Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Us Against the World

 *No new pictures this week....sorry!
In the 2011 Glastonbury headlining slot, Chris Martin introduced this song for the first time, describing it something along the lines of, 'Just imagine you're on a camping trip, and you're out there all alone, and it starts to rain, and there's nothing you can do about it, and you're miserable, and it's just like you're out there against the world'

Sometimes, in the missionary life, you're feeling pretty well like that. It seems like you've got a heck ton of stuff that needs to be fixed, or people that need to do something, but there really is nothing you can do. As an individual, your personal ability only extends so far to do the tasks that are set before you, and sometimes, you feel like it's really like it's you against the world. Here on Maio, over the 8 weeks I've been here, it's definitely seemed some days like it's us against the world, because the branch can be struggling, our investigators can fail to fulfill commitments, and sometimes, it can be straight up impossible to find people due to the fact that just about everyone in the town will all be at a given place when an event happens. This is where our own ability stops, and where we need to turn somewhere else. Our district leader, Elder Ernst, gave a training during our district meeting this week based on hope, and really what that can do for us in our lives, and for our work here in Maio. When it's just us against the world, we've gotta turn to our Heavenly Father and put our hope in him, and in turn, put our faith in him. This hope, first, is what gives our faith the power it needs to act. And what is it that this faith does for us? Well, according to Captain Moroni, in Alma chapter 44, we learn that 'God will support us, and keep, and preserve us, so long as we are faithful unto him, and unto faith... and never will the Lord suffer that we shall be destroyed'. So, maybe I just rant sometimes, and this makes no sense whatsoever, but I learned that, as we really have the hope that our Heavenly Father will help us, we won't be just 'us against the world', and that we will have the faith that will hold us up FOREVER.

With that being said, this week was jsut about one of our most successful weeks in terms of numbers here, being that we taught OVER 20 lessons, and had 2 investigators show up at church. One of these investigators, Louisa, happens to be one of the many blessings our Heavenly Father gave us as we've put our hope in him. A few weeks back, Elder Stone and I were taking one of our daily breaks at our local favorite (and by favorite I mean cheap) store, and we were drinking some pop, and this lady came up to us and asked us for like 100 escudoes (the local currency) or something, and we were like 'well, sorry, we don't have any money!', and she looked at us like we were stupid, and asked us what our names were, told us where she lived, and stumbled off. She was definitely drunk, and I just thought it was a funny experience. Well, this week, Elder Stone thought it a good idea to contact her at her house, so we went by, and surprisingly, she made a day with us to come by. We went back the next day and taught her, and let me tell ya, I don't think she spoke a word of Portuguese. She understands Portuguese perfectly, but speaks a VERY thick Creole, so I understood very close to nothing what she said. We taught a solid, simple lesson with her, and she said she would read the Book of Mormon with her kids, since she's forgotten to read. After that day, we were able to visit her two other times, taking her on a tour of our church one day, and on Sunday, she was just about the first person to show up, dressed in her Sunday-best, WITH all 3 of her kids (who are VERY well behaved, BONUS!). It was so darn cool to see, especially since we didn't go by her house prior to church that morning. She really liked church, and I think she really likes us. Finding her and teaching her was definitely a blessing from Heavenly Father.

As for Chano and Milcialita (that's actually how you spell her name, my bad for messing it up), this week was very up and down with them, but with them, we're just moving step by step. We were able to find time to visit with them just about every day, and they graciously fed us a variety of seafood on these various visits, and they've committed to living the Word of Wisdom, but we're still working with them on getting married to live the Law of Chastity. For them, it's just gunna be a thing we're going to have to take slow, every day. They truly are incredible people, and are so much fun to be around. They both firmly believe these things are true, and Milcialita LOVES reading the Book of Mormon. Right now, we've just gotta keep working on making these beliefs become actions. They weren't at church this past Sunday, which Elder Stone and I were bummed about, but we found out later that Milcialita gets killer migraines (just like I used to get), and had to go to the local hospital to get a shot to help with the pain, so, when someone is in a state like that, I'm not too miffed about them not making it to church. One night, after a visit with them that ran over what we wanted, we got out the door at like 9:28 and had to BOOK it home so that no harm would befall on us due to the fact of being out after 9:30. I found in that moment that my sprinting in missionary attire needs some work, and that my knees aren't in the shape they were last Spring during track season. 

So, with that, I guess we're just gunna keep looking forward. We freakin' WORKED this pst week, and it'll be a task to work what we did this week, but with Heavenly Father helpin' us out, it's never just us against the world, or in our case, the small population of Maio. 

I hope that you've all had rad weeks, thanks for ya love.
Love y'all, stay gucci chill and young money.

Elder Massey

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