Thursday, December 31, 2015

Moving Forward

So it is true. This week I have been pondering a lot on change. Tuesday I had my first leadership council and well lets just say that the mission Piura, Peru has a lot of work to do. But I'm not discouraged. Rather my desire to change amplified and Hna. Orellana and I are that much more motivated to work harder. I also had my first Branch Council here in the branch Las Begonias. I loved it. This branch is so close to moving to ward level. As we talked about the new goals for this year, one of the things that I loved that they did is they talked to a solution. Sometimes we find ourselves discussing and discussing endlessly to find that we have not come to any  conclusion. I have also started thinking and setting some of my personal goals for the new year. 

One of the things that I found that helped in each one of the councils we had to set goals, in the council of missionary leaders, the branch council and my personal council is that we all started using the words of the prophets as a guide. As we sought for guidance using Preach my Gospel, the red manual, the scriptures and the General Conference talks we were better able to find what things we wanted to improve on. I loved the talk by Sister Stephens as she talked about keeping the commandments by following the words of the living prophets. I have reflected this week often on when she said:

¨Recently, living prophets have counseled us to “remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy,” and to live the law of the fast. Obedience to this prophetic counsel provides a way for us to be obedient to God’s commandment to love Him and our neighbor as we increase our faith in Jesus Christ and extend our hand to love and care for others.¨´

This year is a chance to change to move forward using the beautiful gift of the Atonement that came from the babe whose birth we recently celebrated. This is the time to make a change. 

So as I am working with myself and my companion on changing we are also trying to think of ways to help our investigators have the desire and motivation to change. I would love to hear ideas from you guys on how you do with your goals and what things help you to accomplish them. Thank you for your love and support. I truly can  feel it all the way down here in Paita. I hope all of you guys had a wonderful Christmas and that you have a happy new year!!!
Hna Tanuvasa

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Here comes the sun!


     So short email this week but I love my new area! Paita is super, super different from the city but it is beautiful and the best past, super breezy. I actually sometimes forget that Im serving a mission in the city of eternal heat. Hahaha but sadly our Christmas has no touch of white, or cold for that matter. Summer has hit full blast, and it's fully noticeable from my tragic missionary tan lines.
     In preparation for Christmas, I have to say it has been beautiful. Monday night we went knocking doors after P-day and we decided to start in Manzana A. We knocked on a few doors and then found this adorable family, Esmeralda, Joel and Joeli Yerena Cruz. They had a huge tv so we asked if we could show the video Ha Nacido Un Salvador, or A Savior is Born. We played it and then asked what they liked. All of them were in awe and ended up relating to us the pains that they have been through and what Christ has meant to them.
    This Sunday the branch asked us to teach the Valiant 9 class for primary and this is what came from the Spirit. In Helaman 14 we find Samuel the Lamanite preaching unto the people to watch and wait five years for the sign of the birth of Christ. To look for the light that would come, with the new star and the day and night and a day with no night. As of Sunday, we only five days until we celebrate the coming of the light that has entered into every one of our lives. So I challenge you, to with me, watch and see the light of Christ that has entered into your life, like that of the Yerena Cruz family. A Savior has been born, and because of that we have a new hope, a new life, a new start. It is something to rejoice over!! 
     I love all of you. Each one of you has brought in a light to my life. And I know that you have been able to do that because you yourself carry the light of Christ. I hope you all have a FANTASTIC CHRISTMAS!! Why?
because HE WAS BORN FOR US. 
Merry Christmas
Love, Hermana Tanuvasa

A Christmas Devotional in Paita, Kayla shared her musical talents

Monday, December 14, 2015

Ha Nacido un Salvador- A Savior is born


So I guess Ill start off with... CONGRATULATING KANOAH!!!! WHOOO!! You guys are going to rock it in Sacramento (: That's fun too that Tai and them are all coming down.  Congratulations Scott and Ginger Knecht !! They will be awesome Missionaries. I still haven't gotten my packages. Yes, the postal service is still on strike. But I have faith that they will get here. haha

