It's such a good week to be a Texas Dallas missionary :) Why? It is every week. I'm convinced I am in the best mission in the whole world! So Monday night we headed over to meet the family of the family Chequer. I guess his sister lives in the same apartment complex as they do. We shared a scripture with them and a friend of the sister was there to so we ended up getting a few new investigators so it was awesome :) I said the most embarrassing thing though... so the people from Ecuador (where they are from) have the coolest accent in the world!!! So I started saying how I loved their accent and jokingly added more from the people from Mexico. Then they all start going OOOOHHH!! turns out the husband to the sister's friend was from Mexico. He wouldn't look at me for a solid 5 minutes after that. Whether it was intentional or not I am not really sure :) Ha! They all knew I was joking I think and it all ended up being funny but man oh man it was so embarrassing. I gotta be more careful of what I say. New Years Eve was just a normal day for us. I have kind of expected to see a lot of people out drinking but there really weren't a lot of people out at all. It was just a regular day. That day we went and visited our lady that sang to us! I don't remember if I talked about her but we met her outside and offered to rake her leaves. She then started telling us all about how she had become Christian and converted from being a Catholic. She ended up letting us in and she sang to us :) One of my faovritest cutest old ladies! She looks exactly like my Grandma Jean too. I'll send a picture :) Wednesday was a day of miracles. Remember Irene y Omar? We went back and they had read a chapter that we left them in the Book of Mormon about faith. Omar told us of how at one point in his life if we would have met him or seen him we would have that he was homeless. He had next to nothing. Everyone told him that he would never make it out of that life. Here he is in America. He speaks english really well and he has a house, wife, and 3 kids. He made it :) But he started to get teary-eyed and he thanked us. He said that even though he wasn't ready to change religions that since we had been coming his kids had started to say a blessing on the food. They had been praying together as a family and reading in the scriptures. They are the most HUMBLE people! He started to cry and he said he knew that everything he had he owed to God. He thanked us for reminding him of that. Then he said that he went to church that Christmas sunday. (Catholic church I believe.) He had been praying for his brother his whole life. I guess his brother doesn't really come around to any family parties and is pretty lost in life. He said that Sunday he showed up to church and that he was giving them all hugs and telling them he loved them. He said he knew it was a blessing from God and that his prayers had been answered. At this point... him, his wife, and I were all crying. I LOVE SEEING THE CHANGES that come into peoples' lives because of the Gospel. It makes me so grateful for my own family and that I was born into this Gospel. I am SO blessed to be His missionary right now. Also, la familia rodriguez (irene y omar) also fed us a huge delicious dinner with street tacos!! MY favorites :) It was truly a slice of heaven. This week another miracle happened. We went to the familia montantes. There are two kids there named Juan and Jasmine. they aren't her kids but they are staying with her because their mom is in prison. They are her niece and nephew. That day their mom was supposed to be getting out of prison and it was going to be our last opportunity to teach them. Jasmine was baptized with Hermana McDonald before I got here. But Juan never was and doesn't really want anything to do with it. He comes to church but just sits out in the hall and things like that. Well... for the first time we got him to sit in on the lesson :) We did a lesson on faith. We compared them to the 2000 stripling warriors. Then we did the most awesome thing!!! You put a tea bag on their hand and then you light it on fire. It's like the things from tangled... it lifts off their hand before it can burn them. It's so awesome! We did it to Juan and he was super nervous but it worked! :) It wasn't til after that I told him that was my first time doing it personally. Ha! I think it will stick in his head :) Also... even though his mom got out I guess she is staying at some place where they are helping her to get a job and things like that so I am so excited to have more time to work with him! Alma has been doing so awesome. She has been going out to lessons with us and we even took her to teach her neighbor! I think I may have told y'all about that. I love watching recents converts grow in the Gospel. Maria Sanchez showed up to church this week!!! We were so excited :) The Chequers didnt come and that made us super sad. But we will see if we can get them to keep progressing. The members have started to help and that makes a huge difference. I just want to say how much I love my mission. Even though it is one of the hardest things I have ever done I realized how much God is helping me to become the person I need to be. On Sunday I had a small break down and I was talking to Hermana Moore about how I wanted to be the perfect missionary. Baptize A lot. Speak the language perfect. Have the perfect companion and have all of them love me. If I try to measure up to all of those things... I am always going to fail if that is what I see as success. I realized something very profound this last Sunday. Perfection to God is doing our best with our imperfections :) It's all a beautiful mess. This morning I was reading my journal from the first few days on the mission. I talk about how I can't understand anyone and all the craziness... I have grown and learned SO MUCH!! God is making me who I am supposed to be not only for the mission but for the rest of my life. For the mom I am supposed to be one day. Give Him what is mediocure and He will give you a masterpiece. This last week we had interviews. I am always so excited for the meetings we have because everytime when our mission president, President Durrant talks I walk away feeling like we can take on the world. He is such a good man. Anyhow... this week he said something that reminded me of you a ton. He walked in the room and asked if he could get some applause. We all started laughing and clapping. then he stood there for a sec and said, "man... I love clapping. I used to play in front of 22,000 people. I'd make a shot. Everyone would go wild. (He made cheering faces etc.) then I'd dribble down the court the other direction and hit the ball off of my shoe and it would roll out of bounds. (then he started making a face and boo-ing.) He then went on to explain how hat stuff doesn't really matter. Even though he was an NBA basketball player... he said one minute there they loved me. the next, they were boo-ing me. What we're doing here. This is real. We are changing eternity.
Truly.. what we are doing here ... we are changing eternity! See people as they can become. Not as they are :) I love you all! I hope you are doing so well :) This is all going way too fast. Enjoy the ride!
Love ya!! - Hermana Hadlock
p.s. this cow tongue :) my compa ate it. I did not. Haha... gross!! :)