Monday, July 27, 2015
Dear family and friends,
Just yesterday, we got news about transfers. And guess where I am getting transfered to?? Zona La Primavera, Area Huanchaco--the area of the Trujillo temple!!!! I was so stoked to hear that I will be close to the temple AND the beach, and it will be interesting to work in a more wealthy area. I have seriously loved Guadalupe though and will sincerely miss the members, investigators, and people I have come to know.
I also feel spoiled rotten because today I was in Pacasmayo with Hermana Obando for the day and we went to the beach!! (: We took tons of photos, and there is a statue of Christ with his arms open towards the city of Pacasmayo and the sea.
With only a few hours to do recuerdos, pack my suitcases, eat dinner, say goodbye, and a whole huge list of other things, I hope I can catch a wink of sleep tonight. Me and Hermana Tomanguillo will be traveling to Trujillo tomorrow morning bright and early for the changes meeting. I will meet my companion there, Hermana Bronson, and we will part ways. I am so thankful I could be with Hermana Tomanguillo for 8 weeks :3
Ok. Spiritual thought for the day. I was reading in chapter 8 of PMG and I studied about accountability. We are SO responsible for the things that happen in our lives. I encourage you all to study how we will be accountable for the things we did, things we didn't do, and how we went about doing it (like our attitude!). My favorite scripture is a chunk of verses from Ezekiel 33, verses 1 through 13. Verses 9 and 10 say:
Therefore, O thou son of man, speak unto the house of Israel; Thus ye speak, saying, If our transgressions and our sins upon us, and we pine away in them, how should we then live?
I ADORE this parable of the watchman and the people's responsibility. If we are called to watch for the people, the warning trump shifts the accountability to those who choose not to listen to the trump, and if the watchman chooses not to sound his trump--or does it too late--the accountability of ALL the souls is upon his head. I feel like that is a pretty heavy power that rests in my hands as a missionary, messenger of the truth, and watch(wo)man. I also feel like it is an invitation to all of those who aren't missionaries to watch for those who need a warning from the dangers of sin as well. As members of the true church of Jesus Christ, we have the advantage and knowledge of what's coming ahead. It's no wonder that we will be held responsible for the suffering of others when we stood silent because we worried too much about the uncomfortable situation it is to speak to others about the gospel. SHARE THE GOSPEL!! (:
Below is a photo of me catching some wooden waves on a wall mural by the Pacasmayo Beach. The other is of a dolphin park in Pacasmayo that is so cute (: Happy Monday! (:
Posted by Hali F. at 4:27 PM
Monday, July 20, 2015
I am feeling burnt! We spent our Pday today at Paijan beach and it was such a blast!! President took us and the Casa Grande Zone to the beach for softball, soccer, frisbee, and castle constructing. It was such a blessing to hear and see the waves crash and have the sand inbetween my toes (:
This week we have been working to help Patty's husband, Jorge, learn more about the gospel. He is full of questions and has a sincere desire to learn the truth; the best news ever--him and ALL of the family came to church this week!! And they stayed for all 3 hours which is like a miracle and a half from God because they take care of Patty's grandma who can barely feed herself. They all enjoyed the meetings and we are burning with desire to set a baptism date with Jorge, and possibly help him and Patty be baptized together. Part of the goal in the mission, now, is to set temple dates with the investigators as well. So hopefully, we can set a temple date for the two of them a year from now. What a blessing to have a temple close by!! (: I am dying to get inside.
My studies this week have been on this and that, but I have been reading the Isaiah chapters in 2 Nephi and also reading the BOM in English as part of the challenge President and Sister Marler have invited us to do. I came upon 2 verses from these different studies that I liked:
From 2 Nephi studies:
And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling, and for a rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
And from the BOM challenge in 1 Nephi:
For the time cometh, saith the Lamb of God, that I will work a great and a marvelous work among the children of men; a work which shall be everlasting, either on the one hand or on the other—either to the convincing of them unto peace and life eternal, or unto the deliverance of them to the hardness of their hearts and the blindness of their minds unto their being brought down into captivity, and also into destruction, both temporally and spiritually, according to the captivity of the devil, of which I have spoken.
