Happy Dominican Mother's Day yesterday! They celebrate it later here than in the States, but no, I did not talk to my family again. Everything was closed and everyone was gone with their families, so we just contacted all day. We found a hoisted Peruvian flag, and my comp was totally excited of course. We rang the intercom bell to meet who lived there. Well, everything here is gated, like sometimes solid metal walls you can't see through, so we didn't realize what the building was until we looked to the right and saw the Peruvian embassy sign hahaha! We freaked out and booked it out of there really fast:)
It's been a big week of highs and lows. For example, I got another/different fungal rash, but I got to go on splits with a new MTC Hermana, and guess who she graduated with? My Idaho Falls cousins, Carolynn Randall and Tyler Marlowe! And her wardie just married Carolynn's sister, McKinlie! Hahaha what a small world:) I met the meanest man of my entire mission, but, the other Hermanas' ward asked us to do a musical number at their Mother's Day activity, so we did the song we used for zone conference last week:)
We contacted more than double the weekly standard because we're trying so darn hard to find new investigators. That's something Elder Maynes of the presidency of the Seventy told us a couple months ago: if you want to teach more people, you have to spend more time finding. So guess what? We found people who want to hear the gospel!! Hallelujah! The reason why we've had more time to search for news is because we've hardly gotten to teach our 5 investigators, 2 recent converts, and 4 less-active families. They've been too busy or gone, and the investigators aren't progressing. Of the 200 people in the ward, only 60-70 come to church (and it's one of the strongest wards in the mission), so we're working on narrowing down the less-active list--figuring out who still lives here, etc. Hermana Ventocilla and I are excited about all the potential here in Bella Vista!
So...some sad news. We went to teach Yamilka on Saturday about eh Plan of Salvation, which she had been eager to learn about. Well, she hadn't read the Book of Mormon because she's so hung up about the Moroni being resurrected thing. And then she disagreed with everything we taught in the first half of the Plan of Happiness. She basically wishes we lived Satan's plan without agency. She doesn't understand that Christ was chosen as our Savior in heaven and that the Atonement is necessary for us to be saved. She thinks we can be forgiven of our sins but that we'll always carry them with us. She can't understand why God would allow us to suffer on earth (which is to help us grow) and refuses to accept that Adam and Eve committed a transgression, not a sin. She blames them for our mortal pain. Wow, I've never had to explain a lesson so thoroughly, trying to help Yamilka understand this precious, comforting knowledge. Satan has completely gotten a hold of her; it's so sad. But we testified with all of our hearts that she chose to accept God's plan of happiness and that she can return to His presence through the Savior's Atonement. One of the scriptures we shared with her is found in Isaiah 1:18, which declares,
"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."
The later in these last days we live before the Second Coming, the greater is our potential to rise or fall. We have to be stronger than ever to resist Satan's power. Through it all, Christ's perfect, healing Atonement is there to wash us clean of guilt and sin; and if we let Him, He can make more of us than we can ever make of ourselves.