The following definition is needed to be able to understand the following chapter of our story:
Baggy (adj.). (ba-ggiey) An extreme sense of homesickness, in which one is incapacitated by an overbearing feeling of hopeless and a missing of their past lives. Usually common among Latter Day Saint missionaries who are beginning and ending their service as Missionaries. Synonyms: Trunky, Homesick and bummed out. (see also, fiery dart of the adversary).
Being in a trio with a missionary who is close to finished and one who is just starting musters up a whole lot of baggy feelings.
We all know that Jesus told his disciples "No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back is fit for the kingdom of God." (Luke 9:62), his declaration was very clear, that all those who could not "leave their nets" were not made useful in the service of the Lord. Exhibit A: The Rich Young Ruler, Exhibit B: A Certain Companion that I had not too long ago. The Lord is clear: we are allowed to miss our homes and families...but in the moment that we become debilitated by such feelings, we've sunken our ship even before it's left the harbor.
And this, the "Old Ship Zion" cannot afford to sink.
Feelings of Bagginess usually come when the work is slow and our spirits are down. It's a time when we allow the Spiritual Cockroaches to embed themselves in our hearts a little bit and we permit ourselves to become disheartened and discouraged.
That, my friends, is a problem. And it's a dilemma that is all to common here in San Cristobal II, especially after sour-tasting weeks like the one that me and my Companions just passed through.
I'm not sure why, but almost nothing seemed to go our way this week.
It was overall...just hard.
It's too bad when that happens...
And it's not even like, "nothing went good at all this week! We're failures! Aaaahhh!" No. There were definitely miracles, I was able to see all of the blessings...but it was just a week where the ups seemed to out-measure the downs.
From the very beginning, on Tuesday things just started going downhill. All of our appointments fell through, people who usually would receive us started hiding behind their doorbells, there were few opportunities for finding new Investigators...and to top it all off, the cherry of this Ice Cream Sundae was the fact that it rained.
I can handle a little bit of water...but when the morning comes and all three of my pairs of shoes are soaked inside and out still...things get a little bit hard.
And what I learned was that the Lord knows that! He knows when we go through rough patches and when things are just hard, hopeless and baggy! He's been there too! And he doesn't want us to suffer like he did!
So, he gives us a spoonful of sugar to help the medicine go down.
On Friday we went on divisions with one of my good friends, Elder Kundie...Elder Linford and I stayed in San Cristobal (the wilderness of our afflictions :)) and we just had a great time, working as hard as we could and just conversing between friends. At the end of the day we roasted marshmallows and talked about the mission and college.
It was a nice break.
On Saturday, at the end of a fruitless week we started to see some signs of success.
A man, his name is Joey.... he’s from California came up to us as we were knocking on doors in the late afternoon. he told us that he was a member of the Church...although inactive...he was here visiting his wife's family and he asked us if we could come by and visit him another day...his wife insisted, saying "I want the word of God to be in our house again!"
I like that attitude!
So, the Lord blesses us.
Even though it wasn't the best week ever, and I would be lying if I said that it wasn't...he loves us and helps us nonetheless. Even though we got into a bible bash with the Jehovah’s Witnesses on Sunday Afternoon, he blessed us with 5 referrals from the Bishop on Sunday Night.
The Church is true my friends!