Monday, February 22, 2016

THE LORD DID STRENGTHEN ~ Week of Training & Divisions

Sirio letting us meet his chickens
Selfie from today & 
Sunday with my companion 
I don't know why the email did not go through from last week but here it is, along with this weeks~ 
February 15th, 2016
Oi oi oi!!! Happy Valentines day everybody!!! This week was full of divisions with the sisters in our zone, miracles, deaths, teaching, and a ton of sun and rain! We are still dying in this heat and humidity, but loving every minute of everything. I love you all and hope you have an amazing week!
Monday, February 8, 2016.
Today we taught such a powerful lesson. We are teaching a woman, F., and her husband, M. They are friends with N. (a recent convert) and E.. N. invited them to come to church with them and they came! We are so excited to be teaching them. They have been seeking out a church and felt good at ours. They already have testimonies. Members invited them to the ward youth encampment and they loved it and got to meet so many members. All because someone invited them. It has strengthened my testimony of member missionary work. We taught them the restoration and Wow! the spirit was so strong. Always when it comes to the first version of Joseph Smith, the people feel the truth. It's my favorite part to teach. The lesson went perfectly. We work together so well because my comp has a gift of speaking directly and clearly the doctrine, and what is needed to be understood, and I have the role of helping them feel the spirit and receive that confirmation in their heart that it's true. It's a good blend. We learn so much from each other. When it got to the part about Joseph Smith in the lesson, the whole room was so still and the spirit was undeny-able.  They both understood. They both felt the power. They both shed tears. What an amazing feeling it is to be an instrument in Gods hands. I love being a missionary more than anything. There are no words that describe the amazing feeling we get when the spirit takes over our actions and words. It's amazing!

2 Paulistas 2 Americanas

Tuesday, February 9, 2016.
Today, Sister Gregatto and I gave a trainment in our zone conference. Sister training leaders always give trainment to the elders and sisters in their zone at zone conference to help with the work and teach the zone about what can be improved. I thought, "Ah, we are just teaching the zone, it will be super chill and easy." But man, I was wrong! I'm not used to talking in front of a huge group of people, especially missionaries. It was so weird giving advice and training them on what they need to do. But it was a great experience. I love being able to serve and know God is preparing me for other things in my life right now. He always pushes me out of my comfort zone, but he always makes me stronger and better through it all. "There's no progression in comfort zones" - President Parella
We also started divisions with the sisters. I got to serve with Sister Condena for one day. She is from Cusco, Peru and is so sweet. 
I loved being able to serve with her. We talked and talked with so many people. Her comp is new to the mission and it was neat remembering my first division with the sister training leaders and how I was so nervous. Her companion was so nervous and quiet. I was so glad we could help her feel more comfortable. It is so great to be able to serve these amazing sisters with the same struggles and stresses that we once had ourselves.
Wednesday, February 10, 2016.
Today I went on divisions with Sister Alencar from Bahia, Brazil.

It was awesome serving with her. She was nervous at first, but when we got talking and got to know each other better, she completely changed. She really opened up to me about her feelings, worries, and struggles. I love being able to help her. This calling is such an incredible honor. I feel so blessed to be able to meet and help so many sisters from all over the world. I truly feel a sisterly love for each of them. I feel so immensely blessed. I'm learning and growing so much.

Saturday, February 13, 2016.
We received a sad text message today saying that E.'s dad had passed away. They asked us sisters to go to the funeral and help give comfort. Man, it was sad. The whole time I wanted to cry thinking about how hard it would be to not have a dad. Then, as he said his last goodbyes to his dads body, I couldn't help but shed tears thinking about how extremely sad it would be to lose my dad and to say goodbye to him. Saying goodbye to him in the airport when I was heading out to the MTC was hard enough. I can't imagine knowing that I wouldn't be seeing him every day for the rest of my life. I reflected so much on this. My dad means the world to me. I am who I am because of him. He has always, and will be forever, my example. I'm so grateful for my sweet dad and incredible man he is. Our relationship is so special. I love him with all my heart. What an honor it is to be his daughter. What an amazing knowledge we have of the plan of happiness. God's plan is so perfect. I know that my family will be together forever. There's no greater promise or comfort them this .

