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Monday, June 16, 2014

Of Allergies, Bikes and Cubans

Hola todos!! :)
This last week was amazing! We saw so many miracles! First off, we were challenged to start  the Book of Mormon over from the beginning as a mission last week, so we've been doing that.... and it's AMAZING!! I just want to read it all day! I have a hard time sticking to the schedule they gave us because I just want to read it all the time! I've never read the Book of Mormon and applied it to missionary work so much. It's eye-opening! I know what it means to apply the scriptures now! Ahhh I have just developed a love for this book all over again. :) It's amazing! Everyone should read it!
With that, we've invited an investigator and two of our less-actives to do the challenge with us! It's been great so far. They were all so excited about it. We stop by the less-actives' houses during the week to read with them and see what they've learned. We're convinced that if everyone reads the Book of Mormon, especially members who haven't read it completely, they will gain a testimony of its truthfulness. It's a promise in the Introduction of the Book of Mormon. Any person who reads, meditates and prays about the Book of Mormon will come to know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph was a prophet, and that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord's kingdom on the earth. Those are all pretty important questions that we all need answers to right? You can find them by reading the Book of Mormon! We're so pumped about this! I don't know why I never thought of it before! Well, I did, I just didn't realize how key it is to conversion. That's why we're here!
This week we started teaching this great family of 6. So far we've only been able to teach the mom since her husband is always working and her kids are never home, but she has a bap date now and is so excited to learn more! The kids will be there in our next lesson. :) We're teaching a total of 3 great families right now. :) Also, Jose is getting baptized in less than two weeks now!! WOO! And our investigator, Dario, has almost read the entire Book of Mormon -- in just 3 weeks! He is a sweet old man! We are so blessed here in Hikes. I LOVE THIS PLACE. I never want to leave!! I feel like the Lord is opening the windows of heaven right now and raining Hispanics on us. It's a Spanish-speaking missionary's dream. haha.
I have a miracle story to share! Ok, once upon a time there was a Steak 'n' Shake right down the street from the Hikes Hermanas' apartment. Then one night there was a hungry hermana named Hermana Porter, and as she and her companion were driving home for dinner one night she saw Steak 'n' Shake gleaming in the horizon. She convinced her companion to go there, so they went in to eat....and guess.what. The waiter was this super cute CUBAN girl!! She was 24, SUPER sweet, had a little bit of an accent. The hermanas asked where she was from, she said Cuba, and they went all Spanish on her! And guess what! The waitress asked what Church we were from (I'm done talking in third person haha) and we told her, and she said, "Oh cool! When I lived in Vegas I used to take the lessons from the missionaries and go to that Church!" WHAAAAAT! She lived in VEGAS?! I told her I knew Vegas pretty well, and she said she lived on South Maryland Parkway -- right by the mission home! -- and she got all excited! We were able to get her information and asked her if she'd be willing to take the discussions again, and she accepted! What a miracle! Unfortunately she's not in her areas, BUT she's in my trainer's area here in Louisville! :D Moral of the story: listen to your stomach because sometimes it's really the Spirit telling you to do something. It was such a miracle that she was our waitress at Steak 'n' Shake of all places! And how fortunate that we speak Cuban!
We also ran into Nadaj again this week as we were riding bikes. We saw her across the street and called her over to see how she was doing. She told us what had happened after Safe Place came and got her, and she said she hasn't been drinking since then! But she has smoked. -.- We talked to her for a bit about making good choices, etc. and told her to say hi to us if she ever sees us. I was just so happy to see the normal Nadaj. :) She's a sweet girl. Definitely looked/acted her age this time! Just hope she turns her life around... I don't think we were meant to run into her by accident.
Also, can I just say how much I love my companion?! She is GREAT!! I've learned so much about her this last week! We get along great as it is, but now I know her even more! She's awesome! I know a lot about her family too haha. :) Sometimes we talk wayyy too much and have to stop ourselves, but I just love how much more success we have as we get to know each other and get on the same page. Dream team for sure!!
Overall I feel so blessed to be out here, especially in this area. This is like the promised land of the Spanish world here in Kentucky. So many hispanics everywhere! I've learned so much these last 5 weeks (5 weeks already?! President and Sister Woodbury go home next week! :( Time flies...). I've learned a ton about myself, about listening, about using the Book of Mormon, about teaching, about caring.... You name it! I love love love my life right now. I don't ever want to leave! The mission is the best thing I've ever chosen to do, aside from going to BYU. (Go Cougs!!) My companion talk about it almost every night, what a blessing the mission has been. I've said it before and I'll say it a million times more: I know how to be a member of the Church now that I'm a missionary. My eyes have been opened! I love this Church! I love this Gospel! I LOVE MISSIONARY WORK!!!
And that is my life yall :) I love hearing from everyone! I hope this week goes well for yall, especially for Alecia & Jayden!! Happy wedding day!!! :D 
The Church is true and the Book is blue!
Hermana Porter

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