Monday, June 16, 2014

Howdy! Howdy! Howdy!.

Whoa! This week has been so busy! I don't think I've ever worked so hard on my mission! Tuesday we were fasting and had appointments and lessons from 8 in the morning until 9 at night! It was never ending miracles! We met new people to teach and were able to have such powerful lessons with people that we love! We were able to visit a woman from Cancun that a member is friends with and she was so awesome! We're hoping to see her again this week! We were leaving her neighborhood to another appointment and drove past a whole street of Dr Seuss paintings on the road walls, I was freaking out! My childhood all on one street! 

We were able to visit a woman we had met the week before and as we were teaching her and her family, it started raining REALLY hard but the spirit was so strong as they intently listened to us share the message of how God restored a prophet and all of His truth to the earth. The even cooler thin about that appointment was at the beginning the father said the prayer and it was way intense and the spirit definitely was not there and his daughter was in the kitchen on her phone not even paying attention to what he was saying- well we all felt prompted to sing after his prayer so we sang "More Holiness Give Me" and within the first verse their daughter came into the living room and sat beside us and we all just felt this overwhelming peace. The power of hymns is real my friends. We also knocked on one of their neighbor's doors and met Adrian and he is super cool! We taught his mom a few days later and they are so excited to read the BOM! Adrian's little sister Daisy is super shy and never talks when we ask her questions but she always gives us the biggest hugs when we come and go and won't let go of us for like 20 seconds! I love that family! Tuesday was a true example to me of how powerful our fasts can be when we have a purpose and what we can do and accomplish when The Lord sees that we're doing our best and blesses us. Also, we taught a woman that day who said that she doesn't feel comfortable in any church she's been to and at this point she doesn't know where she needs to be with her kids- I was able to share my grandmother's conversion story with her, about how she prayed and prayed to know what church to raise her boys in and had the missionaries knock on her door, and knew that it was her answer and that she had found Christ's true church. I was able to testify to Carminia that God has a place for her, that He has His true church on the earth. It was a very special experience. That night we taught our two favorite people Jose and Flor and had so much fun bc they literally tried to feed us everything in their kitchen, including Abuelita and pan, which I was more than happy to accept! Flor doesn't work Sunday and said she would come to church-yay!

Wednesday was a fun District Meeting and even though we have a lot of new faces this transfer, I really love my district. Later that day we had a crazy thing happen. We had a member call us, Francis- he's a little intense, and ask us to take him to the front office of some apartments he wants to move into so we could translate for him because he only speaks Spanish. Well as we're getting out of our car we see one of our investigators that we haven't seen in forever get home from work and so we went to see him after we helped our friend and not only was he home finally, but he immediately let us in! We taught the restoration and it was a really neat experience. His name is Jose and he's a single dad of the cutest little girl and needs the gospel. We had an incredible lesson later that night with Alex, one of our member's sons, who wasn't interested in the gospel before. When we first met him, he said he didn't believe in God, and then this past week he's begun praying and reading and has a belief in God now! It is so neat to see such an incredible change in him!

Thursday was a pretty intense day. That morning we got a text from Carminia saying that she felt like she didn't need to meet with us anymore because not everything matches up to what she was taught in her last church. My heart was so sad because just two days earlier we read the Book Of Mormon together after I shared my grandmother's experience and when we were done she told us that she felt like God was speaking to her whenever she read the Book of Mormon. It's hard to understand sometimes just how tricky the adversary us and how hard he will work on people to make them feel like this isn't God's true church- even after they've received witnesses that it is. He's such a tricky guy that Satan! Carminia said we could come see her one more time, tomorrow, so keep her in your prayers! That night we split up with Hermana Santiago and her daughter Mayra. Hermana Schmit and Hernana Torres went off with Mayra and I was all by myself with Hermana Santiago.  It was super weird not being with my companions and Hermana Santiago is so cute and little but she's a little intimidating! (Now I know how people feel when they meet me!) Well, it didn't help that all of our appointments fell through and that the less active we went to see ran in her house when we pulled up and hid- even though her toddler son was still out by himself! But we ended up talking with a woman we had met before.

Patricia. Paty, and Hermana Santiago totally hit it off and I just felt like the odd man out. I tried sharing something about the gospel and Hermana cut me off and said what I wanted to say because she didn't feel like I could express myself well enough in Spanish I guess :/ well, I almost started to cry, feeling like Hermana had no faith in me and my ability to teach, and I even thought to myself that I should just walk away and cry in the car. BUT, that is not what Christ would do. I sucked up my pride and prayed to Heavenly Father to please make my hurt feelings better and help me to know what I could do to bring the Spirit to Paty before we left. I didn't get to participate in anymore of the conversation but before we left I felt like I needed to sing a song.

