Sunday, February 1, 2009

Our First Sunday in our New Ward...

I've had so much going through my mind about our Sunday experience. As most of you know, it's been pretty tough for our family on the Sabbath. Between the 45 minute bus ride, 3 kids with car sickness, no air conditioning, from start to finish being gone 5-6 hours, the language barrier, not many kids the same age as mine, preparing 3 meals before 7:30 am and attending a tiny branch; I really struggled with Sundays.

Then, I struggled with the fact that I struggled with Sundays!

"Why can't I just enjoy it?" I'd ask myself. {Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed the members, but I NEVER looked forward to Sundays.}

I always thought that if I had been a pioneer for our church, I would have rocked. I would have driven the wagon out west, set-up camp, taught my kids about the Lord, helped others in need, cooked the meals and fought off Indian attacks, all without complaint!

Now, I wonder. Maybe I'm not as VALIANT as I hoped I was. :)

As I sifted through my thoughts, I came to this conclusion:

It's all about love "whom {or what} you serve. I did serve...but the language barrier created a wall as to how far I could serve.

I was in the Primary presidency...I prepared things, organized and worked hard. But the depth of the relationship I could have with most of the other members was stunted...because of lack of communication. I couldn't tell someone that their testimony meant alot to me { I didn't even understand what they were saying} or explain that I knew how hard their trial was and was there to help in anyway.

I only smiled and said, "Hola."

So I've determined that I'm going to get this language down!! I'm going to stop fighting it and pony up! {and I've been blessed with more understanding and empathy for those pioneers who struggled with the journey west.}

Like I mentioned earlier, we attended a ward today, not just a branch. {A ward is a group of church members (usually 200-800 people) that attend LDS church services together. A branch is a smaller group, not big enough to make up a ward {usually 20-150 people).

It was just wonderful! Troy had a group of 4 or 5 boys in his class. Yipppe!!! We are now close enough that he will attend young men activities during the week. The primary actually had more than 2 classes. And sacrament meeting was overflowing. We all felt so welcomed. It was interesting for me to note that our ward is made up of members from many different (Spanish speaking) countries, so they were all doing a bit of translating from their native terms. We have families from Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Panama.

The best thing is, I can't wait for Sunday.


Tonja said...

Awesome! I'm so glad for you guys. I think it will make a huge difference.

Shelley/Chain Reader said...

I get grumpy just going to church and I have it easy! I'm glad you have found a good ward. Hope you are all doing well!

Stephen Rioux said...

You guys ROCK!!!, that must have took a lot to move to a different country.

Keep up the faith girl and the Lord will bless you in many ways.

Lara said...

I can learn a lot from your positive attitude, Shawna!

BreeWee said...

Oh I have missed reading your blog... caught up and this is EXACTLY what I am dealing with here in Hawaii, totally missing my old church/Bible study ect. Thanks so much for the reminder and helping me change my attitude!