Monday, June 10, 2013

My 8:55 Miracle

COLUMBIA, Md. — Yep, made it through my first week in Baltimore :) I can hardly believe I am actually out in the field now. Seems so weird, but I absolutely love it.

Before I give you the details about Maryland, let me first say Thank you, Dad! You are a lifesaver for calling the mission home and telling president we were coming on Monday. They had no idea! We would have been stuck at the airport if you didn’t call so thanks again.

My area is called Columbia, Maryland. Our area is pretty big because it covers the whole stake. I like it, but it is hard because we have a limited amount of miles and no bikes. All the other missionaries have bikes to ride but we don’t since we are visa waiters. My companion is also a visa waiter. Her name is Hermana Brown. She is waiting for her visa for the Argentina Salta mission. She has only been here six weeks, but she is my trainer. She is great and we get along really well.

What's for lunch? Beans and green beans!

Do you want to hear the craziest thing ever?!? Hermana Newman and Hermana Brown are the first Spanish Sister missionaries in the Maryland Baltimore Mission EVER! What an honor! The Lord expects a lot out of us, but I know that we can do it! It’s kind of hard because we are both really new, the only Spanish sisters and we are white washing (being in a new area without either companion having previously been there). Welcome to the mission field Hermana Newman :) It is great though!

Really love it, no complaints here. The East Coast is great! WAY different than the West Coast, but I am getting used to it. I am definitely not in Utah anymore though.

Rain in Maryland. Wet and hot!

There are a lot of things to tell you and my brain is trying to work a mile a minute. I am in the Columbia Maryland 3rd Spanish Branch. It is a wide area, but it is fun and I already love the Latino people. They are so kind and LOVE having sisters. They always have elders, so to have sisters in the area is their favorite thing ever.

We get dinner almost every night, which is nice, and it tastes amazing. Hispanic people sure know how to cook! I better get in all the Hispanic food before I head to Argentina, because I hear the food there is more Italian. 

Anyway, I am being well taken care of. A lot of the members think I am Mexican and are surprised when I tell them I am from Utah and am just learning Spanish. Hahah! I love the looks on their faces when I tell them I am English and Swedish. Good times!  

I can't think of what else to tell you besides an awesome story. So that is what I will end with, I suppose until next week.

Miracles do happen. I have seen them a lot in the MTC and out here in Maryland. We had one on the 8th. I like to call it my 8:55 Miracle. :) 

It was a hard day. We didn’t get out of the apartment until around 1:30 because of all of our studies which include: Personal, companion, Preach My Gospel, language study and then 12 week training. Once we were out and driving and walking around, we were not having a lot of luck. Everywhere we went, it seemed like no one was home or they weren’t interested. A few times we knocked on some less-active member's doors. We could hear them inside, but they didn’t come. They ignored us. We could tell they were by the door looking out at us and then didn’t open the door. That is hard! It is hard to share the gospel with people that don’t want to listen. My companion was getting a little down and you could tell it was taking a toll on her. But, of course me being me, I kept smiling and being optimistic. I would crack a few jokes here and there and let her know it was going to be all right.

We were able to talk with some English people and give some cards. It was a great day to talk with people, but nobody seemed interested. We eventually got to meet with a less-active and talk with her a bit, teach a lesson and make a return appointment. We still had 30 minutes left until it was time to head home. We were in the parking lot and my companion asked me what I thought we should do for the last 30ish minutes. I wasn’t sure so I said... lets go do some service! We walked around looking for people. It was 8:55 and we walked up to our car to get the stuff we needed in the apartment. We were talking a little bit and a car pulled up behind us. A woman got out of the car and was getting stuff out of her trunk. Without hesitation we were over there offering help.

She initially said no she was fine, but I told her I would be happy to help and we grabbed her cooler and some bags. We took it up to her apartment. She smiled and asked us to come inside to visit with her. I was amazed and so excited. We began talking, and it turns out she is a very religious person. 

Long story short, we were able to talk with her and set up a return appointment. The cool thing is she lives in our apartment complex. Her name is Ada, she is a nurse and loves life because God is in her life and helps her. It was a tender mercy to me that we got to meet her and teach her a little bit. The miracle was that as we were about to leave she told us she was from Puerto Rico and speaks Spanish. When she said that, I was so thrilled and had the chills. The thing is, Hermana Brown and I are only allowed to teach Spanish people. Yes, This was my miracle at 8:55. Ada is ready for the Gospel and the Lord’s timing is perfect! 

There are no coincidences, and I know that we were supposed to meet her. I learned a good lesson about trust and faith that night: If you trust in the Lord and have faith, he will bring miracles. Obedience brings blessings. Exact obedience brings miracles. I was able to witness a miracle 5 minutes before the day was over. How great this Gospel is! I love it! I love being a missionary!

My time is up, but I hope you all know I love you. Have a wonderful week!

Te Amo

-Hermana Newman :) 

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