Monday, October 26, 2015

I love the mission more than anything

Hola Everyone,

Last Monday we did a great FHE with our pensionista. She and her family are semi-active, so we are trying to help them out! In this Family Home Evening we took them on a trip to Canada. We went and walked around the block and had a bunch of situations where they had to make a decision, like helping the old lady with her luggage, going to a party on Sunday, drinking coffee, saying family prayers, things like that. Then we went back to the house and had a discussion about what we should be doing to prepare ourselves for the next life.  We had one room in the house where we had covered everything in white sheets and put lots of candles and turned on all the lights and had a bunch of white desserts and foods to eat. We sat in silence for a moment and taught about eternal families. The mom, Hermana Natali cried and it was a really special moment.

We had intercambios again! I went to Santa Victoria, the area of the office, and spent the day with Sister Alcedo from Lima. She is a sweet girl. The area is really rich over there and they aren't having much success (like the majority of the mission is), but she has a good attitude. She has just been 2 months in the mission so she has a long ways to go still. 

This week here in La Victoria was a tough one. I will admit it. But, every minute was enjoyable. I love being a missionary. I love having my calling and wearing my plaque and teaching and talking to strangers and feeling the Peruvian dirt blow in my face, etc. 

Sunday we had a regional stake conference with all of Peru and Bolivia. Elder Andersen, Elder Soarres (from brazil) and Elder Nash all spoke in Spanish and Sister Esplin spoke with a translator. It was sweet to see the gift of tongues working its magic as cute little Elder Andersen read his talk in Spanish. 

I followed the spirit and read some verses from 1 Nephi 13 in a lesson this week. We were teaching a couple that got baptized in January. They attended the 7th day adventist church before and Hermano Diego knows the bible and loves it better than anyone. So we taught about the Book of Mormon and I felt inspired to share these very strong scriptures with these members. I felt the spirit testify through me and I felt the gift of tongues guiding me as I loving explained the importance of recognizing that the bible isn't as perfect as the completely perfect Book of Mormon. I am so grateful for the scriptures and for what I learn from the Bible and the Book of Mormon daily. 

I love the prophet. 
I love my companion's laugh, it is contagious. 
We made a calendar with the meals for every day. It is sweet!
Lesson of a lifetime: CHARITY
I have learned that charity is an attribute that anyone can acquire. 
I have learned that charity can be felt for every single person on planet earth. 
I have learned that charity is important, and that it is necessary to really become like Christ. 
I have learned that I owe many many apologies to people throughout my life. I am sorry. Anyone who I have offended in anyway, I really truly am sorry and I have thought of you and prayed for you during my 16 months in the mission. I love you. 

My ponderize scripture for the week is Alma 31:34-35. 

I love the mission more than anything. Talk to you next week!

Hermana Pilling

Monday, October 19, 2015

We Overcome Our Fears by Facing Them

Hey Everyone!

This week we did intercambios with Hermana Leiataua and Hermana Esquivel. I was here in La Victoria with Hermana Leiataua. She said the hardest thing has been the language, mostly the language barrier between her and her companion because she can't express how she feels about the teaching methods etc. but she is doing well. She is out here with good intentions. 

We taught an FHE on Monday about testimonies and I re-learned about the power of a simple testimony. A testimony is the truths that one knows by the power of the spirit. I have realized that a testimony is a gift that we are given and we must protect it. I have also learned that it is a talent and we must share it to develop it. One of the scriptures that motivated me to come on a mission was D&C 60:2 (it's about not hiding our talents).

Tuesday we picked up Hermana Monson and Hermana Hebdon because they came down from Jaen for our conferences with Elder Uceda. The four of us stayed in our room and it was soooo fun. Hermana Monson and I are the only 2 going home on December 17th, it's weird. 

So Wednesday from 8-3:30 and then from 6-9 we were with Elder Uceda. I learned so much and there just simply isn`t time to share but his theme was, we overcome our fears by facing them. I learned so much, and the spirit taught me a lot.  Even though I really enjoyed the time spent with Elder Uceda, I left feeling a little discouraged because I just felt like I need to improve so much.  I talked to my companion about it and she is the best and helped me talk through all my fears and worries.  We talked about setting goals and plans to be able to improve and put in practice the teachings of Elder Uceda. I am excited!

A thought I had.... all future missionaries... including and especially my dear brother, you will learn to be a good missionary only after coming to the mission and being a missionary. It comes with practice. So don´t stress about being super prepared before. Do your best to prepare and then have faith and trust that the Lord will help you. 

Anyways, my comp is the best at helping me set goals and helping me improve. She listens and understands. We have so much fun together... but I think I say that about every companion. hahaha. Maybe I am the fun one?

So Sunday we had a miracle. We were walking our normal 'contact loop' because our appointments fell through.  We were just walking along and I was naming off the streets as we passed them to try to learn the area a little better. Then I said this is Mayta Capac. My comp said yes, good job.  We kept walking a block or two then I stopped. I said, "Hey, Elder Woolstenhulme gave us a reference for a lady here on Mayta Capac."  So we started looking for it and found that her name was Aida and she lived on Mayta Capac 1371. So we looked up to see where we were and we were right outside her house. We knocked a couple of times and she finally came out. She was a little hesitant to let us in, but finally did and we were able to share a little bit with her. She accepted the invitation to be baptized and then offered a very personal and heart felt prayer correctly. We left and as we stepped out the door I started to cry. I had goosebumps and I was so grateful for the Lord and the spiritual prompting I received in that moment. The Lord works in mysterious ways. 

