Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Quito Double Trouble

This week was pretty interesting! It started off super lousy actually. Monday and Tuesday every single on of our appointments fell through and we just contacted (for some of you in mission in the states - or worse, Europe, I know I'm probably whining way too much), without hardly any success. Then, guess what! Our district leader shows up Wednesday morning to surprise us telling us my companion has a surprise medical appointment in Quito that day (he has to go to Quito for regular check-ups on a foot problem - nothing serious, he can work  just fine, he just has to get these check-ups every once in a while...) so we lost the entire day travelling in the bus. It's a two hour drive in the bus from Otavalo winding down the Andes into Quito and from the terminal in Quito it's another hour in the super-confusing city bus system to get to the hospital. Well, at least the medical appointment turned out well.

And the next day, we had to go once again to Quito to renew my visa! We were sitting there waiting for the visas for something like two hours, and I'd left my scriptures somewhere else so I couldn't even do that (only in the mission would you want to read scriptures to pass the time). So we lost that day as well.

But you know what I've been thinking this week about the talk President Eyring gave in the Priesthood Session this conference. He explained that as holders of the priesthood, if we do our little part the Lord will make up for the rest of it. I suppose I get overly worried about just doing my little part a lot of the time, but this week I could see that the Lord could really bless us despite the time lost.

First, we came back home both nights to actually have appointments. One of them was with Jaime, a less-active reference that the wife of the previous bishop gave us. It was the first lesson we had with him, and he shows real desires to progress! He's had a hard time with his marriage but the Lord really blessed us there because he has lots of desires and great members to help him on the way back to activity.

The next night we came back and managed to find Victor, a less-active the elders had already been working with for a long time. He's a good guy but had never shown progress - said he'd go to church but never did, which is some kind of contagious condition here in Ecuador. He has a lot of opposition from his less-active family as well. But the Lord worked a miracle and he told us he truly wanted to come this week! We went by to pick him up Sunday morning and it was true - there he was, ready to go, and off to church he went! I could see it was hard for him - he was fairly nervous, but the members did a great job of helping him feel at home and he had a great experience.

Finally, it looks like we have a real miracle of a referral to contact. After ward council one of the sister missionaries from the other ward (there are two wards that meet in our building and our ward starts first) called us over. She explained there was a family that had recently moved into the ward that, according to the boundaries, belongs to us but had mistakenly come to church in the other ward. The wife isn't a member and the husband is less-active but just the fact they came to church and stayed all three hours is a huge sign that they could have potential! We'll be contacting them this week and we'll see how it goes!

It's true, though, the Lord does it all if we do our part. I was reading Alma 18-19 this morning, the famous story of Ammon and how he converts an entire kingdom. I was thinking about how it must have been from his perspective. He started with "I'll serve the king let's see how that goes." He was pretty excited about an opportunity to serve. I'll bet he was thinking "awesome, maybe if I help defend the flocks the servants might listen to me and I might get a few converts there, cool." But little did he know the king would soon get involved and not only the king, but the queen, and then the entire people. Who could have known that they would repent so quickly and miraculously and that they'd all flop to the ground and then it just happens that this other lady was already there who'd already been converted just by chance from a vision her dad had seen a while ago? Pretty remarkable. Ammon just did his small part and the Lord really took care of the rest.

Well that's it for this week. Hope you guys are all doing well!
A cool cathedral that I'm sure has some kind of historical significance. We went to Cotacachi, another village about 15 minutes from Otavalo, to check out some leather products for p-day.

 At about center-right if you squint really hard you can see the Cotopaxi volcano spewing smoke. I took this picture as we went to Quito. They say it's going to explode within the next few months, but sadly we won't see anything very exciting out here in Otavalo - it's on the other side of Quito and too far away to do anything to us.

 In Quito I was super happy to find guaguas de pan. I've been waiting literally a year to eat these things again. It totally reminds me of my training, because I entered Ecuador and started eating these things a little less than a year ago...

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