Monday, December 29, 2014

"Lord, Is it I?"‏

so here are the big news. I am staying in Baños...and I am going to be an Aunt!!!!! I am so excited!!!! Lets just say I didn´t believe anyone when they first told me. Had to see the baby bump and then there might have been a little bit of water on my face haha. I am so excited and ready to buy this little baby clothes!!! I might have already gotten a few things but that doesnt matter haha.

Okay so I am just so excited for this new change and this new year. Hermana Morales and I will be working really hard to make lots of changes in this new transfer and she has already been helping me a lot to better my spanish. Sometimes I get frustrated because I say things in Spanish like the Ecuadorians do, but she wants me to have perfect Spanish and so I am going to have perfect Spanish. Im honestly happy because I know that it will make such a huge difference for me in my future!

So now I would like to share with you something that I have been able to learn from my companion and that I wish to apply in my life and maybe you can all try to do that in yours.  First off something about me is that I have kind of strong reactions to lots of things, but I am sure everyone who knows me knows im like that and i might be a little overdramatic sometimes. When I was at home I sometimes had problems with my reactions but for the most part everyone just thought it was funny, here in the mission on the other hand it has been hard for me because I cant just walk away from situations I have to always face them because I am with one person all the time and so something I always said was", but yeah it is who I am. it is a part of my personality I cant change that." One to many lessons learned the hard way has taught me that those words are not true. My companion has showed me with love, kindness, and patience, that actually our whole purpose here is to change the hardest parts of our personalities so that we can become better persons. Maybe it is funny sometimes when I react strongly, but it isn´t something good when I get overally frustrated and mad at other people.  So something I read that I liked a lot that helped me to think through these things and how I could be more humble was in this talk by president Uchtdorf,
"It was our beloved Savior’s final night in mortality, the evening before He would offer Himself ransom for all mankind. As He broke bread with His disciples,  He said something that must have filled their hearts with great alarm and deep sadness. “One of you shall betray me,” He told them.

The disciples didn’t question the truth of what He said. Nor did they look  around, point to someone else, and ask, “Is it him?”
Instead, “they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say   unto him, Lord, is it I?1
wonder what each of us would do if we were asked that question by the Savior. Would we look at those around us and say in our hearts, “He’s probably talking about Brother Johnson. I’ve always wondered about him,”or “I’m glad Brother   Brown is here. He really needs to hear this message”?Or would we, like those disciples of old, look inward and ask that penetrating   question: “Is it I?”
In these simple words, “Lord, is it I?” lies the beginning of wisdom and thepathway to personal conversion and lasting change.

How amazing to think of it that way right. There have been so many times when I have been like this looking for the beam in the other persons eye before my own. Then I try to think about it. We all have such a need to change ourselves so that we can be truly humble and like Christ's disciples. lots of times I think I am humble because I visit people who do not have anything, but what difference does that make if I do not try to change myself to be more like them, truly poor in heart.  My Stake President, President White, told me before I came out here that I was going to need to learn to be humble, and as President Uchtdorf says we must think to ourselves sometimes " Lord, is it I?" so that we can remember what we truly have done to change ourselves to serve others.  As you ponder what goals you might set for this new year, think about what goals you can make to make a lasting change in your life. not something that will be easy to accomplish but that will help you to ask this question and know that you have tried your hardest to be a better person and to stregthen yourself to be better.  
I know that these things are true and that they can help us to make a big difference in our lives if we truly desire it.
Con todo el amor que esta en mi corazon, 
Hermana Dunkley
¡Feliz año nuevo!

                            Madison enjoying $10.00 ribs for her Christmas gift to herself
                            Hermana Morales and Hermana Dunkley

Monday, December 22, 2014


Well Merry Christmas everyone and I say crabby New Year because I have a pretty cool picture...yes I ate crab. It was pretty good, but my companion told me there are better crab out there so I have hope for the future in my business with crab. It was just a little weird to mess around with and break and all that but I'm sure with more experience I can become an expert. That is my goal for the new year!! haha.

Okay I am so excited for this Christmas Day. Well right now it has just become more important for me to celebrate it by thinking of others, but especially Jesus Christ and all that he has done for me.  I think I might be a little excited for it to be over so that all the people come back from their vacations and we can talk and visit all the people that we need to talk to. Here in Baños for the Christmas Season is crazy and everyone is working and doing things and so my hope is that everything calms down after these holidays. haha. I truly do love the Christmas season, but I like working and so I want to help everyone haha.