So yes I did get transferred. I am now in...... PAITA!!!! WHOOO!!! I'm literally on the beach front 😍 My companion is Hna. Orellana and here in Paita I will be an Sister Leader.   
I cried though thinking of leaving Hna. Spainhower and everyone I love in MiraFlores right before Christmas. But this week was amazing. So Friday we had our Christmas Day in the mission home. We saw all the videos that President is putting up on Facebook if you guys haven't seen them go check them out!! They are super cool and hey I am in one of them! We also watched this amazing movie called Its A Wonderful Life and its a little bit old but wow such an impactful movie. Saturday we had La Noche Blanca and in total in our stake we had 18 baptisms! It was beautiful and Jesus and Jorge were there and they said both felt a wonderful spirit. 
This week I thought a lot of my Savior Jesus Christ. Let me tell you that I have a firm testimony that He lives. I know it because I have felt t. He was born over 2 millennium ago and because a perfect, precious child was born, we are who we are. We have a hope that we will rise again. We can feel joy and happiness in the saddest moments and we can receive strength in our weak moments. Because He was born, the world lies at our feet and we have the promise of having a member of the very Godhead with us. 
This week yes I have missed home, but as I pondered on my Savior, I know that all the bad that could possibly exist in this world, means absolutely nothing. He was born and because He was born, I live joyfully.

I cant wait to talk to you guys. I cant believe how fast it has come. I miss you guys so much and I cant wait to tell you everything about here and hear all about that has happened over there. I hope you guys are still remembering our Savior this Christmas season and that all is going well. Take care lots. LOVE YOU GUYS!!!!
Cuidense bastante,
Hermana Tanuvasa

Na Spainhower

Hna Orellana

Kayla saying goodbye to some people that she loves in Miraflores

Monday, December 7, 2015

God fulfills His promises- Dec 6, 2015


Ok first off we have less than three weeks before we talk for Christmas!! Whoohoo!!!!  So foootball sounds crazy but GO KANOAH!!! hahah ya doesnt quite sound like a normal christmas for you guys but hey the winds are a  changing and i feel like everything in life is getting more rushed now.... 

So i still havent gotten my packages because supposedly the Serpost here is on strike sooooo... beasicallly me and Hna. Spainhower are praying that the Lord will calm their hearts so they will receive our packages ahhahah

Kai is literally the best and I miss him all the time. Our ward mission leaders   grandson is the exact same age and he was born May  14, which is crazy!! I/ve seen a lot here that when I or my investigators learn a lesson, you guys tend to learn the same lessons. Just goes to show that the Lord will teach and help you to grow in whatever circumstances you are in. 

So yesterdday I fasted, and my fast was to develop more self control. More self control in my thoughts, words and deeds. For my thoughts I am trying to talk more about the scriptures with my companion and ponder on the things of eternity. I also take time during the sacrament to track and fill how I am doing. I think in this way we can fill our minds more with Christ. You can do this likewise with problems or stresses. Ill talk about my week to show an example.

So this week has been bad and good. We started off on a good foot, but then Hna. Spainhower got sick and once again we were forced to stop what we were doing. Since about three weeks ago when I first got sick. and then when Rosanna died and then this week. I knew that no one carried "the blame' yet I still felt sad wishing I could be doing more.  I kept listening to the Spirit however and telling myself that if I was working in the way the Lord wanted me to, I would be blessed, but to be honest half of my heart was still down, having a hard time believing it. But I continued studying and praying and working to the full capacity that we could in these moments. And Sunday, everything changed. I was studying in Mosiah 4, where King Limhi is actually admonishing his people for their iniquity and that because of their inquity they had been brought into bondage. The fruits of their unrighteousness, was suffering.... as God has promised. I felt a prompting to look towards the fruits of our work.  On Sunday, Jesus came to church and was laughing and talking with so many members of the JAS. Jorge, our investigator was talking with our ward mission leader and the young men's president about some questions he had from testimony meeting and the lesson. Joel, a twenty year old boy we contacted on the street yesterday actually came to church, without any lesson and then asked if he could come to the Christmas Devotional that night. My companion later talked to our investigator on the phone about his daughter who was sick and why he couldn't come without any help from me. As I saw the fruits of our works,  with such wonderful people starting to change their lives, and us having the privilege to teach such prepared people, I knew that the Lords promise had been fulfilled.  "Inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments, ye shall propser in the land." The promise is clear and true. We can know that in any situation if we are staying true to the Lord and true to the covenants that we have made, He will bless us. Period! So when in the midst of trial, when we often think who could possibly help or what should I do, God should be our first thought. Often we think to trust in the arm of man but as Sister Marriot said from this past conferene, 

¨I have struggled to banish the mortal desire to have things my way, eventually realizing that my way is oh so lacking, limited, and inferior to the way of Jesus Christ. “His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come.”
I testify with her that when we trust in Him and reflect on Him in every moment, he gives us the peace and solace that we lack. He knows our hearts and will bless us according to that which is expedient unto Him

Elder Godoy was awesome!!! He is such a cool guy and it was so fun to talk to him and his wife. The conference we had with him was awesome as well and I gained so may insights for myself and for my investigators. His conversion story is really, really cool and if you can find it somewhere I think you would love it. 

