Sunday, June 14, 2015

another incredible week (from April 27)

Hello sweet family and friends and fellow missionaries!
This week was just incredible. I know I say that every week, but for reals this one was SO good. Also, this email will be loooong, so if you don't read it all, I understand.

First, I thought I'd start by letting y'all know that I have walked into so many spider webs this past week. So many.

 We had zone meeting/interviews with President, district meeting, and a meeting for trainers/trainees. I learned so, so much about the importance of setting expectations, explaining baptism, and just how the church works. The training meeting on Thursday consisted of the 5 new missionaries and their companions, the assistants, the lead sister training leaders, and the Slaughters. It was so awesome because it was such a small group and you could ask questions whenever. President Slaughter says that we're here to build up the church, and to do that, we need to know the church. So we took some time to go over the church organization, who presides at what, the titles, offices of the priesthood, etc.

We also talked about being consecrated missionaries. I think a lot of it means going above and doing more than following rules, more than being faithful, but truly loving the Lord and allowing ourselves to be changed forever. In Elder Holland's talk "The First Great Commandment", he says "the crowning characteristic of love is always loyalty." If we truly love the Lord and rely on Him, our automatic response will to be loyal and obedient and live that higher law. That love comes from knowing who we are, and what has been done on our behalf. Once we can begin to grasp that immense love Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have for us, we can begin to love them in the same way and act in a way that shows that. Study Matthew 5 and 3 Nephi 12.
I could go on and on about the different things I've learned, but I'll tell y'all in person one day when I can explain it all better!
This week we had some incredible lessons with Palma and Karen. Palma is still the sweetest, frailest thing, but she wants to be baptized! We're working on her coming to church, but she is so awesome. With Karen we talked about the Bible and Book of Mormon working together, and it was one of the most powerful lessons of my entire mission. The Book of Mormon is true brothers and sisters. Karen also shared with us her point of view of when Sister Reece and I first met her. She said that she had a lot on her plate and that she was doing stuff in her house and said a prayer out loud to be shown what to do next and for help. She said that 15 minutes later, Sister Reece and I knocked on her door, and that's why she immediately let us in. I love her so much, and her faith is incredible. What a blessing to work with such amazing people.
The greatest thing that happened this week was that on Tuesday night we got a phone call from Brother Betancourt telling us that he got his temple recommend and was going to the temple on Saturday, and he wanted us there. So got permission, and on Saturday afternoon we, some other ward members, and one of the missionaries that taught Brother Betancourt, went to the temple for him to receive his endowment. It also happened to be the year mark of when I first went to the temple. There is no other place a missionary or member wants a recent convert to be. It was one of the most incredible experiences I have had at the temple and on my mission. Brother Betancourt was so ready and so happy, and he loved it. The covenants we make are so perfect and loving. Being in the celestial room with him and my ward members was unforgettable. I don't know how I got so blessed to be here with these people, but I am so grateful.
This truly is the work of our Savior and it is our calling to fulfill. I love every part of it.
I love y'all so much and hope y'all have a blessed week.
Sister Snyder

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