Yesterday was great and today has been pretty good for the most part. I love the missionaries in our area, they have become like adopted siblings to me. There is this one Sister missionary who is exactly like me, I was talking to her and we totally connected with everything! It was so neat, and then we would share thoughts we had on certain trials and how we thought and how we coped with things and then I started thinking.. no one comes into our lives by coincidence. No one. We learn lessons from everybody, weather good or bad. With every person you meet you take something from your experience with them. This sister is having trouble with the language and so am I. I thought none of the missionaries would have much trouble with the language because they had the MTC and would receive the gift of tongues but no. I think that with every experience we have we can better help others and grow ourselves. Because of the things this sister had gone through, I was able to relate to and talk to her, which all the while I was thinking "Heavenly Father you are great! Grand even! I LOVE you!" I was so happy. But then I also thought, we need to thank him even when we are going through the hard times because the good times will come soon and the bad times shape us to a better version of ourselves. I've been talking to my brother's best friend and it has been such a blessing talking to her. If my brother hadn't met her I obviously wouldn't have and where would I be now? We have all met that someone or a few someone's who either we have impacted their lives or they have impacted ours, but I don't think we cross paths with others for no reason. I am so grateful for all of the wonderful people in my life and all of the people who will be in it in the future. Whenever your going through something hard just remember you will be able to help someone in the future who will be going through the same exact thing.
Thursday, July 18, 2013
Today we got our first letter from Josh! I was so excited. After reading I can already tell the lord is changing things in him and working inside of hime and through him. It was so neat to read all the experiences he's had just in the couple of weeks. It does not feel real. I can still remember him and I sharing a room and a bunk bed when we were little like it was yesterday. It feels so unreal. Heavenly Father really does work in mysterious ways because I've been having the worst week and at the end of Josh's letter he wrote the scripture Alma 26:6-8 which says " Yea, they shall not be beaten down by the storm at the last day; yea, neither shall they be harrowed up by the whirlwinds; but when the astorm cometh they shall be gathered together in their place, that the storm cannot penetrate to them; yea, neither shall they be driven with fierce winds whithersoever the enemy listeth to carry them.
But behold, they are in the hands of the Lord of the aharvest, and they are his; and he will braise them up at the last day. aBlessed be the name of our God; let us bsing to his praise, yea, let us give cthanks to his holy name, for he doth work righteousness forever."
I love josh so much and am so grateful to heavenly father that he sent us that. I needed that at this time. Though I've been having a hard week I've been able to get closer to heavenly father, and that is what trials are for, right? Something happened the other day and spiritually I just kind of snapped, but because I'm getting better I went straight to heavenly father and prayed about it, told him about it, asked him for help, for advice. I had read the scriptures for a while and while they comforted me and I was able to sleep I did not get a direct answer. Until today. I have a testimony that god works through others to answer our prayers and see to our needs just like he did today which was a big tender mercy to me. I know I will continue to have these experience that will help to refine and form me into a better person all throughout this journey but today, I was starting to doubt. So for next time I need to remember not to doubt that a answer will be given or a miracle will take place, because to doubt something is to slowly diminish it's possibility. We just have to believe. So with all my inside things and with my Spanish, I'm going to believe and know that everything will be alright and that I will be able to speak Spanish with the help of my heavenly father.
Friday, July 12, 2013
This week was not exactly all boring and not exactly exciting. Millipede sightings in our home have become a normal occurrence, and we try to be as kind and polite to them as we can and try to leave them alone (except for today in which mom accidentally stepped on one and felt mortified to have committed such an awful crime. So terrible. I assure you.). Then there are our loud neighbors who like to have parties till five AM on Saturdays and also don't mind laughing as loud as they can when the other neighbors (us) are enjoying a nice relaxing down time in the house, or so we had hoped for. We being me. I got quite annoyed with their little rat of a Chihuahua and am convinced I am the one who was sent here to Ecuador to put it out of its misery. I fully intend on buying a sniper rifle and shooting it dead before its next barking fit, which usually occurs around 3 AM. I am of course kidding but do wish the little dog would 'accidently' disappear. Today we had to go by immigration office to have papers filled out that were needed to get our stuff here.. which by the way could take up to six months. No. Thank-you. Again this week I've been having a hard time with missing people but heavenly father has been helping me to deal with it better.. than I was at least. I've been kind of a worry baby but I'm trying to get over it. I just have to keep trusting heavenly father. So besides the little goings on and the worrying not much has been happening.. which I'm sure wont be the report for long but as if now it is. Goal this week: work on not worrying and get over fear of the little millipedes.
