Pre-Thanksgiving in Mexico!

¡Hola!

Mañana es la dia de la accion de gracias, y yo estoy muy emocionado participar en las felicidades! (Por favor, perdoneme; no puedo hacer accentos con mis letras!)
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It’s exciting that Thanksgiving is tomorrow! We are having a special devotional here to celebrate. It’s really cute, actually, because the latinos here call it “una devocional Navidad,” a Christmas devotional, because they don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. 🙂 Yo tengo esperanza para teneremos pavo y papas para cena mañana! Y mi compañera hacio una pavo (le dice “Elder Pavo”) con papel para adornar nuestra aula. I’m hoping that we will have turkey and potatoes for dinner tomorrow, and my companion made a really cute little turkey named “Elder Pavo” to decorate our classroom. 🙂
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I just received my flight itinerary! I’m leaving the CCM on December 9th at 7 am; I fly from here to Phoenix, and from Phoenix to Tucson. They were really nice and left me an hour-ish layover, which means that I will get to call you guys around 10 that morning!
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This week has been amazing. I feel like I have learned and grown so much this week alone. There is so much that I could tell you, and I would love to tell you everything, but there really just isn’t time! I plan to tell you a few choice experiences every week. 🙂 Even then, it’s difficult to make these experiences come across the way I want them to through email. They are so special to me and words just don’t do them justice.
First of all, I want to share a little of my testimony of the power of prayer. It really is such a huge blessing to be able to pray to our Heavenly Father whenever we want. Think of it; we can’t just call up one of the members of the Quorum of the 12 or President Monson whenever we want. But as children of a Heavenly King, we have the privilege to commune with Him whenever we choose! We can talk to Him about anything – He is our father, and He loves us more than we could ever imagine. He wants to bless us and help us, and all we have to do to receive His blessings and help is ask! It’s so simple. And that’s the way it’s meant to be. 🙂 Prayer is such a huge tool for me because I can very literally ask for specific things I need help with to improve my missionary skills, strengthen my testimony, or become more like Christ. And it is amazing how He has expanded my capacity (in learning Spanish, for example) and has helped me change my heart gradually through the enabling power of the Atonement. You can ask for specific things in your life that are in alignment with His will and you will see miracles happen! I know this is true because I have seen it happen here, in my own life. 🙂
Hermana Young and I are becoming a really great team. Every lesson we teach becomes our best lesson! I love working with her; she is such an example to me of diligence and faith. We are really great friends! It’s a little sad, though; I feel like this week we have finally figured out how to REALLY teach as a team, and we’ll have to go our separate ways in less than two weeks! I really hope that I can make every companionship as great as this one, because we really have taught with the power of the spirit and it has been amazing. And I hope to be able to always improve so that we can become more like the sons of Mosiah! (Alma 17:2-3)
Last night Hermana Young and I taught THE most amazing lesson we have ever done because it was completely by the spirit. It was one of the most astounding experiences I’ve had here. During TRC (this is just where we usually just go and teach really fast lessons to volunteers), we taught two other elders in our zone that came in the week after us (we call them 4-weekers) about the importance of the Book of Mormon and how we can receive personal revelation through it. They had just taken a few minutes before to teach us a lesson about prayer. It became apparent as they were teaching us, and more so as we were teaching them, that one of the elders was really struggling. He really did not know much Spanish and relied on his companion to say everything. However, that wasn’t really the problem. The problem was his attitude. He was not even trying – trying to appear happy to be here, trying to participate in either lesson, trying to speak Spanish, or trying to improve.It also became apparent that he really did not have a testimony. (Heavenly Father really gave us the gift of discernment in this lesson.) It was heart-breaking! Hermana Young and I both realized this and kicked into high gear. We wanted to help him so badly – and this was a REAL problem. This wasn’t just someone profiling an investigator they had known. This guy needed real help. And so, we went completely by the spirit and bore our testimonies about the Book of Mormon and expounded scripture to them. We even read the scriptures we felt prompted to share in English so that he would understand. It was amazing because we were completely led by the spirit; all the things that came out of our mouths were perfect and flowed together; the spirit was there and I felt it testify through my words and the words of my companion. Neither of us had ever felt such a conviction during a lesson to help someone – we only had 20 minutes to do it. And it was AMAZING! The words were definitely sent to us, and the things that we had been working to study, understand, and memorize came to our minds without a thought. Oh I wish I could explain this better! There really is no other thing in the world that feels quite as amazing as when Heavenly Father uses me as an instrument in His hands to help His children. I really hope that those 20 minutes will help that Elder; I know they helped his companion, because he told us so. That is really neat too – the spirit applied the message we gave, which was centered on the needs of the other, to him as well. 🙂 We left them with the commitment to read a chapter of the Book of Mormon every day with a question in mind, and to start off with a prayer, because that’s how we can receive personal revelation.
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Hermana Young and I are composing an arrangement for “Savior, Redeemer of My Soul” in Spanish completely from scratch. She is an amazing pianist! I will be singing it. We are going to audition this Friday to perform  before a devotional sometime. 🙂
There is SO much more that I want to tell you, but I have to go. I love you all! Thank you for all the support you give me!
Con amor,
Hermana Sutherland 🙂
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