Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The Will of the Lord

20 Junio 2016

This week we received transfers (super fast right? the time is FLYING) and I have my new (and last) companion! Her name is Hermana Villavicencio. She is 34 years old and is from Santa Cruz Bolivia. She has been on her mission 10 months and is a sweetheart. I don’t think that she could say anything bad about anyone :) And she is a wonderful missionary and I know that she will be able to take care of this area after I leave.

Cosmos has been a true challenge for me and continues to be a challenge for me. It has been hard to get members to accompany us, to help our investigators to progress, to get people to come to church, to get up the mountain every single day, and for some reason it is super hard to sleep at night. And I have been working so hard to feel like I am making a difference here. There are the hard times where I question myself if I really am making a difference here in my last, little time here. And I can honestly say I know that Heavenly Father is going to help me to make the very most of the time that I have left here and that HE can truly make a difference through me. It may be that I can’t see all of the results right now or that I won’t be able to see all of the results in this life, but I can feel the confirmacion of the spirit that He is using me as an instrument in His hands and all of these experiences are preparing me for so much more. :)

In my mission I have received a powerful testimony that Heavenly Father knows us and knows what is best for us in the moment. There are times in my life and in my mission where I thought `the best thing for me is...or, ‘It would work out perfectly if...` and when it doesn’t work out the way that I want, I would question why. There are times where we all have our own will and we think that we know what is best for us. BUT now I can see in the long term the Lord knows what is best for all of us and I have the faith that He has a time and plan for EVERYONE. WE may be planting, cultivating or harvesting in the work of the Lord but when we are doing His will we will always be making a difference in the lives and hearts of others. YOU are making a difference—don’t second guess it--just do it and be an instrument in His hands and He will make up the difference.


Hermana Amber Mather

Me and my new companion Hermana Villavicencio

A few friends from the mission :)

A picture from the fireside that we had the other week :)

Fruits of the Labor‏

13 Junio 2016

Facts that a few people asked me about this week:

1. Why is your area called Cosmos? Because the hill is so big that, at night when you look at it, all of the lights from the houses look like the stars in the sky (at least that is what I was told ;D)  [see photos below]

2. Who are you teaching? To be honest, this area has been quite a challenge. These past few weeks, we have felt like we are doing everything that we can, but we just aren’t seeing the fruits of our labors. If we have a progressing investigator, they move to Chile.  Or, they are younger than we would like or they don’t have family support to be baptized. Or, they start avoiding us. BUT, we have been changing things up this week by focusing on talking to everyone that we pass by in the street and to help people follow through with their commitments. It has made a few small changes in the people that we are teaching so we’ll see what we can do this next week.

Wow, but honestly this week was so amazing. It definitely finished with a bang with the ´Noche Fogonera´[Evening Fireside] that we put on as missionaries in the Jaihuayco Stake. And you wouldn’t guess…I sang. a solo! I have never done that before in my life and I wasn’t able to do that before because I was always so nervous in front of people. The mission has taught me a lot of things but one thing that it has help me with is that I’m not so nervous in front of people as I was before. Don’t get me wrong, I was nervous, but I was praying and pleading to Heavenly Father that it would turn out well and it did! I sang “His Hands” in Spanish. I love the words to this song; they are so beautiful! Honestly, it makes such an impression to me, focusing in on the Hands of Christ and all that He did for us and how we can follow His example in our lives! I loved the strong Spirit that you could almost touch in the room! It was so special to have a night of testimonies and music. After everything finished, I received the most amazing gift that any missionary could receive of seeing my very first convert in the mission there (do you remember Paula? SHE Was There!) and have her tell me that she has a calling and is preparing herself to go on a mission. She was the first of her family to be baptized and then her sister and her mom were baptized. I am still pleading to Heavenly Father that her Father can open his heart and be baptized so that they can be sealed in the temple one day. They are a beautiful family and I am so happy for the blessing that I had to teach her and her family. It truly helped me to see that the small and simple things that we do in the mission turns into grand things that come to pass! The Fruit of the Labor!

