A dangerously acute account of 18 months in Nicaraguan Territory.
Rain just keeps peppering the streets all of the days, but I´m just ever so happy below my umbrella, nice and safely half-way dry. It´s rather fun to find ways across the street rivers.
Speaking of rivers, the other day we went to a part of our zone that had yet to be adventured. we discovered a quaint little group of houses and were given a reference for another group. Following the path as we had been instructed by the Natives, we came to a large black river, the which was moving at the pace of a sloth on a hot day. I´ll let you figure out why the river was black, but the actual cool part is that we had to cross this body of water on the oldest wooden bridge I have yet to see that wasn´t in Disneyland, I felt like Hermana Indiana Jones. The real challenge was knowing wether to cross slowly so as to not move the UNNAILED boards, or just to run, and hope that the board in front of you didn´t fall off. My companion and I were laughing and crying as we crossed it, probably was the adrenaline rush.
Another rush we received when we FINALLY baptized Gabriel, the most pilas investigator I´ve had in my mission. He was attending seminary more faithfully than the members and was bringing investigators to church for us. He was SOOOO happy to be baptized and be able to be part of his new family. He received the Aaronic Priesthood the same day and was ordained to the office of a Priest. It was wonderful to hear his voice in the night session, blessing the water of the Sacrament. This is how we really establish the church, not just baptizing numbers, but making people become active, contributing members of the Church of Christ.
I love thinking that this gospel is something we do together, but at the same time, our greatest conquest will be ourselves, to see how we were and who we are now, make a vision of who we want to become. The Lord´s prophet, Thomas S. Monson, says it best ´´ One of God´s greatest gifts to us is the joy of trying again, for no failure ever need be final´´. i hope we put goals, that we try, and that we reach them, no matter how many times we fail. Isn´t this, or in other words, repentance, what the Lord sent us here to learn?
-Hermana Naomi Beatty
Life is like a dream when.....
1. You see a bunch of less-actives that you activated and your own recent converts receive the Melchizedek Priesthood in Stake Conference.
2. You complete one whole year of being a missionary and then start panicking because you`re running out of time.
3. You calmly do an unprepared arrangement of a primary song for the Stake Conference and then suddenly go into a hymn that isn`t in the same key so you transpose it in your head, all the while listening to some very off-pitch young women and trying to follow the very liberal arm of the Stake President`s wife.
4. You are on divisions to bring people to church on Sunday morning and you`re walking through a small path. One dog starts the whole `` nip-at-your-heels`` thing, but his barking brings a herd more. Pretty soon you`re just clinging to the sister at your side while a million dogs bark and growl at you as you walk on. (yeah, the sister I was with totally related that to the 17 miracles movie. not the same, but I felt the same type of panicking fear).
5. You calmly finish directing the choir of missionaries and sit down to prepare yourself to listen to a member of the seventy. He then gets up and says ``we`ll now have a brief testimony from Hermana Beatty, after which I will address you`` (now that one definitely felt super dreamy...... it`s been a while since I`ve been that jittery)
6. You and your companion baptize the sweetest little mother in the world. Sesilia is the neighbor of an ancient member. And she just wanted to be baptized so she could be closer to the Lord. It was such a lovely service!
7. You and your companion spend p-day in Corinto (a.k.a. Island of Nicaragua that is SUPER hot and SUPER beautiful). It was especially fun to just walk along the beach and take pictures together. However, something happened and watch as I totally relate it to the gospel (because you pretty much can do that with anything). We were walking on the beach, the lower part, where the waves were. When the high-tide comes in, it had caved a wall in the sand that was about 12 feet high. When we got to a certain point, we couldn`t continue forward, but had to go up. My companion just laughed and laughed as I tried again and again to climb this wall, but it just wouldn`t work, mostly because it was sand and the sand just came down everytime I tried to get up. In the end, we had to backtrack, but I thought of it this way: we are all in this situation spiritually. We cannot reach the top because we don`t have the power to overcome the sand (sins). But, Jesus Christ, can help us. We literally need him, notwithstanding our own strength, to save us. He alone can do it, and no one else. And that is why I feel extremely happy to be a member of His church :)
I`m so glad we had this time together, just to have a laugh or sing a song, seems we just get started and before you know it, comes the time we have to say, so long!!! (thank you Carol Burnett)
From the movie "In Search of the Castaways"
Dear Human Species,
I have been lucky enough to deliver you a small message today about how wonderful life can be when you keep the commandments! Even if they are just little things, they can make your life literally light up.
Blessings of the week:
1. There was a sale at the gas station where it was three snickers for C$ 150 (about 6 dollars). All the North American missionaries splurged and had a good five bites of paradise.
2. I was able to do divisiones with a new Hermana who knew absolutely nothing. She reminded me of the importance of working faithfully in all that we do. Don´t just work to work, rather, work to serve God in all that you do.
3. My recent convert Miguel left to do visits with us and it was amazing to hear him testify. I think I shall share a part of his words: ´´ sometimes we think we´re not ready to be baptized. But we just have to trust more in God than we do in our own strength. If we really love him, we will live His Gospel, no matter what we have to sacrifice´´. The investigator who heard his testimony is getting baptized on the 30th... I just love him so much!!! (And he brought his daughter to church.... he is GOLDEN!)
4. We had one of the highest attendances in church that we´ve had in a loooooooong time. It was amazing to see how happy everyone was just to see other members.
