I love P-Days! Except for this morning!! I had a dream last night that the family came and visited Guadalajara and came and hung out with me. I woke up this morning super homesick because it felt so real! And every Monday morning we clean the house and get everything done in the home so I had tons of time to just think!
Anyways, here's a cool story from this week...So we have an investigator named Cecilia and she is super strong. Last week, Elder Silos and I went and visted her 3 times and her 4 year old son answered the door each time and told us that she wasn't home. She ALWAYS answers the door. So Elder Silos and I figured she wasn't interested. I prayed that night asking for a miracle with her. The next day we returned and if she didn't answer we were going to drop her. Well we knocked on the door and within the first minute she told us that she missed the spirit we brought and that she was out of town for 5 days. She said that she wanted to get baptized really soon and that she read her Book of Mormon every day while she was out of town. So that was super cool... we have her baptism set for October 26th.
Well I would say that Saturday was one of the worst and hardest days on my mission so far. We went and taught a lesson and after we had lunch scheduled at a members house who lived five miles away...but it was okay because we were going to take the bus...or so we thought. Some drunk bum who also had the arroma of marijuana VERY POLITELY asked me for all my money. Luckily I only had 50 pesos on me, which is like 5 US dollars, but that still meant that we couldn't take the bus. So we walked. The last 2 miles were completely uphill. Once we got to the house, THEY FORGOT that we were going to eat with them!! So they heated up leftovers from the night before. It was a vegetable and meat soup. The vegetables were super soggy and the meat had tons of bone and fat on it. It was BY FAR the worst meal I have had here. I poured tons of hot sauce on it to make it taste better but it still tasted terrible. My mouth was burning but I needed to finish my food haha!! It's either I don't eat and offend the member or I eat and feel sick for the rest of the day. On Saturday, I chose option 2. haha
The next day was good though. Yesterday we got to go to the temple!!! Well first, I woke up and TRIED to make pancakes for my companion and I. I bought everything the night before and I wanted to make a good meal for a good day. As I went to pour the milk into the batter, the milk smelt sour and came out chunky...the expiration date is Oct 17!!! So we ended up not eating breakfast yesterday. But like I said, we got to go to the temple! It was stake conference. Preseident Camarillo, my mission president, gave an amazing talk. He talked about spreading this gospel and being an instrument in the hand of God. Everyone received a piece of paper as they walked in to the chapel and President Camarillo challenged all of them to write down their name, their ward, and someone who they think is ready for the gospel. It was amazing because at the end, they gave us all their papers! After the meeting I took tons of pictures at the temple. We get to go back during the week of Christmas to do a session in spanish. Hopefully by then I will beable to understand what they are saying! haha. It is super hard because I don't understand people when they talk so then my mind goes off somewhere else...and then I get asked a question and I have absolutely no clue what they are talking about! It is so frustrating!
I saw 8 dead dogs this week...and one in the act of being killed/beaten to death. It is so sad here! When their dog dies they just throw it out on the street and hope that someone will pick it up. And no one does so it smells soooooo bad!!
When we walk through the streets it's super funny because there is so many bad things that are happening but my companion always reminds me, "Ver derecho." This means look forward, because I am always so interested in what is going on and it's never good... most of it is drug deals or prostitutes haha. But there are always "Cholos" here that sit in the back of their trucks and drink and smoke. Whenever we walk past them they just yell things to me and I don't understand what they are saying. I just look at my companion and laugh because he gets super mad. They are always saying things about me but I don't care because I can't understand! haha
I really am having a good experience. I'm not saying I'm having fun or that I'm always super happy but the mission is awesome! It is a roller coaster to say the least. Some days we struggle to teach anyone and then the next we get like 5 baptismal dates. We have 6 baptisms coming up this next month. We had one on Saturday, she was taught by the missionaries before I got here, but it was a really cool experience.
Your letters are amazing! I read them multiple times throughout the week and they just give me strength to get through the week. It is so hard out here because at times I feel like I am in a "lone and dreary world" (Dad) but I feel your guys' prayers -and through your letters I know that you guys are here with me in spirit. I hope you are all doing well and I pray about you guys in every prayer!! You can ask my companion haha all the investigators and members here always ask me to explain my family and show pictures and I love talking about you guys but I am on the verge of tears every time I talk about you hahaha
I know everything will be okay with the help of God. We need to put all our trust in God because without his strength in our lives, nothing is possible. (Alma 26:12)
Elder Mike Payne