It has been exactly a week since I have arrived to the beautiful country of Chile! I LOVE IT HERE. The people are so loving and caring. The climate is beautiful. My dry skin has finally healed thanks to the humidity here. The air quality is very similar to the smog in Utah. Supposedly there are mountains by us, but I can only see them some of the time. So this week passed by like a dream, except it included many hours of sitting in classes trying to learn spanish and how to be an effective missionary. I thought being a RN would help me be an effective teacher of the gospel, but teaching the gospel is something very distinct in itself. It was interesting because one of our teachers was saying the North Americans sort of have an advantage because due to our limited spanish, we have to teach simply. During the first practice lessons, I felt like I had to drive deep into doctrine, however I have learned that these simple truths are the things that really prick the hearts of the investigadors and invite the Espiritu Santo.
Another thing I am working on is trying to view others (especially the Latinos) as nuestro Padre Celestial would. Coming to a new place, it is easy to view yourself as very different than others, but nosotros somos todos hijos de Dios. I am so thankful for the oportunidad I have to pray and serve the people here in Chile. Here in this little corner of the mundo I have the oportunidad to hopefully make a difference in uno personas life. However, I learned this last week, that with serving a mission our greatest convert will be ourself. A mission really opens up your eyes to your weaknesses and what you need to work on to be a better disciple of Christ.
Here in the CCM..we do something called ´"progressive investigators" where we teach a teacher who is acting like an investigador. Mi companera y yo tenemos dos personas...Carla y Pedro. Right now we are able to use Spanglish to teach them...thank goodness. The CCM right now has misioneros from 15 different countries. It is amazing how strong the Latino misioneros are. We were able to go to the temple yesterday, and a couple of them received their endowments during the session, because back home they live far away from a temple.
Comida...like I said during Skype time....no me gusta esta comida, pero yo compre muchas fruta durante mi dia de preparacion. Honestly, I´m not sure if any of the spanish sentences that I´m using in this email are grammatically precise, but I´m trying to use palabras here and there:)
Another thing I am so grateful for is for such a support system. I´m so grateful for family and friends and their prayers. I can feel the support the Spirit is giving me during this time of transition and with el don del lenguas. The past couple days I was able to make contact with Dr. J (who is over all the Chilean missions) and Senores O (who was the couple I met during my mission medical training back in SLC). Im so lucky to have the chance to work with these amazing people for the next 18 months!
Closing thought- one thing that I have been thinking a lot about this last week is love and specifically charity. 1 Cor 13 sums it up beautifully. It is something we must pray, and I know as we have more charity for others, we can feel more profoundly the love of God for His children including ourselves.
Enjoy the journey. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Familias son eternas.