So I pulled out my iPad and looked up "Asombro Me Da" (I Stand All Amazed) and Hermana Santiago gave me a weird look when I told her we were going to sing but as we sang, I noticed Paty put her head down and started wiping her eyes, then my eyes started to fill with tears and you could just feel the love of our Savior so strongly in the room. I promised Paty that the things that we teach will help her to always have that feeling of love in her home and she asked us to come back this Wednesday. I am so grateful for the Lord's help that evening and that I was still able to be used as an instrument in His hand in the way that I could. Once again, the power of hymns is real.

We had a trainer/trainee meeting on Friday with President and Sister Andersen and the APs (assistants to the Mission President) and it was so fun! We separated as trainers and trainees and I was so grateful because at one point they ask us what we're struggling with as a trainer and Hermana Schmit and I couldn't think of one thing! Hermana Torres is perfect! I love that Hermana so much!

Before we left, I was taking to my cute missionary friend Sister King and my heart began to break as I realized that it would be the last time that I would see her as a missionary :( I HATE goodbyes! We had a fun Friday night teaching- especially teaching a referral from the Elders, Victor. He used to be heavy into drugs and almost died, he's only 20 and is really changing his life around. He introduced us to his older brother Marco who is mentally challenged and I felt so honored to meet him. It has become even clearer to me on my mission how special handicapped people are and how they are truly the most valiant and pure in heart spirits.

Saturday was great- started out at the Pantry again and I just love how everyone is like our family now. There's a huge black guy named Hockett who did time for like 8 years but he's the biggest teddy bear!

He always tells us that he's got our back and him and a Jay call me "Sweet 16" because they can't believe I'm as old as I am. I love how everyone in the Pantry, those who are serving and those who are being served, are just trying to be better and have better lives. It's so amazing to see people for who they can become. There is a man who used to live under the bridge and go to the pantry for food every week, he was a musician and played on the streets. Well someone from Sweden was visiting and liked his stuff and now he's in Sweden playing sold out concerts! I love that we all have the ability to change and be the people we want to be. Dreams really can come true! After we finished helping at the pantry, we walked over to McDonalds with out friend Jay who also just got out if prison. We've been teaching him a little but for the past few weeks here and there and we sat down and talked about the plan of salvation. He had so many good questions and has a true desire to change. He said he knows that what we teach is true purely because of the examples that we are and the way he feels when he sees us, he said he just sees light whenever we enter the pantry- that was a really powerful thing to hear. He decided to get baptized on July 5th and we are so excited for him!! He really has such a humble and good heart. We had a sweet lesson with Elvin that night as well and planned on fasting with him the next day together to help him feel more prepared for baptism and have a date set.

Sunday was such an incredible day! Our hard work payed off and a lot of our friends came to church with us! Flor was there and loved every second of it! She was just beaming and some already knew some of the members! Elvin also came and brought a friend. The biggest miracle was that Alex Javier came- the member's son- and everyone was like "whoa!
How did you get him here?" And we just explained that we started teaching him and he wanted to come himself! I guess he's been super against the church in the past. We feel so lucky that we get to teach him now! We had such a fun time at a Father's Day lunch with our ward mission leader and his family- the Linares'- and the Requelmes. They are so much fun and Hna Linares taught us how to make Papusas from El Salvador and Hna Requelme made this incredible chicken pie from Chile.
I ate so much that I literally felt like I was going to burst! We went to the going away dinner later that night for Nestor who's leaving for his mission to st George Utah. We have been kind of teaching one of his best friends on Facebook and were able to teach him about Joseph Smith's first vision in the chapel after the dinner, it was a really neat experience.

Welp, if you're wondering why I write so much- it's because I don't write in my journal- this practically is my journal! Last week was incredible and I finally feel like I'm putting all of my heart and soul into the Lord's work here. I'm going to keep working like there's no end. It's the only way I don't break down and cry every second. I love my mission with every piece of my heart and have never been so grateful for anything in my life. I am excited to see what miracles await us these next 4 weeks and how much more I will change to be the best person I can be.

I love all of you. I hope you know that!

Hermana Knight

*** P.S.  If anyone wants to write me, now is your chance! Time is running out!
If you told me you would write me but haven't yet- you have one more month!!!

Hermana Haley Knight
6430 Charlotte Pike
Apt 410
Nashville, TN
Robin Hood tires, I would not be surprised if they were true to their name and steal tires from rich people to give to the poor- it's in the ghetto.

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