Today was awesome!!!!!!!!!! Elder David F. Evans of the seventy spoke to us today for about 3 hours!!! I’ll write more later in my letter.
It's good to see Dad happy with the grandkids.
Way to go mom talking the price of your home up 10,000 bucks! That's what’s up!
Baby # THREE!! Yayyy!!! James told me through the email as well last week I think it was. I'm excited for them :) But the mildly bad news is that I'll Still be on my mission when they have the baby but the good news is that my niece/nephew won't notice the difference :)
So how was your week? How is E Cosme doing and your relationship?
My week was good. My relationship with Elder Cosme is still fairly good. Sometimes it's a struggle and sometimes it's really frustrating but I pray a lot to have patience and love and charity. So this morning to go to the conference I was like "Hah, I'll shine his shoes while he's taking a shower and then I'll put them back!" And so I did that and we left and we were on the train and I saw his shoes and they were the Other pair of shoes!!! The ones I didn't shine!! I was like "Gahhhhhhhh" But I mentioned it to him and he said he saw that I'd done that and I just said "Well at least they'll be all pretty for this week right?" Sometimes it's a real struggle not to get angry with him but I've certainly built up a higher tolerance and a higher patience in the past 3 months. This is one of the purposes that the Lord had in Elder Cosme and me being together. I've really had a good opportunity to grow in ways that I never would have grown otherwise. Like never. And so it's not always easy but I'm trying to make the best out of my situation and be more like Christ.
When are your next transfers?
March 4th. This is the last week of this transfer
What is one of your favorite childhood memories?
Being held in the arms of my mother *Awwww* Haha nah I'm just kidding I don't remember that too well. I do remember one time though after we'd gone to the dentist (I think) we'd stopped by sonic (I think?) And on the way home I fell asleep in the car and then you carried me into the house and tucked me into bed while I was still sleeping :) I think that happened once as well where I woke up while we were pulling in but I continued to pretend to sleep and you did the same thing and when I got in bed I slept all the same! It's crazy to believe I was ever small enough to be carried by you!
Do you sleep well at night?
I do. Sometimesss the mosquitos or other bugs bite me and annoy me and then I sleep a bit restlessly but I usually sleep well.
What do you usually eat for breakfast?
Sometimes a banana shake, sometimes bread with ham and mayoneise. Sometimess other things. Banana shake is one of the easiest and fairly cheap and most tasteful and so is the bread.
I don’t know if I’m going to get to do my missionary spotlight on you before I leave the ward, but in case I do, is there any particular thing or experience(s) that you would like me to share with the ward? Any message to them you would want me to share??
You might could share (might could....very southern right?) my story with Elder Cosme if you wanted.
Did I mention I'm learning Spanish again? And starting to watch the preach my gospel videos with French subtitles :) It's fun. I like to learn. I was talking with some Elders from Argentina about some of my questions about español that I've had these days.
We did a service project..more like he did a service project for a sister in the ward. She only had one tool (I think it's called a hoe) and so Elder Cosme went at it and I was ready to help and offered it 2 or 3 times but he just said "nah that's alright, it'll be fast" And it only took him about 30 minutes and then he used the sisters bathroom to take a shower because he got dirty. During which time I rested in the hammock and even slept for a bit :) It was good.
So Delia and Francisco (or Xico or Chico which would be pronounced Shicoh in English I think) were confirmed members of the church this last Sunday! Yesterday! So that was cool. Unfortunately Elder Cosme smelled Alcohol on the breath of Francisco when we went later that day to visit them....This is something that brings sadness to me but at least we know now and we can talk with him directly about this.
Also it appears that their daughter, Kesia, has lost a large part of her interest in the church...something changed with her in between our visits, we think that it might be the boyfriend. We'll continue to work with them and try to help them.
We found another awesome family this week. The son works with some members and the mother, who is a mother of Eight, is Very friendly and accepts us openly and is excited to hear our message and already read half the pamphlet about the restoration.
Andddd today!! Today was awesome!! We had Elder Evans visit our mission with his wife! They are awesome! He spoke for about 2.5 hours while she spoke for about 20 minutes. Before it all, we all had the opportunity to shake his hand which was cool! He shared so much knowledge that was very much inspired of the Lord I couldn't talk about all of it. I enjoyed all of what he said. He spoke in English and another Brazilian translated what he said. It was very powerful.
These days I'm studying the life of Christ and what kind of things He did that were special, that set him apart, that made him Christ. One of those things is that He always taught and spoke with power and authority even unto the confounding of the Pharisees. Even to the point that he knew the hearts, thoughts, and intents of those that sought to stop him. This is a kind of power and authority that I've been really wanting as a missionary to be a better disciple of the Lord and this is something that I saw manifested in Elder Evans. When he spoke it was with power and authority.
I'll tell you one of my favorite parts of what he said first and then mention some other things. He said something along the lines of "We know that even if missionaries don't keep all the rules or do all the right things or don't teach the people the right way and we know that these missionaries still baptize even doing it the wrong way and not really converting the people. I brought this up with Elder Bednar and he said 'I know and it is to their condemnation.'" After that he paused for a bit and the whole room was quiet and I know a lot of missionaries were like "..oh shoot" It was a very powerful statement.
He went on to say that every person that we baptize just to baptize who isn't really converted is to our condemnation. When he said this I also thought back on the note that James sent me last transfer and I thought "wow, that's cool, James said the same thing basically." That was amazing. I think I might computerize my notes that I took now and write whatever else I remember and then maybe I'll send that to you guys later. He also talked D+C 31:2-6. In particular, in verses 5 and 6 he talked about our families and how when we serve faithfully that our families will live and that the Lord will prepare a place for them and he promised us that if we did serve faithfully that our families would be blessed and that the Lord would do everything he could to help them gain eternal life (meaning join the church) And this had a powerful effect with a lot of missionaries as a lot of missionaries were the only members in their families or they didn't have many members in their families. This was one of the few things about which Elder Cosme took notes on as he is the only active member of his family. 2 of his brothers are baptized but are inactive.
He also talked about rules of the mission, what a relationship should be like between a sister and an elder. About facebook. Other things that apply directly to the mission and while he was talking I had the thought "Ah, he talked with president Ferrin and prepared" But then afterwards I was talking with another Elder and he said that he thought that Elder Evans was just inspired by the spirit and when he said that, I agreed as well. I think the spirit helped him in large part to know what to say and how he needed to say it.
There was also an awesome part when an elder was talking in portuguese and Elder Evans responded without the translator having translated. Unfortunately I didn't personally witness this part..I think I was taking notes when it happened and so wasn't paying exact attention but I heard from a couple Elders that that happened. One said "Man, the gift of tongues exists! Or the gift of interpreations" because he didn't speak Portuguese, just understood it.
I could go on and on and on but I'll do what I said, computerize it and write what I remember still and then I'll probably send that to you guys alright? Anyways that was just awesome. Oh he also talked about what it means to be a true disciple of Christ!
I hope you guys liked the letter, thank you for all your love and support. The church is true. How could it not be. I know that the Lord has a great purpose in all of our lives.
Ever striving to be a better disciple of our Lord, Savior, and Redeemer, Jesus Christ