This week was full of miracles and great experiences. We worked really hard and we saw the Lord bless us for our efforts. I love the feeling when you collapse on your bed dead tired because you did everything you could that day. To start off meu filho (my son) had his first baptism! He was really nervous but he did great. He deserved it because he has been trying so hard! When I saw the baptism I had a flashback of my first baptism and how it was an event that I will never forget. It was an experience special and spiritual to me. I sure that he will never forget his first baptism also. This week we receive a reference to visit a woman with the name of Kayla. We went to see here and the lesson was amazing. She is an elect to say the least. She was married for 20 years and her husband controlled her life. She couldn´t study, she had to go to his church, she didn´t have any freedom. Finally she couldn´t take it any longer and she ended her marriage. Since this moment her life has been super busy because she is working to pay the rent and studying law to live up her dream to be a judge. During the week she leaves her house 5:30am to work and then she studies at a college, she gets home a 10:30 every night. When she told me how busy her life is I was so shocked that she accepted to let us visit her on her Saturday. This showed us that she has a strong desire to find the right path. We taught the Restoration and I was dying because she has a big old cat and my allergies still are killing me. But In the end everything we fine. She accepted the invitation to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. The we invited her to go to church with us on Sunday morning. I was thinking in the back of my head that she wouldn´t accept because it´s early and she will be tired from a long week. but to my surprise she accepted! We went by her house Sunday morning and she was waiting for us in her Sunday clothes. But wait there is more. She stayed for the 3 hours and at the end I asked what she thought. She said ´´Eu adorei´´ (I loved it)She stayed for 1 hour after at the Church to watch the baptism. I´m filled with such joy and happiness that the Lord has put someone so special in my path. I know that the things we will share with her will change her life for the better. I´m just sad that we can´t get the ball rolling fast because we can only visit her on the weekends, but God will give us a way. Transfers are coming up in 2 weeks and sadly after being in Gama for 6 months I think I´m getting transferred. I´m going to work my hardest so that I can leave the area better than when I found it. I love this place and the people here. Thank you so much Family for the box that I received. I´m so grateful for the letter and paintings that I received from my nieces and nephews. I can´t believe that they are so big now! I hope that when I return they will recognize there favorite uncle ;) This work that I´m doing is without pay of money but I can fill the personal and spiritual payment that I am receive everyday from the Lord. I know this labor that I am doing is a sacred labor and that I was called by a prophet of God. I know that my mission is being led by President Lundgren who is a inspired man to guide us. I know my Savior lives and that we can us he blood that he sacrificed to clean away our sins so that we can be free of the guilt and pain. I´m happy so say that our mission will have the privilege to be visited by Elder Costa the 9th of September. I can´t wait to her his inspiring words.
This week I was doing a lot of reflecting about my life. About the things I have done well and the things that I wish I did differently. Looking back I realized that all of my success that I have had in my life was because of my family, leaders, friends and course Jesus Christ my savior. I´m so fortunate to have been blessed with so many great people in my life who have been instruments in the Lords hands to make my life a better experience. One of the most special things about being on the mission is that making friends that will last forever. The friends that we make on the mission are made because of the great and hard times that we pass together. Through the laughter and the tears we are brought together to be a higher level of friends. But most importantly we share the same purpose here on the mission, to help other come unto Christ. With this common desire we share the same desire to preach the gospel to others. I think alot of my Grandpa Gary who served his mission 60 years ago, even today he meets up with the friends that he made on his mission. I´m cherishing the moments that i´m passing on the mission now and excited to have more to come.
Elder Rojas comp(Elder Oliveira) was having problems on the mission with health so he returned home early after only being on the mission for 7 months. I was wanting him to stay but he said that his body couldn´t handle it any more. So we are in a trio Aliser, Rojas, and I. I was thinking of how I could use this trio to help the zone improve. So I went to one of our areas (Santa MariaSul) for 3 days. It was the fastest three days of my life. We worked like dogs. We were able to find 15 new investigators and mark 6 baptismal dates. One of the Elders was feeling sick because we were working so much. So we left him at the house of a member. I was super happy because usually trades are only 1 day but with three days we were about get new habits and kill the bad ones. I was able to see a huge improvement in these Elders throughout these 3 day.
I´m short on time so I´m skip to what happened on my Birthday.
Since its been 5 months that I´ve been in my area I am really close with all the members. On my Birthday I had to cut 5 Birthday cakes. It was literally they most crazy thing in my life, I have never eaten so much cake. I was so grateful for the love that the members showed me, I really felt like I was at home. I have pictures of everything but sadly I forgot my camera at home so I will send them next week.
