Hahahahaha! I was debating on whether or not to warn you guys that someone would bring a package from me but then I ended up forgetting anyways so it was kept a secret! It was Elder Gratil who brought it. He was my first zone leader -- the one that lives close to us and went to Gilbert High, etc. He ended his mission 2 weeks ago so I sent it with him. He was kind enough to bring it to you guys...well I kind of forced him, but yeah...I am very grateful!!!
So we were able to go and talk to Thatiane and clear up her doubts. The stuff she read on the internet made her believe that we think God is a man who walks the streets with us or something...I dont know. Ridiculous! We helped her to realize that she already has a testimony that these things are true. Now she will be praying a lot to help her mom let her go to church again. For now she doesnt want to strain their relationship so she isnt going. Keep praying that her mom will soften her heart and have a desire to learn about the gospel too...and from the source this time, not the internet!
I am feeling a lot better than I was last week. I know that Sister Felipe will teach me a lot since she is a recent convert of 2 years and worked a lot with the Elders in her area too before the mission. She has a special insight into the work. We are learning and teaching one another!
Miracles this week:
First off, the Spirit really worked on Thatiane and helped her remember how she always feels so good reading the Book of Mormon and going to church.
Secondly, we found an awesome family yesterday. Just listen to this story...it all happened because of the Lord, for sure! We received last week a referral from the internet for a Paulo on the Road Maria Quiteria de Jesus Medeiros, number 121. Its very close to the boundary of our area and a place that I´d never gone before. He asked for representatives of the church. We went there yesterday and tried to find the house. Note about Brazil: The house numbers are crazy and never have much of an order. Sometimes there is a light order...but in the midst of 100, 105, 120, 137, there will be a random 21, or 6903....yeah. You cant really trust the numbers here! Anyway, after a long haul....we found the number 121. The problem being that there wasnt a Paulo that lived there. We talked to everyone who was there in the front, and no one knew a Paulo. Great...all the way on the edge of our area for nothing, right?! Well we decided to pray for direction. When we ended our prayer we stood there for a few minutes thinking. I felt like we should walk back on the road and knock a few doors to ask if anyone knew a Paulo and Sister Felipe agreed, so we went back and hit a few doors a little farther down the road. No one knew a Paulo or invited us in when we invited them to hear our message. We kept going and decided to ask two girls that were selling hamburgers at a little stand if they knew a Paulo. One of them said there was a man named Paulo that lived in 118 down in the bottom (there was a little entrance with about 5 houses that all were #118...its hard to explain...its just how Sao Paulo is!). She said she didnt think it would be him, but we could try. Anyway, we went down there just to check and the daughter of Paulo answered the door. It wasn´t him who called but when we told them a little about our message they invited us in. We taught an awesome first lesson to Paulo, his wife, and their daughter. There were a few other kids there too but they came in and out. But this family appears to be sooo elect! Paulo goes to an evangelical church but he doesnt really like how they always yell, etc. His wife thinks the yelling is completely ridiculous and loved how we pray. They were really receptive...it was an awesome experience. I know the Lord put us there to find them. Who knows who put the referral for this other Paulo on the internet...but I have no doubt that the purpose was to find this family. I know the Lord answers our prayers when we ask for his help and act with our faith. When we do our part, He will ALWAYS do His.
I love the mission...its an opportunity to become who God wants you to become. For him to teach you that you have so much to learn but that you can learn it. That you can use your faith in him to work miracles. I am deeply grateful to be here serving Him.
So I think I have gained about 8 lbs on the mission...I hope its not so. Dont worry to much...I will start eating less and lose the rest when I get back! Yikes!
Love you guys like crazy!