Monday, August 18, 2014

Sair do barco

This week was great! I feel like I say that every week, but really this work is just teaching me so much. I hope my letters aren´t super boring. I try to include some cool things, but I forget most of the time what you guys probably would want to hear. Anyway, we have been really trying to find people who are really interested in our message, and we have been trying to ``leave the ship`` and have seen some miracles.  (Leaving the ship is what President Dalton calls it when we act on our faith. Peter left the boat and was able to walk on water--something that only Jesus had done before. Lots of people look at that story as an example of a lack of faith, but how many others left the boat to try. We need to leave the boat(our comfort zones) to see miracles. Then as we exercise our faith, it grows.) 

First off, we were teaching the uncle of a recent convert in our ward. Samila was baptized at like 9 years old and is the only member in her family, so we stop by frequently and started to teach her uncle, Rubins. We taught him a few lessons and he came to church and wants to get baptized next Saturday, but we felt like he was also a little bit more interested in the missionaries than the lessons if you know what I mean. The elders are teaching him now and I think that´s really best because he is a single man, so I think the elders can really help him out. 

We also had some really spiritual street contacts this week. I had a number of really spiritual street contacts during my exchange with Sister Thornhill--we taught one lesson on the street that really stuck out to me. We met Renata, who was actually on her way to a church in Santo Amaro. She stopped and listened to our message about the Restoration, and we felt impressed to tell the First Vision. As I told her, I began to cry a little bit because we could all feel the Spirit so strongly. We all seemed to forget that we were on the side of the road and that she was in a hurry. When I finished bearing my testimony, she said, ``Now I´m really interested.I am going to visit your church.`` We testified of the Book of Mormon and gave her one. From that experience, I really learned that contacts are really the time to help them to feel the Spirit and recognize it. I like a quote from Preach My Gospel from chapter 10 at the end of the section on How to Begin Teaching that says: As you share spiritual experiences together in the first meeting, they will recognize you as servants of the Lord.  How true! I feel like that is really our responsibility as missionaries. 

The next day with Sister Soares da Silva and a member, Mayara , we met Sonia in the street. She was really interested in the church and wants her whole family to hear our message and she even accepted a baptismal date! I really believe that she accepted a baptismal date because we testified of the Restoration and that God answers prayers. I could feel the Spirit as Mayara testified. Yeah the contact was a big longer but that´s okay. We, as the missionaries, can´t rush contacts. People often will because they don´t recognize us as servants of the Lord, but at least we know that. From now on, I really want to try to really testify and share personal experiences during contacts. It has really helped me to feel the Spirit more throughout the day.

 I know that our efforts can really make a difference. One person really can change things for a family, their community, their ward, etc. Most of the time we don´t see the fruits right away, but I think that is part of walkig by faith and ot by sight. 
Know that I am happy! The members are feeding us well. One of my favorite this is the juice here--fresh pineapple juice is heavenly; one of my favorite things here! We also had a churrasco (BBQ) lunch yesterday :) 

Thanks for your love and enthusiasm.Your emails and cards really inspire me every week!

Sister Sadie Bledsoe

p.s. yesterday my district leader told me to read Zechariah 2:6 because he said it is about Santa Claus... the things we find on our missions and think are funny...

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