It's been a great week! We had a great thanksgiving dinner with the Lopez family, a miracle find that is preparing for baptism this month. Their biggest obstacle is that their single mom, Alejandra, works on Sundays and hasn't been able to come to church. But we have lots of hope! Also, after a month of no baptisms, 7 people were baptized this last weekend in our zone! That was really exciting.
The biggest miracle Elder Trujillo and I saw this week though was with the Barrios family. The 4 kids and Hermana Barrios have been meeting with the missionaries for over a year, but the dad hasn't wanted anything to do with them--he's sat in for at least one lesson, but he's been the biggest obstacle to the family's progression. On Saturday night we visited with the kids and commited them to come to church, and the next day they showed up with the ENTIRE family, including the oldest daughter's boyfriend and the dad!! We couldn't believe it. They only stayed for sacrament meeting, but Hermano Barrios seemed relatively comfortable, and we think he'll be more open to listening to us now. I was fasting that we would have the opportunity to baptize a complete family this month, and while I don't know for sure if it will be the Barrios', I really hope it is.
I also gained a stronger testimony that as we keep the Lord's commandments and do His will, he guides us to where we need to be. I was on exchanges with Elder Henze on Friday (maybe next week I'll tell you about how he jumped out at me that night with a gorilla mask when I was coming out of the bathroom and scared my socks off), and at one point we stopped at a 7-Eleven to use the bathroom. We figured we might as well get some hot chocolate and doughnuts while we were there, and as we were in line to leave, I had an impression I needed to talk to the guy behind me in line. I put it off until we got outside, and just as he was walking away I asked him if we could give him a card. We started to introduce ourselves and he said he already knew who we were--his recently-deceased aunt had taken him to the Mormon church several times in Mexico and he had met with the missionaries there. He asked us for the address of the church and said he would come. It's not the first time I've seen something like that happen, but I couldn't help but smile as we talked to him, because something just told me the Lord put us in his path for a reason and that He would continue to work with the man. There's nothing like feeling that Heavenly Father has used you to bless someone elses life or answer a prayer! I understand a little better what Ammon was talking about when he said,
"I know that which the Lord hath commanded me, and I glory in it. I do not glory of myself, but I glory in that which the Lord hath commanded me; yea, and this is my glory, that perhaps I may be an instrument in the hands of God to bring some soul to repentance; and this is my joy" (Alma 29:9).
Each and every one of us, missionary or no, can experience that kind of joy as we find the courage to follow the promptings of the Spirit, look for opportunities to serve, or just open our mouths and speak to those around us with kindness. The Savior lives, He loves us, knows us perfectly, and is ready to pour out blessings as we repent and submit our will to His.