This last week I have truly been blessed by God my new companion is Hermana Morales...let's all take a guess from where she is....yes Peru. hahaha but it is truly amazing because she has been able to help me so much in this little time that we have been together. 

I realized a few things in this last week that I would like to share with you all. 
Firstly we are not perfect and we never will be. So stop being so hard on yourself....that was really just intended for me. But I think we all want this as people and especially in the Christmas season.

Secondly I would like to share a scripture that has strengthened me in this week.

  1 Corinthians:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

I love this scripture a lot it has helped me to realize that not only with temptations, but we can also substitue the word temptations with words like trials or fears. I have been able to understand from this scripture that God will give me trials and temptations not to pull me down, but that it will become the means by which I can change and become able to bear these burdens that are placed upon me. 

When I think of burdens I remember Christ especially in this season of Christmas or Navidad.  We celebrate his birth and through celebrating this time we need to apply his atonement all the much more in our lives. We need to remember all that he has done for us and have the desire to make the changes that we need to do.  I am so grateful for all that he has done for me each and every day. I hope that all of you out there whether you are mormon or from whatever type of religious background or not religious at all, that you can feel the love of Christ in your lives in this Christmas season.  Something my companion said yesterday that drew my attention was that we all have so much to be grateful for and we MUST show that to God through our prayers. If you could pray a little bit more in this season if only to show your gratitude I know it will be able to make a difference in your life in the way that you see the things you  have been given, whether you like them or not, that they have been blessings for you in your lives.

Happy Birth of Jesus Christ in this beautiful season and just a little note in Spanish.
 ¡Feliz Navidad! Recuerdan del Señor y todo lo que Él hace por ustedes en este Navidad.  Esfuércese para ayudar lo demás especialmente en ese temporada de navidad. 

Con Mucho Amor de Baños 
Hermana Dunkley

this is my crab. her name is cangrejo 

Monday, December 15, 2014

What we learn

Well it is that time again.  I am sure you are all getting used to the weekly madison lecture maybe a little tired of it by now, but what can I say I will continue to go on. There are not many other ways that you can hear from me, so yeah haha. 

This week was just honestly sadly normal. We didn´t have much success in inviting people to listen and we didn´t have investigators in the church and we didn´t have the success that I sincerly desired.  The hard thing for me was that it has been the normal thing that has been happening in these last couple of weeks. I do not really like that it is normal for me here. This is what is actually happening in the mission right now and it is hard to share that I am not seeing many people progress, but the truth is that I am learning.

What I am learning:

We all go through times like these. Whether it be like a missionaries where we become down because we haven´t seen a lot of people with the desires to change or whether it be other trials that we all go through here in this Earth it doesn´t matter because we all go through this. I have been so strengthened to know that the Lord finds it convenient to test his people and to put them into bondage. (As it says in Mosiah 24 and 25) He does this so that he can test them to see that they endure his trials with faith and patience.  I feel that way now like I have been put into bondage, I also feel like I have found myself reading this passage and sharing this passage numerous times because God has wanted me to learn how to pull through this.  I need to act out with my faith and be patient through this trial I am having just as all of us need to be in those times that are the hardest. I am so grateful for the blessings I feel and my Saviour, but I too have been guilty of not using his atonement in my life. I must act and do as I can to change.

It is funny, but sometimes I think this whole email thing is the means by which I confess, understand and change. It is how I have been able to cope with the hard things of a mission and enjoy the great things I have been able to experience out here. As we end this year I have learned what it means to be and to change. I myself have changed so much, I am the same me, but a more dedicated person to those things that will edify me and help me to be more strengthened. I read my scriptures, pray a whole lot more, and surprisngly for all of you back home I am eating a whole lot healthier. If you want a testimony of this ask my companion and she will testify that I ate two apples today and a whole lot of vegtables and good things in these last couple of weeks...hahaha. I am just a little proud of that sorry.  I am honestly so grateful to my father in heaven for the will to endure that he has given me. I need to learn to have more faith and patience as I have been able to learn from the scriptures. 

