Time sure flies much too quickly than I'd like at times (since tomorrow is another month marker). That makes you happy, but gets me running even faster and harder than ever. I love the rush in Missionary Work I get from 1 Corinthians 9:25-26, makes you think of your great importance AND of the work you are involved in as mother, father, teacher, leader, friend, or tree cat in Ecuador.
As for me in Manta, the change is up in 2 weeks and I'm sure I'm out of here. My year run in paradise is about up, it never rains, the ocean breeze, the food (shark on Saturday, octopus on Sunday, what more could I ask for?) Great to hear all is well with all of you!
Anyway, let's hurry to the good stuff before my time comes to a close. This week was a rough one if we want to talk about progress and numbers. We’re working to get the Zone up and going again and trying to save our sector. I have really come closer to my Savior this week and learned how to better serve Him in moments of trial. We search and search for the reason why we are tried, when sometimes the answer is 'Just cause.' I am learning how (cause I'm still perfecting it) to face the rough times with hard work and optimism to animate those around me, whether they be my companion, my investigators, or those in my Zone. More than anything I was touched and humbled at the same time.
We went to visit Lenín who has quit progressing and was thinking of dropping us. In talking to him, he was his happy, talkative self, but sooner or later he simply broke down to tears and asked us 'What am I doing wrong, does God really listen to me when I pray? Because I pray for help to take away my addiction, I pray for a better life with friends, I simply want a wife, kids, happiness.' It really shocked us and I truly learned how to better love and suffer patiently with those around me. We promised him special blessings, we left him happy and animated as ever, and again he thanked us for being sent from God. Lessons like that really make you so happy, moments that can't really be marked with a number.
My time is short, but I want you all to know that Christ loves you. He always has and always will. We do pass through trials and so do those around us and it is much easier to do it patiently WITH those around us, not against them. They need us and we need them, just as we need Christ and I'm positive He needs us in the Mansions of His Father. What is His Atonement worth if we don't get to be there enjoying the reward with Him? Let us love those around us, let us strengthen our relation with Christ, and let it shine upon those around us. That is the beauty of life. That is the life of a missionary - pure joy.
Love you all!