- one night we talked to these kids who were all eating snowcones on the street. in mexico snowcones are called "raspas" which is such a better name. the whole time it smelled like pickles. i was so confused. then all of a sudden the kid coughed and i realized they were eating PICKLE JUICE RASPAS. ew.
- yesterday was "game day". We had 5 baptisms in Laredo. It was insane. It was District Conference and so all 6 congregations were in our chapel. Elder Wright, of the quorum of the 70 came. We arrived at 9am to set everything up for the baptisms after the service. (Somehow I always get stuck in charge of planning #stuco4life) We printed the programs, started filling the font, and ran around getting everything set up. On top of all the madness, we were having 2 services, one in Spanish, one in English.. So District conference was starting, and we were waiting in the hall for people to arrive when Elder Boyer and Hatchet ran up to us asking if we had keys to the girls bathroom. (The bathrooms are connected to the font because people have to change their clothes after being baptized, and the switch to the font is on the women's side.) We asked them why and they told us that the font was full, but the door was locked. Oh shoot. On the other side of the doors of the font is the room where the service was going on. Can you imagine the whole room starting to flood during the service?! So we ran, found keys, and then scurried to the bathroom... just as someone shut the door to the stall with the door to the font in it... We stood their awkwardly, but patiently waiting, thinking of all the disastrous things that could happen. Finally we got into the stall and Elder Boyer was standing on the other side. I was so confused. We asked him how he had gotten in. Wiping the sweat from his brow, he stretched his arms and legs to each side of the wall, and said, "I scaled from the other side and across the water." "YOU DID WHAT?!" Can yall imagine if he fell in the water? Just like we all did as kids, scaling the doorways up to the top, it actually came in handy. #clairekeepdoinggymnastics
- Wednesday we had interviews and President looked me square in the eye and said "Don't make decisions based on your fears." I thought I was doing better because he had told me that last interview. On Friday, all of our appointments fell through and we had no idea what to do. We said a prayer asking for guidance, and when we opened our eyes, three teenage boys were playing knockout in their driveway. Sister Taylor nonchalantly suggested we play. I immediately said, "NO! I am so bad at basketball! And look, the backboard is broken, there's no way I can swish every shot." She said, "let's do it." I said, "I am so scared!" She said, "Remember what president said? Don't make decisions based on fears." and a that moment I opened the car door, marched right up to them and asked if we could play.
And guys. GUESS WHAT HAPPENED. I won three games in a row. Yes you read that correctly. YO GANÉ! The first two games were pretty easy. I got everyone out pretty quickly. Then Sister Taylor said, " Ok, let's make this interesting. If we win this next game, we get to share a message with you." The game started, and I got everyone out except one kid. We battled back and forth, but then his shot bounced weird off the shattered backboard, and I drained my shot for the win. I was freaking out inside. I have no idea how it happened.. well I do. It was my companion praying, and the lord helping me. And now we have three solid new people to teach! #miracles
Elder Dallin H. Oaks, an apostle, came to McAllen, Texas, on Saturday. All the missionaries in the mission came down to have a private meeting with him, Elder Wright, Elder Lynn G. Robbins, and President Maluenda. For the next few weeks I will be sharing what I learned because it is so much it would take all day to compile everything.
Elder Oaks. Hijole! He is the BESTT. He was cracking jokes at the beginning. One thing he said was: "I was the president of BYU before becoming an apostle. A lot of my students come up to me now asking if I remember them. I respond by saying,'help me,' and then hope that it isn't my grandchild." jaja.
He began by talking about how important that everyone understands our message. Sometimes we think they are on Level 5 of learning, when really they aren't even passed Level 2. We must make sure that they know what we are talking about before we move on. It was so inspiring, and so true. Everyone is so different, and we must learn to teach according to how they will understand. He was going along, and it was so good, and then all of a sudden he just looked at all of us and you could see the love radiating from him. He looked out at us and said, "I am going to do something I don't do very often."
Closing his notes, he asked the question "What is revelation? When you receive revelation, where, when, and how have you taken that guidance. He changed the topic according to what the spirit prompted him to say. For twenty minutes he had missionaries stand up and share personal experiences and things they have learned from personal revelation.
For me, my personal revelation comes through prayer, reading letters, and quiet thinking in the morning. One Elder mentioned, that how do we expect to receive revelation if we aren't acting on the promptings we do receive? The faster we act, the more God will bless us with guidance. I encourage you all to find out the ways you receive personal revelation and then put yourself in more situations so that God can guide your path.
I love you all. I love my life. I never want to stop.
s/o Kurt and Sarah for sending me a package of goodies. I LOVE YOU.
s/o Mackenzie Johnson on her birthday last week.