Hola familia y amigos,
Tomorrow I complete 9 months in the mission!!! I can't believe I'm halfway through! These last 3 months have gone by sooooooo much faster than the first 3. So this week my comp and I have been working a lot on finding new families to teach. We found this new couple named Mercedes and Luis who have an 8-year-old son named Javier. We had the first lesson with them on Saturday and they commited to coming to church the next day. We taught about the Book of Mormon but didn't have a copy to leave so Sunday, when we passed by in the morning to bring them to church we brought them a Book of Mormon. Luis sat down and started reading it that instant. Mercedes started making coffee and messing with the radio and we asked them if they were gonna come to church. She said it depended on Luis. So we asked Luis if he was gonna go and he wouldn't answer haha. He got robbed and beaten some years back so he has some injuries on his head that I think have caused some problems mentally. But not many cuz he definitely understands and can communicate himself. He does seem to have some trouble walking though. Anyway, we spent a half hour asking them if they were gonna go and saying we needed to leave soon cuz church was about to start. In the end, 5 minutes before church was gonna start, I said, "Ok, we're gonna hail a taxi and bring it over here, so we'll be right back and they we'll all go to the church. It was raining, so I wasn't sure they were gonna go out in the rain. We hurried and found a taxi and brought it to their house and after a couple minutes getting reading they got in the taxi and came with us to church and we only ended up being a few minutes late. And what to our suprise when we walked into the chapel and a member told us a couple had arrived who were asking for us. I thought, "Who could it be?" And began thinking of all the couples we were teaching who could have possibly showed up on their own. Turns out it was a less active we found this week who had commited to coming to church and he brought his wife! We didn't even know he had a wife!! Miracle!! 2 families in church! I know that faith works miracles. As we were passing by for people that morning, a lot of people who had commiting to coming to church had said something came up and they couldn't go so I started to feel discouraged. But as we walked along, I prayed in my heart that God would increase my faith and help me to not give up hope.
I really do love Nicaragua. The people here are so loving. They welcome you into your house even when you're a stranger! Also, in all my time here, I think I have only met a total of 3 people who don't believe in God. The people here understand the importance of Christ in their lives and almost everyone I meet, when I ask them what role Christ plays in their life, says, "Everything." or "Without him, we'd be nothing." It's awesome.
Something I've learned recently is that up to this point in my mission, I've wasted a lot of time visitng stubborn less actives, trying new tactics every time to help them to come to church. But there are so many less actives here and I've realized I need to forget the stubborn ones who aren't willing to open their hearts and go find the ones who are ready to come back to the fold of God, like Eleazar, the less active that came to church on Sunday and brought his wife. It's the same with investigators. We need to drop the stubborn ones and go find the ones who are humble and ready to act in faith. I think a really effective mission consists of a whole lot of finding and dropping and less time wasted with the same people who aren't gonna change.
Ooh, we also found an awesome new investigator this week named Reina, who is the niece of Beatriz, our recent convert who got baptized a few weeks ago. She's really positive and I'm hoping it stays that way.
Interesting note: People here ride motorcylces with babies in their arms. How dangerous!! Their are a lot less road laws here. I'm really suprised I haven't seen more accidents.
Also, I think I wrote that my comp was kinda of quiet. I was wrong. Once you get to know her, she's pretty quirky. And loves to tease. Here's an example of one of her quips: We're doing this "be a more loving companion" thing as a mission so I told her I loved her and she responded, "With your lips you honor me, but your heart is far from me." Hahaha. I don't think she is ever serious. In fact in can be quite hard to tell when she joking and when she's telling the truth. }
Completely out of time. Love you all to the moon and back!! Go give someone a hug and tell them you appreciate them! :)
Love, Hermana Hawkins