Tuesday, October 7, 2014

This Time We Ate Alligator


This week was so great!  Seriously, I am so happy.  I have never had a better relationship with my companion, I love the members, I have so many opportunities to serve, and I love each of our investigators so much.  That isn´t to say that everything is perfect or that everyone´s doing what I want them to (that definitely wouldn´t be perfect), but I don´t know, I feel like Heavenly Father´s blessing me with an enthusiasm or faith that isn´t mine.  I don´t know where it came from!  We leave the house in the morning, super excited to work, and we get home at night, dying, but so grateful for all the miracles we saw that day.  I don´t know why Heavenly Father´s blessing us so much... but we´re trying to deserve it.

Anyways, my comp and I were in high efficiency mode this week.  I have never worked so hard.  We have a ton of great people we´re teaching right now, and we wanted to make sure that all of them made it to conference.  We prayed, we fasted, we got the members in on it, and in the end, we reaped the delicious fruits of our labors- almost all of them came and to the exact session that had their answers!  We have a huge testimony that if you prepare yourself for conference, you will receive immediate and direct answers, and we made that promise to everyone we talked with this week.  At one point, when one of our investigators said he might travel this weekend, I literally got down on my knees and begged, ''I don´t accept that!  You have to go to conference!  Heavenly Father has things you need to hear!''  And he went!  to three sessions!  We didn´t get to listen to hardly anything that was said because we were running around grabbing children, calling investigators, talking with members, etc, but I know that prayers were answered.

I wish I had time to talk about all of the amazing people we are teaching, but I don´t, so I´ll just talk about our miracle family-

I think I mentioned this in another email, but we have our huge family history fair coming up on the 25th of October.  Bruna, the director of the family history center, is combining forces with the work for the living (missionary work) and making this an unforgettable experience not just for the stake, but all of Belém.  I am so excited!  We´re going to have a room in which we can talk about how missionary work relates to family history (see ensign from October) and what we believe about eternal families.  The family history assistants will go around getting references for us, but our principal responsability is to find a family to be baptized at the end of the fair.  That´s where Claudio and his family come in.  Two weeks ago, after p day, we were out making contacts at night when we stopped to talk to this man and woman who were listening to the radio.  I asked them where they bought it, talked about how my dad always listens to politics on the radio, which lead into a disscussion about a variety of world topics.  We ended up sharing a brief message about the restoration and about how all the things going on in the world are evidences that God´s work still continues.  They were fascinated.  Their questions were superb and intelligent.  They have friends that are members who are great examples.  They have never talked with missionaries before.  They asked if they could do a study of our religion with us.... WHAT?!?!?!  We marked a date to come back and walked home, half stunned, half screaming- família eleita!!!  And ever since, it´s just been amazing.  They already live and believe in everything.  The spirit is so strong in our lessons, and they understand and even expound upon everything we say.  They were leaders in another church here, but left because they saw hipocracy in it.  Claudio, Lene, Isabelle, Larissa, Ester, and Claudia all came to General Conference, loved it, came back the next day, and then asked when and where the regular services happen.  All of the members, after talking with them at conference, rallied around this family, giving them a tour of the church (including the baptismal font, ha) and begging to teach this family with us.  We have found our family!  Seriously, I don´t understand why we are being so blessed.. but I love them, and they remind me a lot of our family with all of it´s girls.

So much more to say, but no more time.

I love you all!  I hope you got a lot out of conference and are putting it in practice.  I don´t remember how to say this in english, so... apoiar seus líderes!!

Sister Barkdull

P.S.  We had lunch with that irmão who made us that meal of cow organs again.  This time we ate aligator.  Not much better..

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