Our area is so awesome. Right now we have about 8 investigators progressing and others that we are working with. We only have two recent converts and one of them is less active. I understand pretty much everything now in Spanish. I speak and can understand with almost little problems. Every once in a while Ill trip over some new words but otherwise the gift of tongues is so real. I dont rememeber learning words and yet I understand and use them with no problem. I know that if you truly do want to develop a gift of God, if you pray with faith the Lord will bless you. Me and Spainhower do talk english although in the streets we try to just do spanish. I can't wait for Christmas either to tell you so much more(: 

I hope you all are enjoying the Christmas season. God truly lives and loves us and will bless us if we do what he asks. Christ is my Savior and I put my trust in Him. 
I love you all and miss you soo much!!!
Cuidense y muchos abrazos y besitos!!
Hermana Tanuvasa

P-day lunch with the 4 girls

Christmas Caroling with Kaylas mission district

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Because of HIM

Andres drew this picture of Kayla

So this has been yet another crazy week. First of all, I love my companion. Were it not for Hna. Spainhower, I couldn't have been able to make it through this week. She means the world to me and I will cry when we are split up. Luckily we live close so after the mission we will be together often. Also, there are some amazing members here in Peru, and some I don't even know, but they help us with the work and our investigators can feel their love. As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ, please never underestimate your importance and the good that you can do. Wednesday, we were in the middle of a lesson and something kept telling me to leave, I didn't know what it was, as the lesson was going great, but we cut it short and walked outside and Jesus, our recent convert called to tell us that his sister, Rosanna had just passed away. She was 45 and had ovarian cancer, and three children, two of which are our investigators, Michael, 22, Roxanna, 19, and Andrea, who only is 8 years old. 
Wow, when that news hit, we just cried, and cried and cried. I sat there in tears because I knew that I had absolutely no idea what to do for these people. We went that night to Jesus and he cried as he told us how much he missed here. Its been a while since Ive had my heart ripped out so hard. The next day we visited the kids and Friday morning we attended the funeral service. These nights I cried on my knees begging the Lord for some kind of answer or help. How precious this family is to us, and how much they are suffering. I can honestly saw that they are the first family that I really love and feel like I am part of their family, and to watch them suffer was something all together hard to bear. But prayer has kept me stable and the family moving forward. We are doing all that we can, staying by their sides, helping clean and prepare food and really just trying to bring in some of the light that we carry. And guess what? The Lord has immensely blessed us. 
So in our zone we are working to have a Noche Blanca  on the 12 of December which is basically that every companionship is working to have at least two baptisms and each ward is working for one family baptism. We had thought about moving Jesus´s baptism to the 12, but we felt strongly to make it as quickly as we possibly could. Now in this time of suffering, Jesus feels the comfort and is sharing his knowledge about the plan of salvation with his family. I know this is because of his faith and the gift of the Spirit that he has. 
The Lord has also blessed me with a companion that loves to laugh and that can easily make any person laugh, no matter what age or level of understanding of her Spanish. Just Saturday night, we sat with Michael, Roxanna, Jesus, and Andres (Jesus´s brother) and just laughed about the silliest things. Mom, Dad, Keirra and boys, I miss you guys so immensely because that's what we used to do. But thankfully because we had that joy in our family, we were able to share a little bit of it with the Perez family. 
This week was one of such intense sadness and yet one of such bright joy. I love the opportunity that God has given me to be here and be apart of this. But I testify that the only reason I was able to feel joy in a time of such sadness was because of the sure knowledge that I have that my Savior, Jesus Christ lives. That he resurrected on the third day and that because of Him, we too will live again. What a beauty it was to testify of that to this family. I know it is true with all my heart. What a blessing to see that miracles he creates in this time of Christmas. 
I love you all and I know that I will see you all again, not only after the mission, but after this life and I give thanks to my God for sending His only begotten to be born so many years ago for us. I encourage you to take a look at the video "A Savior is Born". He was born for you and me so go find out why. He is the true source of all happiness. I know He lives!!!!
Love and miss you all and I hope all is well at home (=
Hermana Tanuvasa

Andres and Jesus, Jesus was baptized recently

Hna Garcia from the CCM

Thanksgiving in Peru