September 21, 2010

Sept. 20, 2010

My Dear Familia,

Bienvenidos from the beautiful area of Gazcue! So, it´s been one crazy week, full of adventures, challenges, and of course the work of the Lord! Not going to lie though, it has been hard. Lots of adjustments and new things...and of course that bit about speaking spanish all the time. But all is well in Zion. My new comp is Hna Mejia who´s from right here in Santo Domingo. She is very patient with me and I feel very blessed to have her as a trainer. She´s been out for about 6 months and knows the area fairly well. We live in an apartment just a block away from the stake center and mission office. The ward here is awesome and the members are so welcoming. Although the sisters here before me left big shoes to fill, eveyone loved them and is sad when they find out I was sent as the replacement. Haha. The weather Really hot. And humid. I have to drink ten times more water than I´m used to. I´m sweating my body weight away, literally. Pretty sure I´ve lost weight in just the last week since all my clothes are looser. So hey, fringe benefit I guess!

Let´s see what else...oh for the first 3 days I was here our apartment did not have electricity, or luz as they call it here. Good thing I brought flashlights! It was interesting to say the least... Honestly I kind of feel like I´m at girls camp. I did my first load of laundry today which was a cross between using some type of washing machine thingy, a sink to rinse, and a line to hang dry. Definitely missing the washing machines of the MTC. Ummm oh the bugs here really like me. So much that I have approximately 27 mosquito bites on my legs currently, all below the knee thanks to my skirts. Lots of repellent and anti itch cream is in the works. Today we also go to to the store for the first time so now I actually have food to eat. We also went to payless since my comp needed new shoes...who knew they had that here?

Anyways all that´s really the lame stuff. The amazing stuff is the work! The people here are so willing to talk about God and I love it. We always have a pool of investigators and continually find more. But it´s a little difficult for me since I don´t speak spanish so well. Lots of smiling and nodding my head is going on lol. I can speak ok when it comes down to it, but I get intimidated and just lose my head alot. I feel like I´m always repeating the same stuff, but I guess my testimony doesn´t change a whole lot. I also had the opportunity to share a lesson with a member family in English since that´s all the father speaks. It made me realize why the Lord sent me here...because I needed to be humbled by learning a knew language. I will never look at non native english speakers the same way again. Each day is trial of my faith as I try to adjust and follow the promptings of the Spirit. There are moments of discouragement, but also moments of peace and joy. Yesterday Hna Mejia and I taught a first lesson to two brothers Alejandro and Istalen. It was messy for my parts, but we could all feel the Spirit strongly and I found myself just relishing the privilege to be a part of it. We have three progressing investigators right now. Grisel has been taking the lessons for while but is struggling to give up smoking. Please keep her in your prayers. Grace is another one who has three children and who´s mother is a member, but she is also struggling with the word of wisdom. There are many obstacles that face each of us, but as I work with these choice spirits, I feel the support of the Lord with both them and me.

I am so grateful for this gospel and the many ways it has blessed my life. I know that it is true. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that He is the only way. Our Heavenly Father is mindful of us always, and He answers prayers. I can´t tell you how many of my silent prayers have been answered just in this first week. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all things shall be added unto you!

Hermana Bradley

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