Both of these talk about Christ being 2 different things: 1) a sanctuary or the means of convincing us to peace and eternal life and 2) a "stumbling block" and deliverance of the hard hearts and blind minds to captivity and destruction. BOTH of them are everlasting. It also reminded me, when it talks about this "great and marvelous work," of the "great and terrible day" of the coming of the Lord. As every missionary can testify of those who refuse our message, we have cause as well to testify of those who have found Christ and have used Him as a means of rising up and not tripping down. It made me consider my personal dedication and obedience to the work and to the commandments in general. Do I view the commandments as a hurdle to overpass in order to reach the prize awaiting me at the finish line? Or rather, are the commandments my energy source that I seek to avoid the pitfalls of sin? After reading about charity last week and realizing the necessity to think charitably and not just act charitably, I have to confess that I have had to pray to love the commandments and to have a deeper desire to obey or work hard. I invite all of you to pray for a love to obey and follow the counsel of the prophets and apostles. It is so much easier to obey if we love doing it! (:
Have a great week all! Thanks so much for the letters that you write and the support it brings to me. May the Lord bring His miracles to your lives this week! (:
Posted by Hali F. at 4:09 PM
Monday, July 13, 2015
Dear loved ones,
I am BLOWN away at what a great week it has been. I kind of laugh when it comes to Internet hour because I feel like I am just repeating the same things that it was a GREAT week and there isnt anything bad that happened--but amongst all the trials there are in the mission, it is just too difficult to be sad! It truly is much easier to be happy. But anyway, my cause for happiness this week came from a variety of sources:
1-We took President Marler's advice and starting visiting and asking what we can do to serve the members here in Guadalupe. COMPLETELY changed the relationship we have with them. The best part is seeing the suprise in their faces when we prioritize their needs before the mission work. (although that IS the mission work (:)
2-The intercambios or division we had with the sister leaders. I dropped down to San Pedro with Hermana Blackburn and my companion stayed in our area. I learned SO many things and we had a great number of super spiritual experiences.
3-My personal study that I did this past Saturday. I decided that my love and compassion isn't as deep for the people I interact with as it should be. Studied up on something I had NO idea about. 1 Corinthians 13 verse 3 says:
And though I bestow all my goods to feed and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
We can GIVE our goods to the poor; we can GIVE our very life for others, and STILL lack charity. I have always perceived charity as just that--giving to others. But the more I studied charity and the type of kindness the Savior showed, it changed my view so much. Being charitable isnt about showing kindness, it is about being kind. Although there aren't too many verses that show what Jesus was thinking or feeling, we cannot possibly think that he forgave the adulterous woman thinking about how disobedient she had been; nor imagine that Christ felt anger towards His Father when He commanded him in whatsoever thing. Charity is so much deeper--and it involves feeling love and channeling out the negative thoughts towards others. It is something we can only pray to have, because our nature isn't prone to automatic God-like love.
I challenge you all to pray for this gift from God. All of our actions that are done out of obligation will bring no eternal reward. Internalizing and changing our own nature is the MIRACLE of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
Love you all and have a safe week. Enjoy the photos I attached too! haha (: The first is from our divisions with the Sister Leaders and the second is from our Zone Training Meeting this week. Until next P-Day!
Posted by Hali F. at 11:03 AM
Monday, July 6, 2015
Bienvenidos a la mision Peru Trujillo Norte!!!
It's official! We are now in the mission Peru Trujillo Norte! Yesterday, we had a meeting with the whole district of Guadalupe and President Marler and his wife. We all took of the sacrament together and the talks were so spiritual. We also had the chance to eat, have a missionary and President meeting, and interview with President, Sister Marler, the assistants, and the other office elders! We basically spent 12 hours in Pacasmayo - ha.
This week was such a great blessing for me. Although our two investigators preparing for baptism weren't progresing too well, things started to turn up for one of them after our mission leader gave her daughter a blessing. Her daughter has been crying for days on end and is sick with something they can't figure out. Our mission leader of the branch gave her a blessing and she slept for the first time in almost a week that very night. Patty, her mother, has been amazed at the difference in her daughter. I am so happy that Heavenly Father looks out for his children, and that He gives "father blessings" through men that exercise their priesthood authority righteously.
I attached 2 photos of our day in Pacasmayo--one with our pensionista Olga and her granddaughter Dayhann--the other of my agenda for which I got fancy and decorate my agenda ha. As far as my weekly spiritual thought, I thought I would share something I really liked from our meeting with President Marler yesterday. He said that "the work is never frustrated, but sometimes we frustrate God." It changed my mind about the will of God and how we sometimes believe that the miracles are completely dependent on us or the work only ends with OUR efforts. It is so true, that the salvation of each soul will never be frustrated by us. God simply won't let the imperfections of us as missionaries, members, and those we visit frustrate the work that is rolling forward. WE might frustrate Him sometimes when we choose not to stand on the side of those who are building the kingdom on earth, but we cannot frustrate the actual construction of the kingdom. God's will and purpose will always prevail; our will and way simply cannot touch it.
I believe that's all the time I have today! Have a safe week everyone and I have the mission blog and address attached at the bottom for convenience. Love you guys! (:
Sister Hali Furness
Calle Teodoro Valcarcel
Trujillo, La Libertad
Posted by Hali F. at 6:36 PM