Friday, January 18, 2013

Hermana Baeza"A testimony never forgets where it came from" and Birthday Reminder :D

Just a reminder, Sister Baeza has a Birthday coming up! She will be 22 on February 5th. Feel free to send her a Birthday card and wish! Love you all :D Baeza Family

Hey family and friends!
So, I cannot remember the last time I've written an email this early in the morning so bare with me if my spelling is horrible or if what I write doesn't make any sense :) Thank you for the letters I got this week: Mikey (thanks for the family christmas card haha so cute!), Madz, and Brother Pilkington! Guess who I saw at the VC this week? The Belnap's! It was so fun seeing them and crazy to see how fast Olivia has grown! I feel like the last time I saw her she was just a tiny baby haha. Ahhh that makes me sad because that means Mckay and Gracie girl and all of my other little ones are growing up! Okay, remember how I told you about my new years resolution of no sweets? Haha can probably guess what happened with that one ;) BUT! I came to an agreement with my companion that I would only eat sweets 2 days of the week...that's a lot more realistic. I had to change it because for SOME reason we were getting cookies and all different types of sweets all week long and when my companion would try one she would talk about how good it was and offer me one haha! She was not helping me at all with my temptations. So yeah, now it's going to be twice a week...I'm cool with that. I'm almost back to my normal weight so life is good!! :)

I had such a wonderful week at the VC. There was one day during the week where it was absolutely dead. We decided to watch this movie (pretty sure it was from the 80s) called "On Our Way Home". It was about this family preparing for their baptismal service that day and the whole day they were thinking about their daughter/sister who had passed away. When they learned that they could see her again, that was what made them join the church. And, a friend was the one who set the example for them and got one of the daughters to be curious which soon got the rest of the family curious! Member missionary work really does work! At the end of the movie you see each family member get baptized and haha I totally LOST it! Okay, maybe not anything hardcore but I just started to cry! Whenever I see a real baptism or a "fake" baptism on a movie or mormon message, I always cry. Baptism is just so important! That is the key and the way to return back to God! I just always reflect on the day when I was baptized and how that was one of the most happiest days of my life. I remember it so vividly and feel like it was just yesterday. I also had this bishop come in, Bishop Johnston, who I gave a tour for when I was still with Sister Merciales during our...hmm maybe 1st or 2nd transfer together? He came in and was a complete mess. It was a two hour tour and he just cried to us. Like, a full grown man cried to us!! I remember everything from that tour and how intense it was. However, I also remember how strong the spirit was and how unified Sister Merciales and I were. He came in the other day and I quickly went up to him and said hi. I asked him how he was doing, how his family was doing, and followed up with him to see if he ever read his patriarchal blessing like I had invited him to do. He couldn't believe how much I remembered from when I first met him! It was just so neat to see him happier and to see him getting his life back in order. That's the beauty of serving in the visitors center - people come in because they are either hurt or they know they are missing something in their life but they just don't know what it is. What we get to do is help them, help them to feel and recognize the spirit so they leave better off then they were when they walked in. I love my calling! Another cool experience was when Elder Quinlin opened his MISSION CALL Friday night at the VC! He is one of the few missionaries in our mission who are set apart as missionaries for just a month because we had some go home for school and we needed more elders! So he opened his call and is going to the Jacksonville, Florida mission! The best part is is that his best friend in his ward is going to that exact same mission but leaves a month before him! Seeing Elder Quinlin open his call was so special. I remember getting my mission call in the mail (well, Abby getting it for me haha :) ) and opening it. I remember that as bizarre as it was that I was going back to California for my mission...I remember knowing that it truly was inspired of God and that I was suppose to go there. Saturday night we had a girl come to the VC who was waiting for her best friend to come out of the temple. She had introduced her friend to the church and she has only been a member for 2 years and she's going on a mission!! She's 19 and her parents have no idea that she is going and she doesn't know when or how to tell them. I was so proud of this girl because heck, I would of gone when I was 19 if the opportunity was given but she's the only member in her family! She has zero support from them but she knows the gospel is true which is why she wants to go out and serve the Lord to teach it to everyone. I don't know, this week has just been a walk down memory lane in a way where I've been able to look back on my own journey in finding the gospel and how peoples lives truly are changed when they put trust in the Lord and strive to do what's right in order to live with Him again.

Last night I had an amazing conversation on the phone with a father of an Elder that is serving in my mission. He's less active but I never assumed he was over the phone to prevent any awkwardness. I was calling him only for referrals but when I asked him who I could give a call to, he said that the only person that he could think of to give me as a referral was himself. I was shocked! I had seen his son earlier that day because I gave him a tour and he told me to not even try to teach his dad, that I should even bother with it. But, his dad came to ME and it was one of the most spiritual conversations I have ever had over the phone. Scriptures were just coming to my mind and the spirit was truly working through me. My tongue was loose and the Lord was helping me know what words to say to this father. I told him that the best gift God has given me on my mission was bringing my parents and my little brother back to the church and how that can be the best gift that your son could receive while on his mission. He said that I could call him back once a week and I committed him to start reading the Book of Mormon again and to say his prayers more formally, always ending "in the name of Jesus Christ, amen." When I got off the phone I was just in shock. The other sisters were complimenting me and what not but it wasn't me who did that, it was the spirit...and I want to always teach by the spirit and last night taught that sometimes...I do get routine and casual in my teaching. I want that to change. Correction, it's going to change!

I love my mission so much. I know that God is our Heavenly Father. I know that He loves us so much that He's given us families and that He has called a prophet in our days to lead and direct His church in order to help us gain eternal life and salvation. I know that the Book of Mormon IS the word of God. I know that it is for our days and that it can help me draw nearer to God. I know, with all of my heart, that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. I know that he went to God, at 14 years old, and asked Him to know which true was true. He really did see God the Father and Jesus Christ. Like I've said before, I know that God can do anything and because of that, I know that he called a young, 14 year old boy to be His prophet. I know that Thomas S. Monson is our modern day prophet today. I know that he loves us so much and wants to help us prepare to meet God again. I know that missionary work is so important and is the way to help our brothers and sister receive the restored gospel. Families truly can be together forever, and I know that to be true because of the feelings I felt when my family and I were sealed in the temple. I will see them again, and that's because God loves me enough to not just have them here during my mortal life, but to also have them with me in the eternities. I know that this church is true. I know that it is the only true church on the earth today. Bits and pieces of the truth can be found in many different churches but only in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can we ever find the fulness of the Gospel. This is Christ's church. If he established His church when He was here, why do we have so many churches in the world today? That's why God sent us a prophet, so that His church could be restored back on the earth for us. I love you all so much! I invite you to continue to share your testimony to those you know in order to help them know and learn about the gospel of Jesus Christ. I love my mission!

Hermana Baeza
1591 E Temple Way
Los Angeles, Ca 90024

1. New years eve!
2. cleaning while standing on the table! her house is freezing!! :(
3. love my sister set!!

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