Monday, November 14, 2016

Nobody's home!

So, to be honest, this week was very uneventful, besides Thursday and a few other things. So I'll talk about Thursday.

It was a super good day. During our morning planning session, we decided to use a new tracting method that we learned in a book I found laying around the house called Member Missionary Work and finding the elect of God. It is such a good book! I've learned so much from it! It basically told us to pray and tell Heavenly Father that we're going tracting at a specific time, in a specific area, and that we need to know which streets to knock. After the prayer, we both looked at a map and wrote down around 5 to 10 streets that we have even slight hunches about. Then we compare our lists. We ended up with 2 that were the same, and then we did it for another area and came out with 3 that we got the same. So after planning we went to lunch. We ate a ton because we had been fasting since last lunch to find people to teach! Then we went to visit the people that we had planned on. Like usual, 1 out of the 3 people weren't home, and the 1 that was there we only talked to for a few mins because he was busy. We planned for this, so we used one of our streets that we had written down during planning. We ended up finding one person who we set a date to come back and talk to (we visited her later in the week and she told us she was about to leave her house so she couldn't talk. At least we tried!), and then we went to the other area that we had planned on tracting in at 5 pm. It was really cool because with just 2 streets we found 3 more people that we marked dates with to come back, and they all seemed really cool! 
Anyway, after doing that for about an hour and a half, we went to visit a referral from some other missionaries. We got there and she wasn't available! Then we went to another referral and she wasn't home. After these two people didn't work out, we decided to go visit a inactive member named Rogerio. The ward gave us a list of people to go and find, to see if they actually live at the address that they have on file. Rogerio was off of this list. So we go to his house, ring the interphone (because everyone has a big gate and wall around their house) and then he comes outside and invites us in. First of all, his house was super nice! He had a piano, decorations, nice couches, etc. It looked like it could maybe be an older home in the US from what I saw, maybe like Roger Christensens down in fairview. Anyway, this guy is probably in his 50s and he is really German, light skin and blue eyes. He had pictures of his grandparents and they both looked very German. His grandpa was wearing a military uniform, so my guess is that he moved to Brazil once they lost the war. But that's besides the point. We started talking to him about his hobbies, when he joined the church, etc. Then I shared a thought on the importance of prayer using Helaman 3Ç35. Then once we asked if he needed anything else, he asked if we could give a blessing, because his throat has been hurting him for over a week now and it was hard for him to talk. We said yes, and so I needed to consecrate the oil for the blessing... It was so bad! I said everything wrong, and I know that I didn't say everything I needed to. I've only done that one other time, and I read it off of a paper. The Lord knows what I'm trying to do though so I think he will let it slide this time! 
After we got done, he told us something so cool, maybe the coolest thing I've heard since I've been out here. All though that day and that night, he had been needing to hear the word of God. He just felt like he needed something like that, anything at all! So he finally decided to call one of his friends who is a member of some sort of Protestant church, and literally right before he was about to pick up the phone, he heard his interphone ring. He looked outside and it was us! He told us how this was a big testimony to him, and he really felt like the Lord was looking out for him. It made me really happy that I'm following all the rules and trying my hardest, so when the Lord wants to use me to help someone else, 'Ill be in a place where I can! What's cool is everything that happened lined up perfectly for us to be there right when we needed to. Some of our referrals weren't home, a member saw us on the side of the road and gave us a ride to the church saving us time, etc. Super cool experience!

Okay now for other stuff. I've learned out here is to really appreciate the small things. The other week we were walking around and on the side of the road there was a boulder, probably a little over waist high. I saw it and realized that its the first boulder I've seen since I started my mission! Everything is just completely flat out here! I said to myself, ´Wow, that's a nice boulder!` and then I pointed it out to my companion, who agreed! He said its been months, maybe even over a year since hes seen one that big and it is a nice boulder! Who would've imagined I'd be grateful to see a boulder! 

Oh! one more thing I forgot to talk about. On Saturday we walked a lot like I said because our 6 appointments didn't work out when the people said that they'd be there. It was super hot that day, and so we were dying of thirst. We passed a stand selling sugar cane juice, so we had to try it. They made it fresh right in front of us. The guy had a machine that he'd put a stick of sugar cane into it and squeeze all the juice out of it. He'd run it through, then fold it in half and then run it through again, for 4 times. then he mixed a little bit of lime juice in one and pineapple juice in the other. It was so good! I don't think you can get it back home in Utah though!!

So language update. Not a ton of improvement, I'll have a moment here and there where I'll understand stuff, and my ability to speak is still coming, but no huge breakthroughs yet. I've been thinking a lot about what uncle Mark said when we talked in between the Provo MTC and the Brazil MTC. You can't get frustrated or worry about the language for the first 3 months in the field. I only have 1 month and about 2 weeks, so I still have some time before I hit that milestone. I just need to have faith that I'll be good by that point if I continue to work hard at it!

Have a great week!

Love, Spence 

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