December 12, 2016


Mi Familia y Amigos,

This week was a week of MIRACLES!! Oh my goodness it has been so fabulous. Let me give you an example of just how much the Lord was helping us this week....

So about 3 weeks ago we got a referral from some other missionaries for a sister that lives in a SUPER far away part of our area. WELL we decided Wednesday that we were going to go out there to try and find her. The only problem is that the missionaries only gave us her name and house number. In the United States that would be sufficient, right???? Well Panama is a different story... because about 95% of the houses don't have numbers, and if they do, they aren't in order. SO we go out there, get off the bus, and look at each other with a kind of "where do we start?" expression. Well we decided that our best option was to ask a group of old men that were sitting outside of this little store close to the bus stop. We asked, "Hey, do you guys know a Maria Rodriguez?" And they were off. Turns out about 8 people with the name Maria Rodriguez live there. They started spitting out names and directions telling us to go this way and that way and maybe it is her but no her last name is Ricardo but maybe it's the widow of Juan and then there's that lady over there but I can't remember if her name is Maria or Marta but my neighbors name is Maria but she's catholic and hey do you guys want a soda?... and it was about 25 minutes of that.  UNTIL an angel came. His name is Ariel, and he said that he would take us to a Maria Rodriguez that lives down the street and we could see if she's the one we were looking for. So we were like, Okay! So we go, and turns out, it wasn't her. BUT she said that there was another Maria Rodriguez that lives down the street that might be the one we were looking for.... so we go, and turns out, it wasn't her. BUT her neighbor told us of a Maria that lived on the other side of town... so we go, and turns out, she wasn't home. BUT some people across the street told us there was another Maria that lived on the other street... so we go, and turns out, she wasn't home either! BUT her husband was!!! And so we asked, is this house number 21???? And he said, "Why yes it is". 2 HOURS OF SEARCHING BUT WE FOUND THE HOUSE!!!!! So we asked if we could share a message with him and wait for his wife to get home. We taught a lesson about the Plan of Salvation, and it was beautiful. Maria Rodriguez got home just as we were finishing up the lesson... she was shocked to see us, but they both told us to come back and share another message. I believe in Miracles.

That was just a little thing. I don't know if she will get baptized, or how her story will turn out, but the Lord wanted us to find her. He didn't make it easy, but by making it such a struggle, he showed us that he is always there. Not to mention the fact that almost everyone in that town knows us now haha. As I was contemplating this experience, I thought of what it says in Mormon 9: 15-19, "God has not ceased to be a God of miracles". He hasn't ceased and he never will. His hand is always there. He is ALWAYS helping us! Sometimes we just have to take the time to see it. Sometimes we have to ASK to see it. As Nephi stated in 2 Nephi 4:35, "I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh". Ask for a miracle. Have faith.

As it says in one of the best Christmas movies ever...

"Seeing isn't believing, Believing is seeing"

I love you all so much!!! Have a FABULOUS week for me!!

Hermana Van Deusen

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