Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Lonnie: Wrapping things up in El Salvador

I can't begin to imagine how hard these next few days are going to be for Lonnie.  I know she is dreading coming home.  If she had her way, she'd stay on a mission forever.  Fortunately for her mother, THAT is not an option.  I have missed her more than I could ever say.  She has always been one of my best friends.  One week from Thursday, my precious Lulabelle will walk off the plane in Salt Lake City...mission accomplished.  I am so proud of her and I know her daddy is too.

So....not a lot of time again this week! The time......is just passing too quickly. I honestly sometimes have no idea what to do with myself. Thanks for everyone's love and prayers. I never could have made it here where I am today without my family and friends (a.k.a. my other extended family) back home. You inspire me each and every day to aspire even higher!

So here goes the copy-and-paste to President:

"We ended another great week with a very happy domingo! We woke up suuuuuuuuuuper early to help our investigators get to church because we ran out of saldo last week on our celular..... #ProbsdelaMish jaja :) But it was great because we were able to--with the help of recent convert Santos--bring two investigators (one who will be baptized this weekend) and three MARC to church, plus the other investigators who came by themselves after we passed by for them. I want to spend the rest of my life doing this, President. ....Waking up early on domingos just to pass by the less-actives or friends that I know who are getting to know the church. At the beginning of the mission, I hated it. I like my sleep. I still do. But as I've continued on in the mission, I've woken up earlier and earlier and earlier. And I still love my sleep and hate waking up early, but I LOVE helping people feel the Spirit in the restored church of Jesus Christ. I love bringing them to true happiness. If it means I go to bed earlier on Saturday nights for the rest of my life, I'll do it. I can't imagine going back to the old wake-up-at-8:45-change-quickly-and-run-down-the-street-to-get-to-church-at-8:55 routine. There is no gratification or happiness that comes from serving others in that and I know that it's not what God wants me to do!

So...this week has been full of a lot of servicio. We cleaned a river #NastyButFun--also, my hands are NOT made for tiny, cheap Salvadoreñan gloves.... I really hope that I don't get some nasty skin disease from picking up garbage and keeping my hand in that disgusting water. jaja

Saturday, we were animating an investigator (who is preparing to be baptized this weekend) to come to church. At first she told us that she wasn't going to come because she had to build an extra cuarto for her daughter-in-law who is expecting her baby any day now. So.....we told her to come to church and that we would come after to help her. So....we brought a pair of clothes to change into and after three hours, we had completed the cuarto. It's a house on the rio, sooo.....the materials weren't the best because they're very poor, but it's the best looking lamina covered cuarto I have ever seen (and probably the sturdiest), if I don't say so myself! :) But I was SOOOOOOO happy while we did it. It was probably the funnest servicio that I have done in the entire mission.

Well....I know the time is short, but I just wanted to let you know, President, that my happiness continues to aumentar every day. I go to bed thinking that I just had the best day of my entire life and then I wake up the next day and go to bed thinking the exact same thing! Life couldn't get any better than this....

But just to end the email this week, I wanted to share one of my A-ha moments this week. On Wednesday, I hit my 18-month mark. I'm not sharing this to be baggy.....I just....I was on interchanges in Nahuilingo and we taught a lesson to one of the newer investigators that the sisters have over there. We were teaching the Restoration annnnd....as I shared Joseph Smith's experience, he interrupted me and asked if I have ever prayed to know if the light he saw was a UFO. Talk about the best way to ruin the Spirit, right? :) Well, I ended up sharing my testimony and it.....the words flowed from my mouth so freely and naturally. It was probably the most sincere and powerful testimony I have ever borne--piercing my own soul as the Spirit testified to me the truthfulness of those words. :) And as I wrote in my journal that night, reflecting in the moment, I realized how that testimony has been strengthened in the time here. I LOVE testifying of the Restoration because it has changed my life and I want it to change everyone else's. I don't know how it happened, but I am no longer that timid sister who was afraid of rejection on the street. I love my Savior. I love my mission. I love my Belizeans and my Salvadoreños and I have learned that perfect love truly does cast out all fear."

Overcome that fear. Show your perfect love. Share this message with everyone. Find true happiness. :)

Love Always,

Hermana McCulloch
Lonnie's Zone while they cleaned the Rio.

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