They say that change is an opportunity for growth, and my am I excited for this new opportunity!
I was transferred this morning and I am now in El Talar, which is part of Tigre. I am training again, Hermana Hualpa from Chile (well, she was born in Peru but grew up in Chile), but this is her second transfer. With the new program, the training program is two transfers, so I will be doing her final training... basically, the hard part is already done, and I get to have all the fun! haha. But really, it is going to be a great transfer. I really like the looks of the area. I have only been here 3 hours, but it just feels good. I really like the things that have been going on here. Hermana Smith who was here before is a great friend of mine, and she is an amazing missionary. You might remember the name El Talar... yes, it is one of the areas that I visited! haha. Fun. I remember a few things, but my two short days here were a whirlwind and so I don´t remember all that much. But it is fun to have this be my new area. Hermana Hualpa is truly wonderful and I feel strongly that we are going to work really well together. It was hard leaving San Ignacio after 6 months... they really become your family! But it also felt right. It was time. Here I go on my next adventure! Everyone says that it will be my final area since I only have three more transfers (can NOT believe that) and I figure they are probably right... but you never know, I suppose :)
The area has a few weak points right now, but we have set goals and made plans and we will be getting to work, work, work. They haven´t had an investigator in church in 3 weeks, so that is a major need. Without investigators in church, you can´t have baptisms since if they don´t go to church they can´t make this sacred covenant with the Lord. So our focus is going to be on finding new investigators and getting them to church. I know that the Lord is going to bless us for our righteous desires, constant prayers, and HARD WORK! Like Mackay said, you can work like crazy and only teach a tiny bit, but I also know that after the trial of the faith comes the great blessing. Hang in there, Elder Shelley! Sounds like you have an awesome area and a Rock Star companion, so things will pick up soon. Pray like crazy... I have been thinking of starting to forward you the letters that we get each week from President Gulbrandsen... only if you want though. I think that I will send you this week´s letter. It is about consecration. From there you can decide if you still want them or not.
This past week was really good in San Ignacio. We were able to find a lot of new investigators and complete families, which is such a huge blessing. We have been praying so much to find families, and I know that the Lord is going to keep blessing Hermana Montecinos and Hermana Smith... ya... we just made a switch! Crazy, but I came here and she went there! haha. Good times.
This morning in our studies, Hermana Montecinos and I were able to do a little reflecting and see where we were, how far we have come and where we are going. It was a really neat experience. I am so very proud of her and her progress. She is a wonderful missionary and I saw so much growth in her in our three months together. She is going to do amazing things in her mission.
So funny and super awkward story... yesterday, I told the bishop that I was pretty sure that I was going to be transferred. He surprised me a lot when he got really emotional and talked about all the miracles that we have seen together in our time serving together and thanked me for some things, and I for that got kinda emotional and thanked him for everything. I put my hand out to shake his, and he gave he a hug! I just about died! He realized quickly and said with his awesome Chinese accent "oh no! I can´t do that, can I??" haha. It was really funny because we were both super embarrassed. Of course it was in front of the Elders too so they made sure to give me a hard time. haha. I felt really embarrassed. I always thought that I would not be an awkward returned missionary until that moment... I think I will be pretty awkward.
This Friday we have interviews with President and that will be really nice. I always look forward to those interviews and the revelation that I know that we will receive. President Gulbrandsen is so awesome and I am so grateful for all that he does for us. He has a very much elevated vision and I love the challenge. He knows what the Lord expects of us. It is a LOT and I am willing to get out there and do the work. I know that the Lord will bless us. I am so excited for this new area. Change is so good for me. It gives me a breath of fresh area and the desire to meet the new challenge. It will be a great transfer, I am sure.
I love you all so much! I know that this is the true Church of Jesus Christ. I know that He is the head of the Church. I know that He lives. I know that He suffered for each of us individually. The price has already been paid. We have to choose to do our part and apply His atoning blood. That His sacrifice may not be in vain is my great prayer. He is the Savior of the World. He is your and my personal Savior. He is the Son of God.
General Conference is quickly approaching. Prepare yourselves now. Make sure that you have that weekend free. Do everything to be in every session. Prophets of God will be speaking to us. They truly have the road map to our lives for these next 6 months. Prepare some questions that you have. I promise you that you will find the answers.
I love you all so much! Please pray that we might find the people who are truly prepared to receive the Gospel and that they will have a wonderful experience in Church on Sunday.