Friday, December 12, 2014

No, it wasn't fog--a roller coaster week!

Hola beautiful people!  Yes, I mean you!

Sometimes life can be the hardest, most awful monster of a thing, and at the same time contain life’s coolest moments.

I went on exchanges to a little town an hour south called Huasco.  The town is on the coast.  The air was kind of foggy, so I asked my temporary companion if it is foggy often.  It turns out it wasn’t fog, but smog from the giant factories on the other side of the hill.  Then I noticed that everything was covered by a thick layer of black dust, and it was harder to breath than normal.

The day was pretty awful. Hot, no water in the apartment, and a constant headache.  I was starting to feel like giving up, but we decided to keep going a little more.  We knocked on a house to compliment their Christmas tree, and  the lady said there was something special about us and wanted to talk to us more. Definitely a tender mercy for pushing ourselves a little more.

So I went from that experience thinking--yeah! I can do anything, to going back to my sector and having the hardest three days of my life.  Our gas ran out in our apartment (cold shower), then our water was cut (no shower), and then ALL of our 6 appointments fell through.  Now I was REALLY going to give up.  I told God that if he didn’t help me I was just going to die right there on the spot in the hot sun.

I passed a lady who was painting the outside of her house, and without thinking asked if she needed help.  She said yes.  So we changed our clothes and came back.  I started to paint and it was just what I needed--the heat actually felt good! The lady was touched by our service and said we could come back to teach. Double win.

One last thing.  The power of baptism is oddly more real than I ever imagined.  I took our English class on a tour through the church to name objects in English, and eventually we got to the baptismal font.  When the class was standing there, they said they could feel something.  I explained (in my broken Spanish) about baptism.  Two of the girls later came to us and said they didn’t know why, but they wanted to be baptized.  We also get the same reaction from people when we show them pictures of Jesus in the river Jordan; they feel something stir inside them.  Super weird, and SUPER cool.  Never knew the spirit would do that.

Thanks for your emails, and more importantly your love.  I love this time of year where I can think about the best gifts on my life.  I love the mission. I have never felt so pure and loved by God.  I know he loves you just as much.

Everything is awesome—even on hard days :)

Elder Phillips

Illegal homes outside of town


Nice family--recent converts--they give us yummy juice!

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