Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Sometimes missionaries get punched in the face

Week 24

November 25, 2013

Well Family Wamily,
   This week was kind of one of those weeks where missionaries get punched in the face, figuratively speaking of course. But it’s okay. I’m sure the next week will be better.
   This week my companion and I felt like the time had come to set a date for a baptism and marriage for the Rodriguez Family. We prayed for them and practiced teaching for them and prayed for them and the time came to invite them. The mom Silvia is all for it, but the dad José got mad at us a little, which I was not expecting at all. He told us that in the really big rainstorm the other day a ton of his crops had been destroyed. I guess people told them that it was because they had gone to the Mormon Church; as if God was punishing them I guess is what he is maybe thinking. Also he surprised us and told us he wasn’t even 100% sure about God, but just reads the bible and the book of Mormon and stuff just to get to know it but not necessarily because he believes it. So that was pretty discouraging. We aren’t giving up on them though.
   Gladis has to move back to Cusco for more treatment. 
   Jimena is doing great but looks like she is going to be living in Calca now, so the elders there will be teaching her.
   And also another of our investigators that I haven’t introduced yet we are going to have to drop. 
  So sometimes it hard to understand why things like this happen and it’s hard not to get discouraged. But I only know that everything happens for a reason, God is in charge, and that everything will be all right in the end. This week was hard, but Satan is the master or discouragement. We can’t let him make us discouraged or we will not be effective. This week will be better. We are going to focus on finding lots of new people to teach and we are going to pray a lot. I hope you all had a great week and I love you tons!
Pictures- waterfall from the last pday and pictures from our Ollanta family night.
 Lots of love,

Hermana beckstead


Week 23

November 18, 2013

Well, this week we learned about the transfers. And I´m not being transfered! I am going to have 6 months in Ollanta and I couldn´t be happier! I am also keeping Hermana Olivares, so that´s the best.
We started working with a woman named Gladis. She is the niece of Hermana Juana (the pensionista). She has come to live with her aunt because of some health issues. Her health has declined to where she has limited physical capabilities (walking is difficult and she can´t speak). She understands everything that is going around her, only she can´t speak. She has  a little computer that she writes to us on. She is really amazing. For the difficulties she has been presented with I am amazed at how well she handles it. Still though, sometimes we will just be eating lunch or something and she will just start to cry. It has been cool to teach her. The other day we watched a mormon message about the woman who was in a plane accident and how she coped with that. Gladis really liked the video and it is a privilege to share with her about why we have challenges in this life.

This week is Thanksgiving? That´s crazy! Being here has really taught me how many things we have to be grateful for, mainly the GOSPEL! It is so awesome. Also, yesterday I was grateful for the lantern mom bought me. With the rainy season upon us, the electricity has gone out with more frequency.
This week I guess I had a little bit of an allergic reaction to an insect or contact with a plant or something because I started getting these blisters on my legs. I was just going to pop the blister, but I decided to ask Hna. Juana if she knew what it was. The doctor happened to be around (because of her niece) and he took a look. Blisters might have well been the plague by the way he reacted. And he did not like my idea of just popping the blisters. I still wasn't real worried about it, but he insisted on calling the president of the mission (this doctor was pretty enthusiastic about his job) and President gave him the go ahead to do whatever needed. So that´s how I ended up with two shots to the bottom and a bucketload of pills. So that was a fun new Peruvian experience!
Anyways, I hope you guys have a great week! Happy Thanksgiving! I am trying to resend a pic of pday shennanigans that I tried to send last week but was unsuccesful.  You guys are the best! Lots of love!
Hermana Beckstead

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Muchas Buenas Dias Hermanos y Hermanas