We are literally dying it's not even funny. I've never been so grateful for air conditioning in my entire life. 
I love the dogs here, they make me miss my Casper haha

Tuesday, February 16, 2016.
So, we were walking down the street and a man started yelling at us, "Hey! I want a book!"  Um, ya.... When someone yells at us from the side of the road it's normally because of three things – they want to rob us, they are on drugs or have been drinking, or they are crazy and aren't thinking straight. So, of course, we ignore and keep walking. This happens often as missionaries. It's normal. But this time he kept yelling at my companion went over to talk to him. Ahhh! I kept saying, no, sister no! She went over and started talking to him. Surprise, he is a less active member of 20 years and served a mission in São Paulo. He told us that he wants a Book of Mormon and after we had talked to him for a while, he said he felt good and wants to come back to church. We were so amazed. He has been inactive my entire lifetime and is wanting to return. God definitely works in mysterious ways to use us to help his children. It was an amazing experience to see him recognize the spirit again. We hardly spoke a word. We just listened to what he wanted and needed to say. And because we listened to him, he felt the spirit just by us being there with him.  The spirit is so powerful.
Wednesday, February 17, 2016.
Today rained a ton, but we talked to some amazing people. We are teaching the son of a recent convert, L. She is the sweetest lady and treats us like daughters. We have been teaching her the lessons again and she expressed her concerns for her son, M. He drinks a ton and is trying to stop drinking, but doesn't know how. We asked her if she could talk him into talking with us and receiving the missionary lessons too. He has hit rock bottom with his addiction to drinking and accepted to listen to us. Man, we were so excited! I love helping people like him. -People that are addicted and want to stop. That want help. The only person that has power to cure and heal anything is our Savior, Jesus Christ. The gospel helps all. So, we started teaching him and he was super interested. We challenged him to baptism and he accepted! We are super excited to help him and teach him. The atonement is so real and so powerful.
Thursday, February 18, 2016.
We have been instructed by President Parella to have the sisters come to our area for divisions so that we can be an example to them of how they need to work in their area. But yesterday evening as we were planning for the next day, something didn't feel right. The sisters working in Livramento we're going to be coming to Uruguaiana. We always call their zone leader before the division to see what we need to accomplish, what difficulties they have, and what we need to help them with. Their zone leader gave us his concerns. The sisters aren't working how they should and they are opening the area as new sisters. The sisters don't have much experience because they have only been in the mission for a little time. The spirit was telling me strongly that we needed to go to their area to help them. My companion agreed. We called their zone leader and then he called the assistants to see what could be done. The assistants talked to President Parella and he allowed one of us to go there and help one sister and the other would stay here and help the others. President said that their senior companion would arrive here and the junior companion, that is being trained, would stay there. But, he said it didn't matter whichever training leader could stay or go. So, we prayed to know who needed to stay and who needed to go. But we didn't receive an answer. We wanted so badly to know God's will so that we could help the sisters how he wanted. This morning, before my personal study, I prayed hard to know if God needed me to stay or go. He knows his missionaries and their needs, so he is the one that needed to let us know where we were needed. After my prayer, I began to read my Book of Mormon. And to my surprise, my prayer was immediately answered. Mosiah chapter 23. Every phrase talks about traveling. The words hit me so hard. I knew what I needed to do and where God needed me. He answers prayers. I am a witness and cannot ever deny! I kept reading and in verse 10 he gave me an answer that made me emotional. What an amazing experience. I will never forget this answer that he gave me and the sweet comfort that he gave me knowing that he would use me as his instrument. I felt such peace knowing what God wanted me to do. So I headed out to Livramento. The bus ride was so amazing looking out at the wide-open spaces of grass and cows.
I got to serve with the cute Peruvian sister named Sister Barbosa. 
I love Peruvians. They are so sweet. She's from Lima, Peru and arrived in the mission three months ago. She was so sweet to the entire time. I love being able to help her. There were lots of problems that needed to be solved there. As I gave feedback to her and asked her if there was something she needed to talk to me about, she opened up completely to me about her worries, struggles, and concerns. We talked for a good amount of time and I understood and that moment why I needed to be there. She had some of the same concerns and difficulties that I had when I began my mission. When I got there, she seemed sad and didn't say much, but wow, how she changed in one day! We became such good friends, laughing and enjoying the work together. Her whole attitude changed. It was such an amazing experience for me to help her. I noticed her doing and saying the things that I do and say. I feel so grateful that Heavenly Father knew I needed to be an example for her and help her know that she can do difficult things. At the end of the division, She thanked me so sweetly and said, "Sister, thank you so much. I wish you could be my companion." I couldn't have felt better knowing that God used me to make a difference in her life. I love being a missionary and know that God uses his servants to fill his work of salvation and happiness.
A man in the street dressed like a woman for Carnival...haha
My companion & I cooking in the humidity. haha 
I said, "Give a look to the camera of how you are feeling right now." soooo HOT

We had to walk up this for lunch...killed me haha

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