June 14, 2015

Week 52: 365 DAYS LATER . . .

365 days ago i was dropped off at the curb of the Provo Missionary Training center, not having a clue of what i was really in for.  Not having a clue of how physically, mentally, and emotionally tough a mission would be, but at the same time the most fulfilling, life changing experience.  Over the course of this past year, i have learned.....

- patience through my weaknesses and those of others
- that my hair and nails need SERIOUS beauty treatment when i return
-  how to accept / eat every food put in front of me haha!
- how to constantly smile even if my mood doesn't feel like it
- humility
- how faith produces miracles
- prayers are always answered
- how the people aren't perfect, but that this church and the doctrine are perfect
- how incredibly blessed i am to have the family and friends that i have
- christ's atonement changes lives
- the blessings that come from fasting and obedience
- appreciation for my american citizenship and the opportunities we have here haha #americanPride
- that i truly love these people and desire their salvation
- that God and Jesus Christ LIVE
- that everything happens for a reason- there are no coincidences in this life
- how much suffering there is in this world, but how one can find happiness and peace through this gospel
- how to survive with out social media ;)
- this church is a church of order
- how satan is constantly trying to tempt us
- how to selflessly serve others
- how to be fluent in spanish ;)
- how to depend on the Lord during my trials
- how to love reading the scriptures
- how to be bold and direct with people haha!
- how to accept my values and beliefs
- how to really read people and understand their emotions 
                           Walking into the MTC a year ago!

I can't decide if this year has creeped by or zoomed by-- all i can say is that I am proud to announce that my clothes still fit!!! the tortillas havn't done too much damage hahaha.  It's safe to say that I really have experienced a whole other world here-- while maintaining my personality traits!-- and I am beginning to understand why I have been called here to Monterrey.  Only 25 weeks left of this journey.
This past thursday we had our consejo de liderazgo-- leadership council-- with the 20 zone leaders, 6 hermana leaders, assistants, presidente and his wife.  7 Full hours of planning and evaluating how we are doing as a mission.  What we should be focusing on and how we can better help the other missionaries.  I loved it!  It's awesome looking at all the mission stats-- coming up with creative ideas that we can use, and our weak / strong areas.  As a leader it's pressure because you have to be on point with all these expectations presidente has.  We have talked lots about really searching / teaching people that are "prepared" by the Lord-- and really imagining every person dressed in white entering the temple with their family to be sealed for all eternity.  We talked about really speaking and teaching with authority-- having a positive outlook at all times, we have to motivate the other missionaries and help them reach their goals.  EVERYTHING in the mission is based off goals and plans-- this month:  every week each companionship is focusing on finding 10 "tomates rojos" or prepared people that are ready to accept the gospel, focus on finding complete families, mentioning El Libro de Mormon in every lesson, and making sure each sunday to have at least 3 investigadores with baptismal dates present at church.  Many other plans and goals but these are some of the focus.  We ended El Consejo with a delicious meal of orange chicken, salad, rice, bread and melted butter, maple doughnuts (Presidente, his wife, and I came to the conclusion that they were ALMOST as good as BYU's maple bars haha).  So fun getting to know president's personality even more haha mom and dad you are going to LOVE them when you get down here in december!!

a talk we use a lot here:

My omelette making skills ;)

Well the summer cockroaches are beginning to take over-- literally crawl out of our kitchen sink.  So nasty.  Tomorrow we have interviews with presidente.  The heat is so strong and the freckles are multiplying.  Until next thursday!! (June 18).  We go to the temple.
 15 months and 1 year down for us both!

C O N  A M O R
hermana riches

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