Week 22

November 11, 2013

Hey Guys!
Hope you guys are doing great! This week was good. Remember the Rodriguez Family (they have a son with tonnns of questions?)? Well we have been teaching them for a while now, and this Sunday the whole family came to church together! That was awesome. We had a really great lesson on the law of chastity the other day. The dad had some doubts, and it was an intense lesson, but we followed the Spirit and it turned out really well. They actually already have their paperwork taken out to prepare to be married. They still have some challenges ahead but they are a wonderful family. Also the other day Hna. Rodriguez told us (in respect to the Book of Mormon) simply: It´s true. Oh she is so awesome. I´m excited for them and that they are making progress in growing in closer harmony to Christ and His teachings. His gospel really does make families happy. I promise.
And If you don´t believe me, try it!
This week we were walking on the side of the road. On one side of us was the road and on the other was this ditch-canal thing. We were walking along as a motorcycle came along towards us. He yelled something in Quechua that I´m guessing was something not very nice and then swerved toward us to run us off the road. It was kind of scary. He literally was going to hit us and we had to choose between the motorcycle and the ditch. I know Heavenly Father helped us to get out of the way really fast because in hindsight it was close. We chose the ditch. Luckily dad gave me long legs and I could straddle the canal. My little companion was less lucky and fell in and got a little wet, but we didn´t get hurt. From this experience I´m glad that the Lord protects us,
that I have long legs, and that people don´t usually try to hurt me because I´m Mormon. So that´s the adventure part of this week.
I love you guys so much it´s crazy! Have a great week! 
Love, Hermana Beckstead

The Picture: Pday Shennanigans

The week where my missionary plaque fell off right as I was standing over the canal

Week 21

November 4, 2013

Hey Guys!
Well, this week Ollanta was kind of crazy. Ollanta had their birthday on Tuesday, and celebrated for three days with really loud music and everyone dancing and not keeping the word of wisdom in the square. Then Wednesday was Halloween, which the kids actually dress up for and went to some of the stores for free candy. Then Thursday and Friday were dia de los santos and dia de los muertos. And everyone went to the cemetery. So this week was interesting trying to find our investigators at home. But here´s a good experience for you.
We are teaching a woman named Marilin. She and the father of her kids live together but aren't married and he is studying to become a Catholic priest. Needless to say, he was not very interested in our message or talking to us or anything, but we had prayed that he would listen to us so we could teach them both together. Well, he did. And not only did he listen but he was actually more accepting and receptive to the message than his girlfriend! He had changed so much that it could only have been a miracle of the Lord. The Lord is powerful and does miracles when we can put just an itsy bitsy bit of faith in Him.
So that´s the miracle of the week. I love you guys and hope this week is awesome!
Oh yeah, and yes, my missionary tag did fall off into a canal and got swept away to  who knows where. But I had an extra so it´s okay. But I still don´t want to make a habit of losing important things in water- missionary tag, glasses, etc. 
Lots of Love!
Hermana Beckstead

Hey Mom, Wanna Peruvian son-in-law?

Week 20

October 28, 2013

It´s the rainy season! This week we were just walking and out of now where came the loudest thunder I have ever heard in my life. It surprised me so bad. I´m an amateur when it comes to the rain!
Good news! we found out that the scorpions are a part of the scorpion family, but don´t actually have venom!  However, a few days after this happy news, my companion found a baby tarantula in the sink. NO! But it´s okay. The Lord protects us. See Luke 10:19
Remember Eulogia? The woman we met by coincidence (doesn't exist in the mission) who had a child who recently joined the church? Yeah, well she didn't investigate the church for very long because she doesn't have time, yeah yeah yeah. So why did we meet? Well, maybe it is because she has a teenage daughter that lives here and is interested in our message. We met Jimena one day when she was with her sister (a member of the church) selling maz amora (the best Peruvian snack ever). Well she has a lot of desires to learn and asks questions. So we´ve been working with her and had plans to visit her Saturday because that´s when her mom said she would be getting back from out of town. On Thursday I was on splits with one of the sister training leaders and we were in the neighborhood. For some reason I felt to go visit Eulogia, even though we weren't really teaching her anymore. We stopped by and found Jimena! She was home! We had a good lesson and learned she was actually going to leave town then and coming back Sunday morning. If we had ignored the feeling we would have come back Saturday and missed her. I´m grateful that the Spirit guides us in this work so we find the people we need to and don´t miss out on these great opportunities to share the gospel with people!
However, our mission right now is really focusing in on rescuing the members of the church that don´t attend. The attendance rate of members is pretty dismal. We were visiting one such member the other day. Visiting this hermana is always an adventure it seems. We were talking just normal and all of the sudden she pulls me into this hug (well, headlock) and holds me there and offers me her son as a husband. She tries sweetening the deal and tells me (all while holding me in a headlock) that she would wash my clothes, brush my hair, and ¨oh, what I would'´t do for you!¨ Well, never having to wash my clothes or brush my own hair ever again sounds like a pretty sweet deal. But I´ll have to pass. I´ve got work to do!
Well hope you all had a swell week. Love you a ton! Happy Halloween!
Hermana Beckstead