Monday, July 8, 2013
Tonight we had the amazing experience to watch and listen over Skype, from 4000 miles away, as my older brother and best friend was set a part as a missionary. Advice was shared and tears were shed, hugs were given and a warm spirit felt. I felt so sad we couldn't actually be at the house with Josh when he was set apart but nonetheless we were there in a way. I want to say a little about my amazing brother Josh who I love so much. Josh has been one of the greatest examples I have ever had and known. He is so smart, kind and funny, he has a fun, colorful personality and is a real people person. He's easy to talk to and he's very laid back. There have been so many times when I have been having a hard time and Josh always just knows what to say, he knows how to handle people. I greatly respect him for that.. not all people can do that. I think that that talent of his and all the others he has will help him out greatly on his mission. I love my brother and he has been and played such an important role in my life. I miss him so much and I'm sure I will more. I don't deserve a brother like him. Josh Dennis, my brother has and will touch so many lives. As the quote says "Missionaries leave their homes and families for two years so others can be with theirs for eternity." I'm willing to share my Joshy for this purpose and this purpose only, that the church is true and that so many people will be touched by his wonderful spirit and great shining light. My mom used to tell Josh and I stories about how Josh would ask when he was little before I was born and before they even knew they were having me "When is Sarah coming?" my parents would ask, "Who is Sarah?" then he would reply "She is my sister and friend, we used to play together in heaven." So, yes I suppose me and Josh have been connected for longer than this earthly life and I guess that is what makes it even harder to be apart from him. I love him so much and want him to be happy. I know that heavenly father feels the same way and even more so for Josh and all of his missionaries. This is a great work that is taking place and Josh is just one of the amazing people out there who are going to see and help perform miracles.
Sunday, July 7, 2013
This morning we awoke to a flooded down stairs due to a broken pipe. This house seems to e cursed with water problems haha but no matter. This being the case dad stayed home to clean up the two inch high lake that inhabited our living room and kitchen. My mom and I went to church. As we got into the parking lot I got kinda scared and almost started to cry. I was really scared to be so immersed in the language I wasn't ready to be thrown in. I felt scared and slightly embarrassed with a hint of stupidity then walked inside. Thank-heavens it was fast and testimony today so I could make out about mm maybe 75% of what people were saying. After sacrament was over we went to sunday school. I got there scared that I would be sitting in the back corner alone.. my a.d.d just so happened to be horrible today, but no, the girls welcomed me warmly and sat next to me in the front. Two of the girls sitting next to me spoke English to my great astonishment! I was so happy I almost hugged them. As my mind wondered and raced, not able to concentrate one of the girls I was sitting by talked to me. This girl had come from new York, her family lived in Ecuador and she is Catholic. She told me about how she had gone to a all girls Catholic school in New York and how she would be staying in Ecuador for a year. We became friends quickly and it felt nice to have someone that understood a bit. Next was young women's.All the girls passed around my scriptures and looked through them, they ran their fingers along my name embossed on the front and smiled. They hadn't seen a quadruple before. Next we separate for classes. All during the class M would translate my answers to the teacher and I would explain a concept to her when she didn't understand. It was one of the coolest experiences I've ever had. I explained to her why our children are baptized at 8 instead of when they are babies, I explained to her what ordinances were and when we make them. All this while (me understanding Spanish but not yet possessing the talents to well speak it) she translated my answers to the teacher and helped me out with words when I did speak in Spanish. Before sunday school she told me she would probably not come but after young womens she said she wanted to try to come. I'm so excited that I have made this friend that I can help in this way and others for example she is going to be learning chemistry and physics but I already have learned it so I told her I could help her with that if she could help me with my Spanish. This is just to cool to be true. I think this girl, this friend of mine, may be one of the reasons I am here. I feel so grateful to have her in my life! I'm glad I made this friend. So, again I say, church today was awesome!!