Today we played soccer with President and after we went to a really great place to eat. I have never eat so much food in my life this weekend. I´m so grateful for this time I have on the mission. This is my second birthday on the mission and if I stay one more transfer I will have the privilege to have 3 Birthdays on the mission.
Thanks you everyone for the emails and the prayers. It really means a lot to me.
To start off the weather lately is extremely weird. During the day is super hot and you feel like you are melting in the sun. Also it has been without rain for months and it dryer than a desert. And at night is super cold where you need 2 blanks to keep warm. Because of this rapid changing of temperatures I´v had a cold with a stuffy nose for 2 weeks. But it plays part in the mission.
Looking back this week was blur. It passed really fast with great moments and difficult moments. Since I´m training I´m trying to do everything I can to teach my comp how to be the best missionary on his mission. Through these moments I´m getting a sample of how it is as a Dad. Your kid is a reflection of the parents. The apple doesn´t fall far from the tree usually. I have been trying to be more like Christ to help my comp be a better missionary and person. Boy is it a test. I fine myself being harder on myself than any other person so that I can be that example. At times I wonder what else I can do. Through this process I can feel changes happening in my heart.
This week I was pondering alot about my purpose here on my mission. Why I had to leave my house for 2 years to talk about The Church of Jesus Christ. When I got here I thought my purpose was to just baptize. But with time, I realized that I´m a farmer in the Lord's plantation. Without a doubt one of my functions is to harvest the ready crops and baptize the people that are ready. But also I´m here to plant the seeds too. At times when teaching someone something, at that moment they aren´t ripe, they aren´t willing to listen. But maybe in a few months or years they will need that message. At times I feel like no one is wanting to follow the example of Christ, but I need to try to understand that, at this very moment they don´t want to follow Christ, but later in life they will. And because of that planted seed they will grow in the gospel.
I was blessed to have a talk with the Stake President and he was able to pass many words of wisdom. He said: At times what you are doing doesn´t seems affective but if you are doing everything you can. Some day you will look back at see all the changes you made. This gave me a feeling of comfort because in life we will do everything we can, and in the moment nothing happens. But after we can see the seeds we planted and the fruit that is ready to be harvested.
I´m so grateful for the mission. I´m so grateful the lessons I´v learned that have helped me to be more patience and more loving. These lesson would never be learned without a trial. The trial is what pushes us out of our comfort zone and causes a change. It can be a good change or a bad change. This change is determined by our will power during this time of chaos. I´m so grateful for the Savior and his presences during these difficult times so that I can have the will power to make a good change.
I invite all of you to remember that we can´t control what difficulties we will have in life but we can control how we react to them.
Thank you for the love and support of all my friends and family members. I feel your prayers helping me everyday.
Remember that you can make a good change but one with the assistance of our Heavenly Father. Amo vocês!
This week was great. My first week with my son(new missionary on the mission). Elder Aliser a sweet kid from Argentina. He was born in the church and so were his parents. He Dad lives in Brasil and his Mom lives in Argentina. He has a huge desire to do the right and is hungry to learn. This is the recipe for success. It´s going to be a fun 6 weeks. This week was great because we were just inviting people to follow the example and to be baptized how Jesus was baptized. we were able to mark 9 dates this week. These people are excited to have the door of heavens available to be baptized. We are praying, planning and fasting that they will make it to the waters a baptism. One of the experiences that we had this weeks with Mayda; she is a investigator who loves coffee. We taught her about the word of wisdom and the blessings that she will receive if she would keep this commandant of God. She decided to stop drinking coffee and she threw all the coffee she had in her house away. We then helped prepare a hot drink that is like coffee but isn´t harmful. It was a great experience to see someone really want to follow the Lord and to leave a habit behind.
This weekend was really difficult to bring people to church because it was Fathers day Sunday. It was a disaster because we confirmed 10 people to go church through out the week. I had certainty that we would have a lot of people in church, but Saturday night everyone remembered that Sunday is Fathers day. They started to call and text us to say sorry because they had a event, party , etc with their father. It was a heart breaker for me and my Comp because we worked so hard this week. I was feeling super down and sad because it felt like all we did was in vain. I was sitting in sacrament meeting really down and I opened up the scriptures to Mosiah 24 which talks about the suffering people of Alma and how they never complained and never blamed God. It then says if we are faithful, God visits his people in their suffering. This gave me hope to hang in there and keep going. At times it doesn´t seem like there in light at the tunnel, but if we keep going with good attitude, the good times will arrive.
The scriptures are a guide of comfort and knowledge. I challenge you to ready at least 10 minutes everyday.
Thank you everyone for the support and love. Time is flying. I can´t believe that i have less that 1 year to fight for the Lord's army here in Brasil.