Monday, September 1, 2014

´´Una familia Dios nos dio´´

Dearest Family,

This past week was the best week ever here in Chincha!!! I felt so much joy this weekend, the Molina Family was baptized, and the Flores family was completed with Ivan's baptism! We had 6 baptisms on Saturday!! It was an incredible experience, and one I will never forget. I baptized 3 & Elder Rolando 3, we had fun in the water. :) The Flores family was all inactive, and we rescued them by teaching all the lessons, bringing them to church and to interviews with the Bishop, and baptizing Ivan, the father, who was the only one missing to the family. María, the wife, I have never seen her so truly happy before. She says their joy will be even greater one year from now when they go to the temple to be sealed for this life and all eternity, and when their 2 boys grow up in the gospel to be misionaries as well. I love these people we are teaching so much . They are all so incredibly filled with Charity, Christ's pure love, and willing to submit themselves to all of the Father's will. The Molina family, 5 of the 6 (because the littlest and cutest daughter is only 5 years old) were all baptized and are looking forward to a temple marriage as well, and to raise their children in this gospel for life. Miluska, the mother, shared in her testimony after her baptism that she would personally be in charge of that and make sure it happens. Hernan, the father asked the Bishop shortly after the baptismal service ended, do we pay tithing today or tomorrow? I cannot comprehend the joy and willingness these people have to live the gospel.
Might I add that our first encounter with the Molina Family was July 26, just one month before. I cannot believe how rapidly and truly their lives have changed. Despite their financial lack, we were all so surprised to greet them at the baptismal service as they came with very nice Sunday clothing, shirts, ties, skirts, and pants, that was brand-new; they had bought for this special ocasion, and new life they had decided to live. Even more joy I felt as we found the rest of Hernán's family, who has 9 other siblings and wonderful parents, and we taught them all yesterday and he bore powerful testimony to his sister and brother in law. Yesterday, we went to visit the Flores family again, and despite the poor example and decisions of Ivan's cousins as they were smoking and drinking in his house, inviting him and teasing him, he did not give in; they had been waiting our arrival to teach them even more the gospel of Jesus Christ. They have so much love in their family it has impacted my heart for life. I know that God has prepared these special souls to covenant with Him, and they were willing and ready. For some reason this incredible blessing of undescribable joy has come to me, as I have merely served as a tool in the Lord's hands to convey His Doctrine with power, authority, and the Holy Ghost, and I think I have been changed almost as much as they have during this time. The gospel is beautiful, and even more beautiful with families.
I am so grateful for President Douglas' very high standards for us missionaries to focus only on finding families, to baptize, rescue, and retain them through the ward council under direction of the bishop. I will not lie at all, that it is not easy to have such high standards, but I testify that it is worth it. I know that commandments and God's will is to protect and bless us - and that if we repent, have more faith in His Son Jesus Christ, and completely abandon our sins and take out our own will of our natural man, we will be made into so much more, what God wants for us, and it will be so much greater of a blessing. 

I love you all family. I can't remember a whole lot because we are so much set into the work here and how to help these families in Chincha, but my prayers and hope is that the Lord is watching over you, and I am completely certain that you are in His hands, and that His Spirit is working with each one of you. Work with Him, feel and follow His Spirit. Repent, understand how to put more faith in Jesus Christ, and act with boldness and love. I love you so very much and hope you always remember how His love feels.

Have the best day ever! We'll see you later!!!

Elder Clarke

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