Saturday, July 6, 2013
Why do people say goodbye? I mean the good part, what is that supposed to mean? That you're parting on positive terms? That you're happy to be leaving them? That the day was good? What? I really don't understand.. why do people say goodbye at all? Saying goodbye is just depressing.. why not see you later weather that means later that day, later that week, even later in life or in eternity. Saying goodbye when I left for Ecuador was like knives on the inside and smiles on the outside.. but in reality and the eternal perspective of things we never have to say goodbye. We will always see the ones we love again weather it be a long time or short time we will. I think if we all just started looking at things the way god does it would save us a lot of sadness and regret. So my new goal is to look at this move and this life the way god sees it, or at least learn how to do so. Things on the inside have been kinda rough for me, but I think if I did this it would help. So that being my thought for the day I will talk to you all later. :)
Thursday, July 4, 2013
Today has been really hard.. seeing everybody with their friends and families and all the fireworks.. I didnt think they celebrated fourth of July here but sure enough there are tons of people partying.. but all of it just reminds me of my friends and family that I can't be with today. After holding it in for a few weeks I finally broke down and just had a good cry. I feel so sad and alone (alone in a way). We have been traveling around our mission to see and speak to the missionaries in the different zones which has been really neat but not being at our house today just makes it a bit worse. Usually our neighbors in our neighborhood all get together and to fireworks or friends will get together and go watch them at the golf course but not today, not next year, and not the next. Just thinking that I'll be gone for three years back for one and then gone for two again on my own mission. To be quite honest I really have been kind of having a hard time.. I try not to let it show but every hour there is a time when I just feel like hiding and crying. I know heavenly father is helping me through this and without him it would be much harder but its just hard and painful for me to think about not having my cousin and best friend minutes away from where I live and being able to talk to her or Josh who we wont even be able to see off on his mission.. he who is also one of my greatest friends.. I just feel so sad. I know things will get better but at the moment I'm having a hard time. I just need someone to talk to.. but I guess for now and always I need to keep talking to the lord.
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Monday, July 1, 2013
Its amazing how fast your feelings can change towards something or a situation. In this case, I was so happy to be in Ecuador and the happiness lasted about two days and then last night it was just horrible. I tried to think about other things, positive things and to be grateful for all the things and people I do have but it just wasn't working. Last night I was thinking about all of the people that I had left and my dog, thinking about Josh leaving on his mission and not being able to be there when he left, thinking about all the things that I really had no control over. Church yesterday was amazing but the rest of the day was down time which meant mentally a lot of time to myself. So with this time on my hands and these things I just couldn't get out, not feeling I could talk to anyone I resorted to writing poetry. Before I did it I said my prayers and as if by some unseen force the words flowed out of me fingers, down the pencil and onto the page, and before I realized.. I had a poem. And an answer to my hearts questions. Though some just pinpointed the problem, others pinpointed and answered themselves it was quite amazing. Last night was a hard night for me and tonight has been a little rough too but if Heavenly Father is a god of comfort (which he is) I know I'll be just fine even if its not for a few days I know eventually I will be. I've had such a bad habit of looking at the bad and it didn't just drop when I came to Ecuador. But as we see in every case, looking at the bad brings sadness and looking at the good brings happiness and when we know that we start getting a little bit better. I hope I will be able to start looking at the positive more and being more Christ like.. this has definitely been out of my comfort zone but I know I will grow to find sources of comfort within the growth zone even if it does not at the moment seem possible. "The word impossible itself says 'I'm Possible'" - Audrey Hepburn