Well, there have definitely been things this week that have tried my ability to laugh, but I´ve tried to keep to it. Like I said last week, we´re all going to face challenges and tests in life. I won´t lie, the mission is a grand test. Trevor described it to me once as "The refiner´s fire on steroids (or something to that effect)" but there are still amazing things happening every single day when we search for them. So, review last week´s letter. I throughouly enjoyed that talk. And that´s the news for the week.
So, to say we had some awesome experiences last week is an understatement. To be real, it was an awesome week, even with it´s difficulties. Much like the e-mail from a few weeks ago instead of one grand experience I would just like to relate a number of mini miracles that happened that I particularly loved.
Aluizio was confirmed yesterday! I was able to stand in the circle as he was confirmed and the Spirit that was felt was marvelous. I can´t really describe it in words. But what happened before was even better. Last Monday we had a mini party at his sister-in-law´s house with happiness and Elder Tribino and I left the message of the night. We talked about eternal families and the power of the temple in our lives. Aluizio and Regylani are so excited to go to the temple and be sealed as an eternal family. We visited them during the week and talked about Enduring to the End and that was a great visit as well. They have other relatives that have fallen away as well during the past few years and we´ll be visiting them this week. But the best part was yesterday during the Gospel Principles class. There Regylani made the comment that they we´re experiencing some hard times and challenges during their lives and they were unsure of what to do. Then, we showed up. She said that we were truly sent from God. Wow. Emotion time. I don´t cry much, even as a missionary, but that one hit home. Changing lives.
Joaquim, Eliane, and sons
Joaquim, Eliane, Tailon, Joaquim Jr. and Thynã are a family we´ve been teaching that was a referral from a member in the ward. They´re awesome! All of them are on date for baptism this coming Sunday. Thynã has already started doing seminary and he´s reading the Book of Mormon faster than his entire family combined. Joaquim (father) generally has to work on Sundays but yesterday we prayed that they could come to church as a family and the Lord granted our request. Miracle. All of the children are willing and want to be baptized. Miracle. Then yesterday after church Joaquim said "We felt like our faith was weakening and then all of a sudden, you guys showed up in our lives." Miracle.
The Rest of the Week
This whole week in general was a blessing. We´ve been blessed to teach a large group of people, and we´ve found a large number of new people who are actually interested. We´ve been blessed to find many new ways to teach effectivey and one of the greatest blessings in general is that Elder Tribino and I have start working together like never before. He´s such an awesome missionary and I´m learning new things from him every single day. I know the Lord put him in my life for a reason and I can´t wait to see more miracles.
Remember the Wellington Ward where I served in Kansas? Elder Weaver recently e-mailed me to say that they were able to really get the work moving after we left. The ward is becoming more unified and the missionaries have been blessed with more refferals. Sure, I´m not there anymore, but I left part of my heart in Kansas and I´m just happy to know I helped start a new era for them.
I guess my message for the day is that we´re always exactly where we need to be. Aluizio and Regylani. Joaquim, Eliane, and family. Other investigators. My dear beloved Wellington Ward. Whether we serve with a nametag or not, the Lord has placed us in specific locations for specific purposes. We just need to look. I can promise each of you (and remember, as a representative of the Lord Jesus Christ my promises are always valid) that if you look this week, you will see miracles. You will find someone to help. You will be able to help someone com closer to Jesus Christ. Yes, you may have to look, and look, and look harder. But, miracles never come without faith, and faith is a principle of action.
Até mais! Vos amo com todo de meu coração. Certamente O Senhor nos abençoa em grande maneiras todos os dias.