Monday, May 7, 2012

May 7, 2012 - Mountains to Climb

Mountains to Climb

Did I mention in one of my last letters that I liked that General Conference talk by Elder Eyring from this last General Conference? Well, everyday I've got that quote in my head,
''Give me mountains to climb,''

and I ask myself,

''How do I climb the mountain?''

The switch to a new sector and being senior companion has been great! I have learned so much in just three weeks, but I have a ton more to learn. These past three weeks have been a combination of showing me that I am capable and have a lot of weaknesses. So its been great and horrible at the same time. No one likes to be shown point blank their weak points, but in the mission there is no escaping them.

This last week was the hardest. I live in a house with three other sisters, and boy have we had a run for it in the health department. First my companion fell and skinned up her knee bad, then one sister has got a serious sinus, bronchitis problem, another sister seemed to have scabies (a little bug that lives under your skin and bits you a million times) which is HIGHLY contagious, and then just two days ago I contracted pink eye, and now three out of the four of us have a cold. So we all are doing scabies treatment to prevent spreadage of that (which seems to be uneffective as I have started getting little bug bites).

But today we went to the doctor and with the right meds we should be back to normal in no time! We live across the street from the Bishop and his wife who treat us like their daughters, so no worries, we are in good hands. And all these sicknesses just make life exciting. When I went to church on Sunday my eye was almost swollen shut, so everyone in the ward made fun of me for winking at everyone, and I managed to play the piano for the sacrament hymns with one good eye and one eye half open!

Also it has started raining. I got a taste of Chilean rain yesterday...this is gonna be fun! it will rain torrents, then stop, then rain hard, then you always have to be on your guard. And sometimes the rain is accompanied by gusting winds so strong that it is pointless to use an umbrella because it will break or you will fly away. Luckily for me I really like rain. So all the windy, stormy weather makes me feel happy...we'll see if I sing the same tune after a week of rain non-stop :)

Mission Conference

Two weeks ago we also had a visit from a member of the Quorom of the Seventy. Elder Kevin R. Duncan (he told me that he went to reorganize the Rocklin and Granite Bay Stakes a year!) He taught us a lot of great things. Three things that stuck with me and that I want to put into practice are,

  1. Love needs to be the motivation. You can't force people to act or do things, but if you love them, you invite them to act out of love as well. All that God does He does because He loves us. And He wants us to also do all that we do out of our love for Him.
  2. We have to have a vision of what we want to accomplish. If we don't have a clear view of where we are going (in the long run, and in the short run) it will be harder to get there or accomplish things. And we can't let difficult circumstances in the moment discourage us from continuing to work for the future.
  3. We need to be creators of circumstances. You have to MAKE things happen in your life. If you aren't willing to strive to make things come to pass in your life, you have no one else to blame than yourself for not accomplishing things in you life. We will always be acted upon, but God sent us here to ACT. To choose and work and strive and bring to pass good things through our own efforts and righteousness.
It was a great conference (minus the fact that me and my three housemates couldn't shake his hand because we didn't want to risk giving him scabies:) how embarrassing!)

• • •

Even though sometimes things don't go the way planned, and it is more comfortable to not pass through hard times, I know that hard times are essential if we are to learn and grow. I'm in the growing pain stage of my mission, the stretching is uncomfortable, but I know that I'll come out of it better, stronger, and more capable!

I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ which teaches us to repent and try to always be better, and to endure the trials in this life with faith, trusting always in the Savior.

I love you, thank you for your support while I am here on my mission! I appreciate your prayers and encouragement :)

Hermana Bowns

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