Monday, May 30, 2016

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 -- Month #15 - Week #67 - Day #464 - El Dorado, La Entrada, Copan

May 25, 2016

Today was an interesting day, it was rough in the morning, but the afternoon got better... we talked a lot about repentance in our lessons and it was a good reminder for me. Even after all this time I've got issues with some things and I get in trouble with myself. But we're working on it!
Anyways, this morning we went looking for our investigator and helped her make some more tortillas, and she figured out that each one of us makes tortillas in a different manner. I tried to make like them like she did, but I like the way I was first taught better. And it was interesting because Hna Cruz and I could feel the difference in the corn dough they were using. And the comal was very different as well. Tortillas are complicated!

We had lunch with Hna Olympia, and she gave us beef soup, which was pretty good, but soup is hot, and the air is already hot, and the sun is hot, and our bodies were really warmed up from walking around, working in the morning, so we were a puddle. But then we got a fan going, and it was better. And, just to remind you guys, "soup" means giant chunks of things floating in water, with a little bit of salt. I had 2 fist-sized chunks of yuca, half a green banana, half a potato, a baby corn (with the husk still on, of course), and about 3 inches of cow rib with connective tissue and bone still intact. And we also had rice and Coke. Can't forget the rice and Coke.

And then we rested up a bit and headed back out to work. And I was surprised by the interesting visits we had today. Our investigators all opened up and told us things we didn't know before, and I really felt something for them. So I consider that a blessing. And they actually seemed to understand what we were teaching them and had really good questions that helped us understand their thought process and where they're at with their conversion. That's never happened before. So this afternoon was special for me.
And I understood better the concepts of sins of commission and omission (one of the awesome questions Cesia and Roning asked). First, a sin of commission is when you actually do something that you know is incorrect (steal, lie, kill), and a sin of omission is when you choose to not do something that you know you should do (not go to Church, don't pray everyday). Both are equal in the sense that a sin is intentional disobedience that draws you away from God. And, sinning limits our agency due to consequences. From what I observe in simple terms, sins of commission limit or take away the agency of others and then that of yourself (killing someone and taking away their time here on earth, and then you're sent to jail... kinda limits your prospects), while sins of omission first limit your own agency, and eventually that of others (a parent that decides to stop going to Church but tells their children that they have to go... they're not actually supporting their children or helping them to spiritually grow, so it's more likely that they also stop going to Church). And in both cases, you're not moving towards God. You're stopping your progress and moving backwards. So, honestly, sin just isn't good in whatever case. And, sin is different from transgression, so we had to add that aspect to the mix (like when I pushed my sister off the swing when we were 4 years old and I didn't want to say sorry). But both sin and transgression require repentance. It's the same process to recognize that we've done something wrong, feel a sorrow for it, explain and ask forgiveness from God and our fellow man, and make a promise to not do it again. And the fear of messing up again shouldn't prevent us from trying to repent. Though we may have to repent over and over and over from something, we should still continue with the desires to finally overcome it. Heavenly Father understands that.
The Gospel is so interesting! If you take a minute and study and think, you can learn many things. In my case, these are things that I've known about and been taught since I was very little, but it takes a while to actually understand them. And I still don't get everything perfectly. But it's making more sense.

But, on not so much of a spiritual note, apparently we as missionaries protect newborn children from the lechusas. (I love all these old wive's tales. And they're all about crazy women that eat kids. Weird.) Anyways, Cesia and Roning were expressing how they have felt a better presence in their house since we've been visiting them and they like what we've taught them so far (we're making slow progress with them... today we finally taught lesson 3 about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and Roning said that he could come to 1 hour of Church on Sunday!)... anyways... Cesia said that the spirit we bring with us protects Fabian from the lechusas that would want his umbilical cord (from what I understand, a lechusa is a witch that was transformed into this kind of bird, and flies around in the night, looking for newborns to suck the life out of them... I assume from their bellybutton. A saber.) so that was interesting. But we're still trying to help them understand and recognize their answers. Cuz they've definitely received a lot of them, they just don't see them. Or perhaps want to accept them. So we're still trying with them. But Roning being willing to go to Church was a HUGE step. And we're happy! But yeah, we can add lechusa-warding to the list of things we know how to do when we're offering to help give service to people. Also, if you're foot or legs falls asleep (like it did to Hna Cruz in a cita today), you can draw a cross on it and the power of Christ will heal it. Yup.

So, that was a fun day. Lots of interesting things happening. And we have divisions tomorrow and Friday! Whoo! My last time doing divisions here in Copan. It's bittersweet. But I would like to finish my mission being a normal missionary... you just get really, really, really tired as a missionary.

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