Well this past week has been very good. I feel like I have been learning a lot. Annnnndddd guesss what!!!!! I have officially reached my ONE YEAR MARK on my mission!!!!!! Yeah!!!!! One thing that I did this past week that I was very happy about is that I finished the Book of Mormon in Portuguese. It's been my goal for a while, and on my year mark I finished it! It's so great to know that no matter what language it is, the Book of Mormon is still the word of God and you can feel of its truthfulness as you read. I'm so grateful for the chance that I have to learn a new language on my mission. It has taught me a lot about the spirit.
One of my own personal goals that I have been working on is to have more structure to my personal study... saying the night before what I am going to study and taking the time to specifically study for our investigators. I feel that it has made such a huge difference to me. When we go into lessons, I feel more prepared and that I have the spirit even more.
Our investigators have been really great this week.... they're all pretty much back in town!!! The most success that we have had this past week is with one of our investigators named Donna. She is going through a lot of life challenges right now. Her husband passed away 2 months ago, she may have cancer, she is trying to quit smoking, and she is 72 years old. Early in the week we went by and read Alma 32 with her. As we read, we stopped and explained some of the things and related them to her life. It was really touching to see her reaction. Her eyes would light up and you could just tell that she understood it. We left her with a few more chapters to read and then returnedevening to give her a church tour and take her to the Addiction Recovery Program. It was SOOO good! We brought a member with us and Donna had such a great experience. She kept telling us that she didn't know what she was feeling, but that she knew she wanted to keep coming. Donna is keeping all of her commitments and she has such a sincere desire to learn and to grow. It is truly humbling to see!
Aaron Peeps is another one of our investigators. He has a bunch of anxiety, adhd, and some other thing that I can't spell correctly. He has really been helping Sister Hamilton and I to teach simply and creatively. He has a strong desire to strengthen his relationship with God, but it isn't the main priority in his life. I'm not quite sure where to go with him. Our goal for this next week with him is to teach him the restoration one point at a time and to help him get to the point where he understands it on his own. It might take a bit longer, but with Aaron, I do feel like once he understands something, he gets it. Also, Aaron is such a great guy! He has been inviting his mom to every lesson we have with him! She isn't open yet, but I am super hopeful that that will change!
Loretta is coming along very nicely. We haven't had a chance to have a sit down lesson with her in a while since things have been sooo crazy in her life. We did have a lesson this past week with her though and it was good! Her husband was there and he wasn't super open, so we just did the best and shared our testimony to him. He left againnight so hopefully this next week we will be able to have a good lesson with Loretta. We are excited to teach her the Plan of Salvation and invite her to live the Word of Wisdom. Loretta's Sister is a member of the church and Loretta has been receiving a ton of fellowship which is just awesome.
President Griffin gave us a charge to give up our weapons of war--to prayerfully consider ways that we can be better and things that we need to give up and to do them. I'm super excited to uncover some more of my personal weapons of war and to give them up and give them over to the Lord. I know that at times I can be impatient, so that is something that I will be giving up and trying to turn my will more in line with God's will. (Ha, I guess that waiting for a VISA is great practice for patience haha!! :)) I'll be praying for more guidance as to things I can improve to be more of the person that God wants me to be and to become more fully converted to him!
Well this week has been good. I am excited to see how things go this next week and to work super hard. Oh, also this week we weeded this lady's yard. It started to sprinkle and Sister Hamilton and I decided that we were tough so we were going to stick it out... next thing it was DOWN POURING. We got drenched. head and foot. not a dry spot on us. It was super fun!
Well, I love you all so much!! Thanks for all that you do!