5. The electricity and water weren´t working for quite a few days, but nothing happened to us in the nightly hours and we always seemed to have just enough water drip into the buckets to shower.
Book of Mormon challenge (if you so desire): Mosiah 2, comprehension question: what is it that God wants us to do?
Have a great week folks!!
Here I lay me down to sleep!
This is where we would shower if there was water, but instead we use the buckets!
By Bruno Mars
Well, we`ve been experiencing an interesting weather cycle in which it rains really hard at about mid-day and then right around tea-time, the sky clears up and out comes the hot sun that doesn`t dry up anything. It`s actually been causing more than enough damage with my shoes, my bag, the electricity, and water. We`ve been about three days without water and two days without electricity. I just about died on Sunday when everyone put this as their excuse for not going to church. ``hermanas, there isn`t any water! we can`t go to church if we haven`t bathed!``.. I thought about telling them that I hadn`t bathed, but was still going. Yeah, I decided against that one when I realized they probably wouldn`t accept a return appointment if they knew that I hadn`t bathed (that`s a REALLY BIG DEAL for Nicaraguans)
I have been having quite the interesting week because of a muscle I pulled in my side.... I think that the name sartorious is vaguely coming back to me from 10th grade human biology... that`s either a muscle in your ribs or a spell from Harry Potter...... but the point is, this muscle hurt so bad..... but only when I laughed.... it was actually one of the worst weeks of my life because I would make my own jokes and then laugh and then cry because it hurt so bad.... the life lesson to be learned here is that laughing is good, but too much laughing can make you cry. So don`t laugh to much, my friends.
It was so wonderful to see the progression of our investigators. It`s amazing to me that they already know their responsibilities that they will have to complete with as members of the church that Christ established. Gabriel and Ulyssess are going to institute and seminary and David went to go look for a white shirt and tie for church :) the gospel just..... CHANGES people..
Now, for the miracle of a lifetime, our good friend Miguel, whom you all heard about in the month of April, was finally able to be confirmed this Sunday a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He received the Holy Ghost and I just bawled my little eyes out to finally see him start again on this path to Heavenly Father. There is only one door to enter the path to God and this is Baptism. In front of the door, someone with the keys of the Priesthood opens it for you, but you`ve got to keep on going, fighting to get to the next door and guardian and the next door and guardian and finally, we will come to the door of the celestial kingdom. He will be there with the keys to enter. There will not be scratches on the door because only those who want to be with Him will have entered. And if we like living the commandments, we will also enter.
``O then, my beloved brethren, come unto the Lord, the Holy One. Remember that his paths are righteous. Behold, the way for man is narrow, but it lieth in a straight course before him, and the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel; and he employeth no servant there; and there is none other way save it be by the gate; for he cannot be deceived, for the Lord God is his name.``
A dirt mishap
Happiness with my girls
sung by Wiz Khalifa
Let`s just say that this past week was indescribably crazy!!! I`ve never worked so hard on my mission, but it really payed off in the end. We were able to bring 9 people to church yesterday and when I was sitting in the sacrament meeting, looking at the pews just so full of people, I just thought WOW. The spirit kind of responded with something like `look what you can accomplish Hermana Beatty when you actually give it your all!` Alright, Holy Ghost, lessoned learned. I will definitely be working a lot harder on that one.
One of the best miracles of all was talking with David about the Book of Mormon. He was kind of drunk when we found him, but when we went to his house the next day, he was totally cool. He had actually received the missionaries before, but they didn`t come back because his parents ran them out. In his own words, `they came here a while ago, but then they started saying weird stuff that Jesus was resurrected and then came to visit the people here, so we chased them away because that`s crazy`. my companion just looked at me for a second then started laughing her head off. forty five minutes later, we had him committed to read the Book of Mormon and ask God if it is true. Sometimes it just takes Hermanas to straighten things out ;) *Note: not meant to downplay the role of the Elders in Conversion
I also had these crazy dreams this week, that Elder Russell M. Nelson was taking us as a mission to the Salt Lake Temple (cue the hallelujah chorus), but then I woke up. I also had a dream in the which I was at SUU, going to a party and when I got there, I asked everyone`s name. They in turn asked mine. `hermana Beatty`I told them. They just told me `no it`s not`. At that point, I started crying in my dream and looking franctically for my missionary nametag. I woke up from this nightmare, when and got my nametag, put it on, then went back to sleep. Being a missionary is just way to cool to cut the time short.
When we received the message from our mission president that Elder L. Tom Perry had died, it was kind of a wake-up call. There is just so much work to do, here on the earth and in the spirit world. It`s time we followed the example of this great apostle and started doing our part to bring others to Christ. One of my favorite hymns, written by this great prophet, embodies the emotion I feel when I think about the Lord: As now we praise thy name with song, the blessing of this day will linger in our thankful hearts and silently we pray for courage to accept thy will, to listen and obey. We love thee Lord, our hearts are full; we`ll walk thy chosen way` I hope that we all have this submissive attitude when it comes to obeying and submitting ourselves to the will of the Lord. After all, He knows us better.
Nica Lasagna...it turned out more or less
True joy can only be found in things from the country of one`s origin
This is the sky I wake up to (you can`t see the volcano, but it`s there)
hola! I'm Naomi and I love reading, my amazing family, and the color green.