Sep 24, 2014
WOW! What a week haha. Muito Coisa. [There was a lot.]
I have very little time to write from now on because we have loooots to do as STLs now .... so crazy stuff has been happening here in Sao Luis so we’re keeping reaaaal busy!
But first of all, wow! Elder Leal was amaaaaazing!!! [Visiting general authority, Elder Leal, visited and taught the part of the Teresina Mission where Lauren is serving.] I seriously just loooove love looove our leaders. They are incredibly inspired men and women, completely lead by the Lord. It was so exciting because it was just our zone of 26 missionaries in this meeting. Also, in the beginning we had a mini meeting with just the leaders so it was like 10 of us and Elder Leal. It was soo incredible.
He talked a lot about balance. Finding the balance between developing attributes of Christ and techniques of the mission. He spoke about how we need to work on both but not one more than the other. He also talked a lot about the Spirit and truly letting the Spirit teach more than us. This is something I realize now is much easier to forget as we get more experiencd in the mission and feel more comfortable and knowledgable in the lessons. It was a very good reminder. I feel like I truly understand why God calls the youth. It always seems strange that these 18-21 year olds are out here carrying the work of spreading the gospel. The salvation of these precious people is in the hands of immature teens and young adults. How scary!! But then I realize that this is the pattern of the Lord. Everything--EVERYTHING is the same now as it always has been in the true church of God. David and Goliath, Samuel, Moses, Mary the mother of Christ, and Joseph Smith. All were super young--so unknowledgeable, so new. And yet they were the ones chosen to hold the highest responsiblilties and callings. Why? Because they are the malleable ones. I knew almost nothing going into the mission -- just that the Atonement was real. Without even a real strong testimony of the Book of Mormon. but just enough of a belief to get me going. Most of us are like that. But that’s when we really REALLY learn to do the Lord’s work and not our own, because we know nothing and we learn REAL quick how huge the nothing is that we know. And that’s when we rely on the Lord. Because we HAVE to. If we want to do the Lord’s work, we do it how He wants it done, and how He knows it needs to be done. That’s the real lesson. In my life, I dont want to live my life the way I think I should. I want to live it the way HE knows I should. I want to do that, because that’s where the real happiness is. I’m just soooo excited for all the youth in our ward going or already on missions. It’s the most exciting thing to me!!!
This week, I feel like I’ve begun to relearn this principle of really relying on the Lord. I had to give a training in District Meeting this week and because of all that is going on here, we had like 1 hour to prepare. haha. It was so intense. I feel like I was literally thrown into this whole training world. I dislike talking in front of a lot of people. especially in meetings of missionaries. Seriously, to this day, if they ask me a question or have me comment on something in DM, my heart is beating like there’s no tomorrow. but all of a sudden with barely any warning im giving a training. it was on helping investigators keep their commitments. and when we got up there, man. started out rough, just sis McKinney talking, but when it was my turn, (I’d already been praying and fasting a ton … haha) I just went for it. At first it was a little shaky, but then really the Spirit took over and I felt real power in what I was saying. It wasn’t just words and quotes and drawings anymore, but statements of truth , and real testimony. It was seriously the coolest experience. The key really is getting them to talk and think for themselves and not holding back. Being bold when they need it. Saying what is true and needed, not what’s sweet and gentle. If we need to change, we need to KNOW that we need to change.
I still don’t like giving trainings or talking in front of people, but I have to again next week, this time for the entire zone.... at least now I know it’s POSSIBLE without passing out :)
Thank you soooooo much Travis for your tips and help. I will deffffffinitely be using all that this coming training. I will let you know how it goes. haha.
This week we didn’t have a lot of time in this area because we’re always out in the other areas helping the sisters or other meetings. Tomorrow we’ll be traveling to Teresina for the leader meeting. Even with our busy schedule, we saw miracles in our area. Finding new people who are truly needed comfort or truth in their lives at this time. we’ll be visiting de novo this week that comes so ill let you know how it goes!!!!
ps. foi [there were] 2 guys who wanted to learn about the church, because 2 years ago they saw the movie “The Other Side of Heaven” and got super curious !!! How cool is that!!!!
I love you all sooooo much!!!!!!]
You are always in my prayers and I will try to respond to everyone, but I don’t promise anything :( sorryyyy!!!!]
ps. Don’t worry about us here, there’s a lot of stuff going on in Sao Luis, but we are taking precautions in everything and everyone is taking real good care of us. Members, pesq, the office. It’s just our phone that doesn’t work very well so we get notices late. but we’ll be staying in casa [home] every day after 6 pm from now on until further notice. We are disappointed, but it is better this than closing the areas down. It will all pass soon enough. Don’t worry about us! All is well. I promise! ]