I feel when something gets easy for me, Heavenly Father changes things up so that it is a challenge again and so that I can learn continually. One thing that I learned this week is that we need to explain to our investigators, friends, children WHY we do the things we do: pray, read, come to church. I feel like we have been doing these thing so long that we forget that a lot of people don’t know WHY they need to follow through with these little things in their lives. When they know why, I feel like it is easier for them to keep their promises and to see the blessings come flowing forth from doing it.

Love you all!

Hermana Mather

PS. This week: PICTURES!

Me and my compi, our area ;D


The lights from the houses on the Cosmos hill look like stars in the sky

Service that we did a couple of weeks ago -- arranging flour bags :)

A group of recent converts that we took to the temple for the first time! So great!

The family that I taught in my first area that ended up being sealed in the temple

Me with their mom Altagracia

hehe -- We were helping our investigator Marta close up her Tienda (store) to go to an activity at the church.

Here is Cosmos! So beautiful and so much hills!

This morning we were cleaning house and we thought ´Why not?
hehe! My face is just hilarious!

Monday, June 6, 2016

If the Savior Stood Beside Me‏

6 Junio 2016

This week was a challenge for me and my companion. We were ready for the week with important appointments ready and a member that would be able to accompany us for every day, but I think that the Lord teaches us a lot of lessons when things just don’t go as planned. Almost all of the members called us the day that they were going to come with us and told us that they wouldn’t be able to. All week long, people that we had appointments with just weren’t there. I had problems with my feet, my companion was a little sick, and we were just exhausted all week. But in all honestly, that is when the faith and hard work come in.  There are hard days that come in all of our lives, but keeping a smile on our face and purpose in our step helps us to unlock the true purpose that the Lord has for our day :D

This week made me ponder: do you think that Christ had weeks like that? I think so. I think that He made the best of every single situation even if it wasn’t planned on. He had the hardest of weeks that mine could never compare to and He didn’t do it for Himself. He did it for all of us. I have definitely felt His enabling power lifting me up and keeping me going and telling me that all will be worth it in the end. I know that I really am not doing much. I am just an instrument in the hands of the Lord and I don’t glory in myself but I glory in Him who sent me. I truly do feel like the Lord walks beside all of us in our lives and helps us along the way. We just have to put our hands in His and have faith in His purposes for us.

Thanks for reading! I hope that this helped you guys out as well for this week to come! I love you all!

Hermana Mather

[No pictures due to a virus on my camera memory card.  I will try to get some pictures from my companion next week.]

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Families and the Image of Christ‏

30 Mayo 2016

This week I have been able to see the blessing of families and how grateful I am for amazing families that are forever. I had the AMAZING experience of going to the sealing of one of the families that I taught in my first area in the mission. WOW can I just say that families are such a blessing in our lives and who wouldn't want to be with their family forever? I have seen my share of sadness in families-one family in our area that is just breaking apart. As missionaries we get to see through the eyes of Christ and see their true potential. Families have such an amazing potential in the eyes of the lord- that is why we have Temples- to make families eternal. so it is so amazing to see a family so beautiful to become eternal. what a blessing that we all have the opportunity to receive!

This week I was reading in Alma 5 and this chapter will never stop touching my heart every time that I read it. Specifically I love these verses:

14 And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?

15 Do ye exercise faith in the redemption of him who created you? Do you look forward with an eye of faith, and view this mortal body raised in immortality, and this corruption raised in incorruption, to stand before God to be judged according to the deeds which have been done in the mortal body?

 16 I say unto you, can you imagine to yourselves that ye hear the voice of the Lord, saying unto you, in that day: Come unto me ye blessed, for behold, your works have been the works of righteousness upon the face of the earth?

I love this! I would love to have the imagine of Christ in my countenance! As a missionary I feel like I am working towards that every single day and week and month until the very end of my mission and the end of my life. Become more like Christ so that others can recognize Him through me. I hope to be able to do that one day! :)

I have been asking myself these questions this whole week and it has become my motivation to be able to finish my mission strong and be able to imagine our Heavenly Father saying `your works have been righteousness upon the face of the earth`. Work Hard. Pray Fervently. Fast with true intent. Study hard. I desire to do all that I can to make the most of my mission here -- every single second :)

That's all for this week! Keep up the great work and help the missionaries out -- they really appreciate it!

Hermana Mather