but It was worth it.

Pday nights we always go out to work. At 7:00 we have an FHE with the Branch President and the rest of the Moody family. There is an uncle who is not a member that we have been working with and trying to help fix up his life. 

Tuesday  was a pretty solid day. we worked with several of the members with the Family History like I said before, and it is working well. People are learning and getting excited. 

This week we had a pretty amazing experience with a part member family, Shawn and Reyna Vazquez. We started what could have been any other lesson with them, and we were sharing Helaman 5 with them. We read the chapter together, and we had some really great discussion with them and the Spirit was super strong.

When we were about done, Reyna turns to us and told us that we had shared exactly what she needed, and that she had had lots of big questions and prayers answered. I was humbled. We hadn't done anything special in and of ourselves, but the Spirit was present, and the family was sufficiently humble because of some pretty tough trials they have been going through. The Spirit was teaching them with words me and my comp couldn't hear.

And then Shawn(the one who isn't a member) spoke up and said that this had been the most inspirational lesson he's ever had. We helped him to recognize that it was the Spirit, and he expressed his desire to be baptized. Soon. The 6th of August is the goal we are working for right now, but he hasn't quite accepted the exact date yet.

It was amazing because, this wasn't the result of just one visit. It was the culminating event of more than a year of him struggling and learning and growing until he reached this point. I'm grateful to God that I was permitted to be there when it happened.  Also it gives me hope for investigators that I've had in the past that haven't been baptized, yet, because I know that eventually they will reach that point too. 

So anyways we've still got some things to work out before Shawn is baptized, but I will let you know as things develop.

then Wednesday was immigration day, so we were in Belize City pretty much all day. 

Thursday we mowed the lawn for a member that was moving houses, so it was fun using a lawn mower again.

We had a cool experience this week as we were walking around in the hot sun. Nothing had gone right that day, and all of our appointments went through, and no one wanted to talk to us or let us in. so we were walking looking for news when we saw some guys in an empty lot picking up trash. We went to help them out, and It turns out they were cleaning it up to build a new church there. It was a group of Baptist missionaries doing some service, and we hopped right in and started to help. It was great to help and talk to them, turns out their from Oklahoma, and they were noticeably impressed with these two Mormon boys. Although we didn't share much of a message with them, I hope we were at least planting seeds for future harvest. I also learned a lot from how they love and serve God's children.

And then, Saturday. 

That was the weird day.

We had a baptismal interview in the morning for a baptism the sisters had(cool teen named Arlen, I'll tell you more another day.) and that was normal. but then at 12 we were supposed to help set up for this wedding right. No one shows up until 12:30, when they show up just to tell us to wait till 1. so we go eat lunch and come back. Waiting again. At2:30 they show up and the thing they needed our help for took literally 5 minutes. So we leave to go try to get some work done, when we hear," Bruddahs!" It was a guy named Emmer that is going to be baptized in Corazol soon(just another area on the opposite side of Belize. Who was stranded in Santa Elena. We helped him find the Branch President, and we set out to get to work. By now its 3:30 and we went and saw a less active family, the Bowdens(who totally came to church yesterday!) and had one other "normal" lesson. Anyways, then my comp had to go to the bathroom SUPER bad, and wanted to go to the church. I warned him we would never be able to leave, but he needed to go super badly so we went. While we were there, President Moody asked me to play the piano and say the closing prayer "so we wouldn't have to leave." and we were officially attending the wedding. Somehow the sisters got there too, and we were all at this wedding. The thing is, it wasn't a member's wedding. It was the daughter of a less active and her husband, who I think goes to a different church. That wasn't a problem though, we are always happy to have a wedding in the church! but as we sat there it was just kinda awkward as missionaries, ya know? They were kissing and singing christian pop, and we even got to sing along! It was a great and new experience for me!

but it doesn't stop there. Afterward we had to set up our little branch's baptismal font(which kinda looks like a swimming pool, but it says on it, so it's totally legit!) and we had no idea what we were doing. but we got it figured out. So now its 7:00. We went out to work, but noone was home. so there we are, sitting on the curb trying to call people and see who is home, when Tony walks up. We had never met him before, but he is a very down to earth guy that needs some help changing his whole life. We gave him a book of Mormon and I will tell you how he progresses! Goes to show that sometimes God directs us to prepared people, and sometimes He directs them to us!

Well if that isn't the longest weekly letter ever than my name may or may not be Elder.

I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and that if we build our foundation on Him we can not fall!

Love you all.

Elder McFarland

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