May you all enjoy this time that you have to live, grow and share with others. In this christmas season be grateful for the gifts you have and remeber to share them with others.
I love you all with all of my heart!
Con mucho amor de Baños,
Hermana Dunkley

Saturday, December 13, 2014

El es la Dadiva

Okay so this week has been a really great one! I think we are all getting in to the true spirit of Christmas cheer. Although we dont get to hear all the christmas music in the streets like in the States at this time. There is a whole  lot of lights and a giant christmas tree set up so it makes up for the lack of music.  Also I wanted to say before anything else that I am so happy to hear the wonderful news for Jackie back home! Congrats in your baptism!! okay so some things we have been able to learn about here as missionaries is about Él es la Dádiva!! it is such an amazing is the HE IS THE GIFT. I honestly love it and we have this amazing opportunity to share it with everyone. It should be set up as the headline for youtube for some days but im not sure which ones and there is a huge billboard set up in timesquare. I was like wow. that is amazing
The Lord really wants us all to share this gift of his birth and the knowledge that we have of it now. Not in 2 weeks, 2 months, or 2 years. He wants us to share now and have the confidence to do so.  I have been so blessed to have found some new people that are willing to listen to what we have to share I have been able to learn so much from them and I hope to continue to grow and help them out in the future!
I was reading a talk from conference because I now have the Liahona which is amazing. I read the talk by elder Klebingat about Approaching the Throne of God with Confidence and I really liked what he said. "I once asked one of my most faithful sisters why she was always so hard on herself, why she was always beating herself up over the smallest things. Her answer was a classic example of someone listening to the wrong voice as she replied, so no one can beat me to it.  Brothers and sisters, my counsel to you ACKNOWLEDGE AND FACE YOUR WEAKNESSES, BUT DONT BE IMMOBILIZED BY THEM because some of them will be your companions until you depart this earth life. No matter what your current status, thevery moment you voluntarily choose honest, joyful, daily repentance y striving to simply do and be your very best, the Savior´s Atonement envelops and follows you, as it were, wherever you go."  This is something I would like to share especialy with all the young women back home.  we must accept our weakness and more importantly accept the Saviors atonement for us! I am so extremly grateful for him everyday of my life and I am so extremly happy to share this gift that I have of knowing he is my savior with the people of Ecuador. May you all enjoy the gift you have been given of his birth in this month of December. Rember the importance of all that he has done for you and come unto him, follow him. He will always be there for you.
As always I love you all so much and am so thankful for you all at home and in other parts of the world
Con mucho amor de Baños,
Hermana Dunkley

Through God anything is possible‏

First off I just want to share a really kind experience I had today.  We were in Quito for a training my companion had so I was just waiting in the offices not doing anything, so the senior married couple missionaries and the president of the mission invited me to be apart of their prayer to start off the day so I just walked in like normal.  I hadn't remembered what it was like to listen to a prayer in english and also to just listen to all of the words that others say for the missionaries everyday.  Sister Nuttell prayed that we could all be inspired to  help others, but more importantly that others could find us and be interested to listen to our message.  She asked that we could be blessed with the protection from God.  I felt so humbled to hear her prayer, I started to cry.  I had a hard week and I was trying to contemplate in how can I change again so that my investigators will go to church.  I was contemplating in how can this family that we just met have the desire to come to our church and not the Catholic like they do every sunday.  I was contemplating in how can I help our less actives who work Sundays, or our investigators who work Sundays, to feel the need to keep the sabbath day holy.  I think I was contemplating all these things with only my own strength and not thinking of what does God think I should do.  It was so overwhelming having so many things to do for others that I had no idea how I could do it all so that my week could end with happiness rather than why aren't people coming to church. 
Then I was given the conference talk from November which is really beautfiul and I was able to feel the Spirit of comfort in my heart.  I cannot do everything, but through God I can do anything I need, want, or desire.  I want people to come to church, I need more faith, and I desire to have success here in my sector.  All I can do more is look to God pray with all of my heart and be obedient to his commandments. that is what i want and that is what i will do. My mission president told me a quote that I really like "The Lord cannot guide our footsteps until we move our feet"
May all of you have a wonderful holiday season and remeber what the Lord has done for you in this time tan maravillosa. I love you all!
Con Mucho amor de Baños..well currently Quito...
Hermana Dunkley