Happy Valentine´s Day everyone!!! I hope it´s a great day for all of you. I´m sure it´ll be terrible for all missionaries in Latin America. The culture already doesn´t have any problems with public displays of affection and a holiday dedicated to love is an open invitation. The truth is, yesterday when an investigator mentioned that Valentine´s Day was coming up I froze. I was a crazy shocked that almost made my heart skip a beat. I remember exactly what I did last year during Valentine´s Day. It seemed so close but a year has gone by since then. I couldn´t accept that a year of my mission has almost finished. I really don´t want to. It was a frightening splash of reality, but at the same time nostalgic because I remember everything I did that Saturday night and Sunday while I was out visiting in Utah. I´ve developed this fear of time while being in the office. I´m slowly realizing how much time goes by and that with the little time I so have to teach I don´t want to waste it. At times I feel like I´m battling with nothing. As if there wasn´t any time and we have to get results anyway. With those feelings I have learned that God really does guide his work. I doubt that boys like us could turn out results with such little time. So more than anything it´s a blessing.
Last week I didn´t have time to put something in the letter. First of all, I saw Erick Sanchez, the investigator who got shot the week of his baptism. Elder Shannon and his comp Elder Arevalo came to the office one day and brought Erick with them. Man it was SO great to see him. I gave him a huge hug. He was all dressed up because he accompanies the missionaries on visits. He´s also getting ready to go on a mission. How awesome would that be to have a convert in the mission field before I even finish my mission? I think he might go out a little bit after I finish, but it´s a possibility.
I saw Hermana Ampuño this week. I knew that she was coming here because her sister is getting married. Élder Silva and I were walking over to the Civil Registry to withdraw some passports. I saw that we were getting a call from Juan Ampuño. I answered thinking he was going to ask if we needed his help. When I said hello Hermana Ampuño responded. I literally stopped dead in my tracks. I couldn´t even respond. She asked if anyone was there because I couldn´t speak. I responded that I was Elder Vuinovic, but couldn´t say much more. Later we needed Juan to help us out with a few appointments, so hna Ampuño came too. It was so crazy to see her! I loved the MTC so much. Everyone I met there helped me out in so many ways to be ready for the mission. I truly owe them a lot. Not to mention I had the best teachers in the world while I was there. I dare anyone to try and challenge me on that. Haha!
Christian Sari is an investigator that has a baptismal date this next week. Monday we went over to his house to teach him and we found him very sad. He was a little mopey so we asked him how he was doing. He told us that he fell, and that he had gotten drunk with some friends on Sunday. He really didn´t want to go. He was refusing, but he´s a little slow, so with time he gave in and just went with them. He told us that they weren´t true friends, and that he wasn´t going to hang out with them anymore. As he told about what happened we saw how repentant he was. I was touched to see how much he wanted to change. He told us that the next morning he felt terrible and repented by kneeling and praying. We taught the plan of salvation with the Word of Wisdom, and went over the part about our lives on earth, that we need to overcome the obstacles that we will face. It was a really great lesson, and I was honored to be of help to him in his path of repentance.
Something I´ve learned, more like realized, is how much I´ve learned about love. Nothing romantic, rather a true and eternal love. One day, I was sitting my room, at my desk, thinking. I felt really crappy because I felt like just cubicle slave, with little importance. Being able to look back on my time in the mission I realized how many people that have become a part of my life and how much I truly love them. Not just a casual love because we hang out and do cool things, rather a love that came from service and from having lived the Gospel in our lives. Understanding this I became very grateful for what I have received, and realized that I didn´t comprehend what love really was before my mission. Just know that I truly do love you all, truly.
In my scripture study this week we found a BOATLOAD of great scriptures. One that I´m really excited to use with investigators is Mormon 7: 8-9. TO be honest, it sounds a lot clearer in Spanish. It´s explaining that the purpose of the Book of Mormon is to help everyone believe the Bible, and if you believe the Bible than you will believe the Book of Mormon. SMACK! Also, it´s a great intro to the baptismal commitment.
Anyway I love you all and have a great Valentine´s Day/week!