August 31, 2015
When I first arrived to Washington, I heard my mission president say: "Nothing is free in this world....except blackberries." I had pondered on this phrase many times, knowing that President Bonham is a very wise, inspired man, wondering what he meant by that. And in this last week, I've finally figured it out!! You see, here in Washington, blackberries flourish by the side of every street. They grow big and wild and as the summer progresses, they start to turn from red to black- and they are prime for picking! And eating- and they are completely free! I saw a tiny little box of them at Walmart for like $6 and I just laughed. Ha. I saw a lady walking down this road with a big basket in her hands, wondering what in the world she was doing. But people do it here all the time. So we stopped the car, and offered to help her and we got to fill 2 big bowls full of blackberries that she makes into jam. Thumbs up for unplanned service opportunities! #softeninghearts. We walked away with some very purple hands. Ha- good thing hand sanitizer took away most of the stain. And so, some mornings when we go for a run, we stop to catch our breath and pick some berries to add to our breakfast that morning! Just a little quirk of Washington life! (:
Second, I simply must tell you about Hermana Lopez!! She got baptized a few months ago, and since that time, has gradually lost her sight after a surgery gone wrong. She is now completely blind and is the most amazing example to me! She is still so happy and has a very positive attitude on life. For the past six weeks, she's been unable to drive herself to church and her family has been unwilling to take her. She always gets ready to go to churchmorning, and then no one is willing to take her. She has been very patient and loving with her family, but she has been so sad without the peace that church attendance brings. So this week, we talked to her visiting teachers and one of them went to pick her up from church. When I saw her walk into the church building, her face glowing, o mi corazon! We got to help take her by the hand and guide her around the building to all the classes. To put the piece of bread and cup of water into her hands and see her partake of the sacrament. She helps me remember that being happy is truly a choice. It also reminds me of a quote from last conference:
"The more we ponder the significance of the sacrament, the more sacred and meaningful it becomes to us. This was what a 96-year-old father expressed when his son asked, “Dad, why do you go to church? You can’t see, you can’t hear, it’s hard for you to get around. Why do you go to church?” The father replied, “It’s the sacrament. I go to partake of the sacrament.”
I know that the peace of this Gospel can help us overcome all the trials and sadness that this world can throw at us! May we CHOOSE to be happy and "make our own sunshine" like we do here in the Washington Everett Mission!
Pic: Hno Ramirez passing the sacrament for the first time!!
|Sister Laing! Our day in Everett!|
|She is literally Meredith from Brave!! Haha!|
She looks just like her!
|The rain is back folks so we have to|
revert to "making our own sunshine"
as Sister Bonham says! (AKA vitamin D)