Tuesday, July 18, 2017

"I hit the one year mark this week...."

Me and Elder Alves on our porch 

Hi everyone!! 

So how are you all doing!? I'm sure everything is great! I had a bit of a shock this week when I realized HALF of July has already passed. On Saturday I was seriously confused on how it was already the 15th and I thought I had time traveled haha!! Time is flying by! This week for us was great! It ended with a AWESOME Sunday and that is always a plus for any week! But I will get to that! 

Tuesday we had an interesting but cool experience! Last Sunday we had done some splits with our Bishop and the Priests in our ward, so we had some appointments marked for the week of people who we found Sunday who said we could leave a message with them. Tuesday we had one of these people marked to go visit! So we went and found Antonio. Neither me or Elder Alves knew anything about this guy because we weren't in the group who marked to go meet him. From the minute that Antonio answered the door we realized that he had some problems. He is probably about 50 and he lives alone. He let us in and started to talk about how his sister is a member but inactive. So after we talked to him for a while we came to a crossroads. We could tell that he had some mental problems and didn't really know what was going on. We could've left and not left a message, since he probably wouldn't understand a whole lot anyway. But I had the strongest feeling from the Spirit that we needed to stay and share a message. So we did! We talked about the Restoration and it was really cool. Antonio thought it was a great story and said that he liked the message. He said he felt peace during the lesson. I really felt the Spirit too. I thought, "He too is a son of God and if it doesn't understand us, he can feel the Spirit." And that is what happened! It was just a small, but significant experience for me for some reason! 

Wednesday was great! We had an AWESOME lesson with Davi and Michele! They are the best! Because they had been sick last week, it had been more than a week since the last time we had seen them! So we were excited to teach them again! We had decided to read 3 Nephi 11 with them. We just all opened our scriptures and sat in a circle reading the word of God. I had another one of my "holy heck I'm on a mission" moments! I don't know why but as we were all reading I just got this big smile on my face and thought, "wow, I cannot believe I am here reading the Book of Mormon in a different language, with people who don't fully know me, in a country FAR from home." It was just awesome. After the lesson we were talking about how we were feeling and Michele explained how this was just feeling right. We got really excited and then invited them to church and they said they would come! But I will get to that later! 

Friday night I had a faith-building experience but in an unexpected way. So we were up in a far-ish part of our area searching for this man named Raimundo. We had passed by there a few weeks earlier with out Ward Mission Leader because he knows Raimundo. He wasn't home at the time so we decided to come back. We remembered where the house was, but the problem was that we couldn't remember what the name of the man who lived there was! The time we had passed by we didn't even meet him cause he wasn't home. So this time we just decided to knock on the door and hope for the best. This kid answered the door and we started to do a normal contact with him when he said, "wait, I think I know why you're here!" He ran and got his dad who was Raimundo haha! So he let us in and was super nice and let us talk and get to know him. Normally when we do these visits with inactive members we start by taking down some of their info to see if they have moved or changed phone numbers or somthing like that. So we did that then started to talk about the Restoration to see if he remembered. That was when the visit changed. Raimundo started to talk about how he was now in a different church and then started to talk a whole lot of stuff negative against the church. About the Book of Mormon, about the Priesthood, about a whole bunch of stuff. He was attacking us pretty much. I really have not had much of this on my mission so I didn't really know how to handle it. I just listened and let him talk. The faith building part was with every word against the Church he said, I just felt my testimony growing. It was weird. I just kept thinking, "but I know that this is true" and "I wish he could feel this too!" It was pretty cool. I didn't Bible Bash or anything because I didn't want to. At the end me and Elder Alves both just bore our testimonies. He seemed pretty shocked to see that. It kind of took him by surprise. I love this work! 

Saturday was a fun day as we had one of the Priests go out with us for the afternoon. Junior, the priest, saw the tough part of the work haha. We had about 4 appointments marked, one being a friend of Jr's and every one fell through. So we started to do some contacts and talk with people. Jr was so awesome! He only is 16 but was not scared or nervous at all to talk to people! At least from what I could tell haha! It was cool to see how open and ready he was to talk about the Gospel already, only being 16! We all need to be willing to be like that! 

So the big, amazing week end was Sunday! I was expecting for about 5-6 people who we invited to come to church. As the meeting was about to start only 1 had shown up! I was standing in the door waiting and I heard the meeting start. With a sigh I went to sit down, a little discouraged. Especially about Davi and Michele. They are like ALWAYS true in the commitments. And they weren't there. So the meeting started and we sang the opening hymn and prayer and during the announcements I felt someone tap on my shoulder. I turned around to see Davi and Michele with their daughter Julia standing in the back smiling and waving! I literally almost screamed with joy haha! I don't know why but I just love them so much! I knew they were going to come through! So they came to church and loved it! We didn't get a lot of time to talk to them at the end but we are going to visit Tuesday. Another awesome thing was the reaction of the members, especially the leaders. The minute Sacrament meeting ended Davi and Michele had like a crowd around them of members who wanted to greet them. It was seriously amazing! They were celebrities! Haha! I was instantly grateful and happy that the Lord blessed us with awesome members who are so loving! All you back home, when an investigator goes to church, go be their friend!! The Elders or Sisters will love you forever! Our Gospel Principles teacher said that during Relief Society she sat with Michele. And during the closing hymn, Michele got emotional and started to cry! So I am so excited to go visit them Tuesdayto see how they liked church!! Great Sunday

So that is about it folks! I was reading in Ether 12 this week and came across verse 4 which I love!! It states

"Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for better world, yea, even place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faithmaketh an anchor to the soulof men, which would make thesure and steadfast, always abounding in good worksbeing led to glorify God."

Don't lose hope!!! God is in control and all will be well in the end! It is all true! 

Love you guys more than anything.
I hit the one year mark this week... talk about crazy! 

Elder Spencer P. Christofferson

Me and Elder Alves attempting a photo but my tie blew in his face. I thought it was pretty funny!

 Me and my new Bahia soccer jersey! I think it is cool! haha

 It's Michael Jackson

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