One lesson of a lifetime I have learned is that God loves ALL of His children. Whether we are contacting or teaching. Whether it is a less active or a recent convert or members or other missionaries; whether they are hard core catholics or atheists, I feel the love that God has for each and every one of his children. Whether I am happy or sad, praying or teaching, I always feel the love my Father in Heaven has for me. I know that he is always aware of my trials and my feelings and is always there to strengthen me when I need it most. I love my Heavenly Father. I Love my saviour Jesus Christ. I am so grateful for my knowledge that I am a daughter of God. 

Hermana Pilling

OH... my ponderize scripture for the week is Helaman 5:8

Monday, October 12, 2015

Your Attitude is Everything

Goodbyes in Jaen are awful because it is the last goodbye. In Chiclayo you at least have the hope to see people again, like at the airport and stuff like that. But Jaen is official. I sobbed like a baby and I forgot that Hermana Avila wasn't coming with me so I didn't hug her and then she yelled, "Don't forget about your daughter!" and I started crying even harder! I didn't think I would ever see her again and that is sad. She is seriously my best friend and I love her so much! Anyways, those goodbyes made it just that much more real that I will have to say those goodbyes again in 10 weeks or something like that. I don't want to leave Peru. 
I spent the night in San Felipe when I first got here. It is always great to see Hermana Wood and my pensionista there. It brings back so many memories!

Hermana Wood

So we got to the change meeting and they show all the newbies first. There is a sister from Hawaii and one from California but her family is from Samoa and then 3 others. Well one of them, Hermana Butterfield from Bountiful Utah, is in Jaen.  She is my granddaughter. Hermana Avila is training! I can't even explain the excitement I felt when Hermana Avila's picture showed up! That is so exciting.
Okay, well everyone was called and I was the only one left. So before they even said my name I stood up and they made a joke about saving the Canadians for last... anyways. I am here in the zone La Victoria, area La Victoria and my companion is Hermana Guillèn from Ecuador. We have been called as Sister Training Leaders! She got to Chilcayo with me but because I was in the MTC longer she goes home in February. She is 24 years old and she is tall. 

Hermana Guillen

As sister Leaders we go to the leadership training meeting every month with President and Sister Williams and the assistants. We also have to do exchanges with our assigned sisters. We have been assigned 5 companionships of sisters and they belong to 3 zones, one is a little far away, so we are still trying to figure out how to plan out all of those but I am looking forward to the opportunity to learn from so many sisters.

Here in the area there isn't very much going on. I love our pensionista, but every one of my pensionistas has been very different. So ya. 

My ponderize scripture for last week was Alma 36:3 and for this week it is Mosiah 4:9. Feel free to join me as we ponderize these scriptures.

It is so cold here in Chiclayo. I am sure you have now looked at the temperature and think I am crazy but I am honestly so cold always. Holy cow. I don't know what I will do when I get home and there is snow on the ground. 

One "lesson of a lifetime" I have learned during my mission is:
Your attitude is everything. your attitude towards the mission, your companion, your area, the leaders, trials, family members, teachers, friends, school. Everything! I have seen the changes in the outcome of every day as I change my attitude to be more positive. I am so grateful for naturally being a positive person, just like my daddy, and I have seen the blessings of that. Enjoy the moment, find joy in the journey, be happy, smily, giggle, laugh.  Life is good. 

Love you all!

Hermana Pilling

Monday, October 5, 2015

Feeling Blessed

Well, I don't have any time and I don't remember what happened the beginning of the week. Friday we went and said bye to Hermana Waite. I sobbed. It just got real that missions end and mine is getting closer. Also, Hermana Hebdon has been with us since Thursday because she needed a companion! So it was a little crazy Friday. Saturday morning the zone leaders called us and told me I have transfers. So so sad. I teared up a little but then he cheated and somehow knew that I am going to Chiclayo and that made me happy. I don't know. Cambios have always been tough, I don't like goodbyes, but as soon as I am officially with my new companion I feel so much peace. I know that each companion and each area has been for my personal growth and has shaped me has a missionary. I love it!
Sis Waite is done her mission.  Goodbyes are hard.

I absolutely loved general conference. I applied the counsel of Elder Bednar from September and listened to what wasn't spoken and I learned so much from the spirit. Saturday night we taught Sharon, this 18 year old girl. She accepted a date to be baptized the 17th of October! I am so excited for her, she is such a sweetheart with a huge testimony. She was sad when we told her I won't be there but I am just happy she is so eager to make the necessary changes to be able to live with her Father in Heaven again. 

Sunday morning we weren't able to watch in English. I know I understand spanish completely but it is different. So I was a little bummed but after, I reread my notes and they were allllll in english. The spirit spoke to me in english and I learned so much. After the Sunday afternoon session I went to say bye to a family. I don't like goodbyes! And this family has been so amazing during my 2 1/2 months here.  I took so many pics and I am hoping to send them all. 

After all is said and done, I feel very blessed to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints with modern revelation and a living prophet. I testify that the 3 new apostles are called of God. Elder Stevenson came to Chiclayo with Elder Bednar and that is pretty cool. 

I am going to miss Hermana Avila so much. She is my best friend and I have grown so close to her. One bad thing about having a latina is that the possiblities of us seeing each other again are very low, and I am saddened by that. But I know she will always be my ¨daughter¨. 

Here is to new things!

Love you all!
Hermana Pilling
Hermana Avila and I.  Love her!