“You can’t tell the character of an individual by the way he
does his daily work. Watch him when his work is over. See where he goes. Note
the companions he seeks and the things he does when he may do as he please.
Then you can tell his true character.
“Let us take the eagle, for
example. This bird works as hard and as efficiently as any other animal in
doing its daily work. It provides for itself and its young by the sweat of its
brow, so to speak; but when its daily work is over and the eagle has time of
its own to do just as it pleases, note how it spends its recreational moments.
It flies in the highest realms of heaven, spreads its wings, and bathes in the
upper air, for it loves the pure, clean atmosphere, and the lofty heights.
“On the other hand, let us
consider the hog. This animal…provides for its young just as well as the eagle;
but, when its working hours are over and it has its recreational moments,
observe where it goes and what it does. The hog will seek out the muddiest hole
in the pasture and will roll and soak itself in filth, for this is the thing it
loves. People are either hogs or eagles in their leisure time."
i've been wanting to share this since.... july
29th. haha. better late than never. this is from an email of an hermana i
taught in the mtc who's now serving in Honduras. read on. (ps. she has got SO
MUCH personality you can just sense it in this email!)
i have had a wonderful week and for this email i
want to share a story of one of the most amazing families in the world.
one day all our plans fell through and it was hot
and i was super fruterated becasue i fell twice. well we were walking down a
hill and this lady starts walking towards us, well just up the hill in heels.
we live in a pueblo with no paved roads mind you. so of course i look at this
lady and ask her how on earth do you walk in heels around here. she laughed at
me and said really carefully. haha so we got to talking to her and such and her
son was talking to the missionaries in the city and that she had gone to church
with him the day before and she loved it.
well maria marta and us became rather good
friends. we set up an appt. with her for the next day. we got all ready to go
and visit her and when we got there her whole family was there. 13 people. they
all sat quietly and listened to the message we had to share about the restored
gospel. it was the most spiritual first lesson i have ever had. afterwards they
asked us if we could come by the next day and teach them more, so of course we
said yes. and it was the same. the spirit was so strong. like i have never felt
before. everytime we passed by the spirit grew stronger and stronger.
i quickly fell in love with this family. inviting
them to be baptized was amazing!!! my companion did so. it was her first time
and they all said yes. 7 fechas all in one day.
the second week we were teaching them, luis, the
father of the family, had disappeared. he had been gone for two days and maria
marta told us that he went out drinking and that she hadnt seen him in a ton of
time. well my heart broke. the next two weeks my companion and i along with our
entire district fasted for them. they were present in my thoughts all the time.
they were prayed for my every missionary in our zone. my heart was broken. it
was a feeling bien feo. every day i worried for him and his family.
one day after my companion and i began to
lose faith, he showed up. he was sleeping in front of the elders home. we took
him home and the elders got him all cleaned up and took care of him from
there. well, after 2 more weeks he gave up drinking and everything in that
family had turned around. there was light in their faces and the spirit was far
more present in our lessons when the whole family was together. we continued
preparing them for baptism and they had their doubts just like everyone else
but they chose to do it. Erlin, the son, told us that he couldnt deny the
answers that he had received from god and that he knew what he had to do.
saturday the 27th of july came quick. we prepared
everything for their baptism. everything was perfect, but they werent there. my
companion and i decided that we would go get them. worried of what we might
find we began to plead with God. we ran out of the church to got get the family
abd as we come close to the brige near their house we see a huge group of
people coming towards us. it was dark and we couldnt really see. but then we
hear a Little girt scream las hermanas. my heart melted. i had never been so
happy to see them. the whole family went. the whole family. all 32 of them were
there to support maria marta, luis, and erlin. it was perfect.
sunday the same thing happened. there wasnt
enough room in the church for everyone to fit. it was beautiful. i cannot wait
to see how they progress in this gospel. i love this family and i have
been so blessed to have learned from them and have been able to be a part of
this time of their lives. i will never forget this family. never ever. their
names are etched into my heart.
the gospel is true. the priesthood is real.
prayer works. heavenly father loves us and is aware of us.
you're going to hate me. photo overload. hey! you asked for it!!
okay. so i honestly cannot BELIEVE how quickly time goes here. it's insane. literally insane in my membrane. i've almost been here for three weeks. mind blowing.
all i have to say is that life is absolutely magical and i feel like the happiest human in the whole whirld (ahem. whit? alliteration much? love hugh.)
so. after the whirl wind of goings and comings from the airport and packing, i was yet again sitting in an airport terminal holding this ticket in my happy little manitas.
it was real. it IS real.
(i seriously walk around pinching myself ALWAYS because this is suuuuch a dream to me.)
anyway. a bunch of other teachers and i landed and were picked up from the airport with a group of missionaries.
we drove through the crazy city admiring...pretty much everything.
until we got there.
the famous B on the hillside!
this was my first site of my new home for 12 weeks:
(this is the benemerito/ccm from the entrance)
i walk down this street errrrr time i go home. that blue beauty on the left there is mine!
cute. i live in casita 14!
our living quarters. where i presently sit messaging you.
this is my room and my roomy lauren--who is absolutely amazing, the salt of the earth, and definitely a kindred spirit.
this is the building where i teach in the evening...
...and the building where i teach my morning district.
morning district classroom.
it's total cash because these rooms are way nice and built for a class of, what? 30 alumnos? yet i've got 10-ish missionaries in there. it's quite spacious.
here's the vista outside my classroom:
(the thomas s. monson building. this is where the missionaries have trc and email and such.)
directly outside my classroom!
this is what's called the "zona rosa."
i love studying out here. this is also where we do progressing investigator.
these are my cute sisters in my a.m. district...
and some of my elders. :)
i totally put them on the spot yesterday for a teaching activity where they have to really channel the spirit and teach together....
of course they did a rockin' job. the Lord's prepared the finest missionaries ever!
this is the teacher's zone.
this is where i get to renew some covenants err sunday...
with cuties like this one.
i melt when they speak spanish! love it!
ha ha of course. my barrio (ward) is named after her. literary geeeeenius!
so that's what i do. that's where i love. i LOVE the CCM. it truly is such a sacred place where we are taught from on high. I know that this campus has been prepared for this since it opened. there's an incredibly special spirit here!
on tuesdays i have the whoooole day off. to do whaterrr i desire.
apart from the normal preparation day things like laundry and cleaning and garb, i spend the day running around the city absolutely loving my life.
one time we went to the museo nacional de antropología...
...and i died.
loved it. holy hugest, longest thing of my life, but wow. what culture.
americans are so boring!
here are a few neat things that i enjoyed:
preparation day two weeks ago we went to chapultepec, which is a sick castle in mexico city. it started pouring rain once we got there, but that didn't dampen my experience one bit (pun); it instead amplified my joy.
i must just give a shout out to douglas weatherford and my other amazing maestros who taught me the history behind the monuments, buildings and artworks. i am absolutely RELISHING the experience because of it!
aaaaah mi sor juanita inez de la cruz. LOVE her stuff!
stop. also a huge fanatic of him.
pride. águila devorando a una serpiente sobre un nopal.
preparation day this last week was PHENOMENAL.
get this--i was set apart as a temple worker in the mexico city temple!
stop. see ya later. dreams really do come true.
then we went out with the cutest mom and her son kevin from the barrio. they showed us all around!
including this MALL (can you fathom the architecture?!).
and over to Polanco...where a bunch of jews live. literally. it didn't feel like mexico; it felt like europe! we didn't stand out here--which is a always a plus.
we then we to a little place i'll call ciudadela and wow. you. would. have. DIED. all of you. those cups that i love? yes, i'll be purchasing a cachorro of them. thank you very much. anyways, this place was like the best flea market of the world. HUGE.
this was our vista at the end of all the shops:
and then? a comer! YA. see ya later. taquitos en mi boquita!
and then we passed some ruins to get a popsicle. ha ha. LOVE THEM! (popsicles and ruins, too, but mostly i was referring to the people pictured here ha ha.)
here are just a few random pictures i'll post for the sole purpose of making your mouth water/make you feel jealous/entertain you.
hi. this is a churro relleno with zarzamora (blackberry) and cream cheese. not my favorite, but some of you out there hachoo kaylynn hachoo would sell your firstborn for it. we know where your priorities lay: tabitha....cream cheese....?
thinkin of kay and maril in bakeries like this!
and then dying when i eat celestial ice cream! this is a mexican seed called piñon. think of a pistachio meeting a sunflower seed with creamy coconutty strawberry ice cream. mixed with nicotine and celestiality. makes me shed tears of joy and dream about having more.
okay welcome to the most AMAZING thing on the planet: tacos al pastor. (do you see the pineapple above the meat?! the drippings make the meat so ridiculously rico!)
would you like it with queso? YES YOU WOULD! it may make you sick though. beware.
buuuuut as we alway say down here, vale la pena! aka it's sooo worth it.
on friday night we had a stake party. we danced,
we ate elote (my first one!)
(i mostly did it for two of my companions that always gave me garb for not trying it. but here's the recipe and you tell me if i'm crazy:
1: corn on the cob.
RIGHT?! not the hugest fan. but it was worth the experience.)
then we got to see the whole procession with the flag and felt a little strange saluting our heart, but asi se hace en méxico! (kinda like how we put our hand over our heart, you know? during the pledge? only saluted-style. same diff.)
and then a LEGIT cultural dancing presentation! i was taken back to my days in orchard with mallory keith and our big skirts. wait, why were we honoring asians and latins in the hope of america pageant? cultural diversity in the promised land, perhaps? please, someone help me remember how my huge, yellow, frilly mexican skirt tied into that program.
and then last night was BOMB.
in case you didn't know, it's mexican independence day. TODAY.
so we did as mexicans do and we've been celebrating all week. ha ha! last night we had more flag procession things, more rad-tastic dancing (complete with fireworks, machetes, rooster-moves and the "Army of Helaman" song).
and yes, the missionaries were present.
most of the teachers:
they are seriously the best. i have felt so inspired by them and legitimately honored to be working among them!
aaaaaaaaaaah. all is well